Making Our Hearts a Bethlehem: Seeing Small

This morning on this second Sunday of Advent, my heart has turned to the meaningfulness of small, seemingly less significant movements of Divinity in daily life.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
A gorgeous green country cabinet at Trove – see a shop tour HERE.

Making Our Hearts a Bethlehem: Seeing Small

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
A darling kitchen at Urban Farmgirl.

How often do I look for dramatic sweeping gestures from the Grand Mystery or feel disappointment and resentment when they are in short supply or when heartbreak comes to my world?

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
I’m seeing olive buckets everywhere again this season!

Over the years, I have come to see that the kingdom of God–this realm of trans-rational peace and flowing love–is an upside down one, nothing like the culture in which I live.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
A bedroom vignette at Urban Farmgirl.

As a result, it’s the quiet, feathery delicate, wispy movements where I may glimpse the Truth and know the Loving Presence.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
Whimsical, American farmhouse holiday cheer.

It’s the small miracles–these windows through which we somehow catch a hint of the perfect character and mercy of God–which shimmer with glory in an upside down kingdom.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

As I mentioned in a prior post, I am following a Henri Nouwen Advent book discussion, and the author says this about seeing the small:

“When I have no eyes for the small signs of God’s presence – the smile of a baby, the carefree play of children, the words of encouragement and gestures of love offered by friends – I will always remain tempted to despair.”

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

How do our eyes become the sort of eyes that recognize such signs?

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

Oh, friends. It is never a one and done eye job, is it?.

My whole life in God is about surrender and seeking: new vision, Grace, and purity of heart.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
A tree dedicated to dogs just may catch on…

What a blessing there are so many paths leading us to new sight.

Suffering, for one. Love affairs. Parenthood. Illness. Animals. Art and music.

Indeed, all paths are fair game!

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

For me personally, it is necessary on an ongoing basis to keep getting out of the way, allowing reality to be reality, and letting go for my blindness to be healed.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

Daily transformation, the scriptures, meditation, solitude, spiritual study, and loving relationships shape my lens to see.

When despair comes, my vision may be distorted, and it can be difficult to maintain focus. I want things back to how they were or at least more orderly.

But it requires brand new spectacles to see beyond those Hollywood sized spectacles, so foreign in the Loveliness of the Heavenly Small!

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

My healing over the years has come RIGHT WHERE I AM in the everyday smallness of my sacred daily existence.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

This morning, half awake, I watched two newly born squirrels play chase on the wintry bare branches of a walnut tree near our bedroom window.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

This moment–a mere blip on a universal radar–pierced my heart, injecting it with lifegiving joy and recognition.

Last night, as I sat at the piano writing a chorus for a song, a chord progression unexpectedly added a layer of rich soul I did not see coming.

A layer that in fact, undid me.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

The veil grows thinner. The notes grow sweeter. The heart grows softer. The lens grows clearer.

A quantum squirrel chase on a December morn becomes infinitely charged with salvation…which is for me synonymous with healing.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

How I welcome healing when it arrives!

Healing for daily woundedness which goes along with living in a world honoring the BIG. Healing for the nearsighted ways I see my life, my relationships, and my blessings.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle
It is up there on my list for sure!

On this second Sunday of Advent, I think of the Light of the World whose birthday we honor with such over the top grandeur.

I think of this little human who breathed his first breath in a stable in the small village of Bethlehem.

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

Micah 5:2–5 (NLT)
“But you, O Bethlehem Ephrathah, are only a small village among all the people of Judah. Yet a ruler of Israel will come from you, one whose origins are from the distant past … And he will stand to lead his flock with the LORD’s strength, in the majesty of the name of the LORD his God. Then his people will live there undisturbed, for he will be highly honored around the world. And he will be the source of peace.”

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

The source of peace. I think about how this Jewish rabbi’s ministry developed as he met people (rich, poor, deeply flawed, faithful) right where they were and shared seemingly insignificant encounters with them like fishing, drinking wine at weddings, or breaking bread together.

Did you know BETHLEHEM means “house of bread” in Hebrew?

What could be more common, accessible, golden, and SMALL yet SIGNIFICANT than bread? 

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

To make my heart a Bethlehem, I must make room for faith to see the beauty of God shining in the naked smallness of the here and now.

It is a beauty which illumines the path to a trustworthy, sustaining love and holds all that I need to flourish peacefully.

I am sealing all of these imperfect expressions with perfect peace and a prayer that light will find you.

Harmonious & Uplifting

Lyrics to Hallelujah (Light Has Come) by Barlow Girl

My Baby
Heaven sent you to me
All the worlds been praying
Who will Save?
But who am I
That here tonight
I hold the one
Who’ll Bring us life
Hallelujah,
We’ve been found
A child is born
To save us now
Hallelujah light has come
A Savior who will set us free
A Promise for those who believe
Do you hear the Angels
Sing for you my baby
Men and kings have come to
Bow to you
But here in my arms
So close to me
The son of God
Now all can see
Hallelujah We’ve been found
A child is born to save us now
Jesus Hallelujah light has come
A savior set us free
So praise to God on high
He has heard our cry

Farmhouse Christmas decor inspiration, vintage style, and rustic country decorating ideas for a whimsical holiday interior. #hellolovelystudio #christmasdecor #farmhousestyle

Make sure to visit THIS STORY with gorgeous vintage Christmas decorating inspiration and more American farmhouse Christmas lovely await RIGHT HERE. 

Also, see the first installment of Making Our Hearts a Bethlehem HERE.

When I spied a few of the slashed prices on a few beautiful Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture pieces online, they were too enticing not to share. I have gathered a collection of awesomely priced furniture finds I thought you design savvy bargain shoppers might particularly whistle at. The furniture and decor pieces fall under the category of traditional design style while they also reflect a casual, unfussy, neutral mood.

My French Nordic cottage style bedroom. Hello Lovely Studio. Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture. #furniture #cottagestyle #coastalstyle #interiordesign
Hello Lovely Studio. My French Nordic cottage style bedroom with panel bed. Lamp: Parisian Iron Gate Lamp, RH. Similar French linen slipcovered chair: RIGHT HERE. Shop my home HERE. One wall is covered with reclaimed painted pine from Stikwood…read about the project RIGHT HERE. Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

This post contains affiliate links which I hope you will use since they won’t cost you a penny extra yet may earn this blog a small commission.

Colette Dining Chairs, Set of 2
French Linen Slipcovered Chair, Set of 2
Gold Milagro Heart
French Basket
Courtney Lamp Base
Gold Starburst Mirror
Tuscan Terracotta Urn Vase
Gold Sacred Milagro Hearts
Flameless Candles & Remote
Antiqued Brass Candlesticks
Natural Linen Napkins
Round Bronze Accent Table
French Country Lamp
White Ruffle Spread + Shams
French Laundry Basket
Metal Martini Table
Distressed White French Country Chandelier
Farmhouse Dining Table
French Country Headboard
Oval Back Counter Stool, Set of 2
Turkish Cotton Blanket
Linen & Burlap Tufted Ottoman
Gertrude Wood Bench
Weathered 4-Door French Cabinet – 71″
Upholstered Dining Chair Set
White Ruffle Quilt Set
French Louis Style Arm Chair
Avignon Coat Rack With Hooks
Round Farmhouse Dining Table
Linen Slipcovered Dining Chair, Set of 2
Louis Upholstered Bench
Pamela Arm Chair
Sweater Weave Basket
Rustic Wood Candleholders
Aged Terracotta Pots
French Country Wood Chandelier
French Linen Dining Chair
Galvanized Console Table
French Farmhouse Dining Table
Bar Stool
Beachy White Slipcovered Sofa
Rattan Armchair
Diptyque Oyedo Candle
Cross Back Dining Chair
French Country Candle Holder
French Industrial Metal Cafe Chair (Set of 2)
Designer Favorite Wall Mirror
White Farmhouse Lantern Pendant Light
French Country 6-Light Chandelier
French Country Loveseat
French Country Upholstered Arm Chair
Faux Bois Candleholders
French Ticking Stripe Pillow
Jute Area Rug
French Candle Style Chandelier
Reclaimed Wood 3 Leg Stool
Belgian Linen Sofa
Rustic Wood Candlestick Set
French Market Basket
Linen Modern Wing Chair
French Country Farmhouse Baskets
Magnus Table Lamp
Spindle Leg Upholstered Bench
Belgian Style Lamp
Modern Farmhouse Lamp
White Slipcovered Sofa
Scrubbed Wood 5-Light Chandelier
Arched Champagne Wall Mirror
Moravian Star 1-Light Pendant
Highback Armchair
Mini Pendant Light
White Vase Set
Round Woven Placemat Set
Fireclay Farm Sink (Reinhard, 30″)
Matelasse Coverlet
Quilted Coverlet
Boheme Madera Bench
Belgian Linen Duvet Set
Round Marble Side Table
Rustic Pedestal Farm Table
Teak Farmhouse Stool

Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture

Should you not be in the market for any of these traditional pieces, join me at the finish line for something special…a different flavor of CLASSIC… very special musical artist whom I idolized as a young girl talks about no longer performing.

One of My Favorite White Slipcovered Sofas of All Time!

For starters, I noticed one of my favorite sofas (a white slipcovered beauty) went on sale. FYI, this particular sofa goes out of stock regularly.

Fairchild Slipcovered Sofa
Fairchild Slipcovered White Sofa.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

This Fairchild sofa is the very same one designer Sarah Richardson chose for her rustic media room in her family’s own home in Ontario.

Sarah Richardson's media room in her off the grid farmhouse. White slipcovered sofa and blue accents with rustic decor. Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.
Sarah Richardson’s own media room in her off the grid Ontario farmhouse. Design: Sarah Richardson. Photo: Stacey Brandford, HGTV Canada.

The sofa easily works with rustic decor as well as with more elegant pieces in a French country style space:

Is This the Wood Side Table You’ve Been Searching For?

I love the traditional coastal vibe of this sculptural pedestal side table made of solid teak which at only 24″ in diameter will work in small spaces and blend with any number of traditional styles! Teak is so pricey, and if you’re lucky enough to snag this baby when it’s on sale…VICTORY BARGAIN DANCE TIME!

Ignazio Pedestal Table
Ignazio Pedestal Table.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

The table comes in additional finishes as well like grey.

Ignazio Pedestal Table
Sculptural Ignazio Pedestal Side Table.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

Entry, Mud Room, or Anywhere Storage That Only Looks Custom

If you have ever sought a bid for custom built-ins from a carpenter, then you know how expensive any sort of storage unit for books, backpacks, or display can be. Here’s a ready-made option that adds architectural interest and character even as it helps to stow everyday essentials.

Gerwalta Storage Hall Tree
White Wood Hall Tree Storage Unit With Hooks.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

A Smart Wall Sconce for Under $40

It’s so interesting to me that frequently I am searching for a fixture which has simple clean lines and a straightforward design, and it’s nowhere to be found in a sea of overly ornate or complicated designs. Here’s an exception.

Here you can see the sconce inverted for a different look:

Jaylene 1-Light Armed Sconce
Oil Rubbed Bronze Wall Sconce

The sconce’s style is versatile enough to go in any number of spaces like an entry:

Bedroom Furniture Ideas to Inspire

I thought the lines on this upholstered panel bed were graceful and pretty enough to work in a number of bedrooms whether its French country, Belgian, or French Nordic style that rocks your world.

Sten Upholstered Panel Bed
Upholstered Panel Bed.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

A timeless quilt like this won’t ever fall from favor!

Distressed Washed Oak Finish!

Thank goodness we are beginning to see more of the more natural, scrubbed raw wood look that works so well with more rustically inclined designs and spaces. Here’s an unfussy console table with an attractive metal base that could work in any number of spaces since it is airy and less than 14″ deep.

Stourton Console Table
Stourton Console Table.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

Spring Color for a Bedroom, Anyone?

I love aqua, and I this bedding with its muted tones, struck me as feeling very French farmhouse and cottage lovely.

Tappen 6 Piece Coverlet Set
Aqua With Floral Coverlet Set.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

Casual Cottage Style Stripes

This chair brought back memories for me! We owned a French country settee for years which was upholstered in what appears to be this exact fabric! And those little cottage style feet! The very same ones on my old settee.

Bashir Armchair
Stripe Armchair

Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture: For the Bedroom

A few more pretty bedroom furniture and bedding finds with friendly prices.

Cavaillon Panel Bed
Cottage Style Cavaillon Panel Bed.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

Great Coastal and Traditional Lighting Fixture Finds Too!

There are too many plain and ugly dome type flush mount ceiling lights across this country, and a little update may do wonders!

Cheke Flush Mount
English Bronze Flush Mount Light Fixture.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture and Lighting.

Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture: Nightstand Ideas

This particular nightstand comes in some interesting painted finishes should you be feeling saucy.

Here’s the champagne option…

Lisle 2 Drawer Nightstand
Lisle 2 Drawer Nightstand.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

And this shade of grey is rather neutral and versatile.

Lisle 2 Drawer Nightstand
Lisle 2-Drawer Nightstand.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

A happy blue could be a cheery pop of color and it need not match the color of existing pieces!

Would you, could you, consider a pretty in pink option?

Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture: Modern Farmhouse Dining Tables & Sideboard

Here’s a dining table with dimensions which are destined to work in a variety of homes. The extension feature is lovely for holidays.

Artur Extending Dining Table
Artur Extending Dining Table.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.
Artur Extending Dining Table
Artur Extending Dining Table
Saguenay Sideboard
White Saguenay Sideboard.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.
Saguenay Sideboard
Saguenay Sideboard

Classic & Traditional Light Fixture Options

Armchairs in Neutral Hues

Ivo Wingback Chair
Tufted Wingback Chair With Nailhead Trim.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.
Ivo Wingback Chair
Grey Tufted Wingback Chair With Nailhead Trim

Traditional Sofa: Chic, Tufted, and Velvet

Now Here’s a Sectional I Can Live With!

Kearney Sectional
White Coastal Style Kearney Sectional.
Interior Design Ideas: Cottage, Farmhouse & Coastal Style Furniture.

An Interview With Linda Rondstadt, an artist living with Parkinson’s Disease…

I just love her honesty and the thoughts shared about why she never married! Ha! I’m holding Linda in my heart right now and whispering a prayer. Should you also have a moment, let’s lift her up.

If you’re a fan of her music, join me in listening/watching this powerful performance:

That song takes me back!

I independently selected products in this post—if you buy from one of my links, I may earn a commission.

Peace to you right where you are.

-michele

Shopping for items you already intended to buy on Amazon RIGHT HERE (not just items mentioned in posts) or home decor keeps decor inspiration flowing on Hello Lovely!

Hello Lovely is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.

Gold Milagro Heart
French Basket
Courtney Lamp Base
Gold Starburst Mirror
Tuscan Terracotta Urn Vase
Gold Sacred Milagro Hearts
Flameless Candles & Remote
Antiqued Brass Candlesticks
Natural Linen Napkins
Round Bronze Accent Table
French Country Lamp
White Ruffle Spread + Shams
French Laundry Basket
Metal Martini Table
Distressed White French Country Chandelier
Farmhouse Dining Table
French Country Headboard
Oval Back Counter Stool, Set of 2
Turkish Cotton Blanket
Linen & Burlap Tufted Ottoman
Gertrude Wood Bench
Weathered 4-Door French Cabinet – 71″
Upholstered Dining Chair Set
White Ruffle Quilt Set
French Louis Style Arm Chair
Avignon Coat Rack With Hooks
Round Farmhouse Dining Table
Linen Slipcovered Dining Chair, Set of 2
Louis Upholstered Bench
Pamela Arm Chair
Sweater Weave Basket
Rustic Wood Candleholders
Aged Terracotta Pots
French Country Wood Chandelier
French Linen Dining Chair
Galvanized Console Table
French Farmhouse Dining Table
Bar Stool
Beachy White Slipcovered Sofa
Rattan Armchair
Diptyque Oyedo Candle
Cross Back Dining Chair
French Country Candle Holder
French Industrial Metal Cafe Chair (Set of 2)
Designer Favorite Wall Mirror
White Farmhouse Lantern Pendant Light
French Country 6-Light Chandelier
French Country Loveseat
French Country Upholstered Arm Chair
Faux Bois Candleholders
French Ticking Stripe Pillow
Jute Area Rug
French Candle Style Chandelier
Reclaimed Wood 3 Leg Stool
Belgian Linen Sofa
Rustic Wood Candlestick Set
French Market Basket
Linen Modern Wing Chair
French Country Farmhouse Baskets
Magnus Table Lamp
Spindle Leg Upholstered Bench
Belgian Style Lamp
Modern Farmhouse Lamp
White Slipcovered Sofa
Scrubbed Wood 5-Light Chandelier
Arched Champagne Wall Mirror
Moravian Star 1-Light Pendant
Highback Armchair
Mini Pendant Light
White Vase Set
Round Woven Placemat Set
Fireclay Farm Sink (Reinhard, 30″)
Matelasse Coverlet
Quilted Coverlet
Boheme Madera Bench
Belgian Linen Duvet Set
Round Marble Side Table
Rustic Pedestal Farm Table
Teak Farmhouse Stool
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2 Comments

  1. December 11, 2018 / 10:48 am

    Hi Michele, I’m a fan of Henri Nouwen books. I’ve read several and loved them! What a beautiful tribute to Advent today, only through your trying experiences could you have written this my friend!r

    • michele
      Author
      December 11, 2018 / 11:37 am

      So cool to hear! Thanks so much for reading this stream of consciousness thing which is sooooo not jolly or light! xox

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