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  • Writer's pictureCourtney Petrin

Romanticizing the Ordinary

Photography Beckah Lee Photography

I recently finished the book “The Cottage Fairy Companion” by Paola Merrill and it is just the kind of book I was seeking to inspire me to write this post.

For over the past 5 years, I have been incorporating more moments of “slow living” into my life. This year I have been embracing the idea of romanticizing my daily routines. To me, it’s simply ways I can capture slowness, beauty, and ways to use my senses to bring my body and mind to a very present state.

I spent the previous 10-plus years in such a hurried frenzy that I called “living” that left me totally drained. The last 5 years have been a journey of relearning and recalibrating.

Even after 5 years, it’s still a work in progress and I’m forever looking for new tools or ways to maintain this philosophy and practice.

What is slow living?

Well, it’s simply a way in which we can be more aware and in the moment. How we can take notice and find beauty in the most mundane of tasks creates space for us to feel more connected to everything around us.

Photography Beckah Lee Photography

Our lives are a series of days which are a series of moments. How often do we really slow down to notice those precious moments?

We as a society are in a constant state of hurry. A constant state of rush. A constant state of more, of scrolling, or seeking comfort through things, devices, or vices that do not actually best serve us.

Slow living is about finding beauty, connecting to nature, and reconnecting with your inner child.

It’s about romanticizing your daily routines and viewing every moment as an opportunity for beauty.

It’s not just for Instagram but for the moments that no one sees or experiences but you. It’s about investing in your home and all the household tasks like cooking, baking, gardening, cleaning, and caring for your home and surroundings.

How you incorporate this way of living is entirely up to you. Let’s keep it real not every day is not very “magical” and many days I may feel stressed, hurried, overwhelmed, overstimulated, or uninspired. But that’s why it’s even more important I capture small ways in which I can control and shape my day and my outlook. This relates to romanticizing the ordinary to me so fundamentally. It’s really a shift in outlook. Look at routines as opportunities to include more of the things you live, even in the simplest ways.

Photography Beckah Lee Photography

I’m a huge believer in dressing for the part. I’m a very emotional dresser. If I’m well dressed, and pulled together I instantly feel better. I love to wear flowy girlie dresses when I want to feel very feminine and romantic. I think it’s how a part of getting into the mindset of how I want to invite beauty into my day. I love nature-inspired prints, and dresses and love to be surrounded by flowers and greenery.

Connecting Nature and Movement

Invite nature into your workouts

Photography Beckah Lee Photography

I love to workout outdoors whenever I can

It’s such a great way to combine my main two sources of stress relief; movement and nature. I’m a dork believer in working out at home. It works for me. It’s where I feel most at peace and centered. I don’t have to rush to a gym or class and can do things on my time.

I love yoga and the Tracey Andersen method. Both connect your mind to your body. There is a high level of awareness you need to connect your mind to each movement. Even better, you can do both right from home thanks to virtual platforms!

Set the mood and the intention

Photography Beckah Lee Photography

Put on a flowy dress, light the candles, put on music, and cook. I started getting back into cooking this year. I got very busy as we all do with work and a child that we did the home-delivered meal route for a while. I realized how much I actually missed home-cooked meals. There is something grounding about preparing your own meal using fresh ingredients. We are very fortunate to live a block from a fresh food market with fresh produce, vegetables and organic meats. I make it a point to cook 3 meals a week while my husband cooks the other days. When I cook I pour myself a glass of red wine, put on Bob Marley or Jack Johnson and enjoy the process. If you can surround yourself with fresh flowers in your kitchen along with candles and beautiful dish-ware. I’m big into dish-ware and I just love having special dishes to display our home cooked meals on. It may seem so insignificant but it makes me happy. Eat outdoors at home whenever you can. It brings such a feeling of magic to a meal.


Here is a favorite easy home-cooked meal we love.

Mediterranean Herb-crusted Chicken with Root Vegetables


  • Organic skin-on chicken thighs

  • Olive oil

  • Rosemary

  • Thyme

  • Basil

  • Salt

  • Pepper

  • Garlic

  • Onions

  • Carrots

  • Onions


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

  2. Use a glass large dish and drizzle olive oil on pan

  3. Season chicken with the fresh herbs and fresh minced garlic.

  4. Add sprigs or fresh thyme around chicken

  5. Bake for 35 mins (pro tip- I like to baste the chicken midway through with a large spoon, coating the chicken with flavors in the pan)

  6. Put oven on broil and place chicken on lowest rack. I like to add a slice of grass fed butter to the tops of each chicken for added favor. Set timer on broil setting for 5 mins-7 until skin is golden brown

  7. Use a baking sheet and add foil. Drizzle olive oil and place root carrots with chopped onions on oil. Add salt and pepper and move around carrots in pan to coat the vegetables evenly.

  8. Place in oven for 20 mins until soft

  9. Pair with a glass of your favorite Pinot Noir


Flowers and greenery

Photo Credit : Josh Young Design House

I love having fresh flowers in our home and I use them in all our projects. Baby’s breath is a favorite. It’s inexpensive, easy to find, and lasts longer. It’s also great if dried for decorating or making wreaths etc.

Pro Tip! Use InstaCart to deliever your fresh flowers if you run out of time. Instacart will deliever from our favorite store, Trader Joes which makes it super easy!


As we all do, I feel very connected to water. It’s a calming and tranquil place for me. We have an outdoor shower that is like a meditation every day for me. Living close to water and literally being surrounded by water fills me with such peace. I live for long showers and baths. Sadly we do not have space for a bathtub so long showers with all my favorite oils and fresh eucalyptus fills my cup. It may seem so insignificant but having my favorite scent or oil in my shower gives me a small piece of luxury.


Courtney's Fashion Picks

Special Thanks to :

Photography | Beckah Lee Photography

Hair and makeup | Boutique Beauty & Hair Salon | Tiffany Ann Beauty Bar | Sarasota, FL

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