My first awareness of a do-good brand supporting a social issue was Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream. I was too young to be impressed with anything other than their amazing ice cream but since their onset, they have adhered to their mission while still making amazing ice cream. Today, I am keenly aware of the social issues that brands get behind.
Are you thrifty? I have many childhood memories of my uncle going to garage sales and coming home with a bunch of stuff that did not seem useful at all. But he was extremely talented and could take almost any item and upcycle it to use as something else. Up until last year, I had not heard of the term upcycling.
I am not sure if you noticed, but charcuterie boards are all the rage. My young adult daughters have been making charcuterie boards for years. My nephew has one almost every Friday with wine (according to his IG stories); he loves them so much, I recently bought him a large bamboo cheese board with serving tools. Head to Instagram and search under #charcuterieboard and you are bound to see some works of art. A typical charcuterie, the word derived from the French words that mean flesh and cooked, consists of mainly meats and cheeses. These boards have progressed to some of the most decadent and sweet hot cocoa holiday charcuterie boards.
We are approaching what is considered to be the happiest time of the year...Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, other holidays, New Year’s… for many of us, it is a time of joy, reflection, and family. Holidays can also be a very difficult time for those who are alone and those who have lost someone. I was raised in a family that always welcomed friends to share in our family holiday time so now to be facing the holidays while trying to balance protecting our matriarchs in the family, is forcing us to redefine how we celebrate.
In case you did not already know, Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year even in Florida. Sure there is no fall foliage minus the brown palm fronds that seem to drop this time of year and, in my 48 years of living down here, the weather typically is in the high 70’s or low 80’s. Even with the lack of fall colors everywhere, the holiday still holds a special place in my heart. Throughout my entire life, my mom has always hosted Thanksgiving dinner. We were welcome to include friends that did not have a place to celebrate. My mom would find a way to make tables fit even if it meant moving furniture out of the way (that’s a whole other story).
I cannot believe that the holidays are approaching. For those that celebrate Hannukah, the first night is December 19th with Christmas less than a week later. I don’t know about you, but my email and actual mailbox, is filled with catalogs and discount coupons. Black Friday deals are out earlier than they have ever been. The shopping season has begun.
This was my first Hallmark experience so I had no idea they had a whole arsenal of movies. There were winter-themed movies, Valentine’s Day, of course, Spring, Summer, Wedding, Fall Harvest, and then the anticipated 7 night Thanksgiving event leading up to Christmas. I could now spend the entire year sucked into the Vortex of Hallmark.