THIS BIG MAGICAL THING CALLED LIFE

Uncategorized

“Because everything that is supposed to happen will happen, is already happening, or has already happened.” — Maggie Nelson

 Chelsey Duckworth & Christina Justiz Roush 

Chelsey Duckworth & Christina Justiz Roush 

We have spent the better part of 2016 working behind the scenes to bring life to an idea that caught both of us by our hearts and wouldn’t let go: a communal workspace dedicated to supporting women. This shared space would offer Bellocq Tea, a childcare center, computers and chargers, a café, a backyard for hosting community events, and so much more. The design would be all pale woods and clean lines, velvet couches, and ceramic mugs. And, most importantly, it would be a dedicated space for women to work, connect, and inspire one and other.

We invested in market research (as many of you remember), wrote a business plan, designed a presentation deck, set up meetings with investors, and Chelsey began planning a move across the country to join Christina in LA. Then, something wonderful happened. Christina’s husband, Chris, got offered the job of a lifetime up in Silicon Valley. This was a truly awesome thing. But, it also meant that our female-focused coworking space in Los Angeles was indefinitely put on pause. This broke our hearts. Over the summer, while Christina looked at homes in Palo Alto and San Francisco, Chelsey began thriving at work in New York and larger opportunities started coming her way. Things got hard and wonderful all at the same time.

What we are about to share was not an easy decision to make. There was most certainly tears on both sides of the country.There were long emails, fits and starts, bandaids presented, obligations weighed, more tears, and ultimately the clink of champagne glasses as we bravely decided to heed our own advice and listen to what the universe was asking us to do.

For the time being and the foreseeable future, we will be stepping away from Girl Gift Gather.

What this means is not exactly clear. We haven’t ironed out all the details (despite our best efforts over the last few weeks).  There is still heartbreak and confusion here. The truth is, this isn’t just about Christina moving or Chelsey’s work becoming a priority. This is about creativity and joy. It’s about inspiration and dedication. It’s about turning something you love, love, love into work, work, work. We are so very sure that one day it will all make sense. That we will look back and laugh at our silly mistakes and wonder at our big ideas. But, all we know now is that we need to let go.

Some Saturdays, this beautiful little newsletter is an incredibly inspirational and forward-focused space, other days, it’s all about the mess that is the heart. Today, we offer you the latter. Today, we are present and honest, and still in that most uncomfortable of places – the truth. We can’t wrap this ending up in a beautiful bow for all of you.

It is a hard job to try and make something work when the universe has other plans in mind. We imagine that most of you know exactly what we’re talking about; that you too have toiled over whether to fight harder or to let go of a project or a job or a relationship. Some of you may be in that very situation right now. It is not an easy spot to be in. And yet, this paradox is at the crux of so many things in our lives. Maybe this email will scare you. Maybe it will inspire you. Maybe it’s just nice to know that you’re not in this alone. Letting go is not always the answer. But for us, in this moment, it is. All we can say is trust yourself, trust your instincts, trust this big, magical thing called life. That it is working for you, not against you. And that you are being led, even though it might feel like you are walking in the dark. 

The most important thing we can do today is thank you. We are so incredibly grateful to each and every one of you for reading this newsletter every Saturday morning, for visiting our blog, for watching our episodes, and most importantly for sharing your wisdom, experiences, and support with us every step of the way. Doing this with you has changed our lives.
  

Please keep in touch! We would love to hear from you. We will both be around, working on exciting projects and continuing this life of creativity and learning. We will definitely keep you posted!

Have yourselves an extra beautiful weekend!

Love always & forever,

C+C  

#LessonImAlwaysLearning | CASEY BENJAMIN

Uncategorized

To really live:

I have had cancer twice — cervical, then lung. I am 42 years old. I meditate, eat right, I don’t smoke, I do pilates, I walk everywhere, I smile a lot — cancer was not part of the equation. Each time I was diagnosed with cancer I thought I was going to die. 

When you go through chemo you’ve got toxic nerve gas running through your veins. I turned gray, lost every hair on my body and looked like a corpse.

When you become a survivor you either go back to where you came from or you choose to head in a new direction. Round one, went back. Round two, got out of Dodge. 

I quit my job, got a divorce, sold the house, fell in love, started Juju Supply Co., cut my hair, got a new tattoo and travelled a lot. Cancer gave me the courage to start over. 

Today I walk my kids to school even though they can walk themselves. I hug my friends all the time and touch their arms and stroke their hair. I buy marigolds whenever I see them. I eat dark chocolate for breakfast when I feel like it. I lay on the couch reading the paper in the middle of the day. 

And, sometimes I cry at night for the fear of things coming in threes. 

But, no matter what, I will never, not ever, live an inauthentic life again. So, thank you cancer, you enabled me to really live.


Casey Benjamin is the co-founder of Juju Supply Co. Juju Supply Co. celebrates the true origin of jewelry, objects of adornment that carry meaning and significance. Like the wedding ring, there’s power in the jewelry you wear every day—power to remind you of who you are and who you want to be, of where you’re going and where you’ve been, of the people you love, and the protection, tranquility, and support they offer.

A BEAUTIFUL WEEKEND

Uncategorized
 Image via  Cubicle Refugee

Image via Cubicle Refugee

Weekend are we glad ever glad to see you! Here’s to relaxing, enjoying, and finding the beauty in all of it. 

Pinksourcing!

Happily ever after? 

On our fall reading list: The Mothers

Adventures in India

This campaign is genius. 

Emma Watson takes a stand.

This is the best. 

Amy’s Faves. 

A beautiful blog.

A beautiful podcast.

A beautiful woman

Have a beautiful weekend! 

A Beautiful Weekend

Uncategorized
 Image via  Honestly WTF

Image via Honestly WTF

A kingdom of girls

Making sure their voices are heard

Where’s my trophy at?

The Supers!

Can’t a girl get a sick day?

Solange Knowles on belonging

An open letter to managers of women.

Tea time (finally!). 

The bitch. (Reminds us of Tina Fey’s wise words…”bitches get stuff done.”)

A self-compassion how-to

Advice from a woman with 101 years of experience

New doesn’t have to be stormy

Also, how to make the super cool jeans up top. 

A beautiful brand.

A beautiful podcast.

A beautiful woman

Have a beautiful weekend!

A Beautiful Weekend

Uncategorized
 Image via  racked.com

Image via racked.com

Color in Crescent City. (This is seriously so beautiful – see pic above for examples of the magic!). 

For the back to school set. 

10 reasons you should never get a job

Cheers?

The most enlightened teen on TV. 

Women I could be.

Dear Bobbi Brown,

How to write yourself out of a funk. We wrote a little on this and you can read it right here

Beauty boss

A beautiful book.

A beautiful podcast.

A beautiful woman

Have a beautiful weekend! 

BREAD & BUTTER

Uncategorized

Here we are already the end of summer. Is it just us, or did the time fly? Nothing happened. Everything happened. It was all over so quickly. Looking back, it feels like some strange blur; a mess of over-air-conditioned offices and eagerly anticipated beach days. Perhaps what stands out most about this summer is the sweet joy of picking up a pint of blueberries each Saturday morning at the local farmer’s market. Unlike our plans, which changed frequently, and our moods, so often at the mercy of the city’s heat waves, these tart treats crowded together in their soft, green cardboard boxes each week without fail. And, just as consistently, we devoured them in one sitting, often before we ever reached the front door.

There is something so quotidian about this. And yet, it is just as beautiful as a day traversing the streets of Rome. How is that possible?

We dedicate ourselves to newness, change, and growth time and time again, but what about the small, beautiful moments that only come from daily practice and, dare we say, monotony? Our fear tells us that the mundane is the enemy; it is a desert for our hearts and our minds. But, honestly, when are things more magnificent than when they are stripped down to their bare bones?

The bread with the butter. The salt on the tomatoes. The ice in the glass of water.

We are learning that sometimes it is most beneficial to keep things as simple as possible – elemental even. Our summer mantra did not find us until late August, but when it did it was crystal clear: less is more.

We’re excited to be back! HERE’S TO THE LAST FEW WEEKS OF SUMMER!

xo

C+C

Summertime Manifesto

Uncategorized

We believe in summer. We believe in switching off and tuning out. We believe in ‘No Screen Time’ and lots of travel. We believe in family time. And quiet time. And alone time. We believe that the best work is done when we are rested, relaxed, excited and inspired. We believe in giving it our all and never phoning it in. We believe in siestas and sunset strolls. We believe in hard work. And hard play. We believe in taking a break.

It’s time for our annual summer hiatus — we’ll be taking some time off from the blog and the newsletter until Labor Day Weekend. In case you’re looking for some reads (or haven’t had a chance to visit the blog lately) check below for some of our faves!

The Wild Unknown by Chelsey
Here’s something I’ve been thinking about lately: what if the Universe isn’t planning, orchestrating, and managing our lives so we can become some beautiful, happy, fulfilled thing? What if the Universe isn’t thinking about us at all? What if it’s not about the Universe helping you close your deal, or process your grief, or take away all of your financial problems?…continued

Land Ho! by Andrea Martinez
There’s a Dear Sugar column that talks about ghost ships and how we all have our giant ship of the What If that never was. I can’t remember the initial question, or what led Sugar to bring up the ghost ship. I can’t even remember the exact words, only how I felt when I first read her column. I was working two part time jobs, six days a week and going extremely hard in my off hours…continued

You Can Have It All, But Not All At Once by Christina
During Oprah’s interview with Michelle Obama, Michelle was talking about being a Mother and having large ambitions. She said: “WOMEN NEED TO KNOW THAT YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL…JUST NOT ALL AT ONCE.” I am sure that it has been said before. It might have even been said directly to me…continued

Have a Beautiful BEAUTIFUL August!

Lots of LOVE,

C+C

A Beautiful Weekend

Uncategorized

Michelle Obama.

Don’t mess with the Aussies.

This female artist.

WTFHHD?

Cannot wait to see this movie. Women + Wall Street. Yes, please. (Plus, it was written and directed by women).

Run, Kendra, run.

Why should I go see it? (And for the record, I saw it and I LOVED it).

High fives for failures. 

Karlie, Karlie, Karlie. 

What he wore.

Body hair is everywhere.

73 questions.

A beautiful home.

A beautiful brand.

A beautiful woman

Have a beautiful weekend! 

 

A BEAUTIFUL WEEKEND!

Uncategorized

We are all kinds of ready for a relaxing weekend with friends, family and lazy mornings. Here’s to a beautiful one! 

There’s a butterfly species in Kenya that’s evolving without males. 

Linda Rodin knows all. 

How much time?

Flotus, you are too cool. 

No more ‘Becky with the good hair‘. 

100 kick ass women.

#loveforlesliej

You just got ‘Ginsburned‘.

Dear Chrissy Teigen, you win at everything. Than you for this, this, and this

10 

Weekend goals

Some coolness from our friend, Amy Woodside

Anyone planning a vacation?

A beautiful book.

A beautiful shop.

A beautiful woman.

Have a beautiful weekend.