Thursday, February 27, 2014

the wonder of - quotes on books



Tonight seems like a splendid night to post quotes about books. For quotes are jolly, and books are even better. Don't you agree?

I am in a particularly book-reading mood tonight, but unfortunately studying is at the top of my list (and alas, not the book reading type of studying).

So please enjoy some quotes on books by fantastic peoples. And should you have a moment, I'd love to hear what sort of books (I'll accept articles too) you're currently reading. 

QUOTES ON BOOKS: 
heads up, a lot of the quotes may or may not be from by C.S. Lewis

>> You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.” 
C.S. Lewis 

 >>One can never have enough socks," said Dumbledore. "Another Christmas has come and gone and I didn't get a single pair. People will insist on giving me books.” 
J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone 

 >> A good novel tells us the truth about its hero; but a bad novel tells us the truth about its author.” 
G.K. Chesterton, Heretics 

 >> A children's story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children's story in the slightest.” 
C.S. Lewis 

 >> Many people, myself among them, feel better at the mere sight of a book.” 
Jane Smiley, Thirteen Ways of Looking at the Novel 

 >> Some day you will be old enough to start reading fairy tales again.”
C.S. Lewis 

 >> The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.” 
Jane Austen 

 >> It is a good rule after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between.” 
C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

RECIPE || Banana Oat Pancakes (Gluten Free)




Golden and fluffy whole grain, wheat-free banana pancakes with sweet, creamy interiors. A delicious and healthy, naturally sweetened breakfast for lazy mornings (or any morning, noon, or night).

INGREDIENTS:
 2-3 small bananas (9.5 ounces), mashed
 2 tablespoons of butter, melted
 1 tablespoon lemon juice
 1 teaspoon honey or maple syrup (depends on what kind of sweet taste you are looking for)
 2 eggs
 1 cup oat flour*
 ½ teaspoon baking soda
 ½ teaspoon salt
 ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
 ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
INSTRUCTIONS:
  1. In a small mixing bowl, stir together the mashed bananas, butter, lemon juice, and honey or maple syrup.
  2. Beat in the eggs.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the oat flour, baking soda, salt, and spices.
  4. Pour wet mixture into the dry mixture. With a big spoon, stir just until the dry ingredients are thoroughly moistened. Do not overmix!
  5. Let the batter sit for 10 minutes. You may want to thin out the batter a bit with a touch of milk or water. << I added about ¼cup of Almond milk to my mixture.
  6. Heat a heavy cast iron skillet/non-stick pan over medium-low heat, or heat an electric griddle to 350 (medium) degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly oil the surface with coconut oil, butter or cooking spray. Even if you're using a non-stick pan, adding a little butter (my choice of "oil") to the pan is a good idea because it creates a really pleasant buttery outside to your pancakes.
  7. Once the surface of the pan is hot enough that a drop of water sizzles on it, pour ¼ cup of batter onto the pan/griddle. Let the pancake cook for about 3 minutes, until bubbles begin to form around the edges of the cake.
  8. Once the underside of the pancake is lightly golden, flip it with a spatula and cook for another 90 seconds or so, until golden brown on both sides. You may need to adjust the heat up or down at this point.
  9. Serve the pancakes immediately! 
:: NOTES ::
♦ Adapted from Cookie + Kate.♦ Yields about 9-10 pancakes.
♦ These pancakes are gluten-free, in so much as you use certified gluten-free oat flour or certified gluten-free old-fashioned oats.
♦ *To make oat flour out of old-fashioned oats (or quick oats), simply pour your selected amount of oats into a food processor or blender and blend until it is ground well. One cup before and after grinding measures just about the same. << An interesting tip I picked up from experience. This oat flour batter is definitely thicker than most, so it’s more difficult to gauge when the pancakes are ready to flip. A note from Kate: I learned that it’s easier to go by the timer: set it for for 3 minutes for the first side, then flip and wait another 90 seconds for the other side to finish. The time will vary depending on your temperature setting, but that’s about the time it should take for pancakes that are fully cooked and golden on each side. The consistency and outcome of your pancakes depends on what system you use to cook it with/on (griddle, pan, oven etc). I used a pan the first time making these, and they turned out not quite as fluffy as when I used a griddle. The importance with these pancakes is the heat they are cooked on. Medium-low to low heat is best for a pan, and medium for a griddle. There is always room for improvement when baking, so if you've learned any new or interesting tips for this recipe I'd love to hear them!


Enjoy these fluffy, sweet and spiced, delicious pancakes!

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2013 Charity Klicka Photography

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Late Night Muses - Formerly Lists



Formerly lists as in relation to the past two weeks. A musings of my current life.

Songs I've been listening to (pretty often)
Leaving Eden by Brandon Heath
Love Me Again by John Newman
Young Dumb And In Love by Matt Kearney
Soldier by Gavin DeGraw
Who We Are by Imagine Dragons
O Sleep (feat. Ray Lamontagne) by Lisa Hannigan
Beside You by Phildel, James McWilliams
Somewhere Only We Know by Lily Allen

Books I am Reading (when I have the time)
The Style of a Law Firm by Anne Hobson Freeman
The Man Who Was Thursday (reading again!) by G.K. Chesterton
Heart of the Sea by Nathaniel Philbrick
A Better Freedom by Michael Card
Guest of Honor by Deborah Davis
Whose Body? - Lord Peter Wimsey by Dorothy L. Sayers

Things I should be doing right now
Sleeping
Prepping for an exam I've got to take in a few hours
Sleeping
and did I mention sleeping?

Oddities on my bed stand

Notebook pages of mused writings on a manner of things
Stack of index cards
Mint chocolate scented candle from my sis (smells ahhmazing)
Future adventure story synopsis (about 6 pages of in-the-moment inspiration)
24+ books (ask me which ones :)

Future Blog Posts (within the next week)
Summer Bucket List - 2014
Gluten-Free Banana Oat Pancakes - RECIPE
Pride and Prejudice PARTY Details (REVISED - and with lots of goodies!)


So, these are my formerlies. What are some of your lists?

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography

Friday, February 21, 2014

February Muses - LINKS


This new year has been quite a thrilling one, all things considered. And not just thrilling for me, but also it seems for the world. What with the Seahawks absolutely decimating the Broncos 43-8, the Olympics in Sochi (and all that comes with it, #SochiProblems), the horrific and heartbreaking events in Kiev, all this crazy weather the east coast has been getting, and numerous other big headline news stories. 

Well to add to all that, I've compiled a small list of less significant (much less significant) events and reads that I've found interesting. So stay a minute or two, and browse my indie link selections.

My Findings (L to R, top to bottom):

1. I have been browsing (and loving) some new typographic quotes. Love the lettering and text of this particular one: Running Into Your Arms - Wilderness Love (WL Music) [2013] From the album “Awake My Soul” by Wilderness Love.

2. This is an incredibly horrific and heartbreaking before and after shot of Keiv's Independence Square. << It just makes you think...and personally, it reminds me to be thankful for the democratic government we have in place (despite all the problems we do have with it). It also burdens my heart to see such devastation, but furthermore reminds me that we have a God who cares. We often think, why do bad things happen to good people? But that's just it, there was only one good person and he died for us.
"Why do bad things happen to good people? That only happened once, and He volunteered." -R.C. Sproul Jr
It's for us to look to God and trust Him in those difficult and overwhelmingly hard times. I don't know why God has allowed so much hurt and turmoil in Kiev, other than that we are sinners. But truly it isn't my place to wonder why, it is my place to simply trust him with it and to lift up Kiev in prayer.

^Sorry about that little spiel right there, I think my heart is just profoundly heavy.

3. Really interesting Economist article about using words properly. Definitely an interesting read // Johnson: Lexical Clean-Ups. If you're interested, I'd love to discuss this article with you.

4. A really fantastic interview from Archery 360 with one of my beautiful, dear friends Emy // Emily Hyland: "I Don't Know How Katniss Does It". You've also got to watch the video embedded in the post, featuring Emy and talking about how anyone and everyone can do archery. #Adventure, anyone?

5. This is a very interesting read from Andy Greenwald (Grantland) on the BBC TV series Sherlock and it resurrection of series with its 3rd season. Greenwald discusses how Sherlock belongs to each of us, and the correlations between the timeless classic and the modern retelling. Be sure to take a look // ‘Sherlock’: Resurrection: The miraculous return of television's true detective.

6. I've been particularly longing (my own sehnsucht) after the sea the past few days. What with the weather being a wonderful mix of frosty, rainy, and foggy (probably 3 of my favorite types of weather), I've had the great urge to travel to the seashore and drink in the fresh, cold, and salty air. All that to say, I'd like to share with you some of my wanderlust through some inspiring images of the sea (and all things related). The particular image in the collage above is one I took of the book cover of The End of Barbary Terror (one of the books I read for my book challenge).
"The cure for anything is saltwater — sweat, tears, or the sea." -Isak Dinesen
7. "The terror of poverty lies in the poor person's vulnerability to violence." << Yet despite this, we have the opportunity to CHANGE THEIR EVERYDAY! How, you ask, can we change their everyday? By awakening the world to the hidden plague of violence! The Locust Effect is a book by Gary Haugen (President and CEO of IJM) and Victor Boutros is an eye-opener to the atrocious forms of social injustice happening worldwide. More specifically, it addresses the issue of violence, and how the end of poverty requires the end of violence. Please just take a minute to read more about the Locust Effect. And for anyone who is interested in justice, I HIGHLY recommend you pick up this book!

8. This is a video about an honest conversation on Beauty and Body image by SoulPancake + Darling Magazine >> We truly need more of this!

9. Here's a really fantastic desk I found through Pinterest, of course! ;) I could see myself doing some serious creating at this desk


And there you are! Enjoy all these wonderful, obscure links! Please feel free to comment about anything having to do with anything I just posted or said. I welcome comments, discussion, questions, and creativity!

all the best,
All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2013 Charity Klicka Photography, or sourced appropriately through aforementioned links.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Q&A | Your Questions, Answered


I love LOVED receiving all your questions these past few weeks! There were some deliciously excellent ones in the batch, and of which I had immense fun answering. If you didn't get a chance to ask your questions, it's never too late! Send 'em on in!

Thank you all for participating! You, people, are just fantastic!

QUESTIONS, ANSWERED.


1. Literary character with whom you most identify with?

My word, that's a hard one. Most exceptionally hard. I would say that Lord Peter Wimsey would be the character I wish I most identified with: his charisma, charm, and wit are exceedingly desirable (read my few inspired muses about Lord Peter Wimsey). However, I'd have to go with a mix of Syme from The Man Who Was Thursday and Jo from Little Women

2. Favorite founding father?

George Washington, no doubt about it. But James Madison and John Adams come awfully close. 

3.  Tea or Coffee?

Need you ask? Tea, all the way!

4. Your fashion taste is one word:

Dapper = for guys. Understated = for girls. Although my fashion tastes vary.

>> Here are some great ideas of my kind of fashionstyle. It is really a mix of dapper, classy, understated, funky, and vibrant styles. I am in love with textures (plaids, corduroy, tweeds, wools), I love sweaters (fisherman, cable knit), boots, blazers, tall socks, coats (trenches, peacoats, army, high collars) plaids, scarves (of the wool, plaid variety), trousers, wellies, vests, henleys, and comfy tees >> and just about anything striped (within reason), plaid, tweed, geometric print, and with elbow patches...

5. When/how did you become passionate about the human trafficking issue?

I started getting interested in the issue of human trafficking when I was about 15 (I wish it had been sooner). I learned that human trafficking is also known as modern day slavery, and that it is an atrocious form of social injustice that happens daily worldwide. I was filled with so much sadness and pain at the thought of people who are forced to do hard labor, to sell their bodies for profit, and who aren't able to stand up for themselves. I decided then and there that I would be their voice. I don't have a lot of money or influence, but I have a voice. And that's more than most of them have. I knew that with my dying breath I would fight for their freedom, for their lives. And to the best of my ability, I am fighting human trafficking through raising awareness and funds to combat it; through educating myself and others on the atrocious forms of injustice; and through prayer. I truly don't know what it's like to live until I give my life for someone else.

6. Ever left the country?

Yes, I've been to Canada twice. As for actually over-the-sea traveling, I've been to Germany, Luxembourg, and France. I am dying to visit Europe again, and you can be sure that when I do I will stay in Scotland for at least a good 2 weeks (and most certainly more, if I can spare the time). 

7. Tell me about your love of Scotland?

Oh my, where do I start? Truly, I can't even recall the beginning of my love for Scotland. I really do believe I am a Scot, deep down inside. I am truly in love with the culture, people, language, land, and traditions of Scotland. I love plaids, and green, rolling hills, and mountains, and waterfalls, and fresh air, and farmland, and earthyness. I love it all. I've been learning Scottish-Gaelic for 2+ years now, and can’t tell you how much I enjoy it. Tha mi a’ smaoineachadh falbh Gāidhlig <Ask me what that says! And almost more than anything, I hope to travel to Scotland someday. It is also a secret dream of mine to marry a Scotsman, if a suitable one be found, and have a destination wedding in Scotland. The whole idea of Scotland is one of my inconsolable sehnsuchts.

8. What is your favorite season? Why?

Autumn is my favorite season of the year (although Spring comes right after it), where I enjoy autumn smells, bright colored leaves, comfy sweaters, patched quilts, windy days, laced-up boots, long walks, and ever feel the pull of Lewis's Northerness.

9. I've got to ask: what's your favorite color?


Blue is by far my favorite color. Blue is so fresh, soothing, so alive. Plus the sky and sea are blue (in a manner of speaking), and those are two of my favorite things.

10. Current favorite read(s)?

So jolly glad you asked! I’ve really wanted to share with you all some of my favorite reads this month (end of Jan. to the middle of Feb.). A new read I picked up at my local thrift store is called The Style of a Law Firm: Eight Gentlemen from Virginia (by Anne Hobson Freeman). Despite its rather stuffy sounding title, it is actually an incredibly interesting and intriguing book! It’s a little nostalgic reading about the way the old times where, just a mere 100 years ago. Honor and respectability were in high esteem, and the style of a lawyer was much more respectable than what it has become.

Another new and absolute favorite read is The Locust Effect (by Gary Haugen). An incredible eye-opener book about how the end of poverty requires the end of violence. There are so many atrocious forms of social injustice happening worldwide, and many of them are directly related to violence. This book relates the horrific events, but also provides hope for the poor (and ways WE can do something about it).

And then three old favorites I’ve picked up again this month are:
The Man Who Was Thursday (G.K. Chesterton),
Mere Christianity (C.S. Lewis), and
Lord Peter Wimsey (Dorothy L. Sayers)
These 3 are some of my ABSOLUTE favorite reads.

11. Do you have niecelings and nevvies?

Oh I wish! But with 3 sisters married, the prospect of having little nieces and nephews running (or crawling) around isn't too distant. 

12. Have you seen Miss Potter?

I have seen Miss Potter. And although it's been a bit of a while since I've had the pleasure of viewing that particular film, I can recall that after watching it I was filled with an ever growing desire to paint, and write, and repeat. I think it was around that time that painting for me became more than an item on my "wish list". 

13. Your ideal road trip?

My ideal road trip would be driving up the east coast with my best friend(s), drinking iced tea and blaring country and/or indie music all the way. We’d stay a day or two in the northern states (Massachusetts, Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont): eating crab, donning sweaters and textured trousers, wearing tall boots and beanie hats, and I'd always have my camera in hand. I'd bring a Polaroid and a journal especially for the trip, to document all the adventures.

14. Do you write, besides blogging?

Oh yes. Although my writings consist of your typical types, I have written a few short stories (I prefer writing short stories over novels, most of the time), as well as a boatload of poetry. I also greatly enjoy philosophical writings (and may or may not have a blog completely dedicated to this that is completely anonymous). I also LOVE writing analytic pieces on a range of topics. Writing, I have found, is a grand way to express your thoughts (who knew?), and I mainly use this blog as a form of expressing my aspirations, inklings, and all the "stuff" that goes on in my mind.

15.  Awesome trench-coat or new leather boots?

Oo, that's a hard one. As much as I like both, I'd have to go with awesome trench-coat (think Sherlock). Besides, if I had leather boots I'd want them well-worn and not spanking brand new.

16. Most inspiring story you have ever heard?

Now this question is quite nearly impossible. I have heard so many amazing stories about hope and healing, adventure and finding oneself, forgiveness and grace, justice and standing up for the oppressed...there are so many amazing stories that have left their unforgettable mark on my life that I don't think I could chose just one. 

17. Do you watch crime/detective shows? If so, what is your favorite?

I do! Crime/detective is about the only TV show genre I do watch. My current favorites are Castle, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Leverage, Hawaii 5-0, and Foyle's War. 

18.  Thing you are most looking forward to this year (2014)?

Oh, hmm, let me think. Well for one, I look forward to the new and unexpected adventures that await me this year! 2013 was quite a year, filled with plenty of change and a liberal dose of trust, faith, and joy. So I am thinking 2014 is going to also be bringing a lot of trusting and joy, but also some new (and exciting?) changes. I've got a few devious plans up my sleeve (of which I can’t disclose yet), and I will be starting/entering some new seasons in life. Moving, transferring to a 4-year college (with two associate’s degrees), job changes, a wedding, and becoming an aunt are all expected changes in the next year!

19. Are you allergic to anything?

Yes, rather unfortunately. I am not privileged with a fast metabolism and jolly good immune system that can cope with all manner of lovely foods. Gluten (or what is supposed as a gluten intolerance) and dairy, among others, I seldom consume. But I regard such allergies as a challenge to live more deliberately in the life I've been given. 

20. Favorite genre of books?

I’d have to say historical, historical fiction, and mystery. Once in a while I'll pick up a fiction piece (Phantases by George MacDonald, anyone?), but only when I have more time to spare. Historical anything is my favorite. Check out my library for more muses. 

21. What are you passionate about? What drives you?


Seeking justice: defending the orphan, widow, and the oppressed (Is. 1:17). Ultimately what drives me is the unconditional love of my Saviour, and that pushes me to give up my life to serve Him through every single thing I do. I also take incredible inspiration from the sea: sailboats, sea air, adventures, danger and courage, a life lived vibrantly, and the courage to trust our sovereign God with the unknown.

22. Why do you love taking photos?


Oh I love taking photographs! I see photography as a way to engage with the people and cultures around me. It is a way to put myself into others' shoes and to really get outside of my comfort zone. I've experienced so many stories through the art of photography, and there is always room for growing and experiencing life vibrantly through photography.

23. 
Can you fake an accent and (more importantly) do you?


Absolutely! Although I don't consider myself an excellent speaker of a variety of accents, I can pretty regularly speak in an English (that is, the European variety) of refined and cockney, Irish, Scottish, Russian, Swedish/Scandinavian (when the moment arises), Italian, and French. I'd like to say I can do a Yorkshire accent, or perhaps Australian. But apart from a few words in each, I am not graced with the speakings of such accents (peoples). As for do I fake such accents? Absolutely! If I were to meet you for the first time, and under the assumption that I would probably never see you again, you can almost guarantee I'd slip into one of the accents above (specifically English, French, or Russian). I consider this sort of thing (assuming another accent while around strangers) as a way to mix-up and add a little adventure to an otherwise typical day.

24. Tell me about your love for books?

Well, I collect old books, particularly favorite classics or history books. I greatly enjoy drinking a good cup o’ tea, snuggling in a comfy quilt, and a reading a good book. I read for pleasure, but I also enjoy reading to learn; such as biographies, maps and graphs, textbooks (yes, even those), analytic studies, timelines, statistics, do-it-yourself(s), and so forth. I am an avid reader of historical work, and would take a historical fiction novel over any other kind, any day. Good, logical, thinking mysteries are among my favorite genres to read. It is nearly impossible to pull me away from a good book.

In summation, I am an avid reader and bibliophile in the entirety of the definition. 


>> Woo, that was exhausting yet jolly good fun answering all those questions! I think you might be able to better understand now where I'm coming from both in my actions and in my writings.


sincerely,
All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography

P.S. I'll add on a few questions to this post, when good ones are sent in. 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Steampunk Inspiration - PHOTOSHOOT MUSES


So, although very belated, I am finally planning for and doing my senior shoot! I graduated Spring 2013, but wasn't able to do my shoot until this year (March). I am quite incredibly stoked. 

And guess who my photographer is? If you've been following along on this blog, than you'll know I am interning with Jewel Peach Photography. It has been an absolutely fantastic experience, and I've learned so many useful and insightful photography tips, tricks, and muses. More importantly, Jewel has become a very dear heart to me. So yes, you guessed it! The incredible Jewel Peach is going to be the photographer for this shoot! :: commence partying :: I'm really darn exited, and so blessed that Jewel is doing this for me. 

Stay tuned for shots from the actual shoot sometime in March! And while you are waiting, get excited over a few steampunk muses I've put together for the shoot.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

4 Ways to Love a Little More this Valentines (Part 4 of 4)


4. Get into the Valentine's Day SPIRIT. 

A few ways I've found to get into the Valentine's Day spirit:

      a. Listen to some classical music (all these are on Spotify): Joshua Belle (Violinist, just splendid music), Josh Groban (favorite album this Valentines: Illuminations), Russell Watson (Love Story), Jonathan and Charlotte (La Prima Volta), The Tenors (Lead with your Heart album), and others. If you have any favorite classical listens, I'd love to hear them!

     b. Create some love themed artwork or writings. I've found that painting in reds and pinks, with hearts and swirls, or any other love-inspired themes as greatly helped me to get into the love and giving spirit of Valentines. A plus would be to create some artwork/writings and give it away to your friends, or strangers.

      c. Bake. Try baking some yummy sweet treats (tarts, fudges, sweet cakes, etc) for your family, friends, or just for yourself. Let that sweet aroma fill your week this Valentines.

      d. Read stories/poems of love. Don't just pick up a sappy romance novel from you local bookstore. Try instead to read stories of true love: charitable love, brotherly love, unconditional and selfless love, etc. Check out Joe Wheeler's Heart to Heart series (specifically Heart to Heart Love Stories) for some old and beautiful stories of love. Have any suggestions for good love stories?

Also be sure to check out: PART 1PART 2, PART 3

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography

GIVEAWAY + 4 Ways to Love a Little More this Valentines (Part 3 of 4)

3. DO a VALENTINES Challenge (and GIVEAWAY) (borrowed from Sincerely Kinsey): 

I'm made this "Random Acts of Kindness" list I plan on accomplishing during the week of February 14th! It would be fantastic if you joined me on this challenge!

1. Send a hand-written letter to your best friend.

2. Buy the coffee/lunch for the person behind you in the drive-through (this week I am going to intentionally go to a drive-through just so I can pay for someone's order).

3. Surprise a friend or co-worker with flowers!

4. Tip 100% of your bill

5. Visit a place you regularly go to (post office, grocery store, coffee shop, etc) but don't know the folks personally. Bring someone there a small gift (flowers, coffee, chocolate, card, etc), and tell them how you appreciate what they do.

6. Bring in some yummy baked treats for your co-workers

7. Email someone online whom you don't know, but who has inspired you in some way.

8. Bring in a little gift for the person who's cubicle/office is right next to yours (or who shares your work shift with you).

9. Create a piece of artwork or a poem (of the love variety), and give it to someone (stranger or someone you know).

10. And as my last act of kindness, I will be giving away a jolly package full of lovely things to one of you, my dear readers. Just leave a comment sharing how you have or are planning on showing a random act of kindness this Valentines. Or share a story of how someone else impacted your life by reaching out in love. The winner will be announced Monday the 17th!

Also check out PART 1, PART 2, PART 4

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography

4 Ways to Love a Little More this Valentines (Part 2 of 4)

2. Host a Valentine's Day Party/Bash/Celebration

I generally host the Valentine's "Tea" my family and I have every Valentine's DAY (or the weekend of Valentines). 

      a. Family or Husband/Wife Celebration ideas: Be creative with this celebration. Be sure to have plenty of lovely DIY projects (always adds a touch of handmade love to a jolly celebration), include some yummy munchies and at least one semi-elaborate Valentine's themed dessert, and a healthy dose of Valentine's decorations (all simple, but lovely). 

      b. If you don't have a lot of family close by, or aren't celebrating Valentines with them, try hosting a Valentine's bash during lunch hour at your office! When I first started working at HSLDA, I was invited to a monthly Lunch Bunch with a few ladies from the different departments (mine being Communications). It was a monthly lunch (usually during the middle of the month) where a bunch of ladies would get together at lunch hour, share yummy foods, and talk! <I loved it! But the lovely lady who hosted/planned  it (2 ladies were scheduled each month to bring the main meal, and the rest of the ladies brought sides/desserts) was also in charge of just about EVERYTHING to do with HR, and so had to opt out of hosting the Lunch Bunch. I loved it so much I decided to take on the job of hosting it, and have now been doing it for over a year! Anyway, all that to say, hosting a Lunch Bunch type Valentine's Day bash would be a splendid (and fairly easy) way to give a little more and to show a little more love this Valentines. 

>> Consider sending out a little email/event update to a few of the ladies you know in your office and ask them if they'd like to meet-up for lunch hour this Thursday (or the Monday after Valentine's Day) to celebrate Valentine's Day. You can make a simple main meal, and ask the ladies to bring a side or dessert. Added fun would ask the ladies to bring some handmade valentines (just for fun). 

Also check out PART 1, PART 3, PART 4

All text © 2014 Footprints in the Sand | All Images © 2014 Charity Klicka Photography