September 16, 2016

Friday Randomness

This post, like my brain, is all over the place today. This has not been a very productive week for me. My Sweet Guy was out of town all week and I had such plans to take advantage of the extra time but I just didn't feel well for much of the week so a lot of things didn't get accomplished. I don't talk about it much but I have some sort of, as yet undiagnosable, inflammatory issue. It's not the end of the world but it certainly gets in my way sometimes. It's the reason I was put on a gluten free diet three weeks ago. First let me say, it's not helping. Which is maybe a bit of a relief? Secondly let me say, when you go gluten free it suddenly seems that the entire world, like life itself, centers around the very thing you are now no longer allowed to have. I committed to giving it 4 weeks so, 4 weeks I shall give it, but you can bet I'll be eating gluten for dinner next Friday! Enough about that!

I did spend some quality time, on my sacred day, finishing a project that I started months ago! It's always a treat when I actually finish something. These quirky little birds, from a kit put out by Alicia Paulson soooo many years ago, so many, in fact, that I didn't even live in the Village when I bought them, are now happily keeping me company in the studio while I create.

I've spent a fair amount of time organizing this week. I guess it's all part of the change of seasons, although really I'm always a bit obsessed with being organized. This week I ordered my 2017 planner from here as well a Filofax in an effort to streamline my paper and thoughts. I also spent some time gathering the tools that will make my system pretty, because if you are going to use something every day, it might as well be pretty! This will be my third Day Designer and I can honestly say that it's been a game changer for me. I would have a panic attack at the very idea of trying to live without it.

Today has been spent cleaning and fluffing the nest for Autumn. It is such a struggle for me to add in the seasonal changes without feeling like it's too much. I just breathe easier when I see less stuff. Awfully hard to do in the kitchen and dining room where I have no usable cabinets or in the studio where I hoard all the stuff, but in the rest of the house I'm paring down as I go and trying to keep things simple while also, trying to resist the urge to box up all the leftovers and drop them at Goodwill.

It's a start and I will try to take my time figuring out what's right for this house and my apparent bent toward cozy, colorful minimalism. I will probably be shuffling things around for the next week or two. Or realistically until Thanksgiving. I do know that it's worth the effort and the internal war because when I look at this spot, I take a deep breath and sigh. I am filled with peace.

Then I walk in here and see the reality of the chaos I've created and I want to box it all up and hide in a corner with a book. It's important to remind myself that I love this homemaking thing, this creating a cozy, happy nest for my people. I only have 7 hours until my guy gets home from his trip so I should probably get back to it. I don't think that is the welcome home he has in mind. Hope you all have a great weekend. Eat some gluten for me...just don't tell me about it!



  1. I love your home! And I struggle with wanting less to be out myself. But in a one bedroom apartment, there's just not much room. I featured you on my Six On Saturday post last weekend about your "sacred day."

  2. I agree that less is more in this busy world we live in. Your nesting always motivates me to simplify and decorate with what I already have.
    I hope you get to the bottom of your diagnosis. My daughter suffers from an autoimmune syndrome and it can be tricky to get proper care.
    Happy Fall.

  3. Sorry to hear about your inflammation. I have RA, so I know all about the inflammation. I have quite a few categories that I have to avoid to feel well. Gluten is one of them and if it turns out you do have a gluten intolerance, you just have to find the right things ---trust me.
    I have trouble with sugar and dairy and I actually think they cause me more trouble than the gluten.
    Hope you figure out the issue.

    Love your blog and home. Cuteness for sure. I loved your post about your sacred day. I am TRYING so hard to incorporate that into my life.

  4. I pray you get to the bottom of the inflammatory problem, Jen. I mentioned in my last post that I'll be trying a new drug for inflammatory issues that may be causing my severe eczema. Although the cyclosporine I've been taking for months has helped tremendously, it can't be used for longer than 9 months at a time. Hang in there. My daughter has a friend who has celiac disease and she was seriously ill for over a year before it was diagnosed. She is full on with her gluten restrictions as she is terribly sick when she veers off it. Still, I can't blame you for loathing every minute, especially not knowing for sure if this is the answer to your problems.

    I was reading a design book today about eliminating the clutter to let other pieces shine. I kept thinking of all my favorite little things and that having them around makes me feel very cozy and 'at home'. Well, I guess that's not wise. Ugh. Yet in a few days I'll pack up the summery pieces I have and then bring up the fall stuff to replace it, maybe making even more clutter. I've never been one to follow rules anyway. ;-D


  5. I see the images of your home, and wish. I admire your ability to create a place that is yours, an expression of you. I know you have help with that in your wonderful man. Wish me luck in finding one like him for myself!

  6. Your touches of fall are perfect! I was just telling Hadleigh that I needed to find a good cookbook that focused on pies--do you like the one on your stand?

  7. Hi Jen - Love, love, love seeing all your fluffing! Just wanted to say good luck in finding out about the inflammation thing. Have you talked to your doc about fibromyalgia? Not sure what your symptoms are, but I was finally diagnosed with that (and not every doc I spoke to even believes it exists, so they kept thinking I was being dramatic or had several different issues). I also have RA, so that may be it, too. Just wanted to mention the fibro because it's often not considered.

  8. I decided to eliminate clutter and started putting the items I could part with on the top shelf in my walk in closet. Suddenly I thought about calling a few shops to see if they buy stuff and to my surprise, they do! They resell after they paint or use as props. I have been wanting to visit these cute shops so I am getting to cross that off my list, too!
    The vintage stuff goes to one shop and the wooden pieces are going to the coastal decor shop.
    I hope you will find out what is bothering you and will not be feeling blah much longer!

  9. I'm so sorry you have undiagnosed inflammatory issues. I think the most frustrating part is not having a firm diagnosis. I know several people who have tried different types of elimination diets to see what foods are contributing to their inflammation. Sugar can be a huge culprit; so can nightshades. My mom had horrible pain in her joints and back and her natural health practitioner had her try giving up nightshades (tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, eggplant, all kinds of spices) and her pain was totally gone in just one week!

    On a more positive note, your vignettes are just gorgeous. I love the bookcase with the aprons, cookbooks and basket. Is that in your kitchen? I also love your little felt pumpkin. :-)

  10. oh gee wiz .. i dare say we're on the same footing with regard to seasonal decor and it sometimes being just too too too much even a little bit. up in the rafters i have 2 large bins filled to the gills with autumnal decor. i need to ask the hubs to bring it down and even then...? i may not use it. instead i may just put a price and sell it as a lot and be done with the whole deal. however ... i do have a bit - a very little bit - of autumn decor up. very little. i painted a flat wood pumpkin and added a white-ish sunflower and some bits of old ribbon and lace. it's hung up on the porch wall. inside, i have a new to me burlap pumpkin and candles in a muddy pumpkin tone. and that? that may be it. 'cept for darling squirrel salt and pepper shakers from the rafters. the rest? can go. ....................i think.

  11. and.................i'm so sorry to learn you're experiencing
    a health challenge. it may very well *not* be a gluten issue.
    hoping you find the answer soon so you can continue living your
    lovely village life in absolute delight.

  12. I'm so so sorry to hear you haven't been feeling well. Praying for some answers and relief for you! Love you décor and I seriously need to declutter! Hope your weekend is going well.

  13. Ohhhhh, well you might not want to visit my latest recipe on my blog....sorryyyyy!! I love your sweet, cozy home and your writing style just draws me in. I hope you find the answer to your health issue...hugs to you, sweet friend. xo

  14. Everything looks so pretty and cozy. Your little birds are adorable!! I hope you feel better soon and find out what's wrong. xo

    ~ Wendy

  15. I'm so sorry to hear of your Autoimmune issues. I have lupus, fibromyalgia, Sjogren's disease, ibs and a few others. I only mention this to tell you that diet is the key to feeling better. I got sick in 1987 and up until 3 years ago I thought I had a good diet by following the current thinking put out by the FDA. I became sicker and sicker until I was in so much pain and so weak that I was heading for a nursing home before long. I found a Functional Medicine doctor and he changed my life by changing my diet. He put me on a gluten free detox diet that allowed me to see what foods my body could no longer tolerate. I found quite a few things. I went from being very sick to now having my life back. Last Christmas I decided to see if it really was the diet or just a remission of my diseases. I ate one or two Christmas cookies every day for one week. The result is that I got just as sick at I had been and it lasted for 3 weeks. You can look up the detox diet, anti inflammatory foods and gluten free recipes online. I am also will to answer any questions you might have. This diet has saved my life and I know it is hard at first but it may be just what you need. You can contact me at

  16. Jen, really sorry to hear you have not been feeling quite yourself, I hope you find a remedy soon that works for you, making you feel better! Your home photos always fill me with joy your styling is just perfect! I LoVe your mercury glass pumpkin, I'm keeping a lookout for one of them! Sending you hugs!!!
    Anna xx

  17. I understand the need for simplicity.

    I am looking at blogs and Instagram for fall ideas and finding that the photos that speak to me are those with simple beauty.

  18. Even with items stacked on your table, your house is so lovely! :) Kit

  19. Amazing! The photos are so beautiful...
    ( blog Cem Manias)

  20. Gorgeous pictures...and I agree with you, I am simplifying my rooms too...if I have too many things on display it makes me feel stressed!! I hope you feel better soon re the health problems and wish you a happy October.
    Helen xox


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