A once golden oak colored glider in the living room of the Rebstock home tells the story of Jessica and her parents, James and Ramona. The glider, a simple purchase by James, was the start of a wonderful journey as he brought it home right before the couple adopted Jessica.
While completing their home studies through Catholic Charities, the nun conducting the courses approached James and Ramona with a life-changing question. “The nun asked, ‘Are you ready to have a baby?’” Jessica explains. “My dad said, ‘How soon?’ and the nun said, ‘The baby needs to be adopted tomorrow.’ They were basically given a 24-hour notice that they were going to be parents.”
And just like that, James and Ramona’s upcoming adoption became the talk of the bayou down in Golden Meadow. The next few years of Jessica’s life were spent being rocked in that golden oak colored glider, a staple in the family’s home. As she got older, Jessica found an interest in home décor and interior design that set her on a path towards her Hello Gorjess blog.
“A year and a half ago I was really starting to research blogging. I love blogs and I read them all the time. I was looking for a hobby to have on the side while I’m getting my master’s degree,” the Nicholls graduate explains.
The extra time while pursuing her master’s degree helped Jessica take that next step towards starting Hello Gorjess earlier this year. “I fell in love with writing in college. I never realized I loved creative writing as much as I did until then,” she recalls. “That started to snowball into the blog. I had the extra time and I was making it my year, so I would say just having the time gave me that extra push. I have such amazing friends that I made at Nicholls that have supported me and said I should start it also.”
Before starting the blog, Jessica needed to narrow down the topics she wanted to talk about. The first one was easy. “I love home décor. Before I even started the blog, I would post pictures of my apartment that I completely redid and people really jumped on that,” she says. “I’m so passionate about home décor and interior design that I knew that was an absolute must.”
Through her research, Jessica was able to round out her topics. “Lifestyle came into play because all the topics that I wanted fell into lifestyle. I post healthier alternative recipes, drink recipes, and I’m religious so I’m also posting things about God and inspirational Scriptures that I read,” she explains. “That’s how I narrowed down the three topics. Home, lifestyle and inspiration is what Hello Gorjess is all about.”
Since starting the blog on February 23, Hello Gorjess has taken off and provided Jessica with another journey to experience with her supportive parents. The first big project came in March when she received a phone call from someone wanting to redo their entire house.
While standing in line at the movie theater, Jessica answered the call and her mom encouraged her to take the next step. “I took a leap, and I told her yes,” Jessica recalls. “We’re still working on the home, and it has been a dream. I just wanted to start a blog, and this interior design business came on the side, and I’ve always been passionate about it.”
The free time might be there now as Jessica is completing her master’s degree, but she is preparing herself for the day when she’ll be in the classroom. However, she still believes that Hello Gorjess will carry on. “I think if I manage my time well and stay organized, I can do both,” she says. “I love teaching, but this is such a fun hobby.”
Jessica’s love for home décor and interior design is not limited to redoing other’s houses and offices, as she recently began working on her parents’ home as well. The changes ranging from subtle to dramatic have added an extra touch of beauty to the home that she has known her entire life, a grateful gesture to the people that have supported her all along.
“We’re obviously very close. They have always supported me and given me the drive that I need to do what I want in life,” Jessica says of her parents. “They’re my backbone.”
And as for the glider? The chair has a seen a little bit of work too as Jessica distressed and painted it recently. “It was nice to keep that sentimental piece that my mom rocked me in. It was a lot of hard work, but it was nice to keep it,” she says. “I hope one day I can take that rocker into my home and rock my kids in that as well and keep that tradition going. I’m huge on sentimental pieces because that’s what makes a house a home.”