Saturday, December 31, 2016

My word and goals for 2017

This past year has been draining to me. There have been emotional hurdles, physical hurdles, and just draining experiences throughout the year. I cannot ever remember when I was so glad to see a year go away. 

I love the start of a new year. I know that it another day in our life cycles, but there is something about turning onto a new calendar page in a new calendar that offers a sense of hope for things to come. 

I have come to a point in my life where I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. I am tired of living the way that I am-- fighting depression, being overweight and just feeling weighed down by stuff and life. I can honestly say that I feel different going into this new year. I feel like I can accomplish my goals (not calling them resolutions, because I never stick to resolutions). More than that I believe 100% that my goals are achievable if I just DO the steps that it takes to get there.

Because of that belief, I have decided that I am going to focus on that word for 2017. I am going to focus on DO! I just need to do. If I come up with an idea and leave myself to ponder it, then more than likely it won't get done. I just need to DO it.

So what am I going to DO?

Well here are my goals for 2017 and how I will achieve them:

  • Be more calm and patient with my children. I also would like to play at least 1 board game a week with each child.
  • Go on at least 1 date night with Dear Hubby every two weeks- ideally this would be every week, but with our schedules I will aim for once every 2 weeks.
  • Try to have friends over at least once every 2 months.
  • No social media on Sundays. I spend so much time on the computer and on my phone that I need to make time for the real life.  

  • eat a salad for lunch at least 5 days out of the week
  • eat dinner with the family
  • eat breakfast each morning
  • NO pop during the week (limit 1 on the weekend days)
  • exercise at least 15 minutes every day
  • Declutter a room a month starting with the closet off the bathroom in January.
  • If I see something that we aren't using, put it in Goodwill pile and donate. Do not hold onto stuff that we don't use. 
  • Get all of our photos backed up on Shutterfly.
  • Get all photos made into photobooks (as cheaply as possible)
  • Do sewing on quilt to mend it. 
  • Make a recipe binder that I will actually use. 
  • Try 2 new recipes a month. 
  • This will start out in January with no eating out as a family. 

I know that these are all attainable. Just need to get them done. I am looking forward to focusing my life on DOING things rather than letting life pass me by and just maintaining the status quo. 

What about you? Anyone else making goals for the new year?

Friday, December 30, 2016

Books that I read for fun in December

Over the last year and a half, I started documenting the books that I read for fun (and not just for review purposes).  I have decided that I need to continue that as reading is important part of how I relax. Books that I read for fun are books that I have not been asked to review and that I have chosen to read, well because I like to read. In 2015, I read a total of 49 books! This year, 2016, I am aiming to read 52 books...Not including this month I have read 56 books so I have met my goal for this year! That is what having a major health issue does for you as well--- gives you time to read when you can't do anything else

So....What did I read in December? 

After not having any time to read for fun in October or November, I finally made time for reading in December. Christmas books are so much fun to read this time of year.

Here are the books I read for fun in:

September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
March-April 2016
February 2016
January 2016
Books from 2015
Books from 2014

                                                 Have you read any good books lately?
Any books you would recommend for me to read in 2017

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Christmas Evening

If our Christmas morning and afternoon were great, so was our Christmas evening. 

After I had finished all the rolls, we packed up and headed to my mom and dad's house for Christmas dinner. 

More gifts at Nanny and Pappy's house

We got there around 4 and were greeted with our extended family-- my mom, dad, sister, brother, brother's girlfriend, other brother, his wife, 2 nephews and 1 niece. Add in our crew, and there were 15 of us there. It was loud and crazy and wonderful. 

When we arrived we discovered that my sister Mary was in bed sick. She was throwing up and had a fever. I went in and told her Merry Christmas and she told me "F You!" because she thought she had caught the stomach thing from us. I take it all in stride though, as she and I have a special relationship. 

After some of the chaos, my mom corralled everyone into the living room to open presents.

Jacob opening his sports cards-- there are thousands there



The kids were spoiled and received many lovely gifts. Rebecca received some new boots (both dressy and winter), books and some shopkins gifts. Jacob received a ton of sports cards, mini football helmets, and a new pair of winter boots. Benjamin received a Star Wars figure, Chewbacca pajamas, and several other Star Wars related gifts.

Bill and I were also spoiled and received nice items as well, including restaurant gift cards. Bill also received a couple dvds that he wanted. I received some bath and body works shower gels and body sprays as well as a mini ipad. 

After everyone opened their gifts, we settled in for a yummy Christmas dinner. (Well some of us did, the men came in after the Cavaliers basketball game was over!)

My dinner plate

kids table

After dinner, it was time for our annual family pictures (otherwise known as my mom wants pictures of everyone!).

The boys

The girls

Selfie with my mom making rabbit ears

Me and my brothers and sister

Our family

My brother and his family

My mom and dad

Then it was time to head home, exhausted from the fun day and basking in the glory that was Christmas 2016. I understand that we had a wonderful Christmas and I feel very blessed to say that this holiday was wonderful.  

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Christmas Morning and Afternoon

If our Christmas Eve was wonderful, our Christmas Day was awesome (as my daughter would say!)! We had a wonderful Christmas Day. 

It started out around 8:30 when our kids came in to wake us up. We headed downstairs to see that Santa had indeed come to our house and the kids were so excited. 

We opened stockings first. 

Then they got to open their gifts. The kids took turns opening their gifts one at a time. They all loved their gifts that they got. 

Santa brought them each one gift-- Rebecca received Shopkins, Benjamin received Thomas the train trains from "The Great Race" and "The Great Race" dvd and book, and Jacob received a Cleveland Browns lego set. And Santa brought the whole family a "Mythbusters" game. Santa brought Bill a Marvel trivia game and he brought me an oceans adult coloring book.

Rebecca also received a couple new books, an outfit, shopkins necklace, 100 gel pens, a coloring poster,  a coloring puzzle,  and a Spongebob Squarepants adult coloring book.

Jacob received a couple of new books, an outfit, a basketball guys set, a football board game and a Rob Gronkowski poster that he was over the moon about. 

Benjamin received a Captain America pillow, a set of super heros, a puzzle and game all in one, a Star Wars book, a Star Wars shirt and hat. 

After the kids opened their gifts, Bill and I opened ours. Bill received a Star Wars book, a Batman blu-ray, 2 shirts (including one with a quote from "Mythbusters"), and a 1 pound package of Reese's cups. I received Nicholas Sparks' new book, a set of 3 new skillets, and "The Magnolia Story" book.

It was a very nice, relaxing morning. We always do Hostess mini donettes for breakfast and so while the kids were opening presents they were also enjoying their donettes. The house was a glorious mess and I really didn't mind as much that there was stuff everywhere. ;-) 

In the afternoon, Rebecca played with her shopkins, Ben played with his trains, and Bill and Jacob played some of his football game. I was baking as my mom texted in a panic that she had forgot to get rolls for dinner. She wanted me to see if anywhere in our town was open, but there wasn't. A quick google search and I found a great no-yeast recipe for rolls that everyone loved. So I spent my afternoon baking those. 

Overall, it was a wonderful Christmas morning and afternoon, with more memories to come that evening.  

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Low key wonderful Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day have come and gone. I can say that it was a wonderful holiday. 

On Friday, my sister came over and helped the kids decorate sugar cookies for Santa. I used a new recipe this year from the Frugal Girl and they turned out fabulous! I will definitely be adding this recipe to our repertoire. 

Christmas Eve, Bill was home all day and we just hung around the house. The family relaxed all day watching football and "Mythbusters" and I even got a nap in! I also had a surprise visit from my brother who called to see if I would wrap his wife's presents. LOL. 

Last year we decided to go out to dinner for Christmas Eve so that we could leave someone a nice tip. This year we ended up at Fiesta Mexicana, our local Mexican restaurant. (Most other restaurants closed at 3 in our town-- so next year we may do lunch out!) 

Dinner was fabulous. The food was wonderful (as always) and they had decorated the restaurant with tinsel and garland. It was really nice; and the restaurant was not packed at all, which made it even more special. 

After dinner, we drove around and looked at Christmas lights in our area. Ben LOVED the lights and kept getting super excited when he saw some. 

When we got home, we found presents of new jammies under the tree and a note telling the kids that they were on the nice list this year and that Santa would be back later.

After everyone donned their new jammies, we settled in and watched "Elf" as a family. The kids had never seen it and Rebecca said she really liked it. 

After the movie the kids left milk and cookies out for Santa and headed to bed. I got put in our room, so that Bill could wrap my presents. Then we were able to put out the kids' presents and we went to bed awaiting Christmas morning with the kiddos. 

Monday, December 26, 2016

Happy Homemaker Monday (12/26/2016)

Happy Monday! Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! We had a very relaxing Christmas Eve and Christmas. It was truly good for the soul
Now it is Monday. I have been busy today tutoring this morning. Then we went to lunch as Bill has today off and took the kids for a walk on the Kokosing Trail, as the temperatures were near 60 degrees! This afternoon, I have been cleaning up. I cleaned up the kitchen, and started working on the basement a bit. I am sitting down now to rest and check my email and do a little blogging. So now it is time to get on with our Happy Homemaker Monday (hosted by our friend Sandra over at Diary of a Stay at Home Mom).


It is rainy here right now. The temperature today was over 60 degrees! Tomorrow it is supposed to only by 30 and I think we are supposed to get snow later in the week. 


I actually had no breakfast this morning.


It is grey out and getting dark.    


Typing up this post, listening to the boys playing with their ball they got for Christmas. I am also listening to "Mythbusters" on TV. Rebecca has been watching it off an on over the course of the last couple of days since they are showing a marathon. I am also thinking about my to do list and what else I want to get done this week

The house is in post Christmas mess, which is annoying and wonderful at the same time. 

  • Laundry
  • Collect trash from around the house and take to curb
  • Menu plan for this week and figure out grocery needs
Monday: Tutor  
Tuesday: Tutor. Jacob has wrestling.

Thursday: Tutor. Jacob wrestling.

Saturday: New Year's Eve.
Sunday: Have a good New Year's Day


Sadly nothing, however I got 5 new books for Christmas so hoping to read something soon.




Monday::  Leftovers
Tuesday:: Taco crescent ring, corn
Wednesday:: Chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes 

Thursday:: sloppy joes and tator tots

Friday:: pizza rolls and fruit
Saturday:: appetizers for dinner

Sunday:: Dinner at mom's house


A list of New year's goals and resolutions


That I am pretty blessed with a wonderful family. 



So there you have it, a little peek into my life on this last  Monday before the new year! Hope everyone has a great Monday and a wonderful week!


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