It feels like only a few weeks ago that I was addressing envelopes, but here we are again. I knew that I want our Christmas cards to go out soon, so when I had some down time yesterday, I got to it. About twenty down, a hundred to go!

christmas card pile

While I’m flashing back to the wedding, I’m sure my parents are feeling that way as well. You see, the JA and I ordered a few items and had them delivered to their house. They all arrived this week and I’m sure that they are ready for me to stop by and pick up the multiple packages! (P.S. – I am loving that Target sends alerts to let you know that your package was delivered. So convenient!)

Target delivery receipt

I’ve got a lot planned for this weekend – starting with picking up festive stamps!

Have a great Friday 🙂

The Sweet Spot

Since Thanksgiving, the JA and my social calendar has been quite full. Between Black Friday shopping, brunch with friends on Sunday, movie night Tuesday, a dinner party yesterday, and a guest coming this weekend, we’re busier than we have been since the wedding!

French toast at Dogwood. So delicious.

I’ve dubbed this ‘the sweet spot.’ That time when people are free and schedules aren’t filled with shopping and holiday parties. It’s been a whirlwind (with even more craziness to come over the next month), but we’re so thankful and excited to spend the time surrounded by great friends and family.

Over and Over Again

Yesterday evening, I continued my yearly tradition of watching Love Actually with my old roommate. Even though we’re not as close as we used to be, this is something that we both strive to maintain as a connection from year to year.

While watching the movie (and chatting, of course) we talked about a lot of things, the least of which being the moments within the movie that always affect us. We decided that one of the reasons that we can watch this movie over and over again is because it seems realistic to us.

There are certain lines in this movie that make me melt. Every.time.

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There are certain scenarios that make me want to change the outcome. Every.time.

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There are even some snarkingly brilliant speeches that make me want to stand up and cheer. Every.time.

This is the first of a few times I will watch this movie over the course of the holiday season. I just can’t get enough of it!

What book/song/movie will you never tire of reading/listening to/watching?


In years past, I’ve had a love/hate relationship with chap stick. Texture is very important to me – meaning that, like Goldilocks, I need things just right in order to use them.

In my younger years, I would take the ChapStick that was gifted to me (by Mom as stocking/basket stuffers). But to me, depending on the type, it’s either too waxy or doesn’t work well. No good.

In high school, I went the flavored/fashion route – Lipsmacker. My favorite? Well, obviously the strawberry glitter. I mean, hello. I was so super cool back then.

Lipsmacker just wouldn’t do in college. (It doesn’t hold up well against the weather in central PA.) So, I went the Blistex route. It did the job, but still left something to be desired.

Finally, after much searching, my sister introduced me to Burt’s Bees. I love this stuff. So much so that I have one within five minutes of me at all times. One in the upstairs bath, one on the main level in the kitchen, and one in my purse. It’s waxy enough to feel like it’s doing something while also providing a nice, minty tingle (which I know isn’t for everybody, but I like it.)

Burt’s Bees products are 100% natural and the company is committed to making great products for its customers.

Another great stocking stuffer for the holidays!

Pssst. If you like this, check out other items in my Try It Tuesday series.

It’s Time

After recovering from Thanksgiving and Black Friday, the JA and I put on the Christmas tunes, decorated the house, pulled out our winter coats and started sipping our hot apple cider. It’s holiday time!

How do you get into the holiday spirit?

Black Friday Bug

I hope that everyone had a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving yesterday. We had a slight change in plans when the JA’s cousin gave birth on Wednesday (her mother generally hosts dinner), but everything turned out well. His parents came over to my parent’s house and we all had a grand old time!

As we were watching football, I started sifting through the Black Friday ads. In years past, I never went out for Black Friday. I thought the people were crazy and ridiculous and would do anything to save a couple bucks. (You see where this is going, don’t you?) In our homes, family reins supreme on holidays – especially this year, as the JA and I are going to be away for Christmas. Paging through, I noticed some items that I have been craving for a while now. With a little nudging from the JA, I made my first Black Friday online purchase – a digital SLR camera.

After dinner, though, we were on a roll. He picked up Target’s ad and saw that they had a decent vacuum cleaner for a very competitive price. We didn’t receive the one on our registry, so I went back online and placed it in my shopping cart. Little did I know that after browsing a bit longer, it would have vanished! Argh – so close! Dinner was complete, his parents had left, there was a Target store within 15 minutes of the house and it opened within a half-hour. Do we really need this thing that badly? Are we going to be THOSE people who support the big store that makes people work on a holiday? In short, yes. With a blessing from my parents that they wouldn’t feel slighted (Mommy Janks can’t resist a good sale), we planned our strategy. (I will not wait in line if it’s ridiculously long. We are only buying this and potentially one other thing we wanted. Make it quick and easy, no fuss.)

For those of you wondering, yes, that is a moustache on the JA’s face. We are both very excited for Movember to finish in a few days.

I could not speak more highly of the Target staff. Upon arrival, we were offered complimentary snacks, they were clear about their process and procedures, informative (we were given maps of the store’s layout in advance) and were very helpful once we were inside.

We were a little nervous after hearing that both of the two couples ahead of us had their eyes on the same items as we did, but since that cleaner was our single priority, we made a beeline for it as soon as we could and walked away with one!

Returning victorious, Daddy Janks (who is known for getting up at the wee hours of Black Friday morning) had some more ‘suggestions’ for us. Thanks to our fantastic experience earlier in the night, we pulled ourselves out of bed this morning for two more items – a firesafe box for him and a Kindle paperwhite for me.

We still have plans to snag deals on more remaining registry items today, but we’re in no rush. We’re very pleased with our inaugural Black Friday purchases and who knows? Maybe we’ll do this again next year.

Are you a Black Friday shopper? If so, what’s the purchase you’re most excited about this year?

More Power to Ya

Now that we’re beginning to settle into married life, I’m trying to find healthier alternatives to our normal meals (for example, quinoa stuffed peppers instead of rice ones, spaghetti squash instead of pasta, etc.) This extends to snacks, too.

I’ve already waxed poetic about my love for Popchips and today I wanted to introduce you to another one of my snack friends: Dark Chocolate Powerberries. Found only at Trader Joe’s these dark chocolate pieces of deliciousness are not only delectable, but pretty healthy for you as well.

Described on the package as “real fruit juice pieces made with acai, pomegranate, cranberry, and blueberry juices,” Powerberries are gluten-free and are low sodium. (Thanks for the handy dandy product key, TJ!)

Dark chocolate is known for its antioxidant qualities and when paired with the sweetness of the berries, the combination makes the perfect treat. Powerberries give that mix of bitterness and sweetness that allows one to nosh without feeling guilty.

Each 1/4-cup serving has 180 calories, 7 grams of fat, 25 grams of sugar, and 20% of your daily recommended vitamin C. An 8-ounce bag contains about 6 servings.

These would be great to place in small bowls around the house for your holiday guests, but make sure to save some for yourself!