Friday, December 15, 2017

Christmassy mood and some heartwarming advice

Before you look at all my beautiful Christmassy holiday-ish pictures, and before you start feeling insecure and compare yourself and feel inadequate because you didn't bake fancy cookies yet, or you didn't knit cute Christmas ornaments, or you don't have a handmade advent calendar or wreath... I want you to know this:

Christmas can be really, really hard.  So many expectations, so much to do, so much to strive for, so much comparison going on, so many pinterest-worthy ideas you will never implement...

I usually don't like Christmas all that much, because of the above-mentioned reasons, and because of all the yucky commercialism associated with it, and because of sad childhood memories involving Christmas in my homeland of Germany.

But since I have three children who happen to be totally into Christmas, I do try to get over myself and decorate the house, endure endless Christmas songs on the radio, and bake cookies.

And this year, I am actually really into this Christmas spirit thing.

I made an advent calendar for the kids, and they take turns opening one little gift every morning.  

We also decorated the tree without squabbling.

And I did knit some pretty cute ornaments this year...

About the whole cookie baking scene: My 12-year old son initiated a cookie baking session, and we all got into it.  We actually got pretty professional when it got to decorating the things, all with a little powdered sugar, sprinkles and cocoa.  I also discovered natural food coloring made with healthy ingredients.

Since the oven was on, I decided to make some Foccacia bread to go along with the sweet stuff.

In terms of decorating, we've been going nuts with paper snowflakes and evergreen wreaths.  

In fact, I filmed tutorials on how to make both of them, and if you want to be a patron of our blog, you can access them here at our Patron-only section of the website (along with my recipe and tutorial for making the best cheese cake you ever had).

I wrote an article on how to prevent and treat cold and flu for our local magazine Grow Northwest, and Steve and I did a Facebook Live about it where we teach how to use our favorite natural remedies for cold and flu.  If you want to watch us (we are pretty fun), you can watch that here.

One of the things I talk about in the article and video is how to make natural cough syrup with onion and honey, and the other is a recipe for a ginger/lemonade/cayenne drink to help your immune system.

And talking of drink, I'm in full swing making lots of Kombucha.  I teach how to do this for the fraction of the cost of buying it here.

Also, we bottled our hard cider we made in the fall.  It's good!  Potent!  Talk about medicine!

My parting words today:  If you have a hard time with Christmas, it's okay.  You are not alone.  If you love Christmas and you think I'm nuts saying anyone could feel conflicting emotions around it, it's okay, too.  I'm happy for you!

For the rest of us, let's just take the good about this holiday season: the love, the light, the giving spirit, the good food, the generosity.

Allow yourself to relax a little.  It doesn't have to be perfect, okay?  Light candles.  Slow down.  Kiss your loved ones.

Sending a huge amount of love to y'all!

PS: If you want to support this blog, please go here and do it.  Thank you!!!


  1. three things: I used to have conflict at Christmas. When i was a kid and my dad was the Grinch. And then when my ex-husband was argumentative and didn't want a tree even for out kid. Grinch! But now my new partner is into it. yes, Christmas can be challenging.

    You make me want to knit tree ornaments! Maybe you should make a tutorial for that!

    Who made the gorgeous silk window flags?

    We're going to the VA hospital today to serve (a good!) lunch to convalescing soldiers. If a person feels sorry at Christmas so out and help someone! Even if you don't, go out and help!

    1. Awww... not even a tree for your kids... Booo.
      The silk flags are from Love them.
      Good for you for serving a meal to soldiers! Bless your heart!

    2. Oh No we had a tree. It was after much gnashing of teeth and wailing on his part. I just did it. Then I decided - because of even worse things - I couldn't take any more Christmas's with that Grinch. Life is now good. May we gain enlightenment, every one. Even that one!

    3. Good Karma Flags are in Nevada City CA! Near here!

  2. "Go Out" not "So" out. I always type "out" for "our"!

  3. Your tree is so cheery and lovely!

    1. Thanks! In the darkest time of year, it's nice to have a cheerful corner in the living room!

  4. You know.... we share a lot of sentiments about christmas.
    And we actually turn away from it for the first time this year. Start a new familytradition. No presents, no tree and *fingers crossed* no electronics! And the kids agree with that! Christmas in its current state has lost all meaning to us. I also plan to deliberately pay attention to an actual event; winter solstice.
    Instead there will be good food, baking, crackling fire in the fireplace, some homemade decorations, if only for the smell of pine and spruce, candlelight, playing games, reading a book and just spend time together.
    We have no family to spend time with, so it will be just us.

    Either way... A very merry christmas (or whatever it is you celebrate) to you and to everyone reading this.

    1. Ohhhhhh, Ron, I love your new tradition so much!!!!!

    2. I love it, too! We always have our Solstice bonfire where we reflect on how we got here (in the darkness) and celebrate the return of the sun (enlightenment). Then we dance, whoop and holler around the bonfire like wild indians. Just for fun.


Click on the image to download my free ebook and to join my mailing list

Become a patron!!!

If you like our blog, please become a patron. What the heck does that mean? As a patron, you give us as little as $1 a month (or as much as $20 a month) to show your support and get exclusive, patron-only content from us. You will get tutorials, recipes, inspiration, and support from us, the homesteading, wilderness and homeschooling experts! You can cancel anytime!

Popular Posts