House Beautiful

Tag Archive for 'marriage'

2014, in all its glory.

Big Sur

2014 was a PRETTY big year.  So before we cheers to 2015 tonight (clink!), we wanted to take a look back at some of the best posts of 2014, and all things bitter and sweet that shaped us…  for the betta.

1. ON LOVE:  Karrie’s really real talk on marriage and everything learned – so far – on the subject.  We will ALWAYS try and be truthful, honest, and sometimes – to the chagrin of those closest to us (schorray, Teem!) – pretty darn candid.  Which brings us to…

Karrie & Tim | Covet Living

2. ON LOSS:  Steph’s raw and heartbreaking post – penned in the throes of a painful split – left our readers in a puddle.  The love that had joyfully radiated through the internet and the subsequent loss of it were equally palpable.  But how ‘bout that silver lining?!!  …the shift to a more fulfilling career in a warmer place, the goodness of so many loved ones and strangers, and the profound lessons learned… and learned a-gain at the end of 2014, just for good measure.  Many of which can be summed up by Mark Manson’s Love is not enough.  No regrets though – not a one.

I Loved, I Lost | Covet Living

3.  CALIFORNIA DREAMIN:  Once bi-coastal bloggers & besties, Steph’s cross-country move put us just down the street from each other (Santa Monica à San Diego)…  which means regular trips to the Rose Bowl Flea Market (stay tuned for the before & after of Karrie’s breakfast nook we’re currently revamping!), a lot of hilarity, and a lot of trips to Casa Machado.

Karrie and Steph, Encinitas | Covet Living

Southern Cali | Covet Living

It also means Tim wants to punch himself in the face on a regular basis.

Teem | Covet Living

4. ALL IN THE FAMILY:  Our hearts literally broke this Spring when we said goodbye to Steph’s beloved Grandpa, Bud…  a man who once said: “I never understood the point of fake boobs.  Anything you can’t fit in your mouth is a waste of time.”  What a stud.

BUD collage

Then they burst at the seams later in 2014 with the addition of one of the cutest, most angelic things to grace us with her presence – Karrie’s niece, Willow – a cooing little nugget we wanna eat up!  (Look at that FACE!)

Willow | Covet Living

Rounding out the fam-jam:  Steph moved into a bachelor pad with Karrie’s he-cousin + another young lad.  She affectionately refers to it as “El Frat House” and some days, wakes up to the sounds of thighs slapping and the sights of a sea of empty beer cans.  LAWD.  But to their credit, those 2 hooligans make for protective pseudo brothers, and the whole shenanigan makes for some amazing stories.

5. FASHION ROUND-UPS:  Look no further than our fashion round-ups {2014 Oscars | 2014 SAG Awards} to get a sense of the evil texts we volley to each other during awards shows (in sweatpants).  Who do we think we are – Anna Wintour + OP?  Nah…  just two hens cluckin’ about all things fashion related.  And when we’re not weighing in on stars’ fashion triumphs & mishaps, posts like this inspire us to keep our wardrobes effortlessly cool.  And fearless.

Camilla and Matthew | Covet Living

Jason Bateman | Covet Living

6. BACHELOR(ETTE) ROUND-UPS:  Speaking of being perched up in the judge’s chair…  Most Tuesday mornings, Steph shares her candid, kooky and controversial belly-laughing commentary from Monday night’s Bachelor episodes.

Cody and Mad Libs | Covet Living Bachelorette Commentary

Opera Singer on Bachelorette | Covet Living

Operation Doctor candidate | Covet Living And we can’t WAIT for Farmer Ted’s season – otherwise known here on Covet Living as the “Panty Dropper” – to start on January 5th!

Chris Soules Farmer Ted | Covet Living 7. ON TV:  Someday, we’ll tell you about the time Steph was in a close overtime thriller to be one of gals vying for Farmer Ted’s heart.  As for Karrie (a reality TV producer by day), this year we toasted not one but two of her MAJOR hit shows!  The pint-sized drama on Little Women: LA left our jaws on the floor, and the modern-day arranged marriage / social experiment that is Married at First Sight  had everyone from the ladies on The View to the check-out ladies at your local grocery store talking about it.  Look for even crazier TV shows to come from Karrie in 2015.

MAFS | Covet Living

8. GLOBETROTTING:  With girls’ trips to Palm Springs and Malibu, weddings in Big Sur, wine country getaways and jaunts across the pond to the South of France, we took in some of the most gorgeous places in the world.

Travel | Covet Living

9. HEALTHY BODY:  We both embraced dropping gluten and picking up yoga in a major way, and we feel a MILLION times better for it. And big props to Amy P at Corepower Yoga in San Diego for kicking our ever-loving butts in the happiest and most Namaste of ways.

Post-Corepower Yoga | Covet Living

Check out über healthy & delicious recipes for zoodles + meatballs, autumn ingredient salads, and lazy weekend brunches if you missed ‘em… and this post for our workout playlist.

Autumn Ingredient Salad | Covet Living

10. HEALTHY MIND: Though most of us love to read, we’re often so busy that we (whoops) forget.  And then when we remember, we don’t know what’s out there worth reading.  Well.  Leave it to Karrie to dole out good suggestions, always.

Books to Read, Covet Living

11. HEALTHY SPIRIT:  Many-a-Mondays, we shared words of wisdom like this & that… and maybe the most notable of all this year, THIS’UN.  Because if there is ONE thing we do our best to practice, it’s finding the joy (and hilarity) in everything, every. *single*. day… and being kind to people… and taking the leaps that scare you to death (“…because one day, there won’t be any more time to do the things you want to do.  Do them now.”)  Finding the good in all things – even the things that absolutely suck.  The entire reason we started this blog almost 5 years ago was to share with you guys that spirit for life and for all the things we love.  We love you to the moon and back for staying with us all this time.  And if you’re new – wassup!  Sit down.  Have a cocktail.  Stick arrooouuund.


Happy 2015 to you all!!!  And yo…don’t forget to take an Uber.


Steph & Karrie


10 Things I’ve Learned About Marriage

{What up, handsome?!}

I’m gonna let you in on a little secret.  When I got engaged, I had an adverse physical reaction.  No, really.  I got a rash that started at my engagement ring and slowly crept up my left arm.  It was like a scene straight out of SATC.  My nervousness at the thought of going from a Beyonce-level independent young woman to spending the rest of my life with someone literally physically manifested itself in me. But unlike Carrie, this Karrie knew a wonderful, kind, loving guy when I saw him. I knew he was the one for me, but still… the unknown that is marriage freaked me the EFF out.

Well.  Fast forward four years.  Tim and I’ve been hitched for 2 1/2 years (wedding pix here, thank you) and I can say with 100% certainty that it’s getting easier and better as we go along.  But daaaaaamn Gina, marriage is… wait for it… oh yes, W-O-R-K.  If you’re one of those people who say it isn’t, I seriously know you’re full of it, respectfully.  And there are a lot of people out there who like to act like it ain’t tough.  But it is.  But when I got hitched, I didn’t have a ton of married friends, so no one told me this.  No one told me over a glass of wine with a tell-it-like-it-is Dr. Phil-type smirk and said, “It is hard sometimes, so buckle your seatbelt and get ready.”  I had to figure that out on my own.  So with that said, I wanted to jot down some of the things I’VE learned over the past 2.5 years – and keep in mind a) we do NOT have kids yet, and b) we’ve been married just 2.5 years.  Here goes: 10 things I’m learning as I ride this wave called marriage with my man, my sweet, ornery Midwestern man:

1. You’re going to bring some baggage into the relationship. Listen, unless you’re a Duggar and getting married at 17, you’re going to have some accumulated life experience that rears its ugly little head into your marriage occasionally.  The trick is trying to internally acknowledge when your past is having an adverse effect on how you look at and react to what’s going on now.

2. There are going to be times when you will really not like each other. And that’s ok!  Your marriage, like your feelings for each other, is going to be an up and down wave. Thank perspective, thank the ability to look back and look over my marriage, but now I can see that it is a constant flowing wave, up, down, up, down. Low points caused by blowouts caused by tempers and miscommunication and general immaturity; to high points (pretty much right after the low points) where we’re happy and I couldn’t feel more in love.  Knowing it’s n-o-r-m-a-l and part of life has made me a lot more calm when we are at a low point.

3. Going to bed mad is ok. In fact, going to bed in separate beds is just fine too. As I write this I’m lying in my guest room bed ’cause I’m annoyed with my hubby and I don’t feel like sharing the same bed as him.  Yeah I said it.  But so what?  We’re gonna have a convo eventually, we’ll iron it out (when I feel like talking to him), and we’ll move on.  Which leads me to..

4. Forgive, forgive, forgive. Don’t hold on.  As hard as it is, don’t hold a grudge. Neither of you.  Grudges are like greasy stains on the soul which you need to get out as soon as you can.  If you don’t, they’ll stay there, and get bigger and fester until one day you explode, and you don’t want that.  Get it out now; air your grievances. Hopefully you married a man who listens and allows you to say what’s on your mind. Which leads me to…

{Our first date-ish. San Diego 11/5/8.  PS: I just realized we got married exactly three years to the day}

5. Say what’s on your mind. Easy for some, very hard for many (I can’t believe I’m writing this – but myself included).  I don’t know about you, but sometimes I tend to want to say something but stop myself because I don’t want to be a nag or too emotional or whatever. I’ll never forget when our therapist told me I deserve to say what comes to mind because I’m an equal part of the relationship, and my thoughts are as valid as his.  She said Get it out!  Don’t play the silent partner because you feel badly about speaking up.  Which leads me to…

6. Therapy is your friend. We first went for pre-marital counseling (which I highly, highly, highly recommend) and sporadically go even now.  My philosophy is – we work out the muscles in our bodies – why not work out our brains and our hearts? Therapy has opened up our minds to alternative ways to look at things and issues, and it’s been incredibly healthy.

7. Make time for each other. This means different things for different couples.  For me it means prying my pale hands off my phone and other electronic devices to spend uninterrupted time focusing on whatever it is I’m doing with my husband – whether it’s watching Real Housewives (*cough, not that he’d enjoy that show) or taking a walk around the neighborhood.  If I’m present, he can pick up on that, and it goes a very, very long way.

8. Remember that you both have friends for a reason. He is not your girlfriend. This means as much as he is a good listener, he can not give you the same kind of attention and feedback as your girls, nor should he be expected to.  This one took me a little while to realize before the lightbulb went off.

9. Try not to be the couple who bicker. And then fail.  Whoops.  My neighbor once told me a story.  In the middle of a party at their place, he and his wife got into a super heated convo in front of everyone.  Just as you could cut the tension with a knife, his friend spoke up and said “Listen everyone, I know you’re probably feeling awkward and not knowing what to do.  But know this: X and X are going to be married a long time, because they get everything out then and there, and then they move on.”  I’m not suggesting you throw knives at each other in front of others War Of The Roses-style, but… ya know.

{One of our first dates.  La Jolla, San Diego 11/8/08}

10. Don’t compare your marriage or your man to others’. You know that super extroverted couple who are always the life of the party?  Well he has major Peter Pan syndrome and she’s insecure. The hot guy my friend was with?  Mom issues. Big ones.  Repeat after me: There is no perfect guy, there is no perfect relationship, and there is no perfect marriage.  Every couple has their dark days, their struggles. As hard as it is, don’t compare.  Don’t do it.


So that’s what I got, folks.  I’m just a lucky girl who found my Jewel of the Nile: A boy with a huge heart, arms always open and ready to embrace me in the best hug ever, a boy who loves me for exactly who I am, and who has just about the cutest smile this side of the Mississippi.  I’m just as in love with him the day we married, if not more.  Ok.  Guest bedroom status is over starting tomorrow.

Got any advice yourself?  Would love to hear.  Agree or disagree with anything?  Talk to me, people!