House Beautiful

8 Things To Entertain Yourself With During Lockdown

ISN’T THAT THE TRUTH?  GRACIOUS!  Um, ok – so, we are where we are.  What felt like semi-normalcy about a week ago has since escalated to utter insanity and uncertainty, to a zombie apocalypse degree.  The best advice I’ve heard thus far is this:

Even if you don’t have symptoms, self-quarantine and distance yourself socially as if you DO have it, so as not to perpetuate the spread of this thing.”

And we’ve probably all seen this but it’s about all you need to see to get the picture – video version of it here:

Plus Gaga said basically the same thing and when she talks, I listen.

This is going to be tough on and impact EVERYONE for a million different reasons… but let’s stick together, shall we?  Cuz WE ARE ALL IN IT.  Sales people can’t go out and sell.  Hospitality has to be losing their a$$.  People who work in sports stadiums have no stadiums to tend to.  Health care workers are going to be worked to the bone.  People like grocery store checkout folks and UPS drivers are completely exposed to the virus because they don’t really have the option to self-quarantine.  How do people who DO still have to go to work care for their children, whose schools are closed for at least the next few weeks?  Chris is a medical sales rep and since the surgeon general just advised that all elective surgeries be halted for the time being, he’s basically out of work for a month.  There’s no one this thing isn’t touching.  Quel mess!

And, the smallest potatoes (seriously) but: we’re going to have to reschedule our April 4th destination wedding which has taken a solid year to orchestrate…it’s a stinker and a pain in the arse and it’s disappointing – but really, no bigs… There is absolutely nothing we can do about it and we certainly can’t afford to put anyone at peril.  Plus… this way in the Summer we’ll all have tans, I guess?? (#silverlining).  And it’ll be plug & play.  Luckily, all of our vendors are AMAZING and have graciously agreed to transfer our deposits to a future date – for which I have a few on hold.  The only thing that hasn’t been so easy to swallow is THIS situation, which I’m sure anyone & everyone with a vacation rental coming up is also dealing with, to some degree:

ANYHOW.  Here we all are – sequestered in our individual casas, twiddling our thumbs and wondering if we have enough food to last us for the next few weeks.  Whatchagonnado????  Welp, those of us who are fortunate enough to be able to work from home, we can work from home.  And I have a LOT of work catch up to do.  But outside of that – I can think of a few things:

1. VIRTUAL MUSEUM TOURS (here): Hey. Let’s be honest – most of us are glued to social media to a brain-melting degree and could all use a little cultural timeout.  Includes some of my favorites like the Musée D’Orsay in Paris, the Uffizi Gallery in Firenze, and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.

2. (FREE!) COREPOWER YOGA CLASSES ONLINE (here): HPF isn’t quite the same when it’s not 105 degrees, but hey.  I’ll take what I can get!  Safer than going to the gym and touching all the sweaty things with cooties.

3. NETFLIX & CHILL.  Here’s what’s on my watchlist:

Homeland Season 8 – GASP!  Literally one of the most gripping shows on television.


Super interested to watch this.  I’ve always been pretty lukewarm on Hillary, but I do think she’s smart as a whip and I certainly respect her.


Um, this is our friend Steph Turner!  She wrote, directed AND starred in Justine.  You gotta be a talented mofo to do that.  Cannot wait to watch.


And if you haven’t binged any these below yet, you’re in for a treat:




4. PAINT SOMETHING, PICASSO!  Or whatever crafty venture tickles your pickle and takes your eyes away from a TV or computer or iPhone screen for awhile.  I have canvases & oil paint in a drawer that I bought almost 2 years ago that I haven’t even opened yet.  And a cross stitch kit so I can stitch out one of those: “Please don’t do cocaine in the bathroom” things and hang it on the wall.

Or, maybe this one would be more appropriate this week:

5. GO OUTSIDE & PLAY.  We live in a place with tons of open space so we’re super lucky, but surely even a walk + some fresh air is good for the soul, right?  Just don’t hug or like, make out with any passersby.

6. SPRING CLEAN!  I mean… what if we all come out of this thing with closets that look like Athena Calderone’s???

Anuschka Rees’ Closet Detox Cheat Sheet is a good place to start.  If I can get Chris to do this with me it’ll be like the 8th wonder of the world.  Pretty sure he is holding on for dear life to drawers-full of unmatched socks from high school.

Honestly… I am also seriously considering going through my iPhone pics (all 30,000 of them – #brainexplosion) and deleting the goofs and filing the others into folders if need be.  Sounds about as fun as watching paint dry but would feel so cleansing.

7. DO YOURSELF A LITTLE SPA DAY. Got Epsom salts, a nail file and some nail polish?  Treat yo self!  My dome is currently marinating in Olaplex and I’m about to do a deep soak in a lavender epsom salt bath.  If you soak to prune-y perfection, you can give yourself a scrub with my favorite $3 exfoliant – Domino Granulated Sugar – and then slather on some coconut oil.  You’re welcome.

8. GET INSPIRED BY VINTAGE COVET LIVING POSTS!  haaaaaaaaaaa.  Wait I’m actually not kidding.  I do a favorite things-esque post almost seasonally (which is filed under “Mishmashes & Musings“) – compilations of the most beautiful things on earth I’ve seen.  I go back and troll them often and am always re-inspired.  Have at it!  I’m long overdue so maybe I’ll write a new one this week.

What else??  What did I miss?  What are you guys doing this week to be productive (or not productive) and entertain yourselves?

Everybody stay safe and hang in there.  Sh%* is nuts, but maybe we try to think of it as a way to remember what’s really important… to pare down, reconnect with your family, and reconnect with yourself.  Good juju like that.



Fave Beauty Finds!

Breaking down my faves today, because I can’t mentally sift through the “Top 100 Beauty Products”-type of spreads in magazines, and also because I know so much of that content is in there because X magazine has a good working relationship with Y skincare company… same with some of the blogs I troll for things like this – they’re also often sponsored content (which means the makers of the products pay a fee to have the bloggers include their jazz in a post), so I never know if people have actually used and would recommend them, or if someone just paid them to say they love em. The truth is, Karrie & I are too lazy aka busy to finagle sponsorships & such – and also, we’re both product snobs.  So these picks are my legit tried & true, can’t-live-without-em beauty faves.  Hope some of them work for you too!

1 – ARCONA WINE OIL, $58.  Literally the only thing that gets my face through a Colorado winter. Smells like cloves, feels like your skin just drank a gallon of water as soon as you put it on.  I used to use Arcona products exclusively, but have since switcheroo’d my daily regime over to R+F.

2 – RODAN + FIELDS REDEFINE REGIMEN, $208.  I’ve been a happy Arcona customer for years, but my beloved cousin Jill (also a R+F rep) gave me this regimen as a wedding shower gift, so I gave it a whirl.

The first day I was like: “Neat! It smells like clean laundry and feels nice on my face. Who knows if it does anything?” – but I took a before + after photo and TWO WEEKS LATER the texture and tone of my skin was completely different.  And I (thought) I had good skin before.  Consider me converted.

PS: these pics are NOT becoming b/c I obviously have no makeup on and took them (basically while I was still asleep and stuck my face in the natural sunlight), but LOOK AT THE DIFFERENCE.  Two weeks, people. if you’re interested in trying R+F, give my cousin/more-like-a-sister, Jill, a holler: – …sidenote, see #6 for a good eyebrow-plumper-upper.

3 – DOMINO SUGAR, $2.50.  Cheapest & best exfoliant on the market, IMO.  Definitely messy & sticky if you don’t rinse out the tub or shower after you’re done, but if you have a few extra minutes in the shower every other day to give yourself a nice scrub with a handful of this + body oil, your skin will literally feel like butter.  Actual sweet cream, melted butter.  You do have to be thorough – I do a heaping handful of sugar for each limb – go slowly, in a circular motion, and polish your crusty winter skin to perfection.  The important thing about exfoliating is that you gotsta do it if you want your lotion / moisturizer to soak in.  Cuz it can’t penetrate a layer of scales on its own.

4 – NYX Golden Olive Eyeliner, $7.78.  One of those things I randomly picked up at a Walgreens 10 years ago or so.  It’s the perfect shade, imo – kind of charcoal-y but with a warm brown/green tint.  Goes on nice & smooth, and blends easily.

5 – Goe Oil, $49.  Does the same thing for my hands in the Winter or in dry climates as Wine Oil does for my face.  Spendy but worth every penny.  Also available at Anthro.

6 – Lise Watier Volumizing Eyebrow Fiber Gel, $23.  Remember the time I went bananas with a pair of tweezers when I was 15 and then my eyebrows LITERALLY NEVER GREW BACK?  I mean seriously.  Of all the things we ladies *cough* pluck, tweeze & wax, this is the one thing that doesn’t come back?  It’s sadly a doodle that can’t be undid.  Anyway – since I’ll clearly never have my old Brooke Shields brows from the 90’s back, I use this stuff to plump them up.  I’ve tried lots of others – including NARS – but none are as good as this guy.  The makeup artist from the Bravo show I did earlier this year (What up, Mario!) turned me onto it.  Next-best thing to Microblading.

7 – Naked Eyeshadow Palette by Urban Decay, $27.  Karrie turned me onto this a year or so ago and it’s the only eyeshadow palette I’ll ever need.  Retails for $54 on some other sites so this is a bargain.

8 – Estée Lauder “Rich Red” Lipstick, $35+.  My bad because when I went to look this up, I just realized it’s been discontinued.  SACRE BLEU!  It’s still available from a few sellers on eBay though.  PS this is what I wore on Thanksgiving this year.  It goes on like velvet.

I also love Boots No. 7 “Love Red,” which has a nice blue undertone, but it’s also super elusive.  You’re welcome for absolutely nothing on this one!

9 – Glo Lip Balm, $16.  One of my clients sent me this in a Christmas Gift a few years ago and I’ve never gone back.  Instant relief the second you put it on, and I love the chunky size – means it’s far less likely to get lost in the bottom of my bag.

10 – Dazzle Dry Nail Color, $18.  There’s about 1 whole mani-pedi gal in Crested Butte, and she’s the one who turned me onto this.  Listen, I love a gel mani as much as the next girl, but what I don’t love is how after 2 rounds of gel, if I take it off, my fingernails are so paper thin that they actually bend backwards when I’m washing my hair in the shower.  Ouch.  Dazzle Dry isn’t gel, but it’s just about as tough.  My color stayed on for ALMOST TWO WEEKS last time I had it done.  Hardly any nail salons carry it, but you can put your zip code in and check on Dazzle Dry’s website, or just grab a bottle and DIY at home or hand it to your nail tech to use during your next mani.

11 – Bionic Powerlight Blow Dryer, $99.  Better than the Dyson blow dryer, and for about 1/4 of the price.  Best hair dryer I’ve ever had.

12 – Kérastase L’Huile Originale, $31.99.  Delightful, subtle scent, and one of the only things I’ve ever found that tames my frizz without putting a damper on my hair’s body.

Other than (actual products), I will say the best my hair ever looks is when I cut back on heat styling (trying to limit myself to 1x/week), and the best my skin EVER looks is when I cut gluten, dairy & alcohol and drink tons of water.

What are your faves??