Happy New Year 2014!

champagne.glassesHi and Happy 1st day of 2014!  It is still hard for me to believe that it is January 1, 2014.

How has your day been?  Mine has been lazy and spent with my two favorite guys — my hubby and son. We haven’t done much at all today and that has been exactly what I wanted for today.

As I posted earlier on Facebook, it has been true bliss.  And, for that I am truly thankful!

We did watch the entire Rose Parade live from Pasadena, California, commercial free on HGTV.   I have loved this 125-year old parade for years.  It is the one parade that continues to keep many marching bands and include amazing floats.  Once again it was fun and done very well.

As we were watching this, I made our lunch — mac ‘n cheese, green beans, and sloppy joes made with ground chicken.  It was yummy and filling food.

After that ended, we watched an episode of The Pioneer Woman.  She is one of our favorite chefs on television.  I like how down to earth she is and easy her recipes.  I don’t feel intimidated to try them like with some others.

Then there was an old episode of Starsky and Hutch that my hubby and I watched.  It was from 1975.  It was fun to see the old telephones, typewriters, and cars.  We like to watch these old shows on occasion.

Along with the TV watching has been looking at library books and computer time for me, playing with his new toys for Ian, and various projects, computer time, and fun for Kirk. All in all we are enjoying our super lazy day while still in our pjs.  Not many days like that of the year so we enjoy them while we can.  The fact that we all are well today is a blessing and the cherry on the sundae.

When I decided to write a blog today, I was at first thinking of being philosophical but then thought it would be fun to share about our low-key fun day at home.  Sometimes in life just enjoying the moment is the best thing to do.  You know what I mean?

Tonight we will have leftovers for dinner.  I recently made a homemade chicken pot pie that we still have some of.  That with salad will be great! Beyond that, I don’t know what our evening will bring but I do look forward to more time of taking it easy.

A friend of mine on Facebook said that instead of resolutions she asked that we pick one word to be at the forefront and define 2014.  Her choice was prayer, which is a great one.  Mine was possibilities.  I love all that the coming year has in store for us.  Don’t you?

Here is a quote that sums up today and this year very well.  It is from Brad Paisley.  “Tomorrow is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.”  This inspires me in a lot of ways — both just personally and as a writer.

I hope to do exactly what he is saying and make memories and writings each day!

A Crafty Christmas

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Christmas Eve Eve!  It is hard to believe we just have two days until Christmas!

The only thing we have left to do is finish wrapping some gifts and be ready to exchange them.  We had a family get together yesterday and that was fun. I like a few days of get togethers with both sides of the family.

This year I was very crafty and made items for the first time.  That was partly because of trying to spend less, but also because it was something that I wanted to try.  I had some quality time at home to work on a variety of items for family. It was fun to listen to music and work in our kitchen.  I enjoyed this much better than a lot of time at the stores.

The first picture is of the food that I made — cookies, fudge, and chocolate covered pretzels and white chocolate covered pretzels.  Some of these were challenging since I’d never made them before.  I am glad though that I did this since it was something new to learn and fun as well.

One evening we were watching Ree Drummond on “The Pioneer Woman.”  Ian and I both enjoy her show very much.  She made peppermint fudge.  Since chocolate mint is my favorite, my ears perked right up.  I wrote down the recipe and then looked it up online. Then time at the store.

I made two batches of that, one batch of chocolate fudge, and one batch of chocolate peanut butter fudge.  It was pretty easy and sure tastes good and is very rich.

My next venture was baking cookies — sugar, chocolate chip, and pumpkin spice chocolate chip.  These turned out well and people have liked them so far.  My son, husband, and dad are all self-described cookie monsters so they all have been happy with the results.  Of that I am very pleased.

The last item was the pretzels.  I really like white chocolate covered pretzels and thought it would be fun to make them and the regular chocolate covered as well.  These were the most tedious and I need more practice.  The time it took to cover was almost not enough since the chocolate started hardening so quickly.  Thankfully I made it in time but barely.

My other project was making bead ornaments in the shapes of wreaths and candy canes.  We have made these with my mother for several years now.  I decided it would be fun to make them this year to give away as gifts.

These are fun and very easy to do with pipe cleaners (or fuzzy sticks as the package said) and a variety of beads.  You can see a few of our ornaments in the picture at the bottom of the blog.  Ian helped me make these over two evenings while we were watching television.

I don’t mean to sound like I am talking myself up.  But, when you haven’t done certain things before as I hadn’t, it is fun to share that you had success.  At least it was for me.   This year I have felt like Crafty Patti and it’s been a rewarding experience.

We did buy gifts to go along with the homemade ones.  It is a nice pairing, I think.  May you have a wonderful and very blessed Christmas week!  Please let me know if you too have had a crafty Christmas!