Thursday, December 30, 2010

Coffee Chat - End of Year Review

Well hello!  Come on in.  There's fruitcake tonight and coffee and a warm spot here to chat. 

It does look a bit bleak doesn't it, without the Christmas tree lit up?  I removed the ornaments this afternoon and now the top portion of the tree won't light.  It looked perfectly silly with just the bottom two thirds lit up and that top portion dark, so I simply unplugged it and there it sits.  Just as it is. 

I've been slowly undecorating all this week.  I put the snow couple from the front porch on the dining table and surrounded it with the pinecone picks I bought at the dollar store.  It looks very cozy and nice at the moment, but I'm ready for something 'new' which doesn't of course, necessarily mean something new but does mean something I've not done before, something that looks fresh and pretty.  But I've a whole day to work on that tomorrow. 

Gracious there's so much to share I feel positively as though my brain were spinning.  But I suppose the very first thing to talk about is the new address.  It's like this:  I've been over at Xanga for the past four years and was pleased enough with how the blog worked there...not so much with some of the ads, featured blogs and such that I had to see along the way to my blog and it was virtually impossible to shield my eyes and guard my thoughts when some of the photos were so in my face.  I work diligently in my home to keep such images from my vision through television and movies and guard my thoughts by not reading such things and it's terribly hard to have them shoved in your face on your way into your blog home.  So that is reason #1 why I decided to move the blog.

Reason #2 may sound a bit mercenary but there you have it.  Blogspot offers the opportunity to build a small income through widgets and adsense and a few other venues.  Something that Xanga is less keen on allowing users to do and the set up system at Xanga is  frustrating to the point of ripping out hair and screeching a dozen times over as first one, then a dozen other things, lead to a refusal to allow the posting.  It's not that I think I'll get rich with these things on the blog, but it is a way to hopefully generate something to compensate for my time, if only a bit of Amazon credit to use to purchase books for my shelves and at the same time have a way to allow others to see and purchase the very books I am currently reading, because so often I get emails and comments asking for information.

I talked it over with Kay earlier this week and the upshot of that conversation was that I'd try Blogspot, setting it up and preparing to make the move mid-summer.   But set up went so fast and so smoothly that by the end of the day on Monday, the site was ready and the Amazon widget installed easy as pie.  I'm still struggling with the Adsense thing but that will hopefully come as I learn more about Blogspot.  In the meantime, I have to share that I not only set up this site but a new PennyRecipes site as well in just a matter of an afternoon.  Isn't that awesome?

So.....What do you think?  Isn't it pretty?  And will you come see me now I've moved to a new house?  I do hope so!

I spent time Christmas Day reviewing the year past and working on New Year's resolutions.  I've shared before that I tend to divide my resolutions into categories: Spiritual Life, Marriage, Family, Self, Home and Garden, Finances.  I try to set goals monthly in each area that will promote the overall goal of the year.  And I try hard not to make the repetitive same old goals.  You know, Eat more healthily, Get organized, Lose Weight....The typical New Year's resolutions featured in every single solitary January issue of every magazine currently being published. 

I won't bore you with my New Year's resolutions, but I'd like to share some of my goals for January:
#1.  Spiritual and Marriage are combined this month:  I want to pray for my husband morning and night.  Why?  Because he's going through a rough patch at the moment and it's hard.  There's an important opportunity in front of him, coming up in the next couple of weeks and it could be pivotal to our lives.  He needs prayer for that.  And finally, there's the very nature of his work which is tough as can be at the best of times and downright spiritually and emotionally tough at the worst of times.  An EMT sees the more horrific sides of people's lives and it's hard.  My husband needs the bolstering, the protection and the strength that prayer can give.
#2. Family:  Write one letter to a family member every single weekend this month.
#3. Self:  Lie down and rest for 30 minutes every day.  I've struggled for years with the idea that an afternoon nap or stretching out on the bed was laziness.  Fact is that when you're up at 5:30a and the day doesn't end until nearly 11p, it's a long day by everyone's standards.  I think stretching out and relaxing for 30 minutes, and even napping if it comes to it, will only benefit me in the long run.  I can always use that time to read, listen to a CD of music or a sermon or simply soak in the quiet.
#4.  Finances:  Starting that Christmas fund.  Well this one's started!  I have money set aside for my first deposit.  I'll put it in the account on Wednesday when I'm going through town.
#5.  A combination of Finances and Home here:  a pantry and freezer challenge.  This will hopefully give our account a little boost this month.  We've plenty of foodstuffs on hand and I need the opportunity to get a good idea of the inventory it takes to feed us for a month.  You see, I want to try and eventually have enough food on hand that we could pretty much manage for a year on what we have stored.  I read a handy bit of advice this week on a blog: start with two weeks worth, build up to a 3 month supply, then a 6 month supply and finally a year's supply.  It seemed just the sort of incremental approach I like. 
#6.  Home and Garden:  Get that breakfast room finished up!  There are pictures to be hung, chairs to be cut down and painted but that's it.  I'm that close to having the room completed and I just got sidetracked for the holidays.  Finishing up that project will allow me to get to work on the next project I have planned.
#7.  Plant the daffodil bulbs I bought in early December.  I've got them stored in the refrigerator vegetable bin just now but they need to go in the ground, or at least in a pot very soon.  If it proves to be a rainy month (and January sometimes can be) I'll put the bulbs in a pretty crocus pot filled with pebbles and force them to bloom indoors.

The newlyweds hung around all day long Monday.  Kay was complaining of feeling terribly tired and I thought it no wonder, since they'd gone non-stop since they'd left home Wednesday morning.  They left here Tuesday morning quite early and she called after getting through Atlanta to tell me she really felt very tired.  I know Kay panics a bit when she feels worn out ever since that awful year she spent six months being ill.  However, by the time they arrived home she called me once more and this time she sounded terribly stuffy and said they'd stopped to pick up cold meds and Hot Wings.  Seems my girl was truly tired because her body was fighting hard to ward off illness.

If I'd stopped and thought about it for half a moment, Alan mentioned this past weekend that he'd been terribly tired the last few days of the week...Chance told me today that Alan was ill and he thought we'd better stop by while out running errands and bring him Hot and Sour soup from the Chinese takeout.  I wasn't even aware that Alan had been unwell but when Chance called to ask if he'd like soup, Alan said he'd been to the doctor.  For Alan to go to the doctor is unheard of and yes, he was sick enough to require medication as well.  And we did stop by to drop off the soup and some Vitamin C before heading home.

Do you notice a pattern here?  Both Kay and Alan are huge believers in the power of the spicy to help cure what ails them.   I don't know just where they got this notion from, but it's helpful enough they both repeat it throughout an illness. 

I cleaned house after the kids left Tuesday morning before I left to go do my Big the time I arrived home I was exhausted, so much so that I didn't even put away all the groceries.  I got the cold things put away and fed the animals and sort of collapsed in my chair.  Went to bed that night and slept all night long and a bit later than usual yesterday morning, then took a nap of almost an hour's duration yesterday afternoon after a fairly easy on me day.  This is my remedy to not feeling well: rest, rest, and more rest.  And lots of water, Zinc and Vitamin C.  It works very well for me and I can assure you that today I felt quite my usual self.

Tomorrow my husband will be away from home, working on setting up the sound equipment at our new synagogue venue (even our congregation is moving to a new home!).  I plan to stay right here at home, doing some housework.  I just long to mop floors and get things spic and span before the New Year arrives.  I won't be doing any huge major reorganization or deep deep cleaning but I would most certainly like to have it a little more than usually clean.  It seems a good time now the Christmas decorations are out of the house and the usual stuff hasn't yet been put back on the tabletops and such.

Well gracious me!  I'd no idea I'd chatted so late.  I'll end here, but tomorrow I shall be working on a Frugal Friday post.  I look forward to having you stop by again!  Good night!



Louise said...

How exciting to end an OLD year by starting a New Blog home. I have a blog account but I never write in it.. Oh and I'd love to know the blog you mentioned regarding starting with two week food supply, etc. I really enjoy those kinds of blogs. I am planning a no spend month.. just spending money on necessities such as vehicle gas, fresh veggies and the like.

thearmychapswife said...

Welcome! I set up a blog here too, and for the time being there is some crossover between this one and xanga. I haven't decided if I'll just keep one or continue to do both. Anyway, I hope you have lots of fun!

Lisa (leasejw on xanga) (thearmychapswife on blogspot)

Rhonda said...

Hello! Yes, this new blog is very pretty, the retro art and polka dots are so pleasing to the eye.
I kind of have a new-years list like yours rumbling around in my head and sort of started on paper, I should use yours as a template and get going on mine. Just one day more of 2010

Tracy said...

Now I can comment more frequently on your posts! Love the new blog's look.

Wishing you a very Happy New Year! :)

Nancy said...

Welcome to your new blog home.I also like the clean look here and especially the polka dots.I also have a blog on blogspot so it is home to me:)Happy New Year!

Manuela@TPOH said...

Well hello and welcome!

Your blog looks so pretty! I'm glad you moved - I always had to go through the whole sign in process whenever I left a comment at your old blog. Now I'll leave comments more frequently!

The Amazon widget is good to have. I have it on my blog and make enough now and then to buy a few books. You should put the Swagbucks Swidget on here too.

Happy New Year!