What I’m Loving Right Now

Hello all. It’s been a while since I’ve written anything here but I know you’ll understand when I tell you that on October 1 we had my daughter’s wonderful (twice delayed due to COVID) wedding and three weeks later we lost my dad. It’s been the busiest time, filled with both great happiness and great sadness, which I’m learning is the nature of life.

Lindsey and Morgan’s formal wedding photos just came back and we’re having such fun going through them, but one of my favorite photos was taken by our wedding coordinator right as Lindsey and Tom were about to walk down the aisle.

I have it framed on the chest in our entryway with the rest of my favorite family pics.

Here are some other things I’m loving right now.

Note: This post contains Amazon affiliate links, which means if you click on a link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. More details are here if you’re interested.

My small book group recently read Ann Patchett’s The Dutch House and it generated so much discussion that we’ve considered getting together a second time to keep talking about it. If you’re an audiobook listener, the audio version of The Dutch House is narrated by Tom Hanks, and I’ve heard it’s terrific. Nothing I read by Ann ever disappoints. I’ve asked for her new book of essays for Christmas.

I knew these ramekins would be good for all kinds of entertaining purposes, but what we’re using them for mostly is snacking. They’re the perfect size for single servings of dips, nuts, chips, etc.

Although I always have my toes painted (usually in OPI’s Cajun Shrimp) I rarely paint my fingernails and when I do I’m often running out of the house on my way somewhere. These OPI drying drops work well and (mostly) keep me from making a mess of my freshly painted nails.

My friend Vicki has an amazing shoe collection and when she was giving me a tour of her new home I took special note of how her shoes were organized in her closet. She uses these stackable shoe organizers and, despite the fact that my shoe collection is much less impressive (it’s really not a collection at all), I ordered a set right away. I recently put them together and discovered that twelve was not enough so I ordered a second set and put them in stacks of four on a shelf in my closet. Tom calls them my “shoe garages” and I love them so much that I made Lindsey and Morgan come into my closet to look at them when there were here on Sunday.

Speaking of Lindsey and Morgan, they made steaks for Tom’s birthday and they served this Pioneer Woman Twice Baked Potato Casserole with them. It’s maybe the best potato dish I’ve ever eaten.

Right before Thanksgiving, I re-ordered these take-out boxes, which I always keep on hand for sending leftovers home with family and friends after dinners or parties. Having them stacked in my pantry makes things easy for me, and no one has to worry about returning anything.

Finally, Brian Branton’s Instagram account is always a treat, but never more than at Christmas.

P.S. My favorite books of 2020 and a Christmas table setting by the numbers.

Never miss a post! Sign up to receive Creating This Life posts by email.

* indicates required

Intuit Mailchimp


  1. Hi Julie!
    I was so excited to see this pop up in my email! Congrats on your daughter’s wedding! She was a beautiful bride! 🙂

    I’m so sorry to hear about your Dad. It’s hard to mix the two, but hopefully, your father didn’t suffer. I just visited my parents last weekend. It’s heartbreaking to see my 89-year-old Mom try and deal with my father’s dementia. We are waiting on different nursing homes to get back to us, but it’s been a process.

    All is good on this end, I’ve given up on blogging for the most part, although I may come out with something down the road. I’ll keep ya posted. 🙂

    Merry Christmas and I wish you a healthy, prosperous new year!

    Regards, Sharon

    1. Sharon, it’s so nice to hear from you! I’m so sorry for your mom and dad, and for you. It’s so hard to watch them struggle. I’m glad everything is going well otherwise. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you!!

  2. Julie, it’s good to hear from you! What a roller coaster of emotions you’ve been through in these past few months. I am sorry for your loss, and I hope his memory remains vivid many years to come. So close to the holidays will undoubtedly be raw, but hopefully the joy of the recent marriage will makes things seem brighter.
    Love coral, and those shoe garages are awesome. I’ve actually been thinking about buying some of those to store my napkins (!). I saw something similar on a blog that I cannot remember who to give credit to, but having just moved (three homes in three years!), I am on an organizing frenzy.
    Wishing you peace this Christmas season.

    1. Rita, I’m so curious about using the shoe organizers to store napkins. I would have never thought of that! You’ll have to let me know how it goes. I hope you have a lovely Christmas. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.