As a native New Mexican, I have always fought the great fight against dry skin. Moving to California has helped tremendously, but in the winter months the fight still lives on. In addition to dry skin, I have mild skin allergies which limit my use of most yummy smelling, mass-produced skincare products. My latest ally is this coffee and coconut oil body scrub from Pure Ella. It’s effective and it smells delicious. I have been using this body scrub a few times a week for about a month now and have nothing bad say about it. My skin feels so much healthier than before, it’s not dull or tight and no more dry patches. Plus the smell of coffee fills the shower, the perfect way to wake up. The caffeine from the coffee is supposed to be skin firming, Ella gives a good explanation for this. I haven’t really noticed, but I’d recommend it regardless.
When it’s cold it can be a little difficult to get out of the container, so I keep a spoon with it. It melts with the warmth of your hands and spreads on easily.
I’m about to run out of my first batch and I will definitely be making more. With the next round, I may add a touch of cinnamon to play with the aroma.
It’s time to change calendars and I couldn’t let the perfect Sierra Club landscapes of last year go to waste, so I made some envelopes.
old calendar pages
washi tape (optional)
I made 4×6 envelopes. I started by drawing a big 8inch by 10inch square on the back. I usually free hand the rest of this but here is a template to show you what I do.
Cut out the large rectangle. Then take 1 inch off of each side of the bottom flap and 1 inch off each side of the top flap. I also trim the top flap at this point, which are the diagonal lines I drew in.
Just add some washi tape around the edge and you’re ready to send it. I suggest using a white paint marker or metallic Sharpie for addressing darker pages.
I also used a couple pages to line envelopes I had on hand. Simply trace the envelope on the image, cut it out, slide into the envelope, and the secure it to the flap with a line of glue.
Did you get an orange in your stocking when you were growing up? I always did, right in the toe. Something to do with Santa paying someone’s dowry or my grandpa having to eat the orange “peel-n-all” during the depression or something like that. I thought these surprise balls would be a fun twist on that old tradition. They can be made big or small, I tried to keep mine close to the size of a small grapefruit (it’s supposed to be an orange after all).
several different colors of crape paper including orange
small surprises (stickers, erasers, etc.)
green construction paper
First cut the crape paper in half (HonestlyWTF suggests using crape paper sheets and cutting it into stripes but I wasn’t sure where to find that in town so I used streamers). This step was a little tedious.
Start wrapping your surprises up! I started with something round (a light-up ball) to help get the right shape. Just wrap the first surprise in crape paper until it is fully covered. Then switch colors and add another surprise. Keep wrapping and adding items until everything is inside! Make sure to use orange for the final layer.
Now that everything is all wrapped up. Use a dab of glue to secure the end. Then cut a couple small leaves from the construction paper and glue them over the end and glue the button on top of the leaves. Let it dry and it’s ready to be unwrapped!
If you wanted to tell the story behind the tradition, you could add it on strips of paper with the surprises.
Side note: Dogs don’t really like crape paper
My stocking stuffer giveaway is over and the winner was notified this morning by email. Thank you all for participating. It was quite successful and I will definitely be doing it again!
With stockings and Christmas on the brain, here are some
things I want stocking stuffer ideas for the twenty-something, creative woman you know. Perhaps you’ll see a few things you need to pass on to your own personal Santa.
For all the links and a lot more ideas check out my ever-growing pinterest boards:
For November’s Foodie Pen Pal Swap, I was so lucky to be paired up with Lindsey from Running With Whisks. She is an avid runner and healthy foodie from Ohio. She sent me a bunch of Midwestern treats and a RECIPE! I love new recipes and I must say this one is amazing. First off, here’s what she sent me:
Coffee from La Crema Coffee Company
Skyline Cincinnati-style Chili
Reese Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups
Larabar Pumpkin Pie Bar
Lipton Green Tea
Montgomery Inn Barbecue Sauce
Crystal Light Green Tea
Here are my thoughts:
The coffee was great. She sent two seasonal flavors from her favorite local coffee shop. How sweet!
I loved the Roasted Almonds! So good! She made them herself, they were just a little sweet and very cinnamony. Really prefect.
My absolute favorite thing was this recipe though. I made it for Thanksgiving and it did not disappoint!
Thanks again Lindsey! And thanks to the Lean Green Bean for setting up the swap every month! If you want to join in for January, just jump over to her page and sign up!
PS Don’t forget to sign up for my stocking stuffer giveaway! It ends on Sunday!
I’m pretty excited for Thanksgiving. We aren’t traveling this year, so I get to cook! I tried to keep it simple, hopefully it’s delicious enough to forget I skipped a few traditional favorites (sorry sweet potato casserole, maybe we’ll see you next year). Here are the recipes I’m planning to use:
Brined Turkey and Green Chile Cornbread Stuffing
1. Cranberry Orange Sauce 2. Pomegranate, Feta, Walnut Salad 3. Sauteed Green Beans with Mushrooms and Caramelized Onions 4. Spinach Mashed Potatoes
Pear Ginger Cocktails and Pumpkin Pecan Pie
I think it will work out well. The cranberry sauce and salad dressing can be made the day before (that’s tomorrow); the pie crust and filling can also be made the day before then assembled just before cooking; this just leaves 3 sides to actively make, a salad to throw together, and the turkey which will be brined and roasted in a bag so there isn’t much to do once it’s in the oven.
I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving! Don’t stress too much and never be afraid to ask for help, you won’t be the only one eating there is no reason you should be the only one cooking. Besides the best memories are made together.
P.S. photo credits belongs to the respective blogs