I don’t know about you, but this has been one of those non-stop weeks when it feels like everything and nothing was accomplished. Much to do, so little time to do it in. It’s making me tense.

Between the weekend’s gift-packaging, baking, and travel prep, the plan is to slow down. More importantly, let the spirit of the season sink in — something that, after all these years living in southern climates, I still find incredibly difficult when the skies are punctuated with pelicans, the marsh grass and occasional palm tree sway with warm breezes, and the chance for snow is slim to none. I really do hate to admit something so silly.

Nevertheless, it’s absolutely beautiful here and, soon enough, we’ll be surrounded by family and snow in the Midwest.

Sound Inlet

So, in an effort to feel festive, we’ll put on the classic carols, catch up on Advent, maybe even carve out a couple hours to sit still and watch a Christmas movie with over-sized mugs of dark peppermint cocoa. Cocoa always helps.

How about you? Anything exciting going on, or are you, too, beginning to feel the frenzy and need to recharge? Whatever the plan, aim to slow down for at least five minutes and remind yourself why this time of year is so special.

Cheers and Mug clinks, Heather

As always, read on for a little link-loving.

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Some interesting, fun, delicious reads:

  • Today is National Wreaths Across America Day, when we pause for a moment during the busy holiday season to honor our nation’s service men, women, and their families. Wreaths are laid at headstones of those lost in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and in national cemeteries on foreign soil. Learn more about this special day, and how you and your family can support the cause.
  • This can be an especially challenging time of the year for some. Gatherings of friends, coworkers and family abound, and often it seems that everyone’s a critic… including ourselves. Remember these, and take a deep breath.
  • Rules for pluralizing last names. Grammar is important, especially when sharing holiday cards with your in-laws, your boss, or that one nit-picking friend or coworker we all have. (Is it me?)
  • Baking in your future. Should the horror of an egg shortage come to pass, or your list include individuals who can’t tolerate or choose not to eat eggs, consult this handy guide for egg substitutions. It’s egg-cellent. Nailed it.
  • If you can hold out until Thursday, this long list of shops is offering free shipping on all orders — with delivery by Christmas Eve.
  • Switching it up from a quote to beautiful wintry artwork and photography in advance of our visit home to Wisconsin!

A few things from HGN:

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p.s. I love hearing from you! Check back if you ask a question, because I’ll answer it here.

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