Happy Friday! This has been a good week. A great balance between days that felt super busy and days where I felt like I could actually catch my breath a bit. There are lots of random little things going on in my world, but also nothing really huge and notable. Some weeks/months are just like that and I’m OK with it! 🙂 Here are my five random thoughts for this Friday.
I have not been doing a good job of “supporting local” at all, really for the past year. In the pre-pandemic times I was really starting to enjoy getting out and finding great local businesses and makers to support and then as things have become more and more complicated, I’ve just kind of stopped. The funny thing is that I feel like the quality and quantity of amazing local shops, businesses, and restaurants to enjoy in our town has really flourished lately. I guess I just need to get back in the habit. Maybe I need to make a list of all the local business that I’ve been wanting to check out. Maybe I just need some warmer weather so I’ll want to leave the house more than just when it’s absolutely necessary. Ha. 🙂 Anyway, this is our collective reminder that we should all support our favorite local businesses as much as possible.
I’ve been saying no to a lot of opportunities lately and it feels good. Saying no to things that are just kind of OK, helps to make space for future things that are a definite “Yes”. It’s the kind of situation where it’s nice to be recognized, and it’s nice to have people/brands that are interested in working with me, but right now I’m feeling like I would so much rather be busy doing things I’m excited about rather than just be busy. I think it must be the time of year. I always feel my energy dragging a bit during late March/early April after a long winter and the chilly start of spring. This year, rather than being mad at myself or confused about it I’m just trying to conserve my energy wisely until things warm up in May. Saying no to things that don’t excite me frees up my time and energy to say a big 100% yes to the projects that are 100% a good fit for me.
Sunglasses for small faces are so, so hard to find, but I think I may have discovered some good ones! This is something I’ve been trying to figure out since basically the dawn of time. I’ve tried kids’ sunglasses in the past, but they were just a bit too small. Regular grown up sunglasses are often kind of OK, but always quite oversized of course. Sometimes I can go with it, but sometimes I honestly just feel a bit conspicuous and a bit “extra”. I’ve been trying to find something that would work better for everyday without making me feel like I was trying to be *fancy* like when I’m going for a hike, working in the garden, or just running some quick errands. I’ve seen quite a few people recommending Le Specs and then I found this style they have called the Bandwagon, which are apparently a favorite of Meghan Markle’s and I was sold on at least giving them a try. Just great everyday sunglasses that make you look like a normal, reasonable human being if your face is on the smaller/thinner side. I feel like they look a bit on the smaller side on regular sized heads like in the official product photos. Also they’re polarized and super affordable so you really can’t go wrong. Here’s a very tired looking me trying them on when they arrived the other day. 🙂
In the above photo: Wearing this Patagonia fleece (the same one as always #stillhibernatingforwinter) and these fleece-lined tights (again, same ones as always, no shame) and these sunglasses. This is the mirror I have in the mudroom and you can find a similar-ish gold-framed print here.
Sleep. I’ve always been more of a “quality over quantity” person when it comes to sleep and my alarm goes off at 5:30 every morning. I do everything right. I go to bed at the same time every night, I drink sleepy time tea right before, I keep the bedroom very dark and quiet, and I actually fall asleep really quickly and easily. Lately though, I’ve started to think that maybe there’s something to be said for getting a large quantity of sleep too. I know that this is common knowledge, but I’ve always kind of hoped that this rule didn’t apply to me. I’ve been sleeping in more on weekends (well, more for me) and I even slept for ten whole hours one night a couple of weeks ago when we were camping, because what else was there to do when it’s dark out at camping? And every time I sleep a little extra, the world doesn’t end. And the day that follows is usually a little more pleasant too. Well see if I’m still onboard with this whole extra sleep thing when summer rolls around, but at the very least, I know it’s a good investment in my long-term health and there’s definitely something to be said for that.
It took me a full week to get our laundry all done after camping. Anyone who knows me won’t be surprised to find out that I always unpack our bags and suitcases right away whenever we get back from any kind of trip. The first load of laundry is always started within minutes of unlocking the front door. The last of it is usually put away by the end of the night and all laundry systems are back to normal by the next morning. This trip wasn’t any exception to the “start laundry right away” rule, but for some reason, I didn’t find myself actually getting to the last of the four sleeping bags until a week later. Between regular laundry, a busy shooting schedule, resulting after-shoot tiredness, and sheet washing day, I just couldn’t catch up. It’s such a funny little thing, because I know it’s normal for a lot of people to leave their suitcases unpacked for days or even weeks after a trip, but I was thoroughly discombobulated by having that hanging over my head. I always think that if some home keeping task doesn’t feel effortless, there’s some further simplification and decluttering that needs to be done, so I’m just trying to figure out where that is in this case. Do you always unpack right after a trip, or do you relax right away and worry about unpacking and laundry whenever you get to it?
NEWS AND FINDS
-We’ve been having neighborhood game nights every few weeks lately with a few of our neighbours and they’ve been so fun. Just an easy way for everyone to get together and we always end up laughing so much. Last week we played a game called Splurt and it was a good one! It’s just a simple deck of cards, so it’s easy to pack up, but it’s just one of those ones that gets a lot of funny responses from everyone but it’s also totally family friendly. You can order it here. I’m thinking it could be great for after dinner on Easter.
-Listen/Watch: Every once in awhile I tune in to an episode of The Minimalists Podcast. I can’t un-see the term “Clutter Coffins” from last week’s episode (I watch it on YouTube) describing our obsession with filling up basements, attics, and storage units with bins of organized (or unorganized) stuff, basically just clutter. I definitely found myself looking at all of my bins and baskets around the house in a new light.
-Did you know that some Birkenstock styles come in narrow sizes? Maybe this is something everyone else already knew, but I was excited to discover it! My old Birkenstocks are in rough-ish shape, but I love them, so I was looking for a new style to try and I discovered that the Yao comes in narrow. I feel like committing to a style of Birkenstocks is a big deal because they last for so many years and I wear mine so often, so I did a lot of research and looked at a lot of pictures. Anyway, they just arrived yesterday and I’m thrilled about them because my old ones were just a bit clunky on me and these are a perfect fit. Now I’m really ready for spring to get here!
-I’m so excited to be partnering with Thymes again soon to share some of my favorite products of their for spring. If you’re looking for a new favorite spring scent, you definitely need to check out their Gold Leaf fragrance as well as their Gold Leaf Gardenia. My package from them arrived a few days ago and it smelled like springtime in a box!
-These ezpacking packing cubes are my favorite. I did a collaboration with them years ago and I still use them any time we go anywhere. My code CREEKLINEHOUSE is still active for 15% off on their website! I also love these monogramed clear pouches as another, slightly more fancy option. I’m team clear pouches all the way when you want to actually be able to find your stuff. 🙂
-Word on the street is that there’s a Sephora sale going on starting on 4/7 (Thursday) and it’s pretty significant! Use the code SAVESPRING to save 20% off your entire order, as well as FREESHIP for, well, free shipping. 🙂 I usually keep things super simple, but I do have a few favorites that I’ll share because this is a great time to refresh some of your basics if you were going to be doing that anyway. This NARS foundation has become something I use daily, as well as this bronzer, and this highlighter to keep me looking healthy and alive. Not always an easy task through the winter months. 🙂 This serum is the best new skincare product that I’ve tried in a long time. I’m usually pretty “meh” about most of them. I use this “Amazing Grace” body wash daily. Here’s the eau de toilette version of the same scent for a really clean everyday fragrance. I love this iconic scent for something a little more special.
-I shared this on Instagram the other day, but Gap kids/teen jeans in size 14 are a perfect fit for someone who is regularly a size 00/24 petite. I bought these to be kind of a relaxed, everyday type of jean for spring and the length is just perfect. Also, the kids jeans seem to be just so much softer than the grownup ones. Just a great little trick to know about for my fellow short people. 🙂
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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.