I've been excited about this Coffee Date for weeks! Rachel Cox is the girl behind Oh, Simple Thoughts, an encouraging space where she shares little snapshots of her life - thoughts, recipes, projects (and some really amazing giveaways!) I had been following along with Rachel for a few months when an email from her popped up in my inbox, just to say hello and cheer me on with Elle & Company. Needless to say, this girl is thoughtful, sincere, and oh-so encouraging.
What better way to end this fun, full week at Elle & Company than to share a Coffee Date with a sweet, new friend?
What's in your coffee cup this morning?
Well I wish I could say it was something super fancy, like a caramel latte, or a cappucino, but it is some really great strong plain coffee that I made in my French Press. I recently signed up for a monthly subscription of coffee through a company called Sweet Aroma Coffee. The owner is a blog friend, Christin. Anyways, she and her husband have started this business to help bring women out of sex trafficking and the money they make selling coffee goes towards that goal. So while my coffee is just plain Jane regular coffee, I feel super humbled to get to drink coffee that is bring used for such an awesome gospel oriented mission!
Describe a day-in-the-life of Rachel Cox.
I work full time for a new church plant in our city. However, because it is a new church plant and really small, my job changed every month it seems. So right now during the summer while college students are gone (we live in a college town and most of my normal work is with them), my mornings consist of running (occasionally), drinking coffee, playing with Piper the pup, and catching up on some reading. I always help my husband, Ben, get his lunch packed for work, and then I hit the ground running with blog stuff, design projects, and errands. I do a lot of work with the families in our church so on an average day I may go to the pool or park with a family and help with their kids, or I may go babysit while a mom runs errands... basically, I wear many hats, and I really love it that way!
Your blog is one of my favorites to follow along with. How did you get into the blogging scene?
Honestly, it just kinda happened. I started blogging off and on in college, and never really stuck with it. But then when Ben and I got engaged, I created Oh, Simple Thoughts as a way to keep up with our engagement. Slowly my blog turned into more than that and became a hobby for me. Since then I have just fallen in love with the creative outlet of blogging. I have discovered so much about myself and my passions through being a part of the blog world!
Life has a tendency to get busy and stressful. How do you simplify?
Amen, it does get so busy, and now that we have just recently added a puppy to our life, my schedule has gotten turned upside down. That is a whole different conversation though, all I will say is think of a puppy the way you would a baby... there are very few differences on a basic level... they both need so much taking care of initially!
Simplifying... well, I have begun this week to create a capsule wardrobe. AHH! So I have been purging my closet, and throwing out SO MUCH. It has been really hard and uncomfortable for me, but I am loving the simplicity of having a few go to outfits, better defining my style and not letting my wardrobe cause me stress and anxiety every day! I will be sharing about this whole process in the months ahead on my blog!
As a fellow designer, do you have any words of wisdom on why design is so important?
Well, to put it very simply, I think life is meant to be beautiful, and design aids in that. I think that often times emotions, feelings, and thoughts are difficult to put into words, but they can be expressed easily through creativity and art such as design, architecture, painting... etc. The Lord really longs to have us use our unique gifts to bring him glory, and to demonstrate beauty in this world, so for me designing pretty things is just a little tiny snapshot of the Lord!
You post so many delicious recipes on Oh, Simple Thoughts. If you could learn to make any dish, what would it be?
Well, a month ago that dish would have been risotto, but I have conquered that one, so I just want to learn how to make it better, and try different varieties. I think the recipe I am longing to learn is my grandmother's homemade sweet pickles. She passed away last summer but gave me the original recipe written by her mother before she died. The pickles take two months to make, and the reason I have yet to try them is because the recipe is written with instructions like, "let cucumbers soak in brine until it can float an egg"...what?! So super vague and mildly confusing... but it is on my list to try, and I will master them one day!
Jake is joining me on this last question. The first year of marriage can be hilarious. Are you and Ben willing to share any good stories?
Oh marriage, and life with a boy. I could keep you here all day telling you stories I bet. One funny one - The night after we got back from our honeymoon and were staying in our house for the first time together right before we were going to bed, I noticed Ben putting his shoes on and getting his keys out...I was kinda confused but didn't say anything. He started walking to the door and was like, "do you want me to walk you out to your car to say good night?"... I just looked at him and said, "Um...I live here too now." It was a super funny moment, and we still laugh about it. The adjustment to married life is sweet, funny, and hard sometimes!
If you were to sneak a peek at my Daybook Planner, you would find at least two coffee dates penciled in each week. Not only do I love a good excuse to get my Starbucks fix; I soak up spending an hour (or three) of one-on-one time with the sweetest, most encouraging ladies I know.
Each Friday, I bring that same laid back atmosphere and warm conversation to the blog and introduce you to some of my favorite people. These women are all in different seasons of life, they come from different backgrounds, and they have great stories and wisdom to share. My hope is that you'll walk away feeling encouraged like I do each time I'm around them.
So grab your favorite mug, pull out your Daybook, and pencil us in for Friday mornings. We now have a standing coffee date!