House Beautiful

Archive for the 'Wise Words' Category

Thought for the Day


My friend Lauren said this to me today as the caboose to a long pep talk… (you know, the kind you didn’t even know you needed till you got it, but love the person a little more for after they give it to you, because you feel like it just spawned a mini-epiphany).  And all the words in her pep talk were on point, but none so much as the last four: “Luck Rewards the Brave”…..  (I’ll pause for her to drop the mic and for fireworks to go off in your dome like they did in mine).

Karrie and I have been having a lot of sidebar conversations lately about how quickly time is passing (literally, it’s like life is whizzing by) and how to wring the most out of it, because we’re both terrified of ever looking back and realizing that any part of life passed us by while we were – I dunno – busy being biz-ay.  Or going through the motions, which is so easy to do it’s frightening.  Karrie actually just sent emails to a few of her close family members/elders and asked them what advice they would give her for making the most of her life before she wakes up one day and is 60 and is like, “oops.”  (Ahem – I’m currently popping popcorn and awaiting that post with baited breath).  Similarly, I just had a conversation with another old friend while I was in Chicago last month who told me a story that knocked my socks off about a lady she works with – career woman, total bad ass, etc – who always wanted to have a family but got busy doing other things and then woke up one day and realized that that part of life had passed her by…. (GULP).

So as someone who (always) needs to take her own advice, I’m encouraging you guys to also put those 4 little words in your pipe & smoke ’em, too.  Here, I’ll say ’em again for em-phass-is:


Cuz when you think about it, every time you’ve ever taken a leap and done ANYTHING that terrified you or that you initially thought you couldn’t do, did anything really awful come of it?  Or were you glad you took the leap?  Oh here!  I’ll answer for you: I bet GREAT things came from it, and I bet you grew leaps & bounds and learned a lot about yourself in the process.  I took an internal inventory of my last 5 years and realized that two of the things I had originally been terrified of doing (and had previously talked myself out of for years before I took the leap) ended up being some of the best things I could’ve EVER done for myself.  I don’t want to imagine who or where I’d be if I hadn’t done them.  So if you have things you’ve been thinking about doing but keep finding ways to talk yourself out of, or reasons why you will later but just can’t right now… honey.  Do ’em.  And know that the worst POSSIBLE thing that can happen is that you’ll learn something about yourself you didn’t already know, and that you’ll grow in a way you otherwise wouldn’t have been able to if you’d stayed nestled in that cozy place we all like to call our comfort zone.  And if you get scared, make like that cute shaggy-headed kid from “Crazy Stupid Love” and know that all you really need to take the first step is 20 seconds of insane courage.

Thanks again, L-money, for the words of wisdom… that means you too Sabs, Cates & Kar Bear.  Love you girls, and love all of you nuggets reading this post too (Mom, Tina, May & Marge Hobley… bahfjjdkhfjkdahfdhjkah).


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Lake Life Lessons

Hammock | Lake Life Lessons | Covet Living

Happy Monday friends! Right now I’m a good 48 hours into being back from a week in Michigan, at the in-laws’ lake house which is situated on the glorious and aptly named Magician Lake…

Magician Lake | Lake Life Lessons | Covet Living

Each year we go there to blissfully marinate and lie in hammocks and read, backflip off pontoon boats, listen to James Taylor on repeat, and spend time with la familia.

This time, I did something totally new: For seven days I turned off my phone, unplugged from social media, world news, and society as a whole. Which means I turned off the constant stimulation I’m accustomed to.  I was able to just be. It sounds so cliche, I know, but it was absolutely wonderful.  And it’s amazing what the silence around you will create in your mind. I came across this yesterday in a magazine article and loved it:

Lake Life Lessons | Covet Living

It was no easy feat, disengaging from everything, but it allowed me to take in things slowly, and fully; usually my brain is in overdrive and 10 steps ahead, thinking of all the things I have to do, thinking a million things a minute.  But not this past week. And now I’ve got about 2 hours until I’m back at the office, and I’m trying to keep my relaxed mind intact for as long as humanly possible.  And before I’m swept up by work again and noise and news and life, I thought I’d jot down some mini (or not so mini?) epiphanies that came to mind this past week…

1) I am addicted to my phone.  In 1980 John Lennon sang the lyric “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” It’s 2015 and I can’t help but think, “Life is what happens when you’re too busy looking at your phone.” It’s not until I hid it away in my suitcase did I feel a sort of pathetic withdrawal from it; my hand twitched when I couldn’t just feel it, when I couldn’t check to see if anyone had texted me or emailed me. It’s real, this addiction, it’s there, and I don’t help by feeding that addiction each night by keeping it beside my bed.

2) My brain is overly stimulated. Understatement of the century, folks. It’s baaad. And guess what? So is yours. All of ours are. We can’t help it; we’ve got so many pretty, fascinating, compelling things to see and read – gorgeous pix on Insta, tweets, new TV shows, status updates, all of it. To turn all that off for a few days was incredible. I am willing myself to do this more often.

3) It’s been a really long time since I’ve written a letter. Omg, I used to love the excitement of getting a letter from a friend, from my beloved grandma, whoever. Yesterday I sat down and wrote up about 5 cards to people, and it not only made me feel happy, but to imagine my friends and family having a non-bill awaiting them when they reached into the mail put a smile on my face.

4) never call people anymore. Ask yourself: When’s the last time you called someone, maybe an old friend, and had a really nice, long conversation with them? Somehow my “catching up” with friends and relatives has devolved into text messages, getting the latest updates on life thru 35-word text messages. How impersonal, and sad when you think about it.  Do I really wanna rely on my phone to connect with the people I love?  So one day last week, in a span of a three hour drive from my in-laws’ to my parents’, I called 4-5 friends and caught a couple whose voices I hadn’t heard in some time… and I loved it. I’ll be doing that wayyyy more often, I promise.

5) I love to read. It is magical. I read three books in one week, which is hilar since I usually read about 10 pages before bed and then crash. It reawakened in me a feverish love of books I’ve had since being a lil’ kid. Instead of Pinning on a Sunday afternoon, I wanna lie on the patio and lose myself in a good read more often…

Bonus: Shark Week is awesome. No, seriously, did you guys watch this at all last week? Because I watched about 186 hours of it. And oh yeah, I’m pretty sure I’m never going to get into the ocean ever again, k, cool.

Fireworks | Lake Life Lessons | Covet Living

Soooo that’s it for now, just some Monday musings from yours truly.  Time to put my big girl pants on and re-enter society, I suppose. But for all of you reading this and feeling like you’re going 1,000 mph and are unable to slow down, do yourselves a favor.  Set down the phone.  Hide it, in fact. For hours. Except, of course, if you need it to call someone you love. Have a lovely summer day, everyone!


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