Websites for the newly engaged

IMG_3541Christmas is the most popular time of the year to get engaged. I should know, as my husband proposed last year on Christmas Eve. The holiday season is so magical and it becomes even more special when your love pops the question.

So if you said “yes” this holiday season, here are a few of my favorite websites to get your started with the wedding planning process.

Before you delve into all these wonderful sites, however, I have an important piece of advice to share. The internet (and books and magazines in print) are full of literally millions of amazing wedding ideas. The bottom line, however, is that at the end of the day you need to choose things for your wedding that make you feel happy and are special for you and your future spouse.

Of course along with all these wonderful ideas can come lots of price tags. Don’t get too overwhelmed with all the wonderful ideas. Just find what is special for you and your wedding day is sure to be amazing!

 

Weddings Link Roundup

Here a few sites I used while wedding planning. Purchasing an actual wedding magazine was something I really planned to do, but with a scary budget already looking me in the eye, I couldn’t bring myself to shell out the $10 for the magazine.

The Knot is a good place to start. I will admit I found it a bit overwhelming though I did use it to make our wedding website.

The Broke Ass Bride is one of the cutest and most creative wedding websites I came across. I recommend the book and the website.

If you want to look at beautiful wedding pictures to start getting some ideas of what you want your wedding to look like, I recommend Style Me Pretty. 

If you’re style runs a little more to the eclectic, you’ll love The Rock and Roll Bride.

I also enjoyed The Wedding Bee. You can ask questions in the forum section and get real answers from other brides.

Getting help and advice from friends and family is really what made my wedding come together so beautifully, but the internet was a good place to start getting ideas.

Best of luck to all you new brides and grooms to be!

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Blue healers

I’m missing the ocean today so I think I was drawn to pull these stones in various calming shades of blue to be my companions today.
Blue Kyanite – Aligns all chakras.
Campitos and Indian Creek Turquoise – Turquoise offers us so much, wealth, luck, healing and protection.
Blue Tiger’s Eye – A calming stone for strength and motivation.
Azurite with Malachite – The stone of the healer priestess. Awakens inner confidence and brings healing and abundance.
Aqua Obsidian – A stone to bring comfort and strength during times of grief and letting go.

I’m dreaming of a warm Christmas

Conch shells in Key West

Oh, the weather outside in the Yadkin Valley region is lovely. And I hope it stays this way until summer. I’ve been hearing a lot of people say they can’t get in to the Christmas spirit because it’s not been cold enough. Well, bah humbug I say to that. People in Florida still celebrate the season, don’t they? And I bet they get right on into the spirit while still in their shorts and sipping on a rum runner.

As I may have mentioned, I can’t stand cold weather. Yes, snow is pretty. Yes, a lot of holiday music is all about a “White Christmas” and “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” and all of that. I get it. And, honestly, I don’t mind a pretty snow once in a while if it comes on a day I don’t have to worry about driving in it.

I’m very much still pining for my wonderful days in Key West on my honeymoon earlier this year though and so this weather suits me just fine.

I’m perfectly in the holiday spirit of the season, even if it is 70 degrees. Last week Dad and I made two of our traditional holiday treats. We made homemade Chex mix and peanut butter crackers dipped in white chocolate.

I even watched the movie “White Christmas” while we were cooking. My favorite scene actually is when they are still in Florida and going to see the Haynes sisters perform. Of course, the “Sisters” number is classic with those gorgeous blue fans, but I also love the number “The Best Things Happen While Your Dancing.”

So, if the warm temperatures are keeping you from getting in the holiday mood, I suggest watching a good Christmas movie and baking some holiday treats to help get you in the spirit.

An easy and delicious treat to make is putting peanut butter between two Ritz crackers and then dipping it in white chocolate. The combination of salty and sweet is just divine. We make these every year.

We also love homemade Chex mix. It’s easy to make as well. The Chex cereal box likely has the recipe on it this time of year, but here is my version.

Kitsey’s Crispix Mix

Ingredients
• 1 box Crispix cereal
• 1 package colored goldfish snack crackers
• 1 package garlic bagel chips, crushed
• 1 can cocktail peanuts
• 3/4 of a large bag of Rold Gold pretzels (I like a lot of pretzels, but adjust to the amount you prefer. I use the stick shaped or the heart-shaped if I can find them.
• 1 stick butter, melted
• 2 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
• 1 1/2 tsp. seasoned salt
• 3/4 tsp. garlic powder
• 1/2 tsp. onion powder

Directions
Combine all snack items into a large pan. Add Worcestershire and seasonings to melted butter and stir to combine. Slowly drizzle butter and seasoning mix over the cereal mix and stir gently with a large spoon or spatula to coat mixture well. I typically sprinkle a little additional Worcestershire and seasonings on mine at this point because I like it seasoned really well. Bake in a 250-degree oven for a total of one hour, every 15 minutes shake or stir mix to continue distributing the seasoning mix.

The grounded heart

Stones for the grounded heart.

Rhodonite (left) a stone of heart healing, forgiving ourselves and loving ourselves, a stone of accepting both the light and dark parts of our nature.
Almandine Garnet (right) a stone of grounding and connection with ancestors. Can also aid in increasing stamina and strength.
Shiva Lingam (bottom) hailing from the Narmada River in India, this stone represents the duality of both the sacred masculine and the sacred feminine. Also a stone of protection.