My Cozy Corner

Helen’s Favorite Finds 2021

Oprah’s Favorite Things list came out this week. I love her taste, but I found most things on the list to be exorbitantly expensive for the average person. It did, however, prompt me to go ahead and publish my list for 2021, even though it’s a bit earlier than I usually put it out. My list is not in order of preference: It just is!

  1. FOOD Sprouts own brand of granola. It is gluten-free, and comes in yummy flavors. So far, my two favorites are cherry chocolate and lemon blueberry. They make a great change from everyday granola. Another love I found this year, are Kind bars. I always get the gluten-free ones, and they come in amazing flavors. The mini bars are only 100 calories each.
  2. BOOKS You have patiently put up with me going on and on about the Mifford series, by Jan Karon, and Growing Slow, by Jennifer Dukes Lee. There’s no doubt that both have had an impact on my life, but there are a couple more books from 2021 that I would highly recommend: Dirt by Mary Morantz, which is a coming of age memoir, and I’ve Been Thinking, by Maria Shriver. A personal journey thought, meditation and prayer.
  3. TELEVISION PBS currently has four series that we are following. That’s a lot for us. We usually manage one or two series at a time. Thank heavens for the DVR, and we will have plenty to watch all winter. We are enjoying 3 British and 1 Australian series: Father Brown, Death in Paradise, The Indian Doctor, and Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries. I’m sure you’ll love them.
  4. SELF-CARE Besides slowing down this year, I’ve learned to take care of myself. I give myself treats from time to time. My current favorite is mocha lattes. I get them iced in the summer, and hot in the winter. It is my reward for doing tasks that I don’t particularly like—grocery shopping, for instance.
  5. PERSONAL CARE We all know that as we age, makeup is a challenge. Foundation tends to make all those wrinkles look like craters, and we look older than ever. Tinted moisturizer is the answer. It adds a little color when you need it, and is very light, so it doesn’t cake into every nook and cranny on your face.

My (our) best decision this year was our staycation in August We have decided to make it a yearly event, whether or not we are traveling at other times of the year. It seems like retired life would be a never ending staycation, but there are tasks to be taken care of. Taking a week for nothing but rest and relaxation was just what we needed.

The week has not been as busy as the previous one, thank heavens! There were two big things on the agenda, pruning the roses and submitting a magazine article. Both were accomplished!

The most fun thing that happened this week was the annual pre-Christmas, Christmas party with my lunch group. It’s always in November, because December can be so busy. You may recall that I talked about having our December 2020 party in August of 2021 due to COVID. This is always the highlight of our year. We exchange small gifts, but the real fun is in the fellowship. Much talk and laughter.

The first of the winter holidays is quickly approaching and our plans are well under way. The next generation will be sharing cooking duties, but we will host it. The guest list seems to be growing hmmmm. Here is another one of our semi-homemade tasty dishes.

Stuffing to Die For

1 pkg of stuffing

1 stick of butter

1 Cup of wine (to substitute for one of the cups of liquid in the stuffing mix)

Chopped apples, mushrooms, pecans and onion.

Melt the butter in a saucepan and saute the vegetables until tender. Add the stuffing and the liquid. Stir together thoroughly. We will never eat plain old stuffing again. Think of the variations you could do.

,Until next time, enjoy the season. Savor each moment, and don’t let it overwhelm you.


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