Life and Laughs at Side Hill Farm

Sharing life, laughter, recipes and an occasional bottle of home brew down on the farm.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Thoughts on being who we are meant to be

 I believe we were born with all the specific stuff in us to make us the one of a kind person that is us. I'm not saying that all that happens around us in this world doesn't affect us or change us dramatically, but inside us, maybe really deep, is the us we were meant to be.

     I spent so much of my life striving to be what I thought others wanted me to be instead of enjoying being me. What a waste! I now can say that I like me. Most of the time. Not that I don't have things in me that need to be changed. That just goes with being in this world and living with others. But I never want to lose the me that I was made to be.

     What got me thinking about this is our house. I love our house. A 1920's bungalow style house.  Sometime in the 70's or 80's previous owners decided to change it. I understand. Times change. The original galley kitchen with formal dinning room didn't work for them. It was the time of eat in kitchens and sliding glass doors. They took out the wall between the kitchen and a bedroom and made a bigger kitchen with a glass door going into the back yard. Unfortunately they needed the bedroom, so they took out the fireplace and walled off part of the living room to make a new bedroom. They moved the living room into the formal dining room. This created a good sized very dark entry way. And a very small living room. The entry way has been one of those rooms that you wonder what to do with. The house is not very big, so just to use it to walk through didn't make much sense. So a computer room… clutter. I put our dining room table in it. That became a place to put the clutter. What to do? ?? Call the sister and invite her over for a wall tearing down party!

     I could not put up with another holiday in our small living room. 6 people in it at Thanksgiving was crowded. The mister and I had talked about tearing out the wall that was put in, but there were always other things to take our time. He tends to want to think things out and have the perfect time to do things like that. I did not see any "perfect time" in the future, so I did not mention my plan to him.

     I started cleaning things out on the sly. "Just got a cleaning bug, honey".  Friday before last as soon as he left for work I jumped out of bed and started striping off the wallpaper. Of course I stuck it on good and wasn't done when the sister showed up. She started taking the trim off and with the help of a nice sledge hammer, by 12:30 the horrible wall was down.
The Dreaded Wall
A step closer to Sunlight
Freedom is so close...
As it should be...
What a difference!!! The light that came into the room was amazing. No longer did we have a dark, useless entry way and a guest room (otherwise know as "the place where you put things waiting to find their real place" room). Now we have a great size living room that looks out over the garden, barn and fields.  No longer does it feel like a small cramped house. My dining table is now in the dining room where you can open the french doors and the two rooms become one gigantic room. Plenty of space for family to enjoy the holidays now!
     Now the house makes sense.  It's hard to imagine sitting here drinking my tea it being any other way. It is finally back to what it was meant to be. And call me silly, but I think my little house is smiling now. 
Ready for paint and redecorating...

     (Note: the mister did not throw a fit or leave me! He was so excited, he was calling all his friends and telling them about it!)

Questioning the "must do's" and "should dos"

 This is the season that I get so caught up in the whirl wind of being busy that I find myself flung into the new year wondering what happened to the Christmas I used to love.

     I heard something on the radio the other day that made me think. Some shrink (I know, usually I call them quacks and say they don't know what they're talking about) was saying that women tend to be so bogged down by the musts and shoulds that they lose the joy of the season. Boy did that hit home. So, this year I am questioning all my musts and shoulds. Not throwing them all out. Just questioning. Some musts, such as making lumpya for Christmas Eve, is a must that stays. I think the whole family would rebel if I didn't do that.  Paying bills this month is a must I cannot ignore. But must make 10s of dozens of cookies and candies is a must that has got to go. Cookie dough is a down fall of mine. Eating. Lots. So I may make some cookies and a couple of candies. If I have time and if I feel like it. Must have everything perfect for the family gathering has to go. I've never accomplished it anyway, so why stress out about it? Should make Christmas cards and send them. No, not this year. Too many things going on. Should make Christmas bread and deliver it on Christmas eve to friends. Don't think its going to happen, so not even going to plan it.

     What I am going to do is give myself 12 days of Christmas. No, I'm not going all selfish this year, just giving to myself this year, because, darn it, I'm worth it!

 My first gift was having family over for a 6 course sit down dinner on Sat. I love cooking and planning and had a great time putting it together. So many good things to eat I've wanted to try. I had a blast!

The Soiree Attendees
 My second gift was sitting down today and watching a Christmas chick flick and knitting. Who knows what else I will do? Maybe a good Christmas fiction and a nice cup of earl grey. Maybe drinking a cup of hot buttered rum on the front porch looking at the stars.  These things are for sure on my must list this year. I will keep you posted as the holidays progress.
     Here's hoping  you take time for you this season.

Link to dessert recipes I used for the party. Lots of great recipes here
go to recipes for creame brule (I didn't use orange peel...sounds good though.)



  1. Ah, I bet the 70s and 80s are to blame for a lot of depressed houses! Good for you for taking care of yourself!

  2. ah, it all makes sense now! i was looking at that picture of everyone a few days ago, thinking where in the house was that taken?! wish we could have made it, sounds like a good time was had by all. :) glad you're making christmas time more enjoyable/less stressful for yourself this year!!