Penny's Passion: Thinking Out Loud Thursday - December 3, 2020

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Thinking Out Loud Thursday - December 3, 2020

Welcome to Thinking Out Loud Thursday!  I'm going to share something that I'm thinking out loud about and invite you to link up and do the same.

Like many of you, the holiday season is heavy on my mind.  It's going to look different this year.  We won't be having my family over for a visit with Santa.  No holiday parties or gatherings.  What we are planning to do is make the best of it.  Here are some of the things that will be bringing us joy.

Sparkey the Elf popped in this week to visit Eric.  Elf on the Shelf wasn't really a thing when our son was little, so I missed this whole phase.  I was a bit jealous of all the parents out there getting to experience this with their kids so I made the decision to do it for Eric.  Yes, Eric is an adult.  But that doesn't mean we can't have fun with it!

It fills my cup to do things for others and I know I'm not alone in that.  So I contacted a senior living facility near our subdivision to see if our neighborhood could adopt their residents.  They were thrilled to accommodate this mission!  I'm currently collecting boxes of tissues, boxes of movie candy, and holiday cards for each resident.  After posting on our subdivision Facebook page, lots of neighbors jumped on the bandwagon to help.  We placed a large tote on the porch and our neighbors are dropping off their donations.  It was so wonderful to get a huge positive response from our neighbors willing to donate to this cause!  Every day when I empty the tote, a warm feeling fills my soul.  There really are good people out there!

One of the joys we started years ago was to have a tree in our master bedroom.  I absolutely love to lay in bed, reading a book in the glow of the tree.  With less hustle and bustle this season, we have more time to relax and enjoy the beauty of the season.

This is the tree where all our special ornaments are hung.  The one that looks like a baseball given to me in honor of my friend Jane, who lost her battle with cancer.

The one our niece painted of me and Eric.  

And this one was given to me by my friend Tracy in the first year of my blog.

And many others that make me smile when I see them.

Some of my friends in the neighborhood are participating in a Secret Santa gift exchange.  We're leaving small gifts with a hint of who we are once a week until Christmas.  Then on a Zoom call, we'll tell the hints we received and guess who our Secret Santa is.  

Eric and I sat down and created a bucket list for the holiday season.  On it are things like making his grandmother's rum balls and driving through a holiday light display.  I also have a stack of books to read over break.  A different list than normal, but still things that will bring us joy.

What are some things you will be doing this holiday season to bring you joy?   We are in search of a few more things so I'd love to hear what's on your list!

Now it's your turn - what are you thinking out loud about today?  Link up and share!

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter


  1. I've been on the hunt for a small tree for our bedroom. I have to keep on the down low though as my husband would not agree that we need one.

  2. We had a local craftsman design signs for our grown up sons with family name and a carved design. Very excited to gift this treasure.

  3. If you and Eric plan to make those rum balls you better do it soon. They are really best if made 6-8 weeks prior to serving. This allows the rum to ferment for best flavor and potency. But hey you could serve them on Valentine’s Day for that little extra kick and warmth in February. We plan on attending the Drive through light display at World Wide Technology Raceway In Madison, IL.

  4. Your idea of "adopting" a senior center is wonderful and touched my heart. During this whole mess, the elderly who are alone and catching this virus in large numbers, have really tortured me. What a sweet gesture to help them have some holiday joy.
    I also love your bucket list! I made an advent calendar for couples and featuring it on my blog last week. It has lots of activities on it for my husband and I to celebrate simple pleasures of the season each day.
    Thanks for hosting, Penny!
    -Niky @ The House on Silverado

  5. That is so very cool. Love the idea of "adopting" a senior center. Very nice. Thanks for hosting and I hope that you have a wonderful Thursday.

  6. We put our tree up a few weeks ago and have decorated the house a bit. My daughter and I plan to bake cookies. I love that you have adopted seniors in your community. So many of them are by themselves during the holiday, especially this year due to the pandemic. Thanks so much for hosting and have a great week!

  7. Thank you for hosting and what great ornaments. Decorating the tree and talking about the past ornaments our kiddos made has become a favorite holiday tradition for us too. With four kiddos--who are all growing up fast—this has become such a fun way to reflect on happy memories from the past.

  8. I really enjoyed visiting your site today, Penney! Wow, you are an inspiration with all you do besides managing your beautiful blog! Thank you for sharing and thanks for having this party. I hope you have a wonderful and healthy holiday season!


    Tee @ Teediddlydee