Hey there Friends!  We’re right smack dab in the middle of southern California summer and now that I’m feeling better I plan on milking every last sunny day and balmy evening for all it’s got! Today I’m sharing with you a few of the things that I’m loving this Summer season.  Hope you enjoy and it inspires your own Summer adventures!  xx- Sarah

1. Mason Pearson brush- My hair is especially tangly when I’ve been running amuck in the Summer (aka beach days, bike rides and sponge fights with our neighbors- it sounds idyllic and it totally is!)  This brush is my favorite ever for detangling and babying my hair after lots of summer abuse!

2.  Comme De Garcon Wallet- There’s something about having a good wallet- it’s just a treat every time you grab it!  This one was my Christmas present from Lou- I’ve been carrying it instead of a purse to keep things light and easy.

3. Karen Walker Sunnies- These guys are still my favorite and go-to.  Any season, always!

4.  Miansai cuff- The minimalist style of this bracelet speaks to me for the summer months when I want to keep it simple and chic.

5. IRO sandals- Every year I splurge on a pair of sandals that I know I’ll wear for at least a few years- and this year it was these.  Worth every penny! (sold out from what I can tell, sorry I didn’t share them sooner!!!)

6. Bumble and Bumble Surf Infusion Oil Spray- this stuff is great for the days I can’t make it to the beach but want windswept, playful locks!

7. Bumble and Bumble City Swept Finishing Spray- I adore this for styling after my hair has dried- it adds so much texture and keeps it messy.

8.  I’m hydrating this season with Naked coconut water boxes- they are pretty much my favorite beverage of them all, and they pack so well!

9. EOS Vanilla Bliss Moisturizing Shaving Cream- this hydrating cream keeps my legs moisturized and smooth so I can strut in my short shorts!

10. This Cynthia Rowley wetsuit is my must-have for playing in the waves, stand-up paddleboarding, and pretending to learn how to surf!

11. These swim fins from Patagonia give me the confidence I need to swim past a strong break- they are a definite summer MUST!

Meet Pepito Mossimo Mora


Hello my friends!  I thought I’d pop in and cure any Monday blues out there with a dose of Pepito Mora, our new baby bunny!  I’ve had a lot of down time this year while I rest and work on healing, so I’ve decided to take up a new hobby (see more here).  While researching I stumbled upon these bunnies, and, well the rest is clearly history!!!!  Pepito joined our family last Wednesday and I’ve been like a kid on Christmas ever since.  He’s hilarious and the softest, sweetest little guy I’ve ever laid my hands upon.  We’re head over tails for him!  I keep burying my face in his little belly and practically purring.  I can’t even cope with how much I adore him.  And yes, since I know the questions are coming- we’re working with the dogs to make the adjustment as smooth as possible and integrate him into the pack!  They’re doing great, Nugget even climbed into his cage with him the other day.  I’m hopeful that one day he’ll be litter trained and lounging around the house with the pups.  At which point I may very well just fall over dead from the sweetness.  Since I can barely contain myself and certainly can’t resist taking a bazillion photos, I started an Instagram dedicate to him to share.  {Insert toothy emoji smile}   There’s nothing quite like our little mustached love bunny to make your day brighter, right?!

In other news, I want to give you a little health update since I know some of you are praying for me (thank you!!) and thinking of me (thank you!!) and wishing me well from near and far (thank you!!!!!).  And finally, I have some really incredible news!  I’m feeling better!!!!!!!  I spent half of yesterday at the beach body surfing, swimming, playing frisbee and floating in the ocean with happy salty tears streaming down my face.  If you saw the season finale of the latest season of Orange is the New Black you’ll have an idea of how joyful I was.  I feel like I have a new lease on life!!!!  I’ll share the specifics on what’s changed another day, but in the meantime please know that I’m feeling great and shining with happiness from the inside out!  Wishing all of you the very best and so, so incredibly grateful for your support!  xx- Sarah


Decorist Guest Bedroom Makeover!

Happy Friday my friends!  Today I’m super excited to introduce you to Decorist, an online decorating service that’s the cat’s pajamas!  I get a fair amount of reader emails with decorating questions, and have had conversations with enough friends who feel interior design challenged to know that there are a lot of people who find decorating to be a daunting task, or don’t have the desire or time to tackle it.  But I’m a firm believer that the spaces we inhabit can bring us joy- and that having them decorated in a style that brings us happiness is a highly worthwhile endeavor!  Which is why I’m so happy that Decorist exists!  For an affordable price (starting at $199) Decorist will pair you with a designer that matches your style for personalized design services, of if you prefer you can select your own.  They’ll tackle projects large or small, work with your budget, provide two design plans AND a revision.  And as a major bonus, you can purchase all of the items in one place- through Decorist- and trade discounts are offered from over 100 retailers!  So good, right?!  Read below for the process I went through working with elite designer Jennifer Stewart to design a guest bedroom for our house!  {Get your own Decorist Makeover here. Enter code AHouseintheHills20 for $20 off your makeover!}


The first step after purchasing my makeover was to create my design profile by selecting my favorite items out of a variety of styles so that I would be paired with a designer whose style matched mine.  I was so happy to see my virtual room come together (above) and was deemed a “modernist at heart” by Decorist.  Sounds about right- the description fit my style to a tee!

Next up I filled out a short questionnaire about the project and uploaded a photo of the drawing I made of the room with all of the measurements.  It was a pretty rough sketch but the measurements were accurate and I knew it would be enough for her to get the idea since it’s such a simple room.  But if the room were more complicated I would’ve uploaded photos of it as well.  I also sent along this Pinterest board to share my design aesthetic (uploading specific inspiration photos is also an option!)


After that it was all in Jennifer’s hands and I was SO excited to see what she would do with our room!  A few days later she sent along these design boards, shopping lists and her thoughts about each of the rooms!  Aren’t they both so great?!


I went back and forth between the two boards so many times and finally decided that I preferred the second board.  But I wanted the room to have just a bit more, and since we have so many circle mirrors in my house I wanted to see another option for above the bed.  I responded to Jennifer and gave her my feedback about the room for her to incorporate into the plan.  You can see the final design below, I love it!  The room design fits perfectly with what we have going in the house already and would be such a cozy and inviting spot for our guests.  Pretty brilliant right?!  Hope you love as much as I do!  xx- Sarah

final board design-design- finalshopping list

Slow Down, Radishes! Slow down.


I breathe in and I remind myself, you are here- exactly where you are meant to be.  I breathe out and I remind myself, you are ok, you will always be ok.  I’m practicing being present: fully, wholly, exactly where I am.  And in doing so, the simplest things- colorful radishes cooked in the best quality butter I can get my hands on with thyme picked from my neighbor’s garden and chunky flakes of Maldon salt- remind me that I’m in heaven.  We’ve already arrived my friends, we just have to open our eyes, our hearts and enjoy it.  Life is full of beauty, full of wonder, and around every corner is the opportunity for happiness and love.  It’s yours for the taking.  Slow down my beautiful radishes, slow down.  xx- Sarah


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Like a Phoenix


I’ve never been good at pretending to be someone I’m not.  The conundrum is, I’ve also never really known who I am.  {photos: Lou Mora}


When I started this blog at the end of 2011 I was looking to create something that would push me to have more fun, to explore the creative sides of myself that I wanted to spend time on, to hopefully eventually share some of it with whoever might be interested.  I hoped to be authentic, to be inspiring, to serve others, to feed my creative spirit.  I was starting the blog and leaving behind a business that had sucked the very life out of me.  But then, I turned the blog into a business.  I’m great at business, it’s my thing.  I’m less good at fun.  So A House in the Hills fulfilled my initial desires, and then became, in some ways, a burden.  The pressure to keep up, the pressure to look good, the pressure to be this person that I’d created- this appearance.  It fed the deeply insecure little girl inside of me who is terrified that she’s not lovable- each achievement, each press feature, each comment of reassurance became something that I not only enjoyed, but defined me.  My very self worth depended on it.


This is not to say that what I’ve shared hasn’t been authentic.  It 100% has- it was all that I knew.  But this year, in the midst of the darkest days of my life, I’ve realized that I’m just now starting to explore who I truly AM.  I’ve always identified myself by the way I look, the people I love, the life I’ve created, my creative endeavors, my successes, my failures, the things that I’ve survived.  But I’ve never really spent the time doing the work of figuring out WHO I am.  I’m just now meeting myself, I’m just now getting to know myself.  I’m just now starting to believe that I’m lovable- and all of the reasons why have nothing to do with any of the things I thought they did.  As always, I’m sharing with you the best way I can, the only way I can.  Things are changing around here- inside me, 0utside me, on the site- because I’m committed to being honest.  I’m committed to revealing my true self as I discover who she is.  I have a feeling she is wildly better than the girl who I’ve thought I was.  I’m becoming the woman I’m meant to be.

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