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Emily Henderson

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Now that April Fools is long gone (did you like the “soup” video??) we are ready to get into the serious swing of things. And by serious we mean really fun and new design stuff. It’s a new month and we are all feeling the fresh spring start we all love this time of year. Jess read somewhere that some people start making “new year’s” resolutions in April because it takes the pressure off of the January 1st, no-failure-allowed expectation. But three months in, you have a better sense of what you CAN realistically/want to achieve for the rest of the year. New goals are never a bad thing so we are on board. What would your April resolutions be? Should we actually just scratch the whole new year’s resolutions and just focus it monthly or quarterly? Something to definitely think about. But before you get too deep with the April resolution making, maybe read through this week’s links. Who knows, you may even get some new info that could help shape those goals? Let’s dive in and see…

Emily is a sucker for most things wellness oriented and is dying to try the Goop Glow Powder Packs, has anyone tried them? “Their vitamin packs are proof that marketing WORKS, I feel like I want/need every single one of them.”

Anthropologie recently launched A+ which has such great size-inclusive new pieces, and Arlyn will always applaud a line that doesn’t alienate woman based on their size.

The only thing Velinda’s wife wanted for her birthday after a friend described it as “the best machine she’s ever owned” was the Dyson V7 Motorhead Cord-free Stick Vacuum. According to them (and Arlyn, who has the older V6 version she says she loves so much she’d grab it in a fire), it’s amazing, lightweight, cordless/easy to use and effective…and they have dogs!

Grace and Sara are coming in hot with their new favorite mules, Violet Woven Backless Mules, from Target. They are so affordable and so comfy. Sara has them in black and Grace in the tan.

Ryann cannot stop talking about the show After Life on Netflix. She laughed, she cried hard, and ultimately fell in love with Ricky Gervais. It’s only six 30-minute episodes and is perfect for a weekend binge if she says so herself.

Jess is headed to Morocco for part of her upcoming vacation and has been non-stop dreaming about popping into the El Fenn, a stunning hotel in Marrakech. She’s pretty sure the internet gods are just listening to her conversations (obviously) but it has been all over her Instagram lately and she cannot wait to actually see it in person.

We are no strangers to the Goop podcast but when Julie listened to the episode, “Are We All Psychic?” on a drive down from the mountain house this past week, it struck a HUGE cord and she might have cried. Okay not might, she did. Yes, Julie was the one to tear up this time, not Jess. Cliff’s Notes version is yes we are and all you need is love.

Michael really loves these Comme des Garçons PLAY x Converse sneakers. They are cool, playful AND stylish. He hearts them. Once you see them, you’ll get that very cute pun. 🙂

NEW GOOD BRAND ALERT. The very talented and lovable Kate Hudson has expanded her fashion wings and just launched a super cute earth-friendly clothing company called Happy x Nature. Companies that make good-looking affordable clothing responsibly are hard to come by, so this is an exciting breath of fresh air (which will hopefully stay fresh with more companies adopting similar sustainable practices).

Arlyn, ever on the hunt for good skin, is singing (loudly) her newly found love of the REN Ready Steady AHA Glow Tonic. Hilary Duff has recently been pushing their product on Instagram, and while she normally has good self-control, she couldn’t say no to having skin like our girl Hil. Celeb endorsement or not, Arlyn is obsessed and swears in the two weeks since she’s been using it twice a day, it’s sloughed away a good 5 years off her mid-30s face and it’s made her coveted “holy grail” list of products to always have on hand. (Plus it’s vegan and cruelty-free.) 

Our WONDERFUL book styling assistant Erik has been loving this quote book, Brave Enough, he was gifted. Since it’s a book full of inspirational quotes, he says it’s great to digest it day by day one quote at a time. Giving a designated time during your busy day to reflect on some musings. And the best part is it looks bold on your nightstand in its emerald green hardback cover.

Evidently, we like to read around here. Sara just bought the book, Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis. It’s a really good window into rural white America. As these past three years have shown us more than ever, we ALL live in bubbles that need to be “popped” if we are going to be able to move forward and see where each of us is coming from.

Velinda just discovered Brene Brown and like anyone else who has seen her TED talks, loves her and her message. Velinda loved that it’s smart and research based on topics that can typically lean too self-helpy, like connectedness and the required vulnerability it takes. It’s a good reminder we all could use that it takes courage to be vulnerable and this was a good reminder of the payoff for the brave.

Speaking about TED talks (and books), Emily has been re-reading Find Your Why by Simon Sinek, who had that talk that went gangbusters nearly a decade ago (still so, so good, listen here if you haven’t). It’s all about, well, finding your “why” in your business and as a leader, and holding firm on it to ensure your team is fulfilled and constantly inspired. If you’re a manager or leader, there are so many golden nuggets here.

Lastly, we are stunned and broken hearted learning about the sudden and very unexpected death of Ryan Harter. He and his wife (and their team at Harter Creative) shot the closet org video and the Target holiday video in Portland. He was truly the sweetest person and we can’t imagine the pain his wife and two small children are in. They obviously are in need of help so if you are able, please donate anything you can to their GoFundMe.

With that said please go enjoy this day to the fullest and love your loved ones hard. See you all tomorrow. xx

    1. Agreed!

    2. Agreed! I’m so happy you mentioned this and linked to Dr. Gunter’s blog.

    3. We should be skeptical, definitely. But a lot of the medicine that doctors have been pushing at us for years — supposedly based on science — was in fact heavily influenced and financed by massive pharmaceutical companies. Between the huge influence of Big Pharma on our health (see: our national ophoid crisis) and the pseudoscience of Goop, I would argue that the latter is far less harmful than the former.

      1. Louann, I understand why you would consider the offerings of Goop and the like as an alternative to Big Pharma offerings — they market themselves that way after all! In reality they need to be held up to the same lens as pharmaceutical drugs. It was peer reviewed scientific studies that provided the data to explain why the opioid crisis is so severe and ultimately to point out the hand Purdue had in creating both the opioids and the crisis.

        Pharmaceutical companies have done horrible things in order to make fortunes. Purveyors of “natural & organic” treatments have as well. Both need to be looked at skeptically and peer reviewed science is one of our best tools to understand the truth of the claims of these for-profit companies.

        1. Rae: Yes that was my point. We need to approach ALL of these things skeptically.

          But the fact remains: MILLIONS more people have been damaged by Big Pharma and its influence on standard medicine than have EVER been damaged by Goop’s various offerings. There is just no comparison in terms of impact. Many people get outraged at Goop out of proportion to its actual impact — purely because of their reaction against the celebrity behind it.

          I’m not recommending Goop as an alternative in any way. I just think people rush to attack Paltrow/Goop while ignoring all the far more serious problems of standard medicine.

      2. I do not agree with that. Goop and people like that end up encouraging people with real diseases (with real effective treatments) to avoid treatment. One of the Drs that Goop promotes does not believe that HIV causes AIDS. This is extremely harmful.

    4. Agreed! Thanks for the comment and link.

    5. Agree 100%! Thank you for posting what I was going to say!

    6. I was only going to comment about my disappointment on the Goop recommendations…

    7. Whole lotta yeps^^

  1. Hey! I love this blog! I wanted to make sure y’all knew that none of your links have been working on the Bloglovin app for a couple of weeks now. I love this blog so much that I just switch to the Safari browser to view the links, but it would be nice if they worked in Bloglovin. When I click your links on Bloglovin it just takes me to the Google screen.

    1. Hmmm..strange. We’ll have our tech guy look into this. I’m sorry you’re having this issue!

  2. While I’m glad that Anthropologie is making their sizing more inclusive, I don’t understand why the new sizes can’t be offered as an expansion of current sizes rather than a segregated section. Why can’t women just walk into a store and see ALL of the sizes together? Or rather, why can’t women of all sizes just walk into the store and shop – most of these sizes are not available in store.

    1. CONCUR!

  3. REN forever!!! It’s an amazing product line. Secondly, Hillbilly Elegy was an excellent book and should be required reading! Educated by Tara Westover is stunning as well.
    Third, Goop….nah…

  4. I just read the mountain house kitchen posts. Inspiring and GORGEOUS GORGEOUS GORGEOUS!

  5. Praying for the Harter family for sure. We’re spring breaking with family in Sunriver OR this week and my sister and her husband (friends of the Harters) got the news. So hard.

    1. I truly just cannot imagine the pain that family must be going through. So so hard. 🙁

  6. I’d say get the Dyson v10!! It’s a little more expensive but has even more power and I am obsessed (and vacuum every day, which is highly abnormal behavior for me). It’s on sale at Costo! 🙂 And, LOVE After Life, as well. It was so heartbreaking and funny and life-affirming. SO GOOD.

  7. I read a ton of self-help books as part of my job, and Brene Brown is the ONLY writer I’ve come across with the perfect ratio of good research, genuine passion, and approachability. And I was very skeptical of her because her work is so popular.

    1. Oh I’ve never heard of her but I will check her out. I’ve been digging deep into the “self help” Podcast category lately, but I’ve been wanting to read more, so this could kill two birds.

  8. Hillbilly Elegy is so good! I read it a couple years ago and highly recommend!

  9. For those of you who enjoyed Hillbilly Elegy, I’d like to recommend you take a look at Arlie Hochschild’s Strangers In Their Own Land. JF Vance had been widely critiqued by Appalachian activists for his work, which blames Appalachian culture for the struggles of people living in the region (it’s a social science version of “blame the victim”). Hochshild’s book has been much better recieved and is based on excellent fieldwork as opposed to Vance’s work. (I concur that his book is highly readable, but it is also highly suspect). Signed, your friendly neighborhood anthropologist:)

    1. Thanks for the recommendation, I will check out the Arlie Hochschild book.

      Vance lost me when he contorted himself in knots trying to explain that, yes, hillbillies (to use his term) hate Barack Obama, but this is in NO WAY due to race. It’s just because he’s an elite! He wears a suit, speaks well and went to an Ivy League school… you know, stuff that makes him different from all the white presidents.

      It’s like he can’t see or admit to racism because doing so would mean his people are bad people, so he just removes it entirely from his equation. But you can’t do that in America (or probably anywhere). The story of white America goes hand-in-hand with the story of black America and if you’re not going to acknowledge that then you will never be able to tell a true story.

      That said the book is worth reading for anyone who is interested in exploring the topic, just, as you say, I hope people don’t pick this as their only source.

  10. Nah on GOOP. Hillbilly Elegy is excellent and great as an audiobook, FYI!

  11. Hillbilly Elegy was terrible. The author is not an Appalachian “hillbilly.” I guess his grandparents may have been, but he grew up in a city of ~50k near Cincinnati. He had terrible parents, not much money, and apparently was in a cultural void, but it sure wasn’t life in the holler.

    Perhaps those who have not had any personal contact with or knowledge of small towns, poverty, abuse, and the culture he describes will have their minds blown.

    I may have enjoyed it more for the memoir it is had expectations not been so off the mark. Instead, It feels like he attached “hillbilly” in order to give it some cultural cred that it doesn’t deserve or represent. Just because you feel like your family embodies a “hillbilly spirit” or whatever doesn’t mean that’s the life you lived.

    As for his opinions and descriptions, he can be pretty reductive. Granted, he’s still a pretty young guy, but you’d think his history and experiences would have given him more perspective and insight.

    1. Yes! You said what I came to say.

  12. I am a long time reader but never made a comment until now. I felt compelled to let you know these Link Up posts are my new favorite thing. Hearing what your super awesome team is listening to, reading, eating, and wearing is lovely. Please never stop.

  13. There are SO many of the cordless Dyson’s on the market. Which one do I buy?!?!?!

    1. I got one from CostCo (not sure which one… V7?) and I’m obsessed. I’d wager any of them would be awesome. I truly LOVE vacuuming my house now and do it 1-2 per week.

    1. yesyesyesyesyesyesyes. Dr. Gunter is my new favorite twitter follow. Also I came here to post an appeal to stop promoting Goop.

      1. allure magazine used to play this role with claims like paltrow’s for cosmetics. but i think they gave that up a couple of editors ago. glad dr. gunter if no one else is taking this snake oil saleswoman seriously.

  14. I love you all, truly, this is my favorite blog. Please know that this therefore comes from a place of love. (ominous)

    What I’m not loving is the repeated mentions of Goop on here. Goop is basically InfoWars for left-leaning (mostly) women. She is selling nonsense and lies and nothing else. It’s at best unfortunate and at worst, very dangerous.

    Please don’t take my comment as an attack, just as an appeal to take a step back and listen to what doctors and other healthcare experts are saying about Goop. Spoiler alert, it’s nothing good.

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