Bah Humbug

I’m about to bah humbug you big time over here. Christmas is annoying me extra this year. Everyone around me keeps asking what to get Jolie and me and the answer is nothing. We are so so so so so so fortunate. WE NEED NOTHING. Seriously, there’s not a single thing we need. In fact we’re drowning in a bunch of things we don’t need! I cleaned out my basement last weekend and THREW AWAY an embarrassing amount of things that I hadn’t touched in years. It was all just collecting dust in some dirty corner of my basement. Embarrassing maybe isn’t a strong enough word. I was disappointed in myself. Why do I have so much stuff?!?! I CANNOT WAIT to get the Christmas tree out of the house and with is going a bunch of stuff that is nothing more than that…STUFF. I’m longing for some empty corners and breathing room. I like to call myself a really bad minimalist. I always feel so inspired by minimalism, but I’m pretty terrible at it. Just maybe if I flood myself with enough beautiful minimalism it will rub off on me.

Can we all just boycott Christmas consumerism and refine what we own? (Probably not the right stance for a store owner to take….opps…oh…well.)

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If those pics don’t make you want to clean out more than just your basement…I don’t know what will. I’m going to be doing some major cleaning out after the holidays!

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Blog Nostalgia

I LOVE designing for other people. #dreamjob I can’t even fathom how I got so lucky that this is my job, but every now and again I get a little nostalgic for the days when I just sort of dreamed up designs for no one in particular. Maybe I’m sort of nostalgic for my blogging days in general. So, today I’ve got a heavy dose of nostalgia brought to you by pieces I’m obsessing over lately!

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Fist up… This SD Home sectional.

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I’m over sectionals people. OVER IT! Except for this one. I’ve got googly heart eyes for this one! Sometimes a room’s layout just calls for a sectional, and this one is about the only one I like these days. Those bench cushions and no arms keeps it clean minimal and updated… LOVE! Available through our store Shine Design Home!

Possibly my favorite thing in the world is a woven accent chair! They just scream my style!

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I’ve been in love with this art from Urban Outfitters for a bit now… Why don’t more people want girl booty in their living room? I for one do…

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I love that this photo from Minted gets geometric without being too bold.

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Crushing HARD on this chair from Anthropologie. It’s a dream chair!

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I’m trying to get every client ever to use this coffee table. It’s the most gorgeous rustic metal with a global shape and feel.

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I can hardly handle coffee tables. I’m a kick my feet up on an ottoman kinda girl, but if your going to have a coffee table, it might as well be an indestructible metal one. Let’s be honest, I’m going to kick my feet up either way. Available through Shine Design Home!

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Why not have some little metal side tables to go with it? Available through SD Home.

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I think every room needs to have one piece with a mid-century feel. Love this SD Home light to bring in that feel.

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I made my boyfriend buy three of these pillows, because…um…they’re such a beautiful pillow! Available at SD Home.

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It’s really only a matter of time before I make him buy this pretty rust pillow, too.

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This completely pointless designing is maybe not all that pointless. It’s nice to remember of exactly what my own vibe is. Maybe I’ll keep it up? Or maybe not…It’s hard to say. Either way it was fun, and now I’m going to go daydream in the corner about buying myself that Anthropologie chair.

I’m an Ostrich

It’s that time of year, everyone! The time where I post a random blog post about lessons I’m reluctantly trying to force myself to learn. So, here it goes….I hope everyone out there can relate.

I’ve told this story before, but it’s worth a revisit. I needed to revisit it…..

When I was living in South Africa, I went on a game drive with some friends I had made there. We were out admiring all the wildlife, and when we came to the ostrich, the driver told us what it’s like to ride an ostrich. Apparently, you get on and just hold on for dear life. What a funny thought, right? My friend then said, “Every time I see an ostrich, I think of that Bible passage in Job.”

“The wings of the ostrich flap joyfully,
though they cannot compare
with the wings and feathers of the stork.
She lays her eggs on the ground
and lets them warm in the sand,
unmindful that a foot may crush them,
that some wild animal may trample them.
She treats her young harshly, as if they were not hers;
she cares not that her labor was in vain,
for God did not endow her with wisdom
or give her a share of good sense.
Yet when she spreads her feathers to run,
she laughs at horse and rider.”

I looked at those big, ugly, dumb birds, and suddenly the thought of riding them wasn’t so funny. It seemed awesome. Riding an ostrich might be on my bucket list now. Those birds can run. They suck at pretty much everything else, but they were born to run.

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I took Jolie to the zoo a week ago and there was that ostrich up close just sort of just staring at us. I’ve been thinking about that dang, ugly bird ever since. Silly, right? Here comes the lesson part…

I legitimately can’t remember the last time I sat on my couch. Most nights I don’t have the opportunity to even think about sitting down until like 9pm, and that’s only if I choose to ignore the piles of laundry I’ve been consistently ignoring for a week already. 2 hours of commute a day, and consistent 30 minute long temper tantrum stand offs with my toddler have me in the weeds, and I’m struggling to find a way out. I actually cried over a road closure yesterday. Actual. Tears. EVERY road that I take to and from the babysitters and to and from work is closed, and then yesterday my detour was closed, too. Instant tears, because 10 extra minutes is like gold… travel across the country in your horse and buggy amounts of gold.

I have high standards for myself. I have a career that I love. It’s important to me. I HAVE to have a clean house. I just do. I HAVE to get to the gym on a regular basis. It’s a non comprisable for me. Screw being skinny and fit…It’s just about sanity at this point. It’s important to me to provide healthy meals for my daughter. It’s important that I spend time with her and interact with her. Not to mention sleep…trust me…NO ONE wants me to compromise on sleep. I’m somehow managing to do it all, except just not very well. Every single one of my “non comprisable” things is suffering because there just isn’t enough time in the day. I’m tired and constantly feel like I’m failing.

I had a moment the other night when I got into bed without ever sitting down for the like the billionth night in a row and though, “Holy shit, I think this is just parenting. I think this might be just how it is. You just don’t ever sit down.”

I put so much pressure on myself to be perfect, but I’m really just an ostrich. As desperately as I want to be that girl who bakes and brings you cookies because you had a bad day…I’m not. When the hell do you guys find time to bake, anyway?!?! And how are you good at it? I can’t think of a single time my cookies ever turned out like my grandmas. Why can’t I ever remember to send “Thank You” cards?!?! I should be a Thank You card person. As much as I wish I was making Jolie a homemade Halloween costume…My mom bought it for me, because I don’t even know when I would have time to go out and buy one…let alone make it!!! Do you see all these grammatical errors?! I desperately wish I could commit the proper ways to use commas to memory, but I can’t. I won’t.

I’m just an ostrich. It feels like I suck at everything, but like the ostrich, I have that one thing and damn it… it’s enough. I’m enough.

I’m in the weeds, and the weeds are my new home. I think I’m done feeling like I’m failing. What a waste of precious brain space?! If we have clean underwear…I’m winning. Peanut butter sandwiches and frozen broccoli once a week is TOTALLY acceptable. My toddler eats broccoli…I’m winning. Cookies are bad for you. Thank God I suck at making them…winning. I usually only have like 30 minutes at the gym and at least 10 minutes of it I get caught talking to someone, but I went….winning.

Why did we all start believing we have to be good at everything anyway? That’s dumb. I’m an ostrich.

Slowing Down

Occasionally, I throw out a personal post. I always a get a super positive response when I get all emotional and pour my heart out. Why not give the people what they want, right? I’m having an emotional past few weeks. It’s bound to pour out anyway. So, here we go…

I’ve been thinking long and hard lately about slowing down. Some days it feels like everything I do is just going through the motions, and at the end of the day, I can hardly think of a single moment where I felt full. Full of life, or hope, or compassion, or really anything. I’ve allowed myself to get so busy with life that I’ve stopped living.

My new favorite place in the world is the steam room at the gym. I  work out and then spend 10 or 15 minutes just sitting in there. After my initial 60 seconds of thinking about how the place has to be just crawling with all sorts of nastiness, I shut my mind down. I think about the sweat rolling down my skin, the warmth on my face, the thick air going into my lungs. I become more in-tune to my body and the little aches and pains. I correct my posture, because it turns out sitting up straight feels good. For 10 minutes I sit completely present. I don’t let myself think about anything other than siting in that room, in that moment.

It’s a practice I’m really trying to carry into the rest of my life. It’s easy in the steam room when stimulus is at a minimum. Scratch that, it’s not even easy in there. It takes focus and intention. Day to day life it’s even harder, though. Maybe nothing is more important than my time in that steam room. It’s there that I’m learning and teaching myself not to miss out on moments like these.

It’s so easy to let my mind run wild. It’s easy to worry about what I’ll make for dinner, if Jolie will sleep well tonight, if I should grocery shop today or tomorrow, if my family’s health will last, if I’m a good mom, if I’m a good person, if I’m even getting this life thing right at all.

It’s when I miss soaking in every kiss she gives me that I know I’m missing the whole point of living.

When I don’t soak in a good view, I’m missing it.

When I don’t get outside and enjoy nature, I’m missing it.

When I drink my coffee on the run instead of sitting down to really enjoy it, I’m missing it.

When I’m not quiet enough to really listen to other people, I’m missing it.

When I’m not taking time to do the things I love, I’m missing it.

When I let anxiety and fears of the future keep me from pursuing my dreams, I’m missing it.

When I don’t take time to notice and all the beautifully ordinary things happening around me..I’m missing it.

I’m heading into the most important phase of my life. I’m raising the next generation of adults. It’s so crucial that I slow down, that I take time to be filled… Filled with happiness and joy, compassion and understanding, acceptance and tolerance, love for nature. If I’m not taking the time to be filled with these things, I have nothing to pass on to Jolie.

It’s time to slow down. It’s time to take a walk, read a good book, have good conversations with friends, spend time with family, pay attention to the food I’m putting into my body and care for it.

It’s time to be present.


It’s time to watch that little girl’s face light up and discover what this life is really all about right along with her.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Warm Neutrals

Ok kiddos, I mentioned this a few days ago, but gray and cool tones are on their way out and beige and warm neutrals are making their way into the hearts of designers everywhere! We’v been doing the grays and cool tones for a while now, and don’t get me wrong, they can be lovely. If more a modern vibe is your thing than grays and cool tones may still be the way to go, but I think we are going to start seeing more and more warm neutrals.

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My house has been going this direction for a long time. I’ve always loved an earthy vibe, but I’m craving a bit more warm tones.

Here’s how you accomplish this style!

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A warm rug. This rug is to die for. We used it in a client’s house once, and I just wanted to lay down, profess my love to it, and never get up.

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Natural elements and texture. These pots add a warm and earthy vibe.

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Designers seem to be turning to photography more and more for art. Personally, I love it! Nature always makes the best subject.

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And when you don’t do photography, warm tones in art are the way to go.

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Pillows are the easiest way to add warmth. Warm pillows mixed with some neutrals are the way to go.

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It’s always smart to add lots of different textures and materials. Wood and baskets are a must.

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Who doesn’t love leather?! It’s the perfect addition to this look.

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And you should also add something old or antique.

Keep the walls and major furniture light and neutral and you have yourself a warm and earthy space!

 

What I’m digging

I’m sleep deprived, but I’m feeling ready to conquer this week! (It’s totally the coffee) Let’s hope it lasts, but I’ve got an extra pep in my step, and I’m ready to go! So, why not add a little blogging to the mix with some things I’m really digging lately.

I’ve been on a mission to accessorize more. I have to give a shout out to my boss who is always accessorizing with the cutest jewelry. I’m trying to keep up! Truth be told, I’m usually too lazy to throw on a necklace and earrings…Sad but true. I’m working on it though!

I’m loving delicate chokers right now.

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This one from Pacsun is LOVE!

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I seriously never thought I would say this, but I’m digging warm tones in interiors. I’m such a fan of blue, but lately I’m craving a little red in my life.

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http://thedesignfiles.net/2016/06/helen-gory/

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Never did blush built-ins look so lovely. I think we’ve ridden out the gray to the end, my friends. Gray is out and warm neutrals are in! I am 100% in love!

I don’t know what it is about September that just makes you feel done with summer clothes. I’m ready for sleeves, but let’s be honest….it’s still freaking hot out! I’m loving open back shirts for this transition of seasons. It’s just so cute!

I’m OBSESSED with nude nails, and I feel like I’m forever trying to find the PERFECT nude color.

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We’ve used a couple of Bird of Paradise plants in a few projects at work lately, and I’ve been dying to try one out in my house!

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I’ve been in love with loose fitting and flowing tops lately. I have this one from Urban Outfitters and I LOVE it!

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Or really anything with a boho vibe.

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And there it is. All the things I’m digging lately.

 

Where Have You Been All My Life? 

Hey, Hey, Hey, everybody! Ive missed you! I’ve got a little “Must Haves” post for you today. These are things that I just absolutely couldn’t live without. It’s about to get real 1st world shallow up in here! I truly could live without every single one of these things, but trust me….I don’t want to…AT ALL!

First up…My Nespresso and milk frother.

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I’ve had this bad boy since my birthday in March, and we’ve slowly settled into a FOREVER relationship. Let me tell you… This thing has taken my mornings from “UHHHGGGG WHY?!?!” to “Coffee?!! OK! Let’s do this thing!” I seriously look forward to my morning cup of Joe every single day! It’s like having Starbucks on my counter. The milk frother is a total must, too! I really truly don’t know how I ever lived without this thing .

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So, I’ve been on a high fat, low carb diet for close to 3 months now, and let me tell you…I have NEVER felt better! Maybe I’ll go into more detail about this on a post later, but let’s just say my energy levels are insanely different. I barely recognize myself! Coconut oil is key in this diet. I use it every morning in my coffee. I cook with it. Sometimes I consider drinking it! Just kidding…kinda. I couldn’t live without this stuff.

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Along with the diet theme, apple cider vinegar is my new fav “treat!” I know that sounds weird, but I mean it! I LOVE vinegar! Every evening I’ve been mixing a little bit of apple cider vinegar into a big glass of water with a little lemon and stevia. It’s seriously yummy and I look forward to it every single night. ACV apparently has all sorts of health benefits and it’s making me drink more water, so double plus!

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I’ve also been hitting the gym hard lately. Or at least trying! It’s always been a struggle for me to spend money on sports bras. I’ll buy yoga pants all day long, but sports bras….What a waste, right?! Well not anymore! I cannot live without a pretty sports bra these days! Forever 21 has changed my life with their super inexpensive (and oh so pretty) sports bras! We’re talking like $14! I do have one Lululemon sports bra, and yes, it provides more support and will probably last longer, but besides the drastic price difference, they really aren’t that different!

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Ok, this stuff has changed my life, people! I’ve been oil cleansing with hemp seed oil for almost 3 months and I will NEVER go back to a cleanser. NEVER. PERIOD. My face has never felt or looked better. I’m 100% sure that diet plays the biggest role in this, but I LOVE oil cleansing. I’ve added a few drops of lavender and frankincense essential oils to my hemp seed oil, as well. Every morning and night, I massage this into my face and then wipe it away with a warm washcloth. It takes off all my makeup and leaves my face feeling soooooo fresh but also moisturized. I CANNOT live without this now. No way.

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Let me tell you how bad I wish I could hit up a nail salon every other week. I REALLY wish, but I just don’t see it as a possibility for me. With the hubby MIA, I just can’t see finding a babysitter every other week so I can get my nails “did” as a possibility. Someday girls….Someday. For now… I can’t live without my home gel nail polish. Painted nails is a must for me, but I cannot deal with chips! I get my gel polish out about every other week and give myself fresh polish!

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This Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector is new to my makeup routine, but I’m in love! It’s pricey, but I’m obsessed with the glow it gives my skin! Sometimes I use it all over and sometimes I use it more as a highlighter. I absolutely LOVE it! I had been using the Becca Shimer Powder, but now that I’ve cleaned up my diet my face isn’t nearly as oily and I wanted to try the cream version instead. LOVE! It’s love I tell you!

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Shout out to my perfect browed friend, Leah, on this next one. I could not take my eyes off her oh-so-perfect eyebrows one day, and she was kind enough to share her secret. This Anastasia Beverly Hill Dipbrow Pomade is the bomb diggity…Like seriously! It took my brow game to a whole new level! I’ve tried tons of products and none of them even come close to this stuff. It stays completely put through even the sweatiest of workouts. This number 7 brush is a total must too! Precision is key and this brush is perfect for fine fine fine lines. This will forever be my go to brow product! I use the Taupe color on a daily basis and the Soft brown when I’m feeling in the mood for something a little more drastic.

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My obsession with this candle runs deep. REAL deep. I hate that I’m so in love because it’s expensive, but OMG I can’t live without it. When I burn it is fills the entire house with the BEST smell in the world! Even when it’s not burning, I can smell it every time I walk by. I buy these things in mass quantities. I’m obsessed!

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Last, but not least…. Blonde hair…Where have you been all my life?!? Now that I’m a blondie, I can’t imagine going back. Shout out to my amazing hair ARTIST, (truly, she’s an artist) Andrea Whisman.  I LOVE my salon days with her. Even though the blonde is maintenance, my salon days are the best escape! I couldn’t live without it!

Ok kids. That’s it. Toodles!