DIY Holiday | Handmade Holiday Cards

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This is the first year that I’ve sent more than the usual harried five or six holiday cards. And somewhere along the line, I got it into my head that I wanted to make them myself. An unnecessarily meandering trip to Michaels later (ok, make that two trips to Michaels), and I was armed and ready. Now, I don’t expect you to go all in on DIY holiday cards necessarily, but I AM here to tell you that they were really easy to create, cheaper than the $15 for a four-pack options I was finding at my favorite card haunts, and they were actually a lot of fun — probably because there was glitter involved.

So if you’re feeling inspired to follow suit, here’s what you’ll need:

1 set ABCs stamps
1 gold ink stamp pad
1 bottle fine gold glitter
1 bottle gold acrylic paint
various paintbrushes
1-2 packs blank cards + envelopes
1 roll pretty crafting tape
1 black Sharpee
1 black metallic gel pen

For these cards, I simply stamped out the messages in gold, and then used a flat paintbrush to create abstract strokes of gold paint along the bottoms or edges. Immediately after applying the paint, I sprinkled gold glitter over it and carefully tapped the excess onto a disposable plate. Allow the cards to dry for an hour (or overnight) just as a precaution, and then you’re ready to personalize.

Note: I originally purchased brown paper cards + envelopes, but found that the gold was too similar to the brown in color. I ultimately wound up using off-white cards, black metallic gel pen for messages, brown envelopes, and a black Sharpee for addressing.

Finish with a stamp and seal with crafting tape, and you’re ready to mail!

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Gifts That Give Back | Global Goods Partners (2 of 2)

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Another day, another lineup of gorgeous, gift-able Global Goods Partners pieces. For this second look featuring the hand-crafted, one-of-a-kind pieces from Global Goods Partners, I wanted to let keep everything nice and simple. What better than black on black to showcase a perfectly wacky neon satchel purse and delicate, hammered brass earrings?

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Gifts That Give Back | Global Goods Partners (1 of 2)

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Everyone has giving back on their minds this time of year, but, let’s be real, sometimes those socially conscious gifts tend to fall by the wayside in favor of a good sale price. BUT when the gift-able options are as lovely and well-crafted and affordable as the ones I’m sharing in today’s post, then it truly is a no-brainer.

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ThirdLove | These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

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I’m not sure what it is, but there’s something I kind of love about getting to wear a really pretty bra under an oversized sweater. No one knows, but you get to feel extra girly all day while you go about your over-bundled business of running errands and last-minute holiday gift buying. My new favorite for this ultimate pair-up? ThirdLove.

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Recipe | St. Lucia Buns (Swedish Saffron Christmas Buns)

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Ok, so this recipe might seem totally random. See, my birthday is this Saturday, the 13th, and for the longest time I’ve wanted to try making Saint Lucia buns. Saint Lucia Day is a Swedish holiday that occurs on the 13th of December every year, and according to my sleuthing, is a celebration of hope and light in the long, dark Swedish winters. When I was little, my mom told me about Saint Lucia and how it coincided with my birthday, and it has always held a weird little place in my memory — even though I’m pretty sure I have little to no Swedish blood.

SO, I’ve been wanting to try making these gorgeous little buns for a while now, and this is me finally getting around to it — actually in advance of my birthday, which is a first for the serial procrastinator. They’re a bit of work, but for a yeasted recipe, they’re actually pretty straightforward, and they’re a total showstopper as far as presentation.

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WDC Gift Guides! | Gift Ideas for Brothers & Boyfriends

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Nowww for one of the tougher ones — at least for me.

BUT, I can honestly say tracking down finds for my brother and boyfriend this year hasn’t actually been as bad as usual. And that’s probably due to a few key shops that are doing an amazing job of curating must more exciting items than the usual sweaters + socks routine.

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WDC Gift Guides! | Gift Ideas for Sisters & Girlfriends

Alrighty, now that Thanksgiving is over, it’s time to dive back into GIFT GUIDES!

Perhaps one of my favorite gifts to pick out each year is whatever I get for my sister. Probably because we have very similar taste and I can just basically pick out things I love and give them to her — aka everything in today’s post. We’ll get to the tougher finds later — don’t even get me started about gift ideas for dads. For now, the easy one, gift ideas for girls — the sister, the sister-in-law, the girlfriend (for the very few gents that might be reading this), the friends. Pretty much any female on your list, see below:

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Recipe | Spicy Crab Chowder with Sriracha Popcorn

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You might think this combo sounds totally weird. SOUP and POPCORN? Who’s this crazy, you’re thinking. But I promise you, this works. It just does. And that’s probably due to the fact that spicy popcorn is now a thing, thanks to Kettle Brand. Plus, nothing beats a hearty, healthy chowder for these colder temps. Make on Sunday evening and enjoy the fruits of your efforts all week long! (And I promise, said efforts aren’t really anything more than some chopping and some stirring and some waiting.)

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The Best Black Friday Sales + Cyber Monday! (Updated)

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I’ll be straight with you. I’ve never been one to get up early on Black Friday and stake out sales at an ungodly hour. I’m too busy sleeping off the feast of the day before. HOWEVER, I am a huge fan of the best Cyber Monday sales (and how e-shopping has basically made Black Friday + Cyber Monday the same thing). Even though it’s back to the grind today (cue the waterworks), I’m definitely going to be keeping an eye on the best sales — I LOVE Cyber Monday for those bigger-ticket items, for stocking up, and for nabbing anything I’m worried will be gone by the time mid-December rolls around.

Here are all my favorite CYBER MONDAY sales — now go ahead and buy those gorgeous boots or that new iPad or that perfect gift before they’re gone!

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Recipe | Gouda Mashed Potato Pancakes + Brussels Sprouts Slaw

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I know, I know: There’s nothing better than Thanksgiving leftovers (except Thanksgiving itself, of course). But after that first round or two of reheating, you can’t tell me you’re not getting bored. Bored with doughy stuffing; bored with dried-out turkey; bored with now-cold mashed potatoes.

That’s why this recipe is so perfect! When it comes to using up Thanksgiving leftovers, this combo such a great way to use up mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts. I’ll admit: The thing that made these so tasty wasn’t actually the potatoes themselves — it was the punchy, creamy Arla Dofino Gouda cheese I stirred into them. I’ve made latkes before, but I’ve always wanted to experiment with transforming mashed potatoes in the same way. BELIEVE ME, you will want to make this for breakfast soon. As in day-after-Thanksgiving soon. As in we-have-out-of-town-guests-coming-this-weekend-and-I-might-be-making-these soon.

OH, and I almost forgot to mention the other awesome thing about this recipe: A part of this partnership with Arla Dofino, I’m GIVING AWAY an amazing breakfast prize pack:

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