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Simplicity Series: Robin Long

June 27, 2016



Hi, I’m Robin! I currently live in Colorado but in just a few weeks I’ll be moving back to the beach in Santa Barbara, CA with my husband and 2 little kids. I’m a Pilates instructor and creator of The Balanced Life – a website dedicated to helping busy women get fit from home. I’m passionate about helping women learn to love and appreciate their bodies. Our motto over at The Balanced Life is “grace over guilt.”  So many of us use guilt as a way to motivate ourselves to workout and it really doesn’t work, so I’ve made it my mission to change the conversation and empower women to exercise and eat well for the RIGHT reasons (not to look like someone on the cover of a magazine). 


How do you take care of yourself so that you’re physically and mentally prepared to be your best self for others?

The primary thing I do is pursue my passions. I love my work and I love learning. Running my own business with a 3 year old and 9 month old isn’t easy, but it gives me life and grows me as a person. 

I also make time for exercise a at least 3 days per week (usually Pilates), meditate for 5 minutes per day, eat balanced meals and get quarterly massages. 


What’s your favorite beauty secret?

Food! Eating a nutritious diet and drinking plenty of water is the only beauty secret I have. ☺ I get facials about once every 3 years (haha) and when I do, the estiticains always compliment me on my skincare routine – they are usually shocked to hear that I don’t get regular facials or use many products. I credit my (mostly) clear complexion a healthy diet (low in gluten and dairy) lots of water and good genes. 


What’s your favorite go-to outfit for a quick polished look?

I’m a maxi-dress girl through and through. They’re easy, comfortable and fit almost any occasion.


What’s your favorite quick-prep dinner for your family?

Slow Cooker Chicken Chili Verde is a staple in our house. 

Combine 2 chicken breasts, 1 jar of tomatillo salsa, 3 cans of cannellini beans, 3 cups of chicken broth, 1 tablespoon of cumin and 1 teaspoon of oregano in a slow cooker and cook on low for 7 hours. Before serving, remove chicken, shred and return to slow cooker. Easy, healthy and delicious!


Tell us your favorite Instagram account to follow and why?

I love @coffeeandcrumbs. It’s a collective blog about motherhood and the posts are heartfelt, genuine and  encouraging.


What tradition or routine is important to you?

I have a few!

One – I get coffee from a coffee shop almost every day. To some this may sound frivolous, but to me, it is a way to treat myself on a daily basis. I am the primary caregiver to our small kids and I also run a business that supports our family. It’s not easy. Getting coffee feels like a treat and has become a routine that I love and embrace.

Two – Daily gratitude. Every day I thank God for anything and everything I can think of. Focusing on all that I have been given and all of the good things in my life changes my perspective and brings me so much joy. Practicing gratitude on a daily basis has truly changed my life.


What’s in your purse?

My wallet, my phone, Larabars, diapers, wipes, extra baby clothes, random baby toys, Honest Hand Sanitizer…and a few rocks (my daughter snuck those in there at the park last week).


Where do you find your inspiration?

I LOVE podcasts. I listen to one almost every day. I love listening to business and entrepreneurship podcasts that challenge me to think in new ways. 

My best ideas for new programs usually come to me while I’m out on a headphone-free run.


We know you’re a busy lady! How do you balance owning your own company (and all of the responsibilities that come along with that!), in addition to your home and personal life? Any tips for our readers? 

Sticking to a very consistent sleeping routine has been the most important thing I’ve done to make things work.  I’ve worked every nap time since my daughter was born 3 years ago and now, with 2 little ones at home, it’s even more important that their sleep schedule is predictable.  We keep a pretty solid routine around our house to ensure that our kids take good naps and I can get my work done. There is no way I would be able to run a business and be home if I couldn’t count on a solid afternoon naptime. ☺

One of the other things that really helps is preparing for the week on Sundays. I do all of the grocery shopping and food prep over the weekend so that I don’t have to worry about it during the week. I also sit down with my husband and go over the calendar for the upcoming week so we can plan accordingly. 

Lastly, hiring a house cleaner was one of the best decisions I ever made. ☺


What’s your favorite app (or other tool) for helping you do life? 

Asana is the #1 tool I use within my business. After that I’d say it’s my google calendar. I color code it to reflect work commitments, program schedules, our editorial calendar, scheduled childcare and other important dates I want to remember. I don’t know where I’d be without calendar reminders!


Follow along with Robin:

Website: http://www.thebalancedlifeonline.com

Instagram: @thebalancedlife


Weekly Top Ten: June 20 - 24, 2016

June 24, 2016



Happy Friday! We're loving these ten things this week and think that you will too! :) 

1) Pineapple String Lights: Our friends over at Waiting on Martha sent us these a few weeks back, and we just adore them! They're perfect for party decor, kids playrooms, or for some extra outdoor lighting at a backyard event! 

2) TaylorMade Life: Our friend Taylor (who is one of the sweetest, most incredible women ever!) launched her brand new blog this week and is sharing about her battle with severe endometriosis. After facing many scary health issues, she and her husband are pursuing infertility treatments and launched an amazing fundraiser to help cover the costs. You can read more about their journey on her blog, or purchase a necklace to help support them on The Lemondime's Facebook page

3) Our New Personalized Shop: Did you hear the big news? Personalized products, including our well-loved Great Day Plates, are now available on our website! Hooray! 

4) Primrose Earrings: These colorful earrings from Accessory Concierge are on sale for only $12! They're the perfect size and will match with just about any outfit this summer. 

5) Shay's July 4th Recipes: Shay, over at Mix and Match Mama, posted a bunch of her favorite festive recipes for Independence Day. We're drooling over her Red, White, and Blueberry Coconut Parfaits

6) Beach Sheets from Beach Road Designs: We absolutely love these beach sheets, and the company that makes them! They're large, lightweight, sand resistant, and machine washable. LOVE these! 

7) @letteredlife on Instagram: Are you following along with Caitlin Bristow on Instagram? We love her colorful feed and gorgeous lettering! 

8) Short Sleeve Chambray Dress: How cute is this little chambray dress!? It's nearly 50% off this week and comes with a free monogram on the sleeve. If you're looking to splurge on a classic summer dress, you can't go wrong with this one! 

9) Stone Fringe Pendant Necklace: This necklace is under $12 with free shipping (and free returns!). You can't beat this deal! 

10) Our June Playlist: Don't miss out on our June playlist! Hop on over to Spotify to hear what we've been playing in the office all month long. 


The Emily Ley Personalized Shop!

June 22, 2016



HOORAY! Many of you who have followed our journey from a guest room born hobby to the brand we are today may remember that between 2008-2011 we offered personalized  iPhone cases, stationery and Great Day Plates®. Well, we are thrilled to have partnered with The Boatman Group to bring some of those great products you loved BACK!


This means that the Great Day Plates® you all know and love will now be available year 'round in our new personalized shop, along with tumblers, iPhone cases, and memo cubes! This collection features our signature patterns, along with some new designs and lots of MONOGRAMS! YAY! You can browse the entire collection here. We've been working so hard on each and every one of these pieces and just love how they turned out. We can't wait for these new products to make their way into your hands! 

copyright 2017 emily ley