Something To Read: The Ultimate Christmas & Advent Booklist

My gift to you: a list of books to get you from the first day of Advent to Epiphany.  Each week has a different theme to build up to the excitement of the Christmas Season.
p.s. Check down at the bottom for another little gift from me to you.

Week One:  It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like… Winter


Week Two:  Saints, Legends and Stories
Week Three: The Animals
Week 4:  Gifts and Giving

Christmas Day:  The Christmas Story
Week 5: Celebrating at Home
Week 6: At last, Epiphany.

I know this is a lot of books to remember, and if you’re like me you like a nice list.

So here are all of these books {title & author} in a list you can print and send around.

*this post contains  Amazon Affiliate links*

Thanksgiving on the Moors

We ended up sidelined by the weather on our travel plans so I had the perfect opportunity to wrap up a project.  This is probably the biggest knitting project I’ve ever tackled and I’m glad I saw it through.  It’s just the right size and warm!


I think since I did the shawl up in white it’s more appropriate to call this a Jane Rochester shawl.
 Linking up with Frontier Dreams and Small Things

Advent Plans & This Years Simple Season Calendar!

I have to keep reminding myself that there is a quick turn around between Thanksgiving and Advent again this year.  I’m glad I have last years posts to remind me how helpful it was to have everything planned out in advanced and my notes from the end of the season to remind me what worked and what didn’t.

Here’s what Advent might looking at Casa Make Do this year:

Advent Wreaths and Advent Countdowns/Calendar:
I’m hoping to find fresh greens this year instead of the plastic I have been using.
Still planning on doing the countdown on the mantel, but also found a window Advent calendar to open each day.

Our Saints are from Armadillo Dreams, and I have it on good authority they will be in stock soon!
Our very simple countdown – no chocolates or presents, you just get to put a bookmark on the string 😉

Advent Candles:
We’re trying out this set from Toadily Handmade this year

Feast Days:
We’ll be doing a new Christmas books and treats in shoes for St. Nicholas Day – our observance of St. Nicholas/Santa Clause has developed into a person who comes to remind us what Christmas is about and I’m really liking that.
I’d like to observe a few more Feast Days this year – St. Lucy’s, the Immaculate Conception and O.L. of Gaudalupe, Las Posadas, etc.  Most likely these will be rather simple – a particular meal or book to read, nothing more.
I’d like to work something with the O Antiphons into this year, but I’m still not sure what – Suggestions welcome!


 I’m actually glad that most of the events and concerts are over before Christmas this year.  It’ll be nice to have more down time closer to the end of Advent.  We don’t limit ourselves to the activities that others throw and host – no need to be a scrooge!  Though this year I will again try to stick to Advent and instrumental Christmas music and hold off as long as I can with the really fun stuff (I’m allowed to cheat on this though).

Learning About the Season:

We had a lot of success over lent with Henry doing a bean jar for good deeds that turned into jelly beans on Easter, so I think we’re going to try out putting straw in the manger for Baby Jesus this year.  We have a little wooden toy stable that I think I’ll reserve for the manger and some spare yarn I’ve been wanting to use up.

Santa will set up our Nativity for Christmas morning again this year.

One of the big things I did this year was to get Christmas presents purchased before Advent – other than some baking, and few bits of goodies for stockings I’m done.  It’s all up in my closet and while it felt silly starting to think of Christmas in September and October I’m glad I did it.


I think we’ll continue with putting up the tree on Gaudete Sunday with just lights and slowly decorating while hanging up our  Advent countdown on the mantle and putting up decorations on Christmas Eve. 

*edit Feast of the Immaculate Conception is December 8th

Christmas Eve and Day will be just like most others – Mass on Christmas Eve, presents (still doing our 3 gift rule) on Christmas Day and lots of time with family.

I’d love to observe St. Stephen’s/Boxing Day in some way, but also still figuring that one out.

The Feast of the Holy Innocents and Holy Family will be a simple observance.

I really liked making Orange Birdfeeders with Henry on New Years Day last year, so I want to try to do the same this year.


Epiphany we’ll do our new tradition of spice cookies and making stars to decorate.

It worked out well last year to have some decorations left to put up after Christmas Day – thank you Polar Vortex – but it was fun to have things left to do afterwards as well.

Tools of the Trade:


Last years Advent book of stories was kind of bust, so I’m thinking of trying out:
Any reviews out there?
As for plans around here – I’m thinking I’ll do like last year, lots of picture postcard posts, maybe a few more gift and book lists (I do love compiling them) and in general focusing on being present through the holidays a little more than I am right now.

*I’m an Affiliate for Amazon and Holy Heroes, but all these are all things I’ve purchased with my own money and opinions are my own. *

Hope everyone has a lovely Thanksgiving!  I’ll be back next week with an updated holiday Booklist!

Great Gifts For Geeky Guys {and Girls}

I’ll let you in on a little secret…. I married a geek.  Like RPG loving, Marvel Universe knowing, watches Cosmos for fun geek.  And I’ll let you in on a little secret – he married one too.  A Miyazaki loving, Graphic Novel reading, Geek-craft making geek.  We have so much fun together.  There’s always something new to discover or sink or teeth into and date nights are often spent analyzing or predicting the plot of the most recent fantasy or sci-fi series.

Personally, I think geeks are the most fun to buy for because we love things so completely and there’s always a new edition or version coming out to entice us.

This year I went super geeky for the gifts for my husband and I just can’t wait to see his reaction to it all.  I thought I’d share some of my favorite finds with you guys in case anyone is struggling to come up with a Christmas present for a favorite geeky person.  {Note:  If you see an * next to a store name that means I’ve personally purchased something from this store and am happy with my transaction.  If not I have NOT purchased directly from them, I just think they have a cool product and ask you use your own discretion when ordering}

For all your Geek Gardeners 
(this might be on my! Christmas List)
*NOTE*  The owner of Oohhh, Burn is currently out with a back injury so the store is temporarially closed.  She hopes to be back on her feet before the holidays.  Now is a good time to “favorite” her shop and keep up to date when it re-opens!
Comes in Harry Potter, World of War Craft, Firefly, Sherlock and so many more!

Tardis Jewelry 
Etched Glassware 
Comes in LOTR, World of Warcraft, Avatar: The Last Airbender and many more!
“Got To Fly” Music Inspired by Firefly and Battlestar Galactica 
by Marian Call*

Just about anything from


Steve Jackson Games, a favorite at our home.

Geek Inspired Yarns (Labyrinth: Through Dangers Untold) by
V Yarn

Doctor Who Cross Stitch Samplers
by cloudsfactory

I might have expanded my Christmas List a little just making this.

** I have not been reimbursed or given product by any of the stores mentioned, opinions are 100% my own.  I am an Affiliate with and **

All pictures and ideas are the property of the individual stores and I take no credit for the photographs or the awesomely clever ideas.

A Few of My Favorite Things

I love to support my friends in their crafty, business pursuits.  Is it odd that one thing I actually enjoy about being an employed mother is that it allows me the smallest amount of dinero to help support my friends ventures?  I’ve shared before that most of the business I share on the blog or on my sidebar are businesses of friends who I support out of love (i.e. I don’t make ad revenue of spots on my blog outside of my three affiliate programs).

Since it’s still early enough to add things to our Christmas lists I wanted to share some of my favorite people and their crafty things.

These are things that I’ve purchased that I personally stand behind – the quality is excellent and worth every penny.  These are things that I think adhere to that adage from William Morris “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”  I don’t want to share these items to make your feel like you need more stuff, particularly if it won’t serve a purpose.  I share these things because I believe they might be a beautiful, useful item that you could need or want.

One extra note before we get started – I know, from experience, that money isn’t always free flowing in our households and sometimes it’s hard to see fun, cute things that just aren’t in my budget.  When I make a purchase to support my friends stores it’s usually something that takes planing and saving in my budgets and not something I can do without a second thought with a click of a button.  If you are not in a place to financially support my friends or your friends right now that is okay.  Say a prayer for their endeavors, maybe share a link via social media and don’t worry if pretty things have to sit on your “want” list because the “need” list takes priority.  We’ve all been there and it’s okay.

If you find yourself with a little extra pin money, these are a few of my favorite things made or sold by my dear friends and I would be honored if you’d consider supporting them with your hard earned, well saved money this season.

Bumblewood Handmade  –

Meg’s Tea Tree and Rosemary Scrub is amazing on my dry skin, the Spa Bar is a special treat after a long day and I live in her lip balms in the winter.

Starting November 17th the code HOLIDAY20 will get you 20% on purchases through the end of December!

Organic Mama’s Shop

As I shared last week, I love Shannon’s Rosary bracelets!

Shannon is offering 20% with the code MOLLYMAKESDO now through November 29th.

Allison Kinyon Rosaries

Allison’s rosaries are wonderful too.  I had her make me this one with a Holy Family center and have used it often.  She does amazing custom work and has a wide variety of crucifixes, beads, etc. to choose from.

Allison will be offering some special deals starting in DECEMBER and running through the end of the month:

“I will be having a Cyber Monday sale in my Etsy shop on December 1 that will be free shipping with coupon code CYBERMONDAYFREE
After that there will be 10% off all rosaries through Christmas Eve using coupon code ADVENT10.”
There will also be a Small Business Saturday sale! Use coupon code SMALLBIZSAT for 15% off on Saturday, November 29th!

Call Her Happy

Jenna’s embroidered necklaces are just so much fun, plus she has so many designs to choose from.  I have my eye on a Mistletoe for the holiday season.
Jenna is offering FREE Domestic Shipping with the Code CHHFREESHIP

Lilla Rose Consultant – Mandi R.

Mandy sells beautiful hair accesories through her Lilla Rose store  
 Even short hair gals like me can use the pins and headbands!
Contact her at for the latest deals and specials!

Amazing, handmade baby items!  I’m secretly hoping Nell will start offering these Charlie Harper leggings in an adult size soon.
Nell is going to be offering FREE Shipping NOW through December 31st!

Audrey Eclectic

I’ve got Audrey Eclectic’s Woodland Madonna in my cart just waiting for a purchase.  Isn’t her artwork just amazing?

A Little Message from Audrey Eclectic
 “As for my shop— within the next week I hope to be adding brand new Christmas postcards and handmade ornaments! I also have a free downloadable advent calendar I designed that kids (and adults!) can color in. You can find it on the “downloadables” page of my blog at

If you would like to support me this holiday season I still sell great kids books over at Usborne Books & More  you can order through the site just like any online retailer and most orders ship within 24 hours!  If you’re looking for Christmas books, act quickly – they won’t be restocked when they run out!

And am an affiliate with Holy Heroes

And an Affiliate

Thanks for joining me in this little Holiday Bazaar!  Thank in advance for your support of my friends.

Martinmas Knits

I had to start back in August, but I got them all done!  It was an ambitious year in terms of knitting, but the timing was excellent.  Our first arctic blast of the season rolled in on Martinmas itself and we were all a little happy to have these things ready to go.  This year everyone got a pair of fingerless gloves and a cowl.

 Gloves:  Trigger Gloves.  I think I’ve made 3 pairs of this pattern so far, it’s just about perfect for us
Cowl: Slip Stitch Cowl.  Simple, quick and warm.
 Gloves:  Changing Season Mitts.  These are perfect to slip over those cheap gloves you get at the store for extra warmth.  I think next time I’ll change the division of purl and knit stitches around the palm and it could use a couple cast on stitches when joining around the thumb, but other than that a solid pattern
 Gloves: Fingerless Mitts from Weekend Knitting:
Cowl:  No pattern, just did a moss stitch in the round

Next year… I’m thinking socks.

Grey Gloves:  Shalimar Yarns – Zoe Sock in Wisteria (from my April Knit Crate)
Black/Red Cowl:  Louisa Harding Yarns – Akiko
Blue/Yellow Cowl:  Can’t find tag, but it’s amazing yarn I’ll update when I find it.
Green Cowl: Leftovers from previous project, not sure name of yarn
Green Mitts:  Pattons Classic Wool Worsted in Jade Heather

If you’re a knitter I do highly recommend Knit Crate – I get a bi-monthly sock crate and it’s been fantastic – the extras are amazing and the yarn has always been top notch.