Happiness is a clean, well-kept home. There’s no bigger believer in that than Chicago-based interior designer Kara Mann. Her mom always said there was place for everything and everything should be kept in its place. And, life was nicer when you buy once and buy well. Throughout her career, Mann struggled to find beautiful, utilitarian home essentials for her high-end residential clients — things like sponges, tea towels, laundry hampers, brooms, and storage boxes. So, inspired by Mom, she created Kept, a collection of products that bridge the gap between elevated interior design and home keeping. Items range from eco-friendly dryer balls made from New Zealand wool (six for $32) to a recycled steel and natural linen hamper ($200) to durable wood composite and faux suede closet storage boxes ($88-$125). Available at kepthome.com.
We’re talking good vibes — literally. The ancient healing art of sound baths are honored at Chill Mediation and Massage, where a gong is purposefully drummed to create sound that regenerates your parasympathetic nervous system. The short story: It releases tension and is good for you. For an upgrade on the experience try the Crystal Alchemy Sound Bath, which features a centering meditation followed by a sound bath using crystal alchemy bowls to help your mind and body move energy and find a peaceful, meditative state of being. Gong baths offered Sun., 1:30 p.m.; Crystal baths offered Thurs., 7:30 p.m. Starting at $25/class. chillchicago.com
If you love healthy smoothies but not the shopping-for-ingredients part, Chicagoan John Redmond has the answer. He created Better Blends for anyone looking for a quick breakfast. The containers, which you store in your freezer, are individual servings that come loaded with freshly harvested fruits and veggies, most of them organic. The only thing you add: almond milk and ice. Redmond was inspired to create the at-home kits after being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis and needing nutrition that wasn’t hard on his sensitive stomach. Better Blends — which are vegan, gluten-free, and packed with ingredients known for anti-inflammatory properties — fit the bill. Flavors include blueberry and matcha, mint and cacao, strawberry and banana, and more. $7.99 at Goddess & Grocer stores. betterblends.com