Sunday, December 31, 2017

Dinner's Ready~Top 5 Recipe Posts 2017

Happy New Year's Eve friends! 

I thought I would close out the year by sharing the Top 5 most viewed recipes here on the blog.  There seems to be a bit of a pattern...easy, tasty, good old comfort food. 

I plan to share more recipes like these with you all in the coming year.  This past year brought on the new challenge of cooking dairy free.  We were already eating gluten free, and soy and nut free 75% of the time.  With a few adjustments and some great products, the task no longer seems so daunting.  I get asked a lot about what products/brands we like best, so I hope to share those as part of the recipe segment here on the blog.

Our youngest got her most recent food sensitivity tests back last month, and my results will be back late January.  And yes, once again we will be making some adjustments.

If you would like me to share more about our food journey, or if you have questions, please ask.  While not experts by any means, we are always happy to share what is working for us.

I pray you all have a Safe and Happy New Year.  Here's to a Healthy 2018!

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Simply Christmas 2017~

Happy Day after Christmas friends.  I pray you and your families had a Merry Christmas, and enjoyed your time together yesterday.  For those of you missing loved ones this year, my heart and prayers go out to you as this was our first Christmas without my sweet Mother-in-Law, so I totally understand how bittersweet the holidays can be.  I did manage to recreate her much loved  Anise flavored Christmas cookies, and it made it seem like she was close by (actually I know she was definitely coaching me through it, or laughing at me, as I tried to recreate them gluten, dairy AND soy free).  My hubby commented that she would be asking "why I was asking someone named Alexa to set a timer and what in world is gluten, dairy and soy free and why would anyone want to eat like that!!???" She was 98 1/2 when she passed away, and the DVD player still gave her fits.  I can only imagine what she would think about Alexa!

The weather leading up to Christmas was somewhat depressing, cold, rainy and generally overcast, so taking indoor pics was a bit challenging.  And then again, maybe it was just the photographer ;-)  But I did manage to snap some over the weekend, and thought I would go ahead and share our holiday home with you. I actually quite enjoy this week.  The week after leading up to the New Year.  The hustle and bustle is over, and we can just sit back and enjoy the sights, sounds and smells of the holiday season.

Lots of pictures, so I'll mostly let  them do the talking.

Welcome to Simply Christmas 2017~

The entryway received fresh bows this year along with tiered packages that we set atop our urns.

The skates that adorn this wreath belonged to my youngest.  Our girls were competitive figure skaters for many years, and lots of hours were logged in the skates that adorn our home this time of year.  Lots of blood, sweat, tears and precious memories.

As you enter our home, our staircase is also sporting a pair of ice skates and it just wouldn't be the holidays without LOTS of plaid!

The doors leading to my home office are each adorned with wreaths that have the initials of our family members on them.

The hall leading to the kitchen got spruced up just a bit with a bench that normally is in our family room.  However, I am kinda liking its new spot so it might stay after the holidays.

I made this adorable ribbon wreath at our Women's Ministry event earlier in the month.

Our downstairs powder room got a touch of Christmas as well with a woodland and cardinal theme. I also love swapping out the frame near the sink area seasonally.

As you enter our home to the right is our living room/library/piano room.  This room houses our vintage white tree and Shiny Bright ornaments.  The baby gate is a necessity. 1) to protect those precious ornaments from our resident 75 pound Golden Retriever and 2) it gives our little 14 pound Cairn a space to escape the aforementioned canine buddy of hers!  So, it too got a little touch of Christmas with a wreath and bow.

This room held so many memories this year.  Many of the shelves have pictures of my sweet in-laws, and the Shiny Bright ornaments and sweet little church that illuminates and plays Silent Night belonged to my Mother in Law.  I feel honored to be able to display them now in our home.

A top the piano our little Christmas village is displayed.  We have had this set since our girls were little.  I look forward to setting it up each year.

The rocking chair belonged to my husband when he was a child.

Our vintage tree adorned with hand me down Shiny Bright ornaments.

Our dining room.  This room is a bit harder to photograph as it tends to either be flooded with light or dark.

I just love this vintage crate.  My husband proposed to me at my parents home on Fox Hollow Drive. This was a lucky find.  I have my local blog friend Kim of Savvy Southern Style to thank as she had posted a picture of it on her blog after out antiquing, and I was lucky enough to find it still there when I went to look for it.

The kitchen got a few Christmas touches as well.

Our advent wreath is center on our kitchen table.  A reminder of what the season is truly about.

The industrial shelves were a new addition to our kitchen this year and I have loved decorating them for the different seasons.

And we love our coffee and hot chocolate!

On to the family room.  This 13 foot beauty takes center stage for sure.  She is by far the prettiest tree we have had to date and has dropped only a handful of needles thus far!

And Christmas just isn't complete until my girls decorate their gingerbread houses after dinner on Christmas Eve.  I just adore the new dog houses!

Well, that concludes this year's tour. Less than one week until a New Year begins.  I pray you all have a blessed week heading into 2018!

Merry Christmas friends.