My “Favorite Things” Small Business Gift List

Photo by Element5 Digital on

As we approach the Holidays and many people are already shopping for Christmas, I want to share some of my favorite shops (especially small businesses – as I choose not to shop big box this year or in the future for presents).

The Merry Bohemian – A lovely shop that sells hand-painted ornaments. These ornaments can be personalized with an image of a family home or a special landscape that brings fond memories.

The Merry Bohemian

Photo credit: The Merry Bohemian

St. Charbel Candle Co. – This beautiful shop just opened and the candles are selling out faster than hot cakes! These cleaning burning candles are a perfect gift for a hostess, a neighbor, or a close family member.

St. Charbel – Beeswax Candle Shop

Photo Credit: St. Charbel Candel Co.

Caelesti Handmade Co. – A special shop full of beautiful items for your baby, your godchild, or your little niece or nephew. They offer a variety of wood teethers, bonnets, onesies, and even clothing for adults.

Caelesti Handmade Co.

Beauty CounterMy favorite makeup and skin care lines! It’s clean beauty. It took me awhile to understand the necessity for clean products, but I have come to love so many products through Beauty Counter. These are truly remarkable Christmas and birthday gifts for family and friends. Beauty Counter offers products for women, men, and even children! It’s a one stop place for everyone on your gift list.

Beauty Counter

Photo Credit: Beauty Counter

Nordic Creamery – This family farm offers a variety of cheeses, butters, jams and Amish candies. Order a gift box for a family friend, so that they can enjoy cheeses directly from the Great Dairy State of Wisconsin!

Nordic Creamery

Photo Credit: Nordic Creamery

The Healing Place Farm – Enjoy natural, non-toxic items made through this small family farm, such as body products, diffuser oils, soaps, and gift items. The farm also offers items for sale that are made through like-minded companies. The Healing Place Farm offers Facebook live sales for purchase opportunities.

The Healing Place Farm

Photo credit: The Healing Place Farm

Florence Adams – This is one of my all-time favorite boutiques! It offers a variety of home decor, women’s apparel and accessories, candles, wall prints, baby items, and much more. This shop will be one of your favorites all year long!

Florence Adams

Photo Credit: Florence Adams

Flourish Toy Company – Handmade specialty kids toys for the little ones in your life.

Flourish Toy Company

Photo Credit: Flourish Toy Co.

Lynn Michelle Designs – This unique shop sells salvaged items, organic products, and vintage farmhouse decor. Purchase a piece that fits with your sibling’s personality and support this small business!

Lynn Michelle Designs

Photo Credit: Michelle Lynn Designs

Book Review: Bless Us, O Lord

If you are looking for a practical prayer book that is simplified for daily family use, Bless Us, O Lord is a great addition to your family’s resources.

I am always looking for additional ways to incorporate the Liturgical Year into the life of our family. A copy of Bless Us, O Lord was sent to me from Ave Maria Press and the author, Robert M. Hamma, does a fantastic job of including daily meal prayers with stories about the saints, prayers for specific feast and holy days, and Liturgical information. If you are looking for a practical prayer book that is simplified for daily family use, Bless Us, O Lord is a great addition to your family’s resources.

Photo Credit” DMHeckenkamp

October 2nd – The Feast of the Guardian Angels – Bless Us, O Lord (page 129) gives a short excerpt about the Guardian Angels and offers the following prayer.

“Loving God, we come together this evening to share this meal after a day filled with many activities. In our work and our play , in our travels and our rest, your presence is always with us. You give us the friendship of our guardian angels to guide us and guard us, to remind us of your presence, and to keep us on the right path. Help us to be aware that your love is ever near, and to be grateful for all the gifts that we receive from your generous hand, especially the gift of this meal. Amen.”

Book Review: Home in the Church by Jessica Ptomey

Do you know what warms my heart? What draws me in? A good book, but not just any good book – a book that embraces change. A book that shows a purpose, a struggle, but ultimately, a journey. This is exactly what Jessica Ptomey wrote about in her new book, Home in the Church: Living an Embodied Catholic Faith.

Ptomey’s journey from Protestantism to Catholicism exemplifies a beautiful conversion story as she found answers to deep spiritual questions alongside her husband. She delves into the beauty she experienced among her Protestant friends and churches, but ultimately, she found her true home in the Catholic Church with the sacraments, Holy Mass, the Catechism, and the ancient traditions.

Home in the Church will take the reader on a pilgrimage of conversion, love, and discovery. The book also provides other resources in which the reader may choose to delve deeper into the chapter themes. This Catholic conversion story is a vivid example of the work of the Holy Spirit upon souls so dearly loved by God and His desire for them to enter upon His earthly journey towards heaven.

@dmheckenkamp photo

Disclaimer: This review was not a paid sponsorship and is my own opinion. The book was gifted for review purposes.