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Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Category

book and quill penI’m generally not a fan of poetry, but I appreciate the art and how so many people can express themselves poetically. Me, not so much. I’m one of those people who, if it doesn’t rhyme, I don’t get it. (more…)

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holiday seasonAnother Thanksgiving has come and gone. Another end of the harvest season. Another end to everything orange and pumpkin and in with everything green and peppermint. That’s right, we’ve officially entered the fifth season – the holiday season. (more…)

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So, the holidays are officially over and 2017 is underway. I’d like to say thank you to all my readers for continuing to follow me into the new year. I hope I continue to bring a smile to your Mondays.

Let’s reflect back a couple of weeks and see how this Christmas stacked up. Because there are so many aspects to consider, I’m going to narrow my focus to one thing – Santa Claus. (more…)

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jan-calendar

It’s almost January – let the dieting, working out, eating healthier, spending less, drinking less, and other awesome goals begin! Here’s to a good two weeks of purging the old habits and staying focused on those resolutions. Mark my words, by the end of January there will be a noticeable decline in gym attendance and longer lines at the burger joint drive through windows.

Resolutions are wonderful; however, rarely attainable. Most people make the same resolutions every year or set such high estimations of their sticktuitiveness that they are setting themselves up to fail.

resolutions-list

I’ve never been a fan of resolutions. I have goals, sure, long term things I’d like to do or accomplish. But I don’t set out to start something new every January simply because it’s a new year. I always make it my resolution to make no resolutions. And guess what? I always reach my goal.

However, this year, I’m changing things up. I’m going to make some resolutions. I’m going to do some wild and crazy things this year. I’m not sure when, or where, or how, but I’ll blog of them when they happen. Stay tuned.

wild-thing

If you’re a resolution maker – kudos to you and good luck. If you need some ideas for some simple, attainable resolutions, may I suggest a new hobby? Check out the video below for an idea that might work for you.

Happy end of December dear blog followers! Here’s hoping 2017 is fabulous. And here’s to making goals you can stick to.

Do you make resolutions? Do you start every new year on a diet, determined to do better than last year? Are you searching for your inner wild child?

Word of the day: Saxicolous

Fun fact about me: I’ve grown fond of pecans since living in Mississippi.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2016. Video courtesy YouTube (Studio C)

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There’s nothing like a good pyrotechnics show. I’m not sure where these videos were taken, but . . . wow!

Enjoy!

Until next year – stay safe, be kind, choose happiness.

Word of the Day: Soutane

Fun fact about me: Seeing fireworks always makes me smile.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2015. Video courtesy YouTube.

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A lot has happened this year. My family felt the pangs of a cross-country move. My life changed significantly for the better. Terrorism, radicalism, school shootings, disrespect for authority, hit all time highs. Daily news reports made us weep.

If you’re still struggling with gift ideas amid all of this chaos, I offer the following suggestions:

Image courtesy Google Images.

Image courtesy Google Images.

Merry Christmas loyal followers and best wishes for a peaceful new year. May god bless you and keep you safe in the months to come. Be kind; to yourself and others.

Word of the Day: Remarque

Fun fact about me: If I could find the right picture, I’d get a tattoo.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2015. Image courtesy Google Images.

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Dear readers, I hope this year has been rewarding for you all, or at the very least that you’ve seen, or done, or learned something new from whatever experiences you’ve had over the past twelve months.

Whatever your plans are for ringing in the new year, I hope you stay safe and healthy.

New Year quote

I’m looking forward to an amazing 2015, to making new friends, to learning new things, and to exploring new adventures. Cheers!!

Fun fact about me: I’m usually home alone on New Years. (My hubby always has to work the holidays. But not this year!!!)

Word of the Day: Sobersides (perfect for this particular weekend!)

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2014.

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To all of my wonderful blog followers and friends, I wish you the merriest of Christmases, the happiest of holidays, the best of new years!

 

Xmas blessing 1

 

Here’s a video I found amusing. Enjoy!

 

 

Fun fact about me: Christmas is my favorite holiday!

Word of the Day: Roundel

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2014. Video courtesy YouTube.

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Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

How many times have we shopped, found something extraordinary and thought, “This is perfect for so and so?” (Hand raised high.) When this happens to me, I usually make the purchase right then and there, depending on cost of course. More times than not, when Christmas rolls around, I already have a small stash of “perfect” gifts waiting to be wrapped and delivered.

On the other hand, how many times have you gone shopping for something specific only to be shut down, robbed of your shopping enjoyment because you can’t find the “perfect” thing you’re looking for. I know, I know, Murphy’s law and all that, but seriously, isn’t that such a let down? How hard can it be to find that one simple thing?

Christmas is an already stressed time of the year. Folks are strapped for cash, time flies by, your husband eats the cookies you baked for your boss’s holiday party. It’s stressful. Add to that the pressure of finding “the perfect gift,” and it’s down right painful.

Now finding the “perfect gift,” can be nothing short of euphoric when you see the happy smile on the face of the recipient you love. It’s a high that I personally find very satisfying. But hey, I’m a giver. I love giving, especially when it’s done right.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

But how often have we found ourselves – settling? Buying something, spur of the moment, running out of time because it’s four o’clock on Christmas Eve and we still haven’t gotten anything for cousin Bob and he and his sleezy new girlfriend are coming over at six for drinks and we just know he’s going to bring us a gift so we have to get him something – (breathe) – and then we do the grab and go, dash home, wrap it up, present it to him in his stupid Christmas hat and goofy grin only to be rewarded for all of our trouble, angst and money with this:

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Don’t do the cousin Bob routine.

gift cardHere’s what I suggest – stop trying to find the “perfect” thing. Think about who you’re buying for and why. If you’re simply buying because it’s Christmas and the season dictates that you buy a gift – don’t do it. Nine times out of ten the recipient won’t want the thing you’ve settled for anyway. Just suck it up and get a gift card.

I know, gift cards are a cop out, but let’s face it, who doesn’t like gift cards? I like gift cards. Let’s me pick out something I really want or at the very least, something I need but no one will ever buy it for me because it’s a practical everyday thing that’s – well – not “perfect.”

Come on people – ease up on the pressure – enjoy the season. Stop trying for perfection and give from the heart. Sometimes a dozen cookies or a sweet bread wrapped in pretty paper are more appreciated than that bottle of bath gel you picked up from an end cap at the grocery store on your way to the check out line. I’ve often given the gift of my time and taken a harried and stressed out friend out for lunch in lieu of a gift. You can offer to clean someone’s house, or pick up their dry cleaning, or mow their lawn, or rake their leaves, or some other act of kindness instead of buying some silly and usually cheap thing. Time is money – spend it wisely. To some folks time is more precious than money. Who wouldn’t want more time? Well maybe a lifer in Folsom Prison wouldn’t want more time, but you all know what I mean. Right?

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

I’m not suggesting you stop giving gifts, I’m merely suggesting that if you can’t find that thing that’s “perfect” who whomever, try giving in another way. Make a home cooked meal and deliver it to your busiest friend on a busy weeknight so they can sit down and relax for a couple of hours with their family – maybe watch Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer or A Charlie Brown Christmas or It’s A Wonderful Life. You’d be surprised how something so small and easy to do can go a long way.

Xmas quoteSo happy holidays my friends. Relax. Put some thought into your giving. Stay safe in your travels and kind in your hearts, words and deeds. That’s why I love you all.

What have you done to show your appreciation to a loved on in lieu of giving a gift? Have any giving tips to share? I’m always open to suggestions.

Fun fact about me: I love to bake, especially this time of the year.

Word of the Day: Qiviut

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2014. Photos courtesy Google Images.

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Woman writing out cards

Well, it’s that time of year again. Time to decorate, bake, shop and, oh yes, send out Christmas cards. I really like sending out Christmas cards. Some of my friends are all crafty and creative and make their own cards. Check out these homemade beauties from my cyber pal Susie Lindau. http://wp.me/p1un5Q-15s

Here’s another one, it’s nuts but super rockin cool: http://wp.me/p1un5Q-1zY

Some of my friends send out annual family holiday “newsletters,” advising of all the family accomplishments throughout the year. They usually contain a photo or two.

Whether you send out cards or not, here’s a few “facts” I uncovered about the greeting card industry, and Christmas cards in particular:

card display in store

According to Greeting Card Association, 1.6 billion – yes that’s billion with a “b” – Christmas cards are purchased every year. Now purchased doesn’t mean mailed, but who buys and doesn’t send?

7 out of 10 card buyers consider greeting cards “absolutely” or “almost” essential to them.

Women purchase an estimated 80% of all greeting cards (big shocker there I know), spend more time choosing a card than men, and are more likely to buy several cards at once. (Well duh, that way you don’t have to make multiple trips.)

And did you know that there is an established set of rules associated with sending out cards? I know, right? Rules. Here’s what I discovered:

Xmas cards to be mailed

#1 Cards should be mailed out as early as possible, but not more than a week before Thanksgiving. (Before Thanksgiving? Really? Too soon if you ask me.) Ideally you want your cards to arrive in early or mid December.

#2 Use your own handwriting wherever possible (as opposed to having somebody else write them out I guess); show that you care enough to take a few minutes and give each card some attention; handwrite a short note on the inside of the card. The site I visited – 7 tips for proper Christmas card etiquette – even says that you should especially use your own handwriting on the outside of the envelopes. So no printed, mail-merged, labels you lazy people.

#3 Don’t send e-cards as a substitute for real cards. A Christmas card should be an act of generosity with a personal touch. E-cards “no longer evokes the feeling of traditional winter cheer.” Take that e-greetings.

Xmas card display

And then there’s the element of receiving cards. I love receiving cards in the mail even more than I enjoy sending them out. But every year I wonder, where am I going to put all of these cards? Well, let me tell you dear readers, with a few keystrokes on your computer, you can find a plethora of awesome ideas. Clothspins and garland seem to be the top choices but a quick visit to Pinterest.com and the words Christmas card displays in the search box will bring up more options than you’d ever want or need.

Christmas card display

Do you send cards? Do you like getting cards in the mail? How to you display your holiday cards?

Fun fact about me: I used to send cards to all of my friends for every single holiday.

Word of the Day: Patique

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, December 2014. All photos courtesy Google Images and Pinterest.

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