Category Archives: Holidays

Christmas 2012 – seeing through a new pair of glasses


how was your holiday?  did you get to enjoy family?  take a a book..snuggle with the kiddos?  Did you way over eat? Ack!! me too!!  I can feel the spread but I refuse to think of diet until January 1!

remember my plan for the holidays here?   it SO didn’t happen that way.  Christmas eve dawned with Nikki and I working long and hard days playing catch up due to my hospital stay over Thanksgiving and while we have the best most grace filled understanding customers EVER..there have been a couple who no matter what excellent customer service given..were being a tad scroogy.  It threatened to ruin my Christmas..I was on the brink of  tears and a chocolate cake!

enter into the story a pair of glasses.  These glasses showed me a whole new perspective.  I was able to sort through the truth and reality separating it from the lies and emotions.  The old pair of glasses were put away for the rest of the day..and gratefully so!

and for these recovering people pleasers it was making Nikki and I literally sick.  With that being said, we got 6 more orders shipped on Christmas Eve before the 5pm closing time… ( insert big ol happy dance here ) and took the remainder of the day off to go spend the night at my sisters house with my family!  We also decided to take Christmas Day off and just forget about business for one day.  It went waaay to fast but it was pure heaven–

We took long naps…ate pot chili…watched Netflix..pinned on Pinterest..and INSTAgrammed…

My grand babies came up on Sunday and we celebrated with our favorite local BBQ place openëd some presents and made some reindeer food before packing them up to go to their granny and pappy’s for Christmas.

my point?  it is good to have a ”plan” but know that life has a way of handing us lemons but it really is my choice as to whether I make lemonade or not.  I can control responses my choices..but I cannot control other people and their responses or reactions. Any more than I can control getting sick.   Nothing is worth our health or letting something or someone ruin a holiday or any day for that matter.

and that is really a place of power isn’t it?  knowing we can control ourselves and rise above circumstances all by changing what we are seeing through.

oh and yes…we will have all orders out by December 31 and we will be ready to start the new year fresh and just in case…I have my other pair of glasses.




I forgot to tell you about our planked walls!

dark ~depressing ~ dirty
my 3 adjectives that described this room when we moved in a year ago last month

last Christmas we had painted the walls and it looked like this


a little paint, ripping up the carpet and our most recent project

::: planking the walls on either side of the fireplace :::

 completely changed the vibe of the room

and we didn’t even fill the nail holes!
we painted the planks Benjamin Moore’s Whispering Spring

in which I TOTALLY stalked Ashley and stole the color from one of her favorite’s…couldn’t help myself
and you would do the same thing!  she has a happy home!!  and I love her…and her home:)
isn’t it amazing what little projects .. over time .. can do to change the heart of a home?


what little projects do you
lurking around in your heard?

have you planked any walls?
I love it so much I am going to do my whole bedroom!

you can click here here and here for planking tutorials
and remember…a little bit at a time makes a big difference a year later!!

oh..don’t forget to follow along with us on INSTAGRAM as we connect the sacred in heart ~ home and handmade


the most wonderful blend of butterscotchy chocolately crunchy goodness

my mom and all the sisters are getting together Saturday to bake cookies and just hang out.
this is one of the recipe’s I am taking and it was a total accident but it ended up being my son in law’s favorite cookie hence its name. 

Quite an unexpected surprise was this recipe.  

Here is how it went down… – I have had our families Butterscotch Cookie Recipe that is one of our go to favorites along with our Pumpkin Brownie’s   SO…instead of making 3 different recipe’s I made one and dumped all the other ingredients ( butterscotch morselsGhirardelli white chocolate morsels and Trader Joe’s Honey Wheat Pretzel Sticks  in for good measure and out came


the most wonderful blend of butterscotchy chocolately crunchy goodness.

WARNING - these cookies will seriously bribe any man to work. SO - if you have some honey do’s  I would suggest you bake a batch..NOW:)
if you have a favorite cookie swap recipe I would LOVE to have it

::: SON in LAW Cookies :::

3/4 C. butter – softened
3/4 C. granulated sugar
3/4 C. light packed brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla - preferably real
1 1/4 C all purpose flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. salt
3 C. quick oats
3/4 C. butterscotch morsels
3/4 C. ghirardelli white chocolate morsels
3/4 C. Trader Joe’s Honey Whole Wheat Pretzels - coarsely chopped


Heat oven to 375.  Beat butter and both sugars until creamy.
add eggs and vanilla and beat well
Combine flour, soda, salt &  cinnamon;
gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture
then stir in chips and oats – then mix

Take heaping tsp. and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper
or silpat:)
I flattened the dough balls out a tad
bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden..i cook less for a more soft cookie
The recipe makes 4 dozen but I got 2 1/2 because I make mine bigger.

oh…i forgot to mention these are calorie free….;)


hey – don’t forget to follow us on INSTAGRAM at

please go visit Thistlewood Farm and all the amazing recipes linked up…we need all the help we can get this time of year right?:)




O Come all Ye Faithful Home Tour 2012 + Shop News

hey everyone…hope your weekend was good?  what did you do with your one wild and crazy weekend?  do tell…
pictures first….then words

::::House of Belonging Shop News 2013 ::::

we are deliriously happy to share two of our new signs.  we are seeking to carve out our own niche in a  huge sign market.
after working at Restoration Emporium this year and being introduced to Annie Sloan Chalk paint in our furniture refinishing we
have begun using it on our signs and LOVE it! sweet entrepreneurial friend has a amazing ascp store.
i am a color outside the lines kinda girl and anything that lets the user to work in an independent, intuitive and creative way–we are all in:) 

i will do an in depth post sometime this week on our 2013 shop..the new signs. we have a whole new vision for the coming year.  boy do i need it right about now too:)  each sign has a story and i can’t wait to share it with you all.  we have some really amazing signs coming.  God has been so faithful but first we are working long and hard getting signs out to our sweet customers:)


 we would love to have you follow us on INSTAGRAM @ houseofbelonging to see shop sneak peeks and our daily life as we live out the sacred connections between heart home and handmade…

just the beginning of all sorts of wonderfully fun changes for our little house coming your way:)
praying this week we realize we can’t do everything perfect..we can’t kill ourselves doing too much…praying we choose what we love the best about the holidays..let those things remain and everything else can fall away…and may we give grace to other women..other momma’s if their stories are different than ours…xotiff and this post comes with a big hug gosh darn:)

so come peruse all the beautiful homes over at Jen’s today..



O Come all Ye Faithful Mantle 2012 – take 1

being sick has really slowed life around here but we did manage to get the bones of our mantle up over this last week.
we still have to put the glitter letters on the stockings, tweeking the mantle and finishing preparing our home to embrace the coming season.  I am having the kids stay home this weekend and help me get it all wrapped up before our family get together’s.  I am practicing using a new set of “glasses” to see all of this as a gift..trying to not let all of the stress undo me causing me to be a scrooge…it will all get done just as it is meant to be and i want to enjoy it all to boot!  I really am excited to share it all with you.

Our inspiration this year were the words O Come from the song O Come All Ye Faithful..
there is something about the invitation that gets me..and faithful? me? not hardly
but stillcome

yes you…me…just as we are
no try harders..and yes with all the broken messiness just COME

a song about adoring a baby king

in flesh appearing

we will have a full post up over the weekend with all of our O Come all Ye Faithful decor…see ya then!

do you have an inspiration word or theme you used this year?


The Lettered Cottage