Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Tidings Of Hodgepodge Joy

Yep. Still here. Still hodgepodging while we wait for the world to regain some sense of normalcy. It's been fun to reconnect with so many of you who I knew only through this weekly link up. Thank you for making Wednesdays in 2020 merry and bright. 

If you've answered this week's questions add your link at the end of my post. It's nice to leave a comment for the blogger linking before you too... 'tis the season...

Here we go-

From this Side of the Pond

1. Here we are entering the last month of the year 2020. 2020!! Every year The Oxford English Dictionary publishing team chooses a word that captures the general mood of the year we're leaving behind, or the one word that will leave a lasting impact on the world at large. This year they needed sixteen words in order to cover the whole enchilada. 

While two of the other major dictionaries selected pandemic as their word of the year, Oxford came up with a long list including-bushfire, impeachment, acquittal, coronavirus, COVID-19, lockdown, social distancing, reopening, Black Lives Matter, Cancel Culture, BIPOC, mail-in, belarusian, moonshot, net zero (read more about each word here)

Of the words listed which ONE would you say should be in the number 1 spot? Which word/phrase on this list would you be happy to never hear again? 

If I have to pick one for the top of the list I'm going with coronavirus. I know we tend to call it COVID these days, but corona was how the virus was first known, and how I think of it still. 

The second part of this question is easier than the first. Which word would I be happy to never hear again? I choose D) all of the above.  If pressed I'm going to say the phrase 'social distancing' grates, but the actual concept of 'cancel culture' really grates. 

2. What one word from your own list of words describing this year sums up/best reflects your 2020? Tell us why. 

Trust. 

Wait I need two words. 

Trust and control. 

If this year has taught us anything it's how little we control. We know this, but we live our lives as if we're running the show until BAM! some crazy virus turns the universe on it's ear. So very many unknowns all these months later, and we struggle with the not knowing maybe most of all. 

When I look back over my life I can see it has always been during times of great stress, change, and disappointment that God reminds me He is faithful. I can trust that what surprises me does not surprise Him.  While it sometimes feels the world is spinning like a top He's got this. 

The pause this strange year has ushered into our normal routines and busy-ness was a fresh reminder He's the One in control. The One who changes seasons, tells the ocean where to stop, and commands the morning to appear knows all about what's been and what's to come. And He is trustworthy. 

3. Do you like peppermint? Peppermint mocha, a candy cane, peppermint bark, peppermint tea, York Peppermint Pattie, peppermint ice cream...of the peppermint treats listed, which one is your favorite? Will you bake anything featuring peppermint this holiday season? 

I do like peppermint, in moderation of course. I never cared for the flavor as a child, but in recent years it has become one of my holiday favorites. Of the peppermint treats listed I'm going to choose the ice cream, especially if it's homemade. I bake a peppermint snowball that is made with crushed candy canes and they're one of my must-haves as far as Christmas cookies go. 

4. Besides Christmas, what do you associate the color red with? How about the color green?

I associate red with danger, a warning of sorts. The word STOP came instantly to mind. 

Green for me shouts the great outdoors and it's one of my favorite colors. 

5. Is your tree up? Real or artificial? Is your house decorated? Is your shopping done? Started? Wrapped? On a scale of 1-10 with 1 being Scrooge-like and 10 being Buddy the Elf, how's your Christmas spirit? 

Our trees are partially up. The ornaments are in place but the trees still need a few bells and whistles. My house is the same, but it's getting there. It normally takes me about a week to get things the way I want them in terms of decorating. Our trees are artificial this year, but we love a real one too. 

My shopping is not done but I'd say it's more than 50% complete which is typical for how I do Christmas. I've wrapped one present, something I sent home with my mother-in-law, so there is also a  lot of wrapping to be completed. 

How's my Christmas spirit? I'm at about a 5 right now, but once the boxes are put away it will be a notch or two higher. 

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Hubs says I post this song every year and he's right. The carol was never my favorite as a child, but this particular version is haunting and beautiful and has become one of my favorites. The lyrics are so timely, and could have been written in 2020 instead of 1863. 

May your hearts be full of peace and hope this Advent season-


Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 397

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog, then hop back here tomorrow to add your link to the party. See you there! 

1. Here we are entering the last month of the year 2020. 2020!! Every year The Oxford English Dictionary publishing team chooses a word that captures the general mood of the year we're leaving behind, or the one word that will leave a lasting impact on the world at large. This year they needed sixteen words in order to cover the whole enchilada. 

While two of the other major dictionaries selected pandemic as their word of the year, Oxford came up with a long list including-bushfire, impeachment, acquittal, coronavirus, COVID-19, lockdown, social distancing, reopening, Black Lives Matter, Cancel Culture, BIPOC, mail-in, belarusian, moonshot, net zero (read more about each word here)

Of the words listed which ONE would you say should be in the number 1 spot? Which word/phrase on this list would you be happy to never hear again? 

2. What one word from your own list of words describing this year sums up/best reflects your 2020? Tell us why. 

3. Do you like peppermint? Peppermint mocha, a candy cane, peppermint bark, peppermint tea, York Peppermint Pattie, peppermint ice cream...of the peppermint treats listed, which one is your favorite? Will you bake anything featuring peppermint this holiday season? 

4. Besides Christmas, what do you associate the color red with? How about the color green? 

5. Is your tree up? Real or artificial? Is your house decorated? Is your shopping done? Started? Wrapped? On a scale of 1-10 with 1 being Scrooge-like and 10 being Buddy the Elf, how's your Christmas spirit? 

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

A Hodgepodge Of Thanksgiving

Welcome to another edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge. If you've answered this week's questions add your link at the end of my post. Be sure to leave a comment for the blogger linking before you because everyone is grateful for comments. Here we go-

From this Side of the Pond
1. It's Thanksgiving week in the US of A so let's talk turkey. And by turkey I mean the elephant in the room because it's still 2020 and our blogs are a record of sorts of the times in which we live. 

Do you live in a state (or if you're outside the US, a country) that's instituted restrictions on the size of gatherings in your own home? What do we think about this? 

No I don't live in one of those states. I think its fine for health officials to offer recommendations about gatherings, but states saying fines will be issued and police will come knocking are in my opinion, overreaching. A lot. 

I'm not someone who thinks the virus is a hoax and hubs and I have made the decision to limit travel and group activity. We wear masks without complaining for shopping, hair cuts, and appointments. That being said cities are literally burning to the ground and we're going to send the police after families having Thanksgiving dinner together?

I find the current level of hypocrisy in our country to be mind-blowing. People can protest in the literal thousands, but businesses with social distancing measures in place can't open? Large scale funerals for the more well-known are celebrated but you can't sit beside a dying parent? Police cannot intervene in the rioting but can knock on your door if you have eleven people around your dining room table? 

This explains why at least one half of  the people in our country are so angry. Add to that all the social media scolding and shaming and it's no wonder the pot is boiling over. 

Personally I'm not in favor of shutting down the economy, and I think everyone needs to make the best decisions they can given their own particular circumstances. There are many factors that go into these decisions, a family members isolation and mental health being just one. Oftentimes these factors cannot be known or assessed from an online photograph or Facebook post so maybe less judgement of that would be a good place to start. 

Will some people make unwise decisions? Absolutely. I think we've learned after 200+ years as a nation, some things cannot be legislated. Most people I know are considerate of others and are trying their best to do the right thing for their circle of connection. God bless America, land of the free...

2. Let's move in a cheerier direction. Will there be corn on your holiday dinner menu? How so? Cornbread-corn pudding-corn chips and dip-cornbread dressing/stuffing-corn chowder-or regular canned, frozen or fresh corn in a bowl...which of the 'corns’ listed is your favorite? 

There will be corn pudding on our Thanksgiving table. Since my plan was to simplify the menu a bit I asked hubs and my mother-in-law what would be the one side dish they'd most like to have and my mother-in-law chose corn pudding. I normally make corn pudding for holiday meals only so I'm glad it's on the menu.  

Of the corns mentioned cornbread dressing would be tops on my list. It's another dish I only make at Thanksgiving and sometimes Christmas. 

3. What is there a cornucopia of in your home, job, or life currently? 

Cookie dough? I have buttercreams waiting to be dipped, chocolate crinkles waiting to be baked, and shortbread ingredients waiting to be mixed, rolled and decorated. 

4. Have you ever quit something (such as a habit, a food, a time-sucker, a relationship) cold turkey? Is there something you need to quit cold turkey? 

A while back I quit french fries cold turkey. I just decided they were something I did not need to eat and I quit eating them. I have fallen off the wagon a teensy bit, but am back at it.  I'm sure this is a ridiculous answer but it's the one that popped into my brain first so I'm going with it. 

5. Share a favorite verse, quote, saying, or song lyric relating to gratitude. 

"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things."  Philippians 4:8

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

HappyThanksgiving Hodgepodgers! I'm grateful for our every Wednesday meet up...

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 396

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog, then hop back here tomorrow to share answers with all the turkeys playing along. See you there!

1. It's Thanksgiving week in the US of A so let's talk turkey. And by turkey I mean the elephant in the room because it's still 2020 and our blogs are a record of sorts of the times in which we live. 

Do you live in a state (or if you're outside the US, a country) that's instituted restrictions on the size of gatherings in your own home? What do we think about this? (keep it classy folks)

2. Let's move in a cheerier direction. Will there be corn on your holiday dinner menu? How so? Cornbread-corn pudding-corn chips and dip-cornbread dressing/stuffing-corn chowder-or regular canned, frozen or fresh corn in a bowl...which of the 'corns’ listed is your favorite? 

3. What is there a cornucopia of in your home, job, or life currently? 

U4. Have you ever quit something (such as a habit, a food, a time-sucker, a relationship) cold turkey? Is there something you need to quit cold turkey? 

5. Share a favorite verse, quote, saying, or song lyric relating to gratitude. 

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Monday, November 23, 2020

Monday Morning Pre-Game Roundup

Good Monday morning! It's going to be a beautiful day here, the roofers are coming to start the re-shingling, my house is one part Thanksgiving, two parts Christmas, and there is so much to be grateful for as we head into this holiday season. 

Some of you are already there. Smack dab in the middle of full blown Christmas. I was watching an instagram story this morning and a young wife was stressing about 'only having her tree done' and nothing else and how she was feeling so behind. Dear mamas everywhere... it's November 23rd. If your house isn't picture perfect ready for Christmas right now you are NOT behind. 

The internet can make you feel all sorts of things that aren't true, right? 

Anyway, it's 2020 and I say if you're sipping eggnog round your fully decked out tree before Thanksgiving arrives, or if you opt to forgo any decorating at all this year, that is A-OK. If there's anything 2020 has taught me it's to focus on the heart of a thing and not the bells and whistles. 

A Saviour is born is the heart of the thing. 

Hubs picked up his mama yesterday and she's here spending Thanksgiving week with us. I'm not going to bother inserting the 2020 caveat that she's been home and we've been home and it's fine for us to be together. Except I guess I will mention it because someone will likely feel the need to comment on it if I don't. People have lost their minds over this virus and pretty much everything lately. 

I always really enjoy this week of Thanksgiving. There's a sense of anticipation drawing us into Advent, and family, no matter how large or how small, gathered round my dining room table is pretty much my favorite thing in the world. 

This week we'll work a holiday jigsaw puzzle, begin the Christmas baking, and decorate our tree. We'll set the table with the fancy china and feast on turkey with all the trimmings because that's what we enjoy. 

Also, maybe not all the trimmings. I'm trying to keep it a bit simpler since there's just the three of us here this year. And I'm also thinking I don't need to indulge in a carbpalooza with a wedding right around the corner. Just sayin'. 

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday and while it's sometimes overlooked in the ever increasing chaotic frenzy of all things Christmas, I love this late November pause. I love this day that turns our hearts toward all we have, not what we don't. Toward home and food and family and finding much to be thankful for.

Yes even in 2020. 

Maybe especially in 2020.  

"For the beauty of the earth, For the beauty of the skies, For the love which from our birth, Over and around us lies, Lord of all to thee we raise, This our hymn of grateful praise."

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

The Happiest Hodgepodge On Earth

Welcome to another edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge. If you've answered this week's questions add your link at the end of my post, then go say howdy to your neighbor. Here we go-

1. It's Mickey Mouse's birthday (November 18)...happy birthday Mickey! He reads here, right? Have you ever been to Disney, any of the parks at all? Are you a Disney superfan or something less than that? They're open right now so tell us, would you go if you had the time/money/a free trip?

I've been to Disney World and Disneyland Paris, but never Disneyland California. It's been a number of years since I've been to any of the parks, but hopefully when my grandsons are a bit older I'll have a chance to see the magic again through their eyes. I shared some of our Disney memories in a post linked here, and reading it back just now made me wish the world was normal, my grandkids weren't an ocean away, and a trip to Disney World was on the calendar. 

I enjoy the parks, but am not a superfan. I'm not someone who wants to go every year, but for sure wouldn't turn down a free trip either. And I soak it all up when I'm there. 

2. Your favorite place to go when you want to be quiet as a church mouse? Would those who know you well describe you as more churchmouse or perhaps more like mighty mouse? 

When I'm looking for quiet I head to one of our porches. This time of year especially the lake is quiet and I love the view, a fire in the fireplace or in the fire table, a blanket on my lap, and a good book. Or a good nap. Or both. 

As far as which mouse? I think I'm a bit of both. 

3. The day before Mickey's birthday happens to be National Homemade Bread Day. Did/will you celebrate? Do you bake your own bread? Last time you had hot out-of-the-oven homemade bread? What's your favorite kind of bread? 

I used to bake bread on a pretty regular basis, but not so much these days. I try not to eat a lot of bread. I had homemade hot-out-of-the-oven bread a little over a week ago. My neighbor brought me a loaf of her sourdough and it was scrumptious. I took half the loaf to my sister and brother-in-law because momma of the bride does not need to eat an entire loaf of homemade bread. ahem. 

My neighbor is going to bring me some starter and I'm excited to make my own sourdough loaves. I plan to wrap them up and share with friends and neighbors though because see paragraph above.  

It's hard to choose a favorite bread, but I do love a sandwich on rye. I might say my absolute favorite bread is homemade cinnamon, lightly toasted please.   

4. What's something you might say is 'the greatest thing since sliced bread'? 

Not to be a broken record here, but Facetime is pretty much the greatest thing since sliced bread. Maybe even better than sliced bread. 

5. Let's keep the gratitude theme we started last week rolling on through November. Share with us five little things you're grateful for today. Small blessings. One catch-they all must start with the letter T. Gotta keep us thinking, right? 

turning leaves
Thanksgiving memories
tiny handprints
afternoon tea 
a warning instead of a ticket

6. Insert your own random thought here. 

Who's watching the newest season of The Crown? Your thoughts so far? I think the program is so well done, but I do wonder if the royals watch? And I wonder how accurate some of the Diana storyline is? If it's even close to accurate it's awfully sad. 

Also I miss England. 
Carry on.


Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Hodgepodge Questions-Volume 395

Here are the questions to this week's Wednesday Hodgepodge. Answer on your own blog then hop back here tomorrow to share answers with the universe.  See you there!

1. It's Mickey Mouse's birthday (November 18)...happy birthday Mickey! He reads here, right? Have you ever been to Disney, any of the parks at all? Are you a Disney superfan or something less than that? They're open right now so tell us, would you go if you had the time/money/a free trip?

2. Your favorite place to go when you want to be quiet as a church mouse? Would those who know you well describe you as more churchmouse or perhaps more like mighty mouse? 

3. The day before Mickey's birthday happens to be National Homemade Bread Day. Did/will you celebrate? Do you bake your own bread? Last time you had hot out-of-the-oven homemade bread? What's your favorite kind of bread? 

4. What's something you might say is 'the greatest thing since sliced bread'? 

5. Let's keep the gratitude theme we started last week rolling on through November. Share with us five little things you're grateful for today. Small blessings. One catch-they all must start with the letter T. Gotta keep us thinking, right? 

6. Insert your own random thought here.