Gift Ideas

Gifts are one of my love languages. They came in second only to “words of affirmation” when I took that assessment . I think they came in second because I just love to pick out gifts for the people I love. It sounds corny, but that’s one of my favorite parts of this time of year. I feel so happy when I find something that I think is just perfect. Shopping for gifts becomes somewhat of an exciting special mission for me. I try to pick out gifts that are really personalized to the recipient, but I do have some favorite standbys.

Today, I’m linking up with Leslie at Lambert’s Lately to share some of my favorite things to give. Some of these are things I’ve given in the past and others are ideas I had while writing this post.

1. Journals

I could write posts and posts on this subject. Chances are I’ve probably given you a journal or notebook at some point if you know me well in real life. My favorites lately are this leather one I found at Barnes and Noble and also the Martha Stewart for Staples ones.

2. Tyler Candles
I love the Tyler scent!

3. K-Cups

We love our Keurig, but k-cups can get expensive. Especially when I take coffee to work with me every morning in the winter. I thought this might be a good gift for coffee lovers coupled with coffee mugs.

4. Books
I’m that un-fun person who likes to give picture books and easy to read chapter books to my cousins’ kids. M is much more fun and picks out cool toys to give instead, but there’s something about books.

5. Scarves, costume jewelry, and small decorative items from local gift shops. I love just browsing around some of my favorite local stores because I never know what I will find.

6. Food wrapped in pretty packages.
Cookies, cheese straws, fudge, peppermint bark… Anything yummy!

7. Christmas ornaments
When we go out of town, I love to look for a new ornament for our tree and one to give to my mom. This is sort of a tradition in our family. My mom has already given me a Hallmark ornament this year that’s so cute. I can’t wait to hang it on our tree & take a photo.

What are your go to gift ideas?

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Swing, Swing, Swing!


There is nothing quite as southern as a porch swing. I could spend hours swinging and reading a good book while drinking sweet tea or a cup of coffee. Since we first built our house, I have wanted a swing for our back porch. My dream came true over the weekend thanks to my wonderful family!

My little sister Laura had the idea to buy us a swing as a gift on the anniversary of the tornado. She made it happen, and she and my brother-in-law and my parents brought us this lovely swing on Friday. M hung it for me Saturday, and I absolutely love it!

Wasn’t that a sweet, thoughtful gift? It’s one I will treasure for years. I have already daydreamed about swinging our future babies to sleep out there and swinging while watching children run around barefoot in the back yard. It will be a place for family and friends to hang out. Memories will be made!

Laura, Wes, Daddy, and Mama, thank you for one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten :)

Family Recipe Binders

Update: this is the first thing I’ve marked off my 30 before 30 list!

For Christmas this year, I gave all the ladies in mine and M’s family homemade cookbooks. I gathered favorite recipes from everyone, typed and formatted them, and stuffed them into binders. Selfishly, I loved this project because now I have a ton of new recipes to try. The more I worked on the cookbooks, the more special this project became. My aunt sent me copies of recipe cards handwritten by my dad’s mother. My Memaw passed away when I was young and not interested in cooking. Now I have some of her favorite recipes. I feel like making them will be a way for me to learn things I never knew about her. Even though she’s gone, her legacy remains thanks to memories and stories. I also got to learn recipes from M’s side of the family. It is so nice to have recipes from both our families in one place.

I made 15 binders to give away. I made each cover different so they would be unique to the recipient. This is a photo of the binder I made for my sister. I am hoping that we can add to these binders for many years. I can’t wait to cook some of these new to me recipes and share them with y’all!