Late August: An Intermission.

By: Jen Shoop

*Image via.

These last ten days or so have hung heavy on the vine, like fruit waiting to be picked. The sojourns of summer behind us, the boxes bearing new shoes and school uniforms at our feet:

We are waiting.

I would be lying if I did not say that Mr. Magpie and I are happy for this return to routine. We talk about fall as though respite. We are creatures of habit, all four of us, but everything has run loose and unspooled these past few months: late dinners and later bedtimes, pajamas until mid-morning, bare feet, mussed hair, summer clothes that now run a tad snag and worn. We observe that the children will benefit from some separation after traipsing through the summer thick as thieves (and, therefore, prone to frequent, eruptive quarreling). We, too, could use the space.

Mary Oliver, however, presented to me the other side of this coin, reminding me to live where my feet are, offering me an invitation to reach into the fullness of this late August with hungry arms.

August by Mary Oliver

When the blackberries hang
swollen in the woods, in the brambles
nobody owns, I spend

all day among the high
branches, reaching
my ripped arms, thinking

of nothing, cramming
the black honey of summer
into my mouth; all day my body

accepts what it is. In the dark
creeks that run by there is
the thick paw of my life darting among

the black bells, the leaves; there is
the happy tongue.


+Confidence is quiet; insecurities are loud.

+Have you tried “the five second rule“?


Shopping Break.

+Another great fall coat option — love that this style can be wore belted for a little more figure-consciousness. Extra 15% off at checkout!

+Cutest little sherpa bag. Reminds me of the styles from Stand Studio, but a fraction of the price.

+Definitely going to be wearing a navy slip skirt (upgrade pick: Vince) and navy cashmere sweater this fall.

+Bought a few of these in the 4×4 size to display some of those family photos I wrote about over the weekend. I love these inexpensive frames for displaying little cards, notes, oddly-shaped photos, etc.

+Another gorgeous transition-to-fall dress. This one is in my cart.

+Just the cutest little snack plate for a little one. I also really like these inexpensive “plates” from Munchkin for snack time — they have a high “lip” that can come in handy with spill-prone littles. I also use these as trays when they’re perched on the couch (good for, say, stowing an apple mid-munch) or for corraling elements of a snack into one place (string cheese, crackers, grapes). I don’t know why – I love them! Good size.

+Speaking of snack plates, C&B has the best-sized “appetizer plates.” I have a few different sets of these that are in constant use – snacks, bread plates, spoon rests, appetizers, etc! (Also love this more handmade-looking set.). Buy in the white and they’ll work into any tablescape.

+These trousers are spectacular.

+Obsessed with my new fall labels, bag tags, and notepads from the one and only Erin Wallace.

+Love the pattern of this beautiful dress for an elegant lunch / party / celebration.

+A perfect running tee.

+I have this Mille dress in a different pattern and it is SO fun – the sleeves make it a really celebratory affair. Was thinking this would be cute for a family photo or newborn photo or maternity photo!

+Digging these coated brown crops with a chunky knit

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