Like a Phoenix

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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}

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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.

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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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Outfit details: JumpsuitShoes, Bralette, Sunglasses, Bracelets

Simple Favorites

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Happy Monday my friends!  I hope the weekend was good to you!  Ours was mellow- we saw 3 movies and spent some good QT with friends.  Not too much to report there.  Ok, on to today’s post!  I never tire of denim and denim, or denim with chambray, and all the variations thereof.  I’ve probably worn this very outfit (or very similar) at least 3 times in the past 15 days.  For me it’s the epitome of comfortable, effortless style.  My favorite kind.  Also, I’ve had my eye on these jeans since January.  After ruthlessly weeding through my denim collection recently I decided that I needed to revisit them- and lo and behold- they were on sale during the SHOPBOP friends and family event- majorly!  And in my size, the last pair!  Quicker than you can snap your fingers they were in my cart and on their way!  Thank you denim gods, thank you kindly.  xx- Sarah

Shop this outfit:  pants: Alexa Chung for AG (here and here), shirt: Tommy Bahama, shoes: Zara (old), bag: Meli Melo, sunglasses: Karen Walker, bracelet: Miansai

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Black and Tan

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Happy Friday my friends!  I hope you all have some fun on the books for the days ahead!  I’ll be headed here on Saturday for what’s sure to be the best garage sale of all time!  Besides for that, I’m hoping for some good QT right here with this book and of course, as always, we’ll be tackling house projects like crazy people!  I’ll see you back here next week!  xx- Sarah

Shop this outfit: skirt: DSQUARED2, shirt: Tibi (old), shoes: See by Chloe, bag: Clare Vivier, sunglasses: Karen Walker, bracelets: Kristen Elspeth, Giles & Brother

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The Almost Dress

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Happy Friday my friends!  Hope you’re all having a great week!  Now, down to business: let’s talk about the geniusity (new word, you heard it here first) that is skirt/top combos that are ALMOST DRESSES.  It’s pretty amazing, right?  This one is a personal favorite.  There’s just about one inch of fabric keeping this from being a dress.  But that missing inch, it’s perfection.  I’ve never loved a missing inch of fabric more.  Weird/true.  In other news:  Lou’s birthday is Saturday!  I’ll be celebrating him soooo hard this weekend, with some of his favorites:  friends, pizza and beer!  He’s the best husband I could have ever dreamed up.  I love you Lou.  The rest of you, you have a great weekend, I love you too!  xx- Sarah

Shop this outfit: top: Ronny Kobo, skirt: Ronny Kobo, shoes: IRO, bag: Clare Vivier, bracelet: Miansai, arm cuff: Campbell, sunglasses: Karen Walker

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Tommy Bahama & SELF Magazine #4

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Today we’ve got the last of my four part series with Tommy Bahama and SELF coming to an end!  I hope you’ve enjoyed the inspiration as much as we enjoyed producing this series (see previous posts here, here and here).  It really inspired me to get in shape in a way that only knowing you’re going to be photographed in swimwear can.  HA!  Kidding!  But in all seriousness, I’ve loved bringing some fitness inspiration to the site and plan on finding other avenues to inspire you down the road.  I’m still working hard with my favorite fitness pro January (who I am very much indebted to for helping me get stronger and healthier) so this won’t completely end here!

The first part of today’s post is all about the perfect beach cover-up!  I’m loving palm print ANYTHING these days, and this little number is no exception.  It’s such an easy piece to throw on for a beach stroll, which I’ve been doing a lot of lately as we’re feeling extra lucky to be near the ocean again!  And the second part of today’s post is all about stretching it out before and after a stand up paddle board session.  Stretching is my favorite part of any workout- when I had a gym membership I was the girl who spent the first 15 and last 30 minutes of an hour long workout STRETCHING.  Which is probably why it’s a good thing I cancelled my membership and started getting exercise doing things I love instead!  But even when I’m super into a workout, I still look forward to the stretching session at the end- it just feels so good.  So below you’ll find some of my favorite stretches for before/after a stand up paddle board adventure.  Click through to see more!   xx- Sarah    {Photos: Lou Mora}

SHOP THIS POST: Floral Tunic, Bracelet, Black bikini top, Black bikini bottom, Printed bikini top, Printed bikini bottom, Paddleboard

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Tommy Bahama & SELF Magazine #3

Hey friends!  I’m back with more Tommy Bahama/Self Magazine goodness today in part three of my four post series where I share some Spring/Summer beachy fashion inspiration and exercises to get you in shape for my new favorite sport-stand up paddle boarding!  {Play catch up here and here if you missed}

Ok, let’s start with these pants.  Crazy good, RIGHT?!  I’m pretty much wearing them non-stop.  High waisted, comfortable, adorable- they check all my boxes.  And on beach days, with this top, I’m just thinking it doesn’t get much cuter (except those two girls running into the ocean with their floaties!)  Click through for the second part of the post- exercises to work that upper body!  Hope you love!  xx- Sarah    {Photos: Lou Mora}

SHOP THIS POST: Pants, Bikini Top, Bracelet, Swim Bottoms, Bikini Top, Rashguard, Paddleboard 

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