Happy New Year 2005!!!
- The Simple Life
"Will your children even remember how many gifts they received
or even those they gave? Probably not. They'll remember the fun
family times. I find it sobering to realize that every day I am
participating in the creation of my children's childhood memories.
If you still have time to do something about those memories, don't
miss the opportunity." ~~ Mary Hunt
* * * * * * * * * *
Now is the time to think over how Christmas went. What was
good, not so good, or not necessary? Start by asking the kids what
they got for Christmas. The baby, of course, was happy to play with
the boxes, and try to put all that colored paper in her mouth. Did
anyone complain about the Christmas Eve service, or was it a fun
family event to relax and enjoy? Were the decorations meaningful,
or were they really over the top or not enough? How hard are they
to put up or down and pack away? No one will notice who had the
most lights in the yard, but when they enter the house, they will
notice how they were treated.
One of our favorite holiday activities is to go for a ride and
see the lights in a local town, or sometimes we visit a random town
an hour or so away. It's nice and relaxing. We might eat before
go, and stop for a piece of pie - or enjoy a meal out.
We had a taco bar with sandwiches, desserts, salads and finger
food for Christmas dinner. The biggest problem was finding counter
space for the buffet. Everyone loved it, but I realized that I
could have done a few more things ahead of time. That will be on my
list for next year. One thing we did right was use nice paper
plates and paper cups. A big trash bag took care of most of the
While most of the Christmas parties are over, let's plan
next year right now! No, we don't have to plan every
we can get a head start. If you draw names, do it now! Send
everyone an email on those new computers you just got, and that will
narrow down the list, somewhat. Start with a gift list. Just a
skeleton list that gives you an idea of who you will need a gift for
next year, and now you have a place to write down ideas as they
come. Think back to all those craft shows you walked through. Did
you see any gifts you could make for next year? Anyone, even a kid
can crochet a scarf or make a potholder. Everyone needs them, too.
Nothing wrong with making everyone a cute birdhouse, or other gift.
Use one pattern and have a production line. Finding a gift that
kids can help with is great family fun. Also, if you have a list
handy, in your wallet or purse, you can write ideas down while you
go. Maybe this spring you will notice your grandson will outgrow
his baseball glove. Idea! You will also get to take advantage of a
good sale when baseball season is over. This year I will be finding
some crafts I can get done ahead of time, and work on them early.
I'm also working on a family recipe book, complete with a few
photos! I use a regular notebook binder (3 ring) and see through
page protectors. I print out the recipes 3 or 4 to a page, and use
dividers to separate different categories, such as cookies, breads,
veggies, etc. Now when we need a recipe, the page can be taken out,
and easily taped to the cupboard door until I'm done with it.
it can't get stained in a plastic page protector. I can put a
of Gram next to her favorite cookie recipe and maybe a note about
how much fun I had making them with her when I was young. All my
children will get one of these notebooks. But it is a big project I
actually started two years ago, and have been typing the recipes
onto a computer file. This year I will be printing them out and
putting them together.
I've heard many people who've been married for years say
they don't buy each other a gift. Well, I guess that's
them, but for me, I think hunting for just the right gift is half
the fun. My husband is a tool man. He doesn't have them all,
though. We were walking through his favorite store a few months
back and he showed me a tool that he didn't have, but would come
handy. I knew exactly what his Christmas gift would be. He'd
forgotten showing it to me, and was really surprised. I told him I
didn't have a problem with him taking it back if there was
he could use more, but he's already made plans for it on one of
There wasn't much of anything I needed, but there were some
shelves I need built. That was just what I wanted!
One thing New Year's makes me think of is how I spent my
What was worthwhile? What was a waste? Even those things I wasted
were not a waste if I learned from my mistake. Nothing I've done
this year to make someone's life better was a mistake. Making
memories with my family is more important than any gift I can give
"There is a wonderful mythical law of nature that the three
things we crave most in life -- happiness, freedom, and peace of
mind -- are always attained by giving them to someone else." --
Peyton Conway March
Simple Laughs for the New Year!
1. He who dies with the most toys is still dead.
2. NyQuil, the stuffy, sneezy, why-the-heck-is-the-room-spinning
3. Consciousness: That annoying time between naps.
4. I'm not a complete idiot --Some parts are missing.
5. Don't take life too seriously; No one gets out alive.
6. Ever stop to think, and forget to start again?
7. Being "over the hill" is much better than being under it!
8. Wrinkled Was Not One of the Things I Wanted to Be When I Grew up.
9. Stupidity is not a handicap. Park elsewhere!
10. I Have a Degree in Liberal Arts; Do You Want Fries With That?
1 pkg. wonton wrappers (found in produce section of grocery store)
2 tbsp. finely chopped scallions
crab meat, smaller pack (I usually use imitation)
1 block cream cheese, softened
garlic salt, dash
You don't have to measure the ingredients, just mix and suit to
taste. In medium bowl, mix cream cheese, very small dash of garlic
salt, and chopped scallions. When mixed well, add crab meat to
mixture, mix again. (Some Chinese restaurants make theirs sort of
sweet, if you prefer the sweet ones, add 1 tbsp. powdered sugar,
more or less to taste. You can also make
the cream cheese rangoons, with no crab meat, if you do this mix
just the cream cheese with powdered sugar-very good!) Drop spoonful
of mixture onto wonton wrapper, then fold into star shape, corners
up in the air. Brush corners with water so they will stick. Drop
into med-hot oil to fry. (Deep fry is what I do) Repeat until you
have enough, just fix extras because
they are good! Just make sure not to leave unattended, the wonton
wrapper will begin to turn brown and begin to sort of 'bubble up',
that's when it's ready to remove from the oil. Hope this helps!
Keeping it Simple,