Coffee with Liz • January 28, 2022

For those who may have missed this announcement, Coffee with Liz is now a once a month series where I can answer all of your questions in one place! When we did this weekly the questions sort of felt redundant. I thought that this would be a good opportunity to catch up at the end of the month with anything you may have missed or questions you wanted to ask me! It’s been awhile so this is a big one to kick off 2022!

Can you share your eyebrow routine + the products you use for your brows? They always look so nice!

Ok so an important thing to note about my eyebrows is that they are naturally very full and fluffy. They grow in all different directions and if I don’t tame them, they can look like a hot mess. I also have a lot of blonde hair in my eyebrows so they can sometimes look sparse. I usually try to get them waxed and tinted every 2-3 months but haven’t found my person here in Charleston yet. But on a daily basis I use this Charlotte Tilbury brow gel in dark brown or Glossier Boy Brow. I will tweeze them in between but never along the line of my eyebrows, just stragglers.

I have a wedding in Puerto Rico at the end of February and would love your suggestions on what to wear. You always have the most fun and colorful dresses, which I think would be fun for this wedding.

Ohh fun!! A few beach wedding guest dress ideas here, here, here and here (with these earrings!).

How did you decide that you wanted to stop at 3 kids?

I always knew I wanted three and up until recently I thought I could maybe go for 4? But in December we had a scare (I was a few days late) and it was a huge realization that I am very content and happy to be where we are. I never wanted to have 4 to “go for the girl” which so many people ask. I thought about going for a fourth because I just love seeing my kids as siblings and the baby phase goes so fast and I miss it already. But I also realized how grateful I am to have what we have and I feel very content with where we are right now. I am so happy to just focus on my boys and give them all the love that I can.

What are your 2022 goals? Personal? Professional?

Although I don’t love to set “goals” for myself, my hopes for both are very similar. I want to find more balance between the two, I want to be better about time management, I want to rest more and give myself breaks, I want to sit down and play with my kids without feeling like I should be doing something else. I want to work BETTER, not necessarily harder. I want to just be happy, do things that I want to do, say yes when I want to and say no when I want to. We are all just trying to get by the best we can so big goals are not an option. I want to just have good days.

What do you normally ask for at your hair appointments for cut/color?

I am honestly not a huge hair person so I usually go in and give a very vague description of what I maybe want and then let my stylist run with it. I like to receive professional opinions so I think the key is finding someone you love and that is really good and trust their direction! But also in general, my hair doesn’t do well with layers – I need like choppy sections cut into my hair. If that makes sense? I usually bring some random images I find on Pinterest for inspo!

Do you have any hotel recommendations for Sullivan’s Island?

There are no hotels on Sullivan’s Island, maybe on Isle of Palm which is next door? Otherwise, The Post House is close by (maybe not great for families!) or anything downtown is a short drive to Sullivan’s!

How did you make couple friends in a new place? I’m having a tough time as a mom of 2!

We were very fortunate to have a few social friends in the area who have helped introduce us to others! But in addition to that, having Charlie start Kindergarten has opened our world up so much. It also helps that my husband could be friends with a shoe. He makes new friends every day and I’m the more reserved, introverted one who is just sort of along for the ride. But generally we are very open to meeting new people so it comes more easily maybe? I think the hardest part is putting yourself out there.

How do you approach self-reflection amongst all the kids/chaos? You seem very introspective and intuitive.

Thank you! I promise you I have my moments. But I think with age has come knowing my own personal needs. I really thrive on alone time so making sure that I can carve out time for myself is very important for my mental health. I really like to walk to this spot that looks out over the docks on the ocean and talk out loud to the waves. I like to say everything that is heavy on my mind and let it go. I don’t like to hold on to things. Also, I think life starts to feel chaotic when you’re busy noticing everyone’s life around you. Like when other people seem to have it together, you feel like you’re crumbling. At least I relate to that a lot and I learned to drown out a lot of the noise. There is this whole concept about your inner child (here is an in-depth look at it) that I think is so interesting. Really letting yourself connect to your own needs, boundaries and limits. As an adult I find it really easy to get caught up in the rat race of life, taking care of kids, working, maintaining the house, etc. that you forget about your own personal expectations, dreams, needs and more.

Life can be really heavy sometimes but you’re the only one who has the power to make it feel lighter.

Stand in your power!

Do you have any second birthday gift ideas for a boy?

My kids always loved the Brio trains or these suction dinosaurs are great for play on windows, in the bath, etc.

I’m a bride looking for fun things to wear for a rehearsal dinner, showers, etc. that aren’t white. Any ideas?

Ohh fun! I love this, this, this and this!

What advice do you have for managing your finances when you have/are adding kids to your family?

I am so lucky to have Dave Adams because he LOVES finances. He wrote this blog post that may be helpful but let me know if there are more specifics you would want him to touch on? He can write another post!

What was your favorite childhood book and movie?

Favorite childhood book: The Bedspread and The Little House. Favorite childhood movie: The Sound of Music or The King and I.

How do you find a babysitter in a new city?

Ask around! Neighbors, moms at school, stop a cute girl walking by and see if she babysits. Word of mouth is always a great place to start!

Did you use a night nurse with any of your kiddos? I don’t think I want one but I’m worried about not having any family close by for support.

No I didn’t! I couldn’t imagine giving up that time with my babies. It’s hard, don’t get me wrong, but I think having a supportive partner is more important than outside support.

Do you find having an at-home “gym” easier than a gym membership?

Right now, yes. I work more efficiently in the morning but prefer to get my workout in before I start my day, however, our current morning schedule is chaos getting the kids to school so I always get my days going later than I prefer. For that reason, I love that I can just hop on the bike or do a workout from home! BUT, I look forward to the day that I can get back into the gym and still have time to get everything else done in the day. We haven’t gotten into our groove with George yet since he is home with us. One day!

Do you have the source for your mom’s gorgeous kitchen rug in their Kansas house?

No but her designers – AsterHouse Designs – could probably help you! They also have a cute store called Furnish!

What are your biggest decorating tips for a new house? I.e., where. to start, where to splurge, etc.

Hmm – I honestly have no experience but I’m going to tell you what we focused on! We tackled our entire first floor first because we love to host and also it’s a pretty open space and I wanted it to feel cohesive. The second floor is SLOWWW but I don’t really care. We will get there when we get there! In terms of where to splurge, I think the details of our space really pack a punch and were worth the splurge. Things like wallpaper, window treatments/special fabrics, rugs and lighting. I have noticed that that is what people notice first in our home! Also our custom chairs in the kitchen seating area. I studied textiles in college so I’m really into different patterns and prints and textures. We wanted the area off our kitchen to feel adult/loungy and it’s such a beautiful statement.

What does a typical weekday look like for you?

Charlie and Jack wake us up between 5:45 and 6am, one of us goes downstairs and gets lunch made for Charlie + breakfast going. The other gets to lay in bed for some extra minutes and then grabs George who starts to yell around 6:30am. Then one of us takes Charlie to school at 7am and Jack goes to school between 8 and 8:15am. Whoever doesn’t do school drop off then feeds George breakfast at home and then he goes down for a nap at 9am. Then I will immediately workout, shower and start my work day or I’ll skip workout and get ready to work. We have a sitter for George 3x a week from 11-5pm. We pick up Charlie from school at 2:15 and Jack at 3:30. They usually like to decompress with 30 minutes of TV after school while I try to finish up work before grabbing Jack. Once the boys are home from school my work sort of wraps up. So I usually get my work in between 10:30 and 2pm and answer emails as I go through the day. I’ll also sneak away at night if more work is required. We do dinner between 5:30 and 6, most days the boys eat earlier than us because they are hungry. George eats at 5pm. Then George gets a bath around 5:45 and big boys take a bath around 6:15. George goes to bed around 6:30pm and we color or do puzzles and watch a movie with the big boys until they go to bed between 7:30/8pm! Dave and I will either eat around 7 or eat after the kids are asleep, depending on what I’m cooking. Most nights I get into bed by 9pm because we wake up so early. But that’s your average day around here.

Would love to hear more about what things look like behind the scenes at Olive Lane! Do you have business partners?

Yes I need to share more of this! We have an amazing team who is constantly sourcing new products, merchandizing the site, receiving and shipping products, planning our social media and newsletter strategy, researching new brands and more. I feel so lucky to have such wonderful humans working to really uphold the Olive Lane dream and bring it to life. On a day to day, I am planning content strategies, coming up with ideas to bring OL into your home, working on promotion, approving new products or brands for the site, looking ahead to potential collabs and already researching for holiday this year! We have some amazing brands and products launching in February, which were a little delayed thanks to the craziness of the world so I’m excited to finally share with you.

Would you ever write a cookbook?

I would love to! But I am not really a recipe creator. My mom is an amazing cook and I think it would be so special to do something together. Let’s manifest it!

Do you have any wallet recommendations? I need one I can throw in any of my bags.

I have had this Prada wallet for 5 years and I still love lit. But I’ve been eyeing this Celine one! This one is gorgeous and under $200.

What were your maternity clothing must-haves?

I love everything from Hatch, it’s a splurge but you end up wearing the same thing week after week and it’s nice to have some high quality things. I also loved DL1961 maternity jeans and my favorite lululemon Align leggings (I would size up 1 size).

I’m thinking about quitting my job to stay home with my baby, and I’m worried about judgement from others. Any advice?

Who cares and who the hell judges you because you want to be at home with your kids! Do what makes you happy. If anyone judges you it is because they are probably jealous that you are able to do so on some level. I would say follow what your own gut is telling you to do and know that you can always go back to a career if you want to!

How do you wind down after a crazy day?

A glass of wine and a clean house and zero electronics around me.

What are your favorite girl names?

Lucy, Lyla, Annie and Ellie (short for Elizabeth).

Can you share your workout schedule from the past few months? You look great!

Thank you! I don’t know if I have much of routine but more I’m just consistent with it. I love to sweat in a workout. I feel like it’s pain, fear, stress, negative energy and all the junk leaving my body. It’s something I very much enjoy and is always on my list when I start my day (whether I get to it or not). I feel like having that mindset and getting exercise into your routine consistently is the hardest part! That being said, I try to do cardio 3x a week and strength of some sort 3x a week. 2 of those days they are usually combined (I’ll do a bike workout + 20 minute circuit) so I typically workout 4-5 days a week. My weekly goal is to workout more days of the week than not. I usually do a bike ride or run outside for cardio and then I’ll do a strength circuit on my MYX bike or a Heather Roberston video on Youtube.

I used to think that if I wasn’t working out for at least an hour I wasn’t getting a good enough workout and I’ve realized over the past year how completely wrong that is. Even a 15 minute bike ride makes a difference in my day. So if you feel like carving out time for a workout feels like a commitment, remember that even just something quick to get your heart rate up works wonders for your body. I don’t know, realizing that has helped working out fit into my schedule more easily.

I’m the first in my friend group to have a baby and I’m starting to feel a little isolated. Any advice?

I’m sorry you feel that way! I think the best you can do is be present with them when you can and maybe tell them that you’re feeling a little left out…but also it’s ok! You’re going to be the first to experience this crazy life change and they will see it and support you. We went through a similar thing in my friend group and now that we all have kids we have acknowledged what it was at the time and I always say – you don’t know what you don’t know. Regardless if you feel all the support or none at all, it’s sort of an isolating time as your body changes and you welcome a whole new role! The best thing you can do is say how you feel, don’t keep it in, ask for help and know that even if they can’t relate to what you’re going through, they love and support you!

What project are you most excited about right now?

For work, we have some really fun collaborative business projects we are working on that I’m excited to share with you this year! We are also thinking about bringing wellness month back for March – what would you think about that? I really want to concentrate on self care/self love and I feel like it would be this two year culmination from the last wellness month! I feel like we all need it.

At home, the boys room is coming together! We realized we were missing a part for their beds that is backordered until March so waiting on those and then we will be sharing. We also have a big home project on the horizon for the middle of this year that would be a re-do of our primary bedroom + bath. I’m also just looking to finish up decorating a few spaces like our playroom and mudroom. So lots of home content to come on the horizon!

What did you do after college and before you started blogging?

I studied textiles and clothing in college with a minor in Business with a focus in buying and merchandising. After college I was a clothing buyer for a small midwest boutique company with multiple locations around the US. After that I worked in administration for a large contracting firm in Chicago, while also managing my blog at night, and then I took a chance and went full time with my blog in September of 2011. Last year was 10 years of working for myself which is insanity.

What’s your “silver lining” saying — aka what you tell yourself when you need a boost?

You can do hard things!

Do you think George is more like Jack or Charlie?

I think he looks more like Charlie’s features as a baby. They have the same eyes (aside form the color!) and face shape. Personality wise, it’s hard to tell. He is a very dramatic baby, ha, which makes me lean Charlie too. Jack is our sweet little old soul who is content and just wants to be loved on. Isn’t birth order so interesting? I feel like it say a lot about our kids.

Submit your questions for next month by emailing with the subject line, “COFFEE WITH LIZ!”

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