January Musings, Still-at-Home Edition

at home.

I have to be honest, I never imagined that over two years into this pandemic predicament, I would feel so isolated, trying to distract myself by keeping busy, marking the passage of time and wondering when things would get better (to which the answer seems to perpetually be “next month”).

In many ways, this parallels my younger parenting years: your time is spoken for, and at that time, it’s rightly not about you. It’s what led me to start this blog: I had so much to say and no one to say it to. Flash forward: most days my laptop is a jumble of open browser tabs, reminding me of special things to do/see/buy/discuss should the moment present itself and again, no one to talk to about it: which is where you come in.

In the spirit of my blog’s early days, here are a few things I’m enjoying in January 2022 that you might, too:

I recently fell in love with the concept (and branding) of Montrose Cheese & Wine … and thus by extension, Studio Robert McKinley, who is also responsible for the interior design at Hotel Kinsley, which has been on my must-see list ever since Happy Menocal shared her gorgeous illustrations for the property. (Other Houston must-sees include the Thompson+Hanson retail/restaurant empire — Tiny’s Milk & Cookies was magnificent, and Courtney Barton‘s gorgeous new design shop where if you’re like me, you’ll want everything.)

Speaking of design (and Texas), I’ve never been to Austin but I wouldn’t mind visiting just to go to Hank’s Restaurant and Bar — I’d swipe a matchbook for sure, as Go Forth Creative’s branding, with illustrations by Rebecca Clarke, are brilliant.

Naturally, there are paper goods to consider. Current favorites are Kinshipped’s cleverly graphic Scandi Type cards, Parcel’s Celestial and Etherial collection (especially the foil-pressed Tiny Stars card), and also everything at Hadley Paper Goods.

I’m still missing England desperately. If I could, I’d teleport to Bruton this instant to hit every spot on the Modern House’s guide. (I’m glad they included the dovecote: I became smitten with it during our 2016 visit.) And London is never far from my thoughts. There are so many new-to-me places to visit including Spring to Go, Miel Bakery, and Pantechnicon. And of course, Petersham Nurseries. I miss it so much I am tempted to order Stone Hollow Farmstead’s rose-petal syrup so I can concoct an approximation of their rose-petal bellini while I wait.

There’s work to do at home, of course. I’m still (yes, still) chipping away at the decorating to-do list. Currently stymied by coffee table choices and general analysis paralysis. (Oh to have Rita Konig on speed dial or the budget to give Christopher Howe carte blanche.) Instead, I scroll Perrotine‘s website, filled with gorgeous hand-stitched lampshades, and study Matilda Goad‘s “Evolution of a Home” series for House & Garden (she makes it look so easy), and hope for divine inspiration.

What do you think? Now that I’ve finished, I realize it feels less like a blog post and more like a newsletter — my Instagram friend Jane Flanagan just smartly launched one and I love it! (Ann Mashburn also excels at the newsletter/blog format. If you’re not a subscriber, you’re definitely missing out.)

For the moment, my brain feels better for having put it all down. Maybe I’ll do it again soon.

* image at the top of my family room with pretty pink “think spring” quince branches and shelves that are in the process of being triaged and re-arranged, but luckily for you, I will spare you the details …