Good Scents

Sunny

Did y’all know that the sense of smell is one of the most powerful memory triggers there is? It has something to do with where the scent receptors are in our brains—it’s tied in with memory.

OK, whatever with all the scientific mumbo-jumbo, but that explains why certain smells can actually make us emotional: happy, sad and even angry! If you think about it, most new smells are encountered when we’re kids. So, whatever was happening when you experienced a certain smell, that memory stays with you for life. And that explains also why not everyone likes the same smells; we all have different memories for different scents!

Amy and I are in the process of launching three new perfumes (starting Nov. 1!) for Gypsy Soule: Freedom®, Rebel® and Wild Child®. Freedom® is fruity and as bold as the American Buffalo roaming the open range. Rebel® is as courageous as a soaring bird. Wild Child® is a mixture of sweet and dangerous, expressed by the scent’s gentle floral nature and wicked sugar skull bottle.

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Because we’ve spent so much time talking about the new fragrance line, Amy and I have also talked a ton about certain scents and the memories they evoke for us. We thought it would be fun to share them with y’all!

lorinda

Smells I love, let’s see…I love the smell of a clean house! Who doesn’t love a tidy house?

The barn, wow. That smell represents so much to me: growing up on a ranch, my love of horses and their salty scent, saddles, hay and feed, all rolled into one, that’s of my favorite smells. I bet my heart rate drops 10 points when I encounter that smell. Sadly, I’ve never found a candle called “Barn.” LOL!

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Something about the smell of Irish Spring soap, mmmmmm. I also like the smell of gardenias, fresh ones are fantastic, but it’s a hard smell to get right in perfumes and candles.

Gardenia

Also, pear scented candles, that’s kind of a happy, peaceful thing for me. I really like fresh smells!

amy

Ummmm, let’s see…One of the first and strongest scent memories I think about is my Granny’s perfume. I swear, when I am stressed or sad, I get a whiff of it like she’s right there. It seems crazy, I know, but her memory and that scent are so powerful. She was my favorite and y’all might remember her because I wrote a blog on her once. She was kind, gentle and funny and most of all, she understood me better than anybody. An amazing lady!

Even though we haven’t had enough in Texas for the past few years, I’ll always love the smell of rain. It takes me back to being a little girl on the ranch where I grew up—watching smoke-grey clouds darken on the horizon, the wind swept a rush of the scent of the approaching rain: love! That’s a smell no candle can capture.

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The ocean is one of my happy places, that smell always sets my heart at ease.

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The smell of a steak sizzling on the grill, total comfort!

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Oh! Bread baking, yum! Though I think it always smells better than it tastes.

Something else that’s a big memory/scent trigger for me is the perfume I wore in high school “RED.” I would never wear it again, but reminds me of fun, innocent times.

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So, that’s that for our favorite smells. Go see if you can “smell” any memories of your own!

Let It Go

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The Disney movie “Frozen” was an iceberg-sized hit last year. I loved Olaf the snowman, but I also love the theme song “Let It Go!” I don’t listen to it in the shower or in my car or anything like that, but I like the lyrics because it speaks to a belief I’ve long held, and that’s about letting GO.

There are seasons for everything. Why do we feel compelled to hold onto some relationships or traditions out of obligation or guilt? I guess maybe it’s just how us girls are brought up. We’re expected to always be polite and sweet, but sometimes, man, ya just gotta admit when something is over.

“Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know”
Lyrics to “Let it Go”

Ahhh, I’m not good at holding things in—nobody should be. It’s not healthy. Because, sometimes, in relationships or life situations, we stay too long. You know that old saying: Always leave a party when you’re having a good time? Well, there’s some truth to that! I’m not advocating ditching solid old friendships or things you love to do, I’m just saying, it’s a good thing to clean out your psyche of stuff that’s broken or no longer serves a purpose—the trash in our minds.

That fractured friendship that you’ve had since you were 16? Going places with people you aren’t comfortable with, doing things you don’t really like, because you just don’t want to or can’t say no? That client who’s a pain in the butt, that job that’s stealing your soul. I’m talking about that thing that no longer fits—it’s like that pair of old boots that pinches and rubs blisters, but you’re still holding onto for no good reason: they’ve gotta go.

Sometimes the person we need to please is ourselves. And often, it’s less about pleasing ourselves than it is about maintaining a healthy mental outlook on life.

I’m in the same boat as everyone else. I often ask myself, “Is letting go OK?”

The answer is often, “Yes!”  There’s a time for all things, and nothing lasts forever…nothing. And once you’ve “taken out the trash,” and you forgive yourself for doing what needed to be done, you’ll experience such peace. Because even though I’m referring to the lyrics of a Disney song, the words are powerful and a great reminder that it is ok to LET IT GO!

“It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all…
I’m never going back,
The past is in the past!”
Lyrics to “Let it Go”

–Lorinda

Fall Y’all

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The first official day of fall this year is September 23. But, once the calendar says “September,” it feels like it’s already fall. And, we’ve had an early September Texas-style cold snap—the highs around here have been in the upper 80s. Ha! But that’s considered cool weather for just about anywhere in the south. I am such a summer girl: the fun trips, the light clothing, the never-ending sunshine. How can you not love flip flop weather?!

But, on to fall, which is a gentle way to usher out the summer season. The weather is so mild and gorgeous. I like the temperature drop, because there are still lots of warm afternoons and early evenings, so it’s like I’m getting weaned off of summer. My dogs are happier and are more energetic when the weather cools, and that, in turn, makes me happy!

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I love the changing out of the wardrobe. Fall trends are always plentiful and fresh, more so than any other season. I love the thick fall catalogs full of the rich yellows and reds that come with the season—you know I’m crazy about bright colors! I love that my plants and flowers make one more final surge and bloom. They’re green and happy up until…well, until they freeze their sweet little butts off in the winter.

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I like that I wear jeans more. I still love to wear flip-flops with my jeans, but you’ll also see me in boots more. I’m still a ranch girl at heart—love my boots!

boots

Fall, for Lorinda and I, means more travel, and that’s one of the toughest parts of our job. But, it also provides us with inspiration for designing new Gypsy Soule items. I do like that it means fireplace season is around the corner. Those bitter cold winter nights when it gets dark so early, when you rush home and look forward to building a big ol’ fire where you can snuggle under a fluffy blanket in leggings and a roomy t-shirt.

The leaves on the trees put on a show, and, as much as I love the green of summer, seeing blazing orange and fiery red leaves is somehow refreshing. It’s their last hurrah before they’re gone for months—they really do go down in a blaze of glory. I’m watching summer fade into fall—then comes the festivity of Halloween, the celebration of Thanksgiving and the anticipation of the Christmas season. Last of all, fall means it’s time for more hot drinks: hot coffee, hot tea and hot toddies.

Gratitude

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A person will always do more than what’s expected if they’re appreciated. In our busy world today, we sometimes overlook the importance of being nice just for the sake of being nice! And this doesn’t just go for employees or co-workers. Think about teachers or the cashier at your grocery store, your hairdresser, your parents or grandparents, your dog groomer, even your kids! The list is endless.

I think it’s super important to compliment people: magnify their strengths, not weaknesses! And, encourage, encourage, encourage! Lots of times it doesn’t take much at all to brighten someone’s day, just a teeny tiny bit of effort. I like words of affirmation. Whether it’s in an email, a handwritten note, or in person, just saying: “Hey, thanks for all of your hard work. It is noticed.” It feels good to say it, but I know it feels better to hear it. This can go for your boss, your employees, your friends, your husband or significant other…anyone that you notice is always working hard.

Acts of kindness, even tiny ones, are HUGE! Buy someone their favorite drink or snack—and the first step to that is finding out what someone’s favorite little things are! Does your neighbor like cupcakes? Pick one up from the store and deliver it as a surprise! Bring a teacher her favorite drink or snack at the end of a long school day. Buy your loved one his or her favorite treat, for no reason at all. Small rewards to show appreciation go such a long way!

I’ve read lots of stories about the “pay it forward” movement…I don’t know if it’s a movement…but, whatever. When a person does something like pick up a check for a family at a restaurant, or buys the person’s drink in line behind them. In turn, the people receiving those gifts will, hopefully, return the favor at some point. Such a cool concept!

I read a bittersweet little something the other day. A man had decided, after 30 years, to write a short note of thanks to one of his teachers. The man had grown up in a very rural and poor town in West Virginia. This teacher had opened the boy’s eyes to so many things, and he regretted never thanking her. So, he sat down and penned a letter. A few weeks later, he received a handwritten note in return from the teacher, who was now in her 80s living a lonely existence, but nevertheless grateful for the man’s show of gratitude. The teacher wrote in the note that, in her 50 years of teaching, his was the only note of appreciation she had ever received—she went on to express how much his letter warmed her heart. Wow. Something so simple, yet so profound—and we’re all capable of something like this!

These little things, like kind words and small gifts, they’re uplifting. They renew optimism and they warm hearts. Gratitude is such a noble attribute, and one that’s often lost in today’s world of texts and emails and impersonal communications. I think when I show thankfulness to others, it makes me realize all the blessings in my life. And that, in turn, makes me more grateful.

XOXO-Lorinda

Don’t Look Back

amy

I saw an awesome quote the other day: “Don’t look back, you’re not going that way.” Wow! How profound. I don’t know why, but human nature has cursed all of us a bit—we too often dwell on the past when there’s not a thing we can do to change it. It can be something small, or something earth-shattering, but regardless of the size of our regrets, y’all, there is no going back. And I know that’s a bitter pill to swallow sometimes. I think people who are heavy sleepers are crazy-lucky because it’s incredibly miserable to awaken at 3 a.m., only to be visited by your unwelcome past—all those mistakes and missteps love to bang around inside our heads in the middle of the night.

I’m a firm believer that everything seems worse when you’re tired, and chewing on old bad news when you’re lying awake in bed is akin to being forced to eat a cauliflower steak: it’s distasteful and downright wrong! (Have y’all seen those on Pinterest? A big ol’ slice of cauliflower grilled like a steak? Nasty! But, I’m digressing…) I once had a sweet little old lady (who lived to be 99 years old, by the way) tell me: “Once you’ve made a tough decision, it’s done. Never look back, regardless of the outcome.” I believe that little gem of wisdom, and I do my best to follow it. Because, here’s the deal: when we go back and second-guess our decisions and revisit our regrets, we somehow think things would’ve been perfect if we’d just chosen a different path. That’s just not so. Why, you ask? Because, there are no guarantees. In our pretty little heads, we’ll design a past created out of “I should’ve” and “I could’ve” and “if I had only,” and, well, maybe that past would’ve created a perfect future, but maybe not!

I could look back on my life, my career, and second-guess a few decisions (yeah, y’all know I’ve probably done that…who hasn’t?). But, all of my decisions, good and bad, have led me to where I am today. Should I have gone straight to a school that specialized in design? Maybe. But, I didn’t. I went to Texas Tech, and every step I made from the time I graduated from high school and departed that big, sweet, secure ranch I called home has been a journey.

They were my choices, my mistakes, my triumphs and, on occasion, my sorrows. But, stacked atop one another, they’ve made me who I am. In the light of day, I’m unapologetic about who I am. So, gals, let’s make a pact. Flee the past, keep your eyes on the horizon, and whatever you do, don’t look back, you’re not going that way!