Christmas Spirit Hodgepodge

Wednesday Hodgepodge questions that Joyce From This Side of the Pond asks each week are not surprisingly Christmas themed in December. Here we go…

1. What do you think it means to have the holiday spirit?

Going deep on this one and deferring to my hubby:

“It’s having the Spirit of Christ, who convicts of sin and enables faith in that Jesus is who He says He is and has done what He has says He has done. Without the work of the Spirit of Christ we would have no hope for forgiveness, for eternity with Him, for glory.

Romans 5:1 (ESV)

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God.”

2. What’s one thing you’ve baked this month?

I baked a Chocolate Decadent Bundt cake last week for our card night.

Have you eaten the finished product?

Yes, at the card night last Friday night. It got very good reviews from those who ate it.

How much baking do you do around the holidays?

This varies from year to year. Some years I don’t make any cookies…shock!

What baked sweet something does your family insist is on the menu during this season of the year?

Roolyet is a Russian treat our mom would make every Christmas. A yeast dough rolled with a  walnut filling (walnuts, sugar, egg whites and vanilla). Now that my sister and I perfected the recipe I should make it every Christmas, too.

3. Your most recent ‘half-baked’ idea?

How about thoroughly baked. In January I clicked on the buy button for plane tickets from Seattle to London for September of this year. Then COVID-19 struck us all. Plane tickets, Air BnB deposits and many plans made that had to all be cancelled. Thankfully all was refunded.

4. Where were you the last time you ‘baked’ in the sun?

In my own backyard pulling weeds.

The top ten sunniest destinations in the world (most sun from January-December according to this site) are Dubai, Bali Indonesia, Los Angeles CA, Miami FL, Barbados, Dominican Republic, St. Lucia, Mauritius, Antiqua, and the Canary Islands Spain. Have you been to any of the cities listed?

I was born in East Los Angeles and raised in the “burbs” of Los Angeles and spent many summers baking on Southern California beaches slathered in Coconut Butter. Craziness!

Which one on the list appeals to you the most?

We do not choose sunny destinations these days. We do not lay in the sun. We look for shade and head straight to an umbrella when the sun is out and the air is hot. The only reason L.A. is appealing these days is because of our loved ones who live there and who we enjoy spending time with.

If the world were not upside down crazy and you could lie on a beach anywhere right now where would you go?

Never mind lying on the beaches, I would choose Jolly Old England any time of the year, walking down a lane instead of lying on a beach!

Now that said, we do enjoy walking on the beach at dawn in the summer and any time of day in the Winter.

5. Today I wish I had more _____________________.

Options for shopping in my little town of Colville.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

This past Sunday to Monday we enjoyed a 46th Anniversary night at the Coeur d’Alene Resort in Idaho on Lake Coeur d’Alene. Dinner at Beverly’s on the 7th floor made us feel like normal before all this craziness came upon us all.

Our complimentary Anniversary dessert! Vanilla ice cream wrapped in cotton candy with some fruit and dessert bark.

When the Christmas cards are all signed, sealed and delivered to the Post Office I feel like I should get an award. Do you still send cards?

46th Anniversary Weekend

Forty Six years ago on December 6, 1974 we were married on a Friday night in Southern California.

img079After our wedding we went to my parents home and got ready to leave on our honeymoon. Our family and closest friends were there, too, and we opened gifts before we changed into our get away clothes and left for our honeymoon. Did any of you do that after your wedding or did you take off and go straight to your honeymoon from the wedding site? We were pretty beat when we finally arrived to our first destination, the Pierpont Inn in Ventura, California.

img080The Pierpont Inn, Ventura, California. Little did we know that 10 years later we would move to Ventura.

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img084From the Pierpont we continued north along the coast of California.

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img092This little log cabin somewhere in Central California was a nice little spot to stop. I can’t find it online anymore but it was called Butterfly Trees Lodge.

img093This was Dear’s car, a 1971 Datsun 510.

img094We went as far north as San Francisco and then headed back home along the 101 highway to our apartment in West Los Angeles. We stopped in Solvang on our way home.

We have had our ups and downs, broke years and rich years, fun years and tough years, apartment years and house years, traveling years and stay at home years, lots of kid sports years (baseball and soccer), college expense years, wedding years, and grand baby years. We’ve had sanctifying spiritual growth that for some years plateaued and other years flourished. We are in a flourishing stage right now that we are thankful for in our retirement years. God has sustained and protected our marriage through thick and thin and we are grateful. He has tried us, kept us and blessed us. Thank you, Lord. May we love you more and each other more in our 47th year!

Back to 2020 and how we plan to celebrate our anniversary. Because of current COVID closures in Washington state we are heading to Idaho to the Coeur d’Alene Resort on Sunday for an overnight and dinner at Beverly’s. We are looking forward to sitting down and eating in a nice restaurant. This will only be about a 2 hour drive for us.

On our way home on Monday we will do some shopping in Spokane.

We haven’t changed much…right?

Hugs Allowed Hodgepodge

It’s time for Wednesday Hodgepodge. Thank you Jo From This Side of the Pond for the questions!

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?

I’ll have to go with COVID-19 in the #1 spot. 

Which word/phrase on this list would you be happy to never hear again?

There are several of these words/phrases I’d like to obliterate and have little tolerance for but since I can only choose one I’ll go with lockdown because mask wasn’t on the list.

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

Hugs. The best part of this year was when hugs were allowed again in our family. The hardest thing was the few months with no hugging. 

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?

Peppermint has it’s place. I do enjoy a York Peppermint Pattie in the form of Junior Mints. 

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

Roses, stop signs, red light, the red carpet, Dorothy’s ruby slippers…

And in the world of soccer the dreaded red card that penalizes a player with ejection from the field and future games depending on how bad the violation was. 

How about the color green?

Grass, Spring, vegetables, Go!, legal immigrants (green card), Irish…

5. Is your tree up?

Yes because we stumbled upon a good deal on a fake tree that was a floor model so it went right up when we brought it home. It is not fully decorated yet.

Real or artificial?

This is the first year we have gone with artificial.

Is your house decorated?

It is on the way to being decorated fully.

Is your shopping done? Started? Wrapped?

Pretty much done because this is a stockings only year. Every other year we simplify Christmas gifts and try to plan a family trip instead. We have our family trip booked for Arizona in January already. Nothing is wrapped. 

On a scale of 1-10 with 1 being Scrooge-like and 10 being Buddy the Elf, how’s your Christmas spirit?

I’m going to go with a Tiny Tim 10 instead of Buddy the Elf. 

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Sunday December 6th will be our Forty Sixth Wedding Anniversary. 

Usually we would go out for a nice meal or even plan an overnight somewhere…sigh. We will still celebrate and choose joy and thank our God for sustaining and blessing our marriage.