Happy Tuesday, friends! Did you all enjoy this year’s new project that I told you about on Sunday? I am really looking forward to working with this group of 12 bloggers and am hoping you enjoy the journey, too. Make sure to pop over to check out each of the other ladies’ awesome recipes! You can also follow along on our Pinterest board!
Seems like it is about time for another post featuring some things I’m loving right now! I’ve got quite the list of new discoveries after my birthday and Christmas, so let’s get things started today with a few, shall we?
1. 52 Loaves by William Alexander: I got this book for Christmas and had finished it by the time we got home after the holidays. This memoir tells the story of how the author set out to make the same bread recipe once a week for a year in hopes of finding the key to the perfect loaf. The project ends up taking him on quite the unexpected adventure, including a trip to a French monastery. William Alexander’s writing style is incredibly easy to read and weaves together useful information with humorous anecdotes in a way that made this book hard to put down. It will also make you very hungry for great bread, so be prepared.
2. Vermont Rolling Pins: Admittedly, it takes a special 25-year-old to ask for a rolling pin from her boyfriend for Christmas. Luckily for me, Boyfriend is used to my bizarre quirks and didn’t even blink when I sent him the link to the Vermont Rolling Pins website with the message, “Hint, hint.” These rolling pins are all hand turned and shaped from a solid piece of maple, cherry, or walnut hardwood. These pieces are not just functional – they’re beautiful, too! Boyfriend got me the French rolling pin in maple, and we have already decided to display it in the kitchen instead of storing it in a drawer (the site also carries a variety of displays, including hand-forged hooks, for showing off your new pin). The pin also came with a handwritten note thanking us for our purchase – you know you are dealing with a small business when that happens! We are already discussing which pin we want to get next.
They’re turning us into rolling pin collectors. Because we weren’t weird enough before.
Follow Vermont Rolling Pins on Facebook.
3. Tigist leather clutch from FashionABLE: Ok, you caught me. I’m basically just telling you what I got for Christmas. BUT really, this piece is amazing! fashionABLE is a company with the mission of creating sustainable business for Africans and empowering women by providing them with rewarding jobs. This leather clutch is gorgeous, and big enough to carry all of your essentials. It even has little spaces for your ID/credit cards so they don’t just have to float around – one of my least favorite things about carrying clutches. The dark brown leather is beautiful and this is a handcrafted piece that I can’t wait to pair with a ton of outfits.
4. Better Life Bags: I mentioned BLB a while back, but wanted to bring them up again for all of my new readers. Better Life Bags is another small business that gives back in a big way. Owned by the darling Rebecca (who, incidentally, grew up in my hometown…small world!), BLB provides jobs to first-generation immigrant women in the Detroit community who would otherwise be unable to work outside the home. From the BLB website: “We rent them a sewing machine and tools while teaching them a skill set that allows them to become a primary or secondary provider in their families. Each bag is lovingly made with their hands and each purchase gives respect and dignity to their lives.” Wow. Every time I read that it gives me goosebumps.
Not only is Rebecca making a difference in her community, she is making gorgeous, functional bags that are totally customizable with tons of great fabric and leather choices. I bought my first BLB over a year ago and have carried it literally every day, and it is only now starting to look a little “loved”. I received the Lydia DSLR Camera Bag for my birthday, and love it. It is huge, which means that I have plenty of room to carry my wallet/phone/lipgloss in addition to my camera stuff, and have some space to grow as I (hopefully) buy more lenses and such. I just ordered a Beverly bag as my new purse and cannot wait to receive it!
5. Mexican food: Ok. Yes, I have always loved Mexican food. I mean, c’mon…carbs, beans, and cheese. You can’t go wrong. But since Boyfriend moved in, we have started making Mexican food for dinner probably
once twice a week. On average. Our repertoire has grown from steak tacos and burritos to include enchiladas and taquitos as well. We rarely make things the same way twice, but I promise you, recipes will be coming soon. (I also owe you Boyfriends meatball recipe. Holy yum.)
I was in no way compensated for this post – I just really love these companies and want to share that with my readers! All opinions are 100% my own.