Preparing for the New Year and 4 ways to holiday cheer

A little “Happy New Year” to you! I am already¬†preparing the house for NYE and am planning a nice meal, which always involves some Pinterest action to ensure the holiday season is, well, Pinterest-worthy. I’m going to share with you what I consider the four essentials to an internet ready holiday.

Simmer Pots

My first simmer pot literally sat on the stove for 2 weeks.


I didn’t know this even EXISTED until a few weeks ago, but mixing together ingredients of what you want your house to smell like and dumping it into a pot of boiling water actually works. I added vanilla, cinnamon sticks, cloves and star annis to a pot of boiling water and then I let it simmer. Don’t forget to periodically add water. I set the timer to remind me to add some every 30 minutes.

Setting the Table

table 2015

It doesn’t take long to transform the table by adding lights and colorful placemats.

A pretty table, period.

There’s something festive about seeing things you routinely grow tired of all decorated and pretty. I’m guessing this is true for most things. The same goes for the Christmas tree in the living room. The lights make it magical and make me forget how awful this time of year can be. (Yikes!)

living room 2015-1
Our living room for the holidays.

For the next 5 months of winter our living room won’t have this ethereal glow, so we are enjoying it while we can! I also had to put the tree on the table because of a certain curious somebunny that chews on EVER-Y-THING.

Furry Friends

frankie xmas-1
Frankie opening his gift on Christmas morning

This one is my absolute personal favorite, making sure the animals are included. They are family members too, aren’t they? Mine are the most important to me and they were definitely invited to celebrate Christmas morning with us. We had gifts for them and also they gave gifts to the kids!

Hors d’oeuvres

Growing up, my dad always served cold shrimp with cocktail sauce (still does!) on Christmas Eve and New Years Eve. We have enough cheese in our house to stuff a cow, along with dried sausage (won’t stuff a cow with that one, weird) and other small snacks to nibble on. We made our entire Christmas dinner on this, and it will mostly likely also be our New Year’s day dinner.


I’d love to interact more with anyone that reads this, so if you’re up for it, in the comments let me know if there are any traditions you follow and what you do to make the holidays special.

From my family to yours, Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!