Random thoughts on a November morning with the sun rising up behind the trees:

1. Christmas PSA: Did you know you can bend old Christmas garland (if it’s wired) into shapes? Make a letter or a star or a Christmas tree or a bell.

2. Today is the last day to order the Christmas decorating and holiday merry-making bundle. There are so many different e-books and downloadables and ideas and inspiration to get you ready for the holidays.

You can see it here.

3. Buddy (our golden retriever) just went in for his annual physical and got a clean bill of health. He is 14 in dog years and even longer in people years. He still acts like a teenager. Especially when you put out food.

4. It was an amazing week on the blog. We started the “12 Days of Getting Ready for Christmas” series and talked about how to choose a Christmas theme and gift wrapping ideas and inexpensive Christmas centerpieces and ways to make last year’s Christmas decor look like new and what to buy for everyone on your list that you have no idea what to get them.

5. We are going shopping downtown today. If you ever get to our neck of the woods (McKinney, Texas) you HAVE to visit our downtown. There are the cutest coffee shops and restaurants and boutiques and events and concerts around our downtown square. It’s right out of a Hallmark movie.

And now?

Are you ready?

Want a little inspiration with your coffee this morning?

Here are my links and ideas from this week.

I’ve put together charcuterie boards before.

But mini ones? It’s next-level grazing.

See the entire post on how to put these together here.

Nothing says this time of year to me like a simmer pot.

It makes your house smell amazing.

See all the how-to’s here.

Every year I force paperwhite bulbs.

The key is timing them for Christmas.

See the best tips for forcing paperwhites here.

This rustic rosemary bread.

Doesn’t it look so delicious?

See the recipe here.


And in random news:

This is the cutest Christmas tour (wait  until you see the back porch)

These pumpkin oatmeal cookies

These tips for wrapping odd-shaped gifts

This clever idea with a clock

These salted caramel crumb bars

This tour of a Christmas cottage

These mini signs for the bathroom

This dough bowl floral centerpiece

The cutest holiday screen savers

This spoke to my heart

This rustic pear tart

This fun bed-making tip

These rolls that look like pumpkins

And this.

I thought this was kind of genius and I’m trying it in my house somewhere.

And one more for the road

You can make this wreath almost for free if you have extra drop cloth laying around.

See the DIY here.

Have a Day As Amazing As You Are

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


  1. Image for Laura Harrie Laura Harrie

    KariAnne, So glad Buddy had a good checkup. He is a special dog to your family and everyone loves seeing him in your pictures!

  2. Image for Marlene Stephenson Marlene Stephenson

    As always so much to look and think about. Hope you found lots of goodies shopping, I love towns like that. Buddy is so cute glad he's in good shape.

  3. Image for PJ PJ

    I waited until this morning to read Thistlekeeping so that I could savor it with my morning coffee. Each week I look forward to seeing what you have found. Thank you, KariAnne!

  4. Image for Katy Katy

    Enjoyable as always KariAnne! Such a variety of fantastic ideas! Thanks for curating a plethora of goodness! Katy

  5. Image for Francene Francene

    Enjoyed watching you on U Tube this weekend. It looked like you were having fun telling us about your latest "finds on Amazon." You had some really great picks. Can't wait to watch you each week.

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