I think I need to move to England.


I just finished binge watching the second season of Lark Rise to Candleford and they had me at the countryside.

And the people.

Have you been to England?  Do you live in England?  Is it as wonderful as the cinematography makes it appear?  Is it a place to leave your heart?

I froze the last episode on a picture of the rolling hills and the sunshine and the moors and thatched roofs and the dirt roads and the winding country lanes and I decided right then and there….

…I think that’s what Kentucky wants to be when it grows up. 🙂

Feeling a little like your house misses its Christmas lights?

Here are nine ways to spruce up your home on a dime.

Ideas found here.

Like dryer balls, but they’re too expensive?

Want to make your own?

DIY found here.

Have furniture that needs to look old?

Or old furniture that wants to look older?

Here’s a fun distressing technique.

And one more Valentine’s Day idea.

Easy wax stamps for your cards.

DIY found here

And in random news this week:

What every Valentine’s party needs

Love this cake

Flower eye candy

This studio tour

A love letter garland

This makeover

Printable Valentine’s Day boxes.

I want to stay here

And seriously?  What will they think of next?  Best before and after ever.

One more for the road.

Here’s one of my favorite love stories.

Happy Random Saturday to you. 🙂

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Janet Janet

    I always love Thistlekeeping and I learn so much! If the rest of England is anything like London, I love it all! We have been there three times in the last two years! Weird, huh? First was a trip to Edinbrough and then a train down to London for several days. It was all awesome. We stopped two other times coming from elsewhere in Europe just because we could. So much to see and do, the people are wonderful, the gardens are charming and I need to go back soon! Have a great week!

  2. Image for Linda Linda

    England is just like it looks. Of course there is the modern but there aren't many sets in those British shows. If you go, try for at least 5-7 days.

  3. Image for june june

    Love todays post and LOVEEEEE how you tell a story. As I sit here waiting for my hubby to get back from the PO and mailing my sons their Valentines out of state, Im reading your post and crying over the beautiful book your son made you. I miss my boys so much. Even harder is not being with them to celebrate their birthdays...my oldest turns 27 on the 16th. You are so blessed with a gift of putting words together. Thank you for todays post...very heart warming.

  4. Image for Lynn Mosher Lynn Mosher

    I haven't been a fan/subscriber long enough to go back to the story of your Mother's Day book. Oh, how precious is that! I cried right along with you in that post. Thank you for your Saturday besties. ❤

  5. Image for Donnamae Donnamae

    I don't know about England...but Scotland is where I left my heart! My son lives in London....and he loves it! Thanks for the links! ;)

  6. Image for Toni Toni

    My husband and I are planning a 45th anniversary trip to England/Scotland/Ireland. I can't wait. Oh, and I have to share that due to your postings, I just finished season 2 of Poldark! Wow....am I hooked! I want to gallop on a horse along the cliffs overlooking the ocean! Can't WAIT for season 3.....

  7. Image for Joanie McLaughlin Joanie McLaughlin

    My husband and I went to France, England and Italy a few years back. I was SO excited to see Paris that I really was just "so so" about going to London, Venice and the other cities we went to. But I was surprised when it was actually London that stole my heart. We spent 10 days in France, two in England and two in Italy, but I wish I would have spent the most time in London. I'm fascinated, too, by the English countryside as portrayed in shows and seen on blogs/facebook/instagram. It is very lovely! I may have to check out the show you've been watching.

  8. Image for Sherry Sherry

    England is gorgeous, especially the small towns....I love London for excitement(the theater, the touristy stuff, the shopping! ) However, our favorite trip was driving Ireland and Scotland in the summer! The flocks of sheep, ducks crossing the country lanes, the neat cottages with different colored doors, the neat fence rows.....the flowers!!

  9. Image for Patti Patti

    Hi Karianne, My sister lived in Manchester for a year and I was lucky enough to visit her. I'd say, Yes. It does look just like the TV shows. Everything is sooo old, in a good way. Pretty and green too. It's amazing how different it is from the US. You need to plan a trip there with your hubby and kids. Have a great weekend, Patti

  10. Image for Diane Diane

    Yes, England is as beautiful as the pictures show! I live in the South West near Bath and the countryside is FABULOUS! You have to come and visit!

  11. Image for ellen b ellen b

    Great Britain won my heart in 1973 and l974 and we were blessed to be able to return and see more in 2003, 2004, 2006, 2013, and 2014! I want to go back again and again. London is a sea of humanity. Don't stop there...go to the countryside. Scotland, Wales, Lake District, Cotswolds, Cornwall, pick a spot and stay awhile. Around every corner is something old and beautiful. TMI? We took our daughter there for her graduation gift to visit the haunts of all her literary heroes, C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, Austen, Rowling. We also threw in Monty Python. As you can see I can go on and on and on...

  12. Image for CGinAZ CGinAZ

    I went to England many years ago, and got to stay with a friend in her Mother's home. So I really got the cook's tour, along with the use of her car. Saw many things most tourists don't get to. But I was most surprised and delighted by the gorgeous green, green, green countryside the second you get out of the cities. Flowers everywhere. The people were so polite, and tried to feed us all day long. It was something I'll remember always. You would love it. I promise.

  13. Image for Rebecca Turner Rebecca Turner

    Oh, KariAnne! I reread your love stories. Somehow I had missed the first one. I threw my head back and laughed so hard. Bigfoot! Ha! Ha! Ha! Btw: I love your Thistlekeeping posts. So many goodies. Thanks!

  14. Image for Janie Janie

    England has always been a fantasy dream for me too..ever since I saw the movie about Beatrix Potter...and anything about the English countryside. I knew a horse breeder in England for a t ime..

  15. Image for Kim Schmidt Kim Schmidt

    I binged that series about a year ago and absolutely loved it. I was so sad when it got to the end. It helped me get past the emptiness I felt when Downton Abby ended....I too would love to visit England some day!

  16. Image for Jo Jo

    I'll never forget looking out the window of the plane and seeing the lush countryside it was what's I always thought it would be I love London and the countryside. Take a walking tour in London yes even the Jack the Ripoer tour is fun & an inexpensive way to spend an evening. Take this with a grain of salt I'm a 16th century British history nut, I loved sitting in Westminster taking I all the history. Just started watching "the collection" on Amazon its dark but amazing re Paris fashion right after the end of WWII. Love these posts!

  17. Image for normajean normajean

    I too, love all things English! We have visited England a couple of times. We spent one week in Cornwall, in and around Truo and Bogman. I wish I had seen Poldark before going. It would have made everything we saw that much more interesting. On our second visit we were in London and Sussex. We actually stayed in Queen Victoria's hunting lodge in Sussex. There is so much more to see. I would love to go back. Someday....maybe.

  18. Image for Pamela Allen Pamela Allen

    Ohhhh!, I watched that series as well, and totally fell in love with the people, even the ones that were a little shady. Hope you get to go some day.

  19. Image for Maureen Ryan Maureen Ryan

    Karianne, I am a devoted daily follower/reader of your blog! I also read Susan Branch's blog and it seems you two have the passionate love of England in common. Just FYI! My daughter is an exchange student over in Newcastle, England, and is enjoying it immensely.

  20. Image for gerri gerri

    Hi, I have been living in N.Carolina for almost three years now,having married an American. I miss my homeland of England more than I can say,especially as all my family and young grandchildren live there as well as all my friends. However, I have found that there is beauty everywhere and I am grateful to be living in such a wonderful country now with great people. I would just say that if you do visit England,make sure you visit the beautiful city of Cambridge and say hello from me.

    1. Image for Charley Charley

      I also live in NC (Cary) and think NC is the most beautiful state in the Union. We have beaches, mountains, and the most perfect weather. The entire state is so green because of our mild climate and pine trees. When you fly in, all you see is green. Spring is spectacular!

  21. Image for Cindy Baugh Cindy Baugh

    Larkrise to Candleford is one of my favorite shows! I even started knitting one of those wrap around shawls the women wear! But, alas my Ruebenesque figure wasn't exactly flattered, lol. Think I will rip it out and make fingerless gloves. With all the yarn it took, I could knit a village worth!

  22. Image for Wendy Wendy

    Yes I have been to England many times; however the pictures don't do this magical country justice ... The fragrances from the flowers perfume the air in Springtime... ❤️❤️ ... A must for your "bucket list"

  23. Image for Sue Sue

    As a above fide Brit, I can attest that some of England does, indeed, look just like the scenes you describe. I live in Staffordshire and the countryside around these parts is just as stunning as those in South Gloucestershire and Wiltshire where the show was filmed. Meanwhile, I fancy pulling on a power suit and working for Olivia Pope. I have just discovered and am binge-watching Scandal! Fab read as always, KariAnne. Sue x

  24. Image for Barbara Moore Barbara Moore

    Those precious, every now and then, crystal clear moments when you glimpse the adult your child is becoming truly makes every second of the hard, frustrating, 'why, oh why can't you pick up your socks' days worth it all. As always, thanks for allowing access to one of your wonderful moments. Made my day, friend.

  25. Image for Liz Liz

    Karianne, I'm so glad you discovered Larkrise. I loved it. And I love everything about England except the cities which are great to visit and see the sites but not for really getting the feel of England. I went to University of York for only one term but I fell in love with York and later visits fell in love with Yorkshire. Every single bit of it is wonderful, especially the lovely people who are so down to earth and welcoming. I try to go back every two years. On my flight back to the US I cross my trip off my bucket list, then promptly add "going back to England"again on my bucket list. It's the most special thing I do for myself. You must go!!!

  26. Image for JudyCinNC JudyCinNC

    Have not been to England - I am, however, married to an Englishman. We have a saying around here "Southern born and Southern bred, and to an Englishman she wed". I follow www.SusanBranch.com and when they go to England, we read about her and Joe's adventures. Love touring through her eyes and they just got back from Scotland and England with loads of pictures. One entire post was about the dogs she took pictures of the plaid she saw and bought every where. They usually rent a cottage as home base. They do not fly but go on the Queen Mary II to and from. Happy day and let the sunshine in. Please keep those Saturday posts coming as I check out every link. jc

  27. Image for Mildred Hoppe Mildred Hoppe

    Yes I have been To England. Yes it's as beautiful as in movies and pictures. I too would enjoy living there. Yes it is a place to leave ur heart. I hope you can visit one day.

  28. Image for Kris Kris

    My best friend and I went to England, Scotland, and Wales many years ago. It IS beautiful (even when it rains!) and the locals we met were gracious and fun. I've been pulling out my Downton DVDs to get me through the dreary weather we have been having, but I may have to check out Larkrise! Our PBS station also carries Doc Martin reruns and you may enjoy those, too. One of my favorite old movies is The Englishman Who Went Up a Hill and Came Down a Mountain. It takes place in a quirky town in Wales, with its very quirky characters. Thistlekeeping is a highlight of my Saturdays. How have I missed Faded Charm's blog? And The Nester's bathroom makeover is fantastic. Happy Saturday!

  29. Image for Cassandra e Cassandra e

    I am at this very moment here in Northern England visiting husband's family. I love Larkrise. I'm in North and South country. That's a must see movie. Textile mills and of course sheep. It is lovely. It's a bit stormy at the moment. It's funny to be surrounded by sandstone buildings close together, and then scroll past beloved farmhouses on line. Such a stark contrast. My heart loves both.

  30. Image for Teresa Gonzales Teresa Gonzales

    Love, love, love England. Antique buildings, dishes and gardens-what more can you yearn for? Don't think the films do it justice. I have been there many times, and my husband and I are hoping to return this year.

  31. Image for Chris Chris

    I'm watching on Netflix a wonderful British series which you would love, Doc Martin. If you haven't seen it try it. The story is charming and the scenery is spectacular.

  32. Image for Jeanne Jeanne

    Ooooh I want to stay at that hotel too! And I'm intrigued by the description of their signature scent- I want to go there just to smell it!

  33. Image for Lisa K Lisa K

    I love Larkrise to Candleford! Such a great series, full of quirky characters. You laugh, you cry, and they become a part of you ? And, you are a master story-teller!

  34. Image for Leslie Leslie

    I loved those cute valentine boxes! And I knew when I saw that houseboat, I was sure that one of those had my name on it. Now to find a dock for it. Thanks for always brightening my Saturday!

  35. Image for Elaine Elaine

    Well hello there from England! Yes we are blessed to live in such a great country. I live right down in the south, by the coast, just outside Portsmouth. We have travelled to many states in the US and LOVED them all but, it's always lovely to come home, to wherever you feel your soul is. We have such a long rich history, with many palaces, grand homes, and amazing countryside views, that it is easy sometimes to take for granted, what others would love to see. Thank you for reminding me of some of England's many qualities.

  36. Image for Cecilia Cecilia

    I love England! I got to tag along with my husband when he went for business. We were in London then spent a couple of days in Bath. We took a tour to see Stonehenge and a couple of villages. I fell in love! It's beautiful and the sense of history is so deep. Sigh. I'd love to go back.

  37. Image for Ellen Ellen

    I can't believe that I'm only getting to read Thistlekeeping now!! Between Niko and Orson their is more than 18 inches of snow piled up outside- that is a lot of shoveling and backaches. So, I will finally be able to peruse Thistlekeeping and it is just as marvelous on Monday evening! Many, many years ago I traveled to Switzerland, Norway, Denmark, Sweden and England with my Gram for the whole summer. It was the best way to vacation, as we stayed with friends of my Gram's most of the time- some of the best memories of my life! Thank-you for this very entertaining post.

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