Sunday, November 8, 2015

#FindJoyinNovember: Week 1 (Plus a GIVEAWAY!)

The first week of #FindJoyinNovember has been basically a huge success, I think. There's a great group of us posting over on Instagram, a little on Twitter, more than a few on Facebook, and I've even received them via text from my cousin! Altogether, I have been inundated with the different ways to see the bright side in our days, and already November feels brighter.

Yesterday, I went to grab groceries at Publix. While waiting in line, I realized the man behind me was balancing some awkward-looking boxes of something and really only had a few items, while my cart was full. I told him to go on and go ahead of me. He chatted with me in line, and kept up a running conversation. I talked about how this is the first year Audra will actually interact with Christmas in any real way, so we're going all out, and how Christmas as an adult involves a lot more worrying about how to afford it than I realized. We laughed about that, and talked about his three kids and how much fun -they- have, being older kids.

What I didn't realize was that his conversation was an attempt to distract me (a successful one, I might add).

He bought me a forty dollar Publix gift card as a thank you!

That was a moment of real joy and gratitude, yesterday - and a reminder to remember how kind we can be to each other.

I promised to feature three photos from #FindJoyinNovember each week, but I've run into a problem. I can't possibly share just three. Instead, I've put together, well... a few more than that.

These photos off Instagram and Twitter:

These photos off of Facebook:

And this photo, sent via text message with the following description: "JOY = playing together, no adult in the same room, no blood, crying, or screaming. Life is good! Now... if they would learn to sleep in until seven!"

Obviously I seriously just could not narrow this week down to only three. We'll see what next week brings! Meanwhile, let's talk about this giveaway I promised. My friend Liz and I went together on this one, so that we could give away even more fun little gifts for you or maybe even to pass on to family members. Included is:

  • A Modern Forestry hand-poured soy candle, made right here in Greenville, SC - the scent is Christmas Orange and it's -lovely-. Just absolutely perfect.
  • A tea-towel from Vintage Home Studio, also made here in Greenville! I absolutely love these towels and already own one of my own. They're beautiful, but really are made to be used!
  • A sign made by the owner and proprietor of Mostly Made in the South, a lovely little store just off of Woodruff Road in my city (it's where I bought the first four things in this giveaway!). She makes a lot of signs like this, and I really love them, so I knew I wanted one included in this giveaway! (I've also picked up an infinity scarf from her that I really love, and she's got several super cute ones right now, including a beautiful brown-and-ivory pattern that I do a lot of wistful daydreaming about. Go check out her store!)
  • A matcha green tea soap from Tiny Home Soaps (made right down the road in Easley). These soaps are so pretty they can be "show" soaps out in the guest bathroom or keep them all for yourself. I would probably keep them for myself, I won't lie.
  • A coffee (or tea) mug that says "Hello Beauty Full" - because we all need that greeting sometimes.
  • Tea Tree Castile soap. Let me tell you, it smells amazing.
  • Two moleskine journals, for when you want to really write those positive thoughts down and start your day (or end it) on the right foot.
  • A beautiful purple photo frame, complete with a printable on the inside that says "Inspire Someone Today". 
  • A little bottle full of gift tags - perfect for Christmas presents or just any reason you feel like giving people presents (sometimes Liz just gives presents because it's Tuesday.)
  • Peppermint Stick hand cream from philosophy (not pictured, because I forgot about it until after I took the photo.) Just the right size for tossing in your purse.

Interested in winning this giant pile of great stuff? Enter the giveaway!

The winner will be chosen completely at random based on the entries, and the giveaway is open to those in the USA and Canada (sorry, everyone else! I just can't swing those kinds of shipping costs). The giveaway will run until the end of November! The winner will be chosen by random number generator on December 1st and notified that same day. The package will be mailed within three business days after I receive your shipping address. Fingers crossed, you'll have no problem getting your prize package in time for Christmas!

Here's How to Enter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Let's keep up the #FindJoyinNovember momentum! I hope to keep seeing your awesome photos on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, your blog... wherever it is your post 'em! 


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  2. I really like my wife's peppermint bark. I would give everything in the giveaway to her.

  3. I make this meat pie called Tourtière at New Years and pretty much any other time my husband requests it (which is often). It's a traditional Québécois recipe and it might be one of the greatest winter comfort foods on the planet. I'll share the recipe once I find where I typed it up! :)

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  7. I don't really have a single-favorite holiday recipe. This year my kids have requested that we have a pie tasting for Thanksgiving, so maybe we'll discover a new favorite that way?

  8. We make peanut free peanut butter cups and they are so so yummy! It's 1 small jar nut free spread, one container of frosting and melting chocolate. Mix the peanut butter substitute and frosting together. Melt the chocolate. put a table spoon of chocolate in the bottom of a paper candy liner (like a mini cup cake paper). Then a table spoon of nut free filling and top with another table spoon of chocolate. Refrigerate.

  9. Pumpkin Pie!
    This is the recipe we use and it always comes out perfect:

  10. also I loved the homemade chocolate cherry cake post in the tag. It looked delicious!

  11. You know I don't cook anything!t My favorite treat is pumpkin pie though :)

  12. I love making homemade bread! The holidays are pretty much the only time I make the time for it. Sally Lunn Batter Bread is my fave.

    1. ~heck yes

  13. My FAVORITE holiday recipes are cookies. I'll link up a couple of recipes I posted on my old blog. (Way back in 2008. So forgive the terrible photography!) :)

  14. Here's the main gingerbread recipe - with links to some of my other faves.

  15. Also, I might've accidentally clicked the commenting entries twice. Sorry!! Had this post open in two tabs somehow...

  16. I make fudge puddles. They are amazing. They are basically peanut butter cookie 'cups' made in mini muffin tins, and then you pour a little fudge sauce in each of them. So. Good.
    -Ashley :)

  17. The link to the recipe is

    I omit the nut toppings and always double the amount of batter made because there is a lot of fudge sauce once you make it.

  18. Aunt Susan's sugar cookies, of course!


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