Friday, 18 November 2016

November Favourites // Little Loves

In this season of social media silence, I have revelled in appreciating the artistic gifts and creativity of others... it was only a couple of weeks ago that I stumbled across this quote below and it really struck a chord with me...


I stuck it on our blackboard straight away, and there it still remains. A daily reminder.

There is something so refreshingly satisfying about recognising beauty around us, for no other purpose than savouring the beauty of the thing, admiring the skill of the artist and giving glory to THE creator who gave the gift in the first place. I am always on the look out for new musical artists, great reads and thought-provoking creativity... and so on that note, after a long time away, I thought it was about time I returned to little loves and shared some of the things I've been enjoying listening to, reading, watching and appreciating... I love a little recommendation from others, and so I thought I'd share in case any of you wanted some new creatives to follow and watch.

And as I said, if there's anyone I'm missing out on, go ahead and let me discover them by leaving a comment below!

Our November Favourites...

Read // Getting lost in those pages...

Reading feels like a bit of a long lost love at the moment... my very favourite hobby, and yet one I seem to have far too little time for these days. And yet, we have at least managed to instill daily read aloud time with our little people, and it is one of my favourite times of day. Little girls, cosy in their jammies, tucked up in bed, staring at the ceiling and taking in words from my own childhood. We have been revelling in the delights of the effervescent Pollyanna (by Eleanor H. Porter) over the last few weeks, playing her infamous "glad game" and really truly learning what it means to be thankful in every circumstance. I love exposing the children to rich, wholesome children's literature... there are so many life lessons to be learnt from heartwarming characters like Pollyanna Whittier (click on the picture for more info!)

For myself, I have been pouring over the pages of an old classic "The Home Beautiful" by J.R.Miller with highlighter in hand... there is SO MUCH wisdom in these pages. It was first printed in 1912 and is just timeless on issues of marriage and parenting and home life and cultivating sibling relationships... ah... I can't recommend it highly enough. There is so much goodness in it, that I'm needing to take my time. Reading a chapter, pondering and chewing it over for a week or so, and then reading some more. But its one of those books I feel is sharpening me, and challenging me and making me think more about being purposeful about those key relationships in my life... and that's always a good thing. (Click on the picture for more info...)

In the blogging world, for sharpening, thought-provoking, quality writing, no-one comes close to Bethany Douglass for me at the moment. Her blog, Cloistered Away, is a little online haven and you just want to go and glean wisdom and I always leave feeling refreshed. If you haven't ever been there, do it! I promise you'll get as inspired by Bethany's thoughtful, purposeful style just as I have!

And in term's of reading of the best kind, I have been wallowing in the lengthy delights of Psalm 119 for the past 3 weeks (yes... it ACTUALLY is that long!) and I'm still not finished! I've been using Tim Keller's fantastic devotional "My Rock, My Refuge" to help direct my thoughts, but genuinely... this one Psalm just has SO much to chew over. Inspiring, helpful stuff that is rooting me firm in Scripture amidst some pretty chaotic going's on around here at the moment. Its loooong (176 verses long!) but each verse is full of treasure to be unearthed!

Watched // Admiring a fine picture...

There are so many angles on this "watched" category, and rather than taking one, I'm going for all of them... but I think it'll be worth it, so stay tuned!! My eyes see so many images over the course of a day - photographs, film, illustration and real life! So here goes...

Instagram - Is still and I think will always be my favourite little online community... its lovely to find kindred spirits all over the world, and the lovely Sarah over at @timeourjoy has become one of those for me. Her Instagram account is utterly gorgeous and well worth a follow if you want beautiful images, seeing the beauty in life's little moments, but also a healthy dose of reality. And she's just such a lovely person to boot!

TV - The incredible Netflix drama "The Crown" absolutely steals this month for me. I've always been a royalist, and never have been quiet about that fact, but boy, it's given me a whole new respect for our Queen. She's lived a pretty eventful life, and yet has remained firm and steadfast throughout (a quality she famously attributes to her faith in the Lord Jesus). So inspiring... and I'm a sucker for a bit of historical drama!

- Art - Literally, nothing comes CLOSE at the moment to the illustrations in the D'Aulaire books. I've been reading "Leif the Lucky" with the children, and I actually want to wallow on each page... so incredibly beautiful. If you haven't read any of the D'Aulaire's books with your children, you MUST invest. Seriously! They are a little on the pricey side, but worth every. single. penny.

- Real Life - the biggest delight has been seeing the hugest grins on our Jonas' face as he has begun to take off on his own. He's still wobbly and has that definite toddler toddle, but its delightful just to sit and watch him take so much pride in his newfound freedom! First steps... so precious!

Made // Creative hands...

I have started dabbling in crafting Christmas decorations already (yes... I know its still November), but we've been preparing for our women's Christmas Craft Night up at Church and so I can't give too much away just yet... but I'm excited... this year's crafts are all super cute and made from reusable and natural materials.  I will share once I can!

I've also been making up lots of oil blend concoctions to diffuse around the house. I found, over the summer, that having some essential oils diffusing just added a sense of calm and serenity to our home that is sometimes lacking when you have three under five! As soon as the morning sickness hit though, I had to bury them... I couldn't bear the smell of anything at all... but this week, I've whipped them out again and been diffusing lavender and eucalyptus to my hearts content. I have a post in the pipeline about some of my favourite oils... and a little bit about the health journey we've been on, but finding time to write is proving difficult these days! Watch this space!

Wore // No longer hiding...

Something other than my green jumper. Seriously, it was the only thing that even remotely hid my ever growing bump, but after three weeks of wearing it, washing it, wearing it, washing it on repeat, I was glad to be able to show the bump off to the world and not feel the need to keep it under wraps any more!

Such a relief!

Heard // A little music...
Click for the links... all absolutely fantastic and pretty much forming the soundtrack to my life at the moment!

- Sovereign Grace Music Acoustic Sessions

- Lauren Daigle

- The Overscheduled Life - AtHome06
^^^ SO helpful and thought provoking! Now just to put some things into action!

Oops...that was mammoth... I guess that's what happens when you go silent on the social media front for a while! But seriously, that's been our November.... now I would LOVE some recommendations for things to read, listen to and watch as we gear up for the advent season... the season of waiting and expectation and excitement!

I hope you find some gems to love for yourself in the above!

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  1. I'm excited to see more of your Christmas crafts. Oh first steps are so exciting! Have a lovely week #LittleLoves

    1. Eek! Yes, hopefully I'll get some Christmas Crafts up next week! Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Wow! What a bumper issue of Little Loves! I love the idea of making oil blends.. you bump looks gorgoues. Must check out The Crown!

    1. Lol... Yes! It is a bit of a bumper issue, isn't it?! Oops! The Crown is def worth checking out! Enjoy!

  3. Congratulations on your exciting news, how lovely! I have blackboard envy, yours is lovely. We bought a cheap one from eBay last year and it is terrible, you can barely write on it. Should have know better. xx

  4. Lauren Daigle has been a favourite of mine for ages - love the whole album but this song in particular is one I've shared a few times. Every word is like gold dust isn't it? It was the soundtrack to my life for a good while this year. I like the look of Timothy Keller's devotional - he's a great source of wisdom isn't he? Haven't tried The Crown yet but so many people have recommended it so I of course will be sometime soon. Glad to see you back at Little Loves as I've just started joining in weekly! x

  5. Congratulations on your baby news! I love the idea of essential oil blends, I'm sure they would be a great way to relax of an evening. Enjoy your weekend xx

  6. Love the oil blends. I'm hoping to find time for some chrstmas crafts too. Love watching little ones take their first steps.

  7. It was mammoth but also excellent, so many fab recommendations there. If you like a bit of modern county music, I am loving Ward Thomas at the moment -

    Mich x

  8. That quote is perfect and one I thoroughly agree with. I'm not sure whether I've said 'congratulations'. I meant to but can't remember if I did. Anyway, huge congratulations on such lovely news xxx


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