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My Favorite Holiday Flicks

Let’s be honest, binge watching all my favorite holiday movies is pretty much the best tradition ever.  A tradition that requires zero effort other then plopping down on the couch, or my bed if I please, tuning up ye olde dvd player and settling in for the night. I am all about the minimal effort when it comes to the holidays and I’d be lying if I said I hadn’t participated in this tradition several times already. Some people hit the mall this time of year, some people hit the couch. I’m team couch, the mall is way too crowded.

christmas movies

‘Tis the season.

So, you know, because I love you I think it’s time we talk about my top 5 favorite holiday flicks. I’m hoping you’ve seen most, if not all, of these so that we have that much in common. If not, add them to your list and return so we can discuss. Movie time!

 

white christmas

*image via Movie Gazette

White Christmas – Danny Kaye, Bing Crosby, Rosemary freakin’ Clooney, and of course… Vera-Ellen’s legs. It’s just my favorite. I sing all the songs and wish I could dance all the dances, and of course I cry when they … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Last Minute Gifts Under $50

Who else doesn’t have all of their shopping done for the holidays? I hope I’m not the only one! Don’t despair! Last minute gifts aren’t that hard to come by.

Moms do a lot right? I think they deserve the best when it comes to Christmas presents. Let’s give the moms (and other important gals) in our lives the greatest Christmas ever with these awesome gifts under $50. I’m not going to lie, I would want any (or all!) of these! Word on the street is that most of our staff would, also. Kids- are you paying attention.

collagegift

1. How fab are these gloves from Anthropologie? Gotta keep those fingers nice and warm! ($48)

2. Every house needs a beautiful calendar for 2015! I love this one from Rifle Paper Co. ($26)

3. Get cozy in these polka dot printed pj’s from Gap! ($44.99)

4. This 3-wick candle from Bath and Body Works will fill your home with the most divinely cozy smells! ($22.50)

5. Isn’t this scarf beautiful? Looks super comfy too! Get it at Loft! ($34.50)

6. Everyone needs a classic pair of stud earrings! THESE from Kate Spade! ($48)

7. I think any mom would love to … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

You Do You – A Mantra For Holiday Cheer

If you are in need of a snappy mantra for holiday cheer to get you through the season, stick around. Friends, please meet Kalli Verbecky. She’s visited us before, is generally fabulous, and today has shared a refreshing perspective and gentle reality check, to which I say amen.

IT’S ALMOST FREAKING CHRISTMAS

christmas tree lotI mean, duh, right?

You have your advent calendar out, your halls are decked to the max, and cookies and treats, and zoo lights, and making gingerbread houses, and trimming your tree, and an elf on a shelf and hot cocoa for all! Because that is what celebrating the holidays in 2014 means I guess. This level of festive commitment is what your kids are counting on because you ARE the source of friggin’ holiday magic! So get with the program and try not to ruin their childhoods with a lackluster December showing. You don’t want to spend the rest of the year in a shame cycle now do you?

Let’s dial that back for a minute with a short vignette: last December I had a bit of a wake-up call. Let me preface this by saying I love the holidays, I love Thanksgiving, I love Christmas, … >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Handle Your Holiday Shopping The Smart Way

I don’t know about you, but online shopping is my best friend this time of year, a godsend actually, considering that we’ve been in survival mode for the past several months at our house. Not that that makes us any different from any other family, aren’t we all in survival mode? Preach!

I haven’t left my house to Christmas shop at an actual brick and mortar store once this year, and I’ve somehow managed to avoid the mall all together, hallelujah! Praise the online shopping gods for delivering everything straight to my door. Of course, lots of online shopping means lots of shipping costs and dealing with hassle filled returns and exchanges. Is it just me or do those things take F-O-R-E-V-E-R? So annoying, right? It’s kind of the worst. That stuff adds up and time is money, chop chop!

All of those reasons are why I’m glad I discovered Shoprunner this year.

Won’t lie, it’s kind of saved my bacon with its free 2-day shipping, free no-hassle returns, and then of course there’s all those handy dandy member only deals where I get access to sales and deals available only to Shoprunner members like myself. Plus, if you >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Finding Holiday Spirit

christmas decor holdiay spiritFriends! It’s December and the holiday spirit is everywhere, except I’m not feeling it. I thought November would never ever end, but here we are on December 4th and the festivities are upon us. Somehow in the last 3 days we’ve managed to decorate a Christmas tree, put lights on the house, mail greeting cards, and listen to every Christmas album we own. A stack of our favorite holiday movies is on standby for the coming weekend, and the shopping is nearly done. It certainly seems like we are all ready for holiday joy and cheer, but I just don’t have my usual holiday mojo. I’ve gathered a few bits and pieces of inspiration to help me along, feel free to join me.

It’s really cold here, but not snowy and pretty, just cold and grey. So, I’m going to simmer up a lovely pot of this wassail to warm me up from the inside out–including my spirits!

cranberry wassail

Then I’m going to fantasize that I have a fancy holiday party to attend. I don’t, but a little day dreaming never hurt anyone. This collection of holiday party dresses all styled up with fabulous shiny accessories ought to brighten my day … >> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

How-To Preserve Garden Herbs For Winter

Today’s how-to is all about preserving garden herbs for winter.  Did you know that was a thing?  If only my teenage self could see me now.  She’d be horrified that I not only keep a garden, but take extra steps to preserve my herbs for the Winter.  It’s all good, teenage Allison, chill out.

how-to preserve garden herbsLearning how-to preserve your herbs to use in the cold months of the year is a thing, and it’s a super easy thing at that.  Also, tasting *fresh* garden herbs in the depths of frozen Winter?  I don’t want to go Martha on you, but it’s a good and lovely thing, a very wonderful thing, so let’s get to it.

I planted a lot of herbs in my Summer garden this year, and had rosemary and basil coming out my nose so I’m grateful there’s a way to preserve that business.  (although don’t try to preserve basil, it’s a wimpy plant for the freezer)  Let’s get started, shall we?

How-To Preserve Garden Herbs For Winter

Items needed:

  • chopping knife
  • cutting board
  • fresh rosemary
  • ice cube trays
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • Saran-Wrap
  • freezer

garden rosemaryStep 1:

Pick rosemary from your garden.  Or from the grocery store shelves.… >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Moms Simple Homemade Granola Recipe

My mom’s granola is one of the better things this earth has to offer, and I’m not even kidding a little.  It’s the simple things in life that make it so good, you know?

homemade granola Growing up as one of the younger siblings in a family of 8 kids, I got ripped off a fair amount of my young life.  I never had anything new, and anything precious I did have was broken / stolen / maimed within moments of landing within my reach.  But, like any good cliché, I always had a playmate, which came in handy every year when we took our family vacation. >> Read More

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!

Decadent Toffee Apple Dip Recipe

Apple Dip Serving2 copy This Toffee Apple Dip is going to make you very popular this fall. I know this because once, many years ago, my husband and I attended a grown-ups only Halloween party at a neighbor’s house. In the middle of the buffet was a platter of apples and a bowl of a creamy, sweet dip I’d never heard of before. Guests were wild for it. The lovely gal who made it explained that it’s her go-to treat to take to all sorts of functions, and graciously shared the recipe for her Toffee Apple Dip. I was instantly envious that I hadn’t discovered it first.  I wished it could be my go-to treat for parties. But, as it was, I tucked that recipe away for the right opportunity to share.

Luckily, I moved out of state a short time later and could wow my new neighbors with toffee apple dip. Now it’s my go-to treat recipe for all it’s sweet and creamy, with a buttery toffee crunch. Plus it’s healthy, because, well, apples. And it’s incredibly simple.

Toffee Apple DIp

Your Ingredients:

  • 8 oz cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla
  • dash of cinnamon (optional)
  • 1/3 cup
>> find out more...

Kimberly

...by day, making a home where the buffalo roam. By night, pretty much the same thing, punctuated by the occasional fantasies of sunny beaches, italian movies and sparkling lemonade.

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Best Of Me Romantic Movie For Your Weekend

***Congratulations to our winner, Elizabeth C. who said: What a hard question! I have a bunch of favorite movies…
But because it’s nearly Halloween and I’ve been watching a lot of scary movies, my favorite movie currently is Poltergeist.

 Please contact Petit Elefant directly, Elizabeth, and a special thanks to everyone who participated.

I’m a movie fan.  Which is to say, I love a feel-good movie of any sort, especially the romantic.  So sue me.  Life is hard enough on its own, and sometimes I want a little escapism on my weekends.  And my weeknights.  And the in-between ones too.  Which is the whole point of the movie industry, yes?

The Best of MeOkay, well this weekend Nicholas Sparks’ book turned movie, The Best of Me hits theaters, and I for one am planning to be front row center.

Well, maybe not front row, that’s a little drastic.  But you know what I mean.  I love a good sappy movie, and I need a break from real life, so boom, magic! And anyway, have you seen James Marsden?  He’s not so hard on the eyes, that one.

Best of Me (Check out the Le Creuset pot in this scene from The Best of Me. >> find out more...

Allison

Well, hello there! I'm Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. We do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, crazy home remodel projects, and cool (yes, cool) DIY crafts you'll totally want to try. I'm super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we're a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!