Hello! My name is Shannon Taylor. I'm a long-time writer and editor from Minnesota surprised to find myself on an island in the Pacific Northwest with my husband, three younger children (the oldest is attending college in Chicago), and two dogs.

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So what if instead of thinking about solving your whole life, you just think about adding additional good things. One at a time. Just let your pile of good things grow.
+ Rainbow Rowell

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Winter Fun

Archive for 'Christmas'

Christmas Favorites

Happy Epiphany! Since it’s still officially the Christmas season (for a few more minutes, anyway), is it all right if I share some of our favorite things from Christmas this year?
First up are these Gingerbread Cities from Better Homes and Gardens. We made one for ourselves and a few to give away. They took some […]


Snowman Gum

There’s so much to talk about and an entire year to plan for and think about, but before launching into any of that I have to show you the Snowman Gum. A young lady in Will’s class gave these to everyone for Christmas and I think they’re the cutest things ever. We only had time […]


DIY Pinecone Fire Starters

I spotted these pinecone fire starters in Hallmark’s The Christmas Book by Heidi Tyline King. Even though they looked simple enough (there was just a photo and some loose instructions), it took me awhile to get everything together. Which is why I’m posting about the fire starters after Christmas instead of before. But now we […]


Holiday Fun / Games for Groups

“Were there Uncles like in our house?” “There are always Uncles at Christmas. The same Uncles.”
—from A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas
My favorite holidays are a combination of the old and the new. There are traditions I can’t imagine doing without, like the Advent Box and Grandma’s cornflake cookies. But at the same time […]


Christmas Bliss / KitchenAid Mixer

I’m not exaggerating when I say that I’ve wanted a KitchenAid stand mixer for as long as I can remember. Something about that solid hunk of metal says “Serious Cook” to me like nothing else. And this year I finally got one, thanks to my sweet husband and a well-planned strategy using a pre-Christmas sale, […]


Merry Christmas from the Taylors!

It’s evening on Christmas Day and I’m feeling thankful for so many things. For friends who bring fun and excitement to every occasion. For family who can always be counted on to make the season bright. For children who gasp with excitement at beautiful Christmas lights and stockings filled to the brim. For a husband […]


Homemade Gingerbread Playdoh

I’m so glad I still have a little helper who gets excited about making things like homemade Gingerbread Playdoh. Lily and I made a batch using Sugarbelle’s recipe this morning. It filled the kitchen with a nice, Christmas-y scent and the warm dough was very relaxing to knead.
We played around with different packaging techniques and […]


Christmas Favorites / A Child’s Christmas in Wales

I had a great time delivering Christmas gifts to teachers and school staff yesterday and was feeling full of Christmas cheer. But by the end of the day I was also thinking: enough already. Which isn’t good because it’s not even Christmas yet.
And then I realized I hadn’t watched any of my favorite Christmas movies. […]


Scherenschnitte Angels

Have you heard of scherenschnitte? It’s the German name for a very old tradition of cutting paper into decorations. Grandma Marilyn (whose maternal grandfather was German) is a master of scherenschnitte (pronounced shear’ en-schnit-tah). She’s sold her creations for years and has even been asked to dress up in costume and give demonstrations at local […]


Snowball Soap (with a Hidden Surprise)

We discovered the wonders of Ivory soap at Will’s birthday party (it does cool things when you put it in the microwave). It also makes great snowball soaps with hidden toys inside. Lily and I made a bunch to give to friends for Christmas. Here’s what we did.

Step one: shred the soap. We used a […]

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