Travel Makes The World A Little Bit Smaller

Travel

When I think of the word “world,” small does not come to mind. In fact, the words that rise to the front are more like vast, big, wide. You get the picture. There’s so much to see and experience. There’s nothing small about it. However, over the years of traveling, I’ve realized that even though we live in a big, wide world, travel actually makes the world a little bit smaller.

Have you ever been in route and bumped into someone you knew? Or even spotted a famous person? It’s in those times that I can’t believe, out of all the places I could be in the world, among the billions of people that inhabit this Earth, that I could bump into a familiar face.

One time my husband and I were in the coastal town of Muizenberg, just outside of Cape Town, when in walked several friends of ours from Texas. Incredible. Laughs over the chance meeting as well as a “What are you doing here in South Africa?” conversation ensued. A chance travel encounter brought us together, just like that.

Chance Encounter

The craziest chance encounter, however, went something like this…

We were flying from Johannesburg to Atlanta on Delta. … >> find out more...

Jen Price

Jen currently makes her home between two continents, one in the great state of Texas and the other in a small town in the Mpumalanga province of South Africa. She wears many hats such as wife, mother, photographer, storyteller, communications director, writer, traveler, and lover of dark chocolate. She writes for several websites including her personal blog, I Believe In Love, where she shares her creative ventures, her photography, and the stories of the orphans she loves on in S. Africa.

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Not Perfect Makes For Happy Holidays

// This post is sponsored by CBS Films.  As always the opinions, naughty children, and stories are all mine.  Thank you for being kind to Petit Elefant sponsors. //

Congrats to Number 23, Rachel! Please contact us right away, Rachel, and enjoy your trip to see family this holiday season! 

I’m a recovering perfectionist.  Which is to say, I strive for happy perfection always but at least now I recognize the fault in it, and the impossibility of actual, true perfection.  In fact, I’d say I’m doing a pretty good job letting go and letting things happen naturally these days.  It doesn’t mean I don’t still want things to be ‘picture perfect’, but the older I get the more I realize how genuinely mistaken it is to try and make things ‘just right’ when ‘getting it done’ is almost always better.

 

holiday movie

The holidays bring out the O.C.D. in people like me, people who’d like family functions to have a closely followed itinerary and no snags in the plan.  But the more family holidays I enjoy, the more I realize just how great imperfect plans are, and how much more joy they allow for than a ‘canned’ experience.

A … >> 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!

Quote Of The Week This Week: Space – Petit Elefant

It’s Quote of the Week time!  This one has been on our DIY chalkboard for a few months, because we all need a little reminder everyday.  A reminder that the universe is bigger than us, and that at the very same time, we’re all a part of it.  That within every one of us is something huge and important, and special.  Carl Sagan was a wise one, and I love looking at these words every day and feeling both critical to the universe and almost irrelevant at the same time.  Space makes everything seem so wide and wonderful, doesn’t it?  Especially with all the news about Mars and the photos coming from N.A.S.A.!  Can you even believe we had men walking on the moon ONLY 46 years ago?!  It boggles the mind.  (name that movie)

This week’s quote of the week below!

petit elefant quote of the week

Petit Elefant Quote of the Week

The cosmos are within us.

– Carl Sagan –

 

 

If you’re just starting with this series, or need to catch up, here are all the quotes so far:

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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!

DIY Thanksgiving Platter

thanksgiving platter

Do you have a favorite quote about gratitude that you like to keep in your heart? Especially this time of year, our thoughts turn to taking note of our many many blessings and messages of inspiration. This easy little Thanksgiving Platter project is a simple, sentimental way to immortalize those thoughts of gratitude.

thanksgiving platterWhat you’ll need:

  • An oven safe plate, platter, or mug
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton pads or puffs or cotton swabs
  • Oil based paint pens-sharpie brand or other. Mine are a different brand and it all worked out just fine.
  • An oven

thanksgiving platterStart by giving your plate a good swipe with the rubbing alcohol, making sure it is clean and dry before inking it up.

Then, choose your favorite thankful sentiment, quote, or thought. After practicing on paper once or twice, just free-hand write or draw directly onto your plate or platter or mug. Add any little swirls or embellishments you like. If you make a mistake, juste wipe it off with alcohol and cotton. No bigs. Just be sure to wipe off any and all smudges completely. When your design is done, set it aside for 2-3 days. Yes, days. This allows the paint to dry thoroughly and really … >> 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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Thanksgiving Round Up Of Links

It’s Thanksgiving time!  Almost.  It’s almost Thanksgiving.  But it’s time to round up my best, most favorite, most delicious, prettiest posts so you can start prepping for your Thanksgiving holiday.  I’ve got pie recipes, gluten free stuffing, crafts and more!  I hope this helps you have a wonderful, stress-free, glorious Thanksgiving dinner with the ones you love the most.  Cheers!

peanut butter pie pumpkin cream pie recipe oven roasted pumpkin seeds mashed sweet potatoes how to make a pie crust do it yourself napkin rings pumpkin face mask

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

>> 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!

2 Ways To Style Your Fall Boots

Fall Boots

Why Fall is the best season, for style, reason #1: boots.  BOOTSBoots.  Any kind of boots you can get your hands on.  I’m partial to riding boots, but ankle booties and cowboy boots also don my closet shelves.  I’m not so much picky about the kind of boots, just as long as I get to wear them once it cools down.

 

leather riding boots

How do you like to style your boots?  There are so many different ways to wear them, and they go with almost anything, (maybe the only exception is swimsuits?)  but today we’re going to focus on 2 ways to style your favorite pair.

 

leather boots

Probably my most favorite Fall + Winter go-to outfit with boots is the following:

  • leggings
  • tunic
  • chunky jewelry + accessories
  • boots

Like this outfit I’m wearing below, this style prescription is the most (well, MY most, anyway) foolproof way to get dressed in the crispier months of the year.  I wear a variation of this outfit all the time.

 

fall style 2 Ways To Style Your Boots

I recently added two new pair of boots to my wardrobe and am loving styling them a myriad different ways.  In addition to leggings, you can also wear super skinny jeans … >> 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!

What To Watch On Netflix This Month

It’s the Neflix binge-watch recommendation time of the month, are you ready?  Oh boy, do I have a good one for you.  I had the unfortunate luck last week to get waylaid by a terrible flu, but the good news is I had plenty of time in bed to binge on a new Netflix show.  Since I was down and out for the count, I took the advice of my husband and watched Hell On Wheels.  My husband and a couple of his co-workers have been trying to push AMC’s Hell on Wheels on me for months, but it just looked a little too, I don’t know?  Dude-centric?  But if you’re in the same boat let me just go ahead and give you this recommendation:

I started the show 72-hours ago and I’m already on season 3.  SEASON 3 guys, in 3 days.

 

What To Watch On Netflix

The show is set in the time period right after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, as the American transcontinental railroad starts heading West in a race to meet up with the Union Pacific.  And I don’t know, I guess it just isn’t something I’ve thought a whole lot about, even though I … >> 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!

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Chocolate Loving + The Month Of Thanksgiving

Are you chocolate bingeing right now?  I’m not judging, I just want to know who else is sitting in their fat pants today.  Because I’m definitely wearing elastic waistbands all week while I sweat off all the delicious Halloween candy / chocolate I can’t stop double fisting eating.

 

Chocolate Loving and The Month Of Thanksgiving

Was Halloween as fun for you as it was for us?  I love having a teenager on Halloween so much, I can’t even tell you.   My girl is a riot.  Part of it is that is that she invents and designs and sews her own costumes.  Part of it is watching her get inspired and excited about ideas.  And I’ll be really honest, part of it, a huge part, is that I don’t have to have anything to do with it.

Sofie’s costume for all her random school musical performances over the last few weeks was been Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas, but the costume she really put time and energy into building from scratch is the one in the photo above: Nyan Cat, (thank heaven for soundless costumes).

Anyway, we had a fabulous holiday and yesterday we celebrated Sofie’s 16th birthday.  16!!!!!!!!!!!  Shhhhh, I’m over it already (*SOB*).  … >> 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!

Our Halloween Costumes This Year

This year our Halloween costumes were straight up D.I.Y. and both kids decided they wanted to make their own costumes without any help from me thankyouverymuch, (hallelujah for this stage of life!).  This year was double fun because our friend and photographer Justin Hackworth shot Halloween photos of the kids last week ahead of the holiday so you get a sneak peek into how they’re headed out tonight.  I absolutely love how the pictures turned out! He’s a magician, that Justin.

My little Lego brick was super easy.  I didn’t actually participate in any of the making of said costume, but here’s the DIY if you want to make your own!

 

Our Halloween Costumes

How to make a Lego costume:

  • hot glue
  • furniture box
  • paper plates
  • saw
  • spray paint

 

sass

 

  1. Cut a circle in the top of the box for the head.  Cut out the whole bottom of the box, so you can slide it on.  Cut armholes.
  2. Hot glue paper plates to the front and back of the box.  We used 6 to make a 2 x 6 Lego brick.
  3. Spray paint entire box the Lego color of your choice.  We liked how true the blue was to an
>> 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!