Last month we got to visit some of our closest friends at a cabin in Kentucky, nestled a few hours away in the Appalachian mountains and let me say, it was so relaxing. Just that single day away from everything, with Derrik, with good friends - it was good. I found myself breathing more easily, taking my time. It was a good break before the end of wedding season, and the beginning of traveling, Thanksgiving, and Christmas (my favorite time of year!).
When the weather starts to get a little crisp and I need a jacket to take Hugo on his morning walk, I know fall is on the way. For someone who uses the word "cozy" to describe pretty much anything I think is lovely, inspires gratitude for the life God has blessed us with, or makes me feel like things are starting fresh again, this season is my season. Fall, you get me.
Have you ever come across one of those books full of illustrations of pleasant things to remind you of simple pleasures? I usually find myself smiling when I stop to look at them. In case you need a little help getting in the mood for fall, here's a sweet little list of small fall pleasures I'm thankful for. Good news, this list is calorie free!
Apple Picking. Granted, I haven't actually done this, but the thought is romantic! And with an orchard nearby, we don't really have much of an excuse not to do it.
Apple Cider with a shot of caramel.
Caramel Apples (can you tell I'm hungry?)
Soft blankets. The kind that's so soft it's almost as though you can't feel the blanket on your fingers. I hope that makes sense. Bonus points if it's from the land of cozy, Pottery Barn.
Stove Simmers. Cinnamon, cloves, orange peel. I'm waiting for a scratch and sniff feature for the blog :)
Smelling the sunset. That's a thing right? When the leaves are orange, the light is golden, and the sun is saying goodbye for the day with a light breeze, it just smells like a big hug outside.
Pumpkin Patches. And pictures of babies in plaid shirts sitting beside pumpkins in pumpkin patches. The cuteness!
Pinterest. Pinterest is the queen of fall. I log on and immediately feel as though my weekend should be filled with gluing crisp leaves to Hugo's collar or some other elaborate baking project that involves leaf cookie cutters and icing decorating tutorials.
Blogging. What's almost just as good as experiencing fall? Talking and writing about it! Anne of Green Gables got it right when she said half the fun is in the anticipation.
Reading outside. When the weather is nice, laying out a blanket and taking your time with a great book can be one of the best ways to relax. Add a caramel apple and I'll be over in 5 minutes.
And to finish off this list, I thought I'd share this video from a blog I just found a few weeks ago (and check almost daily now!), The Inspired Room. The beautiful illustrations show of some of the things on this list, plus some others I'm sure we all love.
A lot happened for the Nelson family this summer! First up, I'd like to introduce you to our little fur ball of love.
Meet Hugo! This little guy has brought us so much joy since we brought him home in June. A true southern gentleman with an affinity for smoked ham and teddy bears that squeak, he's stolen our affections and I'm quite okay with it. We adopted him from Louie's Animal Rescue in Cincinnati, Ohio. He's a 6 year old corgi mix (we think he's mixed with german shepherd). He's very low key, with cuddles at top priority (we call him our little cuddle beast). But if you start "sqeaking" his mini teddy bear toy, he'll become your new best friend and play with you for hours.
I've wanted a dog since I was a little girl, so adopting Hugo is a lifelong dream come true. And I can confidently say he was well worth the wait! Welcome home, Hugo.
New Job, New House
Shortly after bringing Hugo home, I ended up landing a new job! The only drawback is not being able to work from home and be with Hugo all day, but I'm grateful to do something I enjoy with people who make me laugh every day.
Just in case a new furry friend and job isn't enough change at once, we decided to buy a house! Our search only lasted around a month, but I was definitely ready to settle down and get things moving by the time we found the house we ultimately closed on.
It takes me a little while to really adjust and feel familiar in a new home. No surprise, but walking through our apartment all empty was kind of sad for me. I saw the outlines of where our furniture was just a few days earlier, when things felt pretty normal and in sync.
I'm so grateful for our new home and it's a good change. It's just that walking through it empty brought back a lot of good memories, like sleeping on the floor in a sleeping bag the night we drove up to Louisville from Florida with everything we owned. We had our first wedding anniversary there, Christmas days, our first experience living in snow, first classes of Seminary, new jobs, new friendships, new careers even. And lots of yummy meals of course, with either Gilmore Girls, The Office, or Parks and Recreation playing in the background on a regular basis. That cozy apartment with the red door was a blessing.
Here are some photos of the most "done" room in the house so far - our dining room. We bought this antique armoire to help store some of our kitchen appliances and I think it adds to the space in that "Joanna Gaines found this at a treasure trove antique market" kind of way.
The fact that it can be locked with a key makes me feel like it's an heirloom from the Beauty and the Beast set or something. It's easily become my favorite piece of furniture in the house.
Now it's time to focus on learning our new home. It's quirks, charm, potential. My Pinterest boards are bursting with ideas and inspiration. I'm excited to take my time, room by room. Make it ours.