Happy Friday! I hope you’ve had a lovely, quiet, restful mid-January week. As discussed a couple of weeks ago, I’ve been practicing taking breaks throughout my days and I really think I’m starting to get the hang of it. I think the time of year and pretty January views like in the above photo are really helping. 🙂
It’s that time of year again where I try to get myself to get outside more and I fail miserably at it. I should also note that when I actually do get out and take a quick walk around the creek path, it’s almost always a highlight of my day. It’s amazing how quiet and beautiful the world is right now and it’s so inspiring to notice how lovely the little dried grasses and seed pods are that are left along the creek banks at this time of year. If the edges of the creek happen to freeze, cracking that ice with a stick or the toe of your boot is just endless fun for the whole family. Still, I find it extra easy to find an excuse to keep working on something inside rather than head out for a few minutes. Working on it again this year and hoping to get better as the days start to get longer. There’s still a whole lot of winter left here for us!
I just want to bake something! I am definitely suffering from Christmas baking withdrawal. It was just so fun to have an excuse to bake so often and I just haven’t been allowing myself the time to bake cookies or loaves or pies like I was doing nearly every day last month. I miss it and I have a list about a mile long of recipes that I’d like to try out or things that I’d like to stock the freezer with. I’ve been obsessing over nordicware lately and trying to decide which pan to get next to add to my collection. This beautiful loaf pan is at the top of my list and this stunning bundt pan looks like a great one for making an everyday, basic cake recipe seem extra fancy with just a little glaze drizzled over the finished product. I did manage to make my Sunday morning cinnamon rolls on the weekend with Jack, though, which I highly recommend as a very satisfying baking project if you’re missing all the Christmas cookies and cakes too. The baking dish I used here is my Emile Henry ruffled baking dish, which is always perfect for this recipe.
I had such a hard time finding baskets for the mudroom. Like, comically bad. Ridiculous, really. I had originally ordered some Pottery Barn baskets that are the same ones I have in the living room, along with a tray that I thought would work well in the mudroom too.. The baskets are a dark seagrass and I’ve had them for years now and I thought they would continue to stand the test of time. As soon as I placed the order, I got an email saying the estimated delivery date had changed from ten days away until about 7 months away. I was not waiting 7 months for some baskets, so I cancelled that. Then I decided that water hyancinth would be the way to go, since I’ve used water hyacinth baskets in quite a few other places around the house with success. I tested them out in the room, they looked good with all the finishes, and I ordered a set of water hyacinth cubes from Amazon. They came in and they were beautiful. So sturdy. So high quality. But just a smidge too big for the openings of cubbies. It was painful to send them back. If you order those, they’re really more like 12″ for each measurement than the 11.5 inches listed on the product page. Finally, on the third try I found some that work! These are from wayfair and are just slightly smaller and perfect for my storage cubbies. I was really looking to having a more “permanent” solution in there rather than the ratty fabric bins that reminded me that they needed to be replaced every time I pulled them out, and now all is right in the world.
My dream is to be a blogger when I grow up. I realize that I’ve been blogging for almost 12 years now and it’s technically my full-time day job, but I really feel like I’ve never quite fulfilled my vision for being the type of daily blogger that I’ve always wanted to be. It’s definitely a little bit of a pie-in-the-sky dream to think that I could make the kind of content I create on a daily basis, with all the completing of projects, photographing of end results, and writing of blog posts, but I just love the idea of a blog that you can check in with on a daily basis, whether it’s at breakfast time, or as a little mental break at mid-day. I might only manage to post on here once a week sometimes when things get really busy, but just know that I wish I was checking in here with you for a chat every day. 🙂
We’re on our way to IDS this morning! IDS is the Canadian interior design trade show in Toronto and I’ve just always wanted to go check it out. Since we’ve been in “the trade” now doing interior photography for a few years, I thought that would be a good excuse to go spend the afternoon wandering around the show and taking it all in, and of course having a nice dinner in Toronto too before we head back home. I’ll report back if we end up seeing anything interesting there!
NEWS AND FINDS
-Are in you in January cleaning mode? Here’s a little inspiration from some past reader-favorite cleaning posts:
- What to Clean in January
- How to Clean Silpat Baking Mats
- How to Clean Wicker Baskets
- Refilling a Plug-In Air Freshener
- The Scrub-Free Microwave Cleaning Method
-Did I tell you about my beautiful fly swatter find yet? We had a problem with flies suddenly coming into our house when the big storm hit just before Christmas this year and they were extraordinarily annoying. I’ve always refused to own a fly swatter because they’re all so ugly and plastic and gross, but our situation inspired me to find out if there was such a thing as a beautiful fly swatter. It turns out that there is! I ordered this lovely perforated cognac leather fly swatter and it’s beautiful enough to leave out or hang on a hook somewhere easily accessible the next time you need it.
-I’ve had this blue and white ginger jar in my Amazon cart section where I save all my favorite finds for years. My blue and white ceramic collection is definitely complete for now, but there’s something about it that I just love. A pair of these would be perfect on a mantel in a living room or on an entryway table. Anyway, I recently noticed that the price had dropped by quite a bit compared to what it was when I first found it and it’s such a great deal now.
-I love the idea of this julienne peeler for a quick way to make delicate little shreds of vegetables for a salad or garnish. Will definitely be adding to cart on my next order as I’ve already thought of how handy it would be several times in the past week when I’ve been in the kitchen.
-Best sellers of the past week: Indestructible LL Bean Waterhog doormats (always a best seller, really). This classic black cashmere sweater that I’ve been living in that might actually be the only sweater I need. This stylish, affordable brass flush mount light. Our front door handle set, visible in the photo of our front porch below from last spring.
MORE RECENT POSTS
- How to Remove Pills From Upholstery
- 12 Homekeeping Tools That Actually Changed My Life
- Five Things on a Friday 1/6/23
- Soft and Chewy Plant-Based Chocolate Chip Cookies
- Camera Gear We Use For Shooting Interiors
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Courtenay Hartford is the author of creeklinehouse.com, a blog based on her adventures renovating a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural Ontario, Canada. On her blog, Courtenay shares interior design tips based on her own farmhouse and her work as founder and stylist of the interior photography firm Art & Spaces. She also writes about her farmhouse garden, plant-based recipes, family travel, and homekeeping best practices. Courtenay is the author of the book The Cleaning Ninja and has been featured in numerous magazines including Country Sampler Farmhouse Style, Better Homes and Gardens, Parents Magazine, Real Simple, and Our Homes.