It’s Friday! Time for us to get caught up. 🙂
We added more pot lights to the kitchen and it’s like a whole different room in there. For some reason, when they renovated our kitchen about 30 years ago, they only did potlights along the one side where the main bank of cabinetry is. I guess because they were thinking that the other side of the room was more of a “dining room” area where the table goes with the light fixture directly over it. The room is pretty large though, so we ended up with these dark corners around the table that kind of didn’t really feel like entirely usable space. Chris has always said that he would eventually finish putting in pot lights around the rest of the room, but it wasn’t a huge priority. He was doing the lighting in the back stairwell recently though, and installed quite a few pot lights back there to make it a really bright, welcoming space. He decided that since he was on a roll (and used to crawling around in the attic at that point), he’d just pick up an extra pack of lights and finish the kitchen too. Wow, upgrading to modern lighting always makes such a difference in older homes.
I’m still picking away at the painting jobs around the house. Obviously, this upgrade is a little less exciting than completely revamping our lighting systems, but it still makes me so happy every time. I repainted the French door that leads from the kitchen to the mudroom and it just feels right now. It was a really nice green before, which I liked, but the new black door (in Benjamin Moore “Onyx”) just feels so right in the space, especially with the other black elements like the lantern light fixture and the black Windsor chairs around the table. I’ve also been working at refreshing all of our trim in the kitchen with a slightly warmer white with a little more depth to it, Benjamin Moore White Dove, which is also what’s on the walls. The White Dove/Onyx combination is just so nice. Warm and welcoming, but but still very calm and simple. Definitely recommend this mix if you’re looking for a good black and white paint pair.
Sports and activities have been back for a few weeks here and it’s just been the best thing. Real life is just so great. It’s kind of amazing to me now how much I used to dread our busy weekends filled with traveling around for soccer tournaments, but I guess it’s all about balance. 🙂 Jack’s soccer and his ninja class have started back up, so he’s busy a few days a week with that, and so are Chris and Kennedy because they help with the coaching for soccer. Kennedy’s got her driving lessons and a full course load at school, which she’s not super thrilled about, but it’s probably good for her, anyway. Ha! Anyway, I’m feeling good about these things and I’m really looking forward to spring and summer this year. 🙂
I know it’s still absolutely the dead of winter, but camping has been on my mind a lot lately. We booked a group of campsites with all of our neighbours for this summer, which is quite a feat because booking even just one site at the campground we like to go to is highly competitive. Chris got up and signed into the booking system at the crack of dawn (or actually before) for several days in a row and managed to get us all sites next to each other. The kids are all going to have so much fun. It’s got me feeling distracted by all the fun camping-related gear I get to search for, honestly. You know I love to talk camping gear. 🙂 We still need a couple more of these tiny, lightweight chairs that we love so much and I really like this new “saddle” color that they have this year.I discovered that my favourite summer sweatshirt has been discontinued when I went to go order another one in a different color for this summer, but I’m intrigued by this one because, of course, it’s blue and white and it’s supposedly super soft. Perfect for around the campfire at night. We’ve had this beach chair for ten years and it’s so comfortable. Same with this waterproof beach blanket. We use ours for soccer too. Also, Chris would roll his eyes so hard at me, but I’ve always wanted to try this little camping organizer too. Oh, the tidiness! Can you imagine how great that would be?
My bedroom light fixture came in! Oh my goodness. It’s so lovely. I’m so glad I went with one that’s a little more special rather than something extra simple like I was originally planning to do. I’ve seen this shape of flushmount before in higher-end design photos and they’ve always caught my eye as being fun, but still classy. I’m so happy with the finish of the brass parts of the light. It’s a really true natural brass color and not super shiny. And I love the fact that the shade is fabric and not plastic! So excited to get it installed! I share a few of the other brass flush mounts that caught my eye while I was looking here. I actually love them all displayed together like that and think I may refer back to that little list the next time I need another flush mount somewhere. I love them all!
NEWS AND FINDS
-I created a little “Insta Shop” which you can see in the menu at the top of the page. To tell you the truth, this is something I’ve been meaning to figure out how to do since about 2016 and for some reason, every time I looked at it, I just didn’t understand how it all came together and how you were supposed to add your instagram photos to it and make it so people can actually find what they see in the photo. Well, I sat myself down a couple of weeks ago and once I committed myself to it, I understood how it all works in about 10 minutes. Isn’t that always the way? So now I have that fun little feature available. It was a little personal triumph, for sure. 🙂
-My all-weather Adirondack chairs are on sale right now! Of course, they’re sold out in white currently, which happens super frequently, but I’m also really loving the “sand” color that they come in as well, which actually are in stock! Now is a great time to start thinking about what you need for spring. I need a new pair of large porch planters for the top of the stairs, so I’m on the hunt for something that I’ll really love.
-Is this not the most beautiful feather duster you’ve ever seen? You know I love a good feather duster and I may have gasped when I saw this one. 🙂
-I know we’ve talked about this a million times before, but can we just circle back on how sad it is that Target is no longer in Canada? I would buy this bench in a second for the end of our bed. And these chairs? They look like they’re worth 10x the price. And this tiny brass table? Stop it! OK, closing the page now and walking away.
-One of the things that homeowners always comment to me when we’re in homes shooting kitchens is that they’re having the hardest time finding a decent crock to hold their utensils next to the stove. It’s true, most of them that you see in stores seem to be ugly and rather un-simple for some reason. I added one to my Amazon shop recently after ordering it for myself because it’s just absolutely perfect. It’s made of heavy natural marble, so no matter what you put in it, it will be sturdy and stay standing upright on your counter. It has a simple shape and no other frills or gimmicks and I think that’s what we’re all looking for in a utensil crock isn’t it? It seems to be a universal issue of concern. 🙂 I think it would make a beautiful vase too, actually. It’s probably a bit too heavy to really be practical for packing up and carrying around with me for styling the kitchens we shoot, but I do anyway because it’s just so nice. Totally worth the workout.
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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.