Back by popular demand after a brief hiatus, I am delighted to bring you a brand new collection of Favorite Things! I’m truly excited about these items, many of which are locally sourced and all of which have reasonable price points. From pet lovers to grandchildren and those who might simply enjoy a new book, snack food, or inspiring quote, there is truly something for everyone!
My favorite thing about March might just be the return of daylight saving time. The longer days mean we can get out for an after-dinner walk, and even though the weather can still be quite chilly, I feel like spring is in the air.
So join me on those evening walks (in spirit, anyway－and if you tell me you’re getting out, I’ll know that you’re with me😉). Please also join me for another fun installment of A Few of my Favorite Things!
📚 Favorite book of the month
Penned by Phil Knight, the founder of Nike, Shoe Dog, tells story of how the iconic company came to be and the colorful personalities that made it what is is today. Knight’s memoir details his tireless, never-give-up work ethic, along with his sometimes ethically questionable business practices. Knight is a gifted writer and his endlessly fascinating life story reads like a novel. I enjoyed the New York Times bestseller more than I ever expected and thought many times that it would make a fascinating docuseries.
(Paperback currently retailing for $16.99 at Barnes & Noble.)
🧸 Favorite gift for little ones
A special present for any little one, this soft and cuddly plush Here to Hug Bear provides a playful reminder that even though a favorite family member or friend isn’t around, they are always looking over them and loving them. Simply insert a photo in the protected front pocket! We love it for loved ones who may no longer be with us, friends that have moved away or for anyone that you don’t get to see as often as you’d like.
Retailing for $34, online ordering from Details is available, complete with complimentary gift wrapping and a note (simply mention in the checkout area and someone will be in touch). Free shipping for orders over $75. For those in Lancaster, PA, curbside and in-store pickup are available at checkout, and there is free local delivery to zip codes 17601, 17602, and 17603.
🧽 Favorite everyday kitchen item
Veggies Reusable Kitchen Sponges feature unique designs and make a practical purchase for yourself as well as a thoughtful gift for anyone who spends a lot of time in the kitchen. The sponges, which come in a set of 2 and retail for $14, have a patterned side and a mesh side for extra scrubbing. Plus they are machine washable for eco-friendly use over and over again!
Size: 3″w x 5″h
Materials: 100% cotton
Care Instructions: Machine Wash – Cold, Tumble Dry – Low,
🖼 Favorite keepsake
A silhouette of a child’s head is such a special keepsake, and I recently learned that a very talented acquaintance has made a small business out what has long been a hobby. Thinking the silhouettes would make a delightful gift for grandparents to give their children (in the near term, the parents would likely appreciate them more than their toddlers!), I asked Christina for details.
The hand-cut silhouettes are $40 each, unframed, with the option of vintage frames, as shown above. Though many people associate the silhouettes with the profiles of young children, Christina mentioned that she has also done older children in big families and it can be sweet to see the age range. She can also do pets! To find out more details or to order, you may contact Christina at firstname.lastname@example.org.
🍪 Favorite snack food update
It was going on 9:00 one night last week, when I heard a faint knock at my door. It was my sister-in-law, Melissa, who had gone to the grocery store after a long shift at the hospital. (She’s one of the countless amazing nurses who have been putting in long hours over the past year.) Melissa, who is gluten-free, handed me this package of gluten-free Double Stuf Oreos, saying, “You have to try these. They taste just like the originals!” And she was right.
The following day, I had a photo shoot in my kitchen, and the cookies were sitting on the counter. Nobody there was gluten-free, but they all tried－and went back for more, saying they were truly spot-on replicas of the originals. So for anyone who once enjoyed Oreos but can no longer eat gluten－or simply for those who want to do a side-by-comparison－these received enthusiastic thumbs up from all who tried. Melissa’s thoughtful, late-night delivery sure brought a lot of joy! (The cookies retail for $3.69, although prices may vary by store.)
To avoid any confusion for those with celiac disease, the company smartly imprinted the words “gluten free” into the traditional pattern on the chocolate cookie. One of my observant helpers noticed that detail. You have to look closely, but it’s there. ⇩⇩
💇♀️ Favorite hair accessory
One cannot underestimate the power of a good hair band! For those with long hair, these clever bands are fun, stylish, and they hold tightly without pulling your hair. Teleties are available in a wide variety of colors and styles, the price point is excellent, and they are durable. The company even has specialty lines that make these bands perfect for gift giving. With collections including camo, tie-dye, animal print, and collegiate, there is truly something for every medium- to long-haired person in this world! (Multi-pack prices range from $7.99 to $9.99 and there are also headbands and other accessories.)
👩🍳 Reader favorite kitchen of the month
In this Friday Facebook post, I asked what readers thought about the skylight and wall of windows, and generally speaking, how they rated this kitchen on a scale of 1-10? The responses were overwhelmingly positive, often mentioning its efficient layout and bright, cheerful appeal. The occasional critique centered around getting rid of the rug, curtains, or tea towels, all things that could be changed easily.
If you haven’t joined in on the Friday Facebook fun, I post a featured kitchen every Friday morning around 8:15 (Eastern time). It’s fun to read what people think about the various designs, and I welcome you to weigh in!
🍓🥦🍝Favorite Recipe of the Month
I’ve received much positive feedback about this Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole, which is an update on a childhood favorite and always a hit with my family. It’s lighter than the original, adds a crunchy topping, and includes several excellent substitutions for those with dietary restrictions. It’s also a great recipe to take to a friend in need, as you can prepare it in advance and it travels and reheats well. If you happen to make it, I’d love to know what you think!
I always love the kitchen feature every Friday, sometimes comment. Nice compilation of favorite things. There is always something new out there to learn, to use.
Thank you for your feedback. I’m glad you check in on the weekly Facebook kitchen posts as well!