Today is my ‘catch up at home’ day. I just finished three loads of laundry and it is not even 10 am yet. As I folded the second load, I came across so many articles of clothing my children still love but no longer fit well. “I have to get rid of these soon”, I think to myself. The truth is that I have tried to get rid of some of these items many times, but the resistance I face from them is strong. I gently fold a pair of basketball shorts Lucas loves that is two sizes too small and way too tight around his tiny waist. I make small piles of their clothes, separating (once again) the ones I plan to donate. Only time will tell if these will make it back into their drawers.
Reality hits me as I stack the clothes into the laundry basket to bring them upstairs. I, too, have been struggling with letting go lately. I am in the midst of a(nother) rebranding project for my business, and have dealt with anxiety, guilt and shame of letting go of a brand I built out of so much love and intention. I know my brand ‘no longer fits’, but I can’t seem to let go either. I remind myself that my identity is not tied to my business, and that with growth comes pain and fear.
I have been praying hard for clarity during this time. I asked God to help me stay true to my heart and soul and to show me the way that will allow me to execute the plan he has for me. This week has been filled with so many heartfelt conversations with women I admire and who encourage me along the way. In one discussion, I realized my love for Hospitality is a God-given talent I’ve been blessed with and so much of what I love to do is a direct representation of this. I asked for prayers to give me the wisdom to lead with love and let go of what no longer serves me. God answered my prayers and has filled my heart with the confidence and wisdom I need to move forward with a new brand. In reviewing my emails, I came across a quote that beautifully captures what I’m going through.
“The sooner you make a choice, the sooner you can make an adjustment“
I hope this inspires you to embrace a decision you are struggling with, too, and find comfort knowing you are not alone.
Every year I resolve to be a better person – a better mom, a better wife, a better friend – but by the time Fall comes around I already feel like I’ve failed. It is so hard to do all the things while maintaining a sense of balance (and sanity) when my life is already filled with so much of the mundane, everyday tasks. It is difficult to make time for what really matters when time slips away each day all too easily.r
In 2018, I did so much to get back to my true purpose and peel back the layers to my core – to redefine what really matters and put everything back into perspective. I cried a lot, I doubted myself too often, I suffered from panic attacks, anxiety attacks and countless sleepless nights. I felt overstretched and overwhelmed all the time and tried to ignore the signs that told me to slow down, do less, and listen to my heart. I read to feed my soul and also to quiet my mind.
I did not spend as much time as I would have liked with the people I love and want to support. I did not spend as much time in quiet spaces or with my own thoughts, to soak in my blessings or express my gratitude as often as I liked. As the year drew to a close, I felt a gap in my heart grow as I felt I was tumbling into an abyss I feared I would not be able to escape, unless I changed my life significantly – little by little, and with lots of intention.
I worked with a coach who made me realize I cannot control everything that happens to me, and that losing sight of my family would only mean I could lose everything PERIOD. I pulled back from my business for a while, and truly enjoyed a summer free from commitments, and staycations to celebrate time with my sweet family GUILT FREE and JOY FILLED. I enjoyed more unplanned, simple moments at HOME – baking with my sweet children, moving our furniture around until I felt content, repainting our kitchen a soothing shade of taupe, clearing my closet out to celebrate the 20 pounds I lost this year, attending school events and birthday parties with my children and winding down at night enjoying guilty pleasure TV shows with my husband instead of staying up late at night to work work work without fulfillment.
This year, I vow to lean into more of what makes my heart feel full and take my time to grow my business without sacrificing what matters. My goals are simple and an extension of relying on habits and routines I’ve formed over time. I’m hoping that sharing them here will inspire YOU to take stock of what matters and work on your BIG PICTURE GOALS little by little, with a lot of patience and GRACE to live a life you truly enjoy and is filled with JOY.
My 2019 Goals
Self Care – Take time for me, especially when I start to lose sight of my health. Monthly massages, biweekly nail appointments, back to yoga and pure barre. Enjoy activities I love – calligraphy, florals, decorating – guilt-free and without comparison.
Calm – Feel calm and cozy at home. Create a joyful, happy, clutter-free space. Meditate and read regularly to maintain a sense of calmness amidst the chaos.
Relationships – Nurture time with my husband, children, and my closest friends. Monthly date nights, family outings and brunch dates to deepen these connections and make new memories.
Community – Meet new friends in the industry, host quarterly events to bring people together. Join community groups to meet new friends.
Boss Babe – Create high-quality content for my brand, through collaborations and featured publications for my ideal client. Streamline my process to automate recurring tasks and onboard new members to my team.
Debt Free – Create a realistic plan to pay off our debt by 2020. Focus on minimizing credit card debt and managing our monthly to redirect funds to savings. Enjoy one or two staycations during the year, and a family trip to Europe in the Fall!
Would love to hear about your goals, and cheer you on in 2019. Come back to see how things are going for me in 2019, and stay in touch!
I love to read. I just don’t get enough time to read as much as I’d like. My goal in 2018 was to read one book a month. I think I did ok. Here’s the list of my favorite reads of the year, by category. I use Goodreads to track my reading and yes, I leave reviews from time to time to remind myself of why I loved a book and share my thoughts with others.
These are the books I read and loved this year. Oh, and if I am not loving a book by the second or third chapter, I simply set it aside and move on to a new one. No need to keep reading if I’ve lost interest early on or don’t feel connected to any of the characters.
Fave Thrillers and Suspense
Sometimes I Lie
Something in the Water
The Luckiest Girl Alive
Drama and Novels
We Could be Beautiful
The Rules of Magic
What Alice Forgot
The Last Mrs Parrish
In Another Life
Motivation and Self-Love
Present not Perfect
Grace not Perfection
A Simplified Life
Girl, Wash Your Face
Light-Hearted and Fun
I’ll See you in Paris
When Life Gives You Lululemons
If you want to see my full list, or read reviews and find similar books, follow me on Goodreads. I hope to find you there.
Everyone (including myself) has been posting their Best Nine on Instagram these days, and I find myself seeking inspiration from my favorite images as I look for fresh content for our vision boards this year. Is it just me, or is it increasingly harder to stay inspired in a world filled with so much noise and distractions?
I have refreshed my goals for this year and am so looking forward to serving YOU in ways that inspire you and feed your soul. Through a year of much reflection, I have discovered my purpose is so much greater than just creating pretty content for weddings and my potential goes beyond so much more than designing and coordinating flawless events.
There is so much I yearn to share with YOU and I welcome you to join me along on this journey. I know I have been holding back on so many of my dreams and passions, for the simple FEAR of failing and not living up to others’ version of success.
2018 was a tough year, as I refined our mission and peeled back the layers of our business plan to get closer to our true purpose. It was a year of experimenting and learning through new experiences. I met some great new friends along the way and I learned so much about myself. I read some books I felt were written just for me and walked a path that was mine alone.
At times, all I wanted to do was give up. I felt my business is not growing fast enough, I don’t have enough followers on social media, and have doubted myself for making such a bold change to my brand over the past two years. It has been difficult creating a brand that is like no other, and that is not built to serve the masses. It has been humbling to turn couples away because their values don’t align with our own, or because taking work on just for the sake of it would only drain my soul when what I need most is to stay true to my heart.
I am starting this year with a newfound appreciation for the work I do and a fresh perspective for the year ahead. I closed myself off to some opportunities in the past and have been too cautious with some of my dearest dreams, only to see them wash away and resurface when I least expected them. I have held on to an idea of what this sweet business of mine ‘should be’ rather than lean into all it ‘can be’ at the risk of losing myself in a sea of uncertainty when my heart has always known why I ever took the risk and started at all.
My family is my greatest treasure and my forever WHY. Beauty drives me to do what I do. Love inspires me to keep going even when the going gets rough. I am so often reminded that my purpose goes beyond making things pretty. I will continue doing what I love and feeling blessed for the opportunities I have to create beauty and joy for others when they need it the most. I will find ways to give back to my community and inspire others to BE THE LIGHT.
I hope you will join me on this journey as I venture off into unknown territory and lean into my greater purpose while growing a brand that was created to serve YOU.
Thank YOU for believing in me, following me, reading my story.
Today is February 25th, 2018 and the first day of the rest of my life and a date that carries so much significance for me. I am still settling into my goals for 2018, as I take a moment to reflect on all I’m grateful for, big and small.
This vision board hangs in my office as a reminder to live a life full of joy and never lose sight of what matters most. My word of the year is HOME and my overall goal this year is to create an environment at home that is filled with beauty that serves my family and strengthen the relationships with those I love most while growing a business that celebrates love and intimate gatherings.
My mission is, quite simply, is to create beauty while loving myself and those who matter most to me. This means making time for me so that I can be the best I can be for others. This means clearing the clutter – physical and mental – so that I can focus on what matters. This means making plans to improve my life, and following through to make it happen. This means supporting and inspiring others, and asking for support and motivation when I need it most.
I don’t know how to do anything ‘half-way’ or partially. With me, it’s all or nothing.
I have been struggling with losing weight for some time, as I have given into stress eating and skipping meals for too long. I have tried diets and counting calories, only to lose the weight temporarily and bounce back once it’s over.
I have gone through rounds of organizing and reshuffling things only to have them resurface in my home, even though they no longer serve me or bring me joy. I have lost my temper with my sweet family over an item that’s in the wrong place or items that are taking over our space at home.
I have made plans for dream vacations that I’ve been unable to honor because, too often, a quick stop at Target turns into a shopping spree for all the things I love but don’t actually need, and I am an expert at justifying that I do need it and have to have it.
I have planned to do a fun date night with my husband every month, only to fail continuously because we can’t find a babysitter or can’t figure out something fun or different worth getting out for.
I have missed birthdays and anniversaries because I’m ‘too busy’ when in busier times in my life I pre-purchased birthday cards and sent them to my friends and family to brighten their day and let them know they’re not forgotten.
I am my worst critic and my biggest cheerleader at the same time. I tell myself ‘You got this’ while my inner voice is saying ‘You are not enough’. I am not skinny enough, strong enough, organized enough, fun enough, patient enough. I am too busy, too much of a perfectionist, want too much. My vision is unrealistic, not achievable, just a dream.
Well, I’ve had enough. Today is the day. Today marks 8 years since we brought our micro-preemie twin girls home after spending their first two months of their lives in the NICU after I spent three weeks on bed rest during my favorite holiday season of the year – Christmas. Today marks 14 years since I bought my first home on my own, in Phoenix Arizona, after moving on a whim for a better quality of life and work life balance – where I met the man who became my husband and whom I love with all my heart.
Today marks one year from the date I ran the 10K Disney Princess Run with no history of ever even running a 5K, and while I fought bronchitis. I ran reluctantly that day, but in the end, I ran for my family that day. I visualized crossing the finish line with my sweet family at the finish line cheering me on, even though in reality they were home tracking my progress online. Visualization is a powerful tool.
I visualized my ideal home layout when shopping for my first home and the home I purchased was laid out exactly the way I envisioned it. I visualized bringing home two healthy babies, when I was in the hospital for three weeks, even though my first night there they almost rushed me into a C-section when my tiniest baby was at risk for not making it.
Today, I visualize a life filled with more joy and laughter than I’ve had in the past five years, as I’ve focused on doing so much while starting to lose sight of what I already have and have achieved.
Today, I start a fresh new program to kickstart my health and reset my eating habits. I start the Whole 30 program with my #1 cheerleader, my sweet husband. Yes, it will be hard. Yes, I will want to give up. Yes, I will want to end my nights with my usual glass of wine. Yes, I will miss the generous dose of milk and sugar in my morning coffee. But I refuse to give up. This will be hard. But I have done hard before. Parenting is hard. Marriage is hard. Owning a business is hard. Life and anything worth having is hard. If things were easy, the reward wouldn’t be as fulfilling.
I may even bring this blog back to life very soon, but for now, I hope you don’t mind this unstructured approach. I simply want to capture my thoughts and set them out in the universe so they can come back to me as wishes and dreams that come true.
Until then, enjoy the sweet life and all that’s good in your life today.