Tuesday, October 1, 2019

When Fall Truly Arrives....in the Heart

October 1, 2019. 

Time marches steadily on and the year progresses.  Oh, how I've been longing for this page on the calendar when the days grow shorter and the sun falls to the south and creates distinctly autumnal shadows.  It's truly my favorite time of the year.....

This Summer has been so hot!  Or maybe it's just that I don't handle the heat as well, so sweltering days seem heavy and cumbersome.  There is just something very rejuvenating about crisp mornings and cool evenings.  It seems I can't resist picking up another pumpkin or two each time I stop at the market.  There are piles of them on our cottage porch and scattered throughout the flowerbed along the front of the house.  Bins full of Autumn treasures are dragged into the house and more pumpkins, glass and velvet, are nestled among seasonal prints and delicious scented candles.  From now through Thanksgiving, when the Christmas decor takes over, our home is transformed into warm-hued coziness.  

And it feels so good to slow the pace and nest for a season.  Cook hearty meals, drape soft blankets across furniture and plump pillows.  There's nothing better than curling up with a good book or sitting with a cup of coffee and simply daydreaming.  October is the best month - before the hustle and bustle of the holidays really gears up!  I just want to soak it in and live it fully.  And keep my focus on what matters most, with a heart of gratitude and a gentle spirit.  

These are the days...to grab hold and treasure life.

Until next time, take care and live well, my friends.

Jane 💗

Sunday, September 8, 2019

A Return to the Porch...

Welcome back to the porch, friends.

No, my porch doesn't look like this yet.....but, it's early in the season!!!  This was probably my favorite Fall porch photo EVER!!!
It's been a while....a long while.  I have just about let blogging go in favor of the instant gratification of sharing things on Facebook and Instagram.  I rarely take make the time to sit down and compose a post worthy of loading up the blog.  Having said that, it doesn't mean that I don't still enjoy coming here now or then for a visit.  It just takes a little more effort and energy than I usually have on a normal day.  Can you relate???

Not only is it a time issue, it's a matter of content.  I've said before that I'm not one to recreate/redecorate our home over and over just to have fresh content to share.  And Lord knows, if you peek in my closet you'll see a pretty simple and basic wardrobe, so fashion posts are not an option.  Nor do I feel the need to document every single event in our lives in great enough detail to merit a blog post. I'm one of those "quality over quantity" folks. 

Finally, there is the matter of how much blogging has changed in the last decade since I first started Janie's Porch.  So many of the blogs these days are very commercialized.  I have just about given up on reading other blogs simply because I get so frustrated with all the ads and popups that invade and clutter the feed.  But, every once in a great while, I stumble across what I consider an "old fashioned" blog, where it feels like I'm just sitting and visiting with a friend....getting a glimpse into a peer's everyday life.  So, I know the organic blog style still exists out there on the ol' worldwide web and I don't feel quite so alone.  In fact, I feel inspired to keep on with the style of blog that feels comfortable to me and, if all else fails, I know at least Eddie Dale, my Daddy and my daughter will actually read it.  😘

Life's been busy around here.  We've been working hard, traveling a bit in our fifth wheel, and lovin' on our family.  I still love our little yellow cottage (although lately I've been dreaming of making it a little gray cottage...).  It's small and cozy and only four blocks from the house I grew up in and three blocks from the house where my kiddos spent several years of their childhood.  I still dress the porch for the different seasons and we love having family over for dinners on the back patio and pumpkin carving parties every Halloween.  I still adore worn hardwood floors, crisp white trim and lots of color.  (If you're looking for lots of black, white and gray, you're smooth out of luck here, dearie!)

As we're entering my favorite time of the year - that stretch from Indian Summer right through the Christmas holidays - I hope to be back to share some sights and thoughts that require a few more photos and words here at Janie's Porch.
(Hint, hint - more posts to come!)

If you haven't stopped by before, let me just extend a heartfelt and warm welcome.  I'm glad you're here.  And I hope you will leave a note in the comments or message me directly so I know you were here!  Also, please follow me on Facebook or Instagram. (Links are also in the sidebar to the >>>.)  You can even fall down that rabbit hole known as Pinterest with me!  Come on.....it'll be FUN!!!  (Isn't that what they always say???)

Until next time...

xo xo

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Capturing a Magical Light

After several gray days of frigid temperatures, along with a bit of ice and a flurry or two of snow, the sun shone brilliantly on New Year's Day.  It was a welcome sight!  Even though it did not raise the temperature substantially, it did warm the soul......

Late afternoon sunlight streaming through our West facing windows, the stark outline of bare trees visible against a most blue sky......magical.  

It's the simple things, the ordinary, that often bring joy to the day.  A renewed and perpetual goal of mine is to take the time to see......

Monday, January 1, 2018

Post Christmas Post - No Blues Here....

Christmas has come and gone.....again.  It was a lovely and scaled back season for us in 2017.  Perhaps the diminished trappings of the holiday helped us to focus on the true meaning of Christmas and enjoy more our time spent with Family. 

There was less décor.  We decided on a smaller, tabletop tree this year, filled with our special collection of Shiny Brites and twinkly white and multicolored lights.  Without the concern of our seven month old Australian Shepherd overturning the tree and no loss of floor space or rearranging of furniture, it turned out to be a decision that most likely will be repeated in the future!  Only our favorite pieces ended up on display this time around and I supplemented with simple white prayer candles grouped here and there.  It was quite simply perfect and fitting for us in this season of our lives.  

The end of the year brought a frigid arctic cold front and several gray days of below freezing temps.  It has actually been a most welcome change to slow the pace and stay inside, snuggled up in warm fleecy blankets and sipping on hot coffee throughout the day.  With the Christmas decorations down and packed away, the house feels clean and wide open, ready for a fresh start in a new year.  It has also been the perfect opportunity to rebinge on Season 1 of The Crown, having already blown through Season 2.  Although, I have to be cautious about binging on British drama.....as I tend to start talking to myself with a thick royal accent and craving scones!  

Since tomorrow will mean a return to work and normal routine, I took the time to prepare and simmer a pot of vegetable beef soup this morning.  The leftovers should be a warm and simple solution for quick lunches throughout the coming week.  And, I am still basking in the glow of accomplishment of having done some meal prep and planning for this week, instead of falling back on a bowl of microwaved mac & cheese in a rush.  

Now, as the late Winter afternoon sun sinks low in the western sky, I will turn my attention to the evening household chores.....feeding the dogs, dinner and cleanup, and preparing for tomorrow.  There might be time for another episode (or two) of The Crown before I crawl under the covers and enjoy a bit more of the lovely novel I am currently reading before my eyelids grow heavy and I succumb to sleep and rest in preparation for a short week.  

I bid you sweet dreams, dear Friends.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

The Evening Meal

Evening falls and the lights are on in the kitchen as I prepare the final meal of the day.  With my beloved feeling a bit under the weather, a steaming pot of homemade chicken noodle soup seems in order.

 I slice the carrots and celery, season and simmer the chicken broth and stir in the egg noodles as it comes to a boil on the stovetop.  The finishing touch is the tender chunks of chicken breast.  And the aroma is heavenly!  Soon our stomachs are filled with delicious sustenance.  

After this simple meal, I return to the kitchen to clean and put things away.  The blue bowls sparkle again; the heavy saucepan drains by the sink.  My eyes scan the counter tops and find stark beauty in the curved faucet and the stacked dishes on the open shelf.  My wedding ring sits on the window sill above the sink beside my favorite essential oil.  

Even the chippy striped cup that holds the scrub brush and dishwashing wand looks graceful in its functionality.  

Some might say that washing the dishes by hand is old fashioned.  But, it is a part of the process for me.  These tasks - preparing a meal and cleaning up after - are as rewarding to me as the food that is prepared.  These tasks are the way I tend to our home, the way I show love.  They feed my soul. 

Have you looked around and found beauty in the everyday, the ordinary?  It surrounds us - art hidden in plain sight.  It makes the way easier and life more abundant. 

Stop and see.....

Monday, September 11, 2017

Vintage Trucks & Angel Art

As September unfurls before us, I've been making some little changes around the cottage.  Our "look" or "style" is still evolving and my goal has been to eliminate clutter and fluff and only have pieces in our home that I truly love. This quote from William Morris pretty much sums it up for me - 
With this in mind, I have added a couple of pieces that I truly LOVE!  

The first is this print from Round Top Collection, painted by Texas artist, Roxanne Spradlin.  Now, I love every element of this piece of art - the blue vintage truck, the pumpkins, the barn.  And it is cutely edged with galvanized tin, making it so unique.  When I came across this, I ordered it right away and I really believe it will stay out past the current season.  Something about it just speaks right to my heart and pulls me into another world of days gone by. 

You can browse other pieces by Roxanne Spradlin and other artists at the Round Top Collection Gallery.  

The second piece of art I am crushing on is this beautiful angel painting by Lisa McReynolds, part of the "American Artists Curated for Kirkland's" line. I have been admiring angel and angel wing art for some time, so when I came across this, I put everything else in my arms back on the shelf and walked out with this one single item on my last Kirkland's visit.  I find myself just sitting and gazing at this on the living room wall, feeling peace and calm envelope me. 

You can check out more of this amazing artist's work at Kirkland's.

Neither one of these pieces cost more than $30, which just goes to prove to that you can find décor you love on a budget.  Their true value is in the warmth and welcome they provide and the way they make you feel in your own space.

Thank you for letting me share this little snippet of our home with you on our visit today.  If you were here, we would sit and sip a cup of coffee and talk about all our plans for pumpkin shopping and Fall decorating!  But, since you're not, please leave a comment and let me know you stopped by.  Or visit me on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. I'll look for you there!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Feathering the Nest

Three day weekends are a good thing.....a very good thing.  

And the changing of the seasons, Summer into Autumn, is also a very good thing.  There is already a different slant to the afternoon sun.  Mornings are refreshingly cooler and the evenings arrive a little earlier with each passing day.  Over the next few weeks we will be tumbling head first into Fall....and I wait with eager anticipation.  Even the summerlike afternoon heat this weekend couldn't dampen my autumnal spirit.  I dug around in the plastic bins in the storage building out back and brought in my first layer of seasonal décor....

I am craving a simpler, more natural look in our home this year.  Much less "stuff" made the cut and the results are exactly as I had hoped.  I am still tweaking as we live with it, but I will be sharing little snippets as the season progresses.  

As with most creatures, my urge to feather our nest grows very strong at this time of year.  Simple tasks like cleaning, laundry, even preparing a meal, take on an almost spiritual reverence in my role as homemaker.  Creating an atmosphere of comfort, warmth and welcome becomes the top priority.  Soon the season of snuggling will be upon us!  So, nest on, dear friends, nest on!!!

When Fall Truly Arrives....in the Heart

October 1, 2019.  Time marches steadily on and the year progresses.  Oh, how I've been longing for this page on the calendar when t...