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Countertop Review

This time last year I was packing up our house to prepare for our down-to-the-studs renovation in our kitchen, family room, and master bath as well as the addition of a screened porch. The family room wasn't originally part of the plan, but that's a post for another time. The kitchen was where I really had to plan and scheme, and, yes even fret, to stay in our footprint and budget and to get the function and look I wanted. I love a challenge like this, though, so despite some occasional frustration with my client (aka me! ), I enjoyed the process. A key "want" of mine was honed marble countertops. There are dozens--maybe hundreds--of blog posts, articles, and showroom sites that compare various types of countertop materials and their pros and cons. I read most of them and took notes from a lot of them in the months leading up to our start date. One of the most helpful things was visiting a sweet friend's kitchen, where I was able to ask questions about cleaning, a

Settled in for Our Long Winter’s Nap

A few years ago, a Dear Friend gave the T&C family a gift that continues to bring us warmth and comfort each Christmas season.  Handmade pillowcases!
IMG_2881Sewn from fun winter print flannel, these pillowcases make their appearance the first of December.  Even though Big, Middle, and Little are hardly small children anymore, they are still eager to put their “Christmas pillowcases” on their beds.
If you sew, I think these would be a great gift for someone on your list, or perhaps for your own family.  I love ours, in part for their simplicity—they’re easy to launder and they’re easy to store.  They make for an uncomplicated tradition—just jump in bed and let the visions of sugarplums begin.  Of course, the main reason I love them is because they remind me of my Dear Friend and the many happy times we’ve had as well as the prayers we have said for one another through the years.
I’d love to hear about your simplest holiday traditions.  In the meantime, sweet dreams!


  1. I love these! I have Christmas pillowcases but never remember to put them on the beds *sigh* maybe when little one if older I will have more control over things lol

  2. Oh, these are so cozy and lovely. (I wish I could sew!) What a sweet reminder of your friend...In our house we read from Dickens, make egg nog, and bake, bake, bake. It really is the simple things that conjure up the sugar plums!


  3. I love these and your Christmas time tradition. What s thoughtful gift. We are still doing elf on the shelf with our youngest who just turned 11. Even though i know she doesn't believe in him anymore, she still pretends so we can play the game of finding him each morning.

  4. What a GREAT gift. You are so lucky to have a special friend. This time of year is FILLED with simple family traditions for us....going to see our town tree lit and being able to walk around our town until midnight that night is a must. Another, is we make hot chocolate and put in a thermos with paper cups and whipped cream, dress in our pj's and drive around to see all the houses lit up. At 21, my oldest requested some Baily's this year!! I probably should do a post on this sometime!


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