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Beautify your home and give back with Macy’s Heart of Haiti

Papier mache artist Gerard Dume
Papier mache artist Gerard Dume
In 2010, a massive earthquake hit Haiti. It destroyed thousands of homes and businesses, leaving behind a devestated country. Shortly after the earthquake, Macy’s reached out to artisans in Haiti to create the Heart of Haiti product line, which includes handcrafted goods such as bowls, trays and vases.

Macy’s now employs 550 artisans in Haiti to make the Heart of Haiti line, including the talented soul who made the black-and-white vase they shared with me. It’s made of papier mache, and it puts the chili pepper I made in high school to shame. The Heart of Haiti papier mache items are made by crafters and artisans in the seaside town of Jacmel. They start by forming a mold out of dried mud, then use recycled cement bags to make the vase. Check out this video of the artists in action.

I’d like to share with you how artfully I incorporated the vase into my home decor, but instead I’ll tell you the truth: There is no such thing as “artful” when it comes to me and home decor. I thought the vase deserved something more than what I could offer it, so I took it to our friendly local crafting emporium, where floral designer Angie helped me.


When I say Angie “helped me,” what I mean is I followed Angie around and said things like “sparkly but not crazy” and “maybe some red” and “I’d like to leave it up ’til February, so wintery but not too Christmasy” and finally “Holy cow that looks great, how did you do that?” Thanks to the Heart of Haiti artists and the very patient Angie, I now have a striking addition to my winter decor.


The Macy’s Gifts that Give Back initiative is a beautiful and simple way to give back this season. You can decorate your home and buy gifts for your own friends and family while helping these artisans care for their families. It’s a win-win! The Heart of Haiti line is available online and at select Macy’s stores (Herald Square in Downtown Brooklyn, Downtown DC’s Metro Center, Chicago’s State Street, San Francisco’s Union Park, Downtown Seattle, Dallas Gallaria, Downtown Portland OR, Atlanta’s Lenox Square, Dallas Galleria Mall and Miami Dadeland).

NaBloPoMo November 2015

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post  for Macy’s Heart of Haiti line in conjunction with Everywhere Agency.

What we read about when we read about Butterscotch Sundae (or: let’s visit Google Analytics)

NaBloPoMo November 2015The most visited posts on the site from November 12, 2014, through today are as follows:

1. How to throw a “Star Wars” birthday party and turn a bunch of kids into Jedi knights. This is also the top Butterscotch Sundae post of all time. Clearly I need to write more “Star Wars” crafting posts.

2. The complete, mostly unadulterated story of my troubles with the Mirena IUD. This one is also from 2012. Every now and then someone emails me to say “me too.” So while I wouldn’t want to experience it again, I’m glad I wrote about it.

3. The fulfillment of a dream I didn’t even know I had. Oh, you know, just that time in April when I shook hands with the President of the United States.

4. Tactile tactics and other activities for the reluctant speller. We’re still using a number of these spelling activities, and I’m still adding to the list whenever I see a promising technique.

5. What second grade and fifth grade look like at our house. This was my homeschool curriculum post for this year. It’s always interesting to go back to those and see what we ended up dropping. This time, we ended up dropping the outsourced science and art classes, but everything else has stuck.

6. From here to there, from there to here. Rockford’s job takes him to exotic locales every now and then. On this particular trip, we did a photo project to compare our days.

7. Here, there and everywhere, a continuation of the previous post.

8. How far will $64 go at Harris Teeter?, in which I spent $64 for a week’s worth of groceries.

9. Four fun places in Atlanta to visit with your kids. That was a great trip. I’d love to visit the Georgia Aquarium again one day.

10. Maybe FDR was right about that unreasoning, unjustified terror. I’m still wary of sinkholes, but the airplane fear has abated a little.

Not surprisingly, the top search queries since last November are mostly about stormtrooper balloons and “Star Wars” birthday parties. Other inquiries of note include “broccoli vs. ice cream sundae,” “how much does p90x cost?” and “fabulous dinosaur.” I’m not sure what this means, other than that I do not have a clearly defined niche. But I think we already knew that.

Minutiae: A pictorial journey through a Tuesday in November

Today I had the timer on my phone set to go off at regular intervals to remind me to take a picture, because it’s #OneDayHH day on Instagram. OneDay is the brainchild of former blogger Laura Tremaine, and it calls for participants to chronicle small, everyday moments throughout one full day. I did it last year. Poppy said she really enjoyed the post, and I love taking pictures. So I did it again this year, too.

Here’s what our day looked like:

9am – Keep Your Germs to Yourself

10am – Homeschooling in Progress

11am – A New Distraction

12pm – Long Overdue

1pm – Not Nutritionally Sound

2pm – The Car Was Not in Motion

3pm – Kickin’ It

3:30pm – A Lovely Surprise

4pm – Cat Pants are the Best Pants

5:30pm – Go Away, Cold

6:30pm – Not Lemon Chicken

7:30pm – Games and a Cat

9:45pm – I Used Way Too Much Honey

NaBloPoMo November 2015