What’s Going On Wednesday, Middle Of First Week of 2020

Since I seem to be in a good rhythm with posting, here’s a quick update of how the week looks so far in my world.

Took (overdue) books back to the library yesterday and found this gem while wandering the shelves: 

While maybe not completely relevant, it made this quote pop into my mind:

When you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you achieve it. (Paulo Coelho)

I also put away the last of the Christmas decorations yesterday. And couldn’t even make this stuff up, just as I finished, two Jehovah’s Witnesses appeared at my door. While I (hopefully) was respectful and polite, I don’t see myself converting to a religion that doesn’t celebrate any holidays.

And true to my word, I looked up the reasons on their website. I remain unconvinced and will stick with my mixed up background beliefs founded in the Baptist/Catholic/Lutheran churches. Thank you very much.

Now that we’ve cleared that air….how about a new candle scent?

I was tired of Christmas scents though I suppose technically hot cocoa and cream could go winter once I took away the twisted peppermint small candle beside it.  However, I pulled this out of the closet and now I really wish I’d have bought two! We all love this one. Not even sure how to describe it…a bit of a clean scent with a faint perfume-y undertone but it doesn’t overwhelm.

In slightly related news, I need to restock my candle stash a bit.

Back to putting away Christmas:

What do you do with poinsettia plants after Christmas? After much debate, I moved ours down to the basement window behind this desk. It’s nice to have a bit of life and color down here. We’ll see how long they survive Really, I’m surprised they made it this long.


Today’s plans involve a trip to Target, Bath & Body Works, and possibly the grocery store. Time to clear out two more kitchen cabinets. A night without any running/picking up of the high school kid. Keeping an eye on the news. A quick whole-house clean up. And of course, laundry.

What’s going on in your world on this Wednesday?



Home Love Plans For The Week

Thought about calling these posts “home work” plans for the week.  Wait, what posts? Oh, this is my first one focusing on my word for the year.

I’ve decided to list some ways I plan to love on my home each Tuesday. Maybe just a simple to do list, maybe a bit more. It’s an evolving thing much like my word of the year. Decided against calling them home work plans because I don’t feel much love toward that phrase.

Do you think it was a pretty strong, positive sign I picked the right word when I stumbled across this card on Sunday: 

I was searching for a birthday card in my stash of unused cards (tell me everyone has one of those?) and stumbled across this.  Pretty strong message

Here’s the inside if you’re curious. It’s actually a Valentine’s Day card from a few years back where we forgot to give them or something and I stashed the cards to use the following year and then, forgot about them. 

Okay, moving on from stories and to this week’s list of home love items.

Home Love For The Week Ahead:

  1. Make a Three King’s Cake and nice dinner for the Epiphany (DONE)
  2. Put away Christmas decorations
  3. Clean and clear out two more kitchen cabinets. I did the two above the stove on Sunday. Look, space!
  4. Figure out storage for video gaming that makes everyone happy and doesn’t look like clutter to me.
  5. Take an overall cleaning supply/oils/candles inventory…maybe some clearing out of that stuff as well. And perhaps replacing with some new to freshen things up for the month/year.

Starting with a short list for this week. My main focus for January is the kitchen so there may be a lot more kitchen related tasks in my next post.

Now, I need to go and find my wreath keeper box. I KNOW I have one. Have you seen it?

Happy Homemaker Monday, The First One Of The New Decade!

The title of this posts sounds a bit more perky and exciting than I currently feel.   I woke up early the past two days (courtesy of the cat on Saturday) but there’s something different when you *have to* be up early isn’t there? 

Today’s the Epiphany so per our tradition, we’re having one last special holiday meal to celebrate before I pack away the rest of the Christmas decor.  Maybe one final (small) gift for everyone. Then, it’s all back to routine around here this week. Well, except for the college kid, he gets one more week to be lazy.

Happy to be home to plan the first full week of 2020 with a Happy Homemaker Monday post and link it up with Sandra over at Diary Of A Stay At Home Mom.

The Weather 

“It’s really nice out for January” Direct quote from J as he opened the front door yesterday. Hard to have the winter blahs with our current weather. Highs in the upper 40’s to lower 50’s and sunny mostly all week (chance of rain on Thursday into Friday). Winter returns from its vacation next week, I think.

Right Now I Am

Listening to the washing machine while I’m down in the basement working on this post. Battling a slight cold (and so grateful it’s just a cold and not the flu as I keep seeing scary news stories about how bad the flu is supposed to be this season).


Mostly about all the things I need to do today.

On My Reading Pile

Overdue library books! Didn’t get to the library yesterday. Have two half-read books on my pile but I want to start fresh with something new to start off the year. Read a couple of magazines over the weekend.

On My TV

This could explain the lack of reading. Binge-watched season 4 of The Magicians on Netflix. Then, started watching The Librarians on Hulu. I’m already on season 2 of that one.  Need to return to listening to music and reading more.

Something Fun To Share

I found a bluebird of happiness during a walk on New Year’s Day!

On The Menu For This Week:

MONDAY: Epiphany!  Turkey breast roast, sweet potatoes, cranberries, salad, rolls, 3 Kings cake *J has not lesson but does have pep band at 6*

TUESDAY: Fish, shrimp, asparagus *J has pep band at 6*

WEDNESDAY: Turkey sandwiches, homemade potato chips

THURSDAY: BBQ chicken, maybe rice? Need to think out the sides

FRIDAY: Maybe soup??? Not sure *I work 8:30-5:30*

On My To Do List

  1. Return overdue library books
  2. Put away rest of Christmas decor (Nativity set, greenery around kitchen doorway)
  3. Update technical stuff  to see if it solves photo loading problem (resizing every photo to load onto this blog is getting old fast)
  4. Clean out 2 more kitchen cabinets (It’s kitchen clearing week here!)
  5. Laundry! Dishes!
  6. Whatever I’m forgetting…sure there’s something.

Homemaking Tips

Taking time to focus and enjoy the process of something like washing the dishes makes it feel like less of a chore.

Looking Around The House

I’m ready for the openness feeling of a January decor. Also, my question for you is about snowmen. Christmas or Winter? Keep them out or put them away? I just put them out but I’m not sure if they’ll stay:

From The Camera

I know my post is already a bit picture heavy but I made a goal to pick up my camera every day in 2020. Forgot how much I enjoyed taking pictures there near the end of last year.

We had beautiful New Year’s Day weather around here and I took advantage by going for a walk at a local park to soak up the sunshine. Thinking I might be solar-powered and my battery definitely needed the recharge! 

Quote For The Week

A house is made with walls and beams, a home is built with love and dreams                      (Ralph Waldo Emerson)


What are your plans for this first full week of the new decade?

My Word For 2020: Home

A new word for the year to start the decade took a bit of thought.

I started by reflecting on 8 years of words. Almost a decade! Almost a blog post!

My words of the past 8 years:

2012: No

2013: Present

2014: Action

2015: Chapter

2016: Celebrate

2017: Rediscover, Revive, and Renew

2018: Embrace

2019: Gratitude


The words from 2018 and 2019 worked the best for me. Experience? Maybe I learned something from the previous years mixed results? Perhaps.

None of the words I considered while reflecting on my year of gratitude made the cut.  I felt kind of stuck, not that there’s pressure to choose a word but I just like to have one. Maybe making my list of 20 things for 2020 would help narrow down my focus. It did!

New word contenders jumped into the mix. Don’t you know this word of the year is some kind of weird mixed up beauty contest in my mind?  Renew….Revive….Restore….seems to be a theme.

Also, sounds like an add for beauty products. Does it not? Somehow, none of them quite fit although I tried to make them for a bit. Printed out some free art, googled their definitions, put them in the Pinterest search bar.

Looked at my 20 for 2020 list again and realized I had the perfect word for my year all along. So much of what I want to do and how I feel comes from this place. 

My word for 2020 is going to simply be HOME. Seems like such a simple word but really home is much more than a place isn’t it? It’s a feeling, a comfort, a place to shelter from the world. A place to recharge. A place to fill with love (why I made my o into a heart on the graphic).

Did you pick a word for 2020 yet? What did you choose?


20 Things I Want To Do In 2020

I’m blaming the lack of progress on my 2019 list on 19 being an odd number. It was just kind of odd year. I managed um, 3 out of my 19. Ouch.

And if I can’t manage to accomplish 19 things in a year, why not add 20 for the next year? Seems like a good idea! I feel good about 2020.

Let’s not even bother looking back at that silly 2019 list (though I’m keeping 2 of the 3 accomplishments to add again this year).


These are in a very random order, of course.

  1. Pick up my camera every day

    So far so good on the first two items on my list! Nice weather yesterday meant a nice long walk with camera in hand.

  2. Go on at least one hike at a park each month.
  3. Read 72 books! My Good Reads goal for the year. In 2018, I read 52 and in 2019, I managed to read 62.  While it sounds a bit daunting, I’m fairly confident I’ll do it. (One of the 3 from 2019 that I actually accomplished)
  4. Prepare for Christmas by buying 2 presents each month. (This was one of the 3 from 2019 I managed to do and it did help the December stress level)
  5. Eat healthy Monday through Friday and not worry about it so much on the weekends. Exceptions for birthdays and anniversaries, etc. Basically, I’m going to apply a 70/30 rule to my eating habits. 70 % healthy/30 % not so much. Starting on the 6th because Christmas goodies are still here and pink champagne cupcakes are what’s for breakfast.

  6. Do a deep clean, clutter clear out of the whole house. Starting with the kitchen and the cabinet above the stove where we keep our spices. (I know, I know…it’s a bad spot to store them)
  7. Take a trip (another of the 3 from 2019 that I actually accomplished!)
  8. Engage more on Facebook but only in a positive way. I have a long-standing rule of no politics on my Facebook wall and have absolutely no intention of changing it. However, I’ve not been using it as a communication tool but more like a window. I want to get back to actually opening the door and having conversations to reconnect with friends and family on there. And possibly other social media platforms as well.
  9. Teach the boys one practical life skill a month (i.e., cooking, cleaning out the gutters (my husband does this but they should know how, just basic stuff as it comes up that we may have overlooked showing them. A kind of better late than never thing, I guess)
  10. Invite family over for dinner once a month. Not all the family at once, just one family at a time so we can get to know them better though I may count birthday dinners with extended families and holidays in my once a month goal here.

  11. Join in for every Happy Homemaker Monday. I fell a little short last year, missed 3-4 but I love this link up so much I’ll always put it on my list for the year!
  12. Work with G to make this basement area a bit of a more welcoming space. We’ve been talking about doing this for 2 years! Time to actually do it.
  13. Post on this blog at least twice a week in 2020.
  14. Take more chances. Open myself up to opportunities. If something sounds fun and scary, just go for it. I used to be like that but again….I’ve found myself retreating from these types of things in the past decade (or more).
  15. Be better. Be a better mom, wife, friend. I didn’t feel like I did my best at these things last year. Withdrawing is my (not the best) coping strategy and think I over-applied it the last 10 (maybe 20?) years. Time to do better.

  16. Buy one set of new kitchen towels each month. Silly I know but so many of our kitchen towels are in poor shape and need to go.
  17. Plant something/clean out the flower garden box area below our bedroom windows in the back yard.
  18. Get fresh flowers for the table once a month. I enjoyed this in 2018 and would like to do it again. There’s just something that makes a home feel nice with some fresh flowers in it.
  19. Make some monthly goals together with my husband.
  20. Remember to take time to enjoy the small moments of happiness and continue to practice gratitude.


I think 2020 is going to be a great year! Don’t you? What things would you put on your list?



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