Tis the season to be crafty (fa-la-la-la-la, la-la-la-la).

Even though I’m not one to start blasting Christmas music the day after Halloween or to start grabbing wrapping paper off the shelves before Thanksgiving, I will definitely be tasting and trying some new holiday traditions this year. From “wow, does this really exist?”, to “seriously, you can actually make that?”, I’ve discovered new tricks up my sleeves to having a more wonderful holiday season.

Alright, so you know the typical draft beers: MillerCoors, Budweiser, Pabst, etc. What comes with draft beers? Standard taste; average, same-old-same-old, one in the same. Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy some draft beers. But when you’re looking for a new, unique, bold taste, you have to go with a craft beer. Let’s define a craft beer, shall we?

According to brewersassociation.org, a craft brewery is defined as being “small, independent and traditional”.

Retrived from http://bit.ly/1xTYnDn.

Retrived from http://bit.ly/1xTYnDn.

Craft breweries produce less than six million barrels per year, and less than 25% of the company is owned by a member that is  not  a craft brewer. Also, a majority of the ingredients in craft beer come from traditional brewing practices.

A perfect example of a company that produces these “traditional ingredients”  is Briess Malt & Ingredients Co. Born and raised  in  Chilton, WI, Briess creates  an array of malts with a touch of Wisconsin flair to enhance craft beers across  the nation,  including  Milwaukee Brewing Co!

Retrieved from http://bit.ly/1xTYMpu.

Retrieved from http://bit.ly/1xTYMpu.

A few examples of other popular craft beers are Sam Adams, Dogfish Head,  Capital,  Lagunitas, and Goose Island. Below are the craft beers I’m most  excited to try this  winter:

Alright, so you know the typical holiday activities: hanging ornaments on the tree, mailing a million holiday cards, wrapping an  endless amount of gifts, etc. What comes with holiday activities? Expenses; Christmas lights, printing family pictures, wrapping  paper, ribbons, presents, food (the list goes on forever). The holidays are not supposed to be stressful, they’re meant to be fun!  Here are three DIY crafts that will guarantee some savings, especially for us “right-out-of-college” youngings:

Copyright of Jennifer Rogers.

Every year, I always strive to make my presents as personal as they can be. Last year, I wanted to show my creative side and do what I do best. After wrapping each present in plain, light brown wrapping paper, I drew the name of the recipient. I wanted to create elegance to each of my presents and thought this would be a great way to do so. After finding the perfect font online for inspiration, these effortless “name tags” came to life.

Since the wrapping paper was brown and the names were black. I decided to add a dash of color (I mean, it is Christmas after all). I found my endless stack of Food Network magazines and remembered seeing a DIY tutorial on how to make your own Christmas bows. With all of the various textures, colors, and recipes that Food Network magazine brings, I knew these bows would be scrumptious.

Copyright of Jennifer Rogers.

Copyright of Jennifer Rogers.

I am going to leave you with new ideas, new traditions, new holiday beverages, and hope you have the most “crafty” holiday season.


“Even though she was a grown woman, she believed in elves and Santa Claus and flying reindeer and sacks with an endless capacity for toys.  Furthermore, she believed that believing in these things was the chief reason that she had more fun in life than others.”



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