How are you doing in this limbo week between calendar years? It's always felt kind of like non-time to me. Which I am loving right now, since I have little planned and lots I'd like to do around the house before I go back to work next week. I went through the boys' clothes today, which is always very satisfying. The toys are next on my list; I'm planning on tackling those tonight and tomorrow. Ah, I love cleaning and purging!

Above are a couple of the little gifts that we gave to friends and family this year. Phillip helped me decorate the vanilla jar. I think he did a great job! Have you made vanilla before? It's just about the easiest (and most delicious) thing possible; all it takes is a little bit of time. And you can buy organic vanilla beans on eBay for waaaaay less than at the grocery store. And I made the beeswax candles, which smell heavenly, too.

We don't have any grand plans for New Year's, but I do have some double-cream Brie, pecans, and maple syrup. Sounds like a party to me! I hope that you have a great time ringing in 2012. Happy New Year!


  1. Melissa12/29/2011

    Hi Sherrie,

    I love the bottle of vanilla and your beeswax candles. Tell me, did you just melt down the beeswax and pour into molds? I'd wanted to make candles for Christmas, but ran out of time.

    Happy New Year!


  2. Lovely pictures! I wish I had done all handmade this year. The vanilla would be fun to make. Is it complicated? I will have to try that sometime.

  3. Melissa,
    It's not difficult at all. I just heated the beeswax in a double boiler (that won't be used for food or anything else), lined up the wicks in the jars (they need to be pretty large wicks and secured in place), poured the wax in really slowly and carefully, and let them sit for a day or so. Ta-da!
    Michelle, the vanilla could not be easier. Take a jar of vodka, and toss in a bunch (maybe 6?) of split and scraped vanilla beans. Let it sit for at least 6-8 weeks or so, shaking every few days, or now and then when you think of it. You can strain it when you're decanting it into cute gift jars to avoid solids and cloudiness. That's it!

  4. I will try it! Thank you so much for sharing how you made it!!

  5. Happy New Year Sherrie! We're lying low between the days here as well, just resting from a busy year and planning for 2012. I love your beeswax candles! I switched to all beeswax candles in the house this past year and love it :)
    Have a lovely time ringing in the New Year!

  6. Those are excellent gifts! I am sure everyone enjoyed them. Happy New Year!!


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