Today is my birthday! To celebrate, I’m answering some of my most frequently asked questions and sharing a few more things about me!
Today’s my birthday! I have loved being in my mid 30’s – It’s amazing how much confidence and joy has come in my thirties as a mother, wife, friend, and business owner.
I opened up a question box on my Instagram the other day and today I’m answering your questions!
dress is old from Anthropologie, similar dress HERE
Questions and Answers
“How tall are you?”
- I’m 5’6″!
“How old are you?”
- I’m 35 today! Officially in my mid-thirties and loving it so much. I feel more confident and happy than ever.
“Kids names and ages — who is who??”
- I wrote a whole post about the story behind by boy’s names IN THIS POST! I don’t use their full names most of the time because I don’t want them plastered all over the internet, but I shared them here. Our oldest is 12, our middle is 9, and our youngest is 6. The younger two look super similar and get mistaken for twins often, or people will mix them up if they see just one or the other. But they’re 3 1/2 years apart!
“Are you religious?”
- Yes! We are Christians and we are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
“What do you love most about your job?”
- I really love the creative freedom that I have. I’m never forced to write or share about something in particular. If I want to talk about shoes, or hair, or home decor, or belts, or makeup, or birthday parties….I can! If I’m feeling particularly passionate about something, no one is stopping me from writing 10 posts about it (ahem, The Chelsea Boots). I also love that this job pushes me to be creative in new ways, like adding lots of video content in the last year, or adjusting Get Dressed With Merrick content to be more interesting and interactive. No two days are the same, and it’s fun to always be pushing myself to grow and try new things and be creative in new ways.
“How long have you been blogging?”
- I published my very first post on January 2, 2008 while I was in collage getting my art degree (hence the name, Merrick’s Art). It was a place to share the art I was working on, mostly so my mom could see. I started adding fashion and DIY content in 2010 after my first baby was born, and then started taking the styling and fashion content much more seriously in 2012 after we moved to California and I’d just had my second baby. We also launched a women’s clothing line in 2019! It’s been amazing to see it grow and shift over the years.
“Can you share more about your sewing/design background?”
- I took sewing lessons for a few years when I was growing up. My mom and both my grandmothers were great seamstresses, so it ran in my family and was an important skill to my mom. After I graduated college and art school, I met Leanne Barlow, and at the time she was making most of her clothing. We instantly clicked and she ended up teaching me a ton about making your own clothing patterns and leveling up my sewing skills. I spent the next 5 or 6 years designing and making tons of my own clothing (and sharing them on the blog), and found that my artistic talent lended itself better to sewing and designing than to painting and drawing. I rarely sew anymore because my content has shifted to styling more than sewing, but I do a lot of designing for my clothing collection now.
“Do you have a degree? What was your major?”
- I mentioned above that I was working on my art degree when I started my blog. I got my Bachelors degree in Visual Arts from Brigham Young University, and then I spent the next three years after graduating studying under local artists at a small art academy.
“Did you envision your present career when you were growing up?”
- Absolutely not! For one, the internet barely existed back then, so this kind of career wasn’t even an idea back then. But also I wasn’t interested in fashion at all back then. My style was non existent in high school…it was super basic, borderline grungy. Dirty converse sneakers, basic tee, and flared jeans were my everyday, which maybe sounds cute, but it wasn’t particularly purposeful. Also when I started my blog, I literally had no clue it would turn into anything. I just planned to share family things and artwork on there, but I’ve also been willing to roll with the punches and adapt, so here we are!
“How old were you when you had your first baby?”
- I was 22!
“Favorite part about being a boy mom?”
- Obviously I don’t know any difference since I don’t have girls, but all three of my boys are mama’s boys. They are so kind and sweet to me, give me so much love and affection, and love spending time with me. I also am super passionate about them growing up to be respectful and kind and good men, and I feel really really blessed to be given that special (although daunting) responsibility.
“What helped you heal after your miscarriages?”
- We lost two babies, one in between our oldest two, and one between our youngest two. It was so hard, and terrifying to get pregnant again. Time, as always, was the biggest healer, but also focusing on other things and finding joy in them, helped a ton. I found a lot of joy in gathering friends during that time, and threw fun and extravagant parties with friends. We also lived at the beach during our second loss and I spent lots of time there. Being outside is so healing. It was also so important to talk about it with friends and my mom and my husband, rather than burying my feelings and sadness, or just trying to “move on.”
“How did you and your husband meet?”
- We met in college and I shared the whole story in THIS POST!
“Tell us about your time spent in California. Where did you live, for how long, kids born?”
- We moved to California at the end of 2012, one month after our second baby was born. My husband’s job promotion took us there. We first moved to Huntington Beach, where we lived for four years and will always feel like “home” to us. It’s one of my favorite places on earth. We made so many lifelong friends there, and we lived a mile from the water and it was magical. Our third baby was born here. We rented a beach house for 4 years and then saved up enough to buy a house a little farther inland, and we lived there for two years until my husband got another job promotion that brought us to Texas.
“How to get/stay motivated to exercise”
- Make it a daily habit, and start small. Before I got really consistent about exercising, I would tell myself that I’d exercise 3 times per week, but then I’d put it off and put it off everyday and never be able to fit all three days in. When I decided to do just 30 minutes everyday (except I take Sundays off), I was able to get in a good, consistent habit. I’ve worked up to more than 30 minutes per day, but starting there helped me get in a routine of daily exercise. I also put my workout clothes on first thing, and get my workout in as early in the morning as possible because the longer the day goes on, the less motivated I get and my workouts end up being super lame with way less effort. Now it’s just a habit and I don’t have to think about it — I just know I’m doing it everyday and I just do it!
“Where did you grow up?”
- I was born in Wisconsin, but my family moved to Las Vegas when I was four years old and I lived there until I graduated high school and went to college. I’ve never moved back, but I love Las Vegas and love going back to visit my parents, who still live there, every year.
“What is your favorite vacation spot (with the kids and as a couple)?”
- We’re not really the kind of family that does repeat trips. We want to see as many places in the world as possible, so we’ve done very few trips to the same location. But we did take the kids to Hawaii twice (different islands) and that was a dream. Philip and I love big cities, so I’m willing to go to any big city! We just did New York City last fall and Chicago in the spring. We’re doing London and Paris together next year and I cannot wait.
“What’s your favorite color?”
- I don’t really have one. My favorite color to wear is white though!
- I’m one of the least picky people that you’ll find. I’ll eat almost everything (although I hate olives). But if I have to choose, I’ll almost always choose Mexican food. I love tacos, and I really love good chips and salsa.
“What advice would you give your younger self?”
- This is a hard one! I think I’d tell myself to worry less about what others think and just unabashedly be myself. I feel like this comes with time anyway, but when I was young I tried so hard to fit in that sometimes I lost myself a little bit. I’m naturally a people pleaser, so the two combined was tough to navigate. But as I’ve gotten older, I care less about what anyone thinks and I’m much better at doing what I want to do, saying what I want to say, and living exactly how I want to live regardless of what other people think.
“If you could put together one YOU outfit, what would it be.”
- This is such a fun question! Definitely great fitting jeans, a better than basic top, cute sneakers, an easy layer like an olive jacket or wool coat or blazer, and some simple hoop earrings.
“How many photos are in your camera roll right this second?”
- Oh my gosh, you don’t even want to know. FORTY FIVE THOUSAND. I make a Mixbook album of our year every December and give it to my husband for Christmas/our wedding anniversary (which is two days after Christmas) and it’s the best time to go through your photos and delete unnecessary ones. If you need to do this too, use code MERRICK22 for 50% off Mixbook photo albums…they’re the best quality and make gorgeous coffee table books. It’s a perfect way to actually do something with those thousands of photos you might have in your camera roll too.
“Upcoming trips? How far in advance do you plan them?”
- We have quite a few trips in the next few months! We’re heading to San Antonio this weekend for a little weekend getaway for my birthday, and then we’re heading to Utah for my brother’s wedding in two weeks (yay!). In August I’m going to San Diego with my mom and sisters to celebrate my mom’s birthday, and then we’re going to Mexico for Thanksgiving! Philip is our resident trip planner, and he is constantly planning trips. It’s his favorite thing! He usually books them about six months in advance (closer to a year for international trips) and then starts planning the itinerary and booking restaurant and museum and other attraction reservations about a month in advance. I basically ask for the itinerary, plan my outfits, and show up. It’s a dream!
“How do you like living in Texas?”
- We love it! We live in a small town that’s pretty tight knit and quiet, but we live close enough to lots of restaurants and stores, so it’s not inconvenient. Southern hospitality is real here, and we’ve met so many wonderful people. Although it’s hot as blazes during the summer, I love having four seasons again…that was one thing I missed when we lived in California. The boys love their friends and schools here, and after three and a half years we’re feeling very settled and happy.
“Do you plan to live in Texas long term?”
- We don’t know! Although we love it here, Philip’s job could move us at some point. We’ve always made sunshine wherever we go, so we’ll enjoy our time here as long as possible and see what the future brings!
“Before Instagram and Blogging, what was your dream job?”
- I wanted to be an artist! I thought I would paint for a living and have my art in galleries and do commissions for people. I loved that time of my life when I did that, but I’m so happy to be where I am now.
I’ll be sharing more answers on Instagram today, if you want to follow along there!