If 2017 was the year of the pickle here at Wide Open Eats, then it was certainly the year of the Pioneer Woman, too. From news of opening up a boutique hotel in Pawhuska to following the updates of her Walmart holiday line, Ree Drummond has had quite the year with the release of her fifth cookbook. Finishing up her book tour, she recently sat down with PEOPLE to talk about her favorite Christmas traditions.
If there's one thing that I've always wanted to know about the Pioneer Woman, it's what she makes for a Christmas morning breakfast. As she shared with PEOPLE, she and her family have biscuits and gravy. The Drummonds, they're just like us! She also said that her Christmas is typically "low-key and relaxing" which sounds like my kind of holiday.
While Alex was home for the summer, we had a get together with her siblings, her cousins, her mama, and her favorite food: tacos. 🌮 It was a heartwarming gathering for this sappy mom/aunt, and you'll see it all unfold on this morning's NEW episode of The Pioneer Woman! You'll also see how gigantic and very old all the kids are. My goodness. See ya at 10 Eastern/9 Central on Food Network! (I ❤️you, Alex. Call your mother.)
As for her home decorations, she might not be stringing up pasta ornaments, but she sticks to a simpler design scheme. "I love nutcrackers, as I was a ballerina growing up. I love candles; the lighting is spiritual. And a real Christmas tree--I couldn't live without the scent in my house."
She also shared her favorite holiday dish to take to holiday gatherings: "Cinnamon rolls, without a doubt." Did you catch this video she shared of making cinnamon rolls with Joy the Baker? It's one of our favorite recipes!
However, there's one thing that struck me the most about this small, candid interview. It was the reminder that yes, Ree Drummond has built an incredibly accessible food empire for home cooks across the country, but behind her is a family that works day in and day out tending to their massive cattle ranch. One so big, it placed her on the list of the Largest Landowners in the U.S. this year.
In response to a question on what ranch life is like during the holidays, Drummond said, "It's very relaxed. Christmas and Thanksgiving are the two days of the year where we know the spurs are going to stay off the boots because the family doesn't have to work. It's such a nice--and rare--treat!"
While we might feel envious of her home, especially the lodge's kitchen, it's important to note that the Drummonds work exceptionally hard for the things they have. Their efforts are inspiring me to focus on gratitude this holiday season, and appreciate the hard work of those around me.