Holidays with the Cozy Cottage Clan!

Whew! Holy moly! Is anyone else still exhausted from Christmas and New Year celebrations?

I’m just getting life back to normal, though the poor house is still a wreck and I haven’t even started to take down our decorations. We had 3 Christmases this year, one which was mixed in on New Year’s Eve. So let’s start at the beginning, shall we?

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Christmas morning, I woke up at 6 AM. I was way too excited to sleep, and it had nothing to do with the presents for me under the tree. I knocked it out of the park this year with presents for my mother-in-law and Mr. Cozy Cottage, so I was extremely impatient to get everyone up! But in the hour that I got the chickens fed, coffee made, and breakfast started, it was beautifully peaceful.

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We also started a new tradition: Christmas crackers! They’re British in origin, and so much fun!

Once everyone was awake with coffee and hot tea in their systems, we opened stockings. Scooby has been the biggest kid this Christmas, snooping under the tree knowing he had presents underneath, so he and Nubi couldn’t wait to see what Santa brought for them!

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Presents were a big deal this year. We got my mother-in-law a working tablet that she wouldn’t feel the need to invent “colorful” words just to operate it. It was the year of kitchen gear and chickens for me, as I got a brand new Crock Pot and cookie sheets. And then it was time for hubby’s gifts. For the very last one, he was given a clue where he had to go on a scavenger hunt to find the other 3 and, ultimately, his gift.

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Now, this year I went above and beyond. It’s been a rough year for us, him especially, and I felt like he really deserved something special. I’d been planning and saving for months. I schemed with my parents and his other and brother, which was the only way I was able to afford it. So when he finally found the 4th clue and rolled up the door to his shop, boy was he surprised! He’d had no idea!

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Within hours, he not only had the motorcycle lift put together, but had the shovelhead on it.

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The day after Christmas, I drove down to pick up my 18-year-old stepson and his girlfriend for their week-long visit. After returning home, we just chilled. We were all exhausted and sick of being on the road. But the next day, Mr. Cozy Cottage was off, so we had Christmas #2. Our son will be graduating in May and going into the Navy, so he adored the t-shirt his grandmother gave him. He wouldn’t even let me wash it before he started wearing it!

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He doesn’t look excited in this picture, but I promise he was!

I cooked a ham dinner that night with my secret glaze, homemade gluten-free macaroni and cheese, and green bean casserole.

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He’s a ham fiend!

The following he day, he got his very first tattoo. It was very special, to honor his grandfather on his mother’s side, and extra special since his father was the artist!

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Tattoo by KC Jones, Beyond Taboo Tattoo, Macon, GA

On New Year’s Eve, we loaded up the kids and all of our things and all of the gifts, and made our way to South Georgia for Christmas with my side of the family. In lieu of another Christmas dinner, my mother made New Year’s dinner a day early with two wild hog hams, black eyed peas, and collard greens. We opened gifts, and my mother was thrilled to get her own pair of Sloggers chicken boots.

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I, on the other hand, am the proud owner of a brand new canner!!! I honestly can’t wait to use it with the harvest from the spring garden!

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That evening, we burned the entire burn pit. This thing had been sitting since summer since we were on burn ban for months. The flames shot up so high, and we couldn’t get within 10-feet of it for quite a while! It did die down, and we roasted some marshmallows and tried to ignore the drizzle.

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It was an exhausting holiday, but well worth it to spend time with our wonderful family and friends! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season, and from our cozy cottage to yours, Happy New Year!

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