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Open Hearted Holidays: Boundary Work for Better Family Gatherings

Before our move from Texas to Germany, I had never really come home for the holidays before. Now that I have had the experience to, even briefly, leave my home community and return for a visit, I feel like I’m gaining a better understanding of the intention behind so many little behaviors in my family…

Three Reasons Why Moms Need a Mindfulness Practice (& How to Start Your Own!)

A Note from Lilly: When I first met Azia, I was so struck by her beauty. Azia not only is just textbook gorgeous, she has an attractiveness about her where you feel like she’s hugging you through her smile. She is grounded in her peace and energized by her purpose. And as I stood talking…

Hi, I’m Lilly

Welcome to my place to chronicle my adventures in learning to live more open-heartedly with my family and the my community as I create a home that’s an oasis for our family’s authenticity and creativity.

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Posts That Mean A Lot To Us

OPEN HEARTED HOME BLOG

the best book box sets for kids

The Best Boxed Book Sets for Children

Here we are at such a special time of year, when the weather is just right to think about the joy of reading at home and gift giving season is starting to trickle in. I love discovering new books with my daughter. I’ve found also, for big birthdays or school milestones, the fun of sharing…

Living the American Dream (in Germany)

I don’t want to speak for everyone, but there seems to be a collective existential thing going on. There’s just a lot to consider with how much is both possible and falling apart.  For some, it feels like angst, maybe depression or bouts of panic. For some it’s their new era to be excited, empowered…

what to buy at the germany apotheke

What to Buy at the Germany Apotheke

Being from Texas, I know my way around makeup. It was once a printed statistic that our neighborhood Neiman Marcus sold more tubes of lipstick a year than anywhere else in the world. (Tales are also oversized in Texas, but by my family’s and friends’ known contributions alone, I can see it.) I think that’s…

Fall Hygge from Etsy

As someone who has spent most of my life in Texas, there’s almost a thrill in the Wild West’s distaste for following seasonal weather. I’ve gone swimming on Thanksgiving and Easter, worn a t-shirt and watched it snow on Christmas Day. Be ready for anything and you’ll be fine is really how it’s done there,…

shady villa hotel salado

Shady Villa Hotel in Salado, Texas

It was such a dream to be home to Texas for the summer. There’s my home, the one my family’s lived in since we moved back to Dallas when I was in the fourth grade, following a stint abroad. The minute we turn into our neighborhood on the drive in from the airport, I feel…

twa hotel

TWA Hotel with Kids (and Dogs)

As we were moving from the USA to Germany, everything was its own big step: list the house, sell the things inside, narrow down the bags. A very ominous one for me was getting everyone in the air. Traveling with an eight-year-old and two dogs internationally, I am so glad we decided to break up…

kids gifts on etsy under $25

Etsy Gifts Under $25: Kids Edition

Especially now that we live out of town, I delight in few things more than spoiling my nieces and nephew by mail. I remember being so excited to get a package from an out-of-town aunt or grandparent growing up. It seems like the cost of an average children’s gift is rising these days. Honestly though,…

baden baden germany hotels

Baden Baden, Germany Hotels and Restaurants

The Fourth of July weekend was the perfect time for an expat escape. Just a ninety minute train from Freiburg, it was such a treat to cut out solo and spend a weekend checking out Baden Baden, Germany hotels, restaurants and spas. Shop the Look JavaScript is currently disabled in this browser. Reactivate it to…

how to make a german school cone

How to Make a German School Cone

I know and I cannot believe that we are thinking about Back to School again. I am never the one to start these conversations, as you can usually find me at the pool feeding my family sandwiches until 9:00 p.m. the day before The Big Day. As much as it pains me, I think our…

ikea erktorp slipcover

IKEA Erktorp Slipcovers and Other Ways to Fancy Up a Rental

When I first considered moving from Texas to Germany, I pictured us in a chateau with vintage wood beams on the ceiling, an upstairs and downstairs and sprawling backyard. Hey, it could happen. The German housing market continues to humble those of us who flock to her nature and care, but I’m here for the…

Between Protests

As we round the corner into late July, I am resentful.  In the rhythm of life, I view deep summer as the season of adrenal reset for Mothers. The children are feral, they eat fresh food off the vines with their bare hands half naked outside and run wild until they pass out. To touch…

how to make grocery flowers look nice

How to Make Grocery Store Flowers Look Nice

On Fridays in Dallas, my favorite thing was Markus walking in the door from the grocery store with two drinks for us from the coffee bar, a paper bag filled with supplies for his amazing nachos and a cello wrapped bouquet of flowers poking out of the top. They mean everything and brighten up the…

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