Category Archives: Holidays

a Raggedy Ann inspired birthday party…

your a grandma? with shock and awe it comes rolling out of peoples mouths. all. the. time.
followed by

you look so young.  well when you hit your 40′s ya start to go south…but i am young at heart..a little.

i will let you in on some secrets in an upcoming post (not to be a snob) but there are things one can do to not get stuck in a time warp.

speaking of grand children –  two of the four little hoodlums (as my friend sasha calls her kiddos)

well i am saying that affectionately but they really are hoodlums..they get into everything..fight and pull hair..steal food
out of the fridge..paint nail polish on everything they can..and sneeeaky..they are the sweetest thing that ever i looked into
and their smiles make my heart smile and i can take the longest deepest breaths of their smell.
they are my grand flesh..a living part of crazy little me..and so when they asked to have their little party at my house why…i couldn’t say no.

i made them each a little sweet “heart” T….

Chelsee & her brother who is growing a Duck Dynasty beard…he is not cutting it until March!! cracks me up!!

my daughter Chelsee…momma to my 4 grandbabies and the two hoodlums;)

auntie Nikki & miss K

auntie Grace & miss Khloey

thier momma wanted to do a raggedy ann party and she began with their names on garlands and that’s
where it stopped and we took over.  We ended up not using Raggety Ann herself .. just her colors
and being so close to Valentine’s day and all…red was everywhere.

Since it was just a small family party at our house we didn’t have anyone to impress so we didn’t get out the china.
happy birthday to my Khloey and Karalina…you are my favorite 2 & 4 year olds in the whole wide world and
you are some lucky girls to have such a young looking grandma…..wink wink

i will do a post with the recipes and such that we served next week..

Check back on MONDAY for a ginormous giveaway and some New HOUSE of BElonging news!!!
eek…double eek!!  follow us on INSTAGRAM to be the first to know about new stuff in the shop!

more on the RE-BOOT in the coming weeks too….stay TUNED!

xotiff

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a vicarious route with a pocketful of promises

I finally managed to get up early on winter break..it is 5:30 am..coffee
I think it appropriate on the last day of the year to rise early and reminisce…after all a new year brings
with it promises of new beginnings and aren’t we all in need of a few of those?

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“The secret to a rich life is to have more beginnings than endings.” – By Dave Weinbaum

as I look back I’d have to say this has been a powerful year for me.  Traveling with God over this last year has allowed me to see myself and my story thorugh a new pair of eyes. Eileen Caddy once said when you feel that you have reached the end and that you cannot go one step further, when life seems to be drained of all purpose; what a wonderful opportunity to start all over again, to turn over a new page.

you can read the some of my beginnings here here here and here

so here I am at the end of a page and the end of a powerful year and the horizon looks pregnant with possibilities.  I look out over the horizon and can only make out what appears to be many roads but this time with a new vision instead of looking at a land if full of giants…which it will be but instead choosing (key word) to focus on it as full of possibility!  expect the miracles..expect God to fulfill His part of the covenant.  EXPECT God–

a vicarious route to some essential part of herself that she does not yet fully recognize or understand yet …. Sarah Ban Breathnach “Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending.” – By Carl Bard

I am learning through a daily practice of slowing my heart down to really listen–then talk with God.  LOTS more listening than talking if you know what I mean?

I am traveling through each day with a suitcase more full of peace- a child like trust- knowing i am loved for who i am and not what i do or don’t do- a sense of belonging finally-acceptance of who i am and what i am called to do within all of my insecurities, quirks and weirdness

and

at the dawn of 2013 I possess a greater sense of vision..a pocketFULL of powerful promises and as I lay my hand over them I know they are living words and they are what will get me through the valleys that will be low and the mountains that will be high.

“Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.” – By Margaret B. Runbeck  

so if you have been feeling like life is one series of false starts….why not make this beginning of 2013 the year to get started
oh I know…everybody starts at the new year and a few weeks down the road it is back to the same ol`routine.  well…i began and quit many times but no matter how many times life knocked me down ( and I do my fair share of causing myself grief ) grace pulled me back up again.  Mark Twain has a good point–
“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret to getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks and then starting on the first one.” – By Mark Twain

“When you feel that you have reached the end and that you cannot go one step further, when life seems to be drained of all purpose; what a wonderful opportunity to start all over again, to turn over a new page.” – By Eileen Caddy

so let’s turn over a new page together–blessings and love to each of you who have taken words out of your busy day to leave here on my heart.  You have each had a part in writing my story over the last year.
while my route maybe vicarious I wouldn’t have it any other way because deep down that girl I know is becoming more and more recognizable.  I am humbly uber excited over the coming months..for the new things that are coming and that I am surrounded by some pretty amazing warrior women..I am thankful at the close of 2013.

what is ONE..just one promise that you can put in your pocket right now to take with you in 2013?

xotiff —  “A journey of a thousand miles must begin with a single step.” -A popular Chinese Proverb

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Christmas 2012 – seeing through a new pair of glasses

 

how was your holiday?  did you get to enjoy family?  take a nap..read 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 me..my 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.

 

 

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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

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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:)
anyhoo
isn’t it amazing what little projects .. over time .. can do to change the heart of a home?

QUESTION?

what little projects do you
have
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!!
xotiff

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

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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

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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….;)

xotiff

hey – don’t forget to follow us on INSTAGRAM at http://instagram.com/houseofbelonging

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?:)

 

 

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