HOLIDAYS

I hope you all had a very nice Christmas despite the challenges of this year.

We have had a Koselig holiday season. Koselig is a concept that is deeply rooted in Norwegian culture. It is the feeling of coziness and being comfortable. It is about being content and creating a pleasant environment. it is about intimacy and warmth.

Our “big” gift to each other was the Bibles that we gave each in early December for what we call Hanukkah-mas-ary because Hanukkah, Christmas, and our wedding anniversary are all celebrated in December. However, just for fun, on Christmas Eve we went to Goodwill to see what treasures we could find. I bought a few books and warm sweatshirts. EJ didn’t really find much this time. Sometimes he finds the treasures, sometimes I do, and sometimes we both do. It doesn’t really matter what we find–the treasure hunting is what we enjoy.

EJ has about 11 days off work for Christmas–from December 24th through January 3rd. We have mostly been hanging out together, puttering around. I made homemade crackers a couple of times. I’ve never made them before, but I thought I’d try it so we could just make more if we ran out rather than depend on the stores. I’ve been trying out different recipes, trying to find the one I like best. I’m also working on my technique. As the quote goes, “Practice makes perfect” and practice is yummy when it involves food. The first recipe I tried, the crackers turned out pretty well but the dough was rather stiff and difficult to roll out. I got distracted when making the second recipe and I forgot to include a key ingredient–the butter. Oops. The crackers turned out ok, but I would like to make the recipe with all the ingredients.

I was thinking about making rock candy but we have had trouble finding the Lorann oil flavors that we like. Cinnamon and spearmint are my favorite flavors. EJ found cinnamon but he couldn’t find spearmint. He said there weren’t many flavors left at the only store we have found them at. He chose butterscotch for himself, but accidentally got Butter Almond. Sometimes I chuckle when I think about making candy because I remember my sister saying she couldn’t make candy one year because we didn’t have enough snow. Our Mom used to quickly cool the candy by placing the pan it was in into a larger pan filled snow that she had scooped from the yard. My sister didn’t consider that the snow was just a convenient method and the candy could be cooled in other ways. Laugh.

I was thinking about also trying my hand at making homemade pretzels. I have never made pretzels before, except years ago when we had a bread machine. The bread machine only lasted a few months and we never replaced it when it broke down.

My homemade suet

The wild birds have eaten most of the suet I made them so I made them more yesterday. I used the deer fat that EJ rendered. The birds like it. 🙂

Besides cooking, I organized the closet in our bedroom. I’ve also been working on a crocheted hooded scarf of my own design. I hope to make either the finished scarf or the pattern available for sale.

One of my hens died. 😥 I am not sure what she died of or even exactly when she died. The chickens all have favorite places in the coop where they like to roost. We have a fancy coop and a wooden dog house inside the 12′ x 10′ shed that is our coop. Most of the chickens like roosting on top of the fancy coop and dog house, but several like roosting inside of them. Anyway, I only count the chickens at night to make sure they are all safely inside and I assumed the hen was sleeping in her favorite place waaaay back in the lowest level of the fancy coop. I only got suspicious on Sunday night so I checked back there Monday afternoon and she was still there. We pulled her out and, yup, she was dead. 😥 I hate losing chickens, although I know that it happens sometimes.

The ring on the back of Hannah Joy’s harness that I attach her leash to broke. I can still attach her leash to the ring on the chest of her harness but she doesn’t like that as much because she tends to get tangled up in it. I’ve ordered her a new harness, which is scheduled to arrive tomorrow. I chose a blue one for her which should look good against her pretty reddish fur.

We’ve had a very mild winter. We only got measurable snow a week or so ago. The temperatures had been relatively warm, but now they are cold enough that I have to bundle up when I go outside. We keep our house a bit cool to save on heating costs so I keep warmer by wearing sweatshirts/sweaters, covering up with a lap blanket, and holding and drinking hot coffee or tea. Hannah Joy likes to sleep on my lap under the blanket, and her body heat also helps me keep warm. However, whenever she hears a noise–a loud vehicle out on the road, the cats having a tussle, or any other noise she finds interesting–she suddenly erupts out of the blanket and my crocheting, the book I’m reading, or the cup I am holding is totally disrupted. I’ve had to change and wash my clothes–and the lap blanket–the last couple of days because Hannah Joy’s eruption splashed my coffee all over me. Silly dog.

<p value="<amp-fit-text layout="fixed-height" min-font-size="6" max-font-size="72" height="80">It is our custom on New Year's Eve to make homemade pizza and eat a variety of chips, Fritos, and Doritoes. I will make the pizza tomorrow and EJ will probably go shopping for the salty snacks. In the evenings, we always binge-watch a TV series or many-part movie (such as LOTR). EJ and I have been re-watching one of our favorite TV series on Amazon Prime called Stargate SG-1 for the last week or two. It is leaving Amazon Prime on January 1 so we are trying to get through it. Yesterday we were only on Season 6 so we started skipping to our favorite episodes and we are now on Season 8. Hopefully, we can finish the remaining seasons tomorrow night before the series disappears forever. It is our custom on New Year’s Eve to make homemade pizza and eat a variety of chips, Fritos, and Doritoes. I will make the pizza tomorrow and EJ will probably go shopping for the salty snacks. In the evenings, we always binge-watch a TV series or many-part movie (such as LOTR). EJ and I have been re-watching one of our favorite TV series on Amazon Prime called Stargate SG-1 for the last week or two. It is leaving Amazon Prime on January 1 so we are trying to get through it. Yesterday we were only on Season 6 so we started skipping to our favorite episodes and we are now on Season 8. Hopefully, we can finish the remaining seasons tomorrow night before the series disappears forever.

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