Saturday, December 21, 2019

A Very Merry Mountain Breaths

The phrase "true meaning of Christmas" was originally coined in an 1889 issue of The American magazine. It read, "to give up one's very self - to think only of others - how to bring the greatest happiness to others - that is the true meaning of Christmas." One hundred and thirty years later, the meaning still rings true. December was spent with famiy enjoying the outdoors and taking moon shots, making bird seed ornaments and building wooden cars with grandson Xavier, hanging out with grandson Quinn in Albany, making kissing balls and going on a llama trek with friends, a quick getaway to Lake Placid with Joe, and of course decorating our home for Christmas. We will be hosting 20+ and love every minute of it. 

The 25 year old Christmas cactus that I inherited from a friend that wanted it to have a good home :-)

My sister Diane applied for a retirement incentive and got it!!  There were hundreds of employees that qualified, and she submitted her paperwork in November NEVER thinking she would get it. But others weren't quite ready to retire, so they kept going down the list. SHE IS RETIRED as of 12/20/19!!!  She is 57, and working outdoors in the winter was getting to be a little too much. A wonderful Christmas gift.

Do you do Advent calendars? I've been having fun with my Beekman Advent calendar that I was lucky enough to purchase on the first day it was offered as it sold out immediately. I have been enjoying a variety of items including cuticle cream, lotions, soaps, sprays, and my favorite lip balms. I've also shared some with friends that have taken a trip with me to the Beekman store in Sharon Springs for the first time this year. 

I made tourtière for the first time after many years of hearing about it on blogs. I followed a recipe that was shared with me and used Pillsbury crusts, cooked 3 sliced and chopped onions until tender, added 2 lbs ground hamburger and 2 lbs ground pork. Added 4 teapoons Bells seasoning and pepper to taste. Cooled mixture and put in pie crusts. Baked at 350 for about 30 minutes. I made ahead and froze them for Christmas. Joe and I sampled one, I cut a small piece and served with cooked carrots, potatoes and brussels sprouts. We really liked it. 
This photo was taken on Thanksgiving, and on Christmas we will take another with almost the entire family.

 I gave myself a present this year by making the menu and table setting very easy, We used beautiful plaid paper plates. 
Some of the thoughtful Christmas gifts I already peeked at :-)

Wishing you and your family a Merry Christmas, happy holidays and a healthy and joyful 2020!

Debbie@Mountain Breaths
Debbie@Mountain Breaths

Hello, I'm Debbie.I enjoy hiking, kayaking, cross country skiing and snowshoeing in the Adirondack Mountains (thus Mountain Breaths). I live in Upstate NY with my supportive husband and have three precious sons..


  1. What a great December recap - you have certainly been a busy bee! Wishing you, Joe and family and magical Christmas!!

  2. So much to be so grateful for♥
    Great pics..cake..tourtière!! Wow Debbie..and you work:)!
    Meilleurs Voeux de la saison:)♥

  3. Your tourtiere turned out so beautiful, as did your gingerbread cake!! Congratulations to Diane!! Enjoy your Christmas with Joe and your wonderful family! ❤️🎄❤️

  4. Debbie, your snowy mountain photos make me wish for a white Christmas, but that is rare here. It also causes havic because Texans aren't used to snow. Everything shuts down! It's also a mess to tidy up after because of the garden mess. I guess, I'll just be satisfied with your winter wonderland.
    I'm happy you finished early and are kicking back to enjoy family and friends. That's how it should be! Our Christmas is always a quiet one, but our home is decorated for us to enjoy. We appreciate sitting by the fire, the tree lights twinkling in the background. Merry, Merry!

  5. Merry Christmas Debbie! Your home looks so holiday pretty all decked out in MKC! It sounds like you've had a busy December and much fun coming your way this Christmas week! I know you will enjoy your many blessings!

  6. Such a sweet post Debbie. Love the photos. Your home looks so festive and pretty. Winter wonderland looks so good with you too. Merry Christmas. Cheers to a bright new year. xo

  7. Nice photographs. I like your advent calendar. Glad your recipe for tourtiere worked out so well. Have a happy new year.


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