Random thoughts on a cold Saturday morning:

1. I can’t wait to meet so many of you at the meet and greet today. I got so many messages and I want to make sure I didn’t overlook anyone. If you sent me a message and you didn’t get an invite, just e-mail me and I’ll send it your way.

2. In super sad news, we lost the second round of playoffs last night to Waco. It was a close game and we gave it everything that we had. I’m so proud of our team and our cheerleaders and our drill team and all the fans.

3. It was an amazing week on the blog. We talked about getting muddy on the road less taken and made a DIY dollar jingle bell tree and shopped for Christmas and took a blue and white Christmas tour.

4. And speaking of Christmas tour, I’m sharing a video of the Christmas decor in the house today including the tree in the dining room.

You can follow along on Instagram stories here.

5. Next week is Thanksgiving. And in super exciting news? I’m cooking.


Let me repeat that in case you missed it.


A turkey with all the fixin’s.

If you have any turkey cooking tips? Please share. Just between us, the last time I tried to cook a turkey Melrose Place was a thing.

And now?

Let’s see all the fun things I’ve found from around the internet this week.

I thought this table was so pretty.

I love her napkin rings.

See the entire table here.

Did you know you can paint a Christmas tree?

Oh, good. Me, either.

See how she painted this tree here.

This incredible tree.

And the story behind it.

You can read it here.

And don’t these look yummy for Thanksgiving breakfast?

I need these while I’m cooking my turkey.

See the recipe here.


And in random news this week:

This beautiful Christmas tour

15 crafts you can make while you travel

These hats

These beautiful printable Thanksgiving place cards

The best way to mash potatoes

This simple Christmas DIY

Sweden’s big holiday decor trend

This merry table

10 things learned during 10 years of blogging

This vintage bedroom

And this adorable mantel and how to make your own Christmas village

And one more for the road.

How I made the ornaments on this tree here.

And the story behind the tree topper here.

happy random Saturday to you




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


  1. Image for june june

    I prep everything for T day the day before. Turkey cooked, potatoes, etc. Trust me it does not taste like a tv dinner:) My niece came up with a system several years back when entertaining her inlaws and it was over 50 people. This will be my third year doing this and I cannot wait to start. I am rewarded with a good nights sleep and ready for a fun day with my family and granddog. I don't want to bog down your site with my recipes/tips, if interested send me an email.

    1. Image for Bobbie Bobbie

      Just read. Your comment on making things ahead for T-day. Would love to know how you do your potatoes... thanks so much

  2. Image for Denise Cox Denise Cox

    GREAT posts this morning, KariAnne!!! I especially enjoyed the French Cottage. .. how sweet a story and that tree in the picture was lovely. And I loved that table/table setting in the first post and those cute ornaments used for napkin holders.

  3. Image for CherylB CherylB

    You’re COOKING!?!? Lol Wet brine your turkey if you can before roasting OR just preorder a cracker barrel one lol Best mashed potato secret... Yukon gold potatoes. Warm heavy whipping cream with a little sugar then add , no milk, lots of butter salt and pepper ..delicious Good luck girl!!

  4. Image for Louise Louise

    I am not a cook. However when I was married we lived 1500 miles from family and so my husband really wanted to have a Thanksgiving dinner. It seemed like a lot of work for two people so we occasionally had friends come over who also lived miles from home. The first year we were advised by an elderly gentleman who always cooked the turkey for his lady friend ( she did the sides and they bought the pies) that the easiest way to cook a turkey is to use the “bag.” We used the turkey roasting bags every year and we were never disappointed. So if this is your first,fifth or fiftieth time and always worry about the turkey being moist and tender... I suggest using the “bag.”

  5. Image for Be Be

    Oh I have enjoyed all the Christmas ideas. Just inspires me. Yes, you can paint a tree. My Dad painted cars for a living and at Christmas he would paint trees for many homes and schools. When I was in 4th grade, we voted to paint the classroom tree blue. It was a beautiful med blue and we used white and silver on it. Prettiest tree in the school. You can do anything!!!!

  6. Image for Betsy Betsy

    Karianne, Here's my hint on cooking a turkey. I tell my husband that no one cooks a turkey and stuffing like him. Works like a charm. xoxoxox

  7. Image for Kris Kris

    Before you brine your turkey or use the turkey bag or any other of these great suggestions, make sure you THAW THE TURKEY!!!! If you bought it frozen, it will take several days to thaw. I'm also a fan of doing as much food prep beforehand as possible. I get distracted when people are hanging out in my kitchen and I find the best way to both manage my stress and keep myself from being distracted is to prep prep prep. Also ..,.. take guests up on their offers to bring food. They want to help and that's a tangible way for them to assist. You want to enjoy your company. So .... it's win-win for all of you. Keep us posted on how your meal goes! BTW, I may actually consider making some of those Scandinavian stars--love! And while I didn't find any crafts to make while traveling from the ones that were listed (I always try to bring a project for when I'm visiting my in-laws during T-giving), I DID find the most adorable knit-your-own-cat-bed on that site. Thanks for the fun Thistlekeeping today!

  8. Image for Jennifer Osborn Jennifer Osborn

    My best turkey advice for you is to start hot. I learned that from Martha Stewart. The bird should spend the first half hour or so at 450 then lower to 375. Cover with foil if things are starting to brown too much. Also, don't do everything yourself. Get at least one side or two from a good deli or a Whole Foods if you've got one nearby. Or order one of the pies instead of making all of them yourself. Finally, not sure if you're a drinker but wine, a glass of wine by your side makes everything a little easier I find. A good one for Thanksgiving Day is a Vinho Verde, it has a low alcohol content so you can start sipping early and still be totally fine when you sit down to the feast. Vinho Verde is dry and citrusy with a bit of effervescence and inexpensive. Most are under $10. Also Deelicious!

  9. Image for Laurie T Laurie T

    I don't like to cook either but my family LOVES my garlic mashed potatoes! Cut, boil and drain 5 lbs. of potatoes. Add: 1 stick butter, 1 1/4 cups half and half, 8 oz whipped cream cheese, 1 t garlic salt, 1/4 t nutmeg. Mash together. Then spoon into a 9x13 pan and bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Sprinkle 1 cup sliced almonds over the top and bake for 15 minutes longer. These are delicious! Enjoy!!

  10. Image for Debbie S. Debbie S.

    Whether you cook a full size turkey or turkey breasts, cook them in turkey bags. They will come out moist and make you look like a rock star!

  11. Image for Eileen Eileen

    I love your Saturday’s....I flipped out on the Swedish decorations. What a clever idea. I live rurally or I would have purchased tons of gift paper already! Just stunning! I’m of Swedish descent so an added bonus!

  12. Image for Martha Woods Martha Woods

    The best turkey tip I ever got was years ago on a cooking show in Tulsa, OK. To help the white meat/breast to be moist, turn the turkey with the dark meat on top so the juices will automatically baste the breast meat as it cooks. If I didn't say that clearly, just turn the turkey upside down to bake.

  13. Image for Donna Bray Donna Bray

    Thanks for the recap! Hot chocolate, a blanket and now to revisit everything in this post. Perfect thing to do on a cold, rainy day in Kentucky. GO CARDS😉! Lol. I look forward to your next brilliant idea. Stay beautiful friend.

  14. Image for courtney courtney

    Love ALL of this - and we are hosting this week over here too but a day early because of crazy work schedules. And you are so sweet- thank you for including my wee tree and tinsel story! Love you much!!! xo


    KariAnne: Thanks for making each Saturday so interesting! Your post is so full of ideas and inspiration!! Thank you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Sorry your team lost :(

  16. Image for Pam Pam

    The best tip I have is to cook everything on Wednesday. It allows you to not work about it being done at a specific time, clean up the mess, etc. Then out the turkey in a Crock-Pot and cover with all the juice. On Thursday just slowly reheat. It's juicy leaves to so much more oven space!

  17. Image for Gina Gina

    I gave a terrified mom friend who was hosting her first Thanksgiving this advice 10 yrs ago and says she still does this successfully every year since. I think i saw it on a cooking show. First, it takes a couple of days to thaw a large turkey. Second, remember to take the giblet bag out of the bird!!! Many people forget this!!! To cook, take a roasting bag for turkeys and place it in a roasting pan. Line the bottom of the bag with celery stalks, carrots, and onions. Sit the seasoned turkey on top of vegetables and close the bag. The turkey will be very juicy. This was how i did my first turkey. It's so easy. Also, spiral ham is precooked, just add glaze and heat. Have everyone bring side dishes and dessert and make your other dishes on Wednesday. Happy Thanksgiving to all the Thistles!

  18. Image for Cheryl Foley Cheryl Foley

    I always use an oven bag for my turkey. I rub the turkey skin all over with olive oil or butter, and put onions and celery inside the cavity. I sprinkle herbs and seasonings all over the skin My best tip...is to cook the turkey breast side down. This makes the meat stay so juicy 👍😊I roll the turkey over the last 30 minutes so it looks browned and normal. 🦃

  19. Image for Kate @ Centsational Style Kate @ Centsational Style

    Aw you're the sweetest to include my Thanksgiving place cards. I always look forward to your weekend roundup, how lovely to see my post among what inspires you. xo Kate

  20. Image for sue sue

    Dear Karianne, Could you possibly (please, pretty please) show your beautiful 2019 Christmas tour, including the tree in the newly deep blue dining room, available on your blog? Not everyone feels comfortable using face book/instagram. Thank you so much (even if your answer is no) for all the beautiful decorating you share with us, and I love all the turkey suggestions everyone gave you. Planning to borrow a couple of those myself, lol.

  21. Image for Marlene Stephenson Marlene Stephenson

    I took some me time this morning and read Thistlekeeping and enjoyed it so much, as i always do, thank you. I know your dinner will be wonderful, have a great time and Happy Thanksgiving.

  22. Image for Peg Peg

    My advice would be to relax and enjoy, being together is the most important thing! You got this because you're a ROCKSTAR!! Happy Thanksgiving KariAnne!!! xoxo

  23. Image for Carrie Carrie

    Cool your turkey in an electric roaster! So easy and it frees up the oven for other things! I’ve cooked my turkeys this way for almost 20 years and never burned or dried one out (yet!) and yes, I stuff it before putting it into the roaster. Good luck! And sorry about your football season ending. What memories that have been made this fall for you and your daughters and all the other fans!

  24. Image for Jan Jan

    Thaw your turkey if it's frozen. If you bought a frozen turkey today, take it back and get a fresh one. As others have said, use a bag to ensure a successful first time. If it doesn't work (which it will!), it makes it easier to throw away and you have no clean up. DON'T FORGET TO TAKE THE INNER BAG OUT OF THE TURKEY BEFORE ROASTING IT.

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