One of the things I learned in the process of writing this book is that it takes a village to make it all happen.

No author is an island.

There are editors and copy editors and a marketing team and a PR specialists and publicists and people who check to make sure you’ve turned in every last exclamation point.

It’s awe-inspiring and humbling and amazing to watch.

Especially when your village is brilliant.

Recently I went to Chicago to meet everyone I’ve talked to on the phone a zillion times in person and spend a few days planning the book launch.

I brought along my suitcase and amazing earrings and my red lipstick and my hopes and my dreams and my enthusiasm and my heart…

….and a little thank you.

I asked my sister to paint a little gift for each of the members on the team.

It’s painted on reclaimed wood that’s lived a life most would envy leaving behind a little character, a little heart and a little quirkiness in every line,

She distressed the piece after she painted a thistle with the name of the publisher and the longitude and latitude coordinates.

The place on the map that my village calls home.

I handed the gifts out at dinner with a  little speech prepared that didn’t come out exactly right and scored extra points in the awkward department.  I couldn’t help it.  I was just so grateful and I got a little overwhelmed and didn’t say exactly what I wanted to say in exactly the right way.


So in case they were listening or in case they happened to read the blog or in case they happened to stop by….

….I wanted to say thank you without the awkward part.

I wanted to say thank you to each and every one of them.

Thank you for believing in me.

Thank you for taking a chance on a random girl and her stories living in a farmhouse in Kentucky.

Thank you for laughing and crying and cheering and encouraging me through every paragraph.

Every page.

Every exclamation point.

Every story.

Every word.

Thank you for being the wonderful, amazing, incredible village that you that you are.

With love from Thistlewood. 🙂

And now for a few projects from some of my favorite friends:

Easter Table Ideas


Happy Easter Printable

On Sutton Place

Simple DIY Spring Project

Cedar Hill Farmhouse

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Marisa Franca @ All Our Way Marisa Franca @ All Our Way

    At dinner did you wave your arms as you talked? When I get nervous I think everything moves. Well, to be honest even when I'm not nervous my hands and arms have a life of their own. Those gifts are so sweet! What a wonderful thoughtful thing for you AND you sister to do. I can't wait for your book. The minute it comes out I'm going to buy it and hibernate until I go through every page! I'll be sure to take a full box of tissue - I'm sure I'll need it whether I'm laughing so hard tears come to my eyes or I'm so emotionally moved I'm crying. Have a wonderful day -- are you watching basketball today??

  2. Image for Teresa Gonzales Teresa Gonzales

    I'm sure they understood everything you were trying to say! Your thank you gifts are beautiful and so you! Rock on Karianne!!

  3. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    Aw, that is a sweet gift and I bet they loved it! And who cares if your emotions overwhelmed you and you didn't say things as planned? I'm sure it was heartfelt and perfectly you. I'm so excited for you! I can't wait for your book! Shine on, rock star! Hugs, Cecilia

  4. Image for Linda Pinion Linda Pinion

    Sounds like all that was missing was your "cape"! You know the one...the super, wonder woman cape! The one you wear when you are flying through the house on a mission to create something. You are simply amazing! You are you and such a special gift to all of us. Have a wonderful day. Now go create something!

  5. Image for Nancy @ Slightly Coastal Nancy @ Slightly Coastal

    How sweet. So inspiring. Your whole journey is amazing to watch and should make us all pause and think about what great things may be in store for our futures too. If a creative, funny, and talented gal from Kentucky can publish a book, what can a retired accountant from California do? Or, a stay at home mom in Milwaukee? Or, a teacher living in a little coastal cottage on a Florida island? You, my friend, are so inspiring in so many ways. Nancy

  6. Image for NormaJean NormaJean

    Karieanne, I'm so excited for you! You have a amazing gifts and are reaping the rewards of hard work and persistence. May God continue to bless you as you bless others with the multitude of talents he has given you. I am so proud of you!!

  7. Image for Sarah @ Tomfo Sarah @ Tomfo

    Oh, congrats beautiful girl, I can't wait to read your wonderful book. We have a Tyndale right here where I live in OZ, I drive past it every day. I am super happy and excited for you arrow girl! Incase no one has told you already today... you are AWESOME! xx

  8. Image for Sue Sue

    KariAnne, you are amazing! I love every word you write! And you are just you. That is why we all love you. Perfect even in your "so called" awkward moments! I cannot wait to get ahold of your book!

  9. Image for Michelle Michelle

    What lovely gifts, thoughtful gifts and how sweet of your sister to make them for you! Everyone has awkward moments when they can't put into words exactly what blooms in their hearts. And sometimes there are no words. But I'm sure you were gracious and I'm sure they understood. At this moment, I can't find the words to express just how happy I am for you that this is happening now! The first time it didn't happen must feel like a distant memory. I told you it was their loss. I can't wait to read your book, Karianne! Happy, happy, happy day, girlfriend!

  10. Image for Bonnie Schulte Bonnie Schulte

    Congratulations...I can't wait to buy your book, I know it will be you all the way, and that's what we love about your blog. Being you!!! (especially the red lipstick, grin)

  11. Image for Stephanie Stephanie

    You are just darlin sweet girl! So very proud of you for being you always and being brave by my goodness writing a book! Can't wait to read it! Hope to see you if you are in my neck of the woods! Cheer on those cats!!! Go big blue!???

  12. Image for Merri Jo Merri Jo

    Kari, I am so looking forward to reading your book! I live in Wheaton, IL, about 5 minutes from Tyndale, and I have several friends on staff there, too. Now I have to ask them if they got to meet the "famous blogger from KY, named Kari"!! Blessings to you, sweet lady.

  13. Image for Leslie Watkins Leslie Watkins

    How very perfect. And, my friend, you would endear us all even in awkwardness. Can't wait to get this book! So very proud of you..

  14. Image for Rosalie McCreary Rosalie McCreary

    Congratulations Karianne! I'm sure the group got your grateful and heartfelt message! The gifts were so very cool! Looking forward to reading your book! Please let everyone know the publishing date! Have a great weekend and Happy St. Patrick's Day to you and your family!

  15. Image for Rebecca Rebecca

    Thank you so much for your honesty! I would probably be gloating over a huge goal accomplished...but you were thinking of recognizing others. Very altruistic! (I think that's the word I'm looking for!) Anyway, I can hardly wait to read the book and see all the beautiful pictures. Thank you for your coordination and hard work in making it happen!


    KariAnne, what a wonderful person you are! You are always putting others first. How this world needs more people like you! What a unique and lovely gift you took for each one. Just so nice! You are truly one in a million and we are blessed by knowing you -- through your posts! I hope that one day we will get down your way and be able to meet over a cup of coffee! Have a wonderful weekend! Blessings, dear friend!

  17. Image for Rebecca Turner Rebecca Turner

    Bless your heart, KariAnne! (We say that in Texas, as you must know, wink, wink.) As for me, I'm usually better on the written page. Oftentimes, I can't think of the words that I want when I want them, while speaking. So you're not the only one that gets a little flustered. I'm looking forward to your upcoming book, which I know will be clever and humorous, and filled with good ideas. Your sweet thank-you gifts are so unique and special. I'm sure they loved them. What a sweet sis!

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