As one of my Christmas presents in 2010, Jeff got me a beautiful calendar by Betsy Dunlap. The calendar is so special, with hand drawings and lettering. There are four 7×7 pieces and this weekend I finally got around to trimming them down and framing them. Some new artwork for $12.00!
Are you a fan of Ball jars? Jeff and I are crazy for them. Check out this genius idea from Cuppow. I’ll definitely be placing an order for two of them.
Just wanted to share a few shots from the holidays. I made peppermint bark and marshmallows as homemade gifts this year – and one batch wasn’t enough because a certain someone kept stealing pieces from the frig. Yum!
While we were visiting friends in Durham, North Carolina over New Years weekend, we went to an Intentional Living Community about an hour from Chapel Hill called Blue Heron Farm. Jeff and I kept checking in with each other while we were there with glances and smiles and it was clear we were both intrigued. As we toured a small portion of the 64 acres and a few of the homes on the property, we learned that the farm started about 15 years ago. The house where we had lunch was saved from being knocked down from highway development – it was purchased for $5000 and moved for $7000! Jeff and I have talked about prefab homes before but we never knew about being able to move houses. Learning about that alone made the trip worthwhile and being surrounded by like-minded people, babies, nature, food and lots of love was icing on the cake.
“True community is not simply an aggregate of people… but people which have made a commitment to communicate more authentically, more intimately, more vulnerably.” – M. Scott Peck, A Different Drum
In recent years, my family started a tradition of going to New York City for our Christmas present. For the 3rd Annual trip, my parents completely spoiled us all weekend long!
On Saturday we went to Eataly for lunch, Grand Central Station, Rockefeller Center Architectural Tour and “Top of the Rock”, Christmas Tree, dinner and a show at Caroline’s (we saw Kevin Nealon).
On Sunday, we went to the Chelsea market for a leisurely breakfast and some shopping and then to the New Museum.
We stayed at the Desmond Tutu Center in Chelsea – which I highly recommend. This was my sixth time (or more?) staying there and I really love the rooms, staff and location.
[Thanks to A Cup of Jo for great suggestions!]
I live in a small row home in South Philadelphia. When we moved from a brownstone in Center City (with high ceilings) to this house, we had to get rid of a lot of our furniture because it was just too big. Do you find shopping for small furniture really difficult? Many of our new pieces are from thrift stores because I can’t find any new furniture that isn’t for McMansions.
So I was looking for a piece of furniture for our dining room that would provide more storage to hold serving trays, vases, silverware and hide our speakers for our stereo. One day I got a photo text from Jeff who was out thirfting. He found this:
After taking some measurements, we discovered that it would fit perfectly in the spot we had in mind. The thrifting gods, as our friend Leya would say, were on our side! With a little TLC, it came together just as I had envisioned.
Here are the project details:
Cost: $50 for cabinet at thrift store, $25 in paint
1. I used a palm sander (120 grit sandpaper) to rough up the entire piece.
2. I wiped down the pieces and painted one coat.
3. I let the first coat dry for a week and then sanded it again using 220 grit sandpaper.
4. I gave the entire piece a couple more coats of yellow paint.
5. I spray painted the hardware using a black textured paint.
(I still need to get some knobs and pulls and I’m thinking about these from Anthropologie.)
I also want to point out that I won a fabulous fall craft through Stephanie’s blog, which I’ve had hanging for weeks (I actually received it on my birthday!). Isn’t it so subtle yet festive? She hand-cut each piece! Thank you again, Stephanie!
What’s happening in your kitchen this week?
Are you hosting or making a dessert to bring to a friends house? My parents have hosted since I can remember and one of my favorite memories is watching my dad carve the turkey in the kitchen, sneaking a few pieces of dark meat and passing some onto the begging dog. This year I’m looking forward to gathering around with 25 of my family members to eat, laugh, and play games.
This week I am making a triple batch of this, which has become a tradition. Roasting a big, beautiful, purple cauliflower picked up at the farmers market on Sunday. Baking bread, making vegetable stock, pie dough, and these caramels.
With everything going on in the world today, I have an especially grateful heart for the foundational things in my life:
- My partnership with Jeff
- My family (Hugo included!)
- The happy, healthy and organic turkey that I can afford to buy from a local farmer (and access to this kind of food)
- My community in South Philadelphia and the great people I have met over the past few years who look out for my house and my family
- My job that has allowed me to provide for my family through this troubling economic time
- My friends, new and old.
Have a very happy Thanksgiving!
I’m a little rusty, but I hope you enjoy. This was fun.
Music credit: Lord Huron, The Stranger
How was your weekend? We went to Baltimore to visit my family and had a blast with my adorable cousins, Cole and Abigail.
After several emails with links of recipes and craft ideas, me and my Aunt Rachel came up with a game plan (she is my kind of gal!) We settled on sun prints, a butternut squash lasagna and an upside down pear cake. Perfect for a mid-November weekend, don’t you think?
At the last minute, Cole left me a voicemail asking if we could bring Hugo. We had planned for him to stay with my mother-in-law but after the cutest request, we said of course we can bring him! They became fast friends.