Instagrams

  • This time last year I took my first road trip up California's 395 through the eastern Sierra mountains. I went on to Mammoth, Truckee and Yosemite.

It was epic.

The highlights for me were Bodie (Check out my highlights for "ghost town"), Mammoth (reminded me of the Canadian Rockies), and seeing the Donner Party Memorial/area.

It's a super hard state to live in, but it sure is beautiful. (PS: I made a Spotify playlist for just the drive: http://bit.ly/mountainroad).
  • I posted this in stories but  got so many comments I had to post it here.

I'd read an article which said how common an electric kettle is in the UK/AU but not in America. 
This was so interesting to me because my kettle is probably my most used appliance. But when I stay in homes here I can never find one.

A lot of Americans told me they use their microwave for hot water or they have a stove top.

And @astridpiepschyk explained it had to do with voltage. "Most Americans don’t own an electric kettle because the electricity voltage is too low to power a kettle effectively. In Australia, UK the voyage is 240, but in America it’s 110, and not very effective in boiling an electric kettle. It works, but takes a long time. This is why stove kettles are much more common." So what started as a post about how I love my half shelf for teacups in my 1930s cupboards turned into a great cultural and scientific conversation.

This is why I love Instagram 😀
 #hyggehouse
  • Ten years ago I moved to Philadelphia to build Anthropologies first Social Media, Content and Community programs.

It was a dream come true for two reasons. One I loved the company and two I was moving in July which meant I'd have an east coast fall.

It did not disappoint.

I spent every weekend out in nature with rosy cheeks, drinking hot apple cider. All this time later, that fall is still one of my favourite s and I miss it every year.

PS: the last photo is my old garage on my one acre property in Chestnut Hill. I had an 18th century stone home which I loved. I don't think I ever really wrote about this place because i never really settled in. Something I wish I'd done but I was just so consumed with work.
  • I like taking photos at Disneyland that don't look like Disneyland.
  • This is my aunt on my french fathers side. During WWII, she got tuberculosis and was sent to a sanatorium to recover.

To pass time, she and her other young female friends would doll up, take photos and send them plus letters to soldiers to flirt with. Some they knew, some they didn't. Like old-fashioned Bumble. 😀
She was incredibly smart, witty, and fierce. In this photo she was full of possibilities and hope.

She married soon after to an abusive alcoholic, had four sons and quickly got trapped by circumstance and the era.

She was my favourite family member even though I didn't see her that often. I have one hand written letter from her and this photo which are the few family things I have.

I loved her because she always listened to me - patiently and sincerely. She saw who I really was and was so kind about it and oddly relatable. She gave me direction without advice. She laughed often, was direct when needed and sometimes acted soft. She was the only one who ever called me sweetie (my family nickname at the time was Chuck! and my family never used soft names with each other. So sweetie felt so amazingly special). I had 5 other aunts but I called her just "Aunty" as she defined them all. It was only to her that I felt a connection, unconditional love and a sense of family.

Her situation was always pitiful and dire,  but she never acted like a victim. When I saw her on her deathbed she was so small, weak and wilted from a hard life. But somehow she had always given me courage and strength, as if to say to be the possibilities she couldn't be.

Recently I hung out with my two young adult nieces and they both just called me "Aunty." Not Aunty Alex or Alex. Just Aunty.

It made me feel so special and like we have formed the same bonds that I had with my own Aunty. And that I was now being to them what she was to me. 
But more importantly, they helped me change my idea of her - the one that she never accomplished something. 
Because she did. 
She taught me how to be a good Aunty - one of my favourite things to be. That's her legacy which I think is really beautiful.

Well, that and dressing up when you feel poorly. 😀
  • The @ojaivalleyinn is one of my favourite places either for a day trip or an overnight. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I always go when I need supreme rest and healing because I really really get that here. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
There's something so magic and calming about Ojai and this place taps into it so perfectly. And they have the best massages.

My recs? Avoid weekends and holidays. It's insane and the spa isn't as relaxing because it's just so overcrowded.

For rooms, avoid the ones above Libby's Market/Pub (I think they are the original rooms). They're just louder & smaller. ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀
I've had a suite with a patio, bedroom and fireplace down by the spa that was heaven and I've had a larger room by the main restaurant (I can't remember that buildings name) and both were amazing. This past room was in the Topa building which is their main building and it was really lovely (and had a balcony overlooking the golf course). ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I've  been here with girlfriends, alone, on retreats with work and loved all the experiences. I know a lot of people who come here with kids (@couldihavethat has a recent post in IG and her blog on why it's great for families) and it's also totally dog friendly (@ScoutStCharming has been). ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ ⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀⠀ I  paid for my room 😀 and received zero things for free. So not am ad, just sharing what I love.
  • I found hope in Hope thanks to nature and my nieces.
  • Possibilities.
  • "After you have exhausted what there is in business, politics, conviviality, and so on - have found that none of these finally satisfy, or permanently wear - what remains? Nature remains." Happy 200th birthday, Walt Whitman
  • Spring is always the most alive after the darkest and rainiest of winters. #hyggehouse
  • "There are far, far better things ahead than any we leave behind." C. S. Lewis. Or, as the Secret Sisters sang, "Tomorrow will be kinder."

Instagrams

Everyday Hygge

Living well is more than organic fruit.

January 1, 2017

Please go out there and do. Live. Don’t be the same as yesterday. Don’t live vicariously online. Don’t use language that has no meaning or talk ideas you don’t really live. Don’t hide. Don’t copy others or live their ideas or life. Don’t fear doing your thing. Don’t fear doing. Instead of reading another decorating magazine, paint that room. Instead of thinking of baking, make that cake. Instead of watching another beauty haul blog, go out and run, walk, bike or say enough. Put that self help book down and pick up yourself.

Let go of the snark, your worries, your anger and fear and give into possibility, action, joy and life. Do. Then do some more. Stop thinking about you. Stop blogging about just you and your kid and your pet. There’s a world out there to connect to, really connect to and texting doesn’t count.

Being of use is far more important than being popular. Think about the single parent on your block, the young persons struggling to find a job, the old man fallen on the street. Think about politics, the environment, healthcare, another country, cultures, and your community. Then do something about it. Never stop at thinking.

Dream big, work harder. Have lots of fun. Cheer your friends on. Cheer yourself up. Celebrate as much as possible – even just a good cup of coffee. Enjoy everything. Right now. It’s OK to want more and do more but be present with where you are or who you are with. Don’t rush the situation – even if it’s bad. Move on when you can. Don’t settle. Try everything you can and get over everything holding you back.

Go outside. Go outside yourself. Make a difference, make some change. Don’t complain about someone unless you’re willing to say it to that someone. Don’t complain about a situation you’re not willing to make better. They don’t have it better and you don’t have it worse. Don’t make excuses. You’ll never see possibility if you do. And you’re smart and worth more than settling for a life of complaining and limitation.

Hope. Hope more. Give someone else hope. Get healthy and contribute to a healthy environment. Think about everything you do, you buy, you say. Only be lazy on Sunday and even then, be conscious. Rest is useful, giving up is not.

Live with a light heart. Play more. Remember what it’s like to be seven. Remember to listen to a seven year old because you just have more words and life experience, not necessarily more wisdom. Have more questions than answers and don’t put everything into words. Sometimes just feel things and be. Be quiet more often, listen harder, talk exactly as you mean to.

Strive for your best and not what you think someone else’s best is. Follow through. Don’t let others down. Don’t let yourself down. You are better than your circumstances. Ask for what you’re worth. Make magic happen, don’t wish for it. Don’t envy others lives, envy yours. Live it fully. Teach by example how to live well, how to be treated, how to be kind, how to be alive.

Do. I can’t stress that one enough. Take action on your life. Make the change. No more sulking, waiting, thinking, reading, talking about.

It’s time. You’re ready.

(Originally published on June 2008. Re-published because sometimes we all need a little reminder, including myself)

  • Reply
    RebeccaNo Gravatar
    June 2, 2008 at 6:19 PM

    This is a wonderful reminder and so inspiring. Thank you!

  • Reply
    LorissaNo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 2:44 AM

    Yes Yes! Such an inspiring post. Thank you for these really important reminders.

  • Reply
    annieNo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 3:38 AM

    Thanks, I needed that!

  • Reply
    < ANo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 6:42 AM

    .thank you.

  • Reply
    AriannaNo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 1:04 PM

    Love it! I want to post this on my wall is BOLD letters! Thanks! 🙂

  • Reply
    Fabulous Advice « Glow From Within
    June 3, 2008 at 1:18 PM

    […] they are simple and brilliant and deserve to maintain their integrity – check out http://www.hyggehouse.com to view the complete blog. I would love to post this excerpt in big bold font on my wall. […]

  • Reply
    Fabulous Advice a la Alex Beachamp « Joie De Vivre Lifestyle Design
    June 3, 2008 at 1:22 PM

    […] they are simple and brilliant and deserve to maintain their integrity – check out http://www.hyggehouse.com to view the complete blog. I would love to post this excerpt in big bold font on my wall. […]

  • Reply
    AliNo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 4:16 PM

    Amen.

  • Reply
    jen paddack-hydeNo Gravatar
    June 3, 2008 at 9:59 PM

    I LOVED this. I even printed it out and stuck it up onthe bulletin board next to my desk. Completely resonated with me. Thank YOU for the inspiration:)

  • Reply
    SueNo Gravatar
    June 4, 2008 at 5:43 AM

    Totally, totally agree. Brilliant.

  • Reply
    michelleNo Gravatar
    June 4, 2008 at 11:42 AM

    i absolutely LOVE this. thank you. thank you. thank you.

  • Reply
    Wow…just…WOW! « Tomorrow May Rain
    June 4, 2008 at 3:08 PM

    […] Posted on June 4, 2008 by J This is fabulous post. Read it. Be it. Live […]

  • Reply
    MelissaNo Gravatar
    June 5, 2008 at 9:27 AM

    This is just what I needed to hear today. Thank you for your encouraging words.

  • Reply
    Katrina BergNo Gravatar
    June 8, 2008 at 3:14 AM

    Thank you Alex, thank you. Lately i’ve been contemplating how to find joy and balance every day. I believe there are bits of it that can be found, some that we must discover through our own learning and getting out there, and then pieces of joy that can only be developed through our own actions. Still working on it, just curious if anyone else is seeking this…:)

  • Reply
    ingaNo Gravatar
    June 9, 2008 at 2:43 PM

    This post has inspired me in so many ways! I loved it when I read it on your other site. 🙂 Thanks for writing such an amazing entry.

  • Reply
    Felicia Sullivan - Author, Foodie, Rockstar » » Blog Archive » Is Google Making Us Stupid?
    June 12, 2008 at 5:49 AM

    […] So while my job involves pounding at the keys and clicking, I’m learning to step away from the computer after hours and as Alex says: do. do. do. […]

  • Reply
    Hygge House : Live Well. Live Simple. Live Hygge. » Blog Archive » This Way to Vacation
    June 12, 2008 at 2:46 PM

    […] long, long time. I came back energised, creative, and passionate about really connecting again and living my manifesto. It seems much easier to do when all the crap is removed from one’s head and all you have […]

  • Reply
    french toast girlNo Gravatar
    June 12, 2008 at 5:49 PM

    Yes, yes, yes. ♥

  • Reply
    Hygge HouseNo Gravatar
    June 12, 2008 at 6:37 PM

    Wow, I’m so shocked and wonderfully amazed at how this post was received. I was really, really uncertain about posting it here because I thought people might think it was preachy or ask where the home decor links are 🙂

    But this just literally poured out (written as is) after really thinking about how I live and all the emails people send to me asking how do I live, how do I do it etc. And also with all the frustrations I have with people who just talk about things and never do them or just don’t live life or don’t do the right things because they think it’s too hard (it’s not). So thank you to everyone who responded to this. I call this my personal manifesto and if it suits you, you’re welcome to call it yours.

  • Reply
    AriannaNo Gravatar
    June 12, 2008 at 9:29 PM

    Thank you Alex – this personal manifesto, along with a few other events, conspired to allow me to pick up and make a long needed change. I’m driving from California to Mid-Coast Maine and plan to spend the summer enjoying the slow, sweet pace of Camden. I’m soo excited both for the x-country travels and for the change of scenery.

  • Reply
    Our Green NestNo Gravatar
    June 13, 2008 at 10:55 AM

    Very inspiring…thank you!

  • Reply
    maryNo Gravatar
    June 13, 2008 at 1:29 PM

    Amazing, inspring, and something I really needed to read. This one’s a keeper.

  • Reply
    MelissaNo Gravatar
    June 14, 2008 at 5:19 PM

    This was the most inspiring blog entry I have ever read! Thank you so much for sharing! I think I am gonna have to print a copy of this to pin to my cork board!

  • Reply
    ClaudiaNo Gravatar
    June 15, 2008 at 9:03 AM

    Yes, I´m ready!!!

  • Reply
    The Lil BeeNo Gravatar
    June 15, 2008 at 4:40 PM

    I needed this.

  • Reply
    Shelly G.No Gravatar
    June 16, 2008 at 10:51 PM

    One of the best blogs I have read in awhile… Thank you for sharing it with all of us…

  • Reply
    Hygge House : Live Well. Live Simple. Live Hygge. » Blog Archive » Where to?
    June 18, 2008 at 4:56 PM

    […] forward me a link to Dolly Parton’s “Better Get To Living” video after reading my manifesto. If you liked what I wrote, then here’s the theme […]

  • Reply
    jennifer :: themakeloungeNo Gravatar
    June 19, 2008 at 1:58 PM

    Lovely post, thanks!

  • Reply
    SusanNo Gravatar
    June 25, 2008 at 1:19 PM

    I think this is my most favorite post of yours. I’m printing it out and will keep it forever. I love it. Thank you!

  • Reply
    violetismycolorNo Gravatar
    June 26, 2008 at 7:17 PM

    (found you through another blog) This was wonderful and profound. I love the thought you put into this. And I totally agree with everything here. I do appreciate being reminded, though.

  • Reply
    theory - live like alex « the daily delights
    August 1, 2008 at 11:37 PM

    […] from Alex Beauchamp’s personal manifesto.  If you are feeling inspired, read the whole entry here.  Alex is amazing, thought provoking, […]

  • Reply
    ValerieNo Gravatar
    September 26, 2008 at 6:20 AM

    Thank you for this! I have this posted on my fridge as a daily reminder 🙂

  • Reply
    this week’s blog crush « The Misadventures of Kelly and Kelly
    December 13, 2008 at 12:29 AM

    […] This post is so true, it rings especially important in my eyes lately. I’m trying to do better, be better, do more, be more.  I’m trying to make those memories for my children instead of just think about making them. […]

  • Reply
    sonrieNo Gravatar
    December 15, 2008 at 10:09 AM

    Oh yes. Quite wonderful – thank you. 🙂

  • Reply
    Jé MaverickNo Gravatar
    December 21, 2008 at 11:30 AM

    I know it is an older post, but I had to comment. Thank you for taking the time to write this. And whatever inspired you to write it, may the universe be thanked for that also.

  • Reply
    Hygge House » Blog Archive » Waves of Change
    January 20, 2009 at 3:13 PM

    […] I wrote the post “Living Well isn’t just about Organic Fruit” the response was overwhelming but I wonder, how many of us live by what we were inspired by? […]

  • Reply
    gretchenNo Gravatar
    August 21, 2009 at 12:31 PM

    this is lovely. i think i should read it daily.

  • Reply
    StephanieNo Gravatar
    September 17, 2009 at 9:01 AM

    Absolutely beautiful! As with the other commenters, it was such perfect timing for me to “accidentally” find it today. Thank you. I’ll be putting it on my fridge to share with all.

  • Reply
    susan // fleurishingNo Gravatar
    April 14, 2015 at 6:45 AM

    Inspiring! (and a great reminder to re-share content).

  • Reply
    GailNo Gravatar
    December 1, 2015 at 5:05 PM

    Amen

  • Reply
    Cat BrodieNo Gravatar
    October 21, 2016 at 9:20 AM

    Just discovered your blog and this is exactly what I needed to read. I shall be printing this out and reading it regularly as a reminder to actually LIVE…

  • Reply
    MarkNo Gravatar
    February 28, 2017 at 10:40 AM

    Love this. Thanks so much for re-posting. It captures everything I ever want to rant at people about when I see them sharing their every action of Facebook.

  • Reply
    Lindsay BNo Gravatar
    March 5, 2017 at 1:11 PM

    Thank you for reposting, I just discovered your blog a few weeks ago. These words really spoke to me!

  • Reply
    DimanaNo Gravatar
    April 2, 2017 at 1:46 AM

    Words I live by. Thank you!

  • Reply
    NinaNo Gravatar
    August 28, 2017 at 3:15 PM

    I just found your site. I finally found a term to match my philosophy on life. I had no idea I was almost there. Your words ring true and I am sharing your blog. This is possible to achieve. Thank you beautiful lady

  • Reply
    AdderleyNo Gravatar
    October 1, 2017 at 2:29 PM

    Really, really appreciated this today. I read it first last night and went to bed pondering it over. When I woke up this morning, I made my usually cup of tea, then came back and reread! It helped me to gather my thoughts, especially during a season where everything has begun to change around me. I felt calm and focused. Even a little determined! I stretched and then went for a long run, my first since moving to my new lodgings. So I wanted to thank you for this entry and others. I’ll definitely be coming back to revisit many more times in the future.

  • Reply
    OlaNo Gravatar
    November 7, 2019 at 5:54 AM

    thanks for this

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