Gearing Up for Valentine’s Day!

From what I can tell, Valentine’s Day can be rather polarizing. People either observe it or are repelled by it. I celebrate it!

I get the- “it’s a Hallmark holiday” perspective. But my response to that is- God forbid you tell someone you care about them. In addition to celebrating it in the traditional sense, I love spreading to love to family and friends too. Sometimes February can be a little bleak so I use the holiday as an excuse to send a card or a small care package to hopefully make someone’s day. I’ve started shopping already because I know if will be here before I know it, and I want to be ready! Here are a few of the things I’m thinking about this year:

For the grandparents:

I like sending a small box of chocolates or some cookies along with a festive tea towel to my grandparents. Everyone can use a new tea towel (they are usually less than $20), and Crate and Barrel, Williams and Sonoma, and Paper Source have some good V-day kitchen options.

Best Girlfriends:

How about a funny card and an empowering little trinket? I love the idea of giving someone a little heart shaped ring dish, or a mug with a girl power message. A pretty journal or notepad would also be fun. Paper Source has all of the above, and West Elm has some good options too. And there’s always a little gift set from Sephora, the classic scented candle, or a festive pair of earrings. You will make her week!

Friends with young kids:

I like the idea of sending a little craft or baking mix. You can include a couple festive accessories like fun stickers or cupcake cake liners with hearts.

Mom:

Gotta cover the bases in case Dad is one of those “it’s just a Hallmark holiday” people. Once when I was in college my mom sent me a Valentine’s Day care package. It was my favorite piece of mail, maybe ever. I think I still have most of the contents (minus the candy). One of my favorite pieces was a pink, fluffy bathrobe, so I think it’s only fitting that I give my mom some V-day PJs. Plus, PJs falls into the category of “things she needs but never thinks to pick up for herself”.

Me:

Because, why not?

How are you celebrating this year?

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Housewarming Ideas

So my brother recently decided to make a move across the country. Very exciting! As soon as I got the news, I immediately thought- I need to get a fabulous housewarming gift! Frankly, I’m just fishing for reasons to shop for other people, because I’ve run out of things to shop for, for myself.

Rather than a typical bottle of wine, I try to get really useful and tasteful gifts that will compliment the new space. I thought I would share some of my ideas with the crowd. Bro- if you see something you like, let me know.

For the newbies

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

This might seem weird, but for someone who is moving to their first apartment, either right out of college, or perhaps first solo apartment or house- I’m going to recommend silverware. This is not really for the hostess housewarming party gift, but more of a thoughtful care package gift for a close friend or family member. Going from the cheapest silverware Target or Walmart has to offer to legitimate weighty silverware makes such a difference! Believe me, drop $50 on real silverware and they will thank you, and use it every single day.

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

Since we’re focusing on basics, another option that will get a lot of use is a set of melamine nesting bowls. They’re fun, colorful, and have so many uses. They can mixing bowls, prep bowls, or serving bowls. Pair them with some cooking utensils, and you’re all set! If you know you’re dealing with a baker, think about a few baking pans with some baking utensils.

For the fresh-starters

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

My brother is making a cross country move, so they focused on packing the essentials and purged a lot of the extras. I want to get something useful but also something that has some character since they probably had leave a lot of the character pieces behind. I think this set of bowls would be perfect. I think they would tie in easily with a lot of different kinds of dinnerware, and who doesn’t need some cute cereal or soup bowls?

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

I’m also thinking about embracing the theme of the new geography. Since they’ll be near a beach for the first time, what about a fresh beach set up with a beach blanket, beach chairs, and/or a beach bag. Even if they have some beach stuff already, if you go to the beach a lot, it’s nice to have extra gear on hand. You can make it a whole thing by getting a beach bag, adding a couple towels and some sunscreen.

For those who have everything

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

For friends or family who have all the house stuff they need, my solution is a cutting board. Everyone I know needs another cutting board. My mom always tells a story about an enormous cutting board that we always use at Thanksgiving and Christmas for turkeys and cookies and everything else. She received it as a housewarming gift when she and my dad hosted a cookie party at their NYC apartment about 35 years ago. Living in a tiny NYC apartment, she didn’t really “get” the gift at first, but as it turns out, it’s been a standby for 35 years and counting…

Sadie Dishes- Housewarming Ideas

This is probably a repeat from previous gift post, but personalized stationary is always a good idea. How about an address stamp with their new address? It’s both useful and extra special at the same time.

Thanksgiving Tablescape

I’m a firm believer that the Thanksgiving tablescape really adds to the day. Sure the company and food can be great, but there’s something magical about a well set table. In other news, have I mentioned that Martha Stewart is my spirit animal?

You can obviously go a few different directions with the color scheme, but my parent’s dining room has gold metallic walls, so I like to stick with warm metallics and natural tones. Here are some items I’m thinking about at the moment (not all at once, but some combination of the below). Keep in mind, I’ll be adding flowers and possibly gourds or other natural elements.

Table Linens

I’m working with a large medium stained wooden table, so I usually opt for a runner and placemats instead of a tablecloth. I crocheted a million placemats in fall colors a couple years ago, but I’m always looking for a new runner.

NateBerkusrunner

This Nate Berkus table runner from Target is my natural and metallic theme all in one!

gold-jute-table-runner

A Crate and Barrel Gold Jute table runner is both subtle and flashy at the same time.

beckett-natural-linen-table-runner

A Crate and Barrel Natural table runner would be a great backdrop for fun candle holders and is definitely seasonless.

Lighting

I like to have different levels of candles on the table. It creates a warm picturesque glow, and allows you to turn down the main lights a little bit.

cratebarrelcandle

I have been stalking these Crate and Barrel taper candle holders. They are a great modern take on taper holders.

CB2votive

A few of these little CB2 Rose Gold votive holders would be great scattered around the middle of the table.

mercury-tealights-rose-gold-o

These West Elm Mercury Glass tea lights had me at mercury glass.

Crate Hurracaine

We have a couple hurricane candle holders similar to these from Crate and Barrel, and I think they would be great with a natural colored (unscented) pillar candle, and maybe even some dried acorns or fall type things…

One More For the Road

napkinrings

I really love these horn napkin rings from West Elm.

Do you have your tablescape ready to go?