Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Party like it's 1976!

Some of y'all have no idea what that title means. You weren't around in 1976. Lucky for you in 2014 we have Google, so you can go find out.

Well here we are-Volume 200 of the Wednesday Hodgepodge. I've taken a week off here and there so we've actually been at this since early November, 2010. Kudos to us! Let's have a giveaway! You'll find all you need to know about that in today's random thought, which is #8 for those of you visiting here for the first time.

Thank you for making Wednesdays on From This Side of the Pond a little bright spot in the blogosphere. I love the way we're different, but the same. We come from different parts of the country and the world. We're marrieds, singles, grandparents, Generation X'ers, Y's and Z'ers too. We're country mice and city slickers. We love to travel and we love to stay home. We love our pets and our gardens and our air miles. We love to cook and we hate to cook. We read, write, craft, run, and do a hundred different things in our individual lives, yet we're connected by this seemingly light, but oftentimes surprisingly deep, little meme called The Wednesday Hodgepodge.

And for that I'm grateful.

Every week as I write the questions I answer them in my head. My brain instantly heads in a particular direction and I'm always amazed when I read around and see how someone else went in a whole 'nother direction. I love that. I love the way your answers make me nod my head in agreement, or consider something from a different point of view. The Hodgepodge is good for us I think, and I thank you for being a part of the neighborhood.

While most of us have never met in person, we're still a community. I have been encouraged, prayed for, challenged, and entertained by you here each week, and isn't that what community is all about? Hodgepodge on Hodgepodgers!

 1. What is something in your life right now that feels a little 'hodgepodge'?

I'm not my usual organized self in terms of Christmas this year, but I'm giving myself a little grace and leaning in to the meaning of the season.

2. What does 'peace on earth, goodwill to men' mean to you?

Such an angry place Planet Earth is these days. Have we lost our ability to be nice? I bet we could start there...with everyone being just a little bit kinder, a little less distracted, a little more gentle in our interactions, a little less harried, a little less determined to have an opinion heard no matter what.  

I think that refrain as it's written in the book of Luke offers hope to those who believe the baby in the manger is God's only Son, the Savior of the world, the Prince of Peace. 

3. Which edible treat are you most looking forward to sampling this December?

This is a good question because I have a mother of the bride dress to wear in January. Maybe I need to tape that reminder to the cookie plate! I do love a homemade Christmas cookie with my cuppa, but I just can't make that a daily habit this December. 

4. It's that most wonderful time of the you agree, and if so why is it wonderful?  If not, what would you say is the most wonderful time of the year?

It's one of the most wonderful, how about that? For me, I really love the autumn, and autumn ushers in this season (hey, technically it's still autumn!) I think 'the most wonderful time of the year' begins in the days leading up to Thanksgiving and lasts through the first of the year.

5. What was the last word you looked up in a dictionary (actual or online), and why?

Community.  To know why, glance back at that whole big long blurb in my intro above. Obviously I know the definition of the word, but sometimes I like to see what the dictionary says. The nuances and variation if you will.  

6. Besides a Christmas tree, what's your favorite thing to decorate this time of year?

I really enjoy decorating the mantle, and I also love changing out the apothecary jars that sit on my kitchen island. 

7. Share one thing you've learned (about yourself, people, or anything at all) in the Wednesday Hodgepodge, or through blogging in general.

I've learned quite a lot in the Hodgepodge. Sometimes its in researching questions, sometimes it's something someone shares in their answer. Hodgepodgers are a wealth of information on a wide variety of topics.  

In general I love blogging because blogging helps me pay closer attention to the lovely little things in my day and in my life.  

Also, in spite of all the negativity attached to social media, this little random meme has been so comfy cozy. It's like a happy little coffee break in the middle of my week, and I always look forward to catching up with you all here. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

So I have a fun little giveaway to announce today to help celebrate all our words here on Wednesdays.

Here's the deal-

To enter, leave a comment on this post. Easy peasy. And just for fun, if you can find it, list the date you first played along in the HP. 

To be entered twice, leave a comment on this post, and along with your comment, submit a question for a future Wednesday Hodgepodge. The question cannot be strictly yes/no style. If it's a yes/no question at least add the words 'why?' or 'please explain'. Also, the question has to be new to the Hodgepodge, something I've never asked here before. 

What do you win? In keeping with the spirit of the Hodgepodge you'll receive seven holiday related items and one random gift that has nothing at all to do with the holidays. I can tell you this of the holiday related items I had personalized and it turned out super cute. 

Entries must be submitted by noon (EST) Monday, December 8th, and a winner will be chosen the old fashioned way. I'll throw all the participants names into a hat and have my hubs draw one. 

The winner will be announced in this same random space next Wednesday (12/10), when we'll be back here for Volume 201. 


  1. Hi, Its my first time here and I decided to participate as I was posting my 350th blogpost and this has always interested me. So the first day I participated is 03 Dec 2014. p.s I was born in 76 so lets PAAAAAARTYYYYY!

  2. "The hodgepodge is like a happy coffee break"- Agreed! Nice way to spend a half hour, saying hi to those in this linkup :)

  3. I was a Hodgepodge reader long before I decided to dip my toes into the pond. Is it possible that it was just March of this year when I entered my first Hodgepodge powwow? You are right, it is very much like a cozy coffee break and I enjoy all the Hodgepodgers who participate. What a diverse group we are, and yet I feel like we're all pals.

    So here's a question to consider for Hodgepodge Wednesday:
    What do you notice about birth order traits in your own children or among you and your siblings? or in a family of people you know. (might want to be careful with that one). ;-)

  4. I have been Hodgepodge-ing now since February 8th, 2012. I was able to go back and find it and re-read it. It washable love and Valentine's Day! My friend Diane Murray first told me about Joyce and her weekly questions so I decided to give it a try - and I have been checking in each week ever since. A question for a future Hodgepodge: At what age did you feel like a "grown-up?" And, what keeps you young now? What passion, collection, or wisdom do you hope to pass down to your children? I guess I ask this because I feel like I"m still a teenager trapped in an older body YET I would never want to go back to those days and re-live them. I am, yes, older and wiser… but I still want to have fun and be tuned into the world. I wold find other Hodgepodge answers interesting, and perhaps enlightening!

    1. I just re-read this post. Sorry for my typos!

  5. PS: Joyce I love your phrase "leaning in the meaning of the season"… I may use it f you don't mind! ( :

  6. Daughter asked when I was going to go shopping for my dress (mother -of-the -bride) my response-Definitely after Christmas--then I will still have some months to work off the calories.
    I always told daughters and now I tell my students-"If you can't say something nice, then don;t say anything at all." A smile and kind word cost nothing but is worth so much to someone who is really
    having a bad day.

    1. When is your daughter getting married? I"m a Mother of the Bride on April 25th - and I still need to dress shop too.

  7. Joyce, I've said it before, and I'll say it again--you have a way with words! You summed up my thoughts about the Hodgepodge so well in your opening paragraphs! I found myself nodding my head in agreement :) Again, I can't think you enough for hosting this great meme. It's a bright spot in the middle of the week, that I've come to look forward to so much! I'm so glad you listened to those of us who encouraged you to take up this meme :)
    The give away idea you came up with, to celebrate 200 editions, is absolutely perfect, too! Thanks again, for all you do!

  8. Oh, what fun! I've been Hodgepodging since the beginning and have loved every single week of it. Celebrating with you today and wishing you a happy mid-week!

  9. Joyce, I think I responded to my first Hodgepodge in November 2013. I think you had some questions having to do with the color brown and how brown is a predominant color in November's foliage after the brilliant autumn leaves of September and October. I love the 'community' of Hodgepodge Wednesdays. Thanks for making this available to us!

  10. Thanks for a great giveaway and for hosting the Hodgepodge! It's been a while since I've been here but feels good to be back. My first Hodgepodge was May 18, 2011.
    I have the song "1999" by Prince in my head now. I know you wrote "Party like it's 1976" but I automatically starting singing (in my head) "Tonight we're going to party like it's 1999". I think that may lead to a hodgepodge question ;)

  11. I'm not sure if you've had this question before or not, but here it goes....What were you doing on December 31, 1999? What, if any, preparations did you make for Y2K?

  12. I've not joined in the Wednesday Hodge Podge, cuz I forget about it before I have already written something to post on I'll make a note to check in for the questions and try to link in! 200 is a lot.

  13. Morning, Joyce! Happy 200th! You have always made Hodgepodge such fun for all of us! It's been a wonderful way to get to know so many bloggers. I say we have our own convention one day...wouldn't that be a blast?! I looked back and I couldn't find the exact day I first participated in Hodgepodge, but I think it had to have been Nov./Dec. of 2010. So hard to believe! Thank you for allowing all of us to be part of Hodgepodge!

    Now, one question I'd like to submit for Hodgepodge...If you had a magic wand, what is one thing you would change about yourself and why?

    Enjoy your day, Joyce! :)

  14. Joyce, I love that you used the word 'community' in describing the Hodgepodge groupies!! I had to look back in my archives to find my first Hodgepodge on June 12, 2013. I don't see one prior to that. Took me awhile to join in, and now I am one of your biggest fans (yes, a groupie!). I'll just have my name in the hat one time, since I can't even begin to think of a good question for a future Hodgepodge (and you probably already covered it anyway!). Thank you for creating this community of souls around this weekly meme!!

  15. I posted the first time on November 10, 2010.

    I love what you do, week in and week out, with the Hodgepodge. And the Hodgepodge makes my Wednesdays complete (even though I haven't been able to post every single week you've done a Hodgepodge).

  16. Your sooo right in your description of a mid-week coffee break with friends. That's just what the hodgepodge is to me. I read along rather I've participated that week or not enjoying every minute. I've discovered some of the kindest most interesting people through this meme, and some full on kindred spirits as well. Soo enjoy it. I will be back if I think of a good question. I know I have had the thought before of....this would make a good hodgepodge question, but of course it escapes me now. Thank you soo much for this wonderful mid-week party, and now a give away as well. It did make me think of what I was doing in 1976. 21 years old, pregnant with my second child, and living in a small house behind a little airport....good days!

  17. I love Wednesdays because I love your blog. I look forward to answering your questions and have done since 2012 when I started my blog. Look forward to the next 200.

  18. Thank you so much for hosting Hodgepodge each week. It really is something I look forward to doing. My oldest daughter loves reading my answers and if I am running late posting will text me and say, "Where is your Hodgepodge?"

    A question ... Did you watch cartoons when you were a child? If so, which one was your favorite? If not, why not? Do your kids and/or grandkids watch cartoons now? What is their favorite?

  19. I looked back and I first participated in the Hodgepodge back on Nov. 10, 2010. Way back when it first started up. I did some other stuff for a while there and now I'm back. It's kind of nice to have something fun for the middle of the week. I like answering questions.

  20. Wow! The first time I participated in a Wednesday Hodgepodge was on April 27, 2011. I love the Hodgepodge because I have met some very nice friends through this community. I am continually encouraged and I really love knowing that I am not alone on this crazy walk called life. I agree with your sentiments about this being a cozy place and the perfect coffee break. Thanks so much for hosting this every week and allowing a place for all of us to feel at home.

    My question would be: I heard an actor talk about how he makes a conscious choice to talk to people in elevators. He chooses to connect, make eye contact and converse. He was talking about how we hardly look up at each other anymore and just smile. Do you talk to people/strangers when you're in an elevator or any other place where you might have to wait together? Why or why not?

  21. Not sure if my first comment went through :( I am on Mark's computer and after I typed it they had me sign into my account! Enjoyed your questions this week and the earth is a very sad place these days. I haven't been in the spirit but will definitely get my house done by December 24th!!! I will try to think of a question.......

    1. I cannot find a way to comment so I am piggy backing with Debby. My first Hodgepodge was Nov 17th, 2010.

  22. Question: If you were only allowed to keep one nic nac from your house what would it be?

    1. Here is my question: Favorite Christmas (holiday of any kind) memory...why? where was it? I hope this will count as my posts for you. I don't know what is wrong with my work computer.

  23. January 26, 2011 - that was my first Hodgepodge! What fun to go back and read them! Hmm - I'm thinking a book on "The Best of Hodgepodge" may be in the works, eh? I, too, love this little break in the week, a chance to connect with fellow Hodgepodge bloggers who have become friends due to our weekly visits - "Oh look, there's April! There's Zoanna! There's Cranberry Morning! etc" So much fun.

    And what a fun giveaway! Here's my Hodgepodge question: When you daydream, what do you daydream about? Be truthful!

    This question was asked during a Thanksgiving game our family played, and the answers were fascinating!

  24. Congrats on the 200th! I started playing February 13, 2013! Kinda funny to look back and read what my answers were. :-)

    Future question for WH:
    If you could plan a vacation anywhere - all expenses paid - where would you go, what would you see, and why?

  25. Thanks, as always, for sharing the Hodgepodge, Joyce. Yes, I remember the party that was 1976. Bicentennial everything. Thanks for taking me back to those red, white, and blue high school days.
    I first participated in the Hodgepodge on March 16, 2011. Top o' the mornin' to you! I am glad you didn't require actual participation in order to be entered, as I am on my third day with sweet 15 month old grandson, Noah, at my house. A busy toddler leaves no time for Hodgepodgin'. Lol.
    As for questions, since my daughter is expecting their second child in March (just a week before our youngest son's wedding. Yikes!), maybe a question about the best advice for new parents? Or best advice received from parents or grandparents? Maybe you've done that one…
    Another thought, since you have a wedding coming up, is to ask what is your favorite something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue in your home? Or what is the most 'unique' gift you have ever received? And since I'm old enough to remember 1976, I'm also too old to remember for sure if these have already been asked. Ha!
    Have a great week, and congrats on HP#200!

  26. Joyce, here are a couple of question suggestions for you:

    Have you ever celebrated Christmas (or any holiday) in an unusual way? If so, how and why.

    What is your favorite Christmas ornament, and why?

  27. Joyce, I was able to trace back to the first time I joined Hodgepodge to April 11, 2012. My title was "God, Hats, Mirrors, and Friends." I have so enjoyed being part of this community and I thank Lea at CiCi's Corner for inviting me to participate. I so appreciate the time you take to not only share yourself with us, but to allow us to share ourselves with others. Congratulations on achieving the huge 200 mark.

    I could not agree more with your answer for "peace on earth." We may not ever have true peace until the Lord reigns, but there are certainly things we can do to make our little part of the earth more peaceful.

    Again, thank you for doing your part in bringing us all together and for the peace you help bring.

  28. Oh man - that's right - have a dress to fit in after Christmas. That's the best motivation ever for not over eating through the holidays!

  29. I wish we even had a mantle. Not sure why they built this house without one. I do love outdoor decorations though! Hope your Thanksgiving was fantastic! Take care.

  30. Hi, Joyce!

    Imagine #200. Thank you so much for faithfully hosting this weekly meme.
    I noticed my first Hodgepodge post was February 9, 2011.
    I quit blogging for a few years and rejoined Hodgepodge in 2014.

    What a great idea for a give-away.
    Good luck to everyone!

    Merry Christmas!!

  31. What would make a book inviting to you, and what would be the perfect setting in reading said book?

  32. I began participating in the Hodgepodge on February 27, 2013, at the urging of my beloved SWMBO. I've been hooked ever since.
    My Hodgepodge question - "What about the United States makes you proud? What makes you ashamed? Why?"
    I must say that this is a clever way to get a bank of new questions. Well played Hodgepodge Mistress!

  33. After much searching, looks like I joined January 21, 2011. I always enjoy your questions and sure do agree with your assessment of what makes this a community right here in Hodgepodge Land.

    My question would be a simple homemaking one.

    "How often do you make your bed, and how do you like to make it (pull the covers all the way up over the pillows, or tuck the covers in around the pillows, or place all the pillows on top of the covers)?

  34. "What childhood games did you play" or "What ridiculous tales did you believe when you were young and impressionable"

  35. My first Hodgepodge was 10-31-12.

    Question idea:
    Do you have a fireplace in your home? If so how often do you use it?

  36. I love that response about how blogging helps you pay attention to the lovely things in life. So true!

    Future question...this may be a basic one, but " What are some goals you are setting for 2015, and in particular goals pertaining to blogging?".

    Happy Hump Day!

  37. I'm at a disadvantage as I'm 'working remotely' today so I can't easily go back to check when my first Hodgepodge was but I know it was in its infancy and might have been the very first one. I look forward to the questions every week! Even if I'm not able to answer them.

    My question.... When traveling, do you eat out at restaurants by yourself or are you uncomfortable doing so?

  38. Looks like the first time I played along was 9/5/12. I know I read along for quite a while before I really had the chance to jump in. Hard to believe it's been 4 years. Thanks so much for doing the work to keep this fun and...really...educational!

    And my question...'What's the first movie you remember going to see as a kid? It may have been at a megaplex, or a drive-in, or just granmda's house, but was it a Disney movie or something else? Did you enjoy it? Or was it too (boring, scary, long, etc) for you?

  39. My first Hodgepodge post was January 19, 2011! I love The Hodgepodge and the fact that Joyce gives us the kindling to start our conversation!

    As usual, I agree with many of your thoughts. Our world needs to be kinder, we need to decorate our mantles, I'm glad we are blog friends and I also feel "It's like a happy little coffee break in the middle of my week"!
    Thank you for all the time and energy you put into it!!!
    My question is " What was one of the best pieces of advice you have ever been offered? Who was it from? Did you take it?"

  40. Ok, I finally have thought of a question (hope it's not too late).

    When was the last time you tried something new? What was it and will you try it again?

  41. Life has not allowed me to join in the Hodgepodge much this year, but I still read and enjoy the questions. I also enjoy reading about your upcoming wedding events. Can't wait to see pics from the Big Day! I believe I started with the beginning of the Hodgepodge; we used to participate together in the Random Dozen.
    Here's my question(s): What's in the backseat/trunk of your vehicle right now? An alternative would be, what's on your coffee table or kitchen counter right now?

  42. Happy 200th, Joyce. Because of my friend Jhona O, I started on the hodgepodge on May 29, 2013. I don't know if this has been asked in the Hodgepodge but, "How did you find out about Wednesday Hodgepodge and what allured you to join in?"

  43. I like seeing your apothecary jars, too! You do such a great job with those!
    I've been with you since the beginning: 11/10/10!
    Here's the question: How tall are you? What are the advantages/disadvantages to your height?

  44. You know one thing that's so great about teaching in an elementary school? You get to get away from all the worldly negativity for at least 8 hours every day. And then there are all those sweet little hugs. :) My first Hodgepodge was 4/27/11. I think. That's the earliest post I can find anyway. A possible question for a future Hodgepodge (and I'm not even sure I wrote this out correctly): Would you categorize fear and doubt as failures or successes? Why? AND, could failure itself be considered as success? Very excited about the giveaway! And the wedding that is now right around the bend! :)

  45. Sorry to have missed the big 200th celebration. Work got in my way but I've been hodgepodging since July 2011.