Merry Making With Progressive Insurance

Hello friends!  The countdown until Christmas is ON and I couldn’t be more excited about it!  December is my most favorite.  AHHHH!  I live for this time of year!  We head to the Christmas tree farm the day after Thanksgiving and spend all month getting into the spirit with non-stop Christmas music, baking, and decorating.  I may be a little bit like Buddy the Elf.  This year in partnership with Progressive Insurance I decided to up my game and go all out in our living room and talk a bit about how important it is to protect your home this holiday season from all the mishaps and unexpected bumps that life can bring.  I hope you love!

It makes me so happy to walk into that space and have it be magical- not just for myself but for Teo.  I know he’s a bit young still to fully appreciate it but I’m sure when he’s older and I show him photos of us all in our matching Christmas jammies in this decked out space he’ll be grateful for my efforts!  And when I turn on all the lights and the room sparkles, he smiles, which is the moment I live for!

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Hi friends,  I’m here today to share something that came to be on Instagram recently.  I posted the above and below in my Instragram Stories, and was shortly thereafter flooded with private messages from women sharing their stories, connecting to say #MeToo.  Each one broke my heart a little but also made me feel less alone.  That’s the beauty of it I guess, this movement that’s uncovering how shockingly common this is.  With each #MeToo we’re reminded not only of how pervasive this problem is but of how connected we all are in this pain.

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Gift Packs for the Homeless

Hi friends!  I’m popping in quick to say hello and share a little something with you.  I don’t know how you’re feeling but in my perspective 2017 seemed to be especially heavy- natural disasters, mass shootings, hate crimes, and political divide like none I’ve ever experienced.  It seemed there wasn’t a day that went by without news of strife and suffering.  I waffle between feeling riled up, ready to take on the world and fight to wanting to crawl into a hole and never come out, paralyzed with fear at the state of things.  I know that sounds so dramatic, and it is, but it’s honestly how I feel sometimes!  It’s overwhelming.  All of this has me thinking about ways that I can help, big and small.

One of the small things we’re doing is creating gift packs to keep in our car to give out when we see people in need.  I think it’s a common practice but I’d never thought of it until I saw a friend sharing theirs on Instagram stories.  I was off to Target to stock up for our own the next day.  We filled up large ziplocks with these necessities and treats- Clif Bars, tissues, toothbrush/toothpaste, wet wipes, gum, lotion, a first aid kit, water, Cheddar Bunnies, Chapstick, and Starburst.  We added in little handwritten notes with well wishes and topped them off with enough cash for a couple of meals.  I want to do more for the people in need in our community, but this is a start. Do you have any ideas, small (or large!) ways to give back that we can all manage?  I’d love to hear what you’re doing!  XX- Sarah

Hello Strangers

Hello friends!  I’m here!  I popped back in on Instagram yesterday to say howdy, and offer a peek at where my head is these days.  What I shared there is below.  I feel it applies here as well, and in case you missed it…well, here it is:

I took a few months off social media (save for a few business obligations) because I felt like it wasn’t serving me. Honestly, instead of feeling inspired I felt envious. Instead of feeling connected, I felt lonely. Instead of happy it made me anxious. If you’re in the same boat I highly recommend taking time away and reflecting.

Connecting more offline helped me re-center myself. Still, when I thought about re-joining the online world all I could think about was what it had to offer me- and given how negative my perception had become I didn’t really see a reason to return. So I sat with it some more. And then it hit me like a “wake up you jerk” slap in the face.

I’ve loved this space in the moments when I felt I had something to give, when I felt I’d shared something really true, when I hoped I might have served someone in a positive way. I was focusing on the wrong shit!!  DUH, me. 🤦🏽‍♀️  I’m here to brighten YOUR day, not mine. I’m here to serve YOU, not myself. That’s a really beautiful thing!!! That changed EVERYTHING for me. And so, a fresh start. And no better way to start than to apologize.

I’ve taken you for granted. It’s fucking AMAZING that you choose to follow me. ME! I mean, trust me when I tell you there are so many times (basically 2015-2017) when I couldn’t even begin to wonder why. But you do. And that’s a huge gift!!! I have the chance every single day to possibly bring some happiness to you, or say something you needed to hear, or encourage you in some small way. I have the gift (as we all do) to use my voice to make this place a better space to be in. I won’t let that slip past me again, you have my word. Thank you. Truly, thank you. I will do better.

PS- I thought about deleting all of my past posts because I lurve the idea of a blank slate but let’s be honest I’m not Taylor Swift, that takes so much time, and I have a baby to chase. So my past and shortcomings are staying right where they are. It’s better that way I think. Every moment is a chance for a fresh start, to do better. And that’s a gift too.

OK! So that was it. And how it applies here is a little different, but really the message is the same. I lost track of showing up in this space for YOU. It started long before this and I’ll write more about that another time. But for now, please know that I have such deep gratitude for what you’ve given me over the years. You’ve showed up here even when I was barely around and you’ve offered me your support. The messages and comments you’ve sent have been nothing but kind and generous, checking in on me to make sure I’m ok.  And before that you were my cheerleaders through some heavy times, you shared your stories and hearts with me, you were beyond what I could hope for in an online community.  I feel so lucky and like such a jackass for taking it for granted and losing sight of my purpose.  Like I wrote above, I will do better.  And I’m excited to make it up to you!  xx- Sarah

Mateo’s Nursery


Hi friends!  As we’re just a month and a half out from Teo’s first birthday I think it’s time I finally share his nursery!  I didn’t finish it until he was nearly 6 months old.  Ummmmm. Normal?  In the occasional fantasies I had about life with a baby I imagined bringing him home and sitting in his nursery breastfeeding/rocking in a state of bliss.  In real life we didn’t even has a crib set up for him and if you remember his birth story, as head over heels in love as I was, it was not a time I would describe as blissful.  Ahhh well, such is life, right?!  In the end it’s not the nursery or rocking chair or any room in our house that matters, it’s our healthy boy!  But that’s how it always is, isn’t it.  Nonetheless, when his nursery was set up I cried I was so happy.  It felt like a full circle back to my fantasies, and I soak up every minute we have in there.  Now he crawls all over it, pulls himself up to standing on every surface and sucks on the nose of that llama.  It’s all so fun!  Click through to see more, to read about my inspiration for the room, and for a full list of sources at the bottom of the post.  xx- Sarah


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Summer Essential: The Front Yard Picnic

Hi friends!  I’ve written about how our priorities have shifted over the years quite a few times- how we’ve turned our attention away from seeking satisfaction from things towards seeking happiness from experiences.  I was in a bit of a race with myself in the past- I wanted more success, more clothes, new things to decorate our house with.  None of which is a problem except for that it distracted me from enjoying what I have, and from…well, having as much fun as I’d like!  I feel more grounded, content, and at peace since we’ve made these changes.  I’m a work in progress of course, but I definitely value my time differently and you won’t find me spending it chasing the next must-have thing with the intensity I did before.  You WILL find me plotting more ways to enjoy our life!

One of the things that happened when we moved into our current house a bit over two years ago is that we made friends with quite a few of our neighbors.  This might not seem like a big deal to some of you but neither Lou nor I had experienced neighbor friends in our adult life and it turns out these relationships bring so much goodness to our days and enrich our time here on this big ol earth in ways we couldn’t have imagined.  We’re kind of obsessed with these neighbors of ours!  Every few months we host a s’mores night in our front yard- wine for the adults, s’mores for the kiddos and any soul who happens to walk by is invited to join.  It’s such a fun cast of characters and I love watching the kids play into the night- they’re living my childhood dreams of endless summer!  We’ve been wanting to add another celebration to the mix for the summer season- something a bit healthier and geared more towards the adults.  Which brings me to our newest tradition- the front yard picnic!

Gathering on blankets spread on our lawn with neighbors is the perfect way to enjoy my  summer (and life) essentials: great conversation, delicious food and drinks, summer sunshine and belly laughs!  The menu for our front yard picnic is simple, quick to throw together and most importantly: totally yummy and fun!  Sandwiches are my favorite picnic food- probably because they’re a treat I don’t indulge in too often but really, really love.  I made two kinds that celebrate what’s in season, one with heirloom tomato, pesto and ricotta, another with fig, goat cheese, mint and honey.  Alongside the sandwiches I threw together a simple green salad, bowls filled with popcorn and sweet potato chips, cherries, watermelon, berries, figs, pistachios, and saltwater taffy rounded out the nibbles.  For drinks, a selection of Teas’ Tea– my favorite for their simple Organic ingredients and bright, fresh flavor!  The Rose Green Tea is my personal fave.  They’re also what I’m sipping on when I hit my afternoon wall and need a little treat to help perk me up!

I hope this post inspires you to get together with friends and enjoy the season!  And if you don’t already know your neighbors, may I suggest a front yard picnic as a way to meet them?  Who knows what goodness they may bring into your life…  xx- Sarah

This post was sponsored by Teas’Tea, thank you so much for supporting our sponsors!