Taking Care of Yourself During the Winter

Taking Care of Yourself During the Winter

Sweater // Jeans // Boots // Coat // Sunglasses

One thing I love about Idaho is experiencing the four seasons, including winter. I’m always so excited for the first snow and the start of ski season, and I do genuinely enjoy the cold…for a few months that is. It’s at about this time every year, where I really just start to feel “over” winter and am so ready for spring. We’ve had an onslaught of snow and colder than normal temperatures over the past week, which is starting to get to me a bit. Today I’m sharing some ways to help feel your best to help get through these (hopefully) last weeks of winter!


I do find its harder to drink enough water when its cold outside, and I prefer hot drinks like coffee (which is super dehydrating). I love sparkling water which helps me increase the amount of water I drink, and an infuser to flavor water can also help encourage fluid intake.


My skin really struggles in the winter, so I really try to take the time to give it a little extra TLC. Hyaluronic acid helps the skin by working as a magnet for moisture and helps your cells retain as much as possible. I apply hyaluronic acid nightly, along with a moisturizer, and often include an extra hydrating step like a sheet or sleep mask. And even though it is winter, don’t forget to wear your sunscreen! I also make sure to moisturize my whole body with a quality moisturizer, and for my feet an extra rich moisturizer. My hair also tends to get very dry, so I add moroccan argan oil daily, and use a deep conditioning treatment 1-2 times per week.


I love running, but it’s very hard for me to continue to run regularly in the coldest part of winter. Of course warm clothes help, but sometimes I just find it too miserable to run. When I lose motivation to run due to the weather, I try to ski as often as I can and even just increase my walking as much as possible. An indoor fitness program can be a great option, or even just taking time for yoga or stretching.


Rich, heavy comfort foods are really tempting during the winter, and it is super easy to pack on the pounds. Finding the balance of having warm foods that are still light and healthy (like broth based soups with vegetables), will help you feel your best! I also try to make kale smoothies several times a week. A vitamin D supplement is also very important during the winter!


Treating myself some warm and cozy loungewear helps cheer me up a bit when I feel trapped indoors. My feet are constantly cold as well, so warm slippers and aloe infused socks are a nice treat.



Water Bottle Infuser // Hyaluronic Cloud Cream // La Mer Moisturizer // Water Sleeping Mask // Kiehl’s Moisturizer // L’Occitane Foot Cream // Moroccanoil // Hair Mask // Running Jacket // Vitamin D Supplement // Sweatsuit Top and Bottoms


Weekend Notes 10.11

Weekend Notes 10.11

At grandma’s house in Malibu in March 2011

This weekend has been a bit a somber around our home. My husbands parents home in Malibu where they lived many years until their passing a few years back, was lost in the Woolsey Fire over the weekend. Although the home was sold several years back, the home held many special memories for us. Jon’s mom was in poor health when Cole was born, and we only got to have her be a part of Cole’s life for a short time. Almost all the memories we have of Cole and his grandma happened in that home. Cole doesn’t remember her, but we always show him pictures and share stories. We had always planned on taking him back to see the house one day, and it is sad to know that we will now never have that opportunity and that place where so many special memories were made is now forever gone. And Calamigos Ranch in Malibu where Jon and I were married was also sadly lost to the fire as well.

While I am sad these special places are gone, I can’t imagine the heartbreak of those losing their homes to this devastating fire. Lives have been lost, and people’s homes and possessions have been destroyed in an instant. I have so much admiration for the incredible first responders putting their life on the line and I’m hoping that no more lives will be lost. I’ve been looking for ways to help and I’ve found a list of organizations who are taking donations and contributions:

American Red Cross workers have set up temporary shelters and food sites across the state. Donate to the efforts by visiting redcross.org or texting REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Donors can even specifically request their monies go towards California relief efforts by writing the specific disaster name in the memo line of a check made out to the organization.

The Los Angeles Fire Department Foundation supports the first responders fighting on the frontlines of the wildfires. They are currently requesting donations to put towards hydration backpacks for the firefighters.

The CCF Wildfire Relief Fund supports immediate recovery efforts for major California wildfires, as well as long-term preparedness efforts.

The United Way of Greater Los Angeles is partnering with United Way of Ventura County to collect donations for its its Disaster Relief Fund.

The Humane Society of Ventura County is accepting animals evacuating from the Hill and Woolsey fires. You can also donate directly to the organization or purchase items like food and toys through their Amazon wish list.

Baby2Baby is working to get high-need items to children affected by the ongoing Camp, Hill, and Woolsey fires in California. Help them supply diapers, wipes, blankets, and other basic baby essentials to families in need by purchasing from their registry.

The Firefighters Charitable Foundation accepts donations to support volunteer fire stations and helps wildfire victims.

California Volunteers, a state office that manages volunteer programs in California, has created a list of services and donation options to help victims affected by the Camp, Woolsey, and Hill fires. Use this list to find information about making donations and volunteering.

Airbnb’s Open Home Program facilitates connecting those displaced by natural disaster with people who can open up their homes in the area. The accommodations are free. So far, over 700 homes have been opened to evacuees in Ventura County.

California Fire Foundation is a statewide nonprofit organization that is working to get fast funds to everyone effected through its SAVE program, where frontline firefighters are given prepaid Mastercards to distribute to victims who often didn’t have time to pack everything they needed before they were forced to evacuate. With it, they can get necessities like food, a change of clothes, or pay for somewhere to stay.


Weekend Notes 10.27

Weekend Notes 10.27

Halloween festivities have been in full swing at our house over the past week, and we are trying to soak up as much of the Halloween spirit as we can. Halloween movie nights, costume making, and a Starbucks run for their holiday “Witch’s Brew” Frappuccinos (the kids loved them!) have been some of our highlights. We want to get in as much Halloween fun as we can this last weekend before the holiday, so we are planning on making a return to the pumpkin patch, carving our pumpkins, and making some Halloween treats.

This week Cole and I also had a mommy/son date and went to see the Broadway performance of The Lion King. They are on tour and as soon as I heard they were coming to Boise I grabbed tickets. I expected it to be good…I didn’t expect it to be as incredible as it was. Cole and I were just completely blown away at the costumes and the sets…it really was such a memorable night and I hope we get the opportunity to go again one day when Evan is a little older so he can experience it too!

Work out The findings of a study about the importance of cardiovascular exercise have been making the rounds online this week. Of course we all know that exercise is important for health, but the results of this study were quite frankly shocking. Researchers found that a sedentary lifestyle is worse for your health and life expectancy than SMOKING. Pretty surprising right?!

Last minute costumes The spookiest night of the year is just four days away! If you haven’t gotten your costume yet, here are some great last minute costume ideas.

Dupe jacket I’ve been eyeing this I.Am.Gia Pixie jacket that has been all over insta, and I was super excited to find an identical dupe that is literally 1/4 the price! I’m definitely going to be snagging this!

Boot bargain My absolute favorite and splurge worthy Stuart Weitzman boots are currently on sale for 45-50% off (which never happens!). Grab yourself a pair of Lowlands, Highlands, or this gorgeous knee high pair. While there are a lot of dupes for Stuart Weitzman boots, there is nothing quite like the real deal in terms of comfort and quality. They are well worth the splurge! (See all available styles on sale here)

Sales, sales, sales Some of the best sales this weekend:

Macy’s: 20% off lowest prices of the season sale with code DEALS

Saks Fifth Avenue: Up to 30% off select bedding, bath, and decorative home items

Lord & Taylor: Receive up to 50% off select styles with code LTDAYS

The Outnet: Take up to 50% off select styles

Old Navy: Receive up to 40% off select pants, jeans, outerwear, and tees



Weekend Notes 10.20

Weekend Notes 10.20

Thursday night Cole’s school held their annual Boo Bash – which is essentially a fall carnival/Halloween party. Our family Halloween costumes aren’t quite ready yet as we are insane making the majority of our costumes this year, so we had to scramble and come up with something quick. Evan ended up in an old astronaut costume of Cole’s, and I grabbed a simple bandit costume for Cole.

Of course no carnival is complete without a cake walk, and my boys were determined to come home with dessert. After walking at least 20 rounds, and it wasn’t looking promising with the carnival down to the last few desserts, Evan finally got his number called and got to come home with some chocolate cupcakes. You would have thought the kids won the lottery with how excited they were! Coming home and eating chocolate cupcakes and getting to stay up late watching Halloween movies was pretty much the highlight of their week.

Costume inspo I am planning on buckling down this weekend and working on getting our Halloween costumes finished. Do you have your Halloween costumes yet?! Here’s some fun family costume ideas!

New running kicks I just bought some much needed new running shoes and after a few test runs I have to say these Brooks are amazing!

Skincare favorites A few skincare products I have really been loving! First up this Foreo Luna. My skin has been clearer and brighter since I started using this a few months ago. I am also obsessed with this Vit C, E and Ferulic Acid serum which is a dupe of the nearly identical and much more expensive Skinceuticals serum. I’ve been using it for 3 months now and my skin tone has visibly improved!

Recipe refresh A friend sent me a photo of the most amazing looking skillet cookie she had baked a few weeks back and I was all…Need. Recipe. Now. It is in Chrissy Tiegen’s new cookbook which I just purchased and I can’t wait to try so many of the recipes. They all look amazing and perfect comfort food for the cooler weather!

Get out and vote November 6th is fast approaching, and it is so important to get out & exercise your right to vote! Go here to check your registration status and find your polling place.


Weekend Notes 10.12

Weekend Notes 10.12

It has been a long week around here with soccer practices, Taekowndo, school fundraisers and projects around the house. I’ve started to realize we’ve really over extended ourselves with commitments and activities, and I’m ready to slow down a bit! I think we get so eager to get back to our routine and jump into activities at the start of the school year, and this is about the time when burn out begins to creep in. Fortunately we have a few extended weekends coming up, and I’m also planning a leisurely weekend ahead!

Best Birthday Gift We bought Cole the GizmoPal for his recent birthday and it has been one of our best kid purchases to date! If you haven’t heard of it, it’s a watch that also functions as a phone (to limited pre-set numbers) and also has GPS tracking. Cole loves to call home throughout his school day to check in, and I love the GPS tracking feature. It also gives me peace of mind when dropping him off at birthday parties, playdates, or even leaving him with a babysitter. GizmoPal is only compatible with Verizon, but there are other versions you can read about here.

Spooky Story On a recent shopping trip I came across the cutest book “The Spooky Express Idaho” that I just had to grab for my kids. It’s a sweet little story of a spooky train traveling around the state of Idaho on Halloween night. The book is available in a version for almost all states and a number of larger cities as well! (You can find it here) It makes for a fun bedtime story this month!

Peak Foliage The leaves are really getting beautiful here in Boise, and we are very near to peak foliage. It really is such a short time when the colors are at their peak, so I really want to get out and enjoy these beautiful leaves while they last! Take a look at the Fall Foliage Nationwide Map to see when leaves will be at their peak in your area.

Skincare Drama I was in a bit of a panic this week when a friend informed me that our skincare favorite brand The Ordinary was closing down amid some strange actions and claims by the founder & CEO. Today a judge ruled in favor of shareholder Esteé Lauder to remove the CEO and resume operations. An interesting read at BuzzFeed.

Winter Wardrobe I know it’s only October, but its a good time to start thinking ahead and grab some winter staples! J Crew is having a sale of up to 40% off which is a great deal for some of their classic pieces. I have this parka and this cocoon coat both in 2 colors and I highly recommend them!

Feminist Fashion Heidi Slimane has officially taken over Céline after the departure of Phoebe Philo…and the reaction has not been a good one from Céline fans. I have to admit, I am sad to see the aesthetic I loved change so drastically and this Vox article really does a great job of talking about why this drastic change in the brand’s direction is so controversial, especially in light of the #metoo movement. It is rumored that Phoebe Philo’s beloved handbag designs for Céline will be discontinued at the end of the year as well…so I’m off to search online consignment shops!

Have a great weekend!


Comparison is the Thief of Joy

Comparison is the Thief of Joy

Happy New Year! I wanted to start out the New Year on an inspiring note and write about something that is so easy to fall victim to – especially in this age of social media. I’m sure we’ve all been there at some point. You are scrolling through your social media and come across that woman who seems like she has it all…amazing home, fancy cars, luxurious vacations, doting husband, perfectly behaved children, has the dream job, all while wearing her size 2 jeans in Louboutin heels…and your life seems to pale in comparison. No matter how good you may be feeling about your own life, seeing someone else’s “amazing” life can make you doubt your self worth. And having constant, instant access of other people’s “perfect lives” with social media can really have a negative effect on your happiness. So here are a few things to keep in mind when you find yourself feeling this way:

Social media is a highlight reel and I think most of us choose to show the best parts of our life (although there are some people who like to post all the negative and air all the dirty laundry which is a whole other issue!). I know I would rather share the fun and happy parts of my life because those are the moments I want to freeze in time and remember. I really don’t want to post the toddler meltdowns, the endless piles of laundry, and the day to day moments of motherhood and life that can be difficult. But we ALL have those moments and nobody has the “perfect” life all the time. Everyone has some kind of struggle, and what you think you are comparing yourself to is an edited version of that person’s reality. It isn’t truly the full picture of their life, and your day-to-day real life isn’t a fair comparison with someone else’s highlight reel.

Feeling badly about yourself isn’t going to help you accomplish your goals. When you are so focused on what someone else has that you don’t, you aren’t taking action in your own life and are likely to feel down and discouraged. I’m a huge believer in taking action, because endlessly complaining and feeling discouraged will never change your circumstances or make you feel better about your own life. When you start taking steps towards your goals and keeping busy with trying to achieve them, it has an amazing way of making you feel inspired and confident! What is it ultimately that is your priority and what is most important to you? I admit I have had twinges of envy at times seeing women with amazing careers, while I chose to stay home with my kids and have just recently returned to the workforce. But every time I have felt that, I am quick to remind myself what a blessing it has been being with my kids every day since they were born, and I ultimately wouldn’t change that for anything.

Comparison is always a losing battle. Because there will always be someone smarter, richer, prettier, skinnier…whatever it may be that you are comparing yourself to. If your self worth is coming from a place of trying to be more, have more, and do more than someone else – you are always going to fall short of someone. Instead of focusing externally, focus inward on becoming the best version of you that you can be. We all have strengths that make us unique, and focusing on those is a sure way to help you feel confident! “Be yourself…everyone else is already taken.”

“It is not joy that makes us grateful, it is gratitude that makes us joyful.” This is my all time favorite quote and I believe is the key to long lasting happiness. If you are always looking to the next thing or trying to achieve what someone else has thinking it will make you happy – whether its a new car, new home, new job, a fancy vacation, new luxury purchase – you are never going to be truly happy. Because the happiness that comes from “stuff” is fleeting and doesn’t last, and you will always be looking for the next thing. Pausing and focusing on what truly matters in life and being grateful for what you have, right now in this moment, is guaranteed to make you feel true and genuine happiness. One time my husband and I were talking about how much we loved the kids & he said, “isn’t it crazy that someone could offer us a billion dollars for our kids and we wouldn’t take it?!” It’s kind of a silly analogy, but it really is true. The most precious things in life cannot be bought and even on the tough days, the truth is I wouldn’t trade lives with anyone for anything. Even when life seems difficult and you feel your life is lacking, what is it in your life that you are grateful for?

Lastly, try to come from a place of abundance rather than scarcity. When you come from scarcity, you may feel that life only has so much to go around and that when someone else gets more, it means less for you. The abundance mentality comes from a place of knowing there is an abundance in the universe and enough to go around for everyone. Instead of comparing, say to yourself there is plenty for everyone and someone else’s success or good fortune is taking nothing from you. This mindset will keep you from comparing and competing when you can instead be focused on all of the opportunities in the universe that are available to you!

I hope this post helps you find a little more joy, gratitude, and happiness in 2018!



Blog Beginnings

Blog Beginnings

Hi there and welcome! I’ve created this blog to share a bit about my life, what inspires me, and as a fun creative outlet! I used to blog a few years ago, but as life got busy with kids, work and other commitments, I decided to give it a rest for a bit. However I found myself missing my little creative space and wanted to share a bit of the fun, the frivolous, the sometimes difficult, and the inspiring things in life! At the time I first started blogging, I was living in the southern California desert – thus the inspiration for the name of my blog (and I now currently live in the high desert of Idaho!).

A little about me – I was born and raised in a tiny (by tiny I mean the only thing in town was a gas station!) town in Eastern Oregon. At age 17, I moved to Boise, Idaho to pursue a degree in nursing at Boise State University. After graduation I worked at a local hospital for a number of years before setting off to work as a travel nurse. In my 2 years of travel nursing I worked in Santa Barbara California, Palm Springs California, and Seattle Washington. During my travels I met my husband on a blind date – a set up by a fellow nurse! We got married & settled in Palm Desert California for 6 years, however in my heart I was always hoping that one day we would get the opportunity to move back to the Pacific Northwest to raise our family. In 2014, my dream came true and we were finally able to settle back in Boise! I absolutely love so much about this city – the seasons, the beautiful outdoors, our quirky downtown, and how family friendly this community is. I can’t imagine raising our kids in a better place!

I have two crazy little boys that are the light of my life! I’ve recently returned to the workforce after 7 years of being a stay at home mom and now work as a realtor. Running and photography are my favorite hobbies, and I love being outside as much as I possibly can.  Thank you for visiting my little space on the internet!

xo, Brooke