General

How to Create a Home You Love

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Creating a home is such a process, and a personal one that involves a lot of patience and decisions! I learned so much from decorating my first apartment, and then my interior education only expanded when Jase and I basically started furnishing and decorating our new house from scratch!

A little bucket of tips and tricks:

-always measure & don’t rush!

-create a budget and decide what pieces are worth a greater investment

-pin plenty of inspiration photos prior to purchasing furniture

-buy things that bring you joy and ultimately add to the overall goal of your home

 

The vision words for our house was a place of peace, an oasis, a neutral, calm, and cozy environment with a Cali European casual feel. I don’t know if you are anything like me, but I have the hardest time visualizing how something will look if it’s not right in front of me. Our house before this had lower ceilings and lighter floors; it seems obvious, but what a difference that makes in how furniture looks when you move it into a space that has high ceilings and dark floors. We thought most of our previous furniture would work in our new house, but most of it didn’t. Eeek! This big project accounted for the investment in a designer who we couldn’t love more, Kirsten Grove, who has made choosing and buying the furniture a breeze.

When choosing pieces for your home, it is so important to go with your gut. When I didn’t love a choice suggested to me, we would go back to the drawing board. I realized it is okay to say no. I am also a person that loves to finish a project, so I get very tempted to rush into decisions, but I have really allowed myself to do the opposite. We are still waiting on all of our furniture (the delay is extended because of covid-19), but we are so at peace as we accept the process and live in gratefulness! I can’t wait to give you all a virtual home tour when everything is in place, including what we did in the renovation.

Stay safe everyone! xx

How to Naturally Handle Allergy Season

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My allergies started a bit early this year, and by early, I mean November. Yikes! I tend to associate allergies with the Spring season, but I have realized different things bloom at different times of the year, and in California, the sneezing battle can be ongoing. I know most people experience these seasonal struggles, so I wanted to give a few tips to minimize them.

It all started in my eyes. It actually got so bad that my eyes were closing by themselves. My eye doctor said they will do that instinctually to avoid the potential “danger.” So fascinating! All of that to say, I was pretty desperate! After contacting my functional medicine doctor, going to the eye doctor, and shopping at the farmer’s market, I came to a natural allergy relief cocktail that has been quite effective.

  • I take a supplement twice a day with these ingredients: vitamin C, potassium, guduchi, nettle extract, quercetin, and bicarbonate salts. This has been game changing!
  • At the farmer’s market, I met the most amazing company called Bee Golden Honeys. They make such a powerful and local bee pollen (I love the one with ayurvedic herbs infused) + their honey blends are so nutritionally rich and delicious!
  • Jase and I both take elderberry syrup daily, which offers daily allergy relief + is a must for an enhanced immune system.

What do you do to help with your allergies? And please note, I am not a doctor, but the above reliefs work really well for me, so I wanted to share 🙂 xo

 

Almond Cow: Make Your Own Almond Milk

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I was not expecting to write this during a time filled with potential anxiety and so many unknowns, but I hope this suggestion brings extra hope and makes this quarantine time extra do-able. Jason and I braved going to the store yesterday because we were out of our almond milk because we were out of almonds! But our almonds are arriving via mail in the next few days, which will be a game changer.

I am so excited to tell you about Almond Cow. This machine has been the best investment and has saved us money on our grocery bill because we make our own nut milk at home. Usually making almond milk requires so many tedious steps and a lot of time. It is quite intimidating! This machine allows you to make it in minutes, and it is so delicious. We are hooked! The website provides the best recipes for every type of dairy free milk + they offer recipes to make beverages, creamer, and even some where the pulp can be used.

How are you all doing? What food and drinks (I.e. almond milk) are you depending on these next few weeks?

Our Newest Addition: Bennett Doodle Kennedy the Third

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It has been about four years now that we have had our dog’s name on stand by – Bennett. And we recently made it a little longer to Bennett Doodle Kennedy the Third lol. We don’t know how that happened, but it just stuck. Jase and I are total animal lovers and have wanted to add a puppy to our family for a few years now, but the time just never seemed right. We love to travel, and we felt like we would be absent parents. When we moved into our recent house, we felt like it was the perfect time. Our schedule is more settled, and the travel spots we have come to love the most are just an hour to a few hours of a drive away, so Bennie can come with us!

It is so crazy how much joy and love he has already added to our home. For those of you who have dogs, you know. He is just passed 13 weeks, and his little personality gets cuter by the day. We started working with a trainer on day two (fun fact: she trained all of the animals on Friends), and he is the fastest learner and gets extra cuddly by the day. The first day we had him, he only slept, and by day two, he already seemed like a different pup! He started exploring the house, and after a few days of that, he became so much calmer. Now he just likes to follow us around and stare at us. 🙂 It is the most special little relationship + Jase and I feel like we have gotten even closer through it because we are seeing each other in such a different role. It has been extra sweet, and he is growing so fast!

And real talk: training a puppy and having a puppy the first few weeks is A LOT of work, but it honestly has been work that we couldn’t love more. Jase was the most concerned about interrupted sleep, and he has been the one getting up in the night, and he has loved every minute. I sleep like a rock, and I blame that on the CBD I started taking very day a month ago; it has been game changing!

A few of his favorite things:

  1. His leash, collar, and these biodegradable poop bags.
  2. We got this harness for when he walks outside.
  3. He absolutely loves his bowls + they look so pretty in the house.
  4. We love having two sets of dog bowls to make sure they are always clean and fresh.
  5. He plays with these toys every day along with these balls.

Do you have a dog? What do you love most about it?

 

 

Tips For Hosting Guests Overnight

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This last month has been my version of heaven. My best friend, twin sister, other dear friend, my mother in law, and then my parents have all come into town back to back. These people are my people and time with them makes my heart extra full. It also has been extra nice settling into our home and taking a break from getting on a plane. Not to mention, the sweetest little pup joined our family!

As y’all may know, we are about a month away from our house being filled with furniture and styled. Right now, it is a work in progress AKA the time of waiting and anticipation. For a 9 on the enneagram (me!), the unfinished-ness of our home equates to the feeling of being unsettled, but it has also been really good because I feel like it puts me in the present. It has simultaneously made me realize that people love to live in the present with me; the importance is not on the visual, but rather the sweet time together. Such a learning lesson for life!

All of this had me extra focused on what I could do to make our visitors feel extra cozy and at home. At our core, we all want to feel at home when we are not home.

A FEW TIPS:

  • Put a cozy robe on the back of their bathroom door.
  • Get a suitcase stand so they have a place to organize their things.
  • Make sure there are hangers in their closet.
  • Put shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and body lotion in their bathroom. (this saves the effort, space and time they have to take to pack them!)
  • Prior to their arrival, ask what they eat and drink (coffee/tea/kombucha) on the daily and make sure you are fully stocked.
  • Plan the days based on their preferred pace; spread out the activities and make them relaxing!
  • Do things they love to do at home; watch the Bachelor, cook dinner, enjoy a glass of wine.
  • Diffuse essential oils in their room.
  • Put fresh flowers on their nightstand + a convenient phone charger.

What are your favorite things to do when you are hosting someone? And what do you love most when someone is hosting you?

SHOP THE POST:

Organic Linens and Towels You’ll Love

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Moving can most definitely be stressful, but in the midst of the crazy, my favorite thing about leaving a house and settling into a new space is making positive changes. I almost view moving in the same way I do a new year; it’s so nice to reflect on how I want to do some things the same while in the same breath, learning from the past and making new shifts. I believe so strongly that your home should be your oasis. It should be filled with the cleanest air possible, should be so extra peaceful right when you walk through the door, and it should be a space that gives your body a break from environmental toxins and stress.

We can’t control toxins when we are in public places, but we can control the indoor air quality of our home in so many ways. One big change I have been making over the last few years is changing all linens, towels, pillow fills, mattresses, duvet fills, and robes to organic and fair trade products. As y’all know, this can be very pricey, so you truly have to find your pace, but it is the most rewarding and beneficial investment you can make.

Boll & Branch

Meet Boll & Branch. You have probably heard me mention them many times because they are one of my all time favorite reliable companies for all things clean. Their mattress and all things bedding have made our bed a dream. They are a leading designer and retailer of luxury home goods, all of which are rooted in quality, ethically made and sustainably sourced. Because of this, their products help support thousands of factory workers, farmers, and their families. In fact, for each of Boll & Branch’s Fair Trade items sold, the workers earn a premium to invest back in their communities for social development projects and fighting poverty.

It’s All About the Quality

One of the reasons why we love this company so much is their stand for quality. The bedding is designed to last a lifetime and gets even better with every wash. The company takes pride in their products and creates long-lasting sheets with maximum durability and softness. Not to mention, their styles are timeless, so you can mix and match then all year round. My favorite part of course: almost all of their products start with 100% organic cotton.

The Gift of Hosting

Hosting visitors in our home is one thing that brings me so much joy, and I love making their temporary home feel extra cozy, clean, and comforting! A fun little fact: I love taking mental notes whenever we are staying in a hotel on things that made me feel extra cozy and at home. I wanted to mimic those things in our guest rooms as well as our own room of course. One fun little extra is hanging an organic robe on the back of every bathroom door. This is a bit nostalgic for me because my mom has done this since I was little on the back of my door, and it is one of the things I look forward to most now when I visit them in Dallas.

 

In addition to this, we always have a fresh stack of soft B&B organic towels in each bathroom, and their bedding is an absolute must. Jason and I have used Boll & Branch bedding for a few years now and the comfort, quality, and purity have completely won us over. Even our new puppy loves to get snuggly in it!

Boll & Branch is so sweet to give an exclusive code for 20% off your entire order. The code is: 20LAUREN. Happy shopping! DM me on Instagram if you have any questions. xo

What is your favorite tip to help visitors feel extra cozy in your home when they visit? I would love to hear in the comments below!

What is your favorite tip to help visitors feel extra cozy in your home when they visit? I would love to hear in the comments below!

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