Friday, November 30, 2012

Great Gift Ideas for under $50 - Cook/Baker

Happy Friday! There are gift guides galore, but we all need fresh ideas. Here are a few of mine for the person in your life who is happiest in the kitchen!!
 Create your own cookie making package or order this one from Sur La Table $39.96
 New York Times Bestseller, Smitten Kitchen, by food blogger, Deb Perelman $19.75
A crisp new apron from Martha Stewart for Macy's $14.99
Personalize it by having it monogrammed and/or fill the pockets with new wooden spoons/spatulas!
All-Clad is the best...this set will last forever, Williams-Sonoma $50
 OK...I'm obsessed with Sugar Paper. I even had to gift myself this recipe binder. $48
Personalize it by slipping in your favorite recipes!!!

Sugar and spice and everything nice....that's what gifts are made of!!!! When in doubt, follow the person's interest and then make it unique. Write a note in the cover of a cookbook and date it. Create a "season of cookies" by selecting cookie cutters for each season, adding icing colors to coordinate.

1 part basic ingredients + 1 part creative flair + 1 part personalization and you have a recipe for a fabulous and memorable gift!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Gift Giving Ideas

Good morning, all! A little bonus post this week, as I was invited one my all time favorite bloggers, Tina of The Enchanted Home, along with a number of other wonderful bloggers, to share some ideas on gifts for the holidays.

Come take a look at what I suggested and get some great ideas if you're still on the look out for friends and family!

Here's a hint!
Have a beautiful day!!

images: Carolyne Roehm

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Time Flies

Where has the time gone? I can not believe we are about to slide into December. I can't seem to catch my breath, must less contemplate 2013.

Luckily I have this raspberry colored calendar ready to grace my desk in Janurary. Here are a few others you might want to give as a holiday gift or for yourself.

It really doesn't matter how you count the days....only that you make them count!!

Monday, November 26, 2012

It's Beginning To Look

 ...a lot like Christmas!!! I have tossed the pumpkins and the scent of Christmas is in our home. We won't get our tree for another 2 weeks, but the decorations are starting to appear and I'll admit...the stockings are already hung by the chimney, with care!

Like all of you, I've been busy with houseguests, Thanksgiving and holiday today I thought I'd share a peek at what I've seen along the way.

Beautiful arrangements with berries and fresh apples
A simple window box arrangement in New Hampshire
Shiny holiday ornaments
I collect Santas....this one might have to grace our tree
Adore nutcrackers...yes, I collect these, too
The first holiday box of gifts, ready to ship out today. they come!
Do the holidays have you frazzled or dazzled? I'll admit....I'm a little bit of both!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Tag....You're It!

Welcome to Friday...the end of the week and the beginning of the holiday season! Congratulations if you've already started your holiday shopping....soon it will be time to wrap and TAG all of your gifts!

Here's a round up of some of my favorite holiday gift tags out there!
Watson Kennedy
So, start your shopping, next your wrapping...then,'re it! You saw that one coming, right?!

All kidding aside, I truly hope you are able to savor the holidays. Put on some music, get yourself set up in a favorite spot and then remind yourself that with each gift delivered or each card that you address, that you are reaching out and letting someone know they matter to you!

Here's to a joyful holiday season!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Counting My Blessings

Among my many blessings, I want to let you know that I count you! For stopping by, for reading, for writing a note, stopping me on the street, sending me an email. This blog began as a way to connect....and it has helped me do that in ways I never imagined.

From Seattle to Savannah....Canada to New Zealand.

As we gather with friends, family and loved ones...I want to wish each of you a wonderful Thanksgiving and a blessed beginning to the holiday season!

What are you most thankful for?

Monday, November 19, 2012

Making Merry Personalized Gifts

 I first wrote about May Designs (previously May Books) this summer, after I received one of their darling notebooks as a gift. Since then, I've been ordering them for gifts and was delighted to see they just came out with their holiday collection. Though I usually do a name or monogram, I thought it would be fun to create some seasonal books for friends....a pair of Naughty & Nice for making holiday lists.
A clean slate for those 2013 goals!!
La Plates has been a go to source for me for years, but they've added these holly, jolly ornaments this year. Deck the halls with a monogram or your choice of colors. 
I know you're probably thinking turkey this week if you're in the US, but it's never too early to order items that need a little lead time. Get online, then baste the turkey. That way you get to stay home on Black Friday...and enjoy family and leftovers!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Prepping for a Houseguest

Are you hosting house guests for Thanksgiving? My mom arrives today from Texas and this is what awaits her!!

We always have to toast with a glass of Veuve Clicquet, addig a dash of St Germain. I love my personalized tray from Dabney Lee....sometimes I use it to stack magazines, but tonight it will be the cocktail area.
And, no one....I mean, no one loves my living room as much as my Mom. Sometimes if I can't find her, I know to look in there, where she's curled up with one of my many coffee table books. I will have the fire going when she arrives. Don't you love walking into a home where there's a real fire in the fireplace?
Wishing you a cozy weekend, the last before the mad dash through the holidays. Light some candles and savor the night!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Fall Entertaining

When I lived in Charlotte, I became enamored with the Spode Woodland china pattern. Perfect for fall dinner parties and Thanksgiving, I use it exclusively from September through November.

For this dinner, I layered the earthy pattern (each plate has a different bird represented) with rattan chargers, hemstitch napkins and placemats, my Reed & Barton Francis I silver and Vagabond steak knives. I love the horn handles, especially for men.
For the centerpieces, I combined hydrangea, roses, artichokes, white pumpkins and thistles (as my street name is Thistle Lane). I always love a subtle "nod".
Every guest needs a little something to take home. For the ladies, this amazing pine candle from Patch NYC. The men got a masculine fragrance, also by Patch, with the cute fedora design.
I'll probably repeat this tablescape with some variations for Thanksgiving.

Have you been entertaining this Fall? Will you be hosting Thanksgiving? Setting the table is my favorite part!
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