Written by Regina Bauman and Meg Delagrange
Raindrops on roses
And whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of our favorite things!
Regina’s Favorite Things
01. Tieks Flats
I have worn many different brands of flats over the years. Usually they lasted one or two seasons before needing a replacement. Last year I found out about Tieks — those handmade leather flats with a blue rubber sole. I was immediately intrigued, started reading reviews, following them on social, and shopping the many many colors.
I didn’t know if I could ever drop $200 on one pair of shoes, but they were really calling my name. Then, for my birthday last year Jay bought me FOUR pairs of them. Apparently he listened as I talked about all the colors because they were my favorite choices!
Every time I slide on a pair I feel happy—and comfortable.
Photo by Nancy Center Photography
After reading about the hygge phenomenon, I realized that I’ve been hygge-ing all my life and just didn’t know it! The things that have always refreshed and inspired me are all considered hygge. Even if you don’t care about being hygge, you will enjoy reading about why Danes are rated the happiest people in the world.
Hint: they enjoy the simple things such as cake, candles, and wool socks as well as time with friends.
This spring I am replacing some of my living room furniture, and this book has completely inspired me to pay even more attention to the cozy factor. Wool shag rugs, linen couches, more lamps, soft cashmere throws, and of course candles are all on the shopping list. If only I could as easily add a fireplace…
03. Salt Lamps
Salt lamps have been a clean-air trend for a few years now, but I’m still completely on board. They create such a cozy glow, and I feel sure they are very hygge.
Further Reading: All About Salt
04. Linen Duvet
I saved up and bought a 100% linen duvet cover last year. After also investing in some quality cotton sheets, I can hardly wait to climb into bed every night. The linen has that natural texture that stays slightly wrinkled but is always soft and comfortable. I love the naturally comfortable look!
05. Silk tops and scarves
Apparently I’ve lived under a rock all my life, because I have never owned a silk top. Not even so much as a silk scarf! But recently after reading about the delightful luxury of silk in The Simply Luxurious Life I knew I needed to change that.
While shopping at a little consignment boutique in Florida I found a White House Black Market red silk shirt. As soon as the cool silk slid over my skin I knew I was buying it. I also found a bright blue silk scarf by Chico’s that I didn’t leave without buying. I”m now in the market for silk lingerie, as I hear that is the height of simple luxury. Unfortunately it’s not cheap luxury.
06. Mighty Leaf Tea
Since I drink peppermint tea all the time, I buy the dry leaves in bulk and make a whole pot at a time in a French press. But for a bit of variety, I love these tea bags.
They taste much more fresh and flavorful than any other tea bags I’ve tried. There’s nothing more calming and relaxing then sitting down with a hot cup of tea anytime throughout the day!
I’m a huge popcorn consumer, and could even possibly be called picky about the quality of the popcorn and the amount of butter. This popcorn I buy on Amazon (easy shopping = WINNING). My favorite butter is Kerrygold, and on special occasions (every other night) I even let myself use it on my popcorn.
So possibly everyone in the world but me has a boar bristle brush. I recently got one after my friend Sharon introduced me to them as the possibility of a scalp massage while you brush your hair. It also distributes the natural oils from your scalp throughout your hair for a healthy shine and smooths flyaway ends.
I recently clicked on a Facebook ad talking about a personalized shampoo + conditioner. Since I was searching for a different shampoo at the moment, the uniquely individualized service they offer really intrigued me.
After filling out a quick hair quiz with questions about what my hair is like and what my hair goals are (just make me look like Angelina Jolie please) my personalized shampoo was on it’s way! This gorgeous mint box showed up in the mail a few days later with a shampoo bottle that even had my name on it.
After using it for several months, I will definitely be ordering again! It leaves my hair perfectly silky and moisturized, and has even helped my frizz problem. They also have a subscription option for those of us who like to keep shopping simple.
*Full disclosure: affiliate link has been included.
10. The Regina Tote
Let’s face it, this will always be one of my favorite things. Leather has a way of becoming part of your story, softening into that comfortable accessory you just reach for again and again and again.
Now that I have my own leather tote named after me, my life is complete.
Photo by Nancy Center Photography
Meg’s Favorite Things
01. Eye Cream by Nash and Jones
Last year Regina introduced me to Nash and Jones at Made South’s Holiday Market at The Factory at Franklin. When I tried the eye cream, I knew I had to have it and I’ve been using it nonstop since then.
Other eye creams always made my eyes feel either sticky or too oily but this eye cream feels weightless and nourishing. It’s my favorite facial treatment to apply before I go to sleep at night and I also use it in the morning when I get up. My eyes are pampered, y’all.
02. Spotify Premium
I wasn’t really into Spotify until last winter when a friend introduced Spotify Premium to me. Are you asking where I’ve been all this time? Well, you know I used to be Amish, right?
Make no mistake, music has always been a key part of who I am.
I loved to listen to my mom singing in her native Swiss tongue and yodeling as she worked. I would sneak around to listen to the radio when I was a girl. I cried myself to sleep because I wished I could have a piano after I saw one for the first time. When I was older, I was part of a Mennonite choir.
Today my music tastes have changed a lot and I love exploring new genres on Spotify.
Tip: Spotify without it’s paid premium feature really isn’t good. Trust me.
There are so many reasons why I love Spotify Premium.
1. Create Playlists
When I got started, I first created playlists from artist and genre favorites. Then I started creating mixed genre playlists for different moods and my music taste buds exploded.
Not all of my playlists are musical masterpieces but there are a couple that I would compare to the perfect seven course meal. Listening to them is like enjoying your food so much that you have to close your eyes. The songs are a perfect mixture of comfort with unexpected bursts of unique flavors.
My playlists are almost as personal as my written journals — therefore I love the option of keeping some of my playlists private. I’ve created playlists that remind me of certain cities. These songs remind me of experiences in a particular city so sometimes these playlists really only make sense to me. I listen to these lists when I want to relive my most memorable travels.
City Themed Playlists
A Few Other Favorite Playlists
2. Follow Music Artists
I love following artists I that I already like and finding new ones. There are countless playlists that Spotify and other users have already created that are fun to listen to and follow.
3. Spotify Radio
I also have the option of listening to Spotify Radio with songs that are similar to artists I like or stations within a specific genre. Every time I hear a song I like, I can favorite it and later go back and add my favorite songs to existing playlists if I want to.
4. Take Your Music With You
I take my music with me everywhere I go. With Spotify Premium, I may download my playlists so I can play them when I don’t have wifi or cellular data. Last month I took my playlists from Denver to Birmingham, Nashville, London, and Uganda, Africa.
The option of switching between the app on my desktop or my phone makes for a seamless streaming experience. Recently I ran out of space on my 64g iPhone because I have too many playlists downloaded. What does this say about me?
03. Unscented Body Butter by Eby Farms
The first time I tried it, I received a small container of it in a care package from my friend Jen after my brother passed away. I used it all within several weeks and messaged Eby Farms to order more.
When Eby Farms found out that we were headed to New York Fashion Week, they generously offered to provide products for the gift bags for all of our guests.
We keep hearing that folks have been loving their own body butters, homemade soap, and natural lip moisturizer. We love you Eby Farms!
04. The War of Art
My friend MJ sent this book to me. For the first time, I understand more fully what is happening when I create and why I encounter creative blocks. If you’re a creative person, you should read this book. That’s all I need to say.
I love poppy flowers. I love real poppies that grow along the roadside and I love painting abstract poppies.
Poppies are symbolic of many things to me. My favorite fact about poppies is that one poppy flower contains 10,000-60,ooo poppy seeds on average. A single flower has the potential to seed an entire new field of flowers, representing the unlimited potential inside of each one of us.
Most recently, I had the privilege of painting a 27′ foot mural at a school in Uganda, Africa with the Hoffman Family Foundation.
06. My Amish Hat
One day I had a thought. I already wore hats all the time, so why didn’t I have an Amish hat like my Grosdaddy (Grandpa) used to wear? Of course, my Grosdaddy wouldn’t approve of a woman wearing a man’s hat, but he would be more horrified by my nose piercing if he were alive to see it.
When we went to New York for Fashion Week, I asked a friend of mine from Lancaster if she could get an authentic Amish hat for me to wear. She ended up getting one from her Amish neighbor and I wore a real Amish hat at New York Fashion Week.
I took my Amish hat to Africa with me, too.
07. Charity Miles
This is a mile tracking app for the greater good. I love that I can use it to not only track how many miles I walk, but also benefit a nonprofit organization of my choice. This motivates me quite a bit and walking has so many benefits.
Walking is an attainable form of daily exercise. I tend to burn out and give up when I try to stick with other types of exercise and other types keep me inside. This one gets me outside. Often I run or jog for part of my daily mileage to get my heart rate up.
08. The Backpack Messenger
I have the original design of the Backpack Messenger by Urban Southern and I use it everyday. In the spring of 2017, we discontinued this design to work on a revision that we are going to launch in the fall.
When I’m wearing this simple leather backpack to travel, it stays out of the way. Because of it’s slim profile, I never have to worry about knocking people over when I turn around. I love that I can avoid unknowingly invading someone’s personal space when I ride the bus or train, especially in foreign countries.
What I find most useful about this bag is it’s internal laptop sleeve where my MacBook is protected and separated from everything else that I’m carrying.
Regina and I’s families both used multiple sizes of these stainless steel bowls when we grew up. We used them to haul things in from the garden with. On corn husking days, our moms would fill bowl after bowl with cut corn as they cut it off of the cobs with sharp knives. On butcher day you can be sure all of those bowls were lined up and used for different meat parts. On hot summer days, we could fill the biggest bowls with water and splash in them.
Today I’m a single mom with one daughter, but I still use my big stainless steel bowl all the time.
Every Sunday night it gets filled with popcorn.
On weekends when I do meal prep for the week, I mix up the ingredients for casseroles in this big bowl. When it’s warm outside, I turn it into a mini pool so my daughter can play in the water.
Chromecast is a premium TV streaming device by Google. I can cast anything from my laptop or phone screen to my TV with this device. It’s magical.
I was gifted a Chromecast device on Christmas two years ago by my ex-boyfriend’s brother. I stuck it into a box and forgot about it because it looked too complicated to use. Now I’m using it and I don’t know what I’ve ever done without it!
The best part about not being Amish is having all this technology in my life. Where other people might take these new fangled things for granted, I’m endlessly fascinated with them.
Every time I stream a Netflix episode from my laptop or my iPhone to my TV via Chromecast, I marvel.
What are your favorite things?
We would love to hear about your favorites! Drop a comment below and let us know!
The post A Few — or Twenty — of Regina and Meg’s Favorite Things appeared first on Urban Southern.