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Friday, December 31, 2021

Out With 2021--- In With 2022

Well, here it is. The last day of 2021.

I suppose I could sit here and reflect back on the past year. I should give some insightful comments regarding what to do in the new year. 

Basically this past year was pretty rough on me emotionally. Losing my mom in such a horrible car accident was one of the hardest things that I think I had to face during the year. Add to that the beginning of the year with losing our sweet little dog Finnegan to cancer, both have made things rather depressing. Of course with all of the pressures with covid piled on top of that. 

We tried to keep an upbeat attitude, and we've always been the "glass half-full" type of people. We've surged ahead with new projects and we've tried to keep ourselves active and out and about. We got in some camping and we got some things done on the house. I look back over the blog over the past year it seem like we really accomplished a lot. But honestly, sometimes I felt like I was just treading water in one spot trying to keep my head above above the edge and not sink. Not give up. 

So as we sit here this morning, sipping a bit more coffee and looking out the windows, we have to look ahead to 2022. It's all we have. So we better look ahead. Looking back can hurt too much.

On the brighter side, we did get some more snow again this week. It was so beautiful coming down and it has covered everything with a glimmering white coat again. Things don't look as dull or bleak when there's fresh snow on the ground.

Starting each day looking out our new bedroom window has been a treat. The first thing Steve does when he gets out of bed is to open up the slatted venetian blind and look out to see what kind of day it is going to be.

I suppose that each day you wake up 
and you're not six feet under,
 it is a pretty good day?

We have been being careful though as far as covid, which has reared its ugly head to such proportional levels. We do get out and about but do some curbside pickups plus we are fully masked and gloved when we go into a store. We've been trying to arrange our shopping trips all at once early enough in the morning get everything and get back home. It's the best we can do until we get past this next phase of the covid omicron mess.

Since it was Christmas vacation for the school kids, we chose a day to bring over a couple of them to hang out for the day. I had wanted to try making the little pecan Snowball Cookies. So the kids came and helped. The girls baked the cookies while Clayton helped fill the birdfeeders and accompany Grandpa haul things to the recycling center.

Here is the recipe, we made a double batch which gave us approximately four dozen larger cookies.  Next time we might make them smaller. 

This was Chelsea's idea of using a spaghetti noodle scooper ladle with the slits in it for lifting them up after rolling them in the powdered sugar.  It worked great! 

Here are the Little Baker Girls, with their newest racks full of Christmas Snowball treats. Since we are getting together on New Year's Day with our children and grandchildren, this will help round out the tray of Christmas cookies (because we've managed to deplete quite a few of the sugar cut-out cookies that we made last week). These will fill in the gaps!

When we were done baking, Clayton jumped at the chance to man the vacuum cleaner. Any machine that goes or rolls or makes noise is a lot of fun in his nine-year-old head. So he very willingly runs around with the vacuum cleaner to suck up any mess that we left behind.

The kids had a treat after lunch. I let them each choose a candy cane off the Christmas tree to stir their mugs of hot cocoa. It's a nice reward for a morning of hard work for Clayton.

Chelsea, the chief Baker Girl, 
enjoyed her Snowman mug of cocoa

Littlest Baker Girl Claire discovered that a candy cane stick will bend and curve in hot cocoa! She eventually bent it up to the shape of a fish hook and let us "catch" her.


When we brought the kids back home we did a pleasant drive through the local Winter Wonderland display. It is set up by the city of Oconto and the Chamber of Commerce in our city campground in our small town called Holtwood Park. What a perfect place to set up a Christmas display, because of the electrical outlets scattered all throughout the park. Plenty of plug-ins for all of the lit-up displays. Plus the slow winding roads in multiple loops to drive around through the array of Christmas festive light shows.
(my camera wouldn't focus good on the LED lights)

The entrance into the park is lined with very tall pine trees. In the past years, they used to decorate them with the high aerial boom lift of the city trucks. The trees keep growing taller and taller and it's become quite an obstacle to decorate them every year. This year they opted to put in smaller artificial metal ring structure trees to line the entryway. That's a pretty good alternative compared to trying to get the large trees lit up, it's different, it's a change, but it's better than nothing.

This person from AerialPicPro took the time to do an aerial view of the entire winter wonderland display with a drone, set to some pretty uplifting music, and posted it. Here is the link:

We are looking forward tonight to our New Year's Eve with babysitting a bunch of the grandchildren while both of our daughters and their spouses attend a wedding from the other side of the family. A New Year's Eve wedding in such winter festive weather should be kind of special. 

We agreed to take the grandchildren here overnight. We wonder who can make it up till midnight? Perhaps the oldest one, Jameson, the teenager? Will he just sack out on the couch? Will it be the two giggly girl cousins Whitney and Claire? They are sleeping together in the new grankids playroom we completed last month. 

Then on New Year's Day the grandkids will all help get everything ready for our own family Christmas celebration together at our house later on New Years Day!! We try to not schedule it on Christmas Day or Christmas Eve so our children and their spouses could have their own celebrations at their own homes, and try to make the rounds of some of the extended family members. 

By delaying it further down the calendar for us, it gives us our extra special time together after all the flurry and rush rush rush is done. We are looking forward to spending a relaxing New Year's Day with a nice time visiting in our home, a big meal, lots of leftovers, and just enjoying being together with the kids and grandkids.

The next day, Sunday, is going to be a very "Special Epic Day" but I can't say anything yet. It's part of the Christmas present that we are giving to the kids and the grandkids. So I will do a special blog post about Sunday later. After the fact.

That's about it for our New Years. Wrapping up 2021 we are very appreciative and happy that we made it through covid. We came down with it in September although we were both vaccinated, we have our boosters now as of December. We also probably had it back in April of 2020 when it first started, but no testing was available then. We are both doing well now, and all we can ask for is to have our health. If you don't have that, what more what do you have? 

We had our little contest this morning 
with our blood pressure cuff. 
I beat Steve. 


Then we also had our little contest with our O2 meter 
and we are both the same. 
Can't ask for more than that


As we sit here and say goodbye to 2021, we are really hoping that things in 2022 turn around for the better. We need to look ahead.

Sip a little more coffee and enjoy the view.


  1. Karen, I enjoy your blog so much, especially the views of places you visit, and the snowy landscape. We are still fulltime RVers, although not moving around as much, and we workamp in Michigan during the summer months. Happy New Year!

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Thanks for your kind words. Where in Michigan do you work camp at? We go to the Upper Peninsula lot. This summer we might swing down through the lower peninsula

  2. I love the city using an RV park for their display! What a wonderful thing to do! I don't go out much anymore but I would enjoy riding through that park. I miss RVing and often find myself looking at ads for RVs and wishing I could still do that. My current favorite is Roadtrek's SS Agile--everything I need, including lots of solar power, in a short van.

  3. I love the city using an RV park for their display! What a wonderful thing to do! I don't go out much anymore but I would enjoy riding through that park. I miss RVing and often find myself looking at ads for RVs and wishing I could still do that. My current favorite is Roadtrek's SS Agile--everything I need, including lots of solar power, in a short van.

  4. Happy New Year to you and yours! Wishing you all the best in 2022.

  5. Thannk you so much for all of your posts during the year. I love following all of you and your family's doin's and as a fellow weaver love any and all fiber posts.

  6. Happy new year my friend. I enjoy our occasional chat. I have 2 thread cutters ordered. Will ship jan. 12!

    Stay well.

  7. Happy New Year to you both! We also always do Christmas later.. the first weekend in January is our traditional date. Sometimes that even is the New Years weekend. Much more fun when things are more relaxed.
    The snow is so pretty, but the temps here are brutal.
    Have a very good 2022


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