a family day date

Thursday, April 13

If we're ever about to take the kids to go do anything out of the ordinary, ie: not the park and not the library and not preschool, we usually say something to the effect of, "get your shoes on, we're going on an adventure!" And the magic of kids is that they don't ask questions. They just bounce around in the living room, stomping their feet and yelling, "adventure! adventure!" and then we show up at Home Depot, and they're like um what the crap kind of adventure is this.
No jk, they love home depot more than the zoo I'm pretty sure.
So when we needed to go to the greenhouse to start scouting for our backyard, we told them to put on their shoes for an adventure. Isla was mainly just stoked because she's never been to a greenhouse and green is her dad's favorite color. Makes sense.
Between Tyson and my schedules, most of the time we only have evenings spent together as a family, so it feels rare that we get a day date to go out all together. Kind of a mini vacation of sorts, especially when visiting places in our town that we've never been before. We first stopped for lunch at a place called The Bodacious Pig. (Which if you like BBQ, and are ever in Boise, you should go because, yum)
 The weather has been warming up so nicely lately, we got to eat outside too.
While we waited for our food, they gave us some paper and crayons for the kids, and Isla asked me to draw a picture of Everett's face. When Everett saw my "artistic rendering" of what his face looked like, he was not pleased. So this is him tracing his face with a crayon to demo what he ACTUALLY looks like.
  (P.S. Pigtails! Barely! But still!)
Tyson trying to capture my BBQ face. Lay off me, I'm starving!
Then to the greenhouse! If you're local, you must go hit up Edwards Greenhouse, omg I will probably retire there. It is just endless canopies of green and like a hot blast of summer. Everett has been talking non-stop about getting our garden going and so he was in heaven. I tell you what, this kid. Last week he demo'd exactly how to build our garden box with his legos and then the other day I got full-on schooled about the weather patterns that create tornado's.
Going anywhere with Isla is sort of like what I imagine traveling with a celebrity is like. A celebrity who mainly attracts middle-aged women, that want to hold her and touch her and give her high-fives. And then when she obliges, they scream with delight and Isla forgets why she allowed them a high-five in the first place. It's tough being two-and-a-half with really adorable pigtails.
 The succulentsssssss!
I swear I belong somewhere where cactus grows freely in the front yard.
 And yes, Isla did find the one small trickling fountain in the entire place. Her spirit guide lead her.
The kids ended up picking out their very own tiny succulents. Everett chose an aloe plant so obviously, Isla did too. Everett loves finding those microscopic "scratches" on his body, so that he can squeeze a little fresh aloe onto them.
And then on the drive home, with the windows open to the sunny spring air, the kids fell asleep, like some sort of fairy tale ending to our afternoon. We soaked it up like a vacation. Sometimes all you need is 30 minutes with your feet out the window.

This post is in partnership with Born Shoes, who's shoes are to die for comfortable, so I can wear them anywhere and everywhere without worrying about keeping up with my babies. Tyson and I are both wearing the Bayne and Bima styles here!

i have news!! (and it's not a baby)

Monday, April 10

So I’ve been reading this book called, You Are A Badass. As one does when trying to recover from a serious case of doubting one’s own badassery. Or rather recover from what's felt like a giant creative rut. A slump in inspiration. With a heaping side of "look at all this creative juju blossoming around you. Like, get it together. You know you have more to give so why AREN'T you. Why CAN'T you??"

Emotionally and mentally, it was a bit of a rough winter.

So anyway, in this book, which I so highly recommend by the way, it has this short little life-changing paragraph. It says:

"All the stuff we're so worried about creating and fixated on becoming is already right here, right now. The money you want already exists; the person you want to meet is already alive; the experience you want to have is available, now; the idea for that brilliant song you want to write is here, now, waiting for you to download the information.  The knowledge and insight and joy and connection and love are all wagging their hands in your face , trying to get your attention. The life you want is right here, right now. Think of it like electricity. Before the invention of the light bulb, most people weren't aware of electricity's existence. It was still here, exactly the same way it is right now, but we hadn't yet woken up to it. It took the invention of the light bulb to bring it to our attention. We had to understand how to manifest it into our reality."

Like!! YES.

So I was sitting there, thinking about this idea of manifesting, a concept which I was only vaguely familiar with. And I suddenly realized that for my entire life, I had been unknowingly manifesting the exact life that I'm living right now. Not the specifics of it necessarily. But when I was a little kid, all that I wanted in the whole world was to grow up and go to college, get my degree, marry a husband, and have some babies. And that's as far as I got! Those were all the things I wanted the very most. There is literally a journal entry about my future husband that I wrote when I was 8-years-old. I thought I was going to marry Steven Stockdale at that point, but the details are irrelevant.

Point is, that everything I set out to accomplish in my life has been done. Check! Complete. Not that parenting is done or anything, but the life that I set out to go get? I got it. And it's a dream, it's wonderful, and I'm so incredibly grateful every day for this beautiful life that I get to live with the people I love.

However, I have found myself, for a while now, with this desperate feeling down to my bones that there is more. I have more to give, more to learn, more to accomplish, and something else coming that felt like it was right at the edge of my fingertips, but for the life of me gosh dammit, I could not figure out what it was. I prayed. I prayed so hard. Please! Enlighten me! Give me something. Help me be who I'm supposed to be.

Fast forward to a few weeks ago, when I was contacted by one Taylor Hartley, a girlboss and instant friend, who was in the early stages of rebranding her company, Cove. She asked for just a few minutes over the phone to ask some interview questions and research her target client base. By this time I'd already worn her clothing, and loved it, so I was like, duh yes, I love you, let's chat. Three hours laterrrr, we eventually hung up, and I'm totally speaking for her when I say this, but we bonded. It was a click. A serendipitous click, that ended with her saying something like "I wasn't planning on asking you this, but would you ....?" And me being like, "yes!" very normally on the phone and then not being normal about anything afterwards.

So here we are. I am so completely thrilled and excited to say that I will be joining Cove on the ground floor, as their creative director, diving head first into all of it and building a beautiful brand with big goals. Taylor's strengths are my weaknesses and her weaknesses are my strengths, and it is an almost alarmingly complimentary partnership for two people who just happened to talk on the phone one day haha. Although I say that completely tongue in cheek, as I full-heartedly believe that there was nothing happenstance about it.

I am unstuck you guys. This was it. I'm jumping on a plane to China next week and to an island photoshoot after that, and my brain is on fire with inspiration. And it feels so good I want to cry. I am so grateful. Grateful to give, and to make and to learn and to do something that's scary, grateful to be brought closer in line with a more powerful version of myself.

I will of course, still be documenting here, cause there's still a lot to be said, and a lot to experience and a lot of beautiful pictures still to take. Thank you so much for being the steadfast friends that you always have been, and allowing me to be as personal or as impersonal as I've needed to be on here for all these years. Love you babes. I'm so excited to share with you what's next!

my totally radical, transformative, borderline spiritual skin experience with my new korean beauty routine

Monday, March 27

OK I am pumped about this post! A few days ago on insta-stories, I talked a little bit about the crazy changes that I've been seeing in my skin after only a few weeks of implementing my new Korean skincare routine. Specifically, a complete elimination of the perpetually clogged pores in between my eyebrows, a shrinking of the pores at the end of my nose (seriously, it's so smooth, feels like a baby's butt right now), an evening of skin tone, and zero of those sporadic breakouts that I would get on my chin from time to time.
Like, major major strides for me! 
My skin is still by no means perfect. I went to go get my first facial the other day, and the facialist strongly recommended microderm abrasion to even the texture and tone of my cheeks. But man, if I'm experiencing this kind of a response in my skin after only a few weeks of using these products, what does a year of care look like?? Is this turning into a soapbox now?

I do realize that k-beauty isn't exactly a new concept in the beauty world, but it took me a hot second to hear about it. When I first heard about the traditional 10-step routine, my first impression was, 
woah, INTENSE. 
This may have something to do with the fact that my own personal nighttime routine has traditionally involved a solitary make-up wipe, and some moisturizer. But I had long-admired the skin of the women who were now raving about their experience with the routine, and so I did some research, made the investment and went for it.

One of the first things I learned, what that it's not ACTUALLY a full 10-step routine every single night. Some of the steps are only implemented once or twice a week. And it's totally customizable to your own needs or preferences. Like so far, I've totally skipped doing the face mask step (although I'm headed to Ulta to grab some soon). And I've also left out the spf step too, because I've relied on other products I use that already have spf in them.  So anyway. You do you girl! And I'll walk you through exactly everything that I've been doing, and the skin science behind them.

Here's my counter right now. Is the sheer amount of product shocking to you? Because it's shocking to me. I'm still getting used it. But getting used to it in the way that one gets used to basically getting a facial every night. I'm not struggling.
Before I ordered each item, I did a ton of research and read SO-HO many reviews. So know that each of these are well loved and tried and true favorites in the skincare community. And for good reason, I've discovered!
 K! So here's it is.

When I first heard that you're supposed to clean your face twice, my initial reaction was, WHO HAS THE TIME.
But now it makes sense. And it's honestly one of my favorite parts. The first step is to cleanse with an oil-based cleanser. Most of our make-up is oil based, and since oil and water repel each other, when I was only water-based cleansing, I was leaving behind a lot. I've been using Banila Clean It Zero, and it's lived up to every bit of hype. 
Then, even though I'm left feeling pretty clean, I water-base cleanse with Kiehl's Ultra Facial Cleanser to remove the leftover stuff like sweat and dirt and whatever my two-year-old wiped on my face that day. 
The result is skin that is so SQUEAAAKY clean, it's been a bit of an eye-opening experience how not clean my skin has been over the years.

This step, depending on the sensitivity of your skin, only needs to be done 1-3 times a week. Right now, I exfoliate twice a week using Neogen Bio-Peel Gauze Peeling Wine. And dude. Your initial reaction after opening the lid might be to drink the stuff, because it smells SO GOOD, but try to restrain. The lactic acid on the pads really gets in there, removing dead skin and debris from your pores, with the star ingredient being reservatrol, which naturally comes from red wine and helps prevent pigmentation issues and wrinkles. Rave reviews on this.
 // TONER //
Toner preps the skin for the remaining products, shrinks pores, balances your skin's PH levels, and protects, and moisturizes. So a super hero basically. I use Pixi Skintreats Glow Tonic, and I actually read about the cult following of this toner last year, purchased it, and then just didn't use it! I know! I have tried a sampling of a couple other toners since getting into a routine, and this is by far my favorite.

So I had never heard of Essence before learning about the 10-step routine. But it is the very heart of the skincare within the Korean culture, and is considered one of the most important parts.  I use Missha Time Revolution The First Treatment Essence, and with both the toner and the essence, I drop a small amount in my hand and pat evenly over my face instead of wasting product on a cotton pad.
This is when it starts to feel like you're throwing everything on your face at once, but there's a method to the madness. First, I smooth on a retinol cream called Resurface. I got it after seeing it over and over and over again on the beauty counters of celebrities whose skin I admired. It softens and smooths and lightens pigmentation in association with photodamage ... which I have a lot of because of my freckle-inclined skin type. 

Then in my palm I combine a few drops of Biossance Squalane + Vitamin C Rose Oil, and Klairs Freshly Juiced Vitamin C Serum and press it in evenly over my face. I've used Biossance's pure squalane as a moisturizer for years now, and loved it even more after reading a few months ago that my skin idol Hilary Rhoda claimed squalane as one of her secret weapons. Like... have you SEEN her face.
Squalane is incredible and has been a staple in the K-beauty market for a long time. It's is a mega-moisturizing molecule that instantly hydrates while locking in essential moisture. It's the natural moisture we were born with, but as we reach our late 20’s (hi!), our natural production significantly decreases, so adding back in plant-derived squalane helps boost cellular regeneration and heal dry skin. That, compounded with the heavy hit of oil soluble vitamin C ( which is 50 times better than ascorbic acid just by the way) brightens and evens, and protects everything. It's one of my most essential products.

Then, Kiehl's Powerful-Strength, Line-Reducing, Eye-Brightening Concentrate, which is POWERFUL holy crap (only use a little bit) and so so effective. The puffiness and darker skin tone around my eyes has always given me trouble, and I feel like I've already seen such an improvement.

And Kiehl's Midnight Recovery Concentrate, which has had a cult following for a while now, so I had to see what the hype was about. It smells like essential oils, and has an incredible list of ingredients to back it up (including squalane!). In the mornings, I've started getting used to waking up with brighter, plump, super "awake" skin. Totally normal, it's fine.
 The first week or so that I was going through this routine, I got to the moisturizing step and I was like, seriously if I put one more thing on my face, it's going to start dripping. It felt like such an excessive departure from my one-and-done mentality. But, somewhere between a change in mentality and an actual, real, physical change in my skin, when I got to the very last moisturizing step, there was suddenly "room" in my skin for more. The last layer of moisture didn't feel excessive, or like it would drip off my already layered face, it actually absorbed EVERYTHING. And continues to, both morning and night.
These are my holy grail moisturizers.

Because Squalane is such a heavy hitter in the skin department, I love using Biossance 100% Squalane oil in combination with pretty much everything. With my nightly face mask and with daily face creams, as a face prepper before applying make-up and as a full-on replacement for a body moisturizer. Which P.S. if you want to try a sample, they'll actually send you a really good portion right here for $4 shipping!

For a day cream, my husband and I both use and love Kiehl's ultra facial cream, and for night, I am obsessed with the Laneige Water Sleeping Mask, which I first ordered after reading the raving reviews on Amazon and have it loved every since (I'm about out!) It's so light and dries quickly and is not at ALL what you think of when you imagine a "mask".
And that's it people! 
(She says ... thirteen products later ...)

I know everyone's skin is different, and not everyone is going to respond the same to every product and genetics and hormones and all that can really mess with a person and how their skin behaves. But I've loved feeling free to go without make-up, and this routine and what it's done for my skin so far, has kinda changed my life in that way. 
Hopefully it can help a few of you too!
Let me know if you end up trying and loving anything!!

This post was in partnership with Biossance, a company whose products I am obsessed with and use daily.  Like I mentioned before, if you want to try a sample, they'll send you a really good portion right here for only $4 shipping!

my daily uniform two ways

Monday, March 20

My daily look, for some time, has been some sort of variation of a t-shirt and jeans. With keds, or with a well-made sandal or heel, it works. With a top knot, or hoop earrings, it works. With or without a sweater or jacket, it works. I can and will monologue to you about a t-shirt and jeans and the way in which having a small collection of a perfectly-fitted set of each will change your life. In terms of going into your closet in the morning, and spending exactly zero minutes on pairing what with what. This is not news to anyone of course. We know these things about t-shirts and jeans.
And so did I, I suppose, until one day I realized that I was holding onto a pair of jeans because I liked the wash and the cut, but literally never wore them because they started to stretch and sag after a few hours, and I was constantly having to tug them up. So that day, I went through and cleaned out everything that wasn't an absolutely perfect fit, which ended up eliminating a lot of my trend-based items too. At the end of the day, I was left with a super basic closet, but one that fit me really well and felt like me. I highly recommend the experience.  So now, whenever I shop, it's felt super easy to add new items into the mix, because of the all-knowing, all-filtering set of criteria. Does it fit really really well? Can it be easily paired with everything else that I own? And is it a white shirt? (jk I just really like a good white shirt. I have a solid collection going.)
Kork-Ease is celebrating this concept of owning one's signature look with their #originalyou campaign, so with this in mind, lez break some outfits down.

This button-up, for instance ...
... I loved that it felt classic but still relatively cool because of the cropped cut. And I really only wear a mid/high-rise to full on mom jeans anymore, so I knew I could wear it comfortably with whatever.
And this pair of Paige denim which was magically one of the first pairs of flairs I've ever found that didn't immediately require a hem job for my short legs. For a second I did think that the distressing at the bottom was alllllmost hinting too much 2004, but then I decided that it was actually what made them ideal ... takes them a step away from those fancy flair jeans that take themselves too seriously, you know the ones.
And then, these perfectly seventies Kork-Ease Adelphi wedges, which I kid you not, I have not taken off since they came in the mail. I did not know that my other shoes were non-arch supporting until I put these on. Like, I would walk a marathon in them. Speed walk ... you know.
 Shoes: Kork-Ease, Jeans: Paige, Top: Nordstrom Rack, Bag: ASOS, Sunglasses: Target

Here's another version of what you could expect to see me in should we ever run into each other at Chick-Fil-A.
White tees and jeans, white tees and jeans, I could sing you a song about white tees and jeans. Super stretchy jeans to be specific. Taco Bell jeans to be even more specific.
I'm again wearing Kork-Ease here, this time the Amboy sandals, which, ok I lied about the first shoes, because I have also almost exclusively been wearing these since they came in the mail. None of my other shoes exist anymore. My life is about arch support now. Arch support and skin care and daily uniforms, I am aging just reading this.
In all seriousness though, I love settling into myself. Feel less inclined toward experimentation and more inclined towards simplicity and knowing what is and isn't me.
Makes it real easy
Shoes: Kork-Ease, Jeans: Topshop, Top: Nordstrom Rack, Hat: F21, Sunglasses: Old Navy, Choker: ASOS

P.S. I did a little interview over on Kork-Ease blog if you'd like to check it out HERE!

This post was in partnership with Kork-Ease, a footwear brand whose style stays true to its 70's roots and whose sandals could probably also double as slippers. Just saying.
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