Get the Glow
Brighten a room with this simple, festive idea. Dip a handful of glass votive holders in glue, roll them in gold glitter, and then insert candles. Their dancing flames will add a sparkling accent to any corner.
Capture the Magic
Resorts across the South pull out all the stops to celebrate the holidays, making them great weekend getaways for a couple or a family. They dress the setting with grand decorations, and many offer special packages for seasonal visitors. One of our favorites is The Homestead, tucked in Virginia’s Allegheny Mountains. (Check it out at TheHomestead.com.) There, if conditions are right, you won’t have to dream of a white Christmas; you'll enjoy one.
Show your Cards
Everyone loves to receive letters and notes this time of year―the more, the better, we say. Resist the urge, though, to pile them on a table or line them along the mantel. Instead, make them part of a seasonal arrangement. Spray-paint pinecones a bright gold, let them dry, and then lay them on their sides in a large bowl or tray. Prop up the cards and pictures within the individual scales of the cones. The result is a pretty display rich with memories.
Warm Up the Grown-ups
Whether you're hosting an after-caroling party or just entertaining neighbors and friends at a casual gathering, this dessert-like drink will wow your guests. We predict it will become your newest holiday tradition.
Process ¼ cup cold brewed coffee, 2 pts. coffee ice cream, ½ cup brandy, and ½ cup chocolate syrup in a blender until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides. Pour mixture into glasses, and garnish with sweetened whipped cream, chocolate curls, and milk chocolate sticks, if desired. Serve immediately.
Makes 5 cups. Prep: 5 min.
• For testing purposes only, we used Häagen-Dazs Coffee ice cream and Hershey's Milk Chocolate Sticks.
Share the Scent
Here's a nifty idea for a quick and thoughtful present. Clip some sprigs of rosemary, and gather them together in a vase with water. Tie a ribbon around the vase, and you have a living, fragrant token of remembrance.
"December Inspirations" is from the December 2007 issue of Southern Living.