It’s been waiting for you.

The thing is, I felt like it was when we arrived.

New York City–the land of over 8 million people–felt like it was waiting for us.

One day, maybe I’ll tell you the details of our journey to New York; but let’s just say it started four years ago at Amsterdam Ale House in the Upper West Side, when Jonathan and I looked at each other and said, “What if we lived here?”

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We’ve only been here a month, but we’ve been surprised and grateful at just how at home we are in the city that never sleeps.

I took some time away from writing and this blog, but it is my hope to write again–this time about the things that inspire me in our new city.

Welcome to our little life in the big city.

my latest buzz

In case you missed it, Laurel’s beautiful baby bee shower was featured on Inspiration Mississippi!

This is my favorite pic from the day. Laurel was truly glowing!

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This shower was definitely a Fall highlight. We were thrilled to get to celebrate with Laurel as she prepared for the arrival of her sweet babe (we love you, baby Wilson)!

In honor of her love for bees, we decided a bee-themed shower would be perfectly appropriate.

We even incorporated her hand-drawn (lovely bee) bee into the invitation:

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I was excited to be interviewed about the details and the process, and I enjoyed working with all of the lovely hostesses! Our friend, Jessica Holmes, made the adorable baby bee banner in the above photo. It was one of my favorite touches!

Head on over to Inspiration Mississippi for the interview and more pics from the day!

Let’s escape the bitter cold and explore Provence today…

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The southeastern region of France extends from the left bank of the lower Rhone River on the west to the Italian border on the east, and is bordered by the Mediterranean Sea on the south.

I think I could spend a lot of time in the South of France…

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It is laid-back, history-rich, and the food is truly superb.

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“In France, cooking is a serious art form and a national sport.”
{Julia Child}

If you’re a foodie, France is paradise.

I got distracted by the food. That happens a lot in France.
But that’s okay. The French want you to get lost in the food.

That means you’re doing something right!

~

Christmas in the region is beautiful and bustling in certain areas…

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Although you will not see every square inch draped in Christmas like you do in the States,
you will see lots of lights, Christmas markets, and a tree here and there.

{AVIGNON}

We decided to make Avignon our first home base for the region.

We stayed a couple of nights in downtown Avignon at a boutique hotel–

Hotel Boquier

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It was a quaint, no frills, perfectly French hotel,
and we could walk to everything in the city from its location.

Avignon is a bigger city for the region, but it still has that Provencal charm…

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The restaurants were some of the best we had in France,
and we enjoyed ordering in French, too!

In the South, you’re much more likely to encounter places that speak little to no English…

but we loved it.

People were patient with us, and they loved helping us discover the language.

After a long dinner, we would take night walks
and they became one of the best parts of a long travel day.

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Avignon has some beautiful landmarks,
but my favorite was Palais des Papes (Palace of the Popes).

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The Pope’s Palace is the largest Gothic palace in all of Europe
and was built in the 14th Century as the brief home to the Pope before it moved back to Italy.

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The attention to detail and grandeur blew my mind…

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And the light just seemed to place itself perfectly.

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All together, 9 Popes lived in Avignon and it seemed that each one
had to add on to the Palace because it wasn’t quite grand enough.

It’s a must-see in this city!

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From Avignon, you can travel easily to

{Arles}

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Sadly, we did not travel to Arles in this beautiful Beetle.

But I saw it and thought that it was perfectly posed next to the river,
so I had to snap a shot.

Arles was quiet and lovely.

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I can see why Van Gogh loved it here so much.

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We enjoyed the walking easel tour of landmarks where the artist painted…

this was the exact spot where “Starry Night Over the Rhone” was created.

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And recognize this place?

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You probably don’t, but it was the building behind the “yellow house,”
and it was pretty cool to see it in person!

Oh!
And in Arles, you can find Roman ruins…

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I was in complete awe.

The Arles Amphitheatre…

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And the breathtaking view from the top:

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I felt like I was in a painting here.

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Put on your boggan, cause it gets windy up at the top.

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The Arles Roman Theater is a hop and a skip (almost literally) from the Amphitheatre…

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The theater was built during the reign of Augustus (31 BC-41 AD).
I couldn’t believe we were visiting a place that was built before Jesus was born.

Yes, it was a beautiful day in Arles,
and we enjoyed the ease of this city.

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After a couple of days in Avignon and Arles, we hopped a train
and traveled a few minutes further East.

I    L  O  V   E  the TGV, by the way.

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Enter
{Aix en Provence}

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Aix en Provence was one of my favorite stops.

It’s less touristy and known for its ease and quaint, high-end shops.

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I fell in love with this ballet store and had to go in for a drink of beautiful shoes and ballet wear.

In Aix, be like the French.
Slow down and stroll.

And enjoy Eclairs eu choclat from your favorite Artisan Boulanger…

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Because when you stroll in France, you find little gems everywhere…

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I was particularly fond of the Tapestry Museum.

We couldn’t take pictures inside, but if you find yourself in Aix,
stop in and admire the time it must have taken to put one square of a tapestry together.
These people were true artisans!

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Enjoy a boutique hotel in the middle of the city.

We stayed at the Hotel Cardinal.
It was a lovely (and old) French boutique.

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And whatever you do, definitely say yes to a baguette
and a bottle of wine from the region.

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You won’t be sorry.

Hope you enjoyed this tour through Provence!

One day I hope to spend a few weeks in the summer in this region…
it’s the perfect place to practice your French, slow down, and savor life,
as well as the Provencal flavors, of course!

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Au revoir for now!

We’ll head to the Riviera next, where it’s warm and colorful even in the winter. ;)

xoxo

I’m thrilled to introduce an exciting creative blogger collaboration with a dear friend and talented woman. Meet Laurel Donahoo.

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She’s truly as lovely as she is beautiful! 

Laurel and I have been good friends since college, and one way we’ve kept in touch is through our blogs. After some good food and creative talk one night, we hatched an idea: a collaboration of My Latest Buzz + The Lovely Bee.

Enter, The Lovely Buzz.

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We share a similar free spirit, an obsession for bees, and a love of French 75s.

So we thought me might share some blog posts, too.

We’ve decided to swap some writing and bring you a little bit of creative goodness along the way, so stay tuned!

Now, let’s get to know a little more about the writer behind The Hive and the creator of The Lovely Bee

You’re going to like her. She’s fun and fabulous, too.

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Tell us a little bit about yourself.

My name is Laurel and I’m from Madison, Mississippi (just outside of Jackson!) I am married to my best friend in the whole world, Price! We have twin beagles (Delta and Dover) and a big lovable mutt named Ringo (who weighs about 30 pounds more than what the vet told us he’d probably weigh… But I guess that’s the risk you take when you welcome a mutt puppy into your home!) I am ½ of the heaviest twins ever born in the state of Mississippi (an honor I share with my brother/womb buddy, Jordan.) I love traveling, Mississippi State football (and hanging out with Sara Beth and Jonathan after every home game!), pretty clothes, pretty furniture, the 20’s, Breaking Bad, The Wonder Years, malbec, crisp Octobers, local food, quoting movies (Home Alone has to be my fave), and my Lord and savior, just to name a few things! :)

 

Tell us about The Hive.

The Hive is my little blog that I originally started for the purpose of keeping anyone who was interested updated on my stationery business, The Lovely Bee! After realizing pretty quickly that its no fun for anyone for me to talk about my business all the time, I decided to expand my blog topics to things beyond pretty paper products and explore other loves (like cooking, fashion, wine, traveling, so forth and so on!) The Hive has turned into one of my most fun ventures and a great way for me to meet lots of new people! (And I do still give occasional business updates, for those who do find that interesting!)

 

What do are your favorite things to blog about?

I really really love throwing parties then blogging about them! My favorite one I did was Price’s surprise 30th birthday party! It was cigar themed and I may or may not have gotten carried away with the theme… But I had SO much fun! (I’m still so proud of myself and all of our friends for keeping it a secret for so long! He was truly surprised!)

I also love blogging about anything Christmas related, about new ideas I have for stationery, about new recipes I’ve tried (or made up), and about my darling friend Elish’s enviable fashion sense!

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When is your favorite time (and setting) to blog?

My favorite time is either early in the morning before things get too hectic, or later at night when Price is watching a show I’m not interested in. I love sitting on the sofa with him, each of us doing our own thing together! I also love sitting at our dining room table, which is right by a big window that I can stare out when writer’s block takes me over!

 

How did you come up with the idea for your blog?

Well, even though it was started as a place for business updates, I realized how much I loved putting posts together! It’s one of my favorite things! So I wanted to start posting about other things I found interesting and that I thought others might get a kick out of as well. My blog has really turned into a place for me to just have fun!

 

Tell us about your stationery.

The Lovely Bee stationery is special because it is all hand painted and/or hand constructed! I have about a dozen different designs that I hand paint or draw a pattern onto, then I affix the design onto a beautiful card and package the cards as individuals and as sets of six! For the most part, The Lovely Bee stationery is really fun, bright, and happy. The designs range from quirky to cute to slightly more sophisticated.

I’ve actually done a few informal polls and I have yet to come across an individual who doesn’t love getting a pretty piece of snail mail in their mailbox! The Lovely Bee is here to assist you in brightening up your friends’ mailboxes with something a little different from what you might find in most stores!

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Describe your favorite outfit.

My favorite outfit… Let me tell you about what is currently my favorite outfit! I got this black drop waist dress from Zara on a family vacation to Chicago a few months back that I have absolutely worn the heck out of. I love the material, I love how it fits me and I love how easy it is to change up! My favorite way I’ve worn this little number lately was with a pair of Rosa Hyde casual taupey strappy heels from the one and only Arco Avenue, my taupey Rebecca Minkoff bag, and lots of gold jewelry layered on. I feel pretty but not overdone when I’ve got this little ensemble on!

Describe your perfect day (with perfect meal included):

My perfect day would include sleeping in with Price and the pups, having a big cup of coffee upon awakening, and enjoying it on our back porch with a 65 degree atmosphere surrounding us! After a leisurely coffee sesh, I would throw on my favorite outfit and go meet all my best friends for lunch, which would be a Mexican feast consisting of margaritas from Sombra, guacamole and cheese dip from Babalu, chips and a burrito from Jaco’s Tacos, and a spicy brownie for dessert from Sombra. (I’m a freak for Mexican food, and between my three favorite local mexican joints, I’m able to put together the perfect Mexican meal!) Post lunch, I would write a blog post about the amazing meal I just had, complete with perfect photos and no typos! I would then watch Home Alone with whoever wanted to join me, and we would laugh until we cried. We would then proceed quoting Kevin and Buzz and continue with the laughter. After a lovely, low-key afternoon, we would do another wardrobe change into something a little more sparkly and possibly 20’s inspired and get geared up for a fabulous dinner! This meal would consist of filets, artichokes, and ice cream for everyone, complimented by craft cocktails. After such a fun day filled with great food, I’m positive I would sleep like a dream!

 

What inspires you most?

I’ve probably been most inspired by others’ blogs, many of which I’ve been able to find via Pinterest! I also love me some online magazines. Rue and Lonny are by far my faves. I’m also super inspired by SummerHouse, the furniture store and design firm where I work part time doing social media. The creative environment up there is incredibly inspiring!

 

What are your top 3 travel destinations (places you’ve never been)?

The French Riviera. Morocco. Banf. (In no particular order) :)

 

How would you describe your style?

My style… Overall, I hope my style is what most people would call approachable! I like trends but don’t like investing too much in them. (This goes for fashion and for interiors, by the way!) Classic pieces that can adapt to trends are where I really like to invest. And for the most part, I’m a pretty casual person. I do love getting dressed up (and I love some glitter and sequins!), but my everyday look is more of what I hope is stylish casual!

 

Five words to describe your home.

Dog-friendly. Happy. White-walled. Art-filled. Cozy.

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How do you unwind?

I love going out to eat with Price after a long day. Letting someone else do the cooking is simply wonderful sometimes! Then coming home, belly full, and watching an episode of The Wonder Years on the back porch over a glass of grapes is the perfect mindless unwinding that’s needed after a big day at the office!

 

Give us an interesting/weird fact about yourself.

I’m dying to own an airstream trailer. How much fun would decorating and glamping in one of those be?!

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What can we expect from The Hive in the next few months?

I hope to really get my new column “Twelve Dollar Bottle” going strong, since the ones I’ve done to date have been so popular! The premise of this column is super simple: Buy a bottle of wine that costs $12 or less, gather a group of fun folks (who essentially know very little about wine), divide up the bottle, then discuss what we’re drinking! It can get pretty funny… :)

I also hope to get another column called “My Favorite Room” going strong, which would be my blogger friends snapping a few shots of their favorite room in their house and answering a few questions about what makes that room is so special to them!

 

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We look forward to reading more from you, Laurel! 

Stay tuned for more Lovely Buzz collaboration coming soon!
Be sure to check out more from Laurel on The Hive in the meantime. 

{xoxo}

I’ve been in the air.

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In fact, I’m probably in the air as you read this.

We’ve strapped in for travel season at the Cobb house,
and it’s exhilarating and exhausting all at the same time.

Within the last two weeks,
I’ve been to Indianapolis to see this pagaent queen…

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St. Louis for a business meeting…

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And Boston for a visit to see my husband and the city…

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I’ve been playing with flowers…

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And making bouquets…

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Building web sites and printing paper pretties…

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It’s been a great Fall thus far.

But I’m looking forward to slowing down for the next couple of weeks…

and taking time for walks with this little guy…

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preparing some new dishes…

spending some time with my hubby (where neither of us are working)…

spending some time away from my phone…

and catching my breath a little.

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How has your Fall been?
I hope you’ve had time for walks, time with people you love, time to travel

…and time for you.

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{Coming soon on the blog!}

The Lovely Buzz :: A Creative Collaboration  >>  A New York City Guide

4 Days in Boston  >>  The Latest Baby Announcement Designs  >>  The Tale of a Nervous Jetsetter

[stay tuned]