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

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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!

           

Bedroom Makeover and Declaring PEACE With Serta

**This post was sponsored by Serta; all thoughts and opinions are my own.  Thank you so much for supporting the sponsors that keep this site running!**

Hello friends!  To say I’m sleep obsessed these days is an understatement along the lines of saying that Cookie Monster kind of likes cookies.  I literally count down the hours until I can crawl into bed again.  The other night Lou and I were in bed about to call it a day when he turned to me and said “The sun hasn’t even gone down yet” and as I looked at the bright light peeking out from behind our blackout curtains I realized how right he was.  In response I pulled my eye mask down, mumbled “who cares!” and proceeded to nestle further into our cozy bed.  I can’t be bothered with little details like whether it’s only dinnertime or if the sun is still shining, not when there’s sleep to be had.  At 11 pm when we were up with the baby he said to me “This is what time we used to go to bed” and I had a laugh.  We’d been asleep for 3.5 hours. We are a living cliché of sleep deprived new parents.

This renewed dedication to sleep inspired me to makeover our bedroom, I really wanted it to become a peaceful sanctuary- as cozy and relaxing as possible for Lou and me to enjoy in the few moments of downtime we have in the day, before our heads hit the pillows.  It didn’t require much, but a few key changes transformed the space for us and made it feel fresh.   I started with a new mattress by Serta– nothing improves sleep and comfort like a mattress!  This one is perfectly soft and offers just the right amount of give for me to cozy into, but is firm enough for Lou, who prefers to sleep on his back.  It’s heaven I tell you and has a unique set of comfort and support features which help solve five common sleep problems!!!

And in case you’d love to give your own bedroom an update, Serta is hosting a sweepstakes through June 16 where you have a chance to win a grand prize bedroom makeover, plus weekly prizes like free mattresses, pillows, blankets and more.  Pop over here for details on how to enter.  You’ll also find tips on how to make your own space a cozy sanctuary.

Click through below to see our completed space and read about what changes I made to turn it into my dream bedroom!  If you need me I’ll be sneaking in naps whenever I can and if it’s past 7 pm, I’ll probably be in bed soaking up as many horizontal hours as I can.

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Celebrating Mothers With Hallmark Signature

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Hello friends.  Mother’s Day is coming up in just a little over a week!  It’ll be my first, which feels especially sweet.  Although, I’ll admit that I begged Lou to celebrate me as a mother to the pups for years before Teo arrived.  He did not humor me.  HA!   In seriousness though, I love that Mother’s Day gives us the opportunity to take pause and honor the mamas who really are the backbone to just about everything.  I’ve been thinking of ways to express my gratitude to the collection of women who have supported me on my own path to motherhood, and through the first 7 months of Teo’s life.  They’ve given me so much over this time.  What I’ve come up with to show my appreciation: gourmet donuts to treat their sweet tooth,  flowers to make their day a bit more beautiful, and Hallmark Signature cards to fill with my thoughts about how much their love and support has meant to me, how I admire their strength and how much I’ve learned from watching them mother.  The extra design details in the Hallmark Signature collection make them the perfect way to show how very special I think my mom friends are.

I didn’t realize before Mateo how profound the camaraderie is between mothers.  We’re in the trenches together, we can take one look at a mom with a newborn and remember the weary joy, we can empathize with the mama whose child is having a meltdown in the grocery store with our whole hearts, and we know that each one of us is doing the very best we can and probably still feeling like we’re falling short.  In spite of this sense of kinship, there can be a loneliness in motherhood, and we can often feel unappreciated.  This is why I’m so looking forward to letting my mom community know how very much seen and valued they are, how I admire their unique approach to mothering, how I am inspired to be a better mother myself through their relentless dedication.   I hope this sweet present makes them realize how very loved they are, and I hope this post inspires you to let the mothers in your life know how much they mean to you.  Happy celebrating!  XX- Sarah  {This post was sponsored by Hallmark.  Thank you so much for supporting the sponsors who keep this blog running!  Hallmark Signature Cards are available in the card department wherever Hallmark cards are sold.}

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Patio Makeover

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Hello my friends!  Spring has sprung and Summer is sneaking up on us here in San Diego!  The breezes are getting warmer and the sunsets later, the temperatures are creeping up and I can just taste that first sunburn followed by ice cream!  All of that has me dreaming about backyard bbq’s, dining under cafe lights and enjoying long leisurely chats in the backyard while the sun goes down.  Ahhhh, Summer living!  It’s my favorite.  Unfortunately in the two years since we moved in we hadn’t gotten it together to put together an outdoor entertaining space, although as you can imagine I’d mentally decorated it a million times over.  We had a table that we’d drag our chairs from the dining room out to for entertaining.  And that was about the extent of it.  Coming from this backyard in Palm Springs, it was a sad contrast.

But now!  BUT NOW!!!!!!!!!  Feast your eyes on this charming little outdoor living space!  It’s my backyard dream come true:  modern teak furniture with crisp white cushions and graphic accents.  Bursts of color via fresh cut bougainvillea (my go-to for backyard florals because it’s so abundant ’round these parts…. and also: FREE!!)  Potted plants to give it all life.  And the chairs. The iconic wishbone chairs that I’ve lusted after for a decade.  Sure, they’re indoor chairs and we will have to bring them out from our studio when it’s time to entertain and tuck them away when we’re done.  But that’s a price I’m willing to pay because I LOVE them and I couldn’t find outdoor chairs I loved as much.  Sometimes the impractical heart just wants what it wants.  Indoor chairs outdoors.  Reason be damned.

Click through for links to the sources, to see more of this space,  and read about my design process!  And check out my idea board here for links to other outdoor living piece I found that I think you’ll love!  xx- Sarah  {This post was produced in partnership with Wayfair.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.  Thank you for supporting our sponsors!}

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