Why Not . . . Give Your Life an Annual Appraisal?

“The first months of the year are the perfect time to take stock of one’s life. I usually begin by making a short trip around the house to see what needs doing and make appointments, filling the calendar for the year.” —Mrs. Minerva from The English Home A much anticipated and habitually celebrated arrival in […]

A Capsule Menu: What It Is and How to Create Your Own

A full life, a life of contentment balanced with continual opportunities for growth and the ability to reach the goals we set for ourselves inevitably requires us to eat well. And as we balance our work and personal lives, finding time to go to the market, pick up the necessary ingredients and cook delicious, healthy […]

What Does a Simply Luxurious Life Look & Feel Like?

Just imagine, waking up with excitement, going through your day with clarity and unwinding in the evening with peace of mind and a dose of pleasure and extraordinary comfort. In a very succinct way, this is what living a simply luxurious life is about each and every day. But how does each of us reach […]

34 Must-Have Items for Your Home Épicerie

“In Paris in the 1950s, I had the supreme good fortune to study with a remarkably able group of chefs. From them I learned why good French food is an art, and why it makes such sublime eating: nothing is too much trouble if it turns out the way it should. Good results require that […]

11 Ways to Make Any Home Your Sanctuary

~The Simple Sophisticate, episode #105 The moment of relief. The moment that signifies to your worries to wait at the door while you step inside and let yourself unwind. Knowing we have a home to walk into each evening, afternoon and wake up to each morning is an amazing blessing that fulfills a powerful cornerstone […]

Small & Simple = A Grand & Full Life

“There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.” —Jane Austen ~The Simple Sophisticate, episode #97 As the twenty-first century begins to unfold, and gradually we climb out of the Great Recession, the hope would be that we apply the lessons learned and refrain from making the same mistakes. For example, one of the […]

Why Not . . . Gather the Essentials for Life?

~The Simple Sophisticate, episode #63 A confluence of emails from listeners of the podcast recently brought to my attention that many people have discovered TSLL blog through The Simple Sophisticate. And as such, made clear they may not be aware of the wealth of posts the Archives possesses. For example, reader Karen requested a post […]

Why Not . . . Simplify Your Choices?

“It is our choices… that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.” -J. K. Rowling ~The Simple Sophisticate, episode #62 Just as our muscles can become fatigued, so too can our minds. And when we bombard it with endless choices each day, much like using our smart phones excessively, the battery becomes drained […]

Life, Love & Decor: My Interview with Frances Schultz

“The house, whether cottage or castle, stands for who we are, how we live, and how we love ourselves and others.” –Frances Schultz, author of The Bee Cottage Story The Simple Sophisticate, episode #56 The entire interview with author and blogger Frances Schultz is available exclusively on audio this week, so do be sure to […]

8 Pillars of Building a Simply Luxurious Life

The premiere podcast of The Simple Sophisticate is now available for listening via iTunes! I am so excited to begin this new venture and look forward to each Monday sharing with readers and listeners ways to continue to cultivate their own simply luxurious life. Topics will dive deeper into how to live your best life, […]

10 Life Lessons Learned In College

The fall semester is about to begin in many colleges, and the fall quarter isn’t too far behind. When I imagine all of the students I have taught beginning college, many as freshman, I can’t help but reflect on my first experience away from home and doing my best to harness my freedom as well […]

Why Not . . . Master Your Money?

“If money be not thy servant, it will be thy master. The covetous man cannot so properly be said to possess wealth, as that may be said to possess him.” -Francis Bacon Money. Some of us love it, some of us loathe it and all of us need it in some capacity to live our […]

How to Maintain a Simply Luxurious Life

“A simple life is not seeing how little we can get by with—that’s poverty—but how efficiently we can put first things first. . . . When you’re clear about your purpose and your priorities, you can painlessly discard whatever does not support these, whether it’s clutter in your cabinets or commitments on your calendar.” -Victoria […]

Why Not . . . Organize Your Closet?

The fall collections are now in stores, the must-anticipated September fashion issues are arriving in mailboxes and newsstands (Vogue is scheduled to be available August 15 – although I know a few have been enjoying an early copy), and I must admit I’m getting excited to touch up my fall wardrobe. But before any meaningful […]

How to Set Yourself Free

“Everyone talks about freedom. All around the world different people, different races, different countries are fighting for freedom. But what is freedom? In America we speak of living in a free country. But are we really free? Are we free to be who we really are? The answer is no, we are not free. True […]

Why Not . . . Live a Healthy Long Life?

It happened one New Years that I found myself on the Oregon Coast. While on this particular leisurely vacation, my schedule was wide open, and I had time to think, dream and set goals. While perusing through a local bookstore, I came across a book that still sits in my office and is referred to […]

Why Not . . . Use Simple Changes to Transform Your Kitchen?

Part of creating a simply luxurious life is building a sanctuary that is welcoming, comforting and tranquil. One of the highlights of my day is pulling into the garage and walking into my home where I can let my hair down, come a little undone and breathe a huge sigh of relief that I can […]

16 Simple Ways to Organize Your Home

“Simplicity of living, if deliberately chosen, implies a compassionate approach to life.  It means that we are choosing to live our daily lives with some degree of conscious appreciation of the condition of the rest of the world.”  -Duane Elgin Yesterday I arrived home after taking a week off to luxuriate in the country, what […]

Why Not . . . Become Your Own Decorator?

  In yesterday’s post This & That: No. 5, I recommended Susanna Salk’s recently released decor book Be Your Own Decorator: Taking Inspiration and Cues from Today’s Top Designers. With gorgeous images of rooms designed by top interior designers such as Mary McDonald, Nate Berkus, Kelly Wearstler, Charlotte Moss just to name a few, Susanna […]

3 Simple Steps to Designing Your Best Life

“I believe that if you think about disaster, you will get it.  Brood about death and you hasten your demise.  Think positively and masterfully, with confidence and faith, and life becomes more secure, more fraught with action, richer in achievement and experience.” -Edward V. Rickenbacker Yesterday as the 2012 waved hello and introduced itself to […]

Why Not . . . Get Organized? Part Trois

Einstein most certainly knew what he was talking about as it is most certainly true that by simplifying and getting rid of the clutter as you organize your home, work and life you will find amazing opportunities to create a life richer and more fulfilling than you may have at first thought possible. During the […]

Why Not . . . Get Organized? Part Deux

Putting yourself on the offensive and getting your life organized is a surefire way to place yourself in a position for great success when the opportunity presents itself.  Last week, the first part of the Why Not . . . Get Organized? series began by sharing the basic tips on laying the ground work for […]

Why Not . . . Get Organized?

It was recently shared in The Independent that the designer behind Céline, Phoebe Philo, works reasonable hours – arriving at the same time in the morning and leaving at the same time in the evening. When asked how she is able to follow this type of schedule and still produce what is necessary she credited […]

Open & Organized

Whenever I cook in my kitchen, I am mentally imagining what my dream version would look like and in a recent post, I was reminded of one change that I would like to make – open shelves. With a cottage-like feel, open shelving allows you to display your beautiful wares (or an excuse to purchase […]