Howdy-do darlin’s! Well it’s been a busy start to the new year! I had a wonderful holiday season with all 4 of my kids, their spouses and babies! I was so thrilled they all came home for Christmas! There was lots of food, fun, games and laughter! We made some wonderful memories that will keep my heart warm for years to come! It was like old times sitting around the supper table every night! Every once in a while I would sit back and just watch as my family ate, talked and laughed…treasuring every moment.
My son J.J. and his adorable wife Tiffany, who came out from California, left the day after Christmas and then I had a second wave of company arrive that same day… my brother and sister-in-law from New York. That evening, after we got back from picking them up at the airport my daughter Summer had an allergic reaction to something so we had to take her to the ER around midnight. (She’s fine now) Then a few days later I had to take my hubby to the ER in the middle of the night. We got back home at 4 in the morning. It turned out to be a bad case of the flu…I’m so glad it wasn’t Pneumonia. (Thankfully, he’s all better now too!). Whew!
Once our company left I had a mountain of laundry, an empty cupboard (like Old Mother Hubbard!) and of course all of my Christmas decorations waiting to be put away… not to mention my little shop at Spring Creek Antique mall that needed attention. Eeeeeek! Boy did I have a lot of work to do!
I usually take the days after Christmas and just before January 1st to sit down and reflect the past year and to plan out my new goals, which, by the way, I LOVE to do! But with all of the merriment of company, frequent trips to the ER and taking care of hubby, there just wasn’t time. Then with the above mentioned and monumental task of bringing order back into my home (which I had to tackle first) I felt like I was so far behind with my fresh start to the New Year. But sometimes things just happen and we have to be flexible! No sense in fretting! It’s doesn’t help anyway! In fact it makes things worse! So I just decided that it was a great idea to use the whole month of January to pray and plan for the upcoming year. That made me feel so much better! Now I don’t feel like I’m “late for a very important date!” like the rabbit in Alice in Wonderland! The good news is while I was doing laundry, driving to the market and putting away all of the glitter and garlands, I listened to some podcasts with such great content about goal setting that I truly believe is going to help me become more productive this year! And I’m so excited! (I ‘ll share the links to these podcasts below!)
Like clockwork, a word seems to always pop in my head around this time that becomes my theme for the New Year. My word this year is “Simplify”. Plain and simple. I truly want to pare down, (and I mean way down), any excess stuff. I want to clear out all that extra clutter from my closets and cupboards that requires time consuming maintenance (which can be very distracting) so that I can focus more on cultivating and savoring a simpler life, full of vintage values, and old-fashioned goodness. I want to bring the simple goodness of the Mayberry kind of life back! Serving up homemade pie that’s been cooling on the window sill AND southern hospitality that’s fresh-as-a-daisy-in-a-mason-jar while whistling-a-happy-tune kind of life! I want to preserve the best from the past in every aspect of my life. And I want to have more time to share these joy-FULL, nod-to-Mayberry, down-home ideas, recipes and thoughts with YOU!
So in order for me to simplify and bring back the sweet goodness of that “Mayberry” kind of life, I had to set goals for myself. Not having the best success in the past in reaching all of my goals I decided to search for a little help. One of my favorite podcasters and bloggers regarding personal productivity, is Michael Hyatt. If you haven’t discovered him yet you MUST check him out. He’s got so much wisdom and he shares it generously. Here’s a couple things that I learned from him in regards to goal setting:
1. In order for us to achieve our goals we must write them down. This will clarify what we want. When we write down our goals we determine our destination…our desired end result. It becomes our roadmap. This “roadmap” helps us get to where we want to go. What’s a gal to do if she has a dream but it just keeps swirling ’round and ’round in her pretty little head, and it never comes true? She needs to get it down on paper. And then little by little start taking those baby-steps to making that dream a reality!
2. Ask yourself “why is this goal important?”. (Michael says “You need to answer the “why” or you’ll lose your way…your motivation”). Ask yourself what do I have to gain if I achieve my goal? What do I have to lose if I don’t?
Take our home for instance. We all want a happy, clean, sparkling, nurturing home that smells good, feels cozy and joyful, where nutritious meals are served and where our family loves to be, right? Why? Because we want to provide a healthful place where our family feels loved, blessed, cared for, and comforted in their body, mind and emotions.
What do we have to gain if we achieve this goal? We’ll have a happy, clean, sparkling, nurturing home that feels cozy and smells good (from the yummy meals prepared) which will be a blessing and a comfort to our family! Where happy memories of HOME will be made! That’s a lot to gain!!
What do we have to lose? Well, if we neglect to tidy our nest, letting clutter rule the roost, are careless to provide nutritious meals for our family, have no interest in creating happy memories with our loved ones (including our grand-littles) then what we end up with is a sad, messy, stale, gloomy, and perhaps even, angry environment. We lose out on the best for our family. Oh no! We don’t want that! No-sir-ee!
So you see darlin’, writing down what we want and why we want it makes so much sense! On those days went we don’t feel like doing laundry, cooking dinner or cleaning the toilet we need to go review our “why” to this goal. We need to remind ourselves what we have to gain and what we have to lose. Reading the rewards and the consequences again will give us the motivation to help us pull up our cute, cowgirl bootstraps to get the job done! Can I get a YEE HAW?
Here’s the thing…we have to change our mindset especially if we have a tendency to procrastinate…and that would be me! Somewhere I heard this statement “If you want to be…DO!” In other words, if you want to BE something then you have to DO something about it. For example, if you want to be strong and healthy, then you have to eat healthy foods, exercise and drink plenty of water. If you don’t, then you won’t be healthy. Or, if you want to be organized then you have to clear out the clutter, and put things in the proper place. If you don’t, then your house may look and smell like a pig-pen (oink-oink!). If you want to be the best pie baker ev-ah, then you need to research recipes, techniques and practice making pies. It’s a pretty simple concept really. We must DO whatever it is that will help us BE the person we want to be. It’s our choice!
So, here’s what I did: I got a cute binder and wrote down 10 categories…one category per page… and then made a list of a few goals under each category title:
1. Bless The Lord (My spiritual goals): My relationship with Jesus comes first. I’m getting up early to spend time with the Lord, read His word, pray, and write in my journal. “Seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, then all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33
2. Fit-As-A-Fiddle (My physical goals): I made a list of specific things I MUST do every day to stay healthy. This also includes ways to stay emotionally healthy by writing down what I’m thankful for daily.
3. Home Folks (my family goals): I made a list of specific things I can to do bless my family, including praying for them every day.
4. Good Mornin’ (my morning routine): I made a list of everything I MUST do every morning such as, get up early to have my devotions, drink water, write in my journal, exercise, make bed, listen to an inspirational podcast or audio book while getting dressed, eat breakfast, take vitamins, etc.
5. Home Sweet Home (my daily household chores): I made a list of my daily routine for keeping my house clean ‘n’ smelling good and creating a happy home atmosphere.
6. I’m Fixin’ To: This is my simplify /get clutter-free goal page. I made a list of each room, closet and cupboard that I need to clean out. I made an appointment on my calendar for the days I’ll be working on these projects. One by one I’ll be checking them off! Yaw Hooooo!
7. Mayberry Goodness: I made a list of 15 things I can do to bring a little Mayberry back like; make homemade jam to share with friends, keep a good attitude, write something I’m thankful for every day, hum a happy tune throughout my day, be as-sweet-as-sweet-tea to my family and folks I meet, have a servants heart like Aunt Bee, keep on the look-out to help someone in need, live the Golden Rule, go for drives down country roads, sit on the front porch with my hubby, wave at the neighbors, watch an episode of Mayberry with my family every night…and a few more!
8. Sugar Pie Farmhouse: I’ve begun an idea notebook for blog post ideas as well as projects to work on for the 2014 (with deadlines for completion) to bring SWEET, WONDERFUL, YOU, the best content I can give ya!
9. Farm Fresh Dreams: This is where I listed the things I’m dreaming of for the future like raising chickens (in a really cute chicken coop,) building a white farmhouse etc.
10. Nighty Night: This is my list of things I need to do before going to bed to insure a sweet nights sleep.
Life is short and I don’t want to waste a minute of it! I want to fulfill the destiny that the Lord has designed for me on this earth! I know you want that too! If you would like to learn more about goal setting from Michael Hyatt, here are some links to get you started to make this your best year EV-AH!
5 Reasons Why You Should Commit Your Goals To Writing
Replay Of Live Q & A Call About Goal Setting
How to Get Clear, Get Motivated, and Get Started in 2014
The 10 Biggest Mistakes People Make In Setting Goals
Thank you so much for stopping by for some Farm Fresh New Year Pie! I hope my thoughts today give you just the nudge you need to create the life you’re dreaming of! As always, I pray for each one of you! As I read your gracious comments I speak your name out loud and say a prayer for you! God knows your needs and loves you more than you could ever know!
I would love for you to share a goal you’d like to reach this year
or any goal setting tips that have worked for you!
God bless your darlin’ heart!
I’ll see you soon if the Good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise!
Sugar and hugs,
Merry Christmas Sugar Pie Darlin!! I’m so thrilled that you came to share some Christmas joy with me! I’ve been happily decking the halls, hanging wreaths, adorning my mantles with twinkly lights and garlands, while sipping Eggnog and listening to a lot of Bing Crosby and Amy Grant. My Nativity scene got center stage, it’s one of the things I look forward to the most when I’m decorating for Christmas. Baby Jesus in the manger represents the whole reason why we are celebrating! “Joy to the world The Lord is come…!” Now go grab a cup of something yummy to sip and turn on your favorite Christmas music! May your heart be blessed and filled with love as I welcome sweet, adorable, you into my home this Christmas…
There’s a chill in the air.
The lights of home beckon you, dear one, to come in from of the cold!
So come on in, where it’s warm and cozy and sparkly!
Just inside the front door this happy, little, snow scene greets you!
A sled, ice skates and snowballs…
just waiting for a romp in the frosty snow!
The Good Old days!
“The ice is sparkling cold and clear,
the laughing girls and boys are here,
and skates so merrily with jingle bells ring,
as over the ice we go,
Heigh-o Heigh-o- Heigh-o!”
~1950 Children’s song Book
Weeeee! This is SNOW fun!!
A bucket-full of icy snowballs
and a sweet little snowbird from Target!
Sing a song of snowflakes flying in the air,
sing a song of sleigh-bells tinkling everywhere
Earth in dazzling white, sparkling in the light.
It’s so funny that these kids are just a-waitin’
for the horse to get-a-move-on! Ha!
Giddy-up horsey!! Umm…Horsey!
HELLO! (I wonder how long they sat there!)
Oh and who do we have here?
It’s my grandson Johnny, looking quite dapper and dashing! A few of my Grand-littles came by while I was doing my photo shoot. I couldn’t resist taking a few pics of my cuties! During this photo we were singing Jingle Bells…he was swaying back and forth to the melody! ”Dashing through the snow, in a one horse open sleigh, O’er the fields we go, laughing all the way! HEY!”
”The snow is falling all around,
like a beautiful blanket it covers the ground;
It glistens and shines in the pale moonlight
like a million stars all shining bright.
Even the houses look happy tonight…
In the hearths, yule logs burn warm and bright.”
How ’bout a hot cup of Christmas TREE? Tee hee! I’ve had this silver tea service since my kids were babies. I love using things that I already have to decorate with!
This jolly snowman has been around for a long time too!
I love that he’s wearing snow-pants and fancy shoes! Ha!
My vintage horse and cow toys are all dressed up for the season!
“The cattle are lowing, The poor Baby wakes,
But little Lord Jesus, No crying He makes.
I love Thee, Lord Jesus; Look down from the sky,
And stay by my cradle,Till morning is nigh.”
~Away in the Manger
“The Light that shines from the humble manger
is strong enough to lighten our way to the end of our days.”
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” 2 Corinthians 9:15
Miss Polly June…my real live baby doll! Here she is sitting on the cow!
She’s a cow-girl now! Yee haw!
I need to kiss those cheeks!
My other grand-son Kade came over too!
I love having my grand-littles live close by!
Cousins Kade and Johnny singing more Jingle Bells.
This scene did not last long…
they were up and running around in a flash!
I love Christmas. Christmas is love.
Love came down from heaven…Jesus is love. (“God is Love” 1 John 4:8) He left the splendor and glory of heaven to bring peace, joy, everlasting love and abundant life to a fallen world. He could not bear the thought of living in eternity without us…He loves us so!! So He came, as a sweet baby boy, born in a manger. He grew up and was crucified on a cross to pay the debt of our sins. (“The wages of sin is death but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” Romans 6:23) He chose to take our place for a debt that we owed. Jesus died for us. Oh, but the great and wonderful news of the gospel is that on the third day, as the scriptures foretold, he came back to life! He’s alive! Our rescuer! The lover of our soul!
“For God so loved the world that whosoever believes in Him, shall not perish, but have everlasting life. For God did not send His son into the world to condemn the world but to save the world through Him.” John 3:16,17
Jesus chose to come, to die, to save us (such Love!!). In turn we must choose Him to be able to go to heaven and be with Him in forever. He gave us that choice. Choose Love! If you need comfort, hope, or need to know wonderful Jesus click here.
I share the good news of the gospel because I love you. Jesus is the reason for my joy, peace and hope, so of course I would want the same for you, dear darlin’!
One of my most favorite songs in the whole wide world is,
Mary Did You Know such and amazing song:
To hear it click here
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy will one day walk on water?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy will save our sons and daughters?
Did you know
That your baby boy has come to make you new?
This child that you’ve delivered
Will soon deliver you
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy would give sight to a blind man?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy would calm a storm with his hand?
Did you know
That your baby boy has walked where angels trod?
And when you kiss your little baby
You’ve kissed the face of God
Mary, did you know?
The blind will see
The deaf will hear
And the dead will live again
The lame will leap
The dumb will speak
The praises of the lamb
Mary, did you know
That your baby boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary did you know
That your baby boy would one day rule the nations?
Did you know
That your baby boy is heaven’s perfect lamb?
This sleeping child you’re holding
Is the great I am
~Song written by Mark Lowry~
“Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart.” Luke 2:19
Can you tell that I LOVE Jesus?
“Heap on more wood! The wind is chill; But let it whistle as it will,
We’ll keep our Christmas merry still.”
~ Sir Walter Scott
Christmastime is sure to find me
on a high snow-covered hill,
Where an old farmhouse is standing weather-tight and sturdy still
There the plumes of smoke ascending from the Chimneys low and wide
And are a silent invitation to the glowing fires inside.
Where the warm sweet air is laden with fragrance that combines
The pleasant smells of cookery and the spicy scent of pines.
~ Ida M. Brookshire
One of my favorite finds this fall was this lighted Marquee metal star.
I got it at a vintage Junkin’ show called Two Friends and Junk.
”O star of wonder, star of night,
Star with royal beauty bright,
Westward leading, still proceeding,
Guide us to thy perfect Light.”
~We Three Kings Christmas Carol
You may remember this vintage wooden tool box, in my Fall Home Tour, it became a perfect book holder on my coffee table. I replaced my Autumn inspired books with Christmasy ones. I love the convenience of having some of my favorite books handy and being able to see their pretty covers makes me happy!
Ahhh…there’s nothing like curling up with a good book
and a mug of hot chocolate by a crackling fire!
The Pastry Queen Christmas, Baby’s Christmas,
The Farm Chicks Christmas, Christmas in My Heart, What God Wants For Christmas,
A Little House Christmas, Gooseberry Patch Comfort & Joy
Sitting at the player piano…the boys are singing again!
Yes…JINGLE BELLS! Teehee!
My little vintage child’s kitchen cupboard
all gussied up with candy canes and silver garland.
Jars of plum jam from summer’s bounty!
“I love all the smells of Christmas;
bayberry candles, freshly cut evergreens,
the smells of baking and cooking~
vanilla, cinnamon, apple pies,
and all the other things that make Christmastime
like a little bit of heaven on earth.” ~ Kathy Healy
I found a wee little spot for one of my “aged” child’s stockings that I made for my little shop at Spring Creek Tea Room/ Antique Mall. Complete with a little frosted, rusty bell, a sprig of boxwood and a candy cane. It fits perfectly next to my hubby’s grandma’s recipe for Pound Cake, from her friend Dorothy. The vanilla stains are my favorite part…evidence of mixing, stirring and baking a treat that made everyone swoon and lick their lips.
Memories of grandma’s are the best! Delicious aromas of supper cookin’, and scrumptious desserts are baked into the walls. Just walking into the house and taking a deep breath (ahhh!), a sense of calm comes over you. It’s the most nurturing and loving feeling EV-AH!!
Grandma’s kitchen…pure coziness!
The place where the cookie jar is always filled,
and a listening ear is ready to hear.
Here’s my hubby’s grandma, little Naomi.
Her signature Christmas treat was gingersnap cookies.
I want to pass along that tradition.
I also want to bake up batches of my grandma’s Italian cookies!
I have a lot of baking to do!
I want to be the kind of grandma
that my grandkids love to be with.
I heard a wonderful quote the other day,
and it fits for anything we want in life:
If you want to be…DO!
That just struck a chord in my heart.
If I want to be something I need to do something about it!
And so I’ll try to make my home as cozy and happy as I can…
and keep the cookie jar filled…and play games,
read stories…tell my loved ones I love them…and give lots of hugs.
After I took this photo and uploaded it I noticed a container of frosted shredded wheat cereal in the background. I think someone was getting the grand-youngin’s a snack…and that’s how it should be! Just keepin’ it real!
I think it would be so fun to have an old red Ford truck! But for now I’m happy with this vintage toy truck, that, without a doubt, gave some cute little boy a lot of happy playtime! I mean this truck was well loved! The cute jersey cow is from Michael’s Craft store…she was singing my name…well, maybe she was mooing my name! Ha! (Oh Moothie!) Vintage Christmas ornaments from my own childhood fill the little white bowl. Happy memories warm my heart whenever I look at them!
Nightfall. Candles glowing.
All is calm. All is bright.
So thankful for home.
My baking center/pantry dolled up for Christmas.
Ready to make my Christmas pies and cookies.
My favorite Pie Cookbook, Sweetie-licious Pies,
has a place of honor sitting on my baking center…
It’s my inspiration as I roll out my dough and fill my pies.
The base fell off of this tinsel Christmas tree
so I stuck it in an old milk bottle filled with salt.
Very farmy–Me likey!!
Well, thank you darlin’ so much for coming by for some Christmas pie!
I loved sharing my heart for home with you!
I so appreciate your comments,
they are the fuel that keeps me going!!
So, pretty please with a cherry on top, do say howdy!
And let me know where you call home,
it’s always fun for me to see which town, state or country you live in.
Be sure to follow me on FACEBOOK,
AND TWITTER (sugarpiefarm)!
GOD BLESS YOUR DARLIN’ HEART!
I WISH YOU A VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS!