Ojai Kitchen Inspiration

I’m thick in the midst of kitchen designing, and so I thought I’d show you some of the spaces that are serving up so much of my inspiration!  I’ve never designed a kitchen (well, I’ve re-desinged about a hundred in my head but this is my first chance to actually see one brought to life!  I’ve had so much fun with it, and only occasionally lay in bed second guessing my every decision and agonizing over options.  Totally normal to lose sleep over a remodel I think, right?!

So far (budget permitting) my plans are a light warm wood custom cabinet with no hardware- lowers only, with a couple of small floating shelves.  I’m hoping and praying we can swing integrated appliances and a thick countertop (I found a great product that looks very much like carrera marble but is durable AF!)  I want the kitchen to feel modern and clean- especially important because we’ll have an open floor plan.  I’m so excited that we’ll get to have a big island (does that represent the American dream these days or what?)  It’s a pinch-me moment for sure that we’re doing this project.

Honestly, when I was in my late 20’s I thought we would NEVER buy a house in southern California.  I thought the likelihood of us being able to remodel a house would be along the same likelihood that we’d fly to Mikonos in a private jet for a quick holiday and hang out with Beyonce on a yacht.  Truly, it’s one of my wildest dreams come true.  I don’t mean to say this in a bragg-y look at how lucky we are way but to tell you that I’m living a dream right now, one that I thought would NEVER happen, and that goes to show you that life is unpredictable and you can’t know what goodness is ahead for you.  I’m also telling you that because I am just so excited but also so humbled- these past few years have taught me that things can change in an instant and you’ve got to really appreciate every moment that you’re healthy and your loved ones are healthy and you’re given the incredible privilege of another day loving your people here on this amazing planet.  This has gone way off course from kitchen design but that’s how I roll these days I guess!

If you have any kitchen design tips you’d like to share, I’ll take em!!!!  Seriously, I know lots of you have walked down this road before and if you have any regrets about your kitchen choices can you share them with me (and others) so that we can learn from your experiences?!  I would be SO grateful!  My biggest worry is that it will be done and I’ll not be in love with it after all of the time, trouble and expense!    Ok, check out some more of my inspiration below!  xx- Sarah . {Image Sources:  1  // //  3 //  4 // 5 }

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Sweet Potato Noodles with Chimichurri and Bacon

I haven’t had a chance to write a health update post, although it’s on my short list!  Without getting too much into it I’ve been doing some time on the AIP diet.  It’s similar to the Gaps diet in many ways, and if I had done the stages of the GAPS diet I think it would’ve been equally effective.  Unfortunately I suspect I have sensitivities to eggs and dairy, so being on full GAPS wasn’t serving me optimally.   Man oh man the path to healing is definitely not linear, but I’m healthier than I’ve been since I received my Crohn’s diagnosis in 2011.  BUT, like I said, I’ll go into this more soon!   For now, I’m happy to be sharing a recipe I created to satisfy that comfort food craving for the times when pasta is not an option.  Say hello to sweet potato noodles with bacon and chimichurri (I would not be mad if you threw in an avocado either!)  This dish feels decidedly decadent, but it’s healthy and won’t leave you on the couch bingeing netflix and wishing you could take back that carb-fest!  So that makes it pretty much perfect in my book!  Be honest, have you ever met a bowl of noodles you didn’t love?  I have yet to.  I hope you enjoy!  And if you have any favorite AIP recipes that you’d love to share I will kiss you, I’m getting so bored of my go-to’s!!  xx- Sarah

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Mandy Moore’s Dining Room Featuring Our Sal Print!

Hi my friends!  I hope those of you stateside had a great holiday weekend!  Ours was mellow, and cozy and just the right mix of friends/adventure and good food!  I hope you all had just as much goodness, if not more!  I have a recipe post coming up for you this week, and some interior inspiration that I think you’ll love, but I’m popping in today to share this gorgeous photo of Mandy Moore’s living room (an outtake from the Architecture Digest cover story)!!  Our sweet friend Sarah Sherman Samuel is the genius behind the design, and was kind enough to introduce Mandy to this photo that Lou took before we officially added it to our print shop late last year.  We waited months to see the enormous print styled, and my jaw hit the ground when that moment finally arrived.  What a stunning dining space, right!?  EEEEK!  A true pinch-us moment!  We couldn’t be more excited to see our print in such an amazing space!  I strongly recommend you do your eyes a favor and head to Sarah’s blog to see all the tours of this incredible house, and watch this video  of Mandy giving a home tour- you’ll be left fantasizing about a mid century dream home for daysssss).  More soon!  xx- Sarah  {Photo by Trevor Tondro}


Ojai Fixer Inspiration

Happy weekend my friends!  I am SO happy to tell you that every last item on Alyssa’s wishlist was purchased in just over 24 hours.  YOU ARE AMAZING!!!!!!  Truly, thank you from the very bottom of my heart.  There is nothing better than a good solid reminder that you belong to a community of like-minded, big-hearted, kind and gorgeous people.  I’m humbled to be a part of this.  And Alyssa…excited and grateful doesn’t even begin to cover her feelings.  Let’s just say there were lots of {happy} tears on both our parts.

Now, onto the business of being inspired!  I’ve become a reinvigorated Pinterest maniac lately and one quick look at my pins will show you what I’m feeling the most these days: neutrals, organic materials, clean minimalist modern design.  And most of all, WOOD.  I’ve been trying to convince Lou that we can never have enough wood (that’s what she said!) . Right now we have plans for wood floors, wood cabinets, wood beams on the ceiling and wood windows!  Ahhh!  It’s a dream come true!  My dream home is in the forest, but there aren’t really “forests” to speak of in coastal southern California so I think covering every surface in wood is my attempt to create that forest-house feeling.  Ok, so here’s some spaces that are really inspiring ours…. what do you think?  xx- Sarah  {so much more after the jump}

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Let’s Get Alyssa’s Classroom Stocked!

*EDIT*  Update!  Alyssa’s entire list was purchased within 24 hours.  BECAUSE THE WORLD IS FULL OF GENEROUS, KIND, WONDERFUL PEOPLE LOOKING FOR EVERY OPPORTUNITY TO HELP!!!!  I cried happy tears, Alyssa cried happy tears.  Most importantly, her students will have what they need, thanks to all of the amazing people who helped out.  Thank you thank you thank you!!!

Hi friends!  I’m here today with a personal favor to ask, but before I get into it…. you see those smiling faces?!  That’s my brother Evan, his girlfriend Alyssa and our baby boy of course!  Evan and Alyssa have been with us visiting from the east coast for the past week and we’ve been soaking up every bit of fun family time with them and tourist-ing like our lives depend on it.  It’s been pure wonderful!

Alyssa just graduated with her Masters in Special Education and is about to start her first year of teaching – FIRST GRADERS!  I couldn’t be more excited for her, or more grateful to her and the thousands of other teachers around the country who work tirelessly (and often thanklessly) to educate our children.  Alyssa will be teaching in a school where she will likely have some students who have been in the foster care system, who eat their only meals at school, who are suffering from trauma/neglect/abuse/poverty.  As she was describing the challenges she knows are ahead (the tears she will shed,  knowing that she will give all that she has and will still feel like it will never be enough, having to use her own salary to buy school supplies and stock her classroom) I knew that I had to find a way to help.

Alyssa is going into a classroom that has almost nothing- no pencil sharpener, no chalk, no library of age appropriate books.  She will need to supply everything (not easy when you have student loans and a salary that doesn’t reflect your value nor the years of education you’ve received).  She has a heart of gold and will give everything she has to her classroom, and the beautiful children in it.  I asked her to prepare an Amazon wishlist of items that she needs for her students and her classroom.  I’m asking that if you are able and are so inclined you will contribute a little something to help get her going, share with others you think may want to help, or leave a little note of support for her below.  Here is the link : Alyssa’s Classroom Wishlist.

Every book, every pencil, every single bit of love would mean the world to her and those kids.  And to me, to be honest.  Few things get me more emotional than the reminder that there is so much good in the world, that the true nature of humanity is actually generosity and kindness in spite of what the media may lead us to believe.

I’ve always felt that we need to support our teachers and our schools so much more and I am not sure how to do it.  So in addition to helping Alyssa, if you know of a teacher with a wishlist, please feel free to share in the comments!  And if you know a reliable charity that is helping get supplies to teachers I would love to know about them!  Alyssa is not alone is her challenge, sadly.  I will continue my efforts to help her and any others I can, so please feel free to email me if you have any other ideas of how I may be of service.  With love,   Sarah

Piña Coco Popsicles

If you want the best treat of Summer than you’re in the right place!  I know, that’s a bold statement but SERIOUSLY!!!  These are divine- creamy, sweet, fruity, perfectly refreshing and get this- I dare say they’re healthy!!  What?!!!   With just four ingredients – coconut cream, pineapple, shredded coconut and a tiny bit of honey they have nothing in them that won’t do your body good.  What they’ll do for your spirit can’t be measured but if you are at all like me, they’ll bring you so much Summer joy you kind of won’t know what to do with yourself.  It’s a good problem to have.  Have at them my friends!  xx- Sarah

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