It’s About Party Time! Introducing Nora Fleming

Nora Fleming and Carol Zeien, Two New Women in my Life!

There’s so much to unpack in this week’s post! All kinds of great new things are happening at CoziNest. First, and most importantly. let me introduce you to two new women in my life. Carol Zeien and Nora Fleming!  Carol, is a beautiful – inside and out, lady who is my new business partner at the shop at Southern Antiques & Accents.

She brings with her a wealth of knowledge about retail, a mutual love of our Lord and a dear, sweet friendship. She moved to the Fairhope area about a year ago and we met through a group of artist on the Eastern Shore. It is rare in life that you meet someone and feel you’ve known them your whole life, but this is the case with Carol.

Carol Zeien

For 12 years in the state of Iowa, Carol owned and operated her own tea room and gift shop, named Imagine This. The thing she still loves about her business is being able to use her creativity to help others make their own creative vision come to life while contributing financially to her family. She continues to paint as a freelance artist under the name Imagine This.

She is married to Don, Retired Chief Warrant Officer 3, US Navy who served 22 years in active duty. Their two daughters are Chandler and Camden. Chandler is married to Dustin Brannam, Captain, US Marine, and they are stationed in San Diego, CA. Chandler is a physical therapist at Rady Children’s Hospital. Their youngest daughter, Camden, is a student at Pensacola State where she is preparing for a career as an aesthetician.

carol and don zeien

Carol’s expertise in choosing inventory has already made a big hit in our shop. We now offer Mad Dash Food Mixes which sell out every time we sample them. They are selling like hot cakes for gift baskets as well as quick and easy dinners for our patrons.

We also offer teas from AppWyld Teas in North Carolina, scones, jams and lemon curd! AppWyld also makes their own bath salts and bath bombs which are brand new in the shop! Come in soon to make up a gift basket for those on your Christmas list, or to mark dinner off your grocery list.

Key Lime Pie Package


Carol is an incredibly talented artist

She paints commissioned pieces as well as some beautiful wall art that is for sale in our shop. She sent me a picture of this sheep a few days after we met and it SOLD immediately. Can you believe the eyes?


Carol Zeien Sheep

After hanging “Be Still” in MY den, we’ve been busy filling the shop with new and exciting inventory. One of my favorites is Nora Fleming.

An Ah-Hah Moment with Nora Fleming

A few months ago a customer of mine called with a suggestion. She asked me to consider carrying Nora Fleming in my shop. I had never heard of of Nora Fleming, so I asked her to tell me about it. Robin, thank you so very much!!! As she talked about the collection, I could hear her passion about the line and so I filed it away for future consideration.

When Carol and I discussed inventory weeks later, I asked if she had heard of it and yes! She had actually carried the line in her store in Iowa and was totally on board with adding it to our inventory.

I fell in love with the line as soon as I started researching. I have always loved entertaining and the simplicity of these platters, trays and bowls with interchangeable minis is such a no brainer!

If you love playing hostess but don’t have the space to store serving pieces for every holiday, Nora Fleming is your new best friend. The minis are small and don’t take up much space, but offer you so many options for every holiday and event of the year. One gift. Every occasion. Here’s how it works:

1. Select your base and mini

Nora Fleming Bread Tray


This is our bread tray with the collegiate helmet for the University of Alabama. We currently have Auburn, AL and and LSU in stock. We can order other schools if Nora Fleming has the license for your particular team.



LSU is represented here with the Octagonal Platter.

2. Dab hole in base with water and slip mini into the hole

nora fleming maple tidbit

3. Pull the mini stem from underneath to secure

These platters, trays and crocks make a great start to a gift basket. Brides love them. They make a great family gift for those family Christmas games like Dirty Santa or for the name you draw at the office. Start with a tray and mini, then add one of our Mad Dash Mixes, tea, scone mix or lemon curd for a unique gift for under $100.

Your gift will be loved and you’ll have ideas built in for the next birthday or holiday. The minis are both affordable and loveable and make collectors very happy!


Nora Fleming Minis

There’s a delightful mini for 12 months of the year! They are collectible and do retire, so be sure to get the ones you love as soon as you see them. They may not be here the next time you come in. Locations who have permission to carry Nora Fleming are limited to 25 miles between stores. We are lucky to have this line in Fairhope! Drop by the store to see the new line and hear about an upcoming promotion.

Our current inventory of minis include options for Valentine’s, Easter, Spring, St. Patty’s, birthdays, Summer, patriotic holidays, Fall, Football season, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, We may not get another order in before Christmas, so If you are a collector, hurry in!

If you are already familiar with Nora Fleming, please comment below and tell us about your favorite mini or event. We would love to hear! Also, please share this email with your friends! We want to spread the word about this beautiful new line in Shop #115 at Southern Antiques & Accents in Fairhope, AL.

The Best Gifts are Homemade; Here are 5 Baskets You’ll Love

Homemade Gifts are the Best Gifts

Or at least that’s what they say. Years ago, I was part of a group who got together starting in August every year to begin making our homemade Christmas presents. We made photo albums, wreaths, decorated candles, and smocked baby dresses to name a few of our projects. (I know I am dating myself!)

Judging by the response of those who received the gifts, I think it is true that homemade gifts are the best. And what a joy it was to give them! Question. Do the gifts have to be made completely from scratch? I would say no. There’s nothing new under the sun. Adding our own special touch to something purchased or designing a coffee mug for that special co-worker are just a few of the ways we can offer something homemade as a gift. CoziNest is here to help with that.

Gift Baskets Designed by You, Assembled by Us

Carol and I have searched the landscape, both vintage and new, and are now gathering the most unique gifts you can buy! We offer our local clients personal delivery and for those not so local, we are happy to ship. Here are five gift examples you can send to a friend or family member.

gift basket


Mix It Up Gift Basket

The above gift includes a mixing bowl, no-bake plain ol’ cheesecake mix, a relaxing tea blend for brewing and a wooden spoon. It sells for only $23. We can add mugs, tea cup and saucer or most any other suggestion. We have a complete line of easy food mixes. These make a perfect gift, a great addition to your weekly menu or an easy take along to a party. Here are a few of our new mixes:

  • No Bake Plain ol’ Cheesecake
  • No Bake Key Lime Cheesecake
  • No Bake Chocolate Cheesecake
  • Fruit Cobbler
  • No Bake Pumpkin Spice Cheesecake
  • Mini Pecan Pie Muffin Mix
  • Dill-illicious Spinach Dip
  • Zesty Crab Dip
  • Warm Artichoke-Spinach Dip
  • Guacamole Dip Spices
  • Louisiana Gumbo
  • Red Beans & Rice
  • Cajun Jambalaya
  • Cheesy Chicken Enchilada Soup
  • Chili Seasoning
  • Cranberry Pasta Salad
  • Mediterranean Pasta Salad


An angel for a gift

I believe in angels

Start your gift basket with a piece of original art by Carol Zeien. Send this to someone extra special. This beautiful angel is painted on what we like to call “Sallywood”. Wood scrapped and left behind by Hurricane Sally. Good things can come out of destruction! Just like those incredible first responders who work tirelessly on our behalf; what better way to say thank you?

your cup of tea

Could this little set be your cup of tea?

Good morning to you! What a sweet way to have your breakfast tea! This Grosvenor 3-pc Tea Set includes our popular Relax tea leaves, perfect for a friend who loves pretty and dainty things. A little vintage mixed with a soothing tea blend you’re sure to love. This little bargain is only $28. All of our teas are blended here in the south, straight from the Appalachian Mountains.

homemade pumpkin painting

Pumpkins Anyone?

Start a bride’s gift with pretty Fall pillows and an afghan. Add a painting by Carol and a pair of tea mugs for that first cozy evening after the honeymoon. We can put it all together for you and deliver it locally! Shipping is available.

mug of tea

Need a little solace?

Sip our Solace Tea and feel your body relax. It might not completely take all your troubles away, but this homemade blend will help you breathe. The Coventry Mug and .50 oz blend of Solace Tea Leaves sells for only $12.

So, what do you think? Are homemade gifts the best gifts?

Be sure to enter our contest!

Head over to Instagram and upload a picture of someone opening a gift. Caption it with your idea for a unique gift basket with hashtag #ohmygiftbasket. Basket valued at $100. Winner announced on September 23. Rules are listed here.

Hey! What She Said! And 1 Fun Instagram Contest

How many times have you been in a situation where you think of the perfect response to something someone said to you? Only it’s a week later! Me? Almost every time I’m in a group setting! It’s like “The Comeback” episode on Seinfeld, I always think of what I should have said later! Or like the title of this post, someone else has the perfect comeback and I just clumsily say, “Hey, yea! What she said!”

Well, I have the perfect solution to that problem now. Send the person a gift with the perfect comeback written on the card! Who doesn’t love a gift? They may have completely forgotten what you’re talking about, but with a well-thought out purchase, you can remind them! In a nice way, of course! And you don’t have to purchase it from the “Jerk Store”!

Hey, What she said!

CoziNest is launching a brand new gift basket business. And, as you all know, word of mouth is the very best advertising. So, I’m asking you to pass on the good news. You can start it out with, “Hey, What She Said!” And then, when you have everyone’s attention, you share the good news of the “Comeback Basket!” You just send us the story of what happened and we’ll help you put together the perfect gift! And, we’ll throw in the “comeback sauce” with a zingy little phrase.

This is just a small sampling of what we will have to offer. We will also have “Hostess with the Mostest” baskets, “Secret Santa”, “Call Your Mother” and perhaps something for the “Recovering Pessimist”. Who knows what all we will come up with. Or perhaps what you will come up with.

Contest on Instagram

she said, oh my gift basket

Hop over to Instagram to join a contest to win a gift basket of your own, valued at over $100. But, before you go, be sure to subscribe by email so we have another way to contact you if you win! You can always unsubscribe later if needed.

Here are the rules:

Contest Terms and Conditions or What She Said!

  • Contact Kim Burdette @ kim@ with any contest questions
  • Contest begins on September 12 at 12:01 am and runs through September 19 at 11.59 pm, 2021
  • You must be at least 18 years of age to enter
  • Enter the contest by sharing a new or old photo of someone opening a present with the hashtag #ohmygiftbasket Caption the photo with your idea for a unique gift basket theme. Example: the comeback basket, (read above example from Seinfeld) with any explanation you deem necessary.
  • Entries are judged by a combination of creativity, comments and likes, so be sure to spread the word about your submission.
  • On September 23, 2021 at 9 am, the winner will be contacted on Instagram, by reposting their picture using their Instagram account name.
  • The winner will have 3 days to respond in order to claim their free gift basket. If after 9 am on September 26, 2021 winner hasn’t claimed their gift, a new winner will be chosen.
  • The gift basket will include new and vintage products along with food mixes and items chosen to coordinate with the winners’ theme. The retail value is approximately $100.
  • The gift basket will be delivered within a 50 mile radius of shop in Fairhope. If outside that radius, it will be shipped and tracking number shared via email with winner.
  • This contest is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by or associated with Instagram or any other social media used throughout the contest.

Have fun! See you soon with a zingy little comeback basket! Our gift to you for helping us promote our new gift basket service.