November 22, 2013 | by cyd
We’re one day closer to Thanksgiving and I’m telling you right now, I’m already excited. We’re actually eating at my mom’s house this year, which in and of itself is pretty awesome, because that lady is one heck of a cook. Also, she always makes vegetarian-friendly versions of all the Thanksgiving favorites for me so she earns extra awesome points for that, too. Which is not to say we’re free from the cooking entirely – B and I have been assigned a few side dishes and my mom insists I make the apple pie since my recipe is kind of stellar. Which brings us to 6 days out and today’s Thanksgiving countdown tip!
If you haven’t already started to do so, today is the day to curl up on the couch with a glass of wine after work and plan your Thanksgiving menu. Having a menu established in advance will translate into a road map that will help with all of your shopping and prep work. Don’t be afraid to delegate! If you love your sister’s mashed potatoes, put her on potato duty. If you prefer your mom’s pumpkin pie, ask her to bring one along. Once you have your menu set and the work assigned, break that menu down into a shopping list. Figure out what you need for each dish and then compare that to what you already have in the pantry. This will help you avoid those pesky last minute Thanksgiving morning runs to the market when you discover you’re short on butter or flour.
If you’re feeling ambitious, you can whip up a pretty menu to accompany your feast now that you have the meal all planned out. I love the chalkboard menu above and these printable Thanksgiving menus are pretty great, too. You can download the PDF and edit the text to suit your particular spread.
[Graphic by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion. | Photo by Sunday Suppers via A Cup of Jo.]
November 22, 2013 | by cyd
Well, friends, it’s that time again! Who’s ready for a little holiday gift guide action? Every Friday morning for the next several weeks, you’ll be able to pop by for my favorite picks for holiday gifts for everyone on your list. Today we’re kicking things off with fabulous hostess gifts! From little trinkets for the friend who invites you over for holiday cocktails to really sweet keepsakes for the family who hosts you all holiday weekend, I’ve got a whole bunch of pretty little things for your gift giving consideration. For more gift ideas throughout the season, follow me on Keep and over at Pinterest where my Holiday Gift Guide 2013 board is starting to fill up. Happy shopping!
1: Gold stripe notebook, $16 | 2: Elephant match strike, $42 | 3: Honeycomb coaster set, $34 | 4: Rhino bottle stopper, $18 | 5: Tea for one set, $38 | 6: Orange chai candle, $32 | 7: Champagne tote, $15 | 8: Geode earrings, $22 | 9: Kitchen time, $13.99 | 10: Key measuring spoons, $22.95 | 11: 2014 desk calendar, $19.95 | 12: YSL Glossy Lip Stain, $34 | 13: Colorblock luggage tag, $30 | 14: More gin please art print, $20 | 15: Gnome cookie jar, $68 | 16: Wishbone bottle opener, $14
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November 21, 2013 | by cyd
With one week to go until Thanksgiving, I’m kicking off the Thanksgiving countdown! Today and every day up until the big feast, I’ll be sharing a quick tip or two to help make your Thanksgiving celebration go off without a hitch.
With seven days to go, today is the day to buy the turkey! Keep in mind that if you’re buying a frozen turkey you’re going to need ample time for it to thaw. A general rule of thumb is to allow one day of thawing for every 4lbs of turkey. (So a 16lb turkey will generally take 4 days to thaw in the refrigerator.)
Leave the turkey in its package and place it breast side up on a tray before sliding it into the fridge. And yes! When possible your turkey should always be thawed slowly over several days in refrigerator because, simply, that’s the safest way to avoid bacteria growth during the thawing process. (I can’t stress this one enough. As the daughter of parents who own an environmental/food lab they’ve beaten me over the head with the bacteria talks enough that I feel pretty passionate about sharing it with you, too.)
So if you haven’t already, today is the day to get your bird. Or you can be like me and skip the turkey in lieu of second helpings of vegetarian-friendly stuffing. That call is totally yours!
[Graphic by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion. | Photo by White Loft Studio for Style Me Pretty Living.]
November 21, 2013 | by cyd
In case it has completely snuck up on you (like it has for me) consider this your friendly reminder – Thanksgiving is just a week away! Yeah, I know. That happened really fast, didn’t it? Which means the timing is perfect to start thinking about jazzing up your feast with a few festive little touches. Today we’re talking Thanksgiving place cards, specifically. Of the DIY variety because that’s how we roll. Why do I love place cards so much? Because it’s the easiest way to add a little something pretty to your table without having to work too hard for it. (You’re already going to be slaving over the turkey and the potatoes, why make things more complicated than they need to be?)
From pretty gilded pears to whimsical hand painted turkeys, I’ve rounded up 10 of the best DIY Thanksgiving place cards for your crafting pleasure. I promise you, all of these ideas are quick and relatively inexpensive, and I further promise you that any of these festive options will make your guests feel pretty gosh darn special. Click through for 10 DIY Thanksgiving place cards!
November 20, 2013 | by cyd
I’m having to pinch myself over this one, but ready or not holiday card time is officially here! Tis the season to dust off those awkward family photos (or your newlywed photos or photos of your dog…whatever works for you) and get ready to send them off to your nearest and dearest to spread a little holiday cheer. This year, the fine folks at Pinhole Press asked if I’d like to give their holiday cards a little test drive. I’ve been a fan of Pinhole’s great designs for a while now and couldn’t resist taking them up on the offer. Today I’m sharing a little sneak peek of my own holiday cards and an amazing discount that will get you 33% off your holiday orders from Pinhole Press now through December 2! (Which is Cyber Monday for those of you keeping track.)
After much hemming and hawing, I fell in love with these Joy cards in the Ultrathick option. They showed up while I was in Mexico last week and I was so excited to check them out when I got back. (Yes, 85° in the tropics to holiday cards in the blink of an eye. It was weird for me, too.) I can only tell you that the stock they’re printed on is really lovely and the printing is high quality, too. I’m so excited to send these out to some of The Sweetest Occasion’s biggest supporters and sponsors this year! (I’m debating whether or not I should dump a bunch of glitter in the envelopes before mailing them. What do you think?)
In addition to gorgeous photo holiday cards in some of the best designs I’ve seen, Pinhole Press also has an amazing collection of really sweet games and calendars that can all boast your favorite photos while making a pretty swell gift for someone you love. Bonus! Pinhole Press is offering The Sweetest Occasion readers a gigantic coupon code for 33% off of your holiday card order now through December 2, 2013. Just enter the code sweetest at checkout to get the goods. (Oh, and they’re offering free shipping over $75 right now, too!)
[Photos by Cyd Converse for The Sweetest Occasion. | Photo on cards by Alice G. Patterson.]
This post was sponsored by Pinhole Press. All opinions are my own. (I really love their cards!) Read more about our editorial policies.