There’s a moment where I sit down, my legs hanging off the edge of the trail, and just breathe. I take in the view, of cliffs hundreds of meters in height and miles of water as far as I can see, of hazy atmosphere casting a blue glow over everything in sight. I feel happy, and lucky, and calm, and awe-struck, all at once. I close my eyes and can hear the waves crashing relentlessly onto the shore. I can feel the brisk wind on my cheeks and my husband’s presence to the left of me. We’ve found it together, the calmness and absence of anything other than the need to just be present and still in this sacred space.

Photography by Rebekah Burder.
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We hiked from the Cliffs of Moher Visitor Center past Hag’s Head to the peninsula. The trail is part of the Burren Way, and was an easy hike that took about 2.5 hours in total.

Our kitchen is one of my favorite spaces, but it needs a little more warmth. It feels like we have an acre of tile, and so I’ve been sourcing and purchasing rugs to break up, and add insulation to, this giant space. It’s all my plan to up the “cozy factor.” I think I’m going to use this month’s What I Love kitchen as inspiration. That rug! The tile! The copper!

Copper Kitchen Pots
Photo by Emily Anderson for Matchbook Mag.

Without any further delay…

What I Love

starring Bailey McCarthy’s Cozy Kitchen

1. Aged Rug – This rug is one of my favorites I’ve seen online! The faded look, called patina, is perfectly aged and comfortable. It’s the kind of rug that works so well in a kitchen, because you’re not upset when you drop food on it.

2. Copper Pots – This warm metal is so cheerful and welcoming. Can you just see a pot of stew bubbling away in one of these pots. I can!

3. Personalized Cutting Board – I don’t typically like monogrammed items, but this cutting board is such a cute, and understated, way to add personality into a kitchen.

4. Upscale Trolley – Trolleys are the new kitchen island for small spaces. The marble top and sturdy frame of this upscale version keep it from being too lightweight, providing extra counter space and storage without taking up as much room in a smaller galley kitchen.

5. Green Cabinets – Forest green isn’t a color that’s used frequently in interior design. It’s too heavy and hard to work with, but these cabinets. My, oh my. They hit just the right note in this kitchen, without being too overwhelming.


Finding Hygge

Have you seen this pin? I had no idea there existed a word like komorebi (one of my husband’s favorite things). It reminded me of hygge, a Danish word that can’t really be translated into English. Cozy is the closest we can come. It means the “complete absence of anything annoying, irritating, or emotionally overwhelming, and the presence of and pleasure from comforting, gentle, and soothing things.” It’s also called gemütlichkeit in German.

Setting Up For Fall
Photography by Rebekah Burder.

I need some hygge in my life. Those long nights with friends and laughter, or spent at home in front of the fire with a cup of tea. Simple dinners and crafts. Candles lit to brighten the dark nights. Hiking in the woods while holding the hand of the man I love. Comfort foods. Ciders. Fall flowers. Walking in my wellies down a country lane, kicking through leaves in my backyard. It sounds like bliss to me.

October is the perfect month to seek out and create hygge, I think.  As we begin the turn into colder weather and more time spent indoors. I’m inviting you to take the journey with me! Spend a few minutes walking around your own home, looking for the warmth and cozy, the simple pleasures, and hygge in your own life.


Ikea Standing Desk
Photography by Rebekah Burder.

Can we all just agree that September has been a CRAZY month? Whether it’s end-of-summer travel, back-to-school mayhem, or just adjusting to the changes in seasons, the past month has blitzed by in a blur of half-made plans. We just ended a 10-day visit with Frank’s parents, and have a three day break until our next houseguest.


Such is the life we’ve chosen, the life we’re happy to be living, but it’s been hard maintaining the balance between work and life. I’m afraid the blog has suffered for it. I’ve had to delete or delay a lot of plans as I focused on family and client work. I’m hoping to get back into the routine this week, checking things off my multiple lists, and giving it all I have.

Instead of doing a list of posts, I’m going to pass on information for accessing it through the archives. You can find all of this month’s content by clicking on the tag: Work + Life

For other types of content, like interesting articles and pretty images, follow me on:

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Work + Travel

Organized Magazines
Photography by Nicky Ryan for Est Magazine.

We travel or host guests roughly 3 months out of the year. Most of it is for business, but we still need to meet deadlines and work on multiple projects at the same time. Frank has become something of a work while traveling expert. I, however, am still trying to find that balance between all of my projects and spending time with our guests and family. It’s a process in progress…Here’s what I’ve learned so far:

Reduce what you can

The core of Julie Morgenstern’s time management program consists of four actions: delete, delay, delegate, and diminish. This works especially well when preparing for a trip. Reduce whatever you can before, then delay the unimportant until after the trip.

Schedule as much as possible

This works perfectly with blogging. I typically schedule my posts out for the time that we are gone. I spend a day or two before the trip creating and shooting several projects at once. Then edit the photos and schedule as needed.

Be flexible

When we’re attending conferences, we schedule enough free time where we can still have a few hours to work each day. If we’re caught up, we have free time to be spent networking or with family.

How do you maintain the balance between work and travel?