Tuesday, January 21, 2014

My 61st Birthday

By the time one turns 61, one should know what they want to do on their birthday. For the past several years, I have decided exactly what I want my day to look like.

Now, do not get me wrong. I do not want to do the work ... I just tell my family and they do it.

Here is what I wanted for my recent 61st birthday ...

1. something delicious for breakfast

Dave's homemade apple strudel
2. coffee with Dave and the girls

can you tell whose hand is whose?

3. a light fresh lunch with an afternoon at home

made by Christy

4. dinner downtown at Epic Burger
 5. a great movie together
sweet and intense

It was perfect ... everything I wanted. And, this year I asked for no presents. There was nothing I needed for wanted. (and Christmas was right around the corner)

Try it out on your next birthday.

What would your perfect birthday look like?  

Monday, January 13, 2014

My Chicago Doughnut/Donut Tour

Whenever Dave has some time off (several weeks off in December), I know I am in for some fun adventures.

One of our December adventures came about because Dave read The Daily Meal's, America's 25 best doughnuts. Oh boy ...

So over three days and miles and miles of walking all over downtown Chicago ... we had a fantastic donut experience.

The Doughnut Vault
We began at The Doughnut Vault with the #1 doughnut in America ... the vanilla raised glazed.

my #1 husband with the #1 doughnut
Dave and I both thought it was the best doughnut we had ever eaten. And it was huge.

And, they serve a delicious cup of coffee for $1.

The Doughnut Vault offers a handful of flavors with one special each day.

Our next stop was Do Rite Donuts and Coffee which won spot #13 for their chocolate raised glazed.

It was super cold this day, and none of these tiny (amazing) donut shops have indoor seating.

I love my coat pockets stuffed with mittens and ear muffs. (did not want you to think there were more donuts)

Do Rite is known for super fresh donuts as they bake all day long in batches of 36.

Chicago had two more shops that made the top 25 best donuts in America list, (Dat Donut #16 and Dinkels Bakery #24), but since we were on foot, they were too far away. So we went with two more shops we had heard a lot about.

such cheery packaging
Our third stop was Glazed and Infused. It was such a fun shop and their donuts did not disappoint.

which would you choose?
 Decisions ... decisions.

Dave got maple bacon. I got creme brulee.
These donuts were also wildy delicious.

Okay, one last stop (after lots more walking ... the city was our feast and our gym), Firecake Donuts. This great shop stays open until 10 at night, so we went late one beautiful snowy evening.

Charming, eh?

more donut goodness
I chose (and enjoyed) their coconut cream donut.

doughnut art

Well, our tour is done. Wish you could have joined us in the donut deliciousness. 

Do you have a favorite donut shop in your city?


Friday, January 10, 2014

Truth ... with my morning eggs

I value truth ... a lot.

But I never thought I would find it with my morning eggs.

a nice surprise inside the carton

Thanks, Dutch Farms.

Monday, January 6, 2014

My Word for the Year

Two words have been milling in my head as we begin the new year and it is time again, to choose my word for the year.

not my word for the year :)

For three years, I chose my word based on a word ornament that I got from friends. But no one gave me any ornaments with words this year. 

This year, I paid attention to words around me and when I saw this word in the chase study I am enjoying ... I just liked it.

My word for 2014 is ...consider.

Consider is a thoughtful, intentional, forward moving word, that I think will help me to pay attention to life.

I want to pay attention to ...

     *what I am enjoying

     *what is causing me to be afraid or stuck

     *when am I numbing, rather than feeling

     *what God is saying to me

     *what opportunities I have to love well


"Only fear the Lord and serve Him faithfully with all your heart. For consider what great things He has done for you."  I Samuel 12:24 

Have you chosen a word for your year? I would love to hear about it. 

Linking with Jen.     

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Why I love, really love, January

There seems to be two camps on this first month of the year.

          *Do you love January?

          *Do you loathe January?

Gingerbread house making with the little people we love
December is full ... full of color, food, fun, activities, adventures and people.

December is delicious and wonderful  (and hard if you are sad,) but by the end, I am ready for simple food, simple decorations, simple scheduling, yes, simple everything.

But even more ... it is the delight of a new and fresh start that makes the month of January so delightful. I love new beginnings and fresh starts. New is a beautiful word. 

Lamentations 3:22-23 are my favorite verses for January. 
          Because of the Lord's great love, we are
          not consumed, for his compassions never
          fail. They are new  every morning;
          great is your faithfulness.

Here are a few things I love to do in January:

1. Spruce (a little deeper clean) the house after I take down the Christmas decorations.

2. Rearrange the furniture. (the house feels bigger after the Christmas stuff is away)

3. Cozy up the house with blankets, stacks of books, candles and twinkle lights.

4. Spend some time reflecting on the past year. (both the highs and the lows) 

5. Ponder the new year with an honest evaluation of where I am and where I am heading. (be nice to yourself, okay)

6. Plan a fun treat or two. (Brene Brown's second e.course for me)

7. Start something new in my morning quiet time. (for me and loads of women at my church, it is Chase study: chasing after the heart of God)

8. Listen to some good music.

9. Plan a couple dates with friends you did not see over the holidays.

 our super fake fireplace ... a red and white light bulb

10. Schedule some time to sit in front of the fireplace with tea and coffee. (I love both)

11. Read some good books. (I just finished Fault In Our Stars by
John Green and A Week In Winter by Maeve Binchy)

12. Try something new. I am taking Jeff Goins' challenge to write 500 words a day in January. (so far so good)

13. Put cozy soft flannel sheets on your bed.

14. Buy a pretty goblet to drink tons of water and stay hydrated in this cold weather.

15. Get outside for a nightime winter walk, especially while it is snowing. (I did this a couple nights ago and the snow looked like glitter)

 16. And I saved the best for last ... pop some corn, make some sangria and settle in each Sunday night for Downton Abbey, season 4. (I have already seen it, as Christy still has access to British television and it is wonderful)

At our house, we are also getting ready to welcome our grandaughter in just 2 1/2 months. Now that is a reason to be happy.

Have a beautiful month, dear friends.

Linking with Richella. 
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