We left within hours of me getting off work - happily our flight was delayed so we had a little extra time to get to the airport. It wasn't so happy on the other end when we finally arrived at our hotel at 3:30 am. But we had a fantastic although very chilly time. It hovered in the teen temperatures the entire time we were there.
It was so lovely to spend time with my immediate and extended family. I must confess I barely recognize my hometown anymore because it has grown and changed so much. I really have to concentrate to find my way around, hit the right freeway exits and remember where things are. One of our best days was going on a drive up Provo Canyon to Sundance, Midway and Heber. It was so beautiful and good for the soul!
We returned from our trip in time for me to hit the office for 4 days and then we slid into the lovely three-day New Year's Weekend with joy. We did a big grocery shop on Thursday after I got off work and by the time we got it all home and put away it was getting too late to make the big meal we'd planned. So we made lots of finger foods and snacks and settled into game night by the fireplace and then a movie and finally the big countdown to the new year. Once kiddo went to sleep, for some reason The Man and I got motivated to work on the house --such an odd time to do that! But we ended up unpacking several boxes and putting quite a few things away.
It was a nice time for me. I found a few of my very personal small treasures, little pieces of art, antique boxes, family photos, etc. Things I had forgotten I have while they've been in storage the past year. What a nice way to start a new year by finding some sweet memories and little things that make me so happy and bring more of myself into the new home.
Friday was "PJs all day" day. I have three days I have nominated at days you don't have to get dressed or leave the house -- the day after Thanksgiving, Christmas Day and New Year's Day. That's not to say I might not have another day or two throughout the year or that I do stay in my PJs all day on those days because sometimes it just starts feeling yucky not to get dressed and tidied up. But if we want to, we can be lazy and in our PJs without guilt. Because of our very late night, I slept very late. We had a big brunch, our favorite breakfast foods and the first time we have made our special pancakes in a year. It felt good to get back to an old routine that we so enjoy.
Saturday we were quite industrious and got in a workout, time outside on a gorgeous sunny day, ate some great homemade food, played games again, watched Spaceballs (so silly) and just enjoyed being all together as a family and relaxing. This was probably my favorite day of the entire holiday because it was so stress free and filled with things I really value as important and meaningful to my life.
Sunday I made a fantastic "copy cat" beef barbacoa recipe in the slow cooker. Now that our church is 1-4pm (ugh) I'm trying to make the most of it by making meal prep very quick and easy. I think we might actually really like this schedule because we don't have to wake up early, I have time to accomplish a couple of things in the morning and prep for after-church food. After we got home we quickly pulled together all the needed ingredients for barbacoa burritos and beans and rice and sat down to a nice dinner.
After dinner we had some nice family time, doing 25 Days of Christ, which we have not yet finished because of travel. Then we all went our ways to have a couple of hours of quiet time before bed. I am liking this routine we created today and am thinking it may be quite perfect for us as we look to a new week and need time to ourselves. It's nice to have a little more so we can each have a room of our own for solitude and quite for a while.
One of my goals for this year is more blogging. I have missed it. I have missed interacting with you. I have missed the creative outlet and writing time. This blog is the perfect way for me to express my most authentic self and so it's important to me. There isn't anywhere else in my life that I have freedom to create, write about and share whatever I want, whenever I want. I like that and feel it's important. Plus I have had so many fantastic experiences and met so many great friends through blogging over the past six years - I want more of that.
So watch for more blog posts this coming year. I have several in the works now and am really excited to share more of our new house adventures and our new city, and continue on the road to peaceful, happy, stylish living. Wishing you the very happiest of new years and hope we'll connect here often. Watch for a new post on Wednesday. I'll share my theme for 2016 - it's a good one and I am excited for the challenge.