Wow, is it really the last week of 2014?! Where has the year gone?
I suppose I should back up first and ask how everybody’s Christmas was. I hope you had a very blessed and merry Christmas full of warmth, cheer…and delicious food! Philip and I continued our (1 year) tradition by going to a Christmas Eve service on Wednesday followed by going out for sushi and sipping on hot chocolate at home. Since we didn’t decorate for Christmas this year and our thoughts have mainly been focused on our new house, it finally felt like Christmas for us.
Ever since we moved into our new home last Saturday, we have been in mild disarray for the past week; so it was especially nice to get away for a few days and head to Iowa to spend Christmas with my parents. It still felt great to come back home, though. And now begins a few days of painting! I’ll fill you in on that next week.
Now back to the new realization I had that 2014 is almost over. I feel like the last week of any year is a good time to reflect on everything that happened during the past year and to anticipate what’s to come in the coming year. 2014 has been an exciting year and seemed to be a year of “firsts” for me. I started a new job in January, launched this blog (!!), successfully completed my first triathlon and marathon, celebrated Philip and mine’s one year wedding anniversary, and we bought our first home! I can’t wait to see what next year will bring.
Whatever the year may bring, I know I’ll be bringing you more tasty and healthy recipes for you to try in the coming year (is that a sigh of relief I hear? ;)). In keeping with this year-end reflection time, here are your top 10 favorite posts from 2014.
10) Chicken Noodle Soup with Homemade Egg Noodles. This is still one of my favorite soups and is the classic comfort food during the winter months. Although it takes a little more time to make the homemade egg noodles, it is completely worth it.
9) Individual Strawberry Rhubarb Pies with Almond Crust. Aren’t these just the cutest?! It makes it feel like spring again just looking at them. These refreshing desserts with the hint of almond plays well with the strawberries and rhubarb.
8) Honey-Lime Chicken Enchiladas. All I can say is, good choice on this one! The cilantro and lime liven up the enchiladas and puts you in the fiesta mood. There’s just enough heat and sweetness to make it all work.
7) Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding. Delicious meets healthy with this one! Chia seeds are finding their way into everything these days, including pudding! This super food gels up in liquid, making it the perfect ingredient to make pudding. This recipe is probably as simple as it gets (besides buying an Instant Jell-O package).
6) Soft & Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies. My mouth is watering just looking at the picture. Speaking of pudding, instant pudding mix — an ingredient in the recipe — is responsible for the name of these cookies. So delicious. I’ll never use another chocolate chip cookie recipe again.
5) Roasted Beet & Farro Salad. I think I gave a delighted (and to be honest, surprised) little yelp when I saw that this recipe was one of your top posts of the year. I was definitely on a roasted beets kick this year and they go so well in this salad with the pear and goat cheese. Farro also became my favorite grain of the year and is only gaining popularity in 2015. Watch out kale, farro is the new health food in town.
4) Homemade Cinnamon Granola. Some things just don’t change. I made countless batches of this granola all year long. It’s still my go-to granola and I’m delighted it was a hit with you, too! Since our move, I haven’t been able to restock and I’m definitely missing it already.
3) Cookies ‘n Cream Cookies. These are my all-time favorite cookies. They’re on the verge of being dangerously delicious. If you haven’t made these, I recommend you do. These are guaranteed to be a hit with anybody who tries them.
2) One Year Wedding Anniversary + Our Story. Wow, I’m honored so many of you enjoyed reading about our story of how we met. It truly was a joy to share it with all of you (and gave me a great reason to document it). It’s been so fun to go back and read it. Makes me smile every time. God is good.
1) Creamy Stovetop Mac & Cheese. This recipe blew all the others out of the park! By far, this was the most viewed post of the year. And for good reason. I mean, just look at that luscious, melted cheese generously covering every cranny of the noodles. If that’s not comfort food, I don’t know what is.
Thanks for reading my tiny space of the world wide web and for all your great comments and feedback this year! I love having this blog as a creative outlet and you as readers make it all worth it! Have a very Happy and Healthy New Year!