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And a Very Happy New Year to You!

Happy New Year!! It’s been a great week since Christmas. I’ve been posting pretty regularly on Instagram (LINK) and Facebook (LINK), but its time for a blog update.

Christmas Day

On Christmas we had our girls, their guys, and the grandkids over. This year we had a plan.  We had the kids open their gifts and to enjoy the morning with them.

Once they went down for naps, we opened our gifts and finished dinner. The good was great: rib eye steaks, lobster, and all the sides. It went pretty much according to plan. We made a lot of fun memories on Christmas.

The Holiday Bowl

On the 27th, the hubs and I headed down to San Diego to take in the Holiday Bowl. My husband is a native Michigander and avid Michigan State fan. When we were in Michigan in September, we went to a Michigan State football game and had a fabulous time. So, I decided to surprise him with tickets to the Holiday Bowl to see Michigan State play.

There were SO many Michigan State fans everywhere in San Diego. Many more than Washington State fans. We stayed in the Gas Lamp Quarter and took the trolley to the game. It was a lot of fun and we can’t wait to return to San Diego again soon.

The Holiday Bowl parade was really cute!
We loved staying in the Gas Lamp Quarter
The food at Rockin’ Baja Lobster was delish
The final score at the game

 

Our Annual Christmas/Gift Exchange

The day after we got back, we had our annual family Christmas and gift exchange. I planned craft activities for the kids to keep them engaged while we readied dinner. They made some really cute placemats and plates. Dinner was yummy and the family time priceless.

New Year Motivations

I am so exited about the New Year. How about you? It’s almost like a new start or a clean slate when you wake up on New Year’s Day.

Yesterday, I spent most of the day taking down the Christmas decor, packing up ornaments, and putting away the tree. My rooms looked so bare afterward…

So, when I woke up this morning I had goals in mind: watch a couple of episodes of Fixer Upper (for motivation) and spruce up the living room. During the commercials, I trolled my house looking for decor items/photos to put in the bare areas of the living room.

Then, in true Renae fashion, I got really motivated and rearranged the whole living room. Thankfully, I got a little help from my husband because our reclining sofa are heavy. I’ll post pics in a post later this week, or check my Instagram or Facebook for a preview of the changes!

Until then,

New Year

See my living room now:

https://thefeatherednester.com/lets-get-decorating-folks-decor/

and

https://thefeatherednester.com/project-motivation-when-things-go-wrong/

Have Yourselves A Merry Little Christmas!

Christmas Dinner

I wanted to jump on here and wish everyone a very Merry Christmas. Before I know it, it’s going to be fun and chaotic. So, I’m enjoying my coffee and solitude while I can.

Merry Christmas

 

One of my favorite Christmas decorations is this cute Nativity Scene that I got from Avon at least 25 years ago. My kids and grandkids have all played with it over the years.

I saw it this morning and decided to set it up on display as a reminder of what today really means. The birth of Jesus.

Merry Christmas
Merry Christmas from my home to yours! I wish you love and happiness today and always. May you find peace and special meaning on this Christmas Day.

 

Christmas Dinner Menu & Recipes

Christmas

From 2017: Friends, I can’t believe it’s almost Christmas! I love all the excitement leading up to Christmas…listing to holiday music, setting up the Christmas tree, buying and wrapping gifts, and being thankful for all my blessings. Each year, as soon as Thanksgiving is over, I start planning my Christmas Menu. What special recipes will make the list for Christmas dinner? Find out what’s made the cut as I share my Christmas dinner menu and recipes with you.

Read moreChristmas Dinner Menu & Recipes

Canning on a Fall Saturday

My daughters and I canned last Saturday. It was our first family canning experience. We’ve been saying for years that we were going to do this, and we finally did!

Initially, we were going to make spaghetti sauce with meat and pressure can it. But, when I got out the pressure canner, it was missing parts. So, we went to plan b and made it without meat.

Let’s Get Canning

Canning
We cored and cut 30 pounds of tomatoes!

We started with the Ball’s Home Canning recipe for Spaghetti Sauce with Meat. This called for coring and cutting the tomatoes, then putting them through a food mill. We did our first 15 pounds of tomatoes like that, so when we switched recipes we continued with that process for the next 15 lbs.

Canning
Cooking down the tomatoes

The sauce needed to simmer for at least 2 hours. Once the sauce was ready, we added it to the jars and put them in the canner to process. Then we celebrated on the back patio while the first batch was processing.

We used pint jars and processed them for 35 minutes.

All total, we made 18 pint jars of spaghetti sauce. Since my canner holds 6 jars at a time, we processed three batches.

Not bad for a Saturday’s work and we had a lot of fun doing it!

Here are a few of my recipes that you can use this spaghetti sauce in:

https://thefeatherednester.com/italian-meatball-casserole-dinner/
https://thefeatherednester.com/lasagna-low-sodium-gluten-free/
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