Happy New Year! I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas, and Christmas break with your friends and family. We have loved every minute of this past week and I have taken advantage of no blogging and just hanging out with the fam. Our break has been nothing but slow, relaxing days with lots of crazy kiddos running around. Several members of our family got the flu over the break (ugh!)  so it made for a good excuse to hunker down inside, play games, bake too many treats and watch plenty of Christmas movies. Just my kind of break!


So I can remember for next year, we started two new traditions we can’t wait to continue next year. The first is a cousin talent show. Most of my kids, as well as our nieces and nephews take piano lessons from my beautiful mom. She is extremely patient with all these crazy monkeys, but has done a great job teaching them this new talent. We had a fun night where we all brought appetizers and enjoyed each child sharing a talent of their choice. It was a fun night for the kids to showcase things they had been working on all year.

The second tradition we’re going to continue was shared with us by my sister. Not sure where this tradition originated, but it was super fun. On a night before Christmas (we’re thinking it would be great on Christmas Adam) we will have a ‘Yule Log’ night. This is where the parents choose a small gift that represents that child for the year, or some accomplishment they have achieved. For example, my son Isaac got a cat. He named it Skittles and so he got a cat ornament with a bag of Skittles. The gifts don’t need to be fancy or expensive, but something sentimental the children will enjoy.

Each present is then wrapped individually (with their names written on the top) and then wrapped one by one, on top of each other–with a layer of wrapping paper in between each gift. The gift ends up being this big, funny shaped gift with lots of presents on the inside of it.

You then take turns opening a layer of the Yule Log and talking about the gift and what it represents. Before the child opens their ‘layer’ though we had them share a favorite Christmas memory that helped them closer to Jesus Christ. It was neat to hear their responses and the memories they have of past Christmases. It was a fun night where we could all reminisce and give the kids some time to talk about their accomplishments and some specific things we love about them. It was such a hit, we will for sure be doing this again next year. It was a spiritual (and fun) highlight of our Christmas.

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas too. I sure love and appreciate you taking time to stop by our blog each week. I love sharing our family with you and are grateful you stop by.

Get ready for a new year here at Deals to Meals! I still can’t believe a new year is here. We are going to have some amazing new updates and changes in 2017. We are still working on transferring over thousands of recipes to our new blog and then it will be ready to reveal (I can hardly wait!). I just need a month long vacation to enter all of them–ah!


In the meantime, make sure and check back often for more great recipes, grocery shopping tips, food storage ideas and family fun. I’m here to blog for you, so if you have ideas or things you would like to see me blog about, I’d love to hear from you. Your comments are my fave!! Have a great week 🙂