From the Front Porch
Happy Thursday from the front porch sweet friends! We hope your week has been all that you’ve needed it to be as we slide into your inbox a little early to prepare for the long holiday weekend, Easter celebrations, and S’s birthday.
Thanks so much for being here!
Last Friday, I woke up to the sweetest email from my friend Cindy of Reinvented Delaware. If you don’t follow her you totally should because she is a wealth of knowledge and talent.
To my complete surprise, the email was to congratulate me on being featured in the latest edition of Country Sampler Farmhouse Style Magazine.
It was incredibly kind.
Cindy had no way of knowing it at the time, but I had been up most of the night replaying the events of the day trying to figure out how to make an endless to-do list work, while simultaneously chiding myself for not taking better care of my back or sticking to better boundaries.
It was a ridiculous and all too familiar recipe of being wired and tired.
So, when I woke up to her generous email that morning, it was like someone had opened all the windows and let in the spring air.
Truth be told, I thought the editors of the magazine had passed on my milk glass-inspired cake stand project because I had not heard from them in the way I usually do.
If you’re not familiar, magazines and publishing companies work 1-2 years (sometimes even longer) in advance planning and creating content.
Anyway, the whole experience taught me 3 important lessons…
1.) Don’t assume.
2.) Acts of kindness no matter how big or small have the power to change everything.
3.) Sometimes we have no idea things are being worked out on our behalf or in our favor, but they are. Other times, we have a direct hand in creating unexpected blessings and gifts for the people placed on our paths.
As we get ready to transition from late spring to early summer, I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to prepare your heart and home.
Inspired by Cindy’s email, I’ve also started keeping a list of unexpected blessings and gifts.
Here are just a few unexpected blessings and gifts I’ve received, someone in my family has received or a friend has recently received…
*My Mom, her brother, and sisters arrived just in time to say goodbye to a loved one.
*The irises we transplanted from my Granny’s property are blooming again.
*A friend celebrated her son’s 27th birthday this week, a true miracle, given he was in a hit and run motorcycle accident last year and left for hours without medical attention or treatment.
*Another who recently closed on a house received 2 unexpected checks in the mail after she had inadvertently overpaid in fees, insurance, and other closing-related costs.
*Another who sold her house so quickly she had not yet found a place to live. Within days she had received offers from family members, friends, and a rental property possibility owned by her realtor.
*One of my sisters runs a successful side-hustle boutique and was recently asked by an established business owner to participate in a pop-up shop-style shopping experience at her salon. Even though my sister had just met the salon owner at an unrelated event a little more than 36 hours prior, she courageously stepped into the opportunity. It was so successful we were woo hoo-ing and high fiving each other in separate cars on the phone screaming like littles because it was so exciting.
*One of my aunts called to see if there was anything she could do to help while my back was still tender and recovering. She graciously reminded me she still knew how to cook, clean, and fill ice packs like a pro. She’s almost 74 and lives over 2 hours away.
*Cardinals in bright shades of ruby have been dancing around our yard all week.
While some of the things on this list of unexpected blessings and gifts might seem small, each one is a divine reminder of the vast amount of hope and grace that surrounds us every single day.
May we always keep our hearts and minds open to receiving them.
Even when we can’t explain it.
A Few of Our Favorite Things from Around the Web This Week…
Pinning this gorgeous home (and portfolio) to my secret dream home Pinterest board, it would be so beautiful at the pecan grove.
Designer Heather Chadduck Hillegas Awakens an Ancestral Arkansas Farmhouse (and it’s every bit as dreamy as you would imagine)
Love the simple elegance of this kitchen.
Live Out Your Bridgerton Fantasies at These 5 Hotel Properties
Speaking of Bridgerton, have you seen these cookies yet? They’re almost too pretty to eat!
A Nantucket Vacation Home Built on Memories of Summers Past
This Easter Brunch Tablescape is totally fabulous!
Dying over this 15 Minute Napkin Ring idea and this twine version too!
Vintage Garden Décor and Spring Flower Shopping (this post will make you want to RUN to the garden center)
How pretty is this ring?
Grow These Cut Flowers to Have a Garden Bouquet All Summer Long
4 Things You Can Do to Fall Back in Love with Your Home
10 Things Every Adult Should Own
21 Small Habits That Will Make You Become a Happier Person
50 Thoughtful Messages for a Meaningful Thank You Note
Yes, There is an Ideal Temperature for Sleep, and Here’s Why It Matters
Think You Need to Reinvent Yourself? Listen to This (LOVED this podcast if you haven’t heard it yet)
Words to Live By…
Second Quarter Books of the Month and Devotional…
(Amazon affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. As an Amazon Associate and an Impact Media Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)
- April – The Gift of Home: Beauty and Inspiration to Make Every Space a Special Place by Bre Doucette
- May – The Power to Bless – Speaking Life into Those You Love by Alan Right
- June – Lessons from Madame Chic: 20 Stylish Secrets I Learned While Living in Paris by Jennifer L Scott
- Courageous Simplicity: Abide in the Simple Abundance of Jesus
On the Menu this Week…
Week of April 17th – April 24th
04/17 Sunday: Easter Sunday:
- Easter Recipes to Make Every Bunny Happy
- 26 of Our Best Easter Dinner Ideas
- 70 Best Easter Recipes for Planning the Perfect Sunday Feast
- 85 Easter Dinner Ideas Your Family Will Love
- 04/18 Monday: Easy Wonton Soup with Baked Egg Rolls
- 04/19 Tuesday: Queso Chicken with black beans and avocado
- 04/20 Wednesday: Smoked Salmon Avocado and Arugula Salad
- 04/21 Thursday: Rigatoni Meatball Soup
- 04/22 Friday: Chicken Mediterranean Skillet Pizza with a side salad
- 04/23 Saturday: 20 Minute Turkey Sausage & Veggie Sheet Pan Dinner
- 04/24 Sunday: Pork with Wine and Herb Gravy with mashed potatoes and asparagus
Sweet Treat to Try This Week…
Late Spring Inspired Finds We Spotted Online at Amazon and Target This Week…
(Amazon and Target affiliate links have been provided for your convenience. As an Amazon Associate and an Impact Media Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Any sales made through such links will support us with a small commission at no extra cost to you. You can read our full disclosure policy here)
Pants * Purse * Button Down * Easel Display
Ring Light * Sunscreen * Sunglasses * Headband
Boxwood * Dress * Cover-Up * Shoes
Frames * Earrings * Vitamin C Serum * Organizers
If You’ve Missed Anything from the Blog Recently or the Archives, Here’s a Peek At What We’ve Been Up To…
How to Clean Vintage Pillowcases (this method would also work for napkins)
Simple Breakfast Grazing Board
The Easiest Way to Make Moss Placemats
Last-Minute Tips and Tricks for Painting Robin Eggs
How to Decorate a Store-Bought Cake for Easter
I wasn’t able to an entire blog post about them but just a heads up, if you have a Michaels nearby, they have the cutest egg kits on sale. S painted these…
April Bucket List…
- Celebrate April Birthdays
- Order S’s Birthday Cake and Presents
- Celebrate Easter at Bliss Barracks
- Make Easter Basket for Piper
- Meet S for Dinner to Celebrate the End of Tax Season
- Meet Accountability Partner for Lunch and J Crew
- Continue Quarter Challenge in Q2
- Establish Exercise Plan to Strengthen Core
- Begin the Miracle Month with Carrie Green
- Take Part in Jon Acuff’s Overcoming Overthinking Challenge
- Organize and Finish the Laundry Room Makeover
- Begin Morning Pages
- Read the Book of the Month
- Begin Q2 Devotion
- Keep Sundays Sacred
April Simplified and Organized Home Challenge…
Focus of the Month: Shared and Common Areas
- 04/02 – Linen Closets
- 04/09 – Laundry Room
- 04/16 – Entry or Mudroom
- 04/23 – Dining Room & Dining Room Hutch/Buffet
- 04/30 – Declutter & Organize Living Room
TCG Housekeeping Notes, Dates to Remember, and Upcoming Posts…
- 04/15 – Good Friday
- 04/17 – Easter Sunday
- 04/18 – Tax Day (US)
- 04/22 – Earth Day
As always, we appreciate you more than you could ever know. We hope your Easter weekend is filled with lots of love and laughter. We’ll be taking off tomorrow to celebrate S’s birthday and spending time with our family at Bliss Barracks this weekend but look forward to sharing more with you next week!
Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.
CoCo so many things I love about this post.
First sorry your back still hurts. Congratulations on the feature so well deserved.
Sorry about the loss of a loved one but happy they made it to say goodbye.
I love the story about aunt reminding you she can still cook. And she’s 74 and lives 2 hours away abd loves you so much.
I hope you have a very Happy Easter!
Thank you for your kind words, Cindy! I really appreciate them. I can’t believe my back is still tender either but they said 4-6 weeks so I’m going to keep believing it will be back to normal soon. Every day I make a little progress which gives me hope. I’m also happy my mom and her siblings made it in time to say goodbye, it was such a gift for all of them. My aunts are all really special. She actually helped raise us while my Dad was away so we have such a sweet relationship with her. She had me laughing out loud telling me all the things she could still do and not to count her out at 74. Her fiesty spirit is one of my favorite things about her! Thank you for your good wishes on the magazine feature too. I never in a million years thought I would be blogging full time much less featured in a magazine. Life has such an interesting way of working out sometimes. Sending you lots of hugs for a happy spring and Easter weekend, CoCo
I forgot thanks for featuring my napkin and rings
Hello Coco, another wonderful post I really don’t know how you do it, honestly, each and every week, your amazing.
I hope your looking after your back, along with the rest of you of course, you know, everything else will still be there once your well enough to cope better…. Oh and a BIG congrats on being in the magazine, we don’t get it here but it looks amazing.
Have a blessed Easter, I am busy trying to prepare for the little ones, they get so excited and it makes me feel young again haha.
Take care lovely lady.xxx
I really appreciate it, Janette, thank you so much for all your kind and thoughtful words. My back is getting there – little by little – each day I’m making progress which feels exciting. I hope your back is on the mend as well. I swear it is such a painful experience! I hope you and your family have a blessed Easter weekend. It’s always fun to hear them get a thrill over everything from the lilies at church to the egg hunt and of course the visit from the Easter Bunny too. Last year we hosted a “grandparents egg hunt” and the littles still talk about MiMi and Popi looking for eggs in the front yard with their baskets 🤣 Wishing you lots of love and laughter at your celebration too, CoCo
I hope you have the best Easter Weekend. You are such an inspiration and I appreciate your support so much. Thanks for sharing my post again. You are the best.
You are so welcome, I appreciate all of your love and support as well. I swear if we lived a little closer we could be crafting, diy-ing, and shopping up a storm! I hope you and your family have a fabulous Easter weekend, CoCo
Hi CoCo! Congrats on your magazine feature! I’ll check our local stores to buy it. Isn’t that the best when you get a surprise like that? Earlier this week a kind man let me go ahead of him at Starbucks. It meant a ton. Speaking if kind gestures, thank you so much for including the bunny napkin rings 🐇 Hope you have a Happy Easter!
Thank you so much, Marie! I don’t usually like surprises but I have to say that was definitely a good one. I’m so thankful you also had an unexpected gift and blessing happen this week at Starbucks. I’m telling you the little things are the big things 🙌 LOVED your bunny napkin rings like crazy. They’re super creative just like you! Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy Easter, CoCo
First, congratulations on the magazine feature! I received mine but haven’t had the chance to open it yet. I’m looking forward to seeing the photos even though I already know exactly what I’ll see. Second, you are so right about unexpected blessings, gifts and each one being a divine reminder of the vast amount of hope and grace that surrounds us every single day. Third, I wish I would have started a book with all of the sweet words I read in your posts. I wish we lived close to each other because I want to help you with all that you need just so I could feel your joy. Actually, it would be more of a blessing to me! Fourth, I can’t even with those houses. Goodness gracious so many beautiful places. Can you imagine being surrounded in so many trees and having such a pond to look at while sitting on that beautiful porch?! Last but not least, after reading Jaquelyn’s post, I’m going to get rid of everything that doesn’t bring joy. Starting with the ridiculous cabinet of plastic containers in the kitchen. p.s. Thank you for the prayers for Will. It truly is a miracle to us. Blessings and Happy Easter!
You are the sweetest, Cindy! I’m totally on board with it all. You can give me 1-4 any day of the week 🙌 Can you even with those houses? It’s so exciting to see how they kept that house intact. I mean, talk about talent. It totally blew my mind! Loved Jacquelyn’s recommendations too. It seems like everyone is moving and getting to start over and so I definitely need to bookmark that post so I can fall in love with this place all over again. So excited for Will’s birthday and all the hard work he’s put into this recovery. I know it hasn’t been easy but He has been faithful every step of the way. What a miracle! Big hugs and happy Easter, CoCo
Hello! Thank you for sharing such a heartfelt post! I loved reading about all of the blessings and gifts you, and those you love, have received! A huge congratulations on the magazine! That is such amazing news! I’m so happy for you and I’m going to look for it when I run errands later today! Take care of yourself! Sending prayers for healing in your back! Hope you and all of your family have a blessed Easter weekend! Donna
Thank you so much, Donna! I always think I will remember all the good stuff that happens but then I totally get busy and forget! While it’s not always rainbows and roses over here keeping a record of the unexpected gifts and blessings has helped when the hard days get really hard. I hope I can keep it up all year. Sending you and your family tons of hugs for a happy and healthy Easter weekend, CoCo
I appreciate this heartfelt post because it underscores that we can choose to look for the light in a world that can be dark. If we pay attention – we really can notice all the miracles and amazing things that surround us every day. Thank you for that reminder.
Also CONGRATULATIONS on being featured in a magazine Coco. You absolutely deserve it . Wishing you and your family a lovely Easter.
Such sweet and thoughtful words, Anna, thank you so much. I really appreciate them! While most days I try to stay positive and above the fray, it’s definitely easy to get caught up in the noise and busyness of life. I always think I’m going to remember the good stuff and I do for a while. But taking the time to write the good things down has helped so much! Especially, on the days when things feel crazy and chaotic. Hope your day is filled with all good things, CoCo
Another heartfelt post. I hope you know how much I love reading From the Front Porch each week CoCo. Congratulations on your magazine feature. I’m so happy for you. Thank you for sharing my vintage garden post, my sweet friend. Happy Easter.
You are so sweet to say that, Kim, thank you! My Mom recently asked if I could send her an encouragement of the week post complete with a video which gave me the giggles. It helps me to know I’m not alone in dealing with certain struggles and I know it helps others too. Just to feel seen nowadays in a noisy world feels like a huge gift. Sending you big hugs and thank yous for all your kind support, CoCo
These type of posts always leave me in awe!! You pack so much in a single post that I have to keep going back just to take it all in…Congrats on the magazine issue!!! How exciting!! Loved all the things to be grateful for…Truly a lesson in finding all the good around us!!! Great post!! Thanks so much for stopping by!! I hope you and your family had a lovely Easter!!
I appreciate your thoughtful words so much, Deb, thank you! These Friday posts are always so much fun to put together. Hope your week has been filled with all good things. I cannot believe we’re almost to May and Mother’s Day. Big hugs, CoCo