1.01.2017

january 2017





Happy new year to you all.  The weather here has been cold and rainy so we've been doing what we can to warm this place up. Every year I think I may sell these Pottery Barn drapes I bought several years ago but every winter I'm so thankful that I didn't. They are heavily lined and help keep us toasty.




I didn't decorate much for Christmas but I still can't bring myself to take away the buckets of greenery in the kitchen.





This is a random seldom seen corner of the kitchen.  That doorway leads to the master bedroom (lol) and bath (lolouder) that was added in 1930.




With all the rain we've gotten, the rose garden has been blooming. Fresh roses in the bedroom in January!

What do you have planned for the new year?  This is my hands down favorite time of year because it just screams possibilities.


Things I'd love to get done this year would include my never ending quest to declutter and simplify my life. Paring down my wardrobe and household goods would be wonderful.  With Alex now operating a v cool vintage store here in town does not help that quest tho.

Also, I've seriously toyed with the idea of a no spend year but don't know if I have that discipline in me any longer.  I know I can do a no spend January. Anyone else in?  Maybe we can go month to month and see where that takes us.  What do you think?  I can post about my weaknesses and you can too in the comments.

Also, also what about our diets???  I totally ate tons of sugar this holiday season.  The temptations were crazy.  I'm so ready to treat my body like the temple it is and clean up this mess.

What's on your list?

Also, also, also...New Year post from last year with a delish soup recipe

xo




89 comments:

  1. Mine are:
    1. Make my Art a top priority instead everything else first.
    2. Diet/Health = the Forks over Knives way.
    3. Enjoy the NOW. Treasure each day
    4. Stop worrying about EVERYTHING.

    I'm gonna do it!
    This is the YEAR!
    Good Luck to you too!
    xoxoxo

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    1. i love "treasure everything" good or bad it's part of our life. i believe that is the key to true happiness. good luck to you cindi! xo

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  2. Cindi, everything you just said but replace ART with WRITING.Let's Go!!!!!

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    1. sue your writing is like art! best wishes this new year. xo

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  3. My immediate list is to get through 5 months of rough chemotherapy, begun last week, after which will come a double mastectomy. The one day at a time strategy. When I put Christmas away this year, I really winnowed and sifted the collection. More and more things are going to my daughters and three young granddaughters. I decorated very simply this year and loved it. Best wishes to all in 2017! Faith in Jesus, family and health are tops for me.

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    1. Sending good thoughts your way!

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    2. isabella my heart, love and prayers are with you. faith will get us thru anything! please keep us all posted on your progress. xo

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    3. Isabella W sending you strength and prayers, you're going on my daily prayer list these next months, one day at a time combined with faith is a very good strategy xo

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    4. Isabella, praying for your body to deal with the chemo and have great results from it too. Keep the faith!

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    5. Although I don't know any of you personally, I'd like to share that I have a good friend who had to have rough chemotherapy for stage 4 endometrial cancer, and she decided to get acupuncture to combat the side effects...and it worked beautifully. She felt stronger and more able to do battle. God bless you, Isabella.

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    6. Isabella, sending healing thoughts your way...I am glad you have your faith and family to get you through this. It's so important.

      Linda

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    7. Isabella,
      May complete healing be yours. In Jesus Name!
      Check out the blog: www.thetruthaboutcancer.com

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    8. Be positive dear heart, ride the wave of love, everything is possible.
      Bernadette

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  4. Yea! I'm in for a no spend January. I'm also trying to be mindful about how much I move, what I eat, and how connected we all are.

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    1. yay, i have one compadre for no spend january! i def want to do a buy nothing new for the whole year. i should have added that to the post. we ARE all connected megs. xo

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    2. Buy nothing new or new to you? Because if it's a no buy on new goods I can do that! Vintage however is, as you know, my kryptonite. ;)

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    3. right eleanor. for january i'm saying no buying anything beyond groceries or absolute essentials. 2nd hand is my kryptonite tooooooooo!

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  5. You have excellent decorating tastes -- clean, classic, warm and comfortable! The Pottery Barn drapes are lovely too.

    I have never had to start the New Year by dieting, except for this year. I have eaten balanced meals my entire life, so it's just getting back on tract. Tomorrow I plan to eliminate the cookies and sugar of the holiday season and concentrate on eating low calorie, high protein meals until I can slide back into my jeans with ease. Boring but needed.

    I also want to go through a closet and doninate things to charity that never get used. I'm always decluttering.

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    1. i was lucky for lots of years too re my weight but now i have to be mindful but i want to clean up my diet for my overall health. thank you so much for your compliments! xo

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  6. Like you, J, I live in the San Diego area-and roses in January are part of the reason my hubby and I moved here a few years ago :)
    My resolutions are more of an ongoing thing-as I need something to change in my life, I try and embrace it ASAP. I practice the tenets of Feng Shui,so I don't have much of a clutter issue, and meditation keeps my work/job/life balance in check.
    LOL though at the sugar train that chugged through all our celebrations this year-time to derail that for sure!
    My word of the year is "Abundance" and I hope to manifest that not just for myself, but for as many people as I can. Happy New Year!

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    1. omgosh is was a sugar train here too! i love the word abundance - so beautiful! xo

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  7. Definitely a no spend month. Time with family and friends is always a priority. And then there's my travel aspirations!

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  8. I'm with y'all on the no spend January and maybe February, possibly March, etc. My other goals include, more decluttering, enjoying more vegetarian style meals, and less time in the company of a device. Happy New Year Janet!

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    1. all wonderful goals marguerite! less computer time here too! xo

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  9. Those drapes are lovely...oh and what a wonderful chalkboard!
    January will be a frugal but not a no spend month, my lingerie needs to be replaced...
    every year at this time I refresh my supply.
    Cleaning out closets, drawers and donating stuff is very much on my do list...that and shedding a few pounds and getting more exercise.
    Look forward to your posts Janet and I would love to see more of your roses...we have snow on the ground today!
    Best wishes for 2017!
    XO

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    1. thanks leslie. i've been decluttering and organizing like a mad woman the last few days and i love it! xo

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  10. My end-of-year always seems to be filled with excess, so the new year is always such a relief to me! Yes to no spending, yes to eating a whole foods/plant based diet instead of a lot of vegan junk and processed foods, yes to focusing on the small joys in my everyday life, yes to slowing down, and yes to continuing to work on getting rid of the excess.

    As always, photos of your home are lovely, calming and inspiring. I remember how much you loved those drapes when you got them and I think they look perfect in your home.

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    1. thank you melodee. this time of year is really excessive for us b/c of our birthdays and anniversary is squeezed so close to christmas. i wish i had a june birthday! thank you for your compliments too! xo

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  11. I'm with you for a no spend January! I definitely want to be more mindful with the treasure we have. My goals are to meditate and learn to control my thoughts as much as humanly possible. I know that our minds are our most powerful tool in our arsenal. I've never been one to put myself first, but now that I'm an empty nester and 53 I feel it's finally my turn. I feel emotional even putting those words out in the universe! Btw- your home speaks volumes about you! Simple, elegant, timeless, treasured!

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    1. thank you ll. putting ourselves first is so crucial if we are empty nesters. for me the "pull" to "help" my children is at times overwhelming. time to focus on me/us now! xo

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  12. I forgot to mention Classic and inspirational!

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  13. I'm in for a no spend January, also Feb., & March.

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  14. I also love this time of year. Fresh start and we're really into winter here, trudging through the snow with my dog is my favourite.
    My NY resolution is to go to more movies at our local cinema and also to buy my books at my local bookshop not amazon. Also to eat more food, I was pretty happy to gain 5lbs earlier this year because I looked less like the crypt keeper but I've had some bothersome chest colds the last couple of months and I always lose weight when I get sick, and then it adds to my crap feeling. Staying strong is key for whatever life throws at us.
    I've cut down massively on time spent online this year and I feel so good for it, I keep my phone off for days at a time (unless my rascal daughter needs keeping track of) and my laptop gets use once or twice a day, often just for my admin job. So I plan to continue on that path, keeping my blog up as a domestic diary is my current plan, blog life has been mostly positive for me these last years. Your blog has always been a bright light on the internet Janet, so happy to know you!
    Wishing you a really wonderful 2017 with all of the good things this beautiful life has to offer when we stop to smell the roses :) and I always think of your cottage filled with roses (even in January, I love it!) xx

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    1. thank you so much dani for your lovely words. i've noticed that you have cut back on social media and i totally get it. i have too. i do plan to keep my blog going bc it is an excellent journal esp for the garden and home. it's also such a great place to have met wonderful wonderful people such as yourself. xo

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  15. I envy your enthusiasm for this time of year. for me, yes to the diet and no the spending freeze. I'm going to spend more time at the beach and try to wear more pastels. Big goals as you can see. Haha enjoy the air of despair and rotting Christmas trees in your favorite time of year! :)

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    1. adore your goals SAJ, they suit you perfectly. xo

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  16. I started on NYEve to clean, straighten, fold and stack my way into the New Year. No Spend is just things other than groceries? I'm in. I find I already own everything I think I need. Now to find a good way to get rid of treasures I no longer want. EBay?

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    1. me too joanne. yes, it's a freeze on everything but food and absolute essentials! ebay has been wonderful for me in the past so i may list a few things myself. good luck! xo

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  17. Happy New Year, Janet. The Christmas season for me was a study in excess, quite the opposite of what I had planned. So I am in for no spending (except the lovely gift cards I received), no to an actual diet, and yes to continued simplicity which I crave. And your house pictures are my inspiration. As to the diet, this is my year to learn to eat less and move more. And eat clean. So cheers to 2017!

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    1. i always think i'll keep christmas shopping under control and then i seem to lose it too kristien. next year i vow to only shop for the grandkids! lol wish me luck. xo

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  18. I've started decluttering too! Did my son's bedroom- clothes, shoes, books, toys and other stuff he'd out grown. It felt fantastic and I have 3 huge bags to take to the Salvos. I also want to get a grip of my food intake and walk more- nothing is more precious than good health. I like the possibilities of January too. I am in hard core saving mode! xxxx

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    1. good! we are simpatico! i've filled 2 huge bags too and i have no idea where they came from???!!! here's to a happy, ordered and peaceful new year! xo

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  19. I am "so with you" on a no spending goal. There is nothing I need (only wants); so I am pressing forward!

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    1. yes, me too B! all my needs and most wants are filled. i'm/we're so blessed! xo

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  20. Janet, I had to smile about you wanting to declutter and simplify. In my eyes, you are the queen of those subjects. I can't imagine what you could have to declutter. I am so far behind you I don't think I could ever catch up! I like the no spend month idea as I have toyed with same. Does it count if I already purchased new fabric and went out to lunch today? I think I've failed already! In my defense, it was a New Year's Day sale at the fabric shop and I picked things out and had them cut "last year" to purchase today. I definitely need to clean up my eating and do better with exercise. I turn 60 in April and need to shape up as I've been telling myself for some time in preparation for that milestone.

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    1. that does not count jeannine! it was a planned and mindful purchase! i just turned 59 so 60 is next for me. it really changes how you look at your life right?! xo

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  21. I am in with a "no spending" January! Actually think I might be able to go the entire year- how is that for being optimistic?! Your blog is always a breath of fresh air- love the clean, simple, elegant vibe. I made your butternut squash soup many times throughout the last year-it is so delicious and always a favorite. Happy New Year- wishing you much peace, love, and joy in 2017!

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    1. thank you dana! i have so much stuff i know i could go a year or more without shopping for anything!!!! xo

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  22. I can go with the no spend month and possibly more. I need nothing! My daughter is going through a divorce and has 2 small girls. They stay with us on weekends now and use our spare upstairs bedroom and my closet in there. I also have a closet in our master bedroom and a rack in my husbands closet. I sound like a real shopaholic and I'm not at all. Lots of the clothes are old and I do wear them. I have a closet for summer clothes, winter clothes and church clothes. When my daughter mentioned all these closets it made me aware of how much I need to declutter and give away. I have tried before with not much success. I would love to narrow my clothes down to one closet.How do you accommodate all your seasonal clothes in a tiny space? We do have spring, summer, fall and winter here in Georgia. This will be my goal for 2017! Happy New Year! I enjoy your blog so , so much.

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    1. it isn't easy getting all my clothes into one closet. i do have a 4 drawer chest and a rather large armoire too. i do wear all my clothes too so it is hard to part with any of them! i just do not need to add anything! it's like a jenga puzzle in that closet! xo

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  23. Your home is so lovely - you don't need to change a thing !
    I'm with you on your very sensible goals in the new year.... I aspire to simplify and declutter and I like the idea of going month to month of a 'no spend' month...would love to hear any tips to help accomplish this from your savvy readers ! Enjoy your blog so much...

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    1. thank you patricia. sounds like a lot of us have everything we need! i look forward to everyone's comments too. they are the best part of my blog! xo

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  24. Janet,
    I'm in on the no spend January. I'm also trying to clean up my diet as I've been eating way too much sugar. My weakness is always books but I'm up for the challenge. It will be good to have you leading the way.

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    1. we need to stick together thru this tina. lol cutting out the sugar is #1 priority for me! xo

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  25. I really fell off the wagon and pretty much got run over when it comes to eating well. I'm ready to clean up my act so I'll be joining you on that front. And - I'll also join you in a no spend January because why not? Woohoo! #goals

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  26. Everyone interested in the no-spend month should check out the Frugalwoods blog - they have an Uber Frugal Month challenge! It's a great blog, similar to Mr. Money Mustache, just less cursing :)

    Janet, I'd be interested in hearing if paying off the mortgage in the near future is still a goal. I know that was something you were working on a few years ago when you were posting your monthly grocery receipts (which I loved!). No judgment, just wondering!

    Happy New Year!!!

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    1. oh i have read their blog from time to time. i will go check it out now. we are still at the mortgage. i don't know if it will be soon but it will be before the full mortgage plays out. i quit posting the grocery receipts bc the comments were getting ugly! i still shop at the .99 and find it absolutely fascinating at the deals there. off too the frugalwoods...xo

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  27. I'm contemplating being able to ride the C&O trail with my husband on our tandem.

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    1. oh jess what an accomplishment that would be! good luck lady! xo

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  28. Hi Janet,
    I don't feel the possibilities high until spring, so am in doldrums till then! But the following might spice things up -
    Join you on the no spend, lose winter weight by moving more, dump 200 house mag from 15 year build-up, inventory/clear out of food cupboards, and stop finding things to worry about that haven't happened.
    That should get me through these bleak months!
    Happy New Year to you and yours X.

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    1. that all sounds wonderful mary. i lost my lifetime magazine collection in a flood of the basement several years ago and still think about some of those issues! but it's always awesome to own about 20 now - instead of 200! good luck thru these bleak months! xo

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  29. No spend year? We are getting ready to put our house on the market, so naturally will need to spend on a few repairs here and there. BUT, I started my "No Spend" before Christmas. Don't tell my family but I spent almost nothing for presents and decorations this year. Mostly it involved using what I already had and a few choice purchases from "Junque" and vintage store. One granddaughter received some silverplate dishes and cups plus Sterling Silver spoons. We thought she'd use them for "dress-up" but her mother told me she's using them for eating everyday. My littlest granddaughter got a beautiful doll that literally brought her tears of joy. I picked it up on sale at Habitat for Humanity ReStore for $4. Turned out to be collectible porcelain.

    All my interior greens for wreaths and floral arrangements came from our garden or were free Christmas tree cuttings from Home Depot. I had saved Paperwhite bulbs from last year and had a lovely display of blossoms near the front door and several other locations. My set of 10 red, cut glass votive glasses always looks classy and expensive. (Purchased from Target about 10 years ago for only $8.) Votive candles with Bayberry scent cubes added (Yaley Candle Company via Michael's) give a cozy, old fashioned winter note amongst the evergreen scents. Our home is a very traditional Country French style so a few choice vignettes placed here and there have more impact than excessive Christmas decoration. Thank goodness I worked my way through college as a floral designer.

    I did a huge amount of donating in 2015 and 2016 so in 2017 the excess will be sent to consignment shops or Craigslist. Hope I don't see anything at the consignment shops that I CAN'T live without. Vintage and consignment shops are MY weakness, too! Fortunately or unfortunately, I have about 5 really great ones that I frequent.

    Wishing everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year.

    Smiles from Charlotte

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    1. i absolutely love the sound of your home. i swear next year i'm only buying for the grands! my kids are adults and have everything and are picky on top of that. christmas is for the little ones! xoxo

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    2. Janet, You and I are both friends of Andrea, The French Basketeer. When she was actively writing her blog, I learned a LOT from her about decorating. One of these days we should car-pool (at least part way) to Andrea's French Food Camp!

      We only give presents to grand kids who are unmarried and under 21. Once they are adults, no more presents. As you said, they already have everything and are picky. Besides, Christmas is not really about presents. It is, for us, about the Birth of Christ. Once you are old enough to understand, THAT should be the focus.

      This year at our Family Christmas Party, my sister who is VERY strapped for cash, wanted some financial help to buy presents for all the children. I suggested, instead, that she buy a balloon for each child at Dollar Tree ($1 each). She did. Guess what the kids loved the most..the balloons!

      BTW.. I try to stay away from Redlands because you have several GREAT Vintage shops there! Over the years I have dropped a lot of cash in Redlands!

      Smiles from Charlotte

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  30. All of the rain has been wonderful...I hope it continues - we can use all of the rain we can get here in Southern California.

    My roses are blooming too but unfortunately it is also the time to prune them. I hate to do it but it has to be done. I will try to dry as many of the blooms as I can.

    Garden clean up and finishing the redecorating of my living room are the first items on my agenda for the new year. Then I hope to get back to painting.

    Happy New Year!

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    1. the rain has been heaven sent! the garden is going to be so good this spring! the beds have been soaked like they haven't been in years! good luck with your living room redecorating - sounds fun! xo

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  31. I love this post. I'm in for trying a no spend January. Does this mean spending on personal stuff or not spending any money except for groceries, etc? :-)
    xo,
    Karen

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    1. yes, just groceries or things like shampoo etc. i'm so excited that lots of you want to join in. i hope to go way past one month! xo

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  32. Hi Janet.. wonderful post (as usual!). My weaknesses are eating out and buying new sweaters for the cold season here in the Northeast! I buy sweaters then the following year give some away! Must STOP! As for eating out, I actually enjoy my own food better! It would save a ton of $$. Decluttering is a constant challenge and Ive gotten better at it and even my pack-rat husband has been gradually joining in!!! Your squash soup recipe is delish and I have done a version that people adore. It is the same recipe except I add a tablespoon of curry powder and one can of coconut milk then adjust the salt, etc. It is garnished with roasted sunflower kernels. This soup is DEMANDED at pot lucks. My goals for 2017 are also to declutter more, have more fun and joy, and express myself through writing a book! Have a lovely year, Janet.

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    1. janice you sound just like me. i'm so disappointed with eating out. even the best restaurants here disappoint me. lol, i'm a tough cookie tho. your soup sounds wonderful and i've been adding pureed jalepeno to mine lately and it's good too!xo

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  33. Happy New Year Janet! I love the no spend month idea...by the time Christmas is over I'm ready. That said, we had a last minute purchase last week...someone in our neighborhood had a brand new Sole treadmill for sale. Husband bought it for his wife in 2015 and she never used it. They were downsizing and had to get rid of it. It was too good a deal to pass up! Major score. :)

    Didn't you have a birthday a few days ago?? Happy Belated Birthday!!!

    Linda
    xo

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    1. oh wow what a great score linda! it will be perfect for your foot injury. i did have a bday and thank you! xo

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  34. Count me in on the no spending and on the healthy eating,too.it makes it much easier, and more fun, if I know I'm not in it alone. But first, I must ask, what type of perfume is that in the bottle on your dresser?

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    1. hi michelle. the perfume is jo malone orange blossom. it was a christmas gift and prob the first perfume i've worn in ages. the scent is amazing. xo

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  35. LEAVE THE CURTAINS Or SELL TO ME!!!!!!!!!
    LEAVE THE GREENERY AS WELL...............
    LA CONTESSA HAS S P O K E N!!
    XX

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  36. I'm in for the no spend January! and hopefully longer! I've been finding great things in my closet I haven't even worn, all bought over the past few years.'and I am sorting to sell and donate. Great month for a no-spend....or a great year.

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    1. don't you just love that when you find something you re-love in your own closet! i have so much i need to go thru and donate, sell or give away! xo

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  37. Please show us some decluttering etc blogs, and maybe food blogs I love those!

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    1. hi tracy. that's a great idea. i put together a post on blogs that i'm really loving right now!

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  38. Janet, reading your blog and looking at your photos is a detox in itself! 2016 was less than stellar so I am on with all the positives for 2017. Happy New Year to you and your family

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    1. thank you so much amanda. what a lovely compliment. happy new year to you also! xo

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  39. Janet, Happy New year! Do you still walk around the neighbourhood every day? I really want more structure and routine in 2017 and less "What do I feel like doing?"

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