just a few gift ideas…

by | Nov 23, 2018 | a slice of life, Favorite Things | 17 comments

First of all, Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope you had a wonderful holiday with your friends and family.  In the spirit of thanks, I need to take a quick minute to say thank you!  Whether you’re brand new, you just hop on here once in a while for a tutorial or specific information, or you’ve been following my journey for years, thank you for reading my blog and for joining me on this journey.  This blog would be just a very time-consuming journal without you!

I am not a rabid black Friday shopper.  Maybe I should be.  Maybe I’m missing out. I might troll the internet to see if something I wanted to buy anyway is on sale, but I’m not going to wait in line for doors to open, so I can race to get the latest and greatest deal.

For those who are like me and take Black Friday at a more leisurely pace, I thought I would share a few things that I enjoyed over the past year that might work for someone on your Christmas list (or to put on your own list).

I shared an entire post on these last December, but I get a Wallace Bell every year.  I received a few from my Oma’s collection that she started in the 1970’s and I’ve been adding to it each year.  The current year’s bell is usually around $40.  Last year, I picked up several bells for $10-15/each, but this year as I’m searching, the used bells are $25-50/each.  Some bells are outrageous, especially the sterling bells.  I just buy the silver plated ones and try to find years I don’t have that are reasonably priced.  This is a fun gift for baby showers, first Christmases, wedding gifts, etc. as well.  You can even get them monogrammed or engraved.  (We have my boy’s initials engraved on their birth year bells.)

You can find Wallace Bells from years past HERE on Etsy or HERE on eBay.

Last year was the second year I ordered this Bay Leaf Wreath.  It is beautiful and smells amazing.   This is a nice gift to have shipped directly to someone who has everything.

I love art supplies and this has been one of my favorite purchases this year.   It’s a well-made, Leather brush/pencil wrap and it would be a great gift for anyone who loves writing, sketching, drawing, painting, etc.  You can even have it customized, so it could fit something like crochet or knitting needles, etc.

Along those same lines, I also love this hand-bound Leather watercolor journal.  I found it hard to find a nice leather journal with watercolor-weight paper, until I came across this one.  It would be a good journal for any kind of mixed media, since the paper can support glues, washes, etc.

If anyone else on your list wants something leather, a wallet, purse, pencil pouch, messenger bag, etc, you will want to check out Officina Della Pelle.  I purchased several things from them while I was in Lucca, Italy.  Everything in their store is beautiful and you can get it monogrammed.  (They have an online store and they ship to the US.)


Some of my favorite necklaces and bracelets are from Madewell.  They are all well-designed and always adjustable, so you can wear them short or long depending on your outfit.  I got the Adjustable Ring Choker Necklace for Christmas last year and it’s one of my go-to necklaces.  Use code “DEALWITHIT” to get 25% off your purchase.

And, that’s it!

If you want all of the codes and deals, you’ll have to go elsewhere.  I hope this small list of things that I have bought and loved this year will give you some ideas, though…

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.


  1. Becca

    Did you use the Bay leaves from last year’s wreath for cooking during the year? I’m just wondering if they’re treated with something for use as a wreath, or if they are edible after the Christmas season. I haven’t clicked through, just wanted to hear about your experience with the wreath. It’s beautiful.

    Thank you for your inspiring posts throughout the years.

  2. Kate

    The etsy links to the leather pouch and book are not working.

  3. Sharon

    I have purchased several wreaths the last couple years from McFadden Farms and love them. They are organically grown and yes, I use them. Mostly I have a little shell I put a few in and set fire to them! Keeps away some insects and also makes me feel good!

  4. Paula Gooding

    Hi, The links you posted are not working. Thanks

    • Marian Parsons

      Oh, sorry! There must’ve been some technical issues with the links. They are working now.

  5. iio

    D. Leonardt & Co are still in business and everyone over this side of the pond who wants something interesting to keep their wooden spoons in has a marmalade pot like yours. I have several. They’re 2 a penny here. 🙂

  6. Andrea

    I also ordered the gorgeous bay leaf wreath and do use them in cooking. Come to think of it, I also bought the shutters you recommended, and couple of linen dresses I’m delighted with from Linenbees on Etsy. They are my favorite teacher outfit with pockets for phone and keys, so comfy & easy to jazz up with a scarf and bracelet arm party.

  7. Marlene Stephenson

    Thank you for these great ideas.

  8. Becca

    Good to know about being able to use the wreath leaves for cooking, just wish the link would work. Has Etsy maybe been overloaddd today?

  9. Colleen A Tumulty

    I want to thank you for all the great ideas you have given us. I am still enjoying things I got from your yard sale. I have my living room tree in the basket skirt and love it. I am so blessed to have a chance to meet you Jeff your mom and your darling boys. I don’t know how your mom survives without seeing them as much. Love in Jesus Colleen

  10. Helene

    I just purchased 2018 Wallace at Macy’s…$34 on black Friday🤗❄️💐

    • Marian Parsons


  11. Lynn Steinebach

    Love all your favorites!! Would love to buy that beautiful brush case for my artist granddaughter however the link doesn’t seem to work for me. Do you know what business on Etsy that you bought it from?

    • Marian Parsons

      So strange that the link isn’t working, because it works for me when I test it. The shop is Vensk Leather and they make beautiful cases for pencils and brushes. I have bought a few things from them.

      • Lynn

        Thank you Marian,

        I did find them with some research and have placed an order.

  12. Mary

    Do you have the names of the etsy shops for the handmade paintbrush roll and leather covered water color journal? The links don’t work and this is the perfect gift for a very special artist on my list.


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Marian Parsons - Miss Mustard Seed

I’m Marian, aka Miss Mustard Seed, a wife, mother, paint enthusiast, lover of all things home and an entrepreneur, author, artist, designer, freelance writer & photographer.  READ MORE to learn more about me, my blog and my business…

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