simple shui | the gift well guide

hello, sugar plums + happy december!

’tis the season of packages tied up with string, right? and because i LOVE the thrill of merry-making + joy-riding, i have a few suggestions that are sure to feel good giving.

when it comes to gifting with peace of mind and plenty of purpose, keep yours in one of these sweet spots – Edibles, Education, Experience, Expendables, and Entertainment – and your gift is forever safe from becoming forgotten, recycled, or banished to the clutter pile!

so, let’s get your gifting on and start with EDIBLES-ish:

it takes some serious WOW to WOO me, but once i fall, i am loyal for life. and these showstoppers are always within reach around here because they are just.so.good.

  • Olive Oil + Balsamic Vinegar – since my trip to Santa Fe a few years ago, i can’t get enough of how slurp worthy this stuff is. i inhaled my fair share of it in the store, so trust me: you can’t go wrong with any pairing. however, if the choices are too overwhelming, give them a call and you’ll get a personalized recommendation!
  • Pecan Lodge BBQ sauce – this place is Don Henley’s favorite, just so y’know. also, justin + diane are good friends of mine, and their genius is simply beyond words. they never disappoint + this stuff won’t either.
  • Golden Boy Pizza Sauce – we pizza here every Friday night, and this stuff is quickly becoming legendary.
  • Syrup – a steady + ready staple in our repertoire!
  • Sea Salt because it works anywhere – a little on the salad, a sprinkle on hot bread, a dash on chocolate ice cream, a scoop in the bath, a quick toss here and there around the house, a line at the doorstep…basically, this is EVERYTHING!

also.

i LOVE a soup pot because it suggests nourishment, comfort, and company. it caters well to hospitality always + in all ways – it pulls us into the kitchen to stoke our money maker (the oven!). and if you’re going to put a pot o’delish on, invite a few friends to break bread with you, and you’ll stir up good vibes in your space. it’s a gift-win-win!

a spot of warm is always a favorite, so consider a teapot. and when i say it is the gift that keeps on giving, hear this: moving water represents prosperity, so when you put water on to boil, you’re speaking the language of abundance. holla at the dollah!

a water pitcher is both utilitarian and an act of self-expression. whether used as a vase for fresh blooms; a utensil holder; or a water carafe during meals, it is an unfussy way to instill beauty – a scrumptious life force – in a home. and it really is such an unexpected gift! my suggestion? bring it filled with greenery + a pop of holiday color, and it becomes 2 gifts in 1, smartie!

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anything that suggests EDUCATION – like stacks of books – leaves me singing fa-la-la-la-la-la-la-LOVE! here are a few high-voltage reads that won’t disappoint.

for that boss lady (or laddie) ready to slay 2018, how about Year of Yes, Why Not Me?, You are a Badass at Making Money, and Yes Please.

for those who love being romanced by gorgeous words and hypnotic writing, Shadow of the Wind, The House of the Spirits, The Sun and Her Flowers, and Heart Talk.

for the memoir junkie (which i am all the days of my life!), The Journal of Best Practices, You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me, Born to Run, I’m Judging You, Something to Declare, and Swimming With Elephants.

for someone who insists on a book that refuses to be put down, Kindred, The Historian, Tell the Wolves I’m Home, Tiny Beautiful Things, and The Book Thief.

for that darling of a designer, how about Absolutely Beautiful Things, The Things That Matter, Morning Noon Night, and The New Bohemians Handbook?

and for someone wanting a little shui in her life (wink, wink), my simple shui workbooks…naturally!

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as for EXPERIENCE, i can’t even begin to tell you how much i <HEART> these women! each of these foxy fresh ladies has an irrefutable presence + smoking confidence, so you won’t go wrong getting in their world. and if you ever feel those self-doubts getting too much real estate, these are the women whose torches never dim so let them light yours!

kristen finch – i call her little Bu(ddha) because she is the steadiest hand in the game of LIFE. if you (or a lovie) need an encouraging shove into really showing up + taking up all the space, 8 days a week she is forever your girl.

jenn lederer is equal parts everygirl’s girlfriend + unapologetic coach + breakthrough whisperer – basically, a triple scoop treat!

flora bowley, pixie lighthorse, susannah conway: i am a front row fangirl of these women + the beauty they bring to the table – whether it is a book; an e-course; or their social media musings, their inspiration seduces and satiates the soul.

the tarot lady is a badass boss babe who over-delivers the goods in her forecasts (if you can get one!). and her coloring books are creative catnip for tarot lovah-lovahs!

the voluptuous witch – holy smokes, i LOVE this woman! she is an astrologer + activist + straight up truth teller who teaches me something new every single day. she is brilliant at calling out the excess (fear) so we can get into the life (love) we all deserve.

i *met* heidi rose this summer, and my reading made me run to the mountaintop and tell everyone about it! for real. FOR REAL.

and if you’re more of something-to-hold-onto giver, these cards are a house favorite. like, dipping back into all the feels from yesteryear while getting a cosmic fist bump!

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let’s talk EXPENDABLES, baby!

this candle is my new favorite thing because i adore pairing an intention with lighting a WHITE candle, so get one and let’s light 2018 up up up!

i have to give credit to my SIL for turning me onto these candles – and if you have the same response i did, good luck choosing just one!

my heart swoons for this company and i intend to collaborate + concoct a Simple Shui blend soon. like, really really really soon. until then, this and that are my favorites. but you can’t and won’t go wrong with any selection! (p.s. i like to buy these in batches for quick hostess gifts + client thank yous.)

as for lighting those candles, these babies make for clever coffee table conversation.

palo santo sticks: i love them; buy them by the bundle; light one on the daily; and methinks you should, too!

there are a couple things i firmly believe in keeping well-stocked, and this is one. i have been in the Juniper Ridge orbit since for-like-ever, and they keep getting better. bravo, team juniper, bravo!

front door swag is some seriously good shui AND no one ever expects it as a gift, so be someone’s front porch squad! give them a mat, splurge on an eye(and energy)-catching wreath, or sweep them off their feet with a pretty (it exists!) broom.

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finally, it is all about the ENTERTAINMENT. and for me, that distills down to what is happening around me because my kinda evening is Netflix + a bulky blanket + something to sip. so, here are few accents to make your home feel just as entertaining as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

follow her on insta and then, you know, find a way to bring a little of her ethereal magic home. because that is what she spins all the days.

her mala beads leave me obsessed. OBSESSED. (i am working on a wall of them.)

kantha quilts are all the rage in our house – i use them outside to get my hygge on, but i also love draping them over a table, piling them on a stool for visual texture, or pooling them into the nook of a chair for that “come hither” vibe.

a hefty dose of inspo + something delish? i’ll drink to that!

i am still pinching myself that we have an original portrait of hers – squeee! but if portraits aren’t your thing, how about commissioning a favorite quote? because something made just-for-me is gifting genius at its best.

and in the spirit of lovely things on the wall, how about visual motivation that looks as good as it feels?

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so, here’s to those lucky ladies and lads on your lists – any one of these gifts are simply the best. go for the things you like for the people you LOVE and you’ll have the holiday muses swooning in the air! xo

simple shui | happy halloween

if you haven’t joined the simple shui™ party happening on alexa + amazon, it’s time to moonwalk over and join me! i am sharing shui tricks + treats + truths you want! you need!! you can’t live without – haha!!! so, how about a whiff of the shui being served daily  – and just in time for Halloween!

this ditty i found in my notes from a call years ago with my mentor and friend, ellen. once upon a time, my lovelies would be so scared to go out on Halloween night, so she told me to send them trick-or-treating with a favorite piece of clothing underneath their costumes. simple and it reinforces feeling safe from all the things going bump in the night! if you want to mom-ify this a little more, encourage yours to choose something in a light color to balance out the dark palette and gestures of this holiday.

salt is one of nature’s most yang elements – and it offers protection from unwanted energy. so, whether it is at a festive party or on Halloween night, salt is a good thing to have on hand when good and questionable energies collide. instead of simply leaving bowls of salt out, however, let’s make this more glamorous. use himalayan salt candle holders to set the mood and keep negative ions (nature’s feel good vibes!) floating through the air! #winwinwin

wealth begins with a consciousness of abundance. you have to see it to receive it, so use the excuse of candy season to stock up on + hand out gold covered chocolate coins! how’s that for delicious and auspicious?

yang energy creates movement and action – so, it can speed up what we are seeking to manifest in our lives. and if you’re a destination spot for trick-or-treaters, your house will be the lucky recipient of super duper yang energy. however, if there is clutter in your space, it will absorb that reinvigorated energy that knows how to move you in new directions – opportunities + adventures + LOVE. what to do? give your house a quick clean before the doorbell rings and the good energy bling will be all yours!

finally, this simple shui™ tip has mileage all year long, lovies! after any holiday travel or vacation, you want to yank up (yang up) energy in your house. when we are away, the energy in our space gets quiet, settled, and a little too still because nothing is happening. upon your return, make like a gust of wind and turn the faucets on; open the windows; tune into some music; and stoke the stove or oven to get energy back on her feet and moving on your behalf. a quick on + off is all you need to wake the space up! remember, moving energy equals prosperous energy, so this shui guarantees high fives + smiles 8 days a week!

xo

simple shui | is clearing clutter *really* feng shui?

clutter.

and clearing it.

is this *true* feng shui or not?

like any field, experts often disagree on their subject matter.

and for shui, this one hatches some hot opinions.

so, let’s explore, shall we?

{1} shui is somewhere between 3,000 and 5,000 years old, depending on who you ask. but we can agree on this: it’s been around for millennia, right?

what hasn’t been around for thousands of years is our local target. or the wild world of amazon. throw in black holes of online shopping; trends that change seasonally + advertise prematurely; bigger homes + closet space + attics, oh my; and steady invitations to impulsively shop, buy, maybe even hoard. oh, and the cherry on top? disposable income. all of these – brand new concepts, relatively speaking.

so, clutter wasn’t a problem thousands of years ago. and in that vein, it would have no place in shui…

except. . .

{2} shui teaches us everything is energy + everything is connected.

ahhh. . . the forward thinking, muse-inspired, genius umbrella clause of shui. because everything implies, well, E V E  R Y T H  I N G. clutter included. and when our stuff sits without purpose or passion, it creates a low vibe energy. take this a hop further: if everything is connected, then those low vibes are definitely affecting you.

{3} and while we are under the shui canopy together, one last thought: living in harmony with the natural world around us is a top consideration in shui. in fact, its roots began in china where locating auspicious burial spots for loved ones was of the highest priority. from there, it became an influential compass for building homes. with nature still a ring leader.

observe mama nature. and guess what? nothing is wasted. every single thing serves a uniquely worthy purpose.

perhaps our homes are not meant to be so different.

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we tend to live in a *later* state of mind. and if you can name a time + date for *later*, great! but often, we just don’t know when we’ll have the time. or energy. or help to finally get through it all. there’s just too.much.stuff. vying for our attention.

change requires action. and it helps oh-so-much to have someone who knows what changes make the most difference.

that’s why we are here to help.

this course rocked more than a few worlds the first round. and it will most definitely influence the flavor + functionality of yours.

there is divine choreography in the prompts + conversation over these 21 days.

it starts june 9th and registration closes this FRIDAY.

sign up. and then, exhale.

because, at the end of those 3 weeks, you will agree with me…

clearing clutter is some of the best shui you ever learned.

xo

simple shui | house love

along the crisp edge of a new month, you’ll find me strutting my shui around here – giving our home that suit + tie feel. with a vigorous dose of elbow grease and intention, it’s my insurance we are in good hands for the weeks ahead. and, with spring awakening, there are a few pockets of space that could use some TLC. care to follow?

{1} CLEAN THE OVEN.

so not glamorous, right? but this appliance is a total drama queen when neglected. the stove and oven represent our wealth + well-being + prosperity – and who wants to entertain any melodramatics there? with temps outside still brrr-worthy, make this a priority. set the self-cleaner, let your oven works its own magic, and then finish it with a quick wipe-down and polish. once it’s done {phew}, prepare to hit a new flow!

{2} BUY FRESH FLORA.

spring sashays through the city, scattering color everywhere. if you’re a steady around simple shui, you know having something living in your house is mighty good shui. and anything vivacious positively captivates good energy. i go for african violets because they have this thing for cha-ching. the purple flowers and coin shaped leaves are both symbols of wealth – and who doesn’t want those kind of buddies?

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{3} EDIT A CLOSET.

waiting for that perfect mood to meet its perfect day so you can *once-and-for-all* purge the closet? consider this that moment. with winter wearing out its welcome, now is the best time to look honestly at your wardrobe and ask, “what did i not wear this season?”

edit out enough things that your closet has breathing room, and keep it on this diet. and when the temptation to splurge gets a hold of you, resist that impulse and buy matching hangers instead. necessity deserves to be beautiful, too.

{4} MULCH PLANTER BEDS.

when it comes to home projects, we tend to over-complicate our visions. yet, small improvements reap the most satisfaction. and mulching beds is a beautiful way to inexpensively manicure space. when our curb appeal exclaims why, hello!, opportunities somersault down our path.

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{5} WASH THE COVER UPS.

oh, those shower curtains + window panels + bed skirts! don’t you sometimes pretend they are fine without regular spins in the wash — or is that just me? when energy screams for a serious spruce, this is a relatively easy way to dial up reinforcements. and few scents rival that freshly laundered smell that spirits the air.

with winter kowtowing to spring, the air is wildly electric for a dalliance. get spring fling sparks flying in your radius with any of these simple suggestions! and maybe we’ll try this monthly checklist again in april, yes?

xo

inspired by | pink + white

sometimes.

after somersaulting through the weekly obligations of homework and such. . .

we reach an opening of space.

a ripe vine of free time.

and without the weight of things to do, there is a lure to weave something fun, something interesting into our week.

inspired by pinterest, i pulled out a few color samples + brushes. . .

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and suggested we paint a bushel of mini pumpkins.

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since i gravitate toward bright colors and the lovelies love the texture + feel of a hands-on project, it seemed the perfect way to spend a thursday afternoon.

after an hour of creative bliss, we had a pile of fetching pink + white pumpkins.

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pops of color make me happier than a lark, but it’s precisely in these moments of an ordinary afternoon well spent that i find my happiness really magnified.

xo