I asked you guys on Instagram to hit me with all the questions! So many came through that I won’t be able to answer all of them, but let’s just jump in and see how
I asked you guys on Instagram to hit me with all the questions! So many came through that I won’t be able to answer all of them, but let’s just jump in and see how far we get…
“What do you use to curl your hair and how do you do it?”
I use a GHD 1″ Classic Curl. I’ve used all sorts of wands and different sizes of curling irons, but this is the one that I prefer. I started using it one day when I saw that Julia Engel uses it and I think she has the most beautiful hair ever, so I was sold. There really is something to this iron—it’s amazing. Since it’s smaller, it allows me to put more hair in the barrel to create a loose wave. (If I put the same amount of hair around a larger barrel, it would not give enough of a wavy look, but would look more straight, if that makes sense.) I promise promise to show y’all how I do it soon. There’s not much to it and it takes me less than 5 minutes. But I swear the trick is in the curling iron.
“How do you organize all of your paper—bills, coupons, important documents, mail, etc.?”
I have a closet that I like to call my “office.” The reason I call it that is because it sits right next to our playroom, which 100% was going to be my office when we moved in. Then all the toys took over and I got kicked out… and into a closet.
ANYWAY! The office has lots of shelves in it. On one shelf, I have a tray and any mail that comes in that is somewhat important in one way or another, I put it there in the tray. It’s out of sight, but remains top of mind because I see it at eye level whenever I open the closet. From there, about once a week I’ll sort through everything into an organizer drawer cabinet, which also lives in my “office” closet. It has lots of drawers and really helps me keep everything organized. Business receipts go in one drawer, family documents go in another (things that aren’t important enough to go in a safe, like our pest control contract and our Aquarium annual passes, etc). Another drawer is for coupons, like the 25 Bed Bath & Beyond ones we have and some for diapers, etc. You get the idea. Everything has a drawer! I try to keep ALL office supplies in this same closet so that there’s never any question where anything is when you need some ribbon to wrap a present or a hole puncher.
“Favorite brand of luggage?”
I use Calpak. It’s not the lightest ever, but I like how sleek it is and it’s so pretty. I also have a Delsey Paris rolling carry-on, which I love because the pockets are really well thought out and it’s lightweight. I actually love the entire Delsey line and would love to have more pieces.
“Do you use a self tanner? Which one?”
I was asked this a whole lot. I naturally have kind of olive toned skin, so it appears darker. Especially my legs for some odd reason—they are always darker than the rest of my body! So for that reason and because I’m kind of lazy these days, I don’t use a self tanner often. But when I do, I always always use the St. Tropez Express Tan.
I love it because you only have to leave it on for 1-3 hours. So you can put it on when you get home from work and then wash it off before bed! Getting in a bed with self tanner on just creeps me out, haha.
It works best if you exfoliate beforehand, but I don’t always. Just be sure to use an applicator mitt so that your hands don’t end up looking crazy! I even use this on my face, but I always put moisturizer on after to make sure it’s even.
“What paint color do you have on your walls?”
We have Agreeable Gray by Sherwin Williams painted throughout the house, but we are slowly painting some of the rooms our custom paint color we had all throughout our last home. It’s just so good (the perfect almost white, warm gray) and I’ve missed it!! It’s extremely similar to Agreeable Gray, but just lighter with a smidge more of a cool tone.
“What does Brandon do for a living?”
He’s a civil engineer. He does roadway design and storm drainage design for infrastructure projects.
“Who highlights your hair? How do you keep it “cool” toned?”
If you’re in Charleston, I highly recommend Nicole at Element 28 Salon in Mount Pleasant. She has done my hair exclusively for almost 9 years. I have a very ashy toned darker root, so the blonde highlights look more “icey” in contrast to my natural color. Also, I ask for a LOT of very thin highlights so that it always looks blended and soft—never streaky. To maintain, I use AMIKA Bust Your Brass Shampoo to take out any brassiness. I use this about 2x per week, or as needed. Not only is this the best purple shampoo I’ve used, but it also has done wonders for the health of my hair! It’s so much stronger and shiny now.
“How do you have a toddler and light colored furniture? What are your tricks for keeping stains off of it?”
Got this one a lot too. The main thing… our sofas have washable slipcovers on them! We wash them about once per month and they always look just as good when we put them back on. They are from the Cindy Crawford Beachside collection at Rooms to Go. The cost was a fraction compared to sofas with an identical look. They’re incredibly comfortable and durable.
I honestly can’t imagine not having washable slipcovers with a toddler—even if we had a sofa that was dark brown, I think I would still be on pins and needles if it couldn’t essentially be thrown in the washing machine. I mean, Watson comes running into the living room with blueberry juice running down his face and then he catapults himself on the sofa head first! It makes me cringe a little, but I know it will wash right out. When we do get stains on ours in between washings (like, every single day), I use The Laundress Stain Solution to easily dab out the stain.
Our dining room chairs are white as well, but they are also removable slipcovers and we honestly don’t eat at that table… ever. Other than that, there’s really nothing else white other than some pillows, which are also washable.
“Advice for a bride with 4 months to go before her wedding?”
Wow, what an amazing time of your life. Honestly, I wish I could do it all again! Of course people are telling you already to soak it all up and enjoy every moment, but I’d be wrong if I didn’t say that too. So please do! Otherwise, here are a few random thoughts.
“What kind of deodorant do you use?”
LAVANILA in the Vanilla Lavender scent. It smells so good and is completely healthy.
“What’s in your Amazon cart right now?”
“Did you have a different job before blogging?”
Yes, I worked in major gifts and event planning for the Medical University of South Carolina Children’s Hospital. That was my first job out of college. I’m also a Realtor, although that has slowed down quite a bit since having two babies. I love it though!
“How did you lose the baby weight? How do you stay in shape?”
First of all, I really am not in shape, but thank you… clothes hide it well! But I did get this question a lot, so here’s what I attribute it to. Honestly, I just move around ALL DAY. Our house is super tall, so I’ve got two sets of stairs I’m going up and down constantly. I really want to get into a strict workout routine, but it’s really hard because we live about 30 minutes away from my gym and it’s hard to fit it in with having two small children—one that hates the gym nursery. I’ve been going about 1-2x per week the past few weeks, but that’s really just to walk on the treadmill, which is more of an emotional escape than anything!
I did drop the baby weight pretty fast because I didn’t gain too much. I gained 50lb with Watson and only 24lb with Rosie. (Which I amount to the fact that I was sedentary while pregnant with Watson and I couldn’t be that way when I was expecting Rosie because I had Watson to run after! And likewise, I didn’t have the time to sit around eating cookies. Haha!) When I got home from the hospital after having Rosie, I had lost 11lb. Then, 9 days later, I had dropped another 10lb. It was crazy… I guess it was just water weight. Then I lost a few pounds when I tried intermittent fasting last month, which is basically where I would eat dinner at 8:30pm and then not eat again until about 11:30am the next morning. It was super easy… and honestly, the main reason I did it was because I was so busy taking care of two littles in the morning that I’d forget to eat right away anyway! But look at all the health benefits!
I’d really like to lose about five more pounds to be totally happy. Just being honest. I’ll get there, but I put zero pressure on myself to do it. It may happen over the course of the summer, it may happen next year, and it may not happen ever. And that’s ok. I used to be so hard on myself and I just don’t do that anymore. I also am not a dieter at all. I will adjust portion size, but I always give in to the fries and the dessert. Life is too short not to, right?
“Will you go to houses to help with interior design? I’m local.”
I’ve had this question come up a few times recently, which is incredibly flattering. I haven’t really thought about it, but I’m not shutting the idea out! In the meantime, if anyone wants to send over a photo of their room and ideas about what they are wanting, I’d be happy to try to squeeze in time to make an online mood board just for fun. That could make a good blog post to share!
“How did you become an “influencer?” Any tips?”
It has been a long process. I started this blog when I was a senior in college as a creative outlet and something to pass the time. I was so shocked when I got my first follower. I even remember her name—”Politics & Pearls,” are you out there? haha! Back then, people didn’t blog as a job. Or maybe they did, but if so, I had no idea about that side of blogging. Fast forward to 7 years later and blogging has become a career for me, which I’m so incredibly grateful for. But it definitely didn’t happen overnight, that’s for sure.
I think the most important tips I can share for new bloggers is to be consistent with your content, stay active on social media, engage with other bloggers that you can turn to for support, and say “yes” to every event, trip, and gathering you can! If you’re doing fun things, you’ll have fun content to share. Also, another tip …Not to be a downer, but just don’t do it unless you’re truly passionate and excited about it. As in, don’t get started with it solely as a way to make money because you’ll burn out fast. Blogging may seem like a glamorous, easy job, but there’s so much to it behind the scenes that other people don’t see. Like paperwork, sourcing and ordering items, photography shoots, countless hours of planning, writing content, contracts, bookkeeping, editing… the list goes on. But if you do it because you like it, then none of that will seem like work. Even when you’re up at 1:30am writing a blog post like I am now. 🙂
“Do you get Botox?”
I have before and I absolutely loved it. I don’t know how many units, but it was a small amount just in the lines on my forehead. I could still move my forehead just fine, but it kept those deep forehead lines from being so creased, which was awesome. Not going to lie, the first thing I will do after I finish nursing Rosie is make an appointment to get it again! It definitely made me look more fresh-faced.