Happy Friday, friends! I hope your fall is off to a great start. We’ve had a lot going on, so we aren’t settling into a routine yet quite as well as I would have hoped, but we’re getting there. Just the fact that I’ve found time to sit down to chat with you is proof of that. Lots of fun little things to report from the last couple of weeks. 🙂
We went to visit Kennedy for the first time since she moved to Toronto a few weeks ago and it was the best. We took Jack out of school for a couple of days so we could do some touristy things with him while we were there without all the big crowds. He had the chance to do a lot of “real” Toronto things while we were there getting Kennedy moved in, but he really wanted to play tourist a bit and do some of the attractions, so we did. It’s been so amazing to see how well Kennedy has just immediately settled into life in the city and I’m so glad we’ve always made a point of spending a bit of time walking around the streets, eating in real restaurants, and just letting our kids kind of picture themselves living there. It’s so important to me that they be able to feel comfortable in a busy city environment as well as in the middle of the country or out in the woods somewhere. That way they can always feel like they have access to the best that the world has to offer, no matter where it is.
Somehow, we managed to keep up our fall apple-picking tradition this year and I’m so glad we did. We managed to bring Kennedy back from Toronto with us for the weekend after our visit and it happened to be the weekend that we usually go apple picking every year. It was a bit of a rush since we fit our orchard trip in one day between a soccer game for Jack and then taking Kennedy around visiting to various family members so she could fill everyone in on her first few weeks of university, but we got the apples, did the haunted barn, and the kids ate their caramel apples on the car ride home, just like always. I didn’t make my apple sauce or my apple cake, but I did manage to whip up a quick apple crisp for breakfast the next day, so I was pretty proud of that.
Fall decor is happening around here in a big way this year. Well, it hasn’t happened yet, but it will be happening. So far, I’ve just been trying to put out one little fall thing around the house each day. It’s funny, some years, I’m just not that into the whole fall decor thing, and it all seems like a lot of clutter, and then other years I’m really in the spirit. This year, I’m definitely into it, 100%. 🙂
An update on Jack’s new soccer team: They’ve now played several games over in Michigan, and they’re getting absolutely smashed (as Chris and Jack say). And he loves it anyway. 🙂 Jack’s actually been playing super well and he’s loving the challenge of playing these teams who are so well-organized and so cohesive. His team is just new, so they’re still learning to play together, but they’re just having the best experience. We have a few games this weekend, so we’re actually staying overnight, and we have a tournament in a few weeks where we’ll stay in a hotel again. It’s so important to us that he gets to have that part of the experience because he’s just the kind of kid who loves that type of thing. So this part of the soccer adventure has been a big success so far.
I’m happy to report that I’m making good use of the Le Creuset I bought myself for my birthday this spring, and it’s coming in handy for all kinds of fall soups and stews. It makes cooking these cozy meals just a little more satisfying. I hesitated in buying one for myself for years because I just wasn’t sure what size, color, and shape to get. I ended up going with a classic white oval dutch oven, which I think was the right choice for how I do my everyday cooking. It’s not just a pretty decorative piece that sits on my stove; I actually use it, which was how I was hoping it would work out. For a little extra fun, I ordered a replacement gold knob to switch out with the classic stainless steel knob that it comes with. You can also order copper, black, and rose gold knobs, and they’re easy to switch out, so you can really customize it if you want a new look in a few years. So much fun.
NEWS AND FINDS
-Articles from The Creek Line House are now being syndicated by MSN! This is kind of a big deal because it allows me to reach a bigger audience, but also just because it’s kind of a validation that the articles I put out here on my little blog are good quality, interesting, useful articles. They don’t take just any junk over there. Anyway, if you use msn as your homepage, hopefully you’ll see an article from me pop up on your screen every now and then!
-If you’re on the petite side like me and you’re looking for a practical fall jacket for things like sitting on the side of soccer fields, just a heads up that Patagonia kids’ size XL is a perfect fit for someone who’s regular a women’s size XXS/00 petite. I was looking at ordering a Patagonia puffer for Jack, and I realized that the kids’ version of the jacket is about $200 less expensive than the women’s, and it’s the same. So we’re both getting kids’ puffer jackets this fall. 🙂 Since they last forever, I can just give him mine when he grows out of his current one.
-There’s just something about a stack of fresh tea towels, isn’t there? I’ve been on the hunt for good dark navy tea towels with no white on them and I found these when I was at Williams Sonoma in Toronto last week. I’ve become one of those people who are really picky about their tea towels and my old ones were getting really sad looking because I couldn’t find replacements and now I have and all is right in my kitchen. 🙂
-I got an Ina Garten shirt and I love it. Again, it’s a kids’ shirt, but I think it’s really a perfect match for Ina’s signature oversized denim shirt. I got the gap kids size 14 and it just sparks joy. So neat.
-Favorite photo of the week: This actually isn’t an Art & Spaces photo this week, but one I snapped quickly of the sidewalk patio where I had my coffee in Toronto while Chris and Jack walked over to the CN tower last week. It’s Dineen at Yonge and Temperance if you’d like to visit too. As I sat there with my coffee and my muffin, seven little birds and one big pigeon came over and sat with me patiently, waiting to see if I’d drop a crumb. A few of them even hopped up on the stool and the table, but they never bothered me once. It was the cutest and I’ll leave you with that for this week.
MORE RECENT POSTS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED
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- Easy Vegan Pumpkin Recipes to Try This Fall
- My Picks for 10 Best Washable Rugs for 2023
- Three Ingredient Pumpkin Bread
- Simple Baked Apple Chips
- Five Things on a Friday – 9/15/23
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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.