Thursday, December 31, 2020
Wednesday, December 30, 2020
The Times Square ball first dropped on December 31, 1907. It is 12 feet in diameter and covered with Swarovski crystals.
1. Despite the weirdness of this past year, was it still a good year for you anyway or not? I would say this year is ending on a good note. My husband was approved for his Social Security Disability. I feel like we have been fighting insurance companies for years and I am happy we had this outcome. I am still unemployed, but it is probably for the best since I am having to get x-rays and MRIs done on my foot. I need to find out what is going to be happening before taking another step to post job applications.
2. How will you spend New Years Eve? At home probably playing games with my son and daughter, and watching the ball drop. Hubby cannot really watch the shows much anymore because of the flickering and flashing. I couldn't get my Amarula here on time for New Year's, but champagne will have to do. The Minecraft server we play on is having a cute little fireworks session throughout the day to celebrate.
3. What do you do on New Year's Day? Is football part of the agenda? New Year's Day is basically any other day. We used to watch Football years ago, but we do not watch sports anymore.
4. It's a Scottish tradition to kiss at midnight. Do you keep that tradition? Does everyone get a kiss if you do? I share a kiss with my hubby! 😘
🥳🎉 Happy New Year!!! 🥂🍾
Monday, December 28, 2020
Sunday, December 27, 2020
Welcome to Sunday Stealing - hosted by Bev Sykes.
For Those Who Celebrate Christmas #2
White Lights or Colored Lights? Usually multi-colored.
Blinking Lights or Still Lights? We have ours set to a very slow twinkle. My husband cannot handle any type of blinking or flashing lights due to his TBI.
When do you open your gifts? Between 9am and 11am. Christmas morning. 🎁
Do you buy gifts for your pet? Yep. Doggo got a new rope toy with a tennis ball and the hairballs got little catnip mice toys.
Be honest: What's the worst gift you've ever gotten? Nope. No such thing, even if you do not like the gift that is given.
Have you ever traveled for the holiday? Not really. The closest we have gotten to holiday travel was when we went down to Galveston for Dickens on the Strand for two weeks at the end of November and into the first week of December.
Did you see Santa as a child? My mom always took me to see Santa. 🎅 Sadly, I did not follow this tradition. The first time we took our son, I thought Santa was going to have a heart attack. Due to our daughter having Autism, it really wasn't a good fit. We chose to view Santa from a distance.
Can you name all the reindeer? Absolutely!! Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and Rudolph!
Have you ever gone caroling? Yes. It has been a few years though. The last time was when I was Co-leader of our GS troop. Our girls went to a local nursing facility and sang for the residents and made Christmas cards.
Do you drive around and look at the Christmas lights? Every year on Christmas Eve (or the day before) - it's a tradition. LOL. We grabbed Sonic this year and took off to some of our favorite spots - like Luther Lake.
Have you ever left Santa cookies? Santa has cookies and milk set out for him every year, as well as a carrot snack for the reindeer. This year Santa got homemade Rice Krispie treats, too! 🍪🥕
Have you ever had a white Christmas? Um, Texas is not not really known for a White Christmas. In fact, I believe the last time we had an actual White Christmas on Christmas Day was in 2009.
Have you ever made a gingerbread house from scratch? From a kit? Both, and neither turned out like they should have. LOL! 😄
Be honest: Do you think the season is too commercial? Oh yes! When you have to start advertising in October for Christmas, it's for money - period.
Imagine you were going to create the quintessential holiday soundtrack -- which song(s) absolutely must be included? All the Christmas classics!
What are your Christmas pet peeves? Can we just celebrate Halloween and Thanksgiving BEFORE any Christmas stuff starts getting put out?? See? Commercialized!!!
Saturday, December 26, 2020
It's time for Friday Five! (I am a day behind!) LOL!
1. What did you learn in 2020? Um, I learned more about humanity and some of my fellow humans, the lacking of compassion and empathy, than I care to admit. Sad really. 😶2. What do you regret doing (or not doing) in 2020? I regret having to resign from new my job as Coordinator (I had only been there a couple months) because of a foot injury. I worked with quite a few amazing people and my bosses were pretty awesome. I am getting ready to have all these tests run, x-rays, and MRIs done come the first of the year. I am not looking forward to it at all.
3. What are you proud of doing in 2020? I am so thrilled to have been able to read more. I have been averaging a book a day almost since September. I definitely met my book challenge this year! 😁
4. Whom did you get to know better in 2020? Not really anyone. I am a homebody anyway, and most of my friends I talk to are online anyway.
5. What do you hope to accomplish in the remaining days of 2020?
Well, we only have a few more days left so I don't know what I can really accomplish in that time frame. LOL.
Friday, December 25, 2020
Wednesday, December 23, 2020
Tuesday, December 22, 2020
Welcome to Tuesday 4 (the legacy of Toni Taddeo kept in her honor and memory).
Thanks to Annie for today's four questions!
A Merry Little Christmas
Christmas is fast approaching for millions of people...
1. Do you have a favorite Christmas carol and if so is there a particular version you especially like? The classics like Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, Jingle Bells, We Wish You a Merry Christmas, etc.
2. Do you have a special dinner for the holidays? What foods are included? This really depends on who we are getting together with and things have changed drastically in the last few years. We will be celebrating at home this year (again) and having a spiral ham, homemade mac n cheese, veggies, dinner rolls, and definitely desserts, which will be including lemon meringue pie! 😋
3. Holiday movies ... which do you like to watch? I make it a habit to watch It's A Wonderful Life every year while wrapping gifts. I have been watching some really cute Christmas movies on Netflix here lately. Every year we watch Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer and Frosty. It's a Christmas favorite, especially for our daughter, who was born the day after Christmas.
4. What traditions do you continue to keep year after year for the holidays? I love history and tradition, so I have always tried to keep a few things going that I experienced during childhood. Mail out Christmas cards. Yes, I still buy stamps and mail out cards to family and friends. There is just something more personal about a card. Planning one evening to go look at Christmas lights. My parents always took us out to go view the abundant decorations. One in particular was this lake where my grandparents used to live. They always decorated with beautiful lights. We still drive over there. An Advent calendar countdown to Christmas Day. My daughter loves to change the date daily. Listen to Christmas music. While some of the newer versions are not extremely bad, I will always prefer the classics. Christmas stockings have always been a huge tradition and my mom didn't care how old we were. We still had a stocking every year. It was the first thing that I tore into Christmas morning. 🤗
Merry Christmas to you and yours!!! 🎄
Sunday, December 20, 2020
Welcome to Sunday Stealing - hosted by Bev Sykes.
What’s your favorite thing about the holidays? Celebrating with family and having dinner.
Do you send out Christmas cards and if so how many do you send? I have sent out Christmas cards for over 20 years and I intend to keep doing it. 😊 We still receive a few cards every year.
Be honest: holiday newsletters. Love ‘em or hate ‘em? I don't do them, but sometimes I enjoy reading them. My parents used to get a holiday newsletter from someone in our family that we had never even met. I guess after several years, you can say you know them. LOL!
Be honest: photo cards. Love ‘em or hate ‘em? I prefer an actual card, but I have sent out a couple. I always get photo cards from my nieces! I think the younger generations are more into this.
How soon do you start shopping? I always tell myself I am going to start earlier, and I never do! There have been a couple of times where I found a really good deal after Christmas, and kept it for a gift the following year.
Real or fake tree? FAKE! I love the smell of pine, but I do not enjoy the dry needles in an indoor environment or the cleanup.
When do you put up your tree? We usually put up our tree the week after Thanksgiving, but we got a bit sidetracked this year. LOL!
When do you take down your tree? Normally, about a week into January. Last year, our tree stayed up through March and I actually decorated it for St. Patrick's Day. 😂
Describe your typical tree (size, decorations, type). Our tree is a slim 7ft pre-lit and usually decorated with rustic, vintage ornaments. I still have a few Christmas Coca Cola ornaments that my mom and I collected, and every year her Elvis ornament is put on the tree, too. I sure do miss my mom.
What do you top your tree with?
Do you put Christmas lights outside your house? Yep, every year! This year hubby constructed a couple of arches that we wrapped lights around and put the deer and sleigh under. We ran lights at the foundation of the house (we live in a pier and beam) since hubby cannot get up on the house any longer. We also have a cute little lantern post with two Christmas dogs sitting under it.
Is there a wreath hanging on your door? Yes! Tradition!
Do you hang up stockings? This is another tradition that I carried on from my mom. My mom used to fill stockings for us every Christmas! I still do this even though my kids are longer kids!
Your favorite Christmas Movie(s). Every year we watch Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer, Frosty, and It's a Wonderful Life!
Be honest: A Christmas movie you hate - Oh, there are quite a few of them out there and honestly, it would take too much time typing them. LOL!
Favorite Christmas Song(s) - Rudolph, Jingles Bells, Silent Night, I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas (it's still in the 60s here in Texas), Mary Did You Know, etc. Any classic Christmas song really.
Be honest: If I hear this/these Christmas songs again I will throw up - I do not really care for remixes, especially when these pop artists try to put their own spin on them.
Give or Receive? I enjoy both! 😉
Eggnog or Mulled Cider? Eggnog. We get all of our dairy products from Braums and they actually have some tasty eggnog. Top it with a bit of cinnamon and a stick and we are good to go!
Ham or Turkey? By the time Thanksgiving ends, I am turkeyed out! The last couple of years we have been having Christmas dinner with just me, the hubby, and our kiddos. We usually make a ham and all the fixns. In the past when we got together with hubby's side of the family, we all put together a huge Mexican spread.
The last couple of days have been quite exciting on Autcraft! Sam the Snowman was voted Most Traditional in the Build A Snowman contest! Yay! 😃 Everyone had some great Snowman builds and did an amazing job! The Hot Chocolate & PJ party was so much fun. We stood in line for our gingerbread cookies and hot chocolate, and then sat down on beds to "listen" to Broadcast read Twas The Night Before Christmas. Afterwards, it was time for pictures with Santa, maze games, and parkour!
This is one of the best Minecraft servers that I have played and AutismFather and the Admins are doing a fantastic job!
Friday, December 18, 2020
It's time for Friday Five!
1. Who made you laugh most this year? Well, considering that for most of the year I have been around mainly my hubby and my kids - it would have to be them. LOL! Although when I was working at Marshalls I did have quite a few very nice customers. 😊
3. What was the best movie or TV series you saw in 2020? Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir and Cobra Kai!!!
4. What was your favorite food discovery of 2020? Nothing really new. We have been out once to eat and that was for Father's Day back in June.
5. What’s something nice you purchased for yourself or received as a gift in 2020? Either game memberships or expansion packs for Sims 4. 😀
Sunday, December 13, 2020
1. Day 1 of serious isolation behavior. Aside from my outside job at this particular time, I am a homebody. I don't like to get out and go many places unless I know exactly what I am going out for, or a planned vacation.
2. First trip you had to cancel. We don't travel much, so no plans were cancelled.
3. Other trips canceled. If we are talking like vacations, no plans had to be cancelled.
4. Last trip out of town before isolation. Out of town?? LOL That would have been when we went to Galveston in December of 2018. Nothing this year.
5. Furthest from home since isolation. Only shopping, which is within ten miles of where we live.
6. Last Meal sitting in a restaurant before Isolation. That would have been in June when we went to Edelweiss (our favorite German restaurant) for Father's Day. They have always had awesome food, but because of the pandemic, it has changed everything. The menu had been downsized to less than half of what they usually serve, so we were unable to order what we usually get. Haven't been out to eat in a restaurant since.
7. How many books have you read? According to my challenge on Goodreads, I am at 38 out of my 50 books, but I know I have read a few more that I forgot to add. LOL! Reading is not pandemic related. I am already an avid reader. 😁
8. First event you didn’t attend due to virus.
We don't attend many events anyway, so this really hasn't impacted us.
9. Date and event of last over 200-person event. Yeah, that would have been when we went to Dicken's on the Strand in Galveston back in December of 2018. We don't get out much.
10. Last live music event. In June when we went to Edelweiss for Father's Day. They always have live German music and Helga plays the saw! Oh how I miss the old days!
11. Things you are eating more of since isolation. Pizza. Definitely pizza. LOL.
12. Things you are eating less of since isolation. Mexican food. We fix tacos, enchiladas, and hubby will make tamales every now and then, but we used to go out to eat every couple of weeks to a Mexican restaurant down the street.
13. What restaurants have you gotten take-out meals from? Zero. The point of going to a restaurant to begin with is the atmosphere and being able to eat there. I am not going to pay those prices for takeout.
14. Have you found yourself bored in isolation? Not at all. Except for the occasional outing, I prefer to stay home. I enjoy gaming, especially with my kiddos. I hang out with my hubby. I just binge watched Cobra Kai, and I am stoked for Season 3. I also can't wait until The Last Kingdom airs. Boredom is not an option.
15. Have you gained or lost weight? LOL! I have GAINED weight! It has been worse since I have a foot injury and cannot exercise how I am used to. Things are getting ready to change!!!
16. Do you drink alcohol? Yes.
17. If so, more or less in isolation? Same. I have a few beers every single night. 🍺
18. What entertainments have you explored? Nothing new. I pay for several game memberships already. I have Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, and Pureflix.
19. Gotten into anything new? Nope. LOL.
20. Have you done crosswords? Board bames? Jigsaw puzzles? Not really into crosswords or jigsaw puzzles, but we play board-games like CLUE, Monopoly, LIFE, as well as Minecraft UNO, Exploding Kittens, etc.
21. Have you cleaned out some cabinet, drawer, closet, etc. thoroughly? I am so sick of cleaning. /done! LOL!
22. Are you spending about the same amount of money? We are trying to spend less money considering I was one of tons that lost their jobs. I had finally found another one and had to quit because I couldn't be on my feet for more than four hours. I am hoping that once the holidays pass by, I will get to see my specialist. Praying!!!
23. Done Zoom, Facetime, etc. meetups? I am a tech junkie - but I despise Zoom, Facetime, etc! Ugh! I just don't like being on camera. But because of Covid, almost every doctor appt we have had has been by video. My daughter's therapy - video. I have an appt in a couple of weeks - video. Um, hello - I haven't been to a doctor in years because of no insurance and my first appts are video. smh. I need my foot examined and I don't think that can be done via video. LOL! I am so over this.
24. Had a social occasion with a small group of people you consider safe? Nope. Considering quite a few think wearing a mask is stupid and restricting their freedom, I would rather not be around. I don't know who you have come in contact with. No, I am very much avoiding people right now.
25. Did you vote? In Person? On Election Day? I voted in person and during early voting. I hardly ever go on Election Day if I can help it. 😉 If I can go to huge box stores like Walmart and Target, I am going to vote in person. LOL!
Saturday, December 12, 2020
Tuesday, December 8, 2020
Welcome to Tuesday 4 (the legacy of Toni Taddeo kept in her honor and memory) and hosted by Annie.
Let's talk about Gifts!
1. Whether it's Christmas, Chanukah or a birthday party nice gifts can be hard to pick out. Is there a safe go to gift you think will fit anyone? I believe it depends on the age of the recipient and how well you know them, and their interests.
2. Is wrapping a gift a necessary part of the excitement of giving and receiving? Yes! I always take the time to wrap gifts, stick on a cutesy bow, and grab a nice card. If I am using a gift bag, its gets extra ribbons on the handles and matching tissue paper. I don't mind how others do it upon receiving a gift - I am still just as excited to get something special!
3. What gifts given to you did you love the most? Lots of childhood memories come to the surface with this one, but the one that stands out in my mind the most was my pink Huffy bicycle that I got for Christmas when I was 8. I rode that thing everywhere - jumping ramps, hills, over water, and up curbs. I can't remember how many times my dad had to replace the tubes and tires. I was a tomboy!!! When I married and had kids, anything that my kids made was saved. I have bins of stuff from holidays and school.
4. In the O. Henry book The Gift of the Magi, a man sells his pocket watch to buy some beautiful hair combs for his wife's long hair but she has sold her hair to buy him a platinum pocket watch chain.
Have you ever saved long and hard to buy someone a special gift? Would you be okay with a holiday that didn't include gifts? Would friends and family understand? We normally have a certain amount set aside for Christmas, but occasionally we will go over a bit. My husband and I usually just get something personal for each other and we have always focused on the kids. Of course they are older now, but we still try to have a wonderful Christmas sharing gifts and celebrating. My mother-in-law has always been the type to want to have this HUGE Christmas with lots of gifts and food. Over the last several years it has become trying since he has a large family (most do not get along) and his mom has been trying to extend Christmas into several days just so everyone can celebrate. We have decided not to participate because honestly, the stress is just overbearing and between my daughter (who has Autism and just got officially diagnosed with GAD), plus hubby's TBI - they cannot handle being around that many people, even family. Nope, family doesn't understand. They think we are being selfish and antisocial.
Sunday, December 6, 2020
Best Things to Talk About
2. Have your parents influenced what goals you have? I would have to say my mom. She meant well, but she always made me feel like I would never accomplish anything.
3. What is a fashion trend you’re glad went away. Does anything ever really go away?
4. What word or saying from the past do you think should come back? LOL! It would take me all day to list words that should still be in use.
5. What do you bring with you everywhere you go? Water. I have to have a water bottle with me at all times.
6. Is there such a thing as a soul? Absolutely.
7. Is there life after death? I would like to believe there is. I guess I won't know until I actually experience it. My neighbor once told me that he wanted to be reborn a sparrow. He passed away in 2004, and now I have to wonder at every sparrow that I see if it is my neighbor coming to call.
8. Do you think there will ever be a third world war? Yes. Yes I do. There will be a war like we have never seen.
9. What smell brings back great memories? Fresh baked bread. I was born and raised in Fort Worth, Texas and oh how I miss the smell of Mrs. Baird's Bakery!! You could smell it for miles. It was absolutely wonderful!
10. How would you like to be remembered? For my honesty and kindness. As someone who would always be there, even when they were not there for me.
11. What kind of music are you into? The question should be what kind of music am I not into. 😁 My taste in music varies, but my favorite is Classical music.
12. What is the biggest surprise of your life? Homeschooling. I never thought of myself as being "the" educator, but when the public school system failed my daughter - it was time. This is my seventh year to homeschool, and my last. My son graduated in 2018 and my daughter is graduating a year early. The years go by too fast!!
13. If you could eat only one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be? Steak.
14. Where is the most awe inspiring place you have been? In July of 2018, I told my husband I was going to pick a place on the US map and we were going there on our next vacation. I chose Bangor, Maine, and that September we flew up there. I white-knuckled that armrest on both flights. LOL. But even the beauty flying over was enough for me to let go and look out the window. Those two weeks have stayed with me for the past couple of years and when the chance comes, we are selling what we have, and moving. I can still taste the crisp, clean air and when I close my eyes, I can see the pines and the beautiful colors in my mind. In four hours, you could be sitting in New Hampshire having lunch. In three hours, looking at Canada!! In an hour at the beach. Yeah, Texas is "blah" to me now and I despise the heat these days. It takes FIVE HOURS just to get to the Gulf of Mexico here in Texas.
I can't believe I was this close to PEI and I didn't have a passport. That would have changed travel plans in a heartbeat!!
Saturday, December 5, 2020
Zeddy streams the Player of the Week videos for the Minecraft server we play on - Autcraft. He always comes by to say hi to the Skylords! 😊
Friday, December 4, 2020
It's FRIDAY, which means it time for First Line Fridays hosted by Hoarding Books! So, grab your closest book, or scroll to it. 😀 My first line is:
The man stood in the shadows preparing for murder.
The Serpent Sword (The Bernicia Chronicles Book 1) by Matthew Harffy
Certain that his brothers death is murder, young farmhand Beobrand embarks on a quest for revenge in war-torn Northumbria. When he witnesses barbaric acts at the hands of warriors he considers his friends, Beobrand questions his chosen path and vows to bring the men to justice.
What are you reading? 🙂
This weeks Friday 5 - this is my first time participating, so here goes! 😉
1. What most recently made you feel elated?
My husband finally being approved for his Social Security Disability!!! The last several years have really taken a toll on our family.
2. Where is the slowest elevator in the universe?
ANY elevator is slow to me. LOL! I do not like elevators, and if I can take the stairs, I will!
3. When were you most recently in an airplane?
In September of 2018 when we flew to Maine. Is is absolutely beautiful and we are hoping to move one day soon!
Government. I don't care what level. I do not understand why everyone has to be so rude. There is absolutely no common courtesy these days.
5. What’s a good song whose title contains the word “sky?”
Pink Floyd's Goodbye Blue Sky and I cannot forget the Skye Boat song from the series Outlander!!! My daughter learned to play this song on her keyboard just for me and her name is Skye. 😍
Wednesday, December 2, 2020
I cannot believe it has taken me almost a month to complete a book! 😬 I usually average a book a day, but I was majorly side-tracked last month.
It's Wednesday and time for WWW Wednesday -Taking on a World of Words
The Serpent Sword (The Bernicia Chronicles Book 1) by Matthew HarffyCurrently reading:
Reading next: After a stunning victory against the native Waelisc, Beobrand returns a hero. His valour is rewarded with wealth and land by the king of Northumbria. He retires to his new estate with his bride only to find himself surrounded by enemies old and new.