From the Front Porch

Happy Friday from the front porch, you guys!

We hope January has been good to you so far and you’re ready to welcome all the good things February has in store.

Encouragement of the Month…

This month has been an interesting one, hasn’t it?

Part of me feels like it’s the 60th day of December today.

I had high hopes January would offer a fresh start.

But as I’ve floated through the month, mostly in a fog desperately trying to catch up, I realize now I gave away so much time during the holidays that what I needed more than a fresh start, was rest.

Earlier this week, I was starting to get frustrated at all the things left on my January to-do list. Then I remembered a grace-filled event that helped me turn things around.

If January hasn’t lived up to your expectations, I’m hoping it will help you too.

Several years ago, my Mom, a few friends, and family members, and I all ran a half marathon. 

It blows my mind I ran 13.1 miles now but back then it was a major life goal, and I was eager for the challenge.

After almost a year of training the big day came and the excitement in the air that weekend was palpable.

Two miles from the finish line my Mom tweaked her back and could no longer run.

Determined to finish the race, she told our friends and family members to go ahead without her.

My sister and I looked at each other, and at that moment, we quietly committed to walking beside our Mom the rest of the way.  

Those last 2 miles for my Mom were a mix of disappointment and pain.

But for my sister and me, those last 2 miles were a chance to support someone we loved.

Slowing our pace down allowed us to enjoy the many festive balloon arches, the thousands of people lining the racecourse cheering us on, the symphony of loud music and cowbells and shouts of “You can do it!” the sweet taste of chilled orange Gatorade, and the clear blue sky that welcomed the three of us to the finish line as we lifted our clasped hands together in the air.

While our finish time was nothing like we had expected, we still talk about those last 2 miles and the gentle blessings we would have missed had we forced ourselves to finish the race injured and weary.

As we look back on January, my hope is we’ll be able to leave the things that didn’t work out as planned behind.

And walk boldly into February holding onto those things that brought us genuine love and joy.  

A Few of Our Favorite Posts from Around the Web this Week…

A beautiful coastal classic home tour filled with blues and whites.

If blacks and whites are more you’re speed though, you’ll love this moody home tour.

Speaking of white, The White Company’s founder Chrissie Rucker’s home is just as dreamy as you would imagine it would be.

Have you seen Bria Hammel’s latest project yet? I swear she needs a book deal already ?

This historic country house is filled with gorgeous neutrals and layers of texture.

These Are the Top 10 Predictions for 2021 Outdoor Living Trends, According to Design Experts 

Such a pretty way to celebrate Galentine’s Day 

How to Thrive Based on Your Enneagram 

How to Eat Healthier Without Going on a Diet 

7 Questions to Ask When Cleaning Out Your Closet 

30 Black-Owned Handbag Brands to Carry You Through 2021 and Beyond 

50 Things You Can Throw Out 

50 Things You Can Do to Be Healthier & Happier in 2021 

Words to Live By…

Listening to This Week…

Time to Get Off the Sidelines and Get In the Game via the She Means Busines Show.

Watching This Week…

I loved the way the Headspace Guide to Meditation on Netflix broke meditation down into such a simple way.  We’ve been doing an episode each night and I’m so excited to continue into February as well.

Wearing This Month…

February Book of the Month…

**(Amazon Affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost for you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)

Dirt: Growing Strong Roots in What Makes the Broken Beautiful by Mary Marantz

On the Menu This Week…

02/01 – Monday: Maple Mustard Salmon Sheet Pan Dinner 

02/02 – Tuesday: Easy Chicken and Black Bean Burritos 

02/03 – Wednesday: Super Food Detox Salad 

02/04 – Thursday: Weight Watchers Slow Cooker Stuffed Pepper Soup 

02/05 – Friday: Quick and Easy Breakfast Bake Ideas 

02/06 – Saturday:  15 Minute Sesame Steak Stir Fry  

02/07 – Sunday: Super Bowl Sunday – 90 Super Bowl Sunday Recipes to Satisfy Your Hungry Guests 

Sweet Treat to Try This Week…

37 Desserts to Make Super Bowl Sunday Sweet  

January Favorite Things ….

**(Amazon and Target Affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost for you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)

Striped Sheet SetGlamorous WashBeautifully Organized 

HuggarooIn-Drawer Knife BlockGenerous Bowls

Personalized TumblerRechargeable LighterStuds 

Super Soft SweatshirtNail PolishSweater 

If You’ve Missed Anything from the Blog or the Archives Lately, Here’s a Peek at What We’ve Been Up To…

5 Tips for Organizing a Small Pantry 

How to Make a Simple Valentine Gift Container 

Quick & Easy Valentine’s Day Snack Box 

Vintage Valentine’s Tablescape and Blog Hop 

February Bucket List…

  • Wake up at the same time each morning
  • Journal before work
  • Walk or bike 45 mins each day
  • Mg supplement and stretching before bed
  • Order and deliver Valentine’s Day goodies
  • Reclaim afternoon teatime
  • Learn new camera
  • Plan Spring home décor and porch projects
  • Buy a cooling mattress pad
  • Read the Book of the Month
  • Watch Season 2 of Dream Home Makeover on Netflix
  • Sunday Suppers by candlelight
  • Keep Sundays Sacred

Simplified & Organized Home Focus This Month

Cleaning Schedule, Self-Care, and Healthy Routines

  • 01/30 Clean Out/Organize Refrigerator & Freezer
  • 02/06 Establish Morning Routine & Workout Routine
  • 02/13 Establish Nightly Routine with 15 Minute Clutter Catcher
  • 02/20 Continue/Tweak Cleaning Schedule
  • 02/27 Declutter & Refresh Breakfast Nook

TCG Housekeeping Notes, Dates to Remember & Upcoming Posts…

  • 01/31 – National Hot Chocolate Day
  • 02/01 – Buy Birthday, Valentine’s Day & Special Occasion Cards & Gifts
  • 02/02 – Confirm Valentines or Galentine’s Day Plans
  • 02/07 – Super Bowl Sunday
  • 02/09 – National Pizza Day
  • 02/12 – Chinese New Year (Year of the Ox)
  • 02/13 – Galentine’s Day
  • 02/14 – Valentine’s Day
  • 02/15 – President’s Day (US)
  • 02/16 – Fat Tuesday
  • 02/17 – Ash Wednesday

That’s all for now!

As always, we appreciate you so much and we hope your weekend is peace-filled and relaxing.  We can’t wait to share even more with you next week!

Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Many blessings,


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  1. Your mom is truly so lucky to have such amazing daughters!! January has definitely been an eye opener for sure!! On to February! Hopefully it holds many blessings for you and yours!!

    1. Thank you so much, Christine! It’s only the second day of February and things are going much better which feels like a huge blessing. I think sometimes it just takes giving yourself permission to walk away and refocus 🙂 As far as my Mom goes, she definitely a great lady. We totally hit the love lotto with her 🙂 Big hugs for a happy week, CoCo

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