Winter 2018 Bucket List

Thanksgiving has come and gone and now it is Christmas Vibes time! And every year I try to compile a bucket list. I notice they are probably super similar every year. But hey, these are the most festive things, and they all just put me in the Christmas spirit. Whether or not I get to all of them, is another story. But a girl can try!

I know technically we are still in Fall, but it definitely feels like Winter out- we got snow BEFORE Thanksgiving, so it’s hard to keep the Fall vibes alive. I think I did pretty good with my Fall Bucket List, so it’s time to move on…

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My Winter 2018 Bucket List 

Buy a new tree (we chucked ours last year, it was shedding everywhere, and it was fake!)

Decorate

Buy this year’s ornament

Christmas shopping (I’ve actually started already, which is a miracle for this sometimes last minute girl!)

Fun Christmas outfits (I’m in the market for some new graphic tees, ugly sweaters, pjs. I actually just ought a tee with a snowmen on it, that says- “Oh SNOW You Didn’t!” hahaha)

Christmas movies and cocoa in a Christmas mug (my aunt just bought me the CUTEST one! I can’t wait to use it. I have been watching Lifetime on a loop with their cute Christmas movies! And Elf was on last night, so got that in already!)

Buy a Poinsettia

See the Christmas lights

Christmas vibes in the city

Find and print recipes (In my Thanksgiving research I came across a White Chocolate Cranberry Cookie recipe, and I saved it. So that’s what I think I’ll make! It just seemed more Christmasy than Thanksgivingy.)

Church tree lighting

Best Friend Sleepover (my best friend and I have done this for as long as I can remember and even though she’s married now, we still make time for our best friend traditions!)

Visit my junior high school friends (We’re all adults now with busy lives and it gets hard to see each other but we’ve been trying to make it more of yearly thing! Thanks to social media I feel like we keep up pretty well, but nothing is better than seeing each other in real time. It’s like no time has past at all!)

Dinner Exchange with my other bestie (my other best friend and I usually get together to exchange over a nice dinner. It’s a good time! And there’s usually wine and we’re foodies so there’s that, lol.)

Watch the Rockefeller Tree Lighting on tv- I always miss it!

Send out Santa Mail for my favorite kiddies! (this is a tradition I started with my god daughter when she was born and now I do it for her little brother and for my new little niece!) 

 

What’s on your Bucket List this coming winter season?

Did I miss anything?

*I do not take credit for the image used.*

-<3-

 

 

 

BLOGMAS RECAP!

Before we roll into the new year I just wanted to do a little reflection/recap on #BLOGMAS.

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I actually did it!!!! 25 days, 25 posts- a post a day, everyday!

There were many times I doubted if I would stick to it. If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you know there are many times I let life sidetrack me from my blogging goals. 

However, this was something I set out to do, to see if I could actually meet the challenge. 

In the beginning, I felt it was pretty easy to post, because I had a few posts already scheduled and ready to go. It was just a matter of checking in on things and then posting to social media. So it was a breeze- then it got harder as I had to post in real time. Every day, I had to set aside time to make sure I could write, edit, and post all in one day. And this is when I realized just how difficult it could be.

With all the holiday things going on- the shopping, the planning, and other things in life like friendships, family, and work, it was difficult to stay on track. Towards the end, I was uploading minutes before midnight! But I made it!

I even blogged ON Christmas Eve AND Christmas Day. I had planned to schedule those ahead of time, but it just got so stressful and so busy, with baking and last minute shopping for the little things. This Christmas was absolutely insane, a lot of traveling around, and it just felt like I was going and going non-stop. I have a new little niece so we had a lot of new special traditions this year. 

So in between all that, I was typing up posts on the go, on my crappy cell phone. Making myself slightly car sick! Lol. Hey, at least you can’t say that’s not dedication! Right? 

Needless to say not only was my cell phone giving me trouble, my laptop decided to die on me too! So in the face of this challenge I had given myself, it felt like there were a lot of obstacles against me. But I pushed past every one. I borrowed my mom’s computer, my aunt’s computer, to continue the journey, I typed notes into my cellphone, I excused myself on Christmas Eve and Day to upload on my brother’s computer, all on minimal hours of sleep and holiday stress. Just so I could prove to myself that I could do this. And I did. Wherever I went I had BLOGMAS on the brain. 

I know it may not be a big deal to some of you reading this, but to me, it’s a huge deal. I often let this blog slide, when I have a lot going on in my life, because it’s my blog, I can pick up whenever or wherever I want. But giving myself a challenge, made me feel like I was  being held accountable for something. Don’t get me wrong I felt rude at times sneaking away to write or sneaking off to work on a post/use someone else’s computer to post. (NOT THAT I USED WITHOUT ASKING PERMISSION, lol, because that would just be rude.) I just mean that I did feel bad doing something for myself in the middle of the holidays where your supposed to be sharing it with others. But it was important to me, and I think they all (or at least I hope they all) understood. I didn’t let it stop me from enjoying time with my family. I did what I had to do for BLOGMAS and shut the computer down and resumed my family time. 

Another thing I had to come to terms with when posting daily, (because I didn’t always have time to plan and pre-write) was that I couldn’t over-analyze my ideas for my posts. I got an idea, if it was feasible in a day, I ran with it. It usually will take me hours to write, edit and post. Especially if it’s a short story. But with BLOGMAS I was in a bit of a constant time crunch. So I had to leave my perfectionism behind. At times it was hard, because I felt like it wasn’t my best work, but BLOGMAS was a learning experience. You don’t have to love what you write, everyday, but writing everyday is great for a writer to do. 

My posts were all Christmas related, which was not my initial intension. But it kind of just happened that way, I guess I was inspired by the season. 

Another thing that was new to me, was posting regularly to my social media websites for this blog during BLOGMAS. In case you didn’t know michelleleighwrites is on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram! Come follow along! I’d love to chat with you! 😉 And as someone who personally doesn’t post to social media everyday, it took some getting used to. But it was a cool experience.

I know I also mentioned this to you guys at some point, how my WordPress account needs updating and I haven’t been able to do that yet, so my photo memory is extremely limited, and so it was a challenge to post without images. I always like to have an image accompany my writing, I feel like it adds a visual aspect. I had to go in and delete images to make room for the few new ones I needed, or work with images I already had. There were many weird obstacles during BLOGMAS, and usually when things like that have happened in the past in life, I would just be like “Oh well, it’s not working, I can’t do it.” But not this time. I set a goal and I met it! I think there was only one day where I posted to social media a few minutes late, but it was posted on the blog, on time, so I was in the clear! Lol. 

It was a long BLOGMAS journey, but it kind of flew by and the more the time passed, the days grew and the numbers on the calendar kept climbing, and I kept posting and it just started to become part of my routine and it started to feel really good. There were times I thought to myself, “I’ve got this,” and there were times where I was like, “Oh no, I’m going to miss my deadline!” But I did it, I posted every day from December 1-25 and I am super proud I was able to commit to it and complete the task I set out to do. For myself, but also for all of you. 

Thank you for reading… (and if you missed any days of the MLW #BLOGMAS series, I will link them all down below for you to browse.)

BLOGMAS -Day 1- Christmas Bucket List

BLOGMAS -Day 2- Christmas Playlist

BLOGMAS -Day 3- Christmas Movie List

BLOGMAS -Day 4- A Broken Heart For Christmas Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 5- My VLOGMAS Favs

BLOGMAS -Day 6- (Mini) VLOGMAS 2016 Update

BLOGMAS -Day 7- Single in Season

BLOGMAS -Day 8- A Christmas Story

BLOGMAS -Day 9- A Christmas Morning Memory

BLOGMAS -Day 10- Winter Wonderland

BLOGMAS -Day 11- The pressure the Holidays put on us

BLOGMAS -Day 12- Snowed Inn Christmas

BLOGMAS -Day 13- “A Husband for Christmas” Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 14- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 2] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 15- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 3] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 16- Cynical Shopping

BLOGMAS -Day 17- My Perfect Winter Day

BLOGMAS -Day 18- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 4] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 19- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 5] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 20- Give me your Light, Oh Lord.

BLOGMAS -Day 21- Winter [2017] Favorites

BLOGMAS -Day 22- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 6] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 23- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 7] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 24- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 8] Short Story

BLOGMAS -Day 25- “A Husband for Christmas” [Part 9] Short Story

 

*STAY TUNED!

My 2017 Highlights/Memory Jar post will be up tomorrow!!! 

Have a very Happy and safe New Year’s Eve and if your feeling the romance tonight- check out some of my New Year’s Eve stories…

Kiss Me At Midnight…A Short Story 

What are you doing New Year’s Eve?

*^ The second is a year after follow-up to the first, it follows the same characters.^*

For Old Times’ Sake

Once again Thanks for reading this year! See you in 2018!

-<3-

BLOGMAS -Day 10- Winter Wonderland

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not my photo.

 

The first snowfall happened over this weekend and it’s hard not to be inspired by the beauty of it all. I had a family party quite a ways away and was actually driving in the car for most of it. I know that snow can be a big pain and can be a total inconvenience. It can stir up feelings of claustrophobia and anxiety for me at times. But the way it looks when it first falls, the way it covers our tree branches in blanketed crisp purity, it is just so beautiful to me. In the car I looked out the window and saw the white flakes falling, as “O Holy Night” by Celine Dion played on the radio. Chills covering my arms.  And Christmas feeling so near. So this poem is about that feeling you get when snow can be just magical. I hope you enjoy!

***

Engine running along

Christmas carols humming strong

Brisk winter breeze

Snow falling gently upon vacant trees

Whispers you hear from the wind

Snowmen waiting to be made

Snow…

Let it snow

Snow…

Lightly kissing the cars and city streets

Santa’s on his way

Elves setting up his sleigh

Although it may be hard to see

Look closely and you will find glee

Snow…

Let it snow

Snow…

Although you may feel cold

Can you see the beauty as it unfolds

Blankets of perfect bright white 

Christmas trees decked in lights

Reindeer waiting for their cue

Taking flight to come see you

Christmas spirit everywhere

Winter Wonderland is here

-<3-