DIY Rosemary Christmas Trees

Christmas is here! We’ve been celebrating by slowing putting up decorations, working on shopping for gifts, and enjoying some festive making. This little project I completed for the World Market Blog brings together my love for fresh greenery and herbs with a simple, rustic Christmas style to create small DIY Rosemary Christmas trees for gifts, centerpieces, or to decorate your home for the season.
rosemary-christmas-tree-diy-7 rosemary-christmas-tree-diy-9 Our home in Texas has a garden for the first time in our lives, and one of the herbs that has been flourishing into large bushes is Rosemary. I’ve long loved the flavor it adds to breads and drinks, along with meats and basically any meal. I also appreciate the historical symbolism it holds being associated with weddings and prosperity. It is a readily available herb at stores and markets, which makes it perfect to use for this simple project.

The stems are woody and hard, with soft, fragrant needles. They look like small pine trees when cut into pieces and shaped in a small mason jar or vase. Not only do these Rosemary Christmas Trees bring beauty and festivity to the table, but also the most wonderful fragrance.

(Let’s also take a moment to notice those darling little sweaters! DIY sweater garland tutorial coming soon!)
rosemary-christmas-tree-diy-4 rosemary-christmas-tree-diy-5 Rosemary stays fairly green as it dries, and holds its shape well, so these can be made and enjoyed for the whole season.

For full instructions, head over to my post on Discover. Happy Making! rosemary-christmas-tree-diy-1

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Joy to the World Globe Ornament // Light the World campaign

Tis the season of simple, useful crafts that make the Christmas holiday a bit more special. When I spotted these globe ornaments at World Market the other day for 3 for $5, I immediately grabbed a few. A little hand lettering turns the already cool ornament into a holiday greeting, perfect for sharing with friends or family tied onto a treat or as a gift topper. This Joy to the World Globe Ornament is pretty straightforward, and I’ll walk you though it!
joy-to-the-world-ornament-diy With all of the divisions we’ve felt as a country and world lately, this ornament and message feel particularly poignant. I’ve been considering in what ways I can teach my family to feel unified with our community and world, and the first idea that always feels right is to reach out in service to those who we might not feel we have much in common with.

Today, December 1st is The Worldwide Day of Service that kicks off a beautiful Light the World campaign for the Christmas season. The ideas is to offer simple acts of service each day for the 25 days of December, turning our hearts and thoughts outside of ourselves. The campaign has a full downloadable calendar of ideas, with simple themes for each day based on characteristics of Jesus. I also love this young-kid version that takes away some of the brainstorming and decision making.

The whole campaign is beautiful and in a lot of ways reminds me of the advent activities that we have done for years. Ours mixed service opportunities with family activities, but when I place them side by side, a lot of the same ideas apply.

Specifically, this Worldwide Day of Service has me thinking of some simple ways I can get out and serve with my kids. Things with little advance preparation, because I was becoming quickly overwhelmed by the feeling of needing to come up with something to add to our schedule each day. I stumbled upon this list of simple service activities to do with young kids and I think we’ll choose from this list for what to do today.

I really like the idea of direct service. Stuffing warm socks with fruit and snacks and giving them to the homeless seems like an activity the kids would enjoy, and also offer a simple way to directly give. (I’m thinking through the car window on some of the stoplight corners downtown.) It’s also something I could prepare for with a quick trip to Costco, and assembly could even happen in the car on the way.

Whatever service we offer won’t be in vain. Even the act of considering what types of projects or service activities we might do fills me up with a desire to reach out and offer help to those in need, both among my own circle of influence, and without.

Maybe that’s a bit of what this ornament is about, too. Coming together, and feeling united with our brothers and sisters in our neighborhoods, communities, as well as the nation and world.
joy-to-the-world-ornament-diy-15 You’ll need:

a globe ornament

a paint pen that will stand out against the background. I chose white.

joy-to-the-world-ornament-diy-16 You can practice your lettering a few times on paper if you’d like. Remember that the personal touch is what makes this little craft special, so it is totally okay to use your normal handwriting if you (like I) don’t have a lot of hand lettering experience under your belt.

Also, you can pencil in your letters before you begin. But I just went for it.

Start with the “Joy”, making it large enough to be seen from a few feet away.

Add “to the” slightly smaller and not in cursive script

Finish with a large “World, to balance out the “Joy” and wrap most of the way around the ornament. joy-to-the-world-ornament-diy-20 In this Christmas season, let us create Joy in the World through our service to others. Doing so will share the light of Christ far and wide.

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Family Photo Tips + Christmas Cards

It’s not even December and I’ve almost got all of my Christmas cards addressed and ready to send! One helpful factor was that we took our family photos this year back in early October, the day before Dave and my 10th wedding anniversary. The anniversary was a great motivation to get them done far before the Holiday Season began, and funny enough even though I was set with photos months ago, I just ordered my cards from Minted last week, and they arrived a few days later. So if you’re feeling a bit behind, don’t fret. You have plenty of time! I’ve also partnered with Minted to give away two $125 credits at the end of this post. Make sure not to miss it! christmas-card-family-photo-tips-1 I want to share a family photo tips that will help get just what you want this year. We’ve done them every year since Dave and I were married, so we’ve had some practice! (I started writing a post about our anniversary that has each of the photos in it…but it’s in draft still. I’ll get to it sometime before next anniversary!) Some years have turned out better than others, and I believe this year is my very favorite yet. The family photos are beautiful, and very much feel like a great reflection of our family at this stage of our life. There are a couple things I did differently this year that I feel made a huge difference, and a couple things I learned that I will remember for the future. Let’s dive in to the family photo tips!

Create a pinboard to share with the photographer. This year was the first time I had thought to spend a few minutes communicating with photos the types of photos I was hoping for! It makes so much sense, and Pinterest is a great place both to gain inspiration and to share ideas. Melisa Mckinney, our photographer, left comments and added ideas to the family photos pinboard that I shared with her, and I was sure that we went into the session on the same page.  christmas-card-family-photo-tips-6 Choose a mood rather than thinking too hard about color combinations. In the past I have tried to match, but in a not-too-matchy way, and was sometimes left feeling a little bit lost. It feels much more simple to figure out which types of outfits go together when they’re all pointing towards a mood or a couple key inspiration words. For our photos this year my mood was earthy, dressy, and a little bohemian. For the earthy I kept everyone in neutrals or natural feeling fabrics, and my florals fit right in. Dressy, rather than casual, meant we would be in dresses and ties. And the bohemian feeling came in with the wide, field of flowers shots and kiddos dancing around us.  christmas-card-family-photo-tips-16 Keep it quick to get the best shots while the kids are still happy. I am always amazed by what type of photos can come out of an hour or less family photo session when all it has felt like to me is craziness.  christmas-card-family-photo-tips-2-2 Stay positive during the shoot, trying to keep the mood light and go with the flow a little bit as kids run to and fro. The running, chasing, dancing, laughing and tickling can make some of the best candid shots of the whole session! christmas-card-family-photo-tips-4 Bring treats for the kids, and a silly hat for the photographer. I did the former, but forgot the latter, which is one reason I think Plum didn’t give out too many smiles in our group shot. It isn’t natural for kids to stand and smile for someone they don’t know (and oftentimes for their own mom!) so, expecting that they’ll grin big just because we tell them to is crazy. Having some small, non-melting treats on hand like fruit snacks or smarties can be just what they need for motivation. And for the youngest ones, having something silly over on the photographer or camera that can be a focus point for laughter could make all the difference in their smiles. I’ll try that for our family photo next year.
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DIY Christmas Window Lightbox

I’ve been tiptoeing into the Christmas decorating, taking things corner by corner rather than breaking it all out at once. I also was up the other night trying to figure out if there was a common Christmas phrase that had exactly 25 letters in it that I could use for this simple and really fun DIY Window Lightbox Advent Calendar.

I hit on it!

“Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Man” has 25 letters, one for each day of December leading up into Christmas day. See the details of this minimal holiday corner and the DIY in today’s At Home Inspiration post!
diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-19 diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-21 diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-23 If you know me at all, you know I’m a little bit of a minimalist, when it comes to design and decor. I get easily overwhelmed and overstimulated by too much stuff or too many decisions, so I have tried to hone my style and stay true to what I know I love. Things on that list include natural wooden decor, modern and graphic designs, textured textiles, and neutral or earthy colors.

It was so fun to go on a hunt in At Home for some Christmas decor that was right up my alley. Luckily, they have something for just about everyone. Seriously, every color, style, look, and price point of ornaments, trees, statues, dishes, furniture….have you visited At Home lately? It’s a superstore. I quickly picked up this natural wooden nutcracker. He makes me so happy (and Eliot told me I should paint him! Ha!) The wire reindeer and modern trees add compliment him well. And this woven wall hanging? How cool is this?
diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-33 Aaaaand I also found a spinning office chair for my studio that I want to sit in all day. I know, that’s not Christmas decor at all. But it was sort of like a Christmas gift to myself. Right? The Eames-inspired design had me sold on sight. Plus, it’s super comfortable and now I can swivel back and forth between my sewing machines and cutting table without the scooting and twisting I was doing before.

The black wall of my indoor patio room felt like the perfect place to add these modern Christmas touches. I also thought the window lightbox would pop here with the dark wall as an anchor. And, it looks amazing! Although, now that I put all of the letters up at once, to determine the spacing for the washi tape lines, I think I’ll keep it all up rather than using the letters as an advent calendar.

I know, all of that time spent thinking of the perfect phrase! I think this was the right one to remember to keep perspective in this crazy post-election whirlwind. Peace on Earth, Goodwill to Man.
diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-19 diy-window-lightbox-one-little-minute-25 I made the letters using black cardstock mounted onto clear acrylic, then cut into separate pieces. The idea is that the window becomes the lightbox and the letters glow with the light of the sun.

Let’s make one! Here’s what you need:

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Vintage Eclectic Home in Portland, Oregon

Last month Dave and I went to Portland, Oregon to visit my little brother Taylor and his girlfriend Meagan (and their two dogs, two cats, and five chickens). They bought their first home last summer and we were excited to get a chance to see the space and spend a few days as their houseguests while we explored a little bit around the town.

From the moment we walked in, I was enveloped in this amazing cozy feeling that lives inside a home that is filled will love and intention. These two have designed and collected, arranged and styled their eclectic, vintage-filled home beautifully. Every where I looked there was another little corner to admire and something special to see.

They kindly agreed to let me take a million photos of their awesome home and share them with you here.
vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-1 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-3 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-35 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-41 Something you should know about Taylor and Meagan is that they are the real deal. Portland is filled with millennial hipsters who want to #liveauthentic and whatever that really means, but these two walk the walk. They buy used and salvaged all of the time which adds to the incredible character in their home. They eat true food, some grown in their own garden. They are fiercely loyal to their friends, local business, and caring for the environment. They are some of the most genuine and kind-hearted people you may ever meet. And inside their home everything has a story. Layers and layers of stories.

Taylor gave all of the design praise to Meagan who, he says, is rearranging things all the time. I couldn’t get enough of the combinations of pretty brass, natural wood, cozy textiles, and of course lots of plants. She’s a more crazy plant lady than I am, I think! They shared the same sentiment that I’ve always felt, that homes are always a work in progress and how they have plans to take out a piece of one wall, add different flooring upstairs, change out some light fixtures when the right ones come along. And in the meantime, enjoy it all the way it is.

vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-4 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-6 There was some serendipity to the way they talked about thrifting. Like this amazing cream and read bookcase is actually two pieces that were found at different times. And clearly are part of the same original piece. They’ve filled it to the brim with interesting books about art and nature, politics and history. Also taxidermy and motorcycling, which fit the bill perfectly.
vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-7 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-8 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-10 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-11 vintage-eclectic-portland-bungalow-12 My theory that plants add life instantly to a space holds true in this cool home as well. Meagan has quite a collection all happy and healthy in classic terra cotta as well as some in amazing vintage tin cans and brass bowls. She also understands the power of thinking through the details. Putting things in a beautiful place and creating vignettes. There were so many interesting places to look and things to see.

And then I fell in love with the chickens.   Read More »

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Scandinavian Gatherings + Hand-Stamped Wrapping

I’m starting to pull out Christmas decorations, snuggle up with a mug of hot wassail at night, and enjoy the cooler weather and coziness of the upcoming holiday season. As I worked on organizing my craft studio last weekend I pulled out this beautiful book Scandinavian Gatherings, written by one of my good blogger friends Melissa Bahen of Lulu The Baker. It was released back in September, and I have oohed and ahhed over the gorgeous craft projects, mouth-watering recipes, and beautiful styling and photography for months. In flipping through again I realized I had on hand everything I needed to dig into one of the DIY projects: Hand-Stamped Wrapping Paper.
scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-6 scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-5 I’ve been a fan of stamping for a long time, but have mostly used a slightly more complicated hand-carved stamp for block printing. I love the handmade touch that hand-stamped wrapping paper brings to a gift, and its something I also love including my kids in. I usually have rolls of kraft butcher paper on hand for the more rustic and natural feeling wrapping that I love, and the style fits right in with a classic, simple Scandinavian minimalism.
scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-1 Melissa’s Hand-Stamped DIY shared in Scandinavian Gatherings is a few steps more simple than my usual carving method, and I loved it!

She uses adhesive-backed foam cut into simple shapes then stuck onto wooden blocks to make the stamps. The book supplies a few simple templates, and I went ahead and freehand cut some of my own including cactus, because…cactus. Rolling out the wrapping paper and using basic colors for the stamping, I was able to create a couple beautiful rolls in just a few minutes.
scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-2 scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-3 There is something wonderfully therapeutic about hand crafting, especially around the holidays and this book is filled cover to cover with approachable, lovely crafts and ideas not just for Christmas, but for gatherings year-round. Melissa shares ideas and recipes for a Nordic Brunch, Woodland Tea Party, Midsummer Feast, Afternoon Fika, Summer Seafood Celebration, Heritage Dinner, Lucia Day, Christmas Cookie Exchange, Christmas Eve Supper, and even some Birthday Treats.
scandinavian-gatherings-one-little-minute-blog-4 My family heritage is Danish, so some of the specific traditions and recipes are familiar to me, like her spiced cider that is exactly what my mother makes every winter. There are also so many that I have never heard of and can’t wait to try. I have long loved and admired Melissa’s down to earth lifestyle and dedication to simple, beautiful food and crafts, and Scandinavian Gatherings is a perfect celebration of those things she does so well. It is on my list to give to some family and friends this Christmas season (wrapped in hand-stamped paper, of course!) and I am excited to continue working through the recipes and crafts all year long.

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Nick Jr. Mega Play Date // Learning Shows

Sponsored by Nick Jr. All content and ideas are my own!

Something I didn’t realize when I first became a mom was how kids are always learning. From the moment they wake up until the moment they go to sleep, their little brains are making new connections, expanding in new ways, and exploring new possibilities. Indeed, some of the frustrations that arise for parents in early-childhood are a direct result of these cute kiddos discovering what happens when…fill in the blank (usually with something that makes a huge mess!) In recognizing how their learning is ongoing, we’ve tried to facilitate that by creating an environment at home where the learning is positive.

I’ve partnered with Nick Jr. today to share about a fun playdate they hosted in Austin last month, as well as my thoughts about how we use “learning shows” as a tool to build confidence, understanding, and experimentation.
nick-jr-mega-playdate-8 nick-jr-mega-playdate-2 nick-jr-mega-playdate-3 In our house, I’ve tried to be really intentional with the environment we have created for the kids. From teaching my kids to bake, to creating a creative studio for them, to making sure the shows they watch on tv have something positive to teach.

We call these “learning shows” and Nick Jr. is a network that gets it. From the time they started to watch video clips online, I’ve tried to vet all of the shows they are exposed to for positive messaging and educational content. With Plum speaking Spanish, Dora and Diego were obvious choices for a little bilingual exposure. And I have a soft spot for Bubble Guppies introducing an imaginative school environment to Eliot before he started Kindergarten.

The highlighted shows for the Mega Playdate in Austin, though, were Blaze and the Monster Machines and Shimmer and Shine. I didn’t realize before, but Blaze is the first preschool show on TV to teach all of the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) concepts in every episode. I love the deliberate emphasis on teaching real concepts to our littles through these fun characters and stories that they can love.

Shimmer and Shine are some lovable best friend genies who solve problems by using teamwork and resilience, both such important core values that we’re working on instilling in our kids every day.

Milo and Eliot know that when they have their 30 minutes of screen time after school, they can choose any “learning show” that they want, so while they relax on the couch, their little minds continue to build connections and discover new concepts. And I’ve seen those come out in conversation and play where they’ll tell me something they know because they saw it on the show.  nick-jr-mega-playdate-4 nick-jr-mega-playdate-6 And of course, the real value of the “learning shows” is taking those concepts that they’ve learned, and applying them to real life in real situations of play and exploration. I loved seeing the kids get into all of the activities provided at Thinkery during the play date. This children’s museum is one of our favorites, and we spend a lot of time there!  They painted wooden cars, used the magnet and light boards, decorated crowns, raced Blaze Monster Trucks, built a life-sized car with the puzzle pieces, and stretched their imaginations by including every single tipping on their cupcakes at the cupcake bar.

Plum became very attached to the Shimmer and Shine dolls, loving their long hair and cute genie outfits. She carried one around with her all night, and has one she carries around at home, too. Also please notice the genie bottle necklace that she wouldn’t take off. So cute.

The boys went wild for the huge variety of Blaze trucks. They raced the pull-back trucks along the slick floor, tried out the looped racetrack with some smaller trucks, and have had so much fun at home with their remote control Blaze Monster Trucks. It’s fun for them to take the characters from the shows and be able to play even when the screens are off. nick-jr-mega-playdate-5 nick-jr-mega-playdate-7 nick-jr-mega-playdate-9 We had such a great time playing with Nick Jr. and loved getting to know the characters of some of their shows even better!

Created in partnership with Nick Jr. all opinions and ideas are my own.

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DIY Paper Basket for Thanksgiving Place Setting

diy-paper-basket-one-little-minute-blog-4 diy-paper-basket-one-little-minute-blog-2 I have been excited about the idea of working on some video tutorials and tip toeing into that new medium for sharing crafts and ideas. With that in mind, I jumped at the chance to create an instagram video sharing this simple kraft paper basket tutorial I had floating around in my head.

These small paper baskets are simple enough to complete in just a few minutes each, using basic craft materials you probably have around the house. I love the idea of filling these little baskets with festive treats and setting them on each plate around the Thanksgiving table, even adding names to the handles to see as name cards.
diy-paper-basket-one-little-minute-blog-1 I’m a super amateur video maker, and loved learning as I went along creating this very quick video. (It’s mostly quick because it’s sped up so much to fit on IG!)


Here are the step by step instructions, in case you don’t catch every step during the video.

To make a kraft paper basket you’ll need:
1 page of 8.5″ x 11″ kraft paper cardstock
a ruler
a pencil
scissors
double-sided tape
fresh greenery
gold/glitter washi tape
treats for filling

  1. Using the ruler, measure 8 1/2″ strips along the long side of the paper
  2. Cut down the lines, creating 8 11″x 1/2″ strips
  3. Choose 2 strips and cut 3″ from the edge, leaving them at 8″ x 1.5″
  4. Lay out 3 strips and add double sided tape to the center of the middle strip, and two pieces on each of the other strips on either side of the center.
  5. Weave the other three strips in between the three with tape so that the paper overlaps along the taped areas and a basket weave creates the base of the basket.
  6. Holding your finger along the edge of the basket base square and fold the long edges straight up vertically to begin creating the basket sides.
  7. Add double stick tape to one end of each of the shortened strips and stick the ends together on each, forming two loops.
  8. On each edge of the basket base, grab every-other strip and pull them to the center, then slide the first loop down towards the base.
  9. Grab the opposite strips (continuing the basket weave up the basket sides) towards the center, and thread the second loop down towards the base.
  10. Choose two center strips opposite each other and tape the ends together creating the basket handle.
  11. Fold each of the long strip ends down over the edge of the upper loop, finishing the top end of the basket.
  12. Trim the long edges back to 1/2″, then add double stick tape to each cut edge to stick down along the edge.
  13. Add a bit of greenery tucked in between the paper along the handle, then wrapped up and around the handle itself. I used eucalyptus, but almost any soft-stemmed greens will do.
  14. Cut 1″ of gold washi tape in half, then add it to secure the greenery along the handle.
  15. Fill the basket with treats and add to your Thanksgiving table.

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Fabric Organization by Season

A couple months ago I went through one of those crafter’s purge days where I pulled every single thing from my craft and sewing closet and set out to reorganize. After a couple hours of working through piles, rediscovering old favorites, and shaking my head at the amount of fabric I had amassed over the last ten years, I hit on a new method of organization that I believe will work better for me than any I’ve used before. That is, fabric organization by season.  fabric-organization-by-season-1

I have been traditionally great at living pretty minimally as far as my wardrobe, meal planning, groceries, and decorating style. The one area in which minimalism seems to elude me is in fabric and craft supplies. However, that afternoon of organizing I realized how just as in the other areas the minimalism creates space for maximizing time and creativity, so would reducing and focusing my collection of fabric and supplies.

I also realized that as I’m trying to sew from my own sewing stash of fabric, rather than buy something new every time I begin a new project, I needed to have the fabric organized in a way that I could most easily be inspired by what I currently have. I spent some quality time deciding what I really love and wanted to keep, and putting the rest–probably over a hundred yards of fabric– into a big bin in the garage to sell or donate at some point. (I mean, look at all of this fabric!)

Next, before trying to put things away, I pondered HOW I like to approach a new sewing project. I realized that when I am trying to work on something new, and because I sew mostly clothing, I most often am searching for something seasonally appropriate! I sew rompers in the spring, watercolor caftans in the summer, sweaters in the fall, and woolen dresses in the winter. Each of these items requires a specific type and color of fabric that fits the mood and style of the season. With that realization, I began separating my fabric into piles by season. I bunched knits in with wovens, lawns with linens, and spandex with lace. Each pile began to feel very much inspired by the season I assigned to it, and I also began to feel inspired by being able to easily reach for a single drawer of fabric when I began looking for a new project.
fabric-organization-by-season I love the way this fabric organization method will encourage me to use what I have by showcasing the materials that are appropriate for what comes next. Right now I should be digging into that winter basket and starting on a sweatshirt or two for Plum (and also finally whipping up the Nituna coat I’ve had that Pendelton Plaid ready for since she was one.)

I also don’t feel too bad leaving my beautiful floral linens alone for a few months, knowing how refreshing they’ll feel in the spring. 
fabric-organization-by-season-2 Cheers to minimizing, organizing, refreshing, and feeling inspired by a new way of doing things. I have been happily working on so many other projects lately that sewing had taken a bit of a back burner (until I was down to the wire for Halloween and whipped out our Wizard of Oz costumes.) I’m recommitting to get back in there and use up some of my Winter fabrics before the season blows by.

ps remember when my entire craft room was inside a coat closet? Now look at it!

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Holiday Appetizer Ideas

November has begun and I’m already feeling the coziness of the holidays at home.

We love entertaining regularly, and during this Thanksgiving and Christmas season we have friends coming and going all the time. I had a great time putting together five of my favorite simple holiday appetizer ideas. They’re all super simple to put together, but each tastes amazing and is a great crowd pleaser. Perfect for quick get togethers or big parties.
favorite-holiday-appetizers-21 favorite-holiday-appetizers-17 favorite-holiday-appetizers-2 favorite-holiday-appetizers-6 Cheese and Charcuterie

Let’s begin with the cheese and charcuterie plate. A party isn’t a party without some cheese and cured meats, and it’s one of the most simple and impactful appetizers to put together. I like to include a basic hard cheese, familiar to everyone like a sharp cheddar. Then I add a more interesting hard cheese, like this 1000 day gouda. Next add a soft cheese like brie or chèvre. Then round out the plate with a bleu cheese, this one is a creamy roquefort.

For meats I like to include salami and prosciutto, and I found a great variety pack at Trader Joe’s with these three delicious types.

I like to add some sweet and sour pairings, like purple grapes and small cornichons. Sometimes I add nuts or chocolate as well. There really isn’t anything that doesn’t feel at home on the smorgasbord pile. My favorite way to arrange is putting everything all onto one pretty board, and was all heart eyes when I spotted this marble and wood version during my latest stop into At Home favorite-holiday-appetizers-26 To accompany the cheese and charcuterie, I piled a variety of crackers and some sliced French baguette into this rustic turkey basket, perfect for Thanksgiving entertaining. favorite-holiday-appetizers-20 Popcorn Balls

Next up are these harvest-style popcorn balls. I had never actually made popcorn balls before, and my neighbor suggested them as a fun appetizer idea. I quickly scanned the internet for some simple ideas and turns out making popcorn balls is just like making rice crispies!

They are as simple as dumping a bag of mini marshmallows into a bowl in the microwave with 2 tsp of butter, and heating until melted and soft (around 30 seconds.) Then pour the mixture over some popped popcorn (I used 2 microwaveable bags, and tossed the unpeopled kernels first). After you mix around for a bit, you can toss in other fun goodies–I added cranberries and cinnamon spiced pumpkin seeds– then form them into balls and let them sit a bit.  favorite-holiday-appetizers-7 The result are these delightfully chewy and sweet, but not too sweet balls of harvest goodness. I expected them to stay sticky, but once the mallows cool down, they’re pretty easy to eat without getting your hands messy. Piled up in this cool asymmetrical ceramic bowl, they’re inviting and awesome. I finally had to give a bunch away so I would stop eating them myself. They’re super good and super addictive.  Read More »

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Favorite Things to Give

I can hardly believe it’s already time to start thinking about the upcoming gift-giving season. I’m excited today to share some of my very favorite things that would all make excellent gifts for friends and family this year. I’ve also joined with 30 other creative bloggers to not only share these ideas, but also a giveaway. Each of us are sending one winner our favorite things! That means 30 winners total. Hooray! Now let me show you what I chose for my own favorites giveaway. favorite-things-1

  • Stump Print by Light and Ink
    I have a couple of these framed in my entry and this 8 x 10 hanging in my studio. I love them! The simple, organic designs come straight from the actual stumps that Lisa finds, inks up, and prints from! They’re gorgeous and have a place in most decorating styles, adding subtle interest.
  • Black Mud Cloth Pillow from Mae Woven
    I’ve shared these before, because I’m obessesed and thing they look good just about everywhere. My sister runs this darling shop and has such a great design eye as she curates handmade goods.
  • Caramel Leather Clutch handmade by me in collaboration with The Crafter’s Box
    This clutch is soft and beautiful full grain leather, created with love and designed specifically for my leather working box with The Crafter’s Box that went live last year. Not only is this clutch a beautiful gift, but I love the idea of giving a membership to The Crafter’s Box to a creative friend for the holidays.
  • Marble and Gold Lamp from World Market
    This minimal desk lamp has been one of my very favorite simple additions to my bedroom makeover. It’s heavy, quality, and gorgeous. I have it tucked on a side table, but could see it on a shelf, bedside table, or even a mantel. Kind of a perfect home decor gift when you don’t know what to give.
  • My favorite book Essentialism 
    This book sits on my bedside table for reference when I need something to remind me what I’m trying to focus on or accomplish in my life. It’s a wonderful, easy to read and understand book about minimizing your responsibilities to only the things that really matter most to you. I think everyone and anyone would benefit from reading it.
  • Finally, a potted succulent because I’m an obsessed plant lady

My total giveaway is valued over $200 and will bring serious happiness to the lucky winner, in more ways than one!

Below are the 30 gifts from 30 friends. I just love to see new things, or be reminded about something I had forgotten. Each of them can make great gifts for your loved ones. To see each gift up closer, and to enter to win, you must HOP to each site to fill out the entry forms. It’s possible you could win more than ONE!

Check out the 30 gift collage below

  1. Scroll to the bottom of this post to enter to win MY gift giveaway
  2. HOP to all of the other sites to enter to win their gifts
  3. Look around and enjoy the sites of the other creative bloggers–they will not disappoint!
  4. *Note- if you receive an error message w hen you HOP, click to the blog’s home page, then it should be the top post (some times there are glitches on day 1)

Behold, the collage of goodies:

favorite-things-giveaway-collage-gift-giving-guide

***Make sure you HOP to each site, and enter for each gift on those pages.***

The numbered images above, correspond with the numbers/blogs below

1. Capturing Joy //2. Thirty Handmade Days // 3. Bombshell Bling //4. Fun-Squared // 5. Pretty Providence //6. A Pumpkin & A Princess // 7. Just a Girl and Her Blog // 8. Yellow Bliss Road // 9. Honeybear Lane //10.All Things Thrifty

11. Dawn Nicole Designs // 12. Cupcake Diaries // 13. Your Homebased Mom // 14. Over the Big Moon // 15. Girl Loves Glam // 16. Landeelu // 17. Eighteen25 //18. Becky Higgins // 19. The Pinning Mama // 20.Tatertots & Jello

21. The Idea Room // 22. C.R.A.F.T. // 23. A Girl and a Glue Gun // 24. One Little Minute // 25. My Name is Snickerdoodle // 26. Lolly Jane // 27. My Sisters Suitcase // 28. Lil Luna // 29. I Heart Naptime // 30. One Crazy House

 

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Home Equity and Home Improvement

Anderson Abode - One Little Minute Blog-26 Home is this cozy place that we can build, decorate, and share with each other in meaningful ways. As an adult owning my first home I also recognize our house as a major financial investment. I’ve partnered with Capital One Bank today to share some ideas about utilizing that investment to build additional worth into your house by tackling some upgrades and renovations using a Capital One Home Equity line of credit.
Some people assume that because we built our house it was finished completely when we moved in. In fact, we have been surprised ourselves by the quantity of projects that we’ve wanted to tackle to continue to improve it and add value to the space. Some of them I’ve been able to move forward to complete with a can of paint and some furniture. We have done several smaller projects around the house that included decorating rather than big remodeling projects. However, we are looking forward to a large landscaping project in the backyard that will require a significant investment of money and we are beginning to look at options for how to make it happen.

When you’re considering remodeling or landscaping, Capital One can to help with smart tools that help you choose the right option for your individual situation. We have not yet jumped into the process ourselves, but are so grateful to be able to do the research ahead of time and feel confident as we make these big financial decisions.

When you visit CapitalOne.com/home-equity  you can get a customized rate offer and estimated amount (with no impact to your credit score, which is something I’m always considering.) You can also begin the application process right there if you’re ready to move forward.
Anderson Abode - One Little Minute Blog-16 It makes sense to me to use some of the equity we’ve built in our home to continue adding to it’s value. I think sometimes we wonder if it’s worth it to tackle those bigger projects, and using this quick calculator it become really easy to see what type of amount and rate we could work with moving forward. Decisions regarding home and finances are personal, important, and impactful on the whole family. I appreciate being able to have easy access to work them out ahead of time and build confidence in the process.
Anderson Abode - One Little Minute Blog-33 We have had such a positive home experience thus far and look forward to continuing to improve our space as we settle in further, building value both for our own family here and now and for the future.

 

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

 

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