Hello From the Other Side

Hello. It’s me. I’m in Minnesota grooving to Adele as often as possible, attempting to stay healthy this Winter, and feeling my way into 2016. For better or worse, my functional internet took a vacation over the holidays which meant more time for family, reading, writing, watching, and baking. Most importantly, it allowed for an unintentional, fresh outlook of the new year to fall gracefully on my lap…well, actually it arrived via journal writing but more on that later!

Before I get back to my writing, some highlights from 2015 and new ideas to share with you all…

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Nicole Franzen from La Buena Vida captures the details of her travels beautifully, especially the written words from her recent time in Miami.

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Inspired by this Brooklyn letterer, looking to travel through her words: 26 Letters 26,000 miles.

I’ve watched this piece of history multiple times. Joe is my hero.

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For all you Pacific Northwesters, this A New Beginning in Script Writing workshop looks divine at the creative, community space Field Trip in Portland.

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Are you entering into 2016 with one word or a thought in mind? I’m inspired by the suggestions from The Chalkboard on ways to express this theme during the new year (maybe you’ll find your words at Goldpress where words are highly valued!).

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If you did not get around to reflecting on 2015, there’s still time. Mother Mag created a thoughtful list of questions to ask yourself as the new calendar year begins. A simple gift to yourself.

Finally, If you need an excuse to get off the screens, phones and all social media, I’ve got it: another Mercury Retrograde has taken over the next three weeks. Just be sure to check out the Brown Ink Holiday Sale before you’re completely off the grid! Off to create my word for 2016.

Timeless for the Holidays

It’s the time of year where I yearn for a certain equilibrium in each day and try to balance the challenges of “needs” and “wants” with what is actually meaningful in our lives. When it comes to gift giving I find myself wanting to spend energy and money on timeless pieces. As we make our annual holiday list for the assortment of people in our lives, these pieces might work beautifully….

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For your office staff who appreciate a personal gift, the custom, monogramed notebooks from Appointed are ideal for both men and women! (order by December 18th!)

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These Thermoplastic Erasers from my favorite boutique in Manhattan, CW Pencil Enterprise, would be fabulous for the 1st-grader in your life who just happened to fall in love with cursive writing this year in school!

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For your sister’s boyfriend, the coming-of-age photographer, the Hygge Edition of Kinfolk notecards embodies the Danish Winter lifestyle through an inspiring lens.

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For the creative mother-in-law who is often cutting stationery or fabric, these Japanese Copper Scissors from Kaufmann Mercantile would look beautiful under the tree, eventually displayed on her desk and used on many occasions!

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A girl’s gotta sketch in style, am I right? Why not treat the designer sister of yours to a monogramed Kelly Wearstler Sketchbook from Paper Chase Press, one she will treasure for years!

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For the contemporary brother-in-law who appreciates fine quality, the Brass Desk Set from TRNK is a stunner, being both handsome and functional.

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To the college-age babysitter who is often quoting her professor, blow her away with a custom, illustrated quote from the talented artist Celeste C. Clark!

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To the mother who is always prepared with the perfect card at any moment (and also appreciates a gift which keeps on giving!), Nicely Noted makes it simple with the Monthly Card Subscriptions or the Bundle Card Collections with fabulous letterpressed themes!

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For your partner, the astounding and world-renowned novelist, the Bindewerk Purist Wood Lined Journal found at the beautiful Greer Chicago is a must, holding both beauty and craftsmanship (pick up a Kaweco Rollerball Pen as well!).

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To your family member who treasures documenting life’s moments through the written word, the Letters to My Future Self should most definitely find its way under the tree! (And here are all the reasons why it’s such a good gift).

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As far as making the gift special, why not honor the reciever with a thoughtful handmade touch? I love the simplicity to the approach Artifact Uprising brought to my attention. Your guests can keep the photo for future enjoyment!

If all else fails, bake a loaf of gingerbread for those you love. It’s nourishing, the baking process slows you down, and the aroma will remind you why these tranquil moments are so needed in our lives…And then write about it in your journal so you won’t forget next year!

Thankful With a Dash of Perplexity

Lately, Minnesotans appear a bit perplexed. Our Indian Summer has wonderfully continued into the midst of November and, as Thanksgiving approaches, folks aren’t sure if they should water their still flourishing, cold-loving vegetables in the garden, buy tree tops, holiday shop, pull out the Christmas cookie cutters, or mow the lawn. Here’s what I say…do what moves you!

For me, especially around Thanksgiving, writing a note to a friend is what feels instinctively natural.

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Be it a humorous Thanksgiving card (“over the river and thru the woods”)…

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…or a reminder of your gratitude for their being, it’s a transparent but powerful act of love.

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Or drop one of these Thankful Notes into a loved ones purse, briefcase or lunchbox this month (new Mini Notes just in from Live Love, where each purchase equals a meal for one in need)!

For those of you with Thanksgiving on the brain, check out my previous posts for ideas involving both handwriting and the family dinner! A new one to add this season comes from the always creative Sugar Paper with their Thanksgiving Project.

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With every purchase in November (or chose to download for free), you’ll receive a set of cards to kick-off your Thanksgiving meal and promote connectedness and conversation among friends and family!! These questions could be exactly what you need to create a mindful gathering.

For you Twin Citians in the Holiday shopping spirit, come visit Brown Ink and support local vendors at these two Holiday Markets this week….

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Be thankful. Write a few notes. Support the locals. And take deep breaths in between.

Featured Designer: Moglea

Confession. For the past few years I’ve developed a big time, girl crush on Meg Gleason from Moglea. As I slowly strolled by her booth at the National Stationery Show, I would observe both the crowds and the cards and then continue on. Finally this past year I could no longer bare the lure of her handwriting, colors and designs and introduced myself to Meg and her talented team, including her husband and co-founder, Chad. And I’ve never looked back!

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We’re thrilled to feature Meg as the recent Featured Designer – And lucky you, readers, can receive 20% OFF all of the Moglea products through November 6th! (use code: Moglea20)