Thursday, November 07, 2013

7 on the 7th: warm, cozy comforts

Happy November Y'all! I love this month. Since reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp, I am trying to keep thankfulness always at the forefront of my mind. However, I can't help but think about being grateful even more during this month. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays, second only to Christmas. The combination of faith, family, friends, and food is just perfect to me. 

I also love the coolness of this time of year. I joke--but really I mean it--with Dustin that I will cancel out the air conditioning I use during the summer by not running the heat in the winter. As much as I love summer, my sensitivity to heat makes me enjoy cooler seasons a bit more. A couple of weeks ago at the little family-owned grocery store near us, the lady ringing up our purchases told us that we were in for a bad winter. She said the nut trees have been overflowing with nuts this year and the squirrels have been scurrying around even more collecting and storing them for the winter. Isn't it neat that nature can give us clues to what is coming? I just love that. Hopefully it won't be too bad!

For this month's 7 on the 7th I thought I would share some of my favorite warm, cozy comforts. Since the nights are getting longer and the air is getting cooler, I thought it was a perfect time for these favorites.

1. mug sweaters
I have seen mug sweaters all over Pinterest and Instagram for several months. I think they are the cutest.   Dustin's Nana started making them a couple of weeks ago, and even taught me how. I still have a ways to go, but I was so excited! Not only do they keep your tea or coffee or soup warmer, they protect your hands from getting too hot. I love the color they add to mugs as well! 

2. our wedding quilt
Dustin's mom, great aunt, and grandmother made a quilt for us when we got married. I was absolutely thrilled when they asked if I would like one. Of course this old soul would! I have loved having such a beautiful, sentimental piece of art that warms our feet and hearts. At first, I kept it on a quilt rack because I didn't want anything to happen to it. Lately though I have been curling up in it regularly. I want it to be used and enjoyed. It is so pretty on the rack, but I love it even more wrapped around my legs while I drink a cup of tea on the couch. One of my favorite parts of the quilt is a little patch on the back where Aunt Bobbie wrote that the quilt was made with love for Dustin and I--such a sweet gift that we will cherish forever. 

3. hot tea
I am a coffee girl through and through. When I was younger, I would stay with my Nana and have "little girl coffee"-- milk, sugar, and a little bit of coffee. As any true Southerner, I love tea as well. For most of my life, I thought tea was only supposed to be iced and syrupy sweet. I can't lie, the "House Wine of the South" is still one of my favorites. However, a few years ago on a mission trip in Northern Ireland, my love affair with hot tea began. Since then, I regularly enjoy hot tea of kinds-- chamomile, peppermint, earl grey, chai, and more. In addition to the cozy comfort hot tea provides, there are nutritional benefits as well. The antioxidants in tea can help fight a wide range of cancers, while also keeping you hydrated. The lower caffeine levels compared to a cup of java are a positive aspect as well. The tannins in tea can interfere with iron absorption so for those with anemia it would be best to limit your tea intake and avoid consuming hot tea with meals. Also, it is important to check the labels of the tea that you purchase-- there are many varieties of teas that are not pure tea leaves, but rather a blend of tea and artificial ingredients.  Rather than reaching for a spoonful of sugar, try a bit of local honey to sweeten your tea. You'll love it!

4. fireplaces
Who doesn't love a fireplace!? They scream warm, cozy comfort! This photo is the fireplace at my dad and Karen's house. Don't you love the festive mantle as well? In addition to the practicality of a fireplace, I love the look of them. Fireplaces give me a feeling of relaxation like no other! 

5. soup
Soup is food for the soul, just like the popular book title says. They warm you from the inside out. When the air gets cooler, I immediately start craving soups-- vegetable, potato, chili, chicken and rice-- I love pretty much all of them! Soups can easily become unhealthy with excess calories, fat, and sodium, but they don't have to be! I recently tried Bobbi's African Red Bean and Sweet Potato Soup and loved it! This soup is full of flavor and real ingredients. My philosophy when it comes to eating is that the foods and items without an ingredient list are the best, but when choosing ones that do have labels, go for the ones that have the shortest list with words you recognize and pronounce. This recipe fits right in with my philosophy!

6. cuddly puppies and husband
I am a "cuddler" by nature. Physical touch is definitely one of my love languages-- I really do have a blend of them. I am never more content than when my sweet puppies are in my lap and my husband is right beside me. Callie and Chloe, our adorable fur babies, are the sweetest. Mr. Curtsinger is pretty sweet as well! When my lap is full from two pups cuddling up, my heart overflows.

7. {Psalm 119:76}
May your unfailing love be my comfort, according to your promise to your servant.
More than mug sweaters, quilts, hot tea, fireplaces, soup, and cuddly puppies, God's unfailing and unending love is the ultimate comfort my heart desires. I am so thankful for His Word and the peace and life it gives. Like my favorite soup warms my belly, my relationship with Christ warms my heart. I want to seek Him first for comfort and contentment in all circumstances.

What warms your heart and soul? I would love to hear your favorite cozy, comforts!

Have a blessed, cozy day! 

No comments:

Post a Comment