Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Ringing In The Hodgepodge

Happy New Year Hodgepodgers and readers everywhere! So glad you stopped by for this end of the year random! It's never too late to participate...answer the questions on your own blog, then add your link at the end of my post. Please say hello to the blogger who links before you because that's what good neighbors do. See you in the new year!

Now here we go-

1.  Share a favorite moment/memory from the week of Christmas.

So many wonderful moments to consider, but I've narrowed it down to two. On the Tuesday before Christmas my girls and I spent most of the day baking together. 

We sipped tea in pretty mugs and we talked and laughed a lot too. Hubs was out all day so it was just us girls and I really cannot put into words the contentment I felt all day long.   

A second favorite memory would be sitting on a church pew on Christmas Eve with my family beside me, candles lit,  joining with all those gathered to sing Silent Night. The Christmas Eve service has become the best part of the holidays for me in recent years. Taking time to be still in the middle of all the activity happening this time of year helps put life back into proper perspective. 

2.  If someone wrote a book about your life based on the past year, what genre would it fall under? What would the title be?

What genre would it fall under? Maybe psychology-ha! In 2015 my oldest daughter got married and moved to the west coast, my hubs retired after 30 years with the same company, we sold our home in NJ, moved south (after a short temporary stay with my mom), bid a tearful goodbye to the best dog ever, and are currently in some cozy digs while we build a home from the ground up. 

Psychology it is. 

What would it be called? How about Roll With The Changes?

3. What made you feel patriotic this year?

Many things...the Star Spangled Banner sung before a game, a YouTube video of a soldier coming home, and anything at Arlington National Cemetery. Just before Christmas I saw a picture of wreaths placed on every grave there and my heart felt so full. 

4.  What experience from this past year would you like to do all over again?

Well it definitely wouldn't be selling a house-ugh! I think I'll go with the obvious answer here...

...Daughter1's wedding day. 

5. What song lyric sums up or is a reflection of your 2015?

This one-

Honestly this is kind of my theme song. 

6. On a scale of 1-10 how would you rate 2015? (10=stellar) Why?

I guess I'd say parts of 2015 were far better than a ten, but there were some 4's and 5's sprinkled throughout the year too. C'est la vie! 

7. What part of the upcoming year are you most excited about?

Do I really need to answer this one? Moving into our lake house! 

8. Insert your own random thought here. 

A few of you asked about my crafty Christmas project, one I was keeping hush hush until after the big day. I made a scrapbook for my's their love story in words and pictures. 

And a lot of stickers because I just couldn't stop with the stickers. 

The book has a plastic sheet over it because it needed to fly back to Washington State in a carry on bag, and I didn't want the pages to become torn or bent. I'm not going to post too much of the contents here because it's personal, but here's one half of a page-

They danced their first dance to George Strait's song, True. Most of the pages I've written on by hand, but for this one I printed the lyrics on my computer. I had so many cute candids and keepsakes from her showers, the various stages of planning, their rehearsal, getting ready on the day of, etc, and I wanted them to have the photos to keep. 

The book turned out beautifully and my daughter and son-in-law were surprised which makes it more fun. I really enjoyed putting it all together and I'm anxious to get back to scrapbooking some of our other family trips and photos I've neglected.

Happy New Year Everyone! 


  1. Joyce,
    First of all, I'm happy to hear that you had a wonderful Christmas, with all of your family gathered near!
    Next, I know your daughter loves and will treasure the scrapbook you made for her and hubby. I need to get back to doing that, too...
    Last, I know it's been a year of changes for you, too, and I admire how you've been able to stay positive and roll with the punches. Here's hoping that 2016 be a little calmer for both of us! I loved your song, by the way :) Happy New Year, and thanks for continuing The Hodgepodge!
    Kathy (from Reflections)

  2. What a good year y'all had! Love the scrapbook you made for Daughter1. What a nice gift!

  3. I knew what your best moment/memory would be! Same as mine! (: And, I love the keepsake book you made for the newlyweds!

  4. What a fabulous gift, Joyce, for your daughter and SIL. They will cherish it, I am sure. I laughed about the stickers. That sounds like me. :-) Sweet pic of your daughters on baking day. Nothing like having our kids around us, is there.

  5. Hope all things go well with the building of your home this year and that you'll get moved in sooner than later. Happy New Year!

  6. I think we have answered a few questions about the same....Great book for the newlyweds Have a Happy New Year!

  7. Oh wow Joyce! I love the album you made for your daughter.

  8. Awwww....I love the 'book'. Happy New Year Blessings to you.

  9. Happy New Year Joyce, looking forward to another year of Hodgepodging!

    Your Christmas project was such a sweet idea!

    2015 is going out on a sad note, we are heading over to Canada today for the funeral of Honey' niece.
    See you next year.

  10. I think we answered alike this week. Happy New Year!

  11. Sounds like you had a wonderful year. I bet I can guess what gift was your daughter's favorite!! Happy New Year and thanks for always doing a great job on Hodgepodge!

  12. Such a cheerful blog post today! Your daughters are beautiful and their aprons on baking day are such fun. The album you made for D1 and hubs looks really, really nice. Happy New Year to you, and thanks for all the Hodgepodge opportunities to connect with such great bloggers!

  13. Oh, my, what a labor of love! I've done a couple of such projects and they really are fun to do. But, I've resorted to more digital now and of course, it's not near as personal. Love that you had such special times with your girls this holiday season. Happy 2016!!!

  14. Hello Joyce,
    This was a great Hodgepodge. I read the questions Tuesday morning. I tried to think of a creative name for my memoir, I struggled all day. Ha! I really liked that question, fun. And your answer is a good one. :-)) Thank you for doing the Hodgepodge, I have enjoyed it and will be back in 2016!

    I love the album. A true treasure for the beautiful couple. I love the dancing photos.

    Best to you in 2016! Happy New Year!

  15. I was going to pick Christmas Eve Service too. Both my daughter and son didn't sit with us though. They sat with their friends since they were candle holders during the service. What beautiful tea cups. What is clipped to the top? Is that part of the cup or something else? I love all things tea :) Happy New Year!

    1. They are the tiniest sweetest little gingerbread houses made to sit on a cup. I couldn't resist. They came from Anthropologie, but I've seen them online too.

  16. Joyce, a lovely gift for sure, and some great questions for todays hodge podgers. Have a safe holiday celebration and a great 2016.

  17. Your 2015 is going to be my life very soon: husband's retirement, selling a house, buying a lake house and a wedding - within 3 years is my guess :-)

  18. Love your answers to #1. I need your Christmas Eve service. I still need to write about ours. I need to learn to roll with the changes. Love Phillip Phillips and that song of his. The photo album you made is beautiful. What a treasured gift to receive.

  19. I didn't think of little things like that being patriotic, but I'm like you...those things GET me.
    What a lovely scrap book you put together! I'm sure it is greatly appreciated.
    Home is an awesome song.
    Have a blessed and happy new year!

  20. Oh, a personal scrapbook is one of my favorite gifts of all time to give or receive. A labor of love, for sure, to create one, but the memories are precious. Looking forward to the new year of HP questions. I probably can't jump back in for a couple weeks as I'll be playing nurse.

  21. I like those tea mugs! I have a bunch of cute mugs here since we love tea so much. My favorite are the ones with silly jokes on them. Happy New Year!

  22. Love the photo of your girls. The teacups are darling, with the little houses on them. Sounds like you had a great time together. The scrapbook is lovely, and a wonderful keepsake for them. I love that you did many of the captions and memories in your handwriting. It makes the gift even more special. Happy New Year!

  23. Happy New Year Joyce. We both had weddings to look back on this year. Such joyful events and your scrapbook looks lovely. I'm sure they will treasure it.

  24. Happy 2016 Joyce. Looks like we have something in common. I moved from New Jersey also - albeit in 1975 from Toms River on the Jersey Shore. I miss living just a few block from the water. Been in KC since 1976.

  25. Now that I'm going to be Yaya, I'm working on a scrapbook for the new addition. I love what you did for your sweet girl. So glad y'all were able to spend Christmas together! We had one missing- it was their year to go to the other side for Christmas. In Indiana. But, we get the baby for his/her first Christmas. LOL

  26. I absolutely love your personal gift for your daughter. It will be cherished for the rest of her life. I think picking Psychology as your genre was a good choice. Happy New Year Joyce. Thank you once again for hosting!!

  27. Found your linky through Paula above so have joined in for the first time :) Loved the wedding scrapbook you made - wish I could be that clever! Super questions - thanks for hosting and Happy New Year :) Special Teaching at Pempi’s Palace

  28. Sounds like it's been a busy year! Everything house related is so stressful, it's worth it when all the finishing touches are finally in place and you can just sit back and enjoy it though. That scrapbook looks lovely too - such a special gift. :)

  29. The scrapbook is lovely and such a sweet gift!

  30. I am so sorry to hear about your beloved puppy. The loss of a beloved pet is always profoundly felt. Thank you for your kind words. Happy New Year to you and Hubs!