Tag : Holidays

61 posts

I can’t believe we are into December already!! I think its because we have no snow that I’m having a hard time wrapping my brain around it.  Although that is supposed to change in the next couple hours as I write this. I am happy to say that we at least have the tree up and the house decorated…as much as we do. We aren’t outside light people. I admire those who do…it’s just not us.

Last year after the holidays I bought a tree on clearance at our grocery store of all places….totally sight unseen. All I knew was it was pre-lit with white lights. It was such a steal that I couldn’t pass it up especially since out old pre-lit tree had a band of dead lights smack in the middle.Isn’t it pretty!?!? Not bad for $34.

Mini-me put together some new hanging decor for a bare corner of the livingroom.  I gave her a little springboard idea and she ran with it while I was busy. It turned out really cute.

Last Friday I had the privilege of supporting a couple of students on a field trip to Orchestra Hall. I hadn’t been there since Mini-me was in preschool.

It is so unique inside…and beautiful, not that my quick phone picture really captured the beauty.

I spent a good share of Saturday trying to decide between designing a photo card and writing a Christmas letter to send out this year. Who knows…I may do both.

Oh that’s right…I need to update you with my photos to finish out the November photo a day.

22. A favorite thing…..Marvin, of course

23. I made this! ……fabric star ornament (shared the tutorial links last week)

24. I need to do this! ……put all this crap away…just keepin’ it real folks.

25. Time……clock I made over a decade ago….likely should change the battery one of these days.

26. Wall…….my favorite wall especially this time of year.

27. I’m thankful for this…… Love

28. Black…….J’s school chrome book

29. So, this happened…..inflation of the new activity dome outside my school (it’s truly immense)

30. I bought this! ……not telling what’s inside though.

And with that…November is done.

This is my new challenge for December. I followed an old version of the October challenge by this same site. I’m enjoying the creative challenge of these photo a day prompts especially since most days this is my only creative outlet.

Want to see what I’ve already gotten for December?

What are you doing today?


This year for Christmas we changed things up a bit.  In the past several years we’ve had a Christmas brunch and it worked out very well since the kiddos weren’t too great at waiting to open presents. In those days I think they would have preferred everyone spend the night and get up at 6am.  Since they are older now, we decided moving back to a more traditional time for our family was best. That meant we’d need a dessert.

I decided to make a rum cake. I’d made this one before and it was so yummy. The recipe comes from a cookbook called Booze Cakes that I checked out from the library.  The first time I made it I used a standard bundt pan in the classic bundt shape. This time I decided to get a little adventurous and use my fancy bundt pan since it looks a bit like Christmas trees.

rum cake

As it was baking, I was realizing that the tree pan was smaller than the classic pan…I kept watching it in fear that it would run over as it baked. I was lucky…

rum cake

Look how beautifully it came out of the pan! I took a lot of time preparing the pan in hopes that it would work.  So cute!

rum cake

Remember I mentioned this was from a cookbook called Booze Cakes…yeah…that bottle was full when I started and I wasn’t sampling. I don’t even like rum in drinks…but I sure do in cake!!!

Just before serving I dusted the entire cake with powdered sugar giving it the appearance of snow. I totally forgot to snap a photo though. You’ll just have to take my word for it. It was yummy and boozy.

The kids head back to school after winter break so I’ll be all by myself for a change…well I’ll still have Marvin to keep me company.


What are you doing today?

Now that we’ve had a bit of snow that stuck for a few days…although it’s mostly gone again…I’ve been getting into a festive mood.

Christmas tree at night

The tree looks so pretty even with a meager amount of ornaments this year. The ones that are on the tree are not breakable just in case.

Marvin enjoying the lights

Marvin enjoys lounging on the tree skirt and so far has only knocked two ornaments down.

tea for wrapping duty

I enjoyed a cup of tea yesterday morning while wrapping a few presents.


And even my crochet is a festive green color. I know I have tons of flaws, mistakes and goofy stitches in this one. I did it while watching TV, basically in the dark with Mini-me. It doesn’t matter though since this will just be a dish cloth. My stemware really doesn’t care if the stitches are right.

Mr. G is on vacation again this week so I have no idea what the day has in store. It’s kind of fun to have a blank slate once the kids are off to school.

What are you doing today?

Have a safe and happy Holiday!

Happy Independence Day

Happy Syttende Mai!

That’s Norwegian for Happy Seventeenth of May which is Norway’s Constitution Day.  Even though I’m an American, I’m a 100% Norwegian American and do celebrate with my Norwegian friends and family.

Happy Syttende Mai

I have a traditional Bunad such as the one on this cup….although it no longer fits me. It was definitely from the pre-childbirth days.

I still fit into these sølje though. *grin*



Sølje, which translates roughly to spoons, are traditional brooches women wore at the collar of their white bunad shirt. Mine are shamefully tarnished.

I even bought a bunad for mini-me when she was about 2. She was very unhappy with me when I put it on her to get a photo before she outgrew it.

Bunad_9-1-05 002

Oh how the time has gone!! Speaking of which… J got his drivers licence yesterday!  Wowsers!!

Errands are on my list today and a couple projects that are works in progress.

What are you doing today?

On Wednesday I was on a mission to get all of my errands complete before the snow then wicked cold snap was to hit. I went 11 places in just under 4 hours. Shockingly I didn’t spend a bunch of money either. I was hitting all the loss leader deals at various stores while still getting the essentials to last into next week. I wasn’t even planning on going to Michael’s but since I was just down the street from it I decided to check out the 80% off all Christmas deals.  I picked up the needed supplies to make a couple of wreaths.

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

Since we are putting away all of our Christmas decor today, it was now or never next year for wreath making. So I gathered my supplies and set to work.

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

I also had to find a video tutorial on the process of creating a deco mesh wreath.

This one worked for me.

What I didn’t comprehend was just how huge this was going to be!

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

It became painfully obvious that the scale of the elements I had purchased would be completely wrong.

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

I added some ribbon…and what appears to be a nice bow in the photo. Nope…just shoved the rest of the ribbon in there for storage until I can find someone to help me with the bow. Did I mention how much I suck at making bows!?! I called my crafty neighbor for help and evidently she lacks that skill as well. I’m thinking with the addition of a proper bow and perhaps some plastic Christmas balls this would work for an outdoor wreath.

Next I set to work on a winter themed wreath. Something to take you through until Easter.

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

Did you notice the price sticker on the deco mesh…? Goodwill $2.99 and I used a 25% off coupon so it was really $2.24, sweet! The wreath base was purchased previously when I made my burlap wreath. I started out and realized that the green wire base was showing through in a very unflattering way. First I doubled the number of pipe cleaners on the base but the green still showed through. It needed to be white.

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

Lucky for me, the temps were hovering around freezing yesterday so I was able to give the base a quick shot of paint in the garage.  Honestly, I’m surprised at how quickly it dried. I was really worried since the can said not to use below 55°F.

Isn’t it pretty!?!

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

I was making it for a gift but it looks so good on my front door that I think I’m keeping it. Shhh…

Deco mesh wreaths | Halle's Hobbies

I love the iridescent shimmer in the mesh. Perfect match to a cold winter day.

Do you decorate for “winter” to carry through until St. Patrick’s Day or perhaps Easter?

As I started thinking ahead towards the new year and all it has yet to bring,  I decided it was time for a bit of reflection before letting go of 2015. Briefly my thought was, “Not much happened this year” and then the memories started to filter through.

This year, collectively, our family has had the following…in no particular order:

knee surgery

small kitchen fire

resort vacation

night classes

new driver

honor choir audition

wacky injuries including a 911 call

volleyball camp

computer programing


new (to us) vehicles

job interviews

neighborhood campfires

published article

mother/daughter retreat

choir concerts

deans list

student council

phase 2 braces

and a new teenager(just yesterday)

Whew! That’s quite a list even without the minutia of everyday life and events I’ve likely forgotten or perhaps blocked out. 🙂


So how did I do with my word of the year?

FOCUS | Halle's Hobbies

Not so great, honestly.  I can’t say I entirely failed on my word. I did focus on my family when issues arose throughout the year. I had the intention of focus on myself and what I needed and wanted out of life with this word. But really when I think about it, focus on my family is the reason I am still a stay-at-home mom the majority of the time. I was gifted with a wonderful life and family. One that appreciates the gift it is that I am home most days to take care of the little things. Perhaps my thoughts on my success with focus were a little flawed, My focus was just where it was meant to be last year.

Happy New Year! Be safe.



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