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Thursday, October 5, 2017

What I Have Been Up To




I've been really stressed out lately, as many of you have. And by "lately" I probably mean most of the last year. I have often felt distracted from enjoying things like posting on my blog, and haven't been feeling very creative. Sort of slogging through in slow motion. I think I have started to unload on you here! But all I mean to say is that there are parts of my life that are constant in the chaos, and I want to keep sharing them with you because they are a solace and a help to me.





Besides the obvious things that folks turn to, like faith and family, I also turn to simplicity, and the ordinary joys and beauties that can bring a small lift in a dark time. I'm pretty sure that this is where the tradition of giving flowers comes from. 





But one of my big soothers is working with freshly laundered linens, and ironing. It gives me a way to reorder the world. And you might also be surprised at how calming going through the motions of it can be. Cooking, knitting, gardening, or writing might be what does it for you.





I have also been cleaning out closets for a long time now, and giving stuff away. These are some of the linens that I have had tucked away for awhile. They are a small cache of antique monogrammed towels that have been kept from use over generations of time. Still in new condition. I am sure that for some of these samples, mine was the first washing they had ever had.





Some I will give away as gifts, but there is so much pleasure in using old linens in exactly the way they were originally intended, that I will keep some for use myself.




Here is a stack of three hefty linen towels with my own first two initials on them!





I also take pleasure in the hunt for interesting old vintage things. I bet that's a stress buster for a lot of people! These old shakers are a nice homey addition for my pretend farmhouse kitchen.





I recently went looking for new fall decorations for the shop, and found silk flowers half off at the hobby shop. I don't keep many faux flowers at home, but I was surprised to learn how much these imitations cheerily fooled my eye! I have them plopped in an old vintage florist's basket.





 I know that white doesn't do it for everyone, but white is my high energy and peace color.









Silver is also a fall and winter thing to me, and I was happy to find a pretty new vintage ladle for all of our cold weather soups and stews. The platter is perfect for the holidays ahead, and I had been searching for one just like it. The vintage pewter candlesticks will never even need a polishing! All recent finds.









So that is about as creative as it gets for me these days. On one hand, it is about as shallow as life can get. On the other, it is about sharing some of the upside, and the good things in life that could easily be taken for granted. About keeping on, and keeping contact. Keeping connections in a sometimes seeming disconnected world.









So I will share what I am up to these days even if it is nothing very special, and I hope that you do too.

Keep sharing the beauty!

Jacqueline






26 comments:

donna baker said...

I thought of you just the other day Jacqueline, when I saw an ecru cutwork tablecloth. I too love white and alway wanted to live in an all white house and now I do. But, nobody does white like you. I'm stuck in a dark brown booth that I hate, but I'd hate having to take all out and paint it, so it stays. I don't do chaos gracefully and worry about every tiny thing under the sun. Big hug. It'll pass. PS - you actually make ironing sound fun. I can smell it now.

Michele said...

Oh, Jacqueline, you do beauty like no other!

Whereas I don't have your love of laundering or ironing gorgeous linens, but I truly ADORE your style, always have. And my love of white and neutrals is spot on with yours.

I hope you find peace within. You most certainly have the right frame of mind in identifying your stress relievers....which is half the battle most times.

Hugs. ♥

Roosterhead Designs said...

Hello to you Jacqueline~
I (too) have been going thru 'much' and have not blogged
in nearly a year. But I still stop into my favorite places,
yours being one of them : ) and you always touch my heart <3
I don't usually comment - but I wanted you to know I appreciate
your posts and always enjoy what you show and say~
Thank you Jacqueline for sharing the beauty.
(I hope some day to be able to post again)
Hugs, Kare
PS I love ironing linens~

Louca por porcelana said...

Everything is beautiful here...Gorgeous linens.The white flowers don't look faux and they are lovely.Hugs.

Debra Oliver said...

Blogging is an outlet for me, a place to attempt creativity and find inspiration. I've thought of stopping, but it helps me stay sane at times. I love sharing and connecting with others, but sometimes feel that what I have to show isn't interesting or relevant. I guess we all feel that way at times. But please know we all sense that place of peace when we come to visit you. Keep sharing your lovely world with all the rest of us, we need it too. xoxo

NanaDiana said...

I can hardly believe it! Someone else that loves to launder and iron linens! OMGOSH- I thought I was a dinosaur. lol I always iron my pillowcases, too, because I like the look and feel of them.

I have been using treasured linens, too. I have decided they are no good to anyone packed away where they never see the light of day. I treasure them. xo Diana

At Rivercrest Cottage said...

I agree with Debra above. Visiting your blog, with the beautiful white linens all laundered and ironed, somehow makes me feel all could be right with my world if I just slow down and smell (even the faux) flowers and iron my sheets instead of letting the drier do it halfway. Thank you for spending the time to share with us.

Salmagundi said...

The events of these past few months have bothered me to the point that it has chewed into any creativity around the house. Therefore, I haven't had much to blog about. However, my sewing room and my quilting cheers me up; so that helps. My ironing board is in there, but all I do is press my quilting endeavors. I should be cleaning out the linen closet, wash and iron everything up, and smell that special 'clean and ironed' smell!!! Take care, Sally

Linda @ Itsy Bits And Pieces said...

There is nothing shallow about making a peaceful, calm home...it is our safe place.
Your posts always bring me a sense of peace...thank you for sharing such beauty! xoxo

Marilyn Miller said...

I love what you are up to these days. When I have a particularly tough week I pick up my camera and go to my favorite antique mall and browse with my camera. It does wonders for me. Love, love all the white I see here. Wishing I could buy another set of pillowcases, I just love the set I acquired in Albuquerque.

elizabeth said...

Beauty ministers to our souls in troubled times. Keep sharing!

sweet violets said...

Thank you for sharing......and for sharing your beautiful linens. I also love pressing linens a connection with history, esp. family items.

This has also been a not so good year for me, not one creative spark, I am worn out from it all!! My outlet is cooking and cleaning the kitchen, if it is all in order then my life must be too!!! No??? xoxoxo

Katie Mansfield said...

Beautiful. Keep sharing beautiful things. The tray looks amazing.

Junkchiccottage said...

Life can be so hard sometimes. Glad you find solace in your beautiful linens and the simple things in life.
Swooning as always over your beautiful pictures.
Hugs.

Glenda said...

Hmmm, I see we share a common thread in feeling the stress of living in a world of upheaval. But on a brighter side, we also share a love of the simple, cherished possessions of yesteryear. The one exception that separates our "alikeness" is your love of the desert and my love of green pastures and rolling hills. And yet I feel we are connected. (Hi Kris, love how your new/old Junk Chic Cottage is coming along. Such inspiration!)

Teddee Grace said...

You said it so well. I've commented to several people over the last months as things seem to just be swirling down the drain that I guess this hobby of mine...thrift shopping in my case (and I'm a good picker if I do say so!), crafting, changing the decor out in my one-bedroom apartment for the seasons and sharing my talents with the other residents in the small area outside my apartment door where we are allowed to decorate...seems shallow. But, you know, it keeps me sane, gives joy to many and if I can offset the ugliness with a little beauty and calm perhaps I'm doing my part.

suzana borlovan said...

We all need to find inner peace and which ever activity brings us joy, we need to embrace it, I surely do. Mine is crocheting or gardening or swimming dependant on the time of year.
Jacqueline I have a question of how do you keep the linens white, my late mother in law gave me some old yellowed in places linen and I'm afraid I am going to ruin them.
Any advice is appreciated.
Suzana

sarah said...

Beauty, calm simplicity, and homemaking - these are gifts to our society, they are the things that hold us and ease us when we need it - really, there is nothing more important. I am grateful for the warriors but equally so for the peacekeepers.

Judy at GoldCountryCottage said...

Jacqueline, just one look at what you enjoy and love and calmness and peace take over. I was shocked when you said the flowers were not real, they sure do fool the eye. Your writing and your photography of the things you love make the best of a crazy world and when you share with us, we get to join in the beauty of it all..Happy Weekend..Judy

Pat @ bringingfrenchcountryhome said...

Hello my friend Jacqueline. I think everybody feels this way now and then so you're not alone. All I can say is it will get better. Hang in there and know that your lovely blog gives many of us a feeling of peace and beauty. Big hugs from Colorado, Pat

Debby Goes Shabby said...

Dear Friend

I love your blog and am so glad you shared your beauty! Love everything you love! I also feel the same as you do but I continue to post beautiful things, some Post better than others.

Debby
Debbygoesshabby.blogspot.com

Sissie's Shabby Cottage said...

Jacqueline,
Isn't it amazing that we all have our own ways of dealing with stress and we have the ability to find joy in small things. I think that's what blogging is all about. It's sharing the little things that make us happy and telling it to those who get us. I share your love of vintage linens and there is nothing better than bringing a shabby piece of linen back to life by washing and ironing it and placing a pretty string or ribbon around it or using fine pieces throughout our homes.
I hope that you will find less stressful days ahead and keep sharing your beautiful thoughts and photos.

hugs,
Sissie

Beatrice Euphemie said...

I think these simple tasks of home-making keep us grounded in a world that sometimes seems completely out of control. We can at least keep our own little world in order and full of beauty, and I think you have achieved that task, dear Jacqueline, and have also brightened the day of all who visit your beautiful blog. Your lovely white world is so peaceful. Sending hugs xo Karen

Jeanie said...

This post is so very thoughtful. More than ever, I think we have all needed to find our peace place (and color -- mine is aqua) to help keep us sane or at least not in perpetual anxiety. (OK -- I'm going to say a really shallow thing that I'm even embarrassed to say but I was actually relieved, after a mass shooting, three major hurricanes, two earthquakes, another hurricane on the way and politics which I won't even go into -- to read about Harvey Weinstein. Now, that's a terrible thing, which is why I feel AWFUL saying this, but it was definitely a break in the action. Finally, something to talk about that isn't political. Except it is. But that's how desperate I've become.)

So, a) I never think you are shallow and b) you have found a way to find calm in chaos. Three cheers.

La Vie Quotidienne said...

Just looking at your lovely posts always make me feel better. They are not only beautiful but carry a sense of tranquility.

Linda said...

OH my dear Jacqueline....
Your take on beautiful things has always stayed with me....especially that gorgeous crocheted blanket of yours💓
I too love ironing....a lost art for sure! I grew up ironing my Dads and brothers shirts....
And pillowcases...
Life can be really strange....hang in there....you are a beautiful person....
Cheers!
Linda :o)

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