We were kind of worried that the weather would turn bad, with snow and ice. But, instead, we had a very nice day. I’d fixed a nice ham, garlic mashed potatoes, candied carrots, rolls, and all the goodies. So, as usual, we had a great visit and stuffed ourselves. My sister, Deb, and her husband, Bill, also came. Deb is a fantastic baker and brought lots of Christmas cookies. It’s lucky, as with my bad knees causing lots of pain, I didn’t get any cookies baked up. It’s funny how some things work out like that.

We enjoyed our family get together. My sister and her husband also came, making the day even better.

After dinner, we exchanged gifts and had to laugh as Delilah is now old enough to figure out things. It sure didn’t take her long to rip the wrapping off of her gifts! She also enjoyed her dad’s new DeWalt reciprocating saw. His old one had blown up from so much use while building his cabin and Will caught him using a hand saw to cut PVC drainpipe under the house. David showed her how to make the new saw work and she laughed as she pulled the trigger, and it made noise. Delilah thought that was so much fun. (No blade was attached!)

Delilah loved her fuzzy stuffed bunny.
But she REALLY loved Dad’s new DeWalt reciprocating saw!

Will got me a new weather station. Our old one (actually David’s) finally was destroyed when we had bad wind gusts. It’s so nice to know the wind speed, outside temperature, and the low and high that day. We just about live by the weather when we are planning our days’ work.

We had fun with Mason’s Star Wars Light Saber, teasing him about playing with a “toy” when he’d just gotten his driver’s permit. (He drove all the way up here and back home.)

I still have some ham left. Last night, we had diced ham in a big omelet but the rest, I plan on canning up with some beans, to make baked beans. They’re so handy when I want a tasty side dish! — Jackie


  1. I always enjoy hearing from you. Your post sounded that you had a wonderful Christmas. It really does not matter when we celebrate Christmas as long as we are with family. I spent two weeks with my daughter, her partner, and dogs in Washington. It was very enjoyable, but the best part was just being with her and her family.

    • Doesn’t time fly, though??? It’s shocking to me that Mason is taller than Bill or Kelly Jo and is now driving. When did that happen???

  2. I would love to have a weather station – do you have any that you would recommend? Love your blog – you inspire me to keep canning, even in the winter!

    • This is our second weather station. Will got it at Menard’s. I can’t really recommend a certain brand, as we’ve only had the one up all these years. But, I’m sure most any medium priced station would work just fine.

  3. After Christmas and New Year’s I am always ready for seed catalogs! I will sit by the fireplace and browse the new varieties and watch it drizzle rain (or snow) outside. Those green plants and showy flowers are always a spirit lifter and promise of things to come. I am too old now to plant a garden; but I have a few potted herbs and flowers to comfort me. Fortunately, the Amish are nearby and I can drive for miles and see fields of green corn, soybean, etc. Watching things grow always refreshes the soul. Take care everyone and stay warm and happy. Enjoy each season as it comes and goes.

    • I, too, love browsing through seed catalogs and seeing all those colorful photos. You’re right; watching things grow always perks up the soul. We’re already looking forward to spring.

  4. Kudos to Bill and Kelly for giving Mason “OTR” driving experience. I remember my folks basically telling me I was going to be the driver (I was more than happy to do so).
    Always so nice to have what I call a low key get together – everyone enjoys themselves when it not a stressful event. Ok, sometimes the weather doesn’t totally cooperate but when low key, we all roll with the punches.
    I’m sure no one complained when your sister showed up with cookies!
    Looks like you got/are getting more snow. Except for the arctic express around Xmas, we’ve been on the fringes or totally missed by the less than desired weather. Fog has been our issue – fog and country pitch black can make a drive home a slow (but safe) slog.
    The unhomed cat is making use of the shelter we set up for him and I do feel better. He survived the -35/-40 day we had before Xmas. I started giving him wet food (ample portions) in addition to his dry food once it started getting cold. He’ll likely never be an indoor or even indoor/outdoor cat but I’ll keep him fed and sheltered best I can. Come spring, I’ll see if I can live trap him to be TNR and vaccinated for rabies. IMHO, too cold to do the TNR this time of the year.

    • We’ve had a little more snow but not the cold and wind. So, that’s okay. Hey, it’s winter…. We really enjoyed our family get together and wish they were more frequent.

  5. Sounds amazing! Christmas with the family is just the best. It makes things so much more enjoyable. I got a DeWalt saw and impact from my husbands grandma and grandpa on his mothers side for my bridal shower. They are still around now after 4 tough years of use, and I am so thankful for them every day! Useful stuff is so underrated. Glad you could get him something he could use!

    We were at Menards last night and they’ve started setting their seed supplies out. I was just thrumming with excitement and couldn’t stop talking about the seeds we needed to start, and that I still have to buy seed! I bought a few seed starter packs and now just need to get dirt, and seed. It makes me so excited! It’s the little things in life that are the best.

    • I hear you on seeing seed supplies out (we too went to Menard’s – 15% off bag so stocked up wet food for the unhomed cat plus some other items). Bag was full otherwise I would have checked out the garden supplies. Oh well, still a number of days left to use the bag.
      Earliest I’ll plant is taters on Good Friday but nothing else until mid-May at the earliest. Makes me excited too! Gardening not only provides us nutritious food but exercise and stress relief also.

      • I start seeds the end of February and through April/May. I never get anything in the ground until the end of May. It’s too cold here, I am the same Zone as Jackie, and about 115 SE of her.

    • I hear you! We’ve been planning our garden for a month or more now. And, when you see seeds and seed starting stuff in the stores, it makes you itch. (Of course, we don’t buy seeds from the store as ours are much better! Ha ha!) We can’t start seeds until at least the end of February (onions and petunias) through April (peppers and tomatoes), as we can’t set plants that are frost sensitive out until (with luck) June.


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