The Southern Institute Community: Join the Discussion!

Join the discussion at The Southern Institute Community :

I have some ideas for this space that I call The Southern Institute. As the years have passed since I started this blog, I have changed and grown and so has this place. It’s just like life isn’t it? We don’t stay the same. We learn and we change our minds about things… we adopt new practices and habits in our lives and we want to talk about them with our friends! We want to share. We want community!

A dear blogging friend has encouraged me to start a group for all of us to come to; a place where students of life and creativity can connect and further discuss things like:

*what we are doing creatively
*health topics like essential oils and cooking healthy meals for our families
*parenting and motherhood
*taking care of ourselves

Basically everything that The Southern Institute is about and whatever else you have on your mind!

I’m calling it (drumroll please…) The Southern Institute Community! It will be a place where we can be free to talk like we would if we were all meeting in my living room over a cup of coffee.

I hope you’ll join me there, because I know how wonderful true, supportive community is. Click through either of the links in this post and request to be added…I’ll add you as soon as I see your request. Let’s make The Southern Institute Community a place that we can call our little home away from home.

Celebrate the Season with Handmade Winter, the new eBook and a Giveaway!

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I have been waiting for weeks to reveal something really exciting to all of you… I know you are going to LOVE IT!  Handmade Winter { A Season to Gather, Make, and Share } is a new eMagazine that I have the honor of being a part of.  Handmade Winter is a Creative Mamas Collaboration, a beautiful collection of recipes, projects, and seasonal inspiration from some of your favorite #creativemamas.  

Handmade Winter eMag at

Winter is for gathering together, making gifts and memories, and sharing with one another.  Handmade Winter will help you get in the spirit of giving and give you ideas to make your season cozy and warm.  There are recipes for seasonal cocktails, delicious meals and tempting desserts (Chocolate Plum Pudding Ice Cream Cookie Sandwiches, anyone?), and handmade gifts to make and share. Beautiful gifts like a Felted Sweater iPad and Tablet Cover, Leather and Chain Jewelry, and Walnut Fairy Gifts.  There’s poetry and my own contribution to the magazine… inspiration for Encouraging Other-Centeredness during this magical season.

Handmade Winter eMagazine at

Handmade Winter is 92 pages of beautifully written and photographed inspiration for the winter.  It’s only $15 and it’s available right now!  Just click on any of the links in this post or on that beautiful button below.  I hope you enjoy this magazine as much as we have enjoyed putting it together for you.  

Buy a copy for yourself and gift a copy to all of the creative mamas on your gift list!

If you’d like to enter to win a copy of Handmade Winter for yourself just share this post somewhere on the web (Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest) and let me know in the comments!  I’ll pick a winner on December 6th.

Buy Now

Craftsy. Learn It. Make It.

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Craftsy is one of the greatest resources that us creatives have at our disposal.  I know you’ve seen their logo around the internet, but have you tried one of their classes?  If you haven’t I urge you to!  With several free classes to choose from, what have you got to lose?

What is Craftsy?
Craftsy is a worldwide craft community offering online classes. It also has a patterns marketplace where independent designers can sell their patterns; a supplies shop with great deals on yarn, fabric, and class kits; and a projects section where members share pictures of their latest craft successes. With over two million members and counting, Craftsy has something for just about everyone, in categories ranging from quilting, sewing, knitting, painting, photography, cooking, and more. 

Craftsy Logo  

Behind the Scenes: The Making of a CraftsyClass
Before filming even begins, hours and hours are spent determining what content will be covered in each class, and how to best teach specific techniques to the camera. Instructors work with an instructional designer to create an in-depth outline of each lesson, and decide how to best prepare props or “step-outs” that show what your project should like at different steps. Instead of a scripted class, instructors follow their outlines on camera to create an authentic and engaging teaching experience. 

Most Craftsy classes are filmed in one of five Craftsy studios in Denver, CO, assuring that every part of the production process goes off without a hitch. They fly in instructors from all over the world to spend several days filming, then spend several weeks turning hours of footage into a two to three hour class experience that has been watched, rewatched, and reviewed by industry experts. The final result is an HD-quality video that takes you in-depth into specific topics in any given craft category- from cooking and fine art to sewing and knitting. 


What IS the Craftsy experience? 
Craftsy classes are designed to have all the benefits of an in-person class, with none of the drawbacks. Available online and on-demand, you always have world-class instructors at the tip of your fingers. You can retake the class as many times as you want, and the 30-second repeat feature allows you to watch the same section over and over again until you get every technique just right. 

Watching a Craftsy class is like having a first-row seat with some of the best instructors in the world. Even better, classes have a 100% money-back guarantee. 

Try online learning today with a free mini-class from Craftsy! Choose from 23 Free Craftsy Classes ranging from drawing and painting to sewing and quilting, from knitting to cake decorating and more.