- Crafting: autumn Waldorf window stars to bring some color and warmth into our home as we inch towards cooler temperatures. Stella and I also made some ghosts out of wool and silks last October and this year we hung them in the foyer. So cute! Here is another Waldorf window star tutorial for recycled newspaper.
- Reading: Not as much as I usually do, but that’s alright. This summer threw me a bit and I am getting back on track making time for things I love, such as getting lost in a good page-turner. That being said, Stella, Andrew and I are reading Stewart Little before bed. It’s so sweet getting all tucked in and reading several chapters with her. She has seen the movie but the details in the book are so much richer, and she’s finally beginning to understand why mom loves to read so much before seeing it on the big screen.
- Growing: a baby! you probably already know this, but we are indeed expecting! I am in my second trimester due April 1st. I found out today that baby is as big as a wee pumpkin – I am 15 weeks. So many things are different this pregnancy, and right now I am just taking it slow and enjoying being a home for a baby one last time. If you’d like, I’d be happy to share more about it here.
- Watching: Downton Abbey for, don’t make fun of me, the first time ever! I am in love. Why didn’t I start this ages ago? Anyway it’s the perfect show to watch this season while I rest and grow this baby. Andrew and I are watching Succession each Sunday night on HBO and it’s so good.
- Baking: maple pumpkin muffins (I’ve got a batch in the oven right now!) and pies and soups. This Chicken Pot Pie is on rotation right now, as is my Shepherd’s Pie. Usual autumn fare, and happy to be well enough to make it.
- Organizing: the entryway to make it more suitable for our growing family. I have been slowly replacing all the hooks with Shaker pegs and plan on painting them white today. Because our home is older, it does not have many of the perks new homes have like coat closets etc. This space is essential in keeping things orderly, and I think my new system will be a great help this season especially.
- Sipping: coffee! I can finally make and drink coffee again and every sip is HALLELUJAH!
- Loving: having several mornings each week to myself. The kids are in school from 9-1 am some days during the week and it frees me up to take things slow. It’s a new rhythm for me as a mother, and I appreciate every minute.
- Trying: to sell old furniture we no longer need and or use. We are turning our basement into a storeroom for my shop that’s set to open soon! Yes, I am opening a little online shop. My business partner and I are working everyday to make this come to life and it’s terribly exciting.
- Dreaming: about whether or not this baby will be a boy or a girl. Stella is certain it’s a girl, Alfie is certain it’s a boy, and Theodore just calls him or her baby and is happy with whatever. I am leaning towards girl, but truth be told, I was also certain Alfie was a girl when we didn’t find out and surprise! So who knows. We find out soon and will be sharing!
- Chopping: no firewood as of now because we found out our fireplace is in need of major repair. Again, old house stuff. Arg. It’s going to be around $5,000 (at least) to fix, so we are saving up to get that done but it’s also not a necessity. Home repairs are hard.
- Picking: bushels of apples and pears from my sister-in-law’s home from the country. She recently sold it, but we were able to load up on heaps of fresh fruit just a few days ago and plan on having one big canning party soon to made due with the goods. Honestly, we have so much I don’t know what the heck we are going to do with all of it. I am definitely thinking spiced pear and apple butter will be our holiday gifts this year.
- Listening: to old On Being episodes like this one with Mary Oliver and this one with John O’Donohue. Like reading, I haven’t been listening to much music lately and am kind of in a rut. If you have any suggestions, drop them below!
- Wearing: stretching everything from my favorite maternity brand Storq. If you are expecting, I highly recommend their clothing. I am also cozy in favorite Babaa wool cardigan. I wear it nearly everyday, and it’s still as cozy as ever.
- Nesting: probably too much. But it’s a switch that’s been flipped and now all I see everywhere are projects to be done with energy to do them! I don’t remember nesting coming on this hard, but it is what it is.
- Trying: to spend less time on social media and it’s so hard for me. I wish it wasn’t, but it is. When I was sick during my first trimester I built some rather poor habits, and it seems that undoing them is proving much harder than I’d like. I need some strict boundaries in place, since my work is after all, online. I am considering doing two days off social a week, and seeing how that feels. It’s just so tempting.
- Pondering: whether or not to do a Rest Retreat this year. I am leaning towards yes, and want to create a new one but also know that I have a million + 1 things on my plate. Perhaps that’s precisely why I should make and do it.
- Thanking: God that most of my morning sickness has lifted. I know I keep mentioning it, but it was truly awful. Like two months with the flu while still being mom. I am just grateful to be able to do simple things at home again, like make meals and read to my kids and fold laundry.
- Wanting: to revisit the book I wrote, which I set aside a few months ago, when the publishers and I did not see eye to eye. ‘Tis life. I wanted to include things that they did, as a Christian company, and here we are. I think about it everyday, throughout the day, and how I want to improve it and make it better. It’s nearly done, but there are a few key components missing. I do not want to rush this process, but I also know as an Enneagram 4 that putting things off until they are perfect is something I do well. I am trying to let go of that, but like social media, it’s hard. Oy. Now I am really thinking the Rest Retreat is a must do and during that time I will put the final bits together to make my work a real thing. I am so proud of all I’ve don’t thus far, but also scared.
- Enjoying: the long autumn season we are having in the Midwest so far. Can you believe the leaves just started to turn here? It’s kind of strange, given that it’s mid October and usually by now we are graced with golds and ambers and spice-colored leaves. But also, it’s nice to be taking this season slowly. Why rush it. I heard the other day that the Farmer’s Almanac predicts another long and cold winter, which A). has me excited because I will be using this time to hibernate and nest and B). anxious because of our fireplace. Making a fire is one of my favorite things to do on a cold winter’s day, and if we have to endure another five month winter, it surely makes things much cozier.
So, tell me. How are you dear reader? I feel as though I haven’t asked in awhile, and I miss you. I truly do. It’s my hope that you are enjoying this lovely season of falling away with pumpkin-spiced treats and candles and wheat wreaths. I am. xx Amanda
Bettie - I always find myself visiting your blog whenever I need some inspiration to tidy up my home. I love tucking into your posts, they’re always so lovely. Wishing you the best in the coming months.
admin - Bettie, thank you so much for reading here and taking the time to share this. It truly means a lot. xx Amanda
Lisa - It might be helpful to consider self-publishing for your book — I’ve noticed this trend in recent memory. I’m sure many of us would happily pay for an ebook download, and the proceeds would benefit you directly. What do you think?
Amanda - I am eagerly awaiting your book! I always feel peaceful after visiting your space. 🥳
admin - Amanda, thank you my friend! xx Amanda
admin - Lisa, I have considered this route, but really have my heart set on working with a publisher. I think there is more potential there for many reasons, and don’t feel a rush to get it done, so to speak. But I do admire those who take this route! If my book was smaller, say an E book, it would make sense, but what I have created this far is much bigger. Thank you for offering this idea though! xx Amanda
Ashley - I just LOVE reading anything you write. I feel we are quite similar in so many ways but I am working on making life slower + simpler and your ideas always give so much inspiration!
admin - Ashley, thank you so much for not only taking the time to visit this space, but to share such kind words. Wishing you a lovely weekend! xx Amanda
Tammy - Always look forward to your beautiful posts Amanda. Thank you for sharing all of the sweet and simple details of your life and home. Wishing you a quaint and cozy autumn!
admin - Tammy, thank you for such kind and encouraging words. Wishing you a cozy and restful weekend! xx Amanda
Chelsea Tracy - I’ve never watched Downtown Abbey either and I was just debating starting it, now i must!
social media is hard for me to right now as well, I go weeks without caring and then all of sudden I want to share all the things. I just deleted the apps once again off my phone. I was wanting to do a fast until the new year but it’s proving to be so difficult.
I can’t wait to see what you are having, I love that you are expecting again. I’ve followed you for so long now, I believe I started reading your blog when Theodore was born or a little before that. I’ve loved watching your family grow and I am always inspired by you.
My husband is also an enneagram four, so I find it helpful to read your thoughts to sometimes better understand him. I’m an two myself and I think it’s easy for me to want to fix everything for him when in reality most of the time he just wants to sit in it. (Can’t relate)
We are in Michigan and I our leaves are just now changing as well, I love it so much. I have a 7 month old and we have been taking so many cozy walks.
Hope all is well in your corner, please revisit writing your book, it would be a gift to the world to have it published.
admin - Chelsea, ohh my goodness are you ever in for a treat! It is such a good show, and especially delightful to watch this season I think. Andrew is a fixer too, and it’s been one of the harder parts of our marriage trying to understand one another because I tend to hold space whereas he’d rather I fix! I love how Enneagram can help us gain perspective in relationships like this. And thank you for saying what you did about my book. I definitely plan to! Take care and have a great weekend up north. xx Amanda
Mandy - I love these inspiring posts and am so glad that you can share these beautiful little moments of your sweet life ❤️🍁✨
admin - Mandy, thank you for reading and sharing dear one! Have a beautiful weekend 🙂 xx Amanda
Andrea - Thank you for sharing all our lovely ‘ings’. I think they are some of my favourite of your posts 🙂 We are in the midst of fireplace difficulties as well. Our house is 100 years old and draughty, and the winters are cold, and we’ve been saving up and working on putting in a wood stove forever. So many random road blocks with old houses though! I have fingers crossed that this winter we will indeed have cozy fires. So glad you are feeling better and enjoying your nesting! I am 19 weeks with my third right now, and you are inspiring me with the nesting bug. Happy Autumn xx
admin - Andrea, thank you! They are among my favorite posts to write. Oh, we dream of a wood stove! We talk about taking the bench out in the loft and putting one there, which will most likely one day be our master bedroom but is now our living area. There is something so nostalgic and cozy about a log burning stove, and I particularly love the really tiny ones 🙂 Congrats on your pregnancy, I am a few weeks behind ya! And happy weekending! xx Amanda
Andrea - Oh, that sounds so cozy! It is fun to dream of ‘one-days’ in our houses 🙂
Emory - I would love to hear more about your current pregnancy and how it has been different than your other 3 ❤️
admin - Emory, thanks for the feedback! I shall 🙂 Happy weekend! xx Amanda
Holly k - Loved hearing all of these! I’m pregnant along with you and this past hot summer has me rejoicing in the slowly cooling weather! I’m literally praising God every time I feel cold 🙌🏼 Your rest retreat started a journey for me last January that’s still on going. By the end of January I was astonished and humbled by how much extra time I saw in my days and I continued to soak up books and information and ultimately decided to not go back to the social media platforms I’d been using. If you are looking for inspiration for your rest retreat I can’t recommend the book Digital Minimalism by Cal Newport enough. It transformed the way I viewed social media and was so empowering. He doesn’t advocate for some black or white, strict use of it but instead suggests that we all should have a philosophy of use to govern our time spent with it. It echoed so much of your retreat from January! Anyway thank you for taking the time last year and always being the reminder I need that rest is essential however undervalued by our culture.
admin - Holly, congratulations mama! I too am loving this transition into cooler weather – bless it. I love hearing how much the Rest Retreat impacted you, as it did me as well. I can feel myself craving a reset in perspective and think the new month of January is the perfect time to do it. I will order that book, thank you for the recommendation. I have several books on limiting screen time and the why’s behind it etc. and this will be perfect to add. It’s such an interesting contradiction, working online yet knowing deep down that too much time and energy spent there is destructive. Hope you have a wonderful and restful weekend! xx Amanda
Julia - This was so fun to read and I think I’ve listened to that Mary Oliver/On Being episode three times. Such a strange, wonderful creature she was! Enjoy your free mornings – they sound delightful!. ♥️
admin - Julia, goodness me, isn’t is such a balm? I always feel so refreshed and encouraged after hearing her voice and soaking up her wisdom. And thank you for sharing, nice to know there are other On Being lovers out there. xx Amanda
Hayley - Hello Amanda! Your home is so lovely! We also have an old home, circa 1899. I love the pegs and the idea of extra space for storage. Where did you get all the supplies?
Anna - For music, check out Mandolin Orange and Caamp. Both amazing and wonderful to have playing in the car and at home 🙂
admin - Anna, my husband loves Mandolin Orange 🙂 We’ve been to a concert and they are just wonderful. Their rendition of Amsterdam is one of my favorites. Will check out Caamp today, thank you. xx Amanda
Kate - So glad to hear your feeling better through your pregnancy. Our old home has a small breezeway and that has been my fall project as well. Some fresh paint and in search of an antique dresser or desk to wedge in there for an entry table. Making space for hats and gloves and the such since we added a new baby to the family this summer. Congratulations again!
admin - Kate, little old dressers are the answer so many storage problems! and they are super cute too. and thank you! we are so excited. xx Amanda
Inge - Hi Amanda,
It’s been a while since I visited your website but, just like other readers over here, I enjoy it so much and it inspires me so much as well!! I had some down time from the internet but I was truly missing your blog.
Congratulations on your pregnancy! What a LOVELY news! I am so happy for you and your beautiful family.
Thanks again for all the things you write and good luck putting your phone down 😉 Maybe it works to remove the apps from your phone and only be ‘online’ on your laptop? Sure helped me a lot! Much love from Holland xx
Sandy - I just starting reading “The Way Home: Tales from a life without technology” by Mark Boyle. I’m only 50 pages in but it’s so very good and made me think you you. 🙂
admin - Sandy, I have not heard of this one. Thank you for sharing! xx Amanda