1. Honeycrisp Apples are in the bins at grocery stores – they are my absolute favorite. They are delicious as ia, with cheese, peanut butter, or this time of year decorated with delectable caramel. Babble hooks you up with 9 creative ideas for caramel apples.

2. These sparkly flats from Gap are calling my name. And, so is this bag with a big bow.

3. I’m adding this DIY Mirror made of Shims to my to do list, but first I’m going to make these DIY Clipboard Frames.

4. I really like Brené Brown, researcher/storyteller, who studies human connection. She studies shame, courage, worthiness and vulnerability. I first saw her on Oprah, and really liked her. She is personal, funny, real and her research is powerful and helpful. Here’s the TEDtalk that made her BIG. If you get time this weekend, watch it. I’m reading her book, Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead, right now. It’s good, ya’ll.

In the intro, she referenced a speech that Teddy Roosevelt gave in 1910. It’s so well said. In it, Roosevelt said:

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”

5. If you love lentils like me, you can stay warm this weekend with this healthy lentil soup I made this week. Delicious.

Vegetable and Lentil Soup
serves 8

3/4 of a 1 pound bag of green lentils rinsed
Boiling water
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 large leeks, chopped
1 tsp Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
1 tsp dried thyme
1 tsp ground cumin
6 celery ribs, diced
6 medium carrots, diced
2 quarts chicken stock
1 cup water
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 tablespoons dry red wine
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

How To
In a large heat-proof bowl, cover the lentils with boiling water for 15 minutes. Drain, rinse and set aside.

Heat olive oil in a large pot. Add the onions, garlic, leeks, salt, pepper, thyme and cumin and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables tender, about 20 minutes.

Add the celery and carrots and cook until they begin to soften, about 15 minutes.

Then, add the chicken stock, water, tomato paste and lentils to the pot.

Increase the heat to high, cover and bring to a boil. Uncover, reduce the heat to low, stirring occasionally, until the lentils are tender, about 1 hour.

Stir in the red wine.

Serve hot with a sprinkling of Parmesan, and croutons if you desire.

{image via Sugarboo Designs, Lavender Fields Online…we love Sugarboo!}

Corkcicle for Wine

It’s another simple, fabulous and genius invention, and its one of those things that when you see it, you say to yourself, “Why didn’t I think of that?”


The cork with an icicle attached to it that keeps wine perfectly chilled. Not too hot, and not too cold…just right! Once you drink one bottle, have another because you can re-use the Corkcicle over and over again after washing.

For businesses or brides, they offer a Corkcicles Custom line too.

As you may know, this made Oprah’s Favorite Things List this year, but I promise, it was one of our favorite things before we knew that Oprah was a fan too.

Being the vino lover that she is, Jenna has been carrying Corkcicle at Fleur de Lis, a paperie, for several months. Stop in to buy one in time for Christmas, or email her to order one.

We can tell you {and we love our vino, especially now that none of us our pregnant for the first time this year}, we’ve used it, it works and we love it.

Good news for all you Tutto Bella wine lovers…the kind folks over at Corkcicle are offering you a FREE Corkcicle Classic.

Enter here: a Rafflecopter giveaway

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook or Twitter. Winner will be contacted by email 48 hours after the giveaway ends on December 21. If you have any additional questions – feel free to send us an email!

{images via Corkcicle and Tutto Bella}