Christmas Movies for 2021

Welcome to the Blogmas Day 1! It’s your choice on what topic you are writing on but I chose to get into the holiday spirit the first day of December by talking about Movies. I watch movies the most during the holidays to get me in the yuletide mood. Whether it’s romance, drama, comedy, or those cheesy Hallmark holiday films I like to see new ones I haven’t seen a million times (although the classics are GREAT too). Even a couple of these I put on while I wrote this post and really enjoyed them. 


Snow: 4/5  stars

Snow 2: Brain Freeze 4/5 stars

A Christmas Switch

Married by Christmas

The Christmas Calendar 4/5 stars



Christmas Inheritance

The Princess Switch 2&3

Holiday Rush

The Christmas Chronicles


Finding Father Christmas

Marrying Father Christmas

Falling for Christmas

Switched for Christmas 5/5 stars

A Shoe Addicts Christmas 5/5 stars

Christmas Under Wraps

It’s Christmas, Eve

Christmas in Evergreen

A very nutty Christmas

Christmas in the Pines


Christmas Unwrapped 5/5 stars

Christmas in Mississippi 

The Santa Stakeout

A Very Vintage Christmas

The Christmas Inn

Boyfriends of Christmas Past

You, Me and the Christmas Trees

Christmas in Harmony

A Storybook Christmas

Christmas 9-5

Holiday Fix-up: December 11th with Jana Kramer


Super-Cute Yule Log

Heaven Sent

Outrageous Holiday Houses

House Hunters Ho Ho Home

Candy Coated Christmas



Ice Age: A Mammoth Christmas

Decorating Disney: Holiday Magic

The Disney Holiday Singalong

Epic Holiday Showdown

Once Upon a Snowman

Olaf Presents 5/5 stars

Olaf’s Frozen Adventure

Home Alone 2&3

Ernest Saves Christmas

Home Sweet Home Alone

Twas The Night

Nutcracker and the Four Realms

Twelve Dates of Christmas 5/5 stars

Snowglobe 5/5 stars

There are at least five ideas on most streaming services of newly added and never before seen (to me) holiday movies. I shared a rating of the few I have been watching and the ones I recommend. I enjoy the fantastical aspect of being in a romantic town and watching the dilemma unfold and then by the end everything is fixed and happy again. For me, Ashley Williams and Candance Cameron Bure are two of my favorite holiday actresses from Hallmark and Lifetime films. I added quite a few of their movies that I have not seen so I’m excited to see the climax and what happens next! 

What are your holiday favorite movies? Are they classics that you watch again and again or new films that were just released/ones you have not seen before? Drop me some movie titles down below that I must see and I’ll be sure to watch them. 

I am thankful for…

Thanksgiving is a very reflective time of year when one can be thankful and grateful for what we have and have gone through throughout the year. I thought this would be a great post to write around this time of year and get to think back about all the things that are easy to take for granted. What are ways in which you remember to be thankful and realize your privilege? Here is my list and I encourage you to do the same and perhaps drop some of yours in the comments below:

I am thankful for…having a loving, caring, respectful and loyal husband, who only wants the best for me. You saved me and I love you more than anything.

I am thankful for… a healthy marriage where we communicate the best we know how and while we have different opinions, we try again and again to always be improving.

I am thankful for… my in-laws showing me what family is and how people are supposed to respect and love one another. While also not taking life too seriously and being serious when it counts.

I am thankful for… the beautiful house we own and love. I enjoy creating a cozy, welcoming, and safe space for all who enter my home.

I am thankful for… my dogs who brighten my days, test my patience and comfort me when I need it. 

I am thankful for… being financially stable and blessed. I cannot say how much I appreciate this and do not take it for granted. 

I am thankful for… all of my wonderful, supportive, and compassionate friends who have been my family for years. And continue to be the best people I know- I hope they all know I love them! 

I am thankful for… having access to food, water, shelter, electricity- things in the developed world. I know not everyone is this lucky to grow up with all of these things and I realize the struggle for some. 

I am thankful for… the opportunity of going (and paying for) college. While I didn’t finish and that wasn’t for me- I still know what a huge deal it is. I did learn a lot from classes and my environment while getting so many experiences I wouldn’t have had otherwise. 

I am thankful for… feeling safe in my neighborhood and community. 

I am thankful for… changing seasons and normalized weather. I wouldn’t want to live in certain places where the sun never comes out or the heat never goes away. I don’t do well in extremes. 

I am thankful for… transportation, that we have a car. We love our Subaru Ascent and we hope to eventually go on more trips and get more stuff done. 

I am thankful for…music. And such variety and thousands of talented artists discovered and not yet discovered. 

I am thankful for… good teachers and staff who cared and really helped me grow up and know who to trust and rely on. 

I am thankful for… convenience. Delivery age now especially because of COVID is just really nice. 

I am thankful for… streaming services like Netflix, HULU, and tons of others- it’s fun to have a bunch of tv and entertainment to choose from and learn about different things. 

I am thankful for… things of comfort like fuzzy socks, a hot cup of tea, and a good book. 

I am thankful for… the enjoyment and relaxation of long hot showers. 

I am thankful for… good hair days and feeling beautiful. 

I am thankful for… wholesome and sweet, welcoming neighbors. People I want to get to know and have community with. 

I am thankful for…choices, in general. I know I’m some countries around the world- that is not a thing for people, families, and especially women. 

I am thankful for… muddy rainstorm puddles to jump in. Because when I’m angry or sad- my husband makes me so that my mood improves. 

I am thankful for… hitting all the green lights- making the trip so much more pleasant. 

I am thankful for… to-do lists. Getting all my tasks out of my head and accomplishing whatever I can at that moment. 

I am thankful for…naps, mid-day naps, going to bed early, sleeping when I want to. 

I am thankful for…bursts of inspiration. Brainstorming with friends. 

I am thankful for… late-night conversations. 

I am thankful for…looking at old pictures, having photos of family and memories at all. 

I am thankful for…happy memories of lost loved ones. I miss them. 

I am thankful for…the internet which allows me to do so much and meet so many great people. 

I wanted to come up with 30 things total for each day in November to show how I have so many very, great things to be grateful for even the small things. Despite what we may not have or how our lives are different and may result in resentment- I have more things to be celebrating than not. Keep that at the forefront of your mind this year- also, you make family it does not have to mean blood, relatives, and obligation. It is who you choose to be in your circle and who lights up your life in the most positive of ways. I hope you have who you want at your table this year and that you eat lots of great food and make happy memories!

Happy Thanksgiving and onto December~

It’s Back: Announcing Blogmas 2021!

I had so much fun a few years ago when we did this and I’m thrilled to be doing it again but sharing with a whole new bunch of people! This challenge or linkup or group- whatever you want to call it, gives me so much inspiration to blog every day of Blogmas and share my holidays with you. I can’t wait…

Blogmas 2021 is a holiday blogging challenge hosted by Nora Spaulding and Hodge Podge Moments. This challenge is set up around 12 prompts that you can use to guide your content planning in December. These prompts are great for blogging, social media, newsletters, or any other digital presence you might have.

This challenge is completely free and we have set up a pop-up Facebook group for communicating and sharing during the challenge. December can be a busy month and we’re hoping to make the content planning a little easier for you.

We have kept all prompts generic and open-ended to allow for a wide variety of content. Along with each topic, we’ll also be providing some ideas to get your creative juices flowing. You should have plenty of content for December through this challenge!

We hosted this challenge a few years ago and it was a huge success! We hope you can join us this year as we revive the challenge and make it even better. Not a blogger? Use the prompts and join us on social media for some added fun and connection!

Does this sound like something you want to check out? Just click here to go to the Facebook group where all of the fun is starting!


  • Music
  • Movies
  • Lists
  • Food & Drink
  • Memories
  • Activities
  • Decorations
  • Crafts
  • Stories
  • Traditions
  • Scenery
  • Favorites

We will have prompts available in our group but feel free to write without them too.

Come along and share some holiday fun with us and get to know others using social media – Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. (Feel free to join along on other platforms using #Blogmas 2021 )


My Shelter Dog Story: Rosie

Wanting A Companion

Early on in our relationship, we always wanted pets. I wanted to feel a bit more protected when Sean was at work or if he wasn’t there, say at night. I wanted a dog and I suppose I jumped at the idea so fast and started looking right away. Right away I got on the adoption forums and looked at a bunch of local shelters. We were looking for a good fit and a long-term dog- a lot of dogs I’ve browsed were older and some were handicapped which didn’t fit with my ability at the time.

Within the first few days, I fell in love with this sweet face, Rosie. She was a black lab greyhound mix and she was about a year old. We went with his dad to the Multnomah County Animal Shelter (MCAS) to go see her in person. When we went in we fell in love; she wasn’t skittish or shy, she was pretty warm and wide-eyed. She was welcoming and happy but not crazy excited and didn’t seem too loud for a young dog. It didn’t take long and we knew we’d want to “save” her and bring her home with us. Really the only concern was her getting more training which at the time we knew we could do since we lived at the park blocks in Portland. We signed a bunch of papers to care for her including any warning signs for behavior- with a young dog there weren’t any known. She was already neutered and we had to keep up on annual shots. Signing actually took forever we were there for hours. We were handed a bag of food and her basic care goodies. Sean’s dad was waiting outside and getting her in the truck was a feat but once we did, she loved it and was a bit anxious.

The Brightside

We got her home and things went well right off the bat. She was a sweet personality and tried to discover everything around her. We spoiled her a lot and got her a bunch of toys and things to train her mind and entertain her. There was this squeaky, fuzzy, squirrel toy. It was her absolute favorite. Being a greyhound, she was a long lengthy dog and didn’t know what to do with her limbs. However, she was a big cuddler and I was all about it. She shed a bit but the hair was so fine that it wasn’t a big deal. And what a goofball, silly personality she had, it made us laugh at her constantly.

The Downside

A few weeks into us having her, caring for her daily, and being her outside for walks and potties, we noticed that she’s A) a puller, and B) a barker; being a puppy, and also very vocal. So that was a negative for us- we should have started training but didn’t with me in school and really did not have the extra budget or space for it. The more we tried to help her and cut her off the behavior- the more we didn’t know what we were doing and the worse it got.

BIg Dog, Small Apartment

We started to feel bad that she was inside a lot and not being socialized and also didn’t get training like we should have gotten. So after about a month or two, we decided it was probably better she had a bigger yard and someone who could really dedicate the time to train her. Although we knew these things and the risks with a larger-sized dog- I just wanted to make it work so much. I felt really bad about my choices however it was great having her while we did. And granted, she was a young dog so she would get readopted right away.

We ended up taking her back to the shelter and relinquished her to their care, I felt awful to do it but the 400 sq ft apartment wasn’t fair to her and I realized that too late. We signed all the papers again to give her back and we cried because we really loved her, like a lot. Even now, we get sad wishing we had been in a better spot to keep her. But it was for the best, in the end, a lot of people may disagree or judge us for our failure to think about the ramifications in the beginning. I have to say I was only 19-20 years old and I just very flippantly wanted a dog. What I realized was; really all I could handle and have time for was a cat, so later on we did that and it worked out much better. I know for a fact, via our conversations with the shelter that she was adopted almost immediately after (within a week or so) to a family with a large backyard. I was glad she got a second chance and thrived I’m sure.

I would say there are a few basic questions to answer before you go looking for a pet- specifically a shelter dog;

What time constraints do you have? Are you a 9-5 worker? A student? Self-employed or have someone to watch them if you’re away during the day?

Budget: What are you expecting to pay for all goods and services? Adoption fees? Food and care costs? Shots- those can be spendy too. Neuter/Spay if not already? Medical costs down the line- tests and treatment can also be expensive and add up fast.

Can you train (do you have time to?) or will you hire someone to train them with/for you? It’s important that a dog, especially a young dog get the basis and knowledge of how to behave and please the owner so they can be safe and loved at home and out in public.

Grooming: This is another smaller topic because some dogs need a LOT of grooming. Whether that be daily brushing, baths, or de-shedding and others don’t need much at all or any in some cases. But this should also be a point you think about when bringing your pet home.

Anyway, I hope you learn from my mistakes and really think about each of these things before bringing in any dog or animal that might not make sense for your lifestyle. I know much better now and although I’m not a perfect pet parent- I do what’s necessary and needed for the wellbeing of my pet and we do the best we can. Thanks for letting me share her with you and drop any comments or shelter dog stories you have below. Let me know if you have a shelter dog you’d like to feature for my Pet Story of the Week series.

Hi! I'm Nora

I’m a stay-at-home wife & dog-mom. I began this blog ten years ago,  I couldn’t ignore that I felt a calling to help people find comfort, a sense of belonging or a place of community whenever they really needed it. » Read more about me here on my About page!

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