PictureLittle Boy Blond, "hiding" in my fabric bin!
Hi there! Mama here. 

Well, it's the last day of January so I suppose a "Happy New Year!" is in order. Are you ready?

Happy New Year!

Things are just rolling along over here at the Sweet Home kitchen. Since December 31st, we:
-had a NYE party
-organized the crud out of our closets and storage areas
-made a lot of food
-had a lot of company
-watched my baby bump grow bigger and bigger! 

Our plans for 2013 include:
-welcoming baby#2 and adjusting to being a family of four
-blogging more often (maybe twice a month?)
-sewing more (as you can see in the photo above, Little Boy Blond thinks my fabric bin is great fun!)

2012 was a loooong year and we had a lot of adventures, what with bringing our baking business dreams to reality and all. ;) But in truth it was also extremely stressful, and in many ways we kind of dove right in before thinking about where the path would lead. As in: "We need to make how many batches of biscotti this week?!"

I'm really glad we went through all we did to start Sweet Home à la Mama because now the most tedious and confusing parts of starting up are behind us, and we have time to rest a bit and catch our breath before deciding whether to go back to the market again this year. It will mostly depend on how I'm feeling post-baby and whether I can reasonably haul the goods to market with 2 kiddos in tow. If not, we'll just stick to our home sales for a while until we're good and ready to hit the market! :)

So that's where we're at. Over the next few months I may not be updating much with the new baby coming soon, but be sure to check back this summer and see what we're up to!


What things have you done so far to start the new year right? 
Picturewhite lights + 2 goofballs = photo fun!
Hi there! Mama here.

Well, the first snowfall has arrived here in Michigan and some people aren't thrilled, but I can't help but feel excited. The frost in the air and the snow on the roof just make me smile because I know it means the holidays are coming... and I don't know about you, but frost and snow and cold weather all add up to winter-time goodies for me! 

Some of my fondest holiday memories involve the familiar scents and tastes of holiday goodies: Going to my grandma and grandpa's house on Christmas Eve and excitedly dumping out stockings filled with our favorite Christmas candies, my other grandpa carrying those little peppermint Christmas tree nougats in his pockets, getting a box of chocolate bells every year after the church Christmas program, chocolate oranges from my dad, and the scent of my mom's Christmas cookies and breads filling the house with heavenly smells. When I look back on it all and remember how I enjoyed the food more than almost anything else about the season, I wonder...is it really any surprise I've ended up doing this? ;)

So last night Papa and I watched The Green Hornet (way better than the Green Lantern movie, just in case you were wondering) while we savored a couple steaming mugs of hot cocoa (Raspberry for him and French Vanilla with peppermint extract for me). If you don't feel up to making your own from scratch, I highly recommend Land O Lakes brand because, well, it's the best store-bought hot cocoa I've ever tasted. I always make sure to keep at least a dozen of their individual packets around in various flavors during the holidays for guests to enjoy, and trust me--they DO enjoy it!

Aside from just the goodies, holiday crafts are super fun, too. I was looking for one to do with Little Boy Blond and came across one Christmas-time creation that would be just perfect. We use a lot of glass jars here in the Sweet Home kitchen and there are always at least four or five of them just sitting around waiting to be filled with Sweet Home Granola or other goodies. So when I came across Martha Stewart's DIY snow globes, I knew I'd found a winner! Just take any old (clean and dry) glass jar with a lid and a tight seal, and voìla: instant snow globe success! You don't even have to use a Christmas theme for these to be fun; Papa and Little Boy made some with footballs and airplanes and they turned out super cute! (Cotton balls for clouds? Papa is so creative.)

What else? Well, we decided to do a family photo shoot to get some (hopefully) good pictures for a photo card this year (since Mama never actually got around to sending out cards last year...oops), and we had a ball! I was inspired by two Christmas light themed photos I saw on Pinterest: one of three kids and one of a newly engaged couple. I kind of took the lights idea and ran with it, and one of the final results is the picture in this post. We wanted something funny, so I thought up the idea that Little Boy had wrapped Papa in Christmas lights and left him hanging--they both loved it!

Anyway, I hope you're enjoying the season and taking some time out to spend with the ones you love, because--snow or no snow--that's what really makes it feel like Christmas!

Sweet Home à la Mama

What kinds of goodies or crafts are you enjoying this holiday season? Leave a comment and share!