romantic homes & celebrating everyday life

Marian ParsonsHoliday33 Comments

Since Thanksgiving, a cough and cold has been kicking my rear!  Between that and my shoulder that is still sore, I have been loafing a lot more than usual.  So, while there is cleaning that could be done and decorating that I want to do and paint brushes that are calling my name, I have had to put all of that off until I’m feeling up to it.

So, today, I am just sharing some holiday/Christmas inspiration found in good, old-fashioned magazines.

The first one is a new magazine published by Country Sampler – Celebrating Everyday Life.  It’s exciting for me to introduce it to you, because one of my long-time blog friends, Jennifer Carroll, is the editor of the special issue publication!

The magazine is filled with pretty pictures, recipes, and decorating ideas and it also includes my PA house decorated for Christmas…

Jennifer also included The Home Design Doodle Book in the gift round-up section.

And the December issue of Romantic Homes magazine, which is also edited by a long-time blog friend, Courtney of The French Country Cottage, includes a feature of my PA home as well…

I share these magazines, because it’s always an honor to be featured.  It doesn’t matter how many times it happens, there is always a thrill that accompanies it.  And I’m also proud of my friends.  There was a time when home decor bloggers on the whole weren’t taken seriously and now I see them acknowledged and accomplishing huge things.  As someone who loves to cheer on creative entreprenuers, that makes me happy.

As I looked through those features of my house, though, I had mixed emotions.  A part of me misses things about my old house and the 11 years of work we put into it.  We got it to the point where it was easy to decorate for Christmas, because I was just adding some final layers to make it feel festive.

On the flip side, it was good motivation to keep plugging away, working on this house.  A part of me feels stuck some days, seeing how much sewing and painting and small projects are on my to-do list.  But a house is made into a home one project at a time and it isn’t something that happens overnight (or even in four months.)  It takes years to let the space evolve until it’s finally to the point where decorating for Christmas is just the finishing touch – the icing on the cake.

But, getting there is half the fun.

Most of the time.

romantic homes & celebrating everyday life

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33 Comments on “romantic homes & celebrating everyday life”

  1. I read the article last night in Romantic Homes. It was awesome!

    We, too, moved a thousand miles away a few years ago, and everything those first few months was hard…buying groceries, finding a vet for our dogs, trying to establish new traditions, where to get cars serviced, etc. Even though it didn’t last long (we moved back to our home town about a year later), it certainly opened my eyes to a lot of things.

  2. I so relate to feeling stuck. We just moved into a new construction! Oh my, I see months of refining and details ahead like wood or barnwood shutters for the front windows. All this yet to go even though I was on the site most days. But there has to be time for the organic process, the cnversation between me and the structure and us and our things.
    But I did get a great magnolia and burlap ribbon festoon up over the stone arch entry. She also made some large matching tea cup arrangements which I moved around the house during Thnaksgiving entertaining. I am trying to start with Thankful and move through the tasks ahead with grace and patience. I find that the process you share encourages that.

  3. Sometimes, when we don’t feel up to doing big projects, looking at magazines feeds and nourishes our soul. Our bodies can rest and at the same time, our minds can let our creativity take flight!
    Thank you for this post today, it is the perfect time of year to rest as much as we work so we can enjoy Christmas and all the wonderful and magical things that come our way at this special time of year.

    1. Absolutely true!!! It is why I lament the seeming dying off of the magazine industry. Many of us want to hold the real pages in our hands, not view electronic images.

  4. I love looking through the home decorating magazines to find inspiration for my own home. Sometimes a room gets stuck and you need a little help. What an honor to be featured in one (or two)! Congrats to you for the accomplishment!

  5. A professional magazine editor told me once that I read a cook book like a novel. I think she was right many years ago and I am still reading anything to entertain my creative side and wish list. Just seeing that secretary with the wreath
    inspired me to do the same thing to my open secretary. Thanks.

  6. I hope you feel better soon. I also get overwhelmed with all the projects I want to get done. It eats away at celebrating the things I have actually accomplished. I have been blown away with all that you have done with your home. All done while you are running a business and being mom. Great job Marian! You have such a talent for inspiring people.

  7. The pics of your Pa home tugged at my heartstrings…my favorite room was your dining room…those beautiful corner hutches ! All the best to you Marion…… Anne

  8. I understand, too, taking the needed time to make a place a home. This home is our 12th house (and several apartments in addition to that number!) so just know that it does indeed take time. Get some physical rest and some downtime, too. You’ll get done whatever truly needs doing. Enjoy your fireplace and a cup of hot chocolate!

  9. You have done so much, so soon Marian, it’s astonishing. Meanwhile the rest of us struggle and ponder with our problem rooms and areas of our houses for YEARS. I am working on the living room this afternoon! No matter what, there is no way to get the layout right, since the room is small (12′ x 15′) and has to hold a piano, a sofa, and 2 arm chairs, and has a large opening and 2 window areas. At least I don’t have a fireplace in there too. And this is a room I am trying to decorate for Christmas now also. I am starting off by removing everything and cleaning! A lot of days I just sit in there and stare and PONDER. We moved in a year ago and I still can’t get it right.

  10. I remember the homesickness I suffered after we moved into this newer, two-story house from our small, brick ranch which I had remodeled from one end to the other. As soon as I finished all the remodeling … we moved. Thankfully it was just about two miles away but I still grieved my house – my home where Al and I got engaged and our first home as a married couple; where we first brought our children home from Romania to; where we cared for my parents until they passed away. It was so painful and I cried many night. Not to mention the new neighbors are not friendly; we had warm relationships with all our old ones. It was so hard! I’ll be honest, the first year was the worst. Why would I want to upgrade *another* house? It was so hard, and quite a while, before I found my mojo again to make this house my own. So be gentle with youself, rest a lot, fly back to south-central PA to visit old friends (I know, right?! I’ll send you a travelers check lol). Conclusion: it just takes time. Love ya, Marian, hang in there. And major congratulations on the magazine spots!

  11. Congratulations on being featured in two magazines! A wonderful way to share your talents, and unique and beautiful creativity. I so appreciate how you keep to your own look, without letting whatever is trending-and-hot-this-minute have any influence over your own style. In contrast to many of the stories above, I grew up in a large home that my parents had custom-designed and built. We lived there from elementary school until I was in college. Then my father became ill; my parents sold the big, dream home, and moved into a older home, about half the size. I don’t miss the big house at all; it lacked character and warmth. The little house (where I live now) is over 60 years old, full of quirks and a weird layout, but I adore it. DH and I did a remodel 10 years ago, and added much more details. It’s so interesting how our homes become part of our heart.

  12. One day, yes just This One day is my new motto. Our beloved son recently passed and the thought of Christmas without him is heartbreaking. We have always been a Christmas family and I know God has given us strength for This One day. Bless you and stay strong my friend.

    1. Cindy,

      I’m so sorry for the loss of your son, just the thought of losing a child is unimaginable. I’ll keep your family in prayer this season and hope that you are able to stay strong one day at a time. God bless you!

  13. I am off to the magazine section of the grocery store….I will sneak in ~ because I advised my husband to put blinders on me when we pass by this section….gosh, I can’t resist! Can’t wait to find inspiration thru-out the pages! Enjoy looking at your ‘work’…..

    Hope you feel better soon….I’ve been down and out since the beginning of November…so hard to get ‘it’ back. Hope you’re on the upside soon!

    Hugs and Chicken Soup,

  14. As much as I enjoy Pinterest and IF there are magazines I cannot live without . Simply so relaxing, from this crazy stress filled world we live in. So glad you have been featured, your decor is so classy !

  15. Good gosh, sick on a holiday? My sympathies, Plus wishes for getting well soon.

    Congrats on your PA house being featured in decorating magazines. It makes me look forward to seeing your new place featured. Some before-and-after articles are already in order for a magazine feature or two, especially the kitchen and studio.

  16. Thank you for today’s blog. I so love to look thru magazines and hold them in my hands. I am one of the “die-hards” that refuses to give up my subscriptions. It’s so funny, just yesterday I decided I needed to go thru and clean out some of my beloved magazines and pass them to my daughter who is in her first home. I had no idea that I have in my stash 13 years of Country Sampler along with all the special issues. This is only one of the many subscriptions I can’t let go.

    Congratulations for being featured in the decorating magazines.

  17. What a joy it is to see my magazine here on your blog Marian!! I am so honored to have shared your wonderful talent and your gorgeous home on its pages!! I can’t wait to pick up a copy of Romantic Homes too!! I know it can be bittersweet when you’ve moved on from a place you poured your heart into, but I am so excited about all that you are doing in your new home. As I am a year and a half into my new little farm I can relate to the feeling of more tasks than time, but as we keep chipping away, it continues to evolve into its own special haven. You are so talented and inspiring! Thank you for so generously cheering us all on and sharing your heart and your gifts with us!! I pray you feel better soon! xoxo, Jennifer

  18. Congrats on your two magazine features! I would just love to have my home in one someday.

    As much as I enjoy Pinterest and other online decor sites, there is just something about having something printed that you can hold in your hands. I really love home magazines! Plus, you can’t look at Pinterest while you take a bubble bath;)

  19. I needed this. 6 years in and life is too busy and the bankroll too small to accomplish a whole lot. But little tiny bits at a time is better than nothing! One day I will be icing my cake with ease as well. Thanks for the encouragement.

  20. I think its only human to have bittersweet feelings when seeing your prior PA home featured in a magazine. I am sure it brings back many wonderful memories especially at this time of year. I am going to ask you a silly question to whether or not you had any dreams of your prior home since moving? I ask this because while I love my current home of 25 years, I still will on occasion have a dream that we are moving back to our former home that we lived in for 5 years when we were first married. I know its odd!

    Nurse that cold and feel better soon.

  21. We moved on June 1st this year to our new home that we built. But we are finishing the interior construction ourselves now. So even the thought of decorations is a bit much for me. But we will have a tree and we have our family. And nothing could be sweeter than that. Poco-a-poco (bit by bit).

  22. Hope you’re feeling better soon Marian! Your body is telling you to rest so it can heal. Your old home was so adorable and with your decorating talents, your new home will look warm and cozy by next Christmas too!

  23. I also feel stuck on so many days. I’ve had so many big projects that had to be done on my home that finishing touches always seem to go to the bottom of the priority list. Christmas gets me motivated because the house looks full and festive and I know spring is just around the corner…

  24. Romantic Homes is one of my very favorite decor magazines and it was especially nice to see one of my 3 favorite bloggers spotlighted within its December pages. Just beautiful! Everything did falll into place beautifully in your PA home (after a lot of thought and work from you) and it will in your new home as well. All in good time! Enjoy the season 🎄🎄🎄

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