Gifts For The Home Cook

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If you have a loved one that loves to cook I’m here to make Christmas shopping easier. You can’t go wrong with any of these gifts for the home cook.

Gifts for Mom
I love to cook. I love to entertain. I love to put on a beautiful, bountiful spread of home cooked goodness – even though my myriad of food allergies has made it more challenging to do so.

The funny thing is, I’m not one to invest in items that make the job easier. That’s why I’m thankful that every Christmas my husband gets me something, okay a few somethings, for entertaining.

If you have a home cook in your life, consider getting them a few of these handy items this Christmas.

The Basics

Cookikng Gifts

Whether you’re loved one can whip up a souffle with their eyes closed, or are just embarking on their home cook journey, they need these kitchen basics!

Accessorizing The Mixer

Gifts for the home cook

To extend the sparkle and shine of a KitchenAid Mixer, or to simply keep dust out of clean mixing bowls, get a pretty and functional cloth cover.

Or if your loved one prefers to show off their mixer, let their personality shine with mixer decals. These are an inexpensive way to dress up a kitchen tool while bringing a pop of color to the kitchen.

If your favorite cook is a bit…messy in the kitchen, they may appreciate the splatter guard and pour shield.

Entertaining

Christmas Gifts For Cooks

These mostly inexpensive items make entertaining so easy, and add a little class to your gatherings.

Cookbooks

Best Cookbooks

I’m credited with being a good cook. But I didn’t start that way. I started following recipes, which led to tweaking recipes, which led to the ability to make up my own successful recipes. When I was first starting out the classic Betty Crocker Cookbook was such a blessing!

As I grew into different styles of cooking, I discovered the Dillard House Cookbook – southern cooking at its fattening best. Yum!

As my family grew I needed easy recipes for a crowd. The Southern Living Slow Cooker Cookbook and Cooking From Quilt Country helped with that.

And of course, my cookbook collection wouldn’t be complete without favorites from Food Network cooks like:

These items are sure to bless your home cook! They will make cooking and entertaining easier and even more stylish. What gifts have you bought for your home cook? What do they use most often?

DIY Starbucks Lighted Garland – So Wrong It’s Right

DIY Starbucks Lighted Garland

Let me preface this post by saying, I’m NOT a crafty person. I want to be. I dream of making my own Christmas wreaths and picture frames and you name it. But whenever I try, the result ends up far from the dream. And looking like something a toddler made. Actually, my toddler could probably do a better job.

So when I craft, it has to be easy. Fool-proof easy. Like, three steps max. So, if you’re craft-challenged like me you’ll love this easy, lovely, Starbucks Lighted Garland.

DIY Garland

This whole idea came about via a Facebook post. You like my blog on Facebook, right?

I had been frustrated with all the attention over the Starbucks “cup controversy” because really, it’s just one uber sensitive conservative making the rest of us conservatives look bad. Isn’t that always the way? It only takes one high-on-his-horse nut job to make the rest of us look crazy.

Of course, there are more left-wing nut jobs, but who’s counting? `\_(“,)_/’

In fact, the other day Shane and I were discussing how nice it would be if there were no Republican, Democratic and Independent parties. We should be divided as ultra-conservatives, ultra-liberals, and moderates. We moderates could rule the world and the “ultra” parties could whip themselves into regular frenzies. No harm done to the rest of us.

But I digress…

Starbucks Cup

photo credit: Starbucks / Red cup ornament

I’m sure you’ve all heard about the Starbucks cup controversy – how the Christian conservatives were offended by the fact that Starbucks coffee cups were plain red this year, and didn’t say the word Christmas. (Though it was really drama started by one malcontent.)

I was frustrated with the silliness of it. After all, Starbucks has never professed to be a Christian brand. So I facetiously commented on Facebook that I was going to decorate my Christmas tree with Starbucks cups. Wouldn’t that be pretty?

To which my friend Heather replied with a link to a post from Hey Gorgeous about DIY Dixie Cup garland and an idea took shape.

I was consumed with a need to get to Starbucks and see if they’d sell me a bunch of their Tall red cups.

Cake Pops

I promised my little ones hot cocoa and cake pops and off we went. They went for the goodies, I went for the cups (and a decaf, vanilla cappuccino with coconut milk).

With a big smile on my face I asked the cashier if he’d sell me some of the Tall cups. He said he’d be happy to give me one. To which I explained that I’d need at least 20 for a craft I wanted to do because of all the hoopla.

This is when the barista piped in and made my day. “We have sample size cups in the back you could use. Would they be too small?”

Joy!

Happiness!

Ecstasy!

I explained that size would be even better and they sent me on my very merry way with a whole sleeve of tiny red cups. I took note of the Advent calendars and Christmas blend coffee on my way out. Ahem.

Starbucks Christmas Cup

HOW TO

And here we are. A super easy, fun, pretty, craft that also makes a political statement.

  1. Acquire some of those festive red Starbucks cups (preferably sample size).
  2. Grab a string of LED Christmas lights in the color and length of your choosing.
  3. Using an Exacto knife, or something else precise, cut a small X in the bottom of each cup. Seriously, small! You can make it bigger if need be, but if you start too big the cup will slide off the light.
  4.  Carefully slip the string bulbs through the X at the bottom of the cup, so that the Starbucks cup becomes a globe for the light.
  5. Wrap them with green pine garland if you like.
  6. Sit back and admire your work.

SAFETY WARNING: Use LED lights! If you do not use LED lights DO NOT leave these plugged in for long. And, never leave them unattended! Regular lights will get HOT and could be a RISK FOR FIRE!

So, what do you think? Do you likey?

 

All The Things

A lot of friends have noticed I’ve taken a step back from social media and blogging lately. Some have emailed concern, others encouragement, and I give the same response…sometimes life just gets crazy and you‘ve gotta put first things first. Ya know?  It’s been one of those seasons here.

Busy. Crazy. Good. And social media had to take the back seat.

There has been so much going on here in the Pitt household, I wanted to take a moment to fill in y’all on all the happenings. Because first and foremost, you are my people 🙂 . I appreciate that you read my blog, and subscribe. And, as it’s been since the start, this is where I share me. Not just the latest and greatest products I’ve found.

So what’s been going on?

2:1 PLANNING

2:1 Conference

Even though I haven’t been on social media that much. I’m still busy working! The 2:1 Conference is less than 45 days away and I truly believe this is going to be our best year yet! The speakers, the attendees, the message…I get goose bumps thinking of it.

Seriously, you need to come to this event. It’s life changing and blog changing. And I don’t say that lightly.

NEW BUSINESSES

 

Last year, I started a new security business. I know that sounds crazy and straight out of left field, but I assure you it’s not, No really! My husband has been in this business for 20 years and I’ve learned a lot just from conversation and observation.

And because, like most bloggers I’m a serial entrepreneur, when the opportunity presented itself to bootstrap my own start-up I just went for it. So, now I’m the CEO of Enterprise Security Solutions, and Shane works for me.  It’s interesting, and somewhat strange to have my husband working for me. But, the business is growing and we’re excited about the future!

TEEN MOVES

All three teens have moved out. What a whirlwind that has been! Fun, excitement, and yes, some tears.  Just so there’s no confusion in the who’s who, let me explain for my newer readers.  Shane and I have a 19 year old son, Fox (in addition to our 2 other children, Bram who is 8 and Amelie who is 3).

In addition to our children, we were given the privilege of raising my husband’s two younger brothers, Lawrence and Billy, for the past 6 years. It was an adventure I wouldn’t trade for anything, I love them like crazy and am thankful for the time we had them in our home.

However, that doesn’t mean it wasn’t without struggle. Billy struggled the most; he never really felt at home here though it wasn’t for my lack of trying. I have not and will not share online about Billy’s struggles, they are his story. However, there came a point when I no longer felt comfortable having him in our home. That’s why, when he had turned 18 and completed 11th grade, we made the painful decision to have Billy leave.

It was not a decision we came to lightly, I shed many tears. But I wholeheartedly believe Shane and I fulfilled the duty God asked of us and it was time for Billy to move on. He’s now living in Florida with his father and new step mother. I’m sure he’s loving the Florida weather!  He’s a sweet young man and I ask that you would join me in praying God would intervene in his life and show Himself mighty.

Then, there’s Lawrence who is now 19, dating an awesome Christian girl and working a full time job while living in a nearby town.  He moved out a couple months ago. He’s ready to take the reigns of his life.  Shane and I are standing back, enjoying watching him spread his wings and start to fly.

We can’t take credit for the man he’s becoming, but it’s nice to know we played a small part.

And then there’s our son Fox.  He just moved out last weekend. He’s also dating a wonderful Christian girl (more about that below) and working a full time job while living in a nearby town.  He’s also 19 and absolutely chomping at the bit to be out on his own, and be his own man.

Again, it’s so fun to watch him spread his wings and start to soar.

WEDDING PLANNING

Fox and Justina

I think most of you know by now my son Fox is getting married this year…the weekend after 2:1.  I told the couple they could set the wedding for any weekend except the 2:1 weekend and they chose the very next weekend. For Real.

If you’ve ever planned a large event, or a wedding, you can imagine how busy we’ve been LOL.  But it’s all good.  Things were coming together nicely, but then there were….some changes (see below). So now, they’re considering just saving money and going to the Justice of the Peace.

CALL ME GRANDMA!

A few months ago, I learned I’m going to be a grandma!  Yes, my son and his fiancee are expecting a baby.

After I got over the initial shock, and honestly some disappointment too (they’re still so young and unmarried), I fully accepted the excitement that a grandbaby has to offer. My daughter-in-law, Justina is due in February and something tells me they’re going to have a boy.

But I guess time will tell.  And honestly, my gender guesses are often wrong. Ha! But, you dear reader, need to brace yourself for an onslaught of upcoming grandbaby photos because I’m going to be ridiculous, I’m sure.

NEW WEBSITES

Young Grandma

As I mentioned earlier, as a blogger I’m a bit of a serial entrepreneur. When I found out I’m going to be a grandma, I couldn’t help but think that I’ll be a young grandma (I’ll be 37 when baby arrives).  And, my friend Toni of the Happy Housewife, just became a young grandma as well.

Grandmas are no longer wrinkled and clad in polyester! We’re young(ish) and vibrant. And by golly we need a website for the modern grandmother!

Thus was born Mod Granny.  My favorite designers and tech geniuses, Honey and Jonah of Honeycomb Design Studio are working on the website now. So watch for my ModGranny.com launch, coming soon.

MORE BABIES!

PittBaby2016

Last, but certainly not least, just saving the best for last…  A few weeks after I found out I was going to be a grandma, I also was surprised to learn I’m also going to be a new mother!

I’m pregnant!!! Surprised and over the moon excited!!

I’m currently 12 weeks and due March 16th. After some rough days with extreme nausea, and months of being utterly, overwhelmingly exhausted, I’m starting to feel better and my energy is returning with the second trimester.

Something tells me I’m going to have a girl, but again…you never know.

I’m due about 3 weeks after Justina. Plus, my step-sister is also expecting and due in January.  So, from January through March, it’s going to be babypalooza around here!! I’ll be using the hashtag #PittBabyWatch2016 to share updates on this little one. <3

So what do you think?  All this is a good excuse for stepping away from social media for a bit, right?