Welcome to Simply Liv & Co.
Olivia's Journey into Simple Living:
Like any story, mine isn't simple. Life often has it's unexpected turns- but without the plot twists, simplicity wouldn't be nearly as meaningful.
AJ and I met the summer of my sophomore year of college. We were on the same team for a mission trip to Latvia where we put on music camps for kids. That trip- and that whole summer- was surreal. I had never dated anyone before, so meeting AJ (have you SEEN that man?!) and realizing that I really wanted to date him was a new feeling to me.
Luckily he kind of liked me too. A few months after our trip we made it "Facebook official". Life was amazing- I was falling in love quickly and we soon realized that we wanted to spend our lives together.
Nine months in to our relationship though, things took an unexpected turn. What I credited as intense nerves over college midterms turned out to be morning sickness- I was pregnant.
Terrified and confused, we both had a lot of deep water to tread and a lot of hard conversations to have. Telling my family was one of the hardest moments of my entire life. I remember the looks of shock and disbelief that me- their only daughter- would be having a baby before she got married, graduated college or really had any experience "adult-ing". *Disclaimer: My family is AMAZING and showed me nothing but grace and love, but the initial conversation was unexpected to say the least.*
Though we knew we wanted to get married, we decided to wait until after the baby was born so that we could have a semi-normal wedding and so we wouldn't feel like we rushed into anything.
Fast forward a few months to the most amazing day of my life- November 27th 2013- the day I became a mother. (You can read more about that day here). I was 20 years old- I didn't even know how to hold a newborn- but there I was, completely in love with this little person who I had grown inside my body and worked tirelessly to bring into the world.
We were married three weeks after she was born with a not-so-normal, kind of spur of the moment wedding. It was only AJ, me, both our parents and the pastor. I remember not caring about my wedding (or lack there-of) as long as I got to be his wife. It made the picture feel complete. (You can see a few photos of that day here).
When Evie was 11 months old, I was pregnant again. And 9 months later- on a hot July afternoon- Mara completed our family. (Read more about her birth story here).
So why simplicity?
I believe my love of simplicity stemmed from the times when life wasn't simple at all (and when is it ever, really?). I love the fact that even in the midst of chaos an unexpected change, we can intentionally choose to simplify- to focus on the immediate moment, to cling to what really matters.
Simplicity covers every area of life- from our possessions, to the way we think, to the way we speak to our spouse. And I think a life lived with it in mind will make an impact that isn't simple in the least.
What Ethical Fashion?
I'm not one to compartmentalize my life. Once I began my journey into simple and intentional living, I was quick to analyze the other areas of my life as well, to see where I could eliminate and be more mindful.
I first heard about the "slow fashion movement" after diving deeper into the capsule wardrobe community on social media. It felt inconsistent of me to be mindful about my possessions and carefully curate each item in my limited wardrobe without caring about how it was made or who made it. I committed to shop only from ethical retailers in the Spring of 2016 and since then, an entirely new fashion industry has opened up and nothing excites me more than to see the way ethical fashion retailers and advocates are changing the world one garment at a time.
You can read more about my transition into ethical fashion here.