Sunday, December 28, 2014

A Weekend of Happy

This has been such a wonderful weekend.  It has been so peaceful.  I got to stitch the past couple of days, which has been such a joy.  Making it even better, I got to watch lots of Real Housewives, my total guilty pleasure.  We took a small break yesterday to take a beautiful walk along the Pacific Ocean with Liesl.  She had the happiest trot going through the whole walk.  We took our walk at a leisurely pace so she got to smell every plant and every spot that she wanted to.  It was such a beautiful sunny day and the sell of the salt air was so delightful.  It was at one of our favorite walking spots and it was so beautiful and amazing.
When we got home, Liesl ate her dinner and wanted to be tucked into her bed.  It has been cold here in the evenings, so she has been enjoying the tuck in.  After she went off to bed we got to watch an adorable Christmas movie and relax.  It was such a blessing.
Today was so peaceful.  I have had a cold the past couple of days.  I am really careful about not attending church when I have a cold or virus because I understand that many of the older people have compromised immune systems and may not weather a cold in the same way that I can.  So we stayed home from church today.  So I relaxed, watched bad reality television and stitched.  It was such a quiet day.  I also got to cook today!  I made a vat of spaghetti sauce with the still meaty bones from the Christmas prime rib.  It is fabulous and will be frozen in batches for future meals.  I also took some of the leftover prime rib and all of the leftover veggies in the fridge and made a huge pot of minestrone.  It turned out perfectly and the fridge is all cleaned out!  Bonus!  I was in my total happy.
The best part of the weekend was being home with the guy and dog that I love so much.  I was in my total happy.  I enjoyed the peace and creativity of the weekend.  I enjoyed the great company.  I appreciated the opportunity to relax and revitalize.  There really is no place like home!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Happy Weekend!

I hope everyone had a great holiday week!  Ours was absolutely blissful!  We attended the most beautiful and blissful Christmas Eve service at our church.  It was so joyful and set the tone for the holiday.  After the service, we went to my best friend's Norwegian Christmas Eve dinner.  I feel blessed that we get invited every year.  It is a meal of Norwegian meatballs (the recipe has been in the family for five generations), salmon, red cabbage, potatoes, and several vegetables.  Then for dessert we have krumkakkes and ice cream.  It is so yummy and so awesome to sit and talk and laugh.  We had so much fun.  My BFF sent me home with an amazing homemade quiche for us to have for Christmas breakfast.  It was such a blessing!
Christmas morning was fun opening presents.  Of course, Santa loves puppies, too, so Liesl got several new presents.  She was so happy.  She loves wrapping paper best of all and had a blast shredding a great deal of it.  (Note: Whenever I was wrapping presents, Liesl likes to come stand on the paper while I am trying to put it on a present.  She thinks she is hilarious.)  She made herself really tired with all of her paper hijinks.
So after exchanging gifts, we set about getting ready for the family to come over for dinner and more presents.  My sweet baboo makes the best prime rib, so we had a delicious dinner.  It was just a great day and I so enjoyed the time with the family.  We both crashed into bed exhausted by about 8:45. 
I have really been looking forward to this weekend.  Bill and I have said since last weekend that we are not doing anything this weekend, other than taking Liesl for some nice walks.  Other than that we plan on a nice, leisurely weekend at home, enjoying each other's company, watching movies, reading, etc.  He has such a warm, cheerful and extremely mellow personality so he is such a joy to be around.  My cross stitch is sitting ready for me.  I took my calligraphy pens out so I can play with them.  Liesl is snuggled up in a blanket next to me.  She is generally not a lap dog, but in winter likes to snuggle close.  All of the presents are out of my craft room so I may reclaim the space.  I am looking forward to a nice, creative day.
So I think I shall go make my honey the pancakes that he loves so much and prepare for my craft fun day.  I hope you all have a day filled with lots of creative possibilities!

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Holiday Thoughts

Well, we are off to a happy start of the holiday season.  I just have a couple more things to purchase, and I am done with my Christmas shopping!  I have never been done this early.  I feel that I can actually enjoy the holiday season this year.  Instead of feeling stressed, today Liesl's Daddy and I browsed in a couple of stores, had a nice lunch, and came home to do chores.  We still had some vacation/camping gear all over the living room after returning last weekend.  It was nice to just take my time getting organized.
While I was cleaning up, I decided to do a little baking.  I made my Cranberry-Orange bread from scratch.  I used to bake it all of the time when my kids were young.  It was fun to make and bought back lots of memories.  I also made a batch of marshmallows, which are so much better than store bought.  They are lighter and so yummy.  I just use the Martha Stewart recipe available on her website.  I am looking forward to hot cocoa this week!
With 2015 looming so close, I have been thinking about my goals for the new year.  I have been so busy with work this year.  So next year I want to make sure that I make time for crafting again.  I would really like to become really proficient at hardanger in 2015.  I love hardanger and have studied it but I still get intimidated about starting a piece.  I would like to build my confidence and ability with it.  I also have quilts to make, walks to take, weight to lose...
I think we would also like to go camping and travelling a bit more.  We had such a great time on our vacation.  We were also impressed that Liesl totally gets camping.  She loved sitting by the campfire, taking walks, and being in the outdoors.  We love having her with us, and love that she is so happy being with us.
So tonight I feel so grateful for the opportunity to enjoy the holiday season.  I feel so fortunate and so blessed. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Silly Me...

I feel so silly.  I can not believe that I did not share a photo of a couple of the most iconic sites at Yosemite.  So I am adding Half Dome and Yosemite Falls below.  I miss them already...

I am sad because my camera did not pick up that there was a rainbow in the Lower Falls.  It was so spectacular.  It seems that there are rainbows all day long all over Yosemite.  It is so amazing.
We are still settling into real life.  It was kinda harsh going in to work today even though I really like my job .  There really should be a slow re-entry program after a vacation.  :) So far tonight we have made it to 9:30 and are staying up late like grown-ups.  LOL
I have been Cyber Monday-ing this evening.  Santa will be sending our presents in boxes with smiles on them.  I am proud to say that I have been a good girl and have only bought myself one little book although there are many tempting items.  I have over half of my Christmas shopping done, too.  I am hoping this leaves time for some extra fun things.  Liesl's Daddy wants to have a baking day on the weekend so I hope to have lots of time to makes lots of yummy sugar plums and hang out with my sweet baboo and my sweet Liesl. 
Speaking of baking sugar plums, I was totally stoked to see that the Girl Scouts will now be selling their delightful cookies online!  I love me some Samoas and Tagalongs.  I found a box of Samoas in the cabinet about a month ago and it was like finding buried treasure.  Plus it is a good thing to support scouting organizations. 
We are getting ready for some major rain here for the rest of the week.  This is such a blessing because dear California is desperately in need of it.  The rains have come early this year.  We love rain and the sound it makes.  I love the coziness of a rainy day and would love to curl up with a good book and cup of tea.  For the rest of the week, however, it will just mean soup dinners.  Yum!
Hope you are warm and cozy where you are!