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Coffee and Conversation #126 – How are you spending New Year’s?

Good morning and welcome to Coffee and Conversation #126 – hosted by PatAndCandy.com!

Welcome to Coffee & Conversation #126 - and Happy New Year!


…and this week we wish you all the best in 2017! Happy (almost) New Year!

My family has a long-standing tradition that began when our kids were little. We (the parents involved) were feeling a little sorry for ourselves as we reminisced about BC (before children) New Year’s Eves when we “got” to go out. With young kids who needed a semi-decent bed time, those days were long gone…

And then we decided to do a family sleepover! The plan was to alternate homes each year and host a family New Year’s Eve party. No travel on the roads, and plenty of uninterrupted talk time (for the moms), game time (for the dads and kiddos) and eating time (for all). What a blast! We hunker down with plenty of food – no sit-down dinners, just all night grazing. Sometimes we’ll invite other families over. (That was a wonderful tweak after our dear friends moved away, allowing us to meet their new friends, too.) We’ve been doing this for the past 20-or-so years now, despite our oldest kids “up and marrying” and moving away, or in college and getting lives of their own.

You may not have any New Year’s traditions, but may I encourage you to establish some sort of holiday tradition at some point? Believe me: it’s never too late to start! Kids thrive on habit and pattern and a certain amount of predictability. It helps them mark time and feel secure and comfortable in their surroundings.

A new tradition of sorts we’re in the process of establishing is a Word of the Year. I’ve been doing this for a few years now, and my kids have seen how it has personally impacted me. As they’re all in middle- and high-school now (at least the ones still at home), I’ve encouraged them to discover a Word of their own. Even though you may have younger ones, I do believe that younger kids could do this. Even older elementary school-aged kids could benefit from the process of thinking about, praying over and discussing the idea. It would be a great topic for a family conversation!

If you give it a shot, I’d love to hear how it goes.  Either way, wishing you a Happy New Year, friends 🙂

No matter what your Word of the Year is, we wish you Joy throughout this Christmas season and the coming year!

No matter what your Word of the Year is, we wish you Joy throughout this Christmas season and the coming year!


Now, on to our features!

In honor of all the snacking we like to do during New Year’s eve, our features seem to all be foodie related, starting with…

Christmas Tree cheese plateChristmas Tree cheese plate

OK, even though Christmas is “over”, doesn’t this look so festive? And it’s easy-peasy – she even has a time-lapse video showing her making one! From Jennifer at JenniferPriest.com

Every Christmas we skip the traditional dinner and make cheese and cold cut platters, sandwiches, and veggie plates in the tradition of my husband’s family. Cheese and meat arranged into shapes is one of the best things ever! This Thanksgiving, we made a turkey shaped cheese plate and I thought, you know, that would be super cute for Christmas too. Well, not a turkey! Since I am working really hard to stay on a paleo diet, I had to make sure there were options for me on these holiday cheese plates. Here’s how I accomplished that with this Christmas Tree Cheese Plate.


Ultimate Cookie BloopersUltimate Cookie Bloopers

Sure, Marilyn calls these bloopers, mostly I think because her photos have gotten SO much better over time. But don’t be led to think the same about the cookies! I’ve made a few of the recipes she’s shared with us, and even tho I haven’t tried all these cookie recipes, I have a hard time believing that ANY of them are bloopers. From Marilyn at Marilyn’sTreats.

With all the images of the perfect cookie going around the internet, I almost didn’t publish this collection. But I figured why not. This collection shows my cookie victories, tips, and my cookie bloopers. Unfortunately, the bloopers list is a bit longer than my victories. This Ultimate Cookie List was compiled from my archive of Holiday Cookies appearing on Marilyns Treats. Scroll through the list and laugh along with me at some of these photos.


Sweet and Sticky WingsSweet and Sticky Wings

Hmmm, I might leave out the “sticky”, too. And Jan explains just how to do it. But other than that I can’t wait to present these gems to my friends on New Year’s Eve! From Jan at Frugal in Florida.

The holidays are upon us and I don’t know about you but it’s also known as Appetizer Season in my house! That’s why you’ve been seeing quite a few posts with appetizers (oh, yeah, and soup, because I’m still waiting for cooler weather here!)

I made these the first time when I was having a girls night and freaked out when I realized thought that I wouldn’t have enough food to go around … how silly of ME …
Alternate featureShredded Salsa Chicken – InstantPot Style (I don’t have an InstantPot, but the recipe looks like a keeper, anyway!


Thank you all so much for your inspiration and timely words…

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Pat is a Yankee city-girl who has been adopted by the sleepy, sunny south. Married for 30 years and the mother of 5, she woke up one day recently to discover she reached the stage of life where she is the “older woman” described in Titus 2:3-5. A coffee lover, the purchase of a coffee shop a few years ago was her personal foray into the small, family-owned business arena.Today, PatAndCandy.com is her outlet for packaging up and sharing the nuggets of wisdom God and life experiences have taught her.
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9 Responses to Coffee and Conversation #126 – How are you spending New Year’s?

  1. Maria @ Nordic Papaya December 29, 2016 at 8:03 am #

    We were going to go skiing with thee kiddos but my sister-in-law offered to have them for the night with her kids, so we could go out. We have been married only a year and a half so everyone is trying to give us some “newlywed time” on our own. 🙂 So we will just go to dinner in town and just have a good time. 🙂 I hope you have a wonderful one.
    Maria @ Nordic Papaya recently posted…little luxuries // restMy Profile

    • Pat December 29, 2016 at 10:55 pm #

      Sounds like you have such a thoughtful family – so sweet of them to make that couple time possible for you <3! I'm sure you'll have a great time... And I'm sure we will, too 😉
      Thanks for stopping by - all the best in the coming year!
      Pat recently posted…Word of The Year for 2017My Profile

  2. Journa Ramirez December 29, 2016 at 3:17 am #

    Happy holidays! Thanks for hosting. -Journa from the team @ http://www.lollyjane.com
    Journa Ramirez recently posted…2017 circular wall decor diyMy Profile

  3. Mother of 3 December 28, 2016 at 8:03 pm #

    What a fun new year’s tradition! I don’t think we’ve ever made it up any later than our usual bedtimes; we used to get take out each New Year’s Eve but after waiting over an hour for our order one year and seeing how packed the restaurant was we decided it was time to find a new tradition. We started cooking a simple meal at home, playing games, and just enjoying some family time by the fire.
    Mother of 3 recently posted…Top 10 Posts of All TimeMy Profile

    • Pat December 29, 2016 at 10:53 pm #

      I’m with you on eating out on holidays – I try to steer clear of restaurants for Mother’s Day and Thanksgiving, too. Ugh… But time around the fire is ALways time well spent! Hope you enjoy your evening – and Happy New Year to you and yours!!
      Pat recently posted…Coffee and Conversation #126 – How are you spending New Year’s?My Profile

  4. Samantha December 28, 2016 at 5:51 pm #

    Thought I’d introduce myself- I’m Samantha, homeschooling mom to only 1 now, but have homeschooled 5 older children. Now have 4 grandsons with a granddaughter on the way! I’m also an OB RN and write a blog for our hospital system called Childbirth World.
    Thanks for this link party!

    • Pat December 28, 2016 at 6:38 pm #

      It’s great to meet you, Samantha – sounds like you have a wealth of experience under your belt! So happy to have you here…please feel free to comment and share whatever you think would encourage younger moms and/or newer homeschoolers!
      Thanks so much for stopping by; hope to see you soon 🙂
      All the best in 2017!

  5. Shelly December 28, 2016 at 2:31 pm #

    We’re just staying home for New Year’s Eve. I’ll probably be asleep before the ball drops, lol. Have a Happy and blessed New year!
    Shelly recently posted…Is Compulsory Schooling to Blame for the Breakdown of the Family?My Profile

    • Pat December 28, 2016 at 6:40 pm #

      Haha, Shelly! Well, I have to admit that I find it harder and harder to stay awake till midnight these days, too! “Luckily” we have lots of younger blood around to keep us on our toes. (Although I want to know where they go to when it’s time to get up and make breakfast for everyone the next day…just sayin’)
      Thanks for sharin’ 🙂 And Happy New Year!

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