Meet This Maker: Elizabeth Chappell

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Hello and welcome to another episode of  Meet This Maker!

Today I’m talking with quilter, Elizabeth Chappell! Elizabeth is also the founder and owner of an awesome quilty subscription box company, Quilters Candy Box. I’ve been a subscriber for a while now, and I LOVE getting my box of goodies in the mail.

We had such an INSPIRING conversation! Trust me, you do not have to be a quilter to get so much from this episode. Elizabeth is a creative, for sure, but she has a strong entrepreneurial side, as well.

It’s perfect for anyone who is thinking about starting or just starting their own business. I came away from the conversation feeling like I could do ANYTHING!

We talked about how we can stand out in the crowd of other companies in our same industry and about finding our people on social media. She had so many thoughtful things to say, you do not want to miss this interview! Plus, you’ll never be able to guess the unconventional way that Elizabeth started out in the quilting industry!

I’m so grateful to have spent time with someone who is a thriving entrepreneur in the creative world. She had so much goodness to share.

You seriously don’t want to miss it! Watch the video or if you prefer,  you can listen to the audio only. 

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (00:40) Elizabeth starts off with a bang telling us about her first ever business

  • (3:40) Being creative every day

  • (4:20) We’re all individual

  • (6:20) Ohhhh, the mom guilt!!!

  • (7:32) Leaving the guilt behind

  • (8:30) Saying no and yes to be creative

  • (11:28) Elizabeth wasn’t a quilter

  • (15:14) Going to work and leaving work

  • (17:28) I love anyone who’s scrappy like me

  • (20:55) Running a business takes work

  • (24:35) If you want it to work it CAN

  • (26:15) Adding her personal stamp to her work

  • (29:55) Instagram

  • (30:55) Pick of the week


During our conversation we mentioned:


Elizabeth’s pick of the week:


Make sure to follow Elizabeth on Instagram!

And you can find her website here and buy her quilt patterns here

As always, we didn’t stop with this interview! We continued the fun in a shorter interview of rapid fire questions. That interview is perfect for a quick dose of encouragement! Elizabeth shares the best advice she’s ever received and her best mistake!

Make sure you’re in the Facebook group so you can watch the bonus interview! Click here to watch!

Remember, you have an open invitation to reply to every email I send! I want to hear from YOU!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

5 Ways To Keep Your Identity Even Though You’re a Mom

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I was sitting in the orthodontist office waiting for my daughter, scrolling my social media feeds while totally listening to the receptionists’ conversation behind the desk. (C’mon...you know you do that, too!)

The younger of the two women said something about going out of town for the weekend. And the older woman responded, “Well you better do all that now because once you have kids you won’t have a life.”

The conversation continued and another mother in the waiting room area chimed in with, “Once you’re a mom, you’ll never sleep again.”

And you know what?!

This whole conversation really pissed me off! And I 1000% disagree!

Yes, being a mom is the absolute hardest job I’ve ever had.

Yes, I’ve been in seasons with less sleep than others.

Yes, there are things we HAVE to do that we don’t want to do.

But I don’t love that our society has developed the belief that we need to or are supposed to give our entire lives over to our children and spouses.

I don’t love that women are made to believe it’s selfish to do something for themselves.

I don’t love that women are made to feel like they’re not good moms if they don’t sacrifice EVERYTHING for their families.

The reality is, that’s not being a mom. That’s being a martyr!

I know because I’ve been there.

Here’s the thing... I believe you can be an amazing mom AND have a life of your own!

You are an individual in this world, and you deserve to still feel like one even though you’re someone’s mom and wife.

I realize not every woman buys into this story, and if that’s you...HIGH FIVE, SISTER!

However, there are a great number of women that DO believe this or have this expectation coming from their family.

No matter your circumstance or the stage of motherhood you’re in, there are things we can do to maintain our individuality.

1. Stay connected with friends

Whether they live around the corner or 1,000 miles away, do whatever you can to maintain the friendships you have in your life.

There are few things more soothing to my soul than talking to a girlfriend that knows ME. She gets me.

She makes me laugh...like the really hard belly laughs that seem to be too far in between sometimes.

She’s seen me at my worst and at my best.

She encourages me and loves on me when I need it. And I sure as heck hope I do the same for her!

Friends are important and sometimes it can feel HARD to make new friends. Here’s a list of my favorite conversation starters that help you skip past the small talk into a more meaningful conversation.

2. Get out of the house

I know. I know. Getting out of the house isn’t always easy, especially with little ones. But, getting out of the house doesn’t have to be a big deal to be helpful. Simply getting outside for a little sunshine on your face can do wonders for your mood and how you feel.

Do small things like taking a walk in your neighborhood with a neighbor. Go to the park or your favorite coffee shop.

Or do bigger things like getting out with your besties for a dinner & movie night, a girls day of shopping, or going to a concert.

I especially encourage a regular date night! Not only does it help you maintain your own identity, it helps you see your significant other as the person you fell in love with. And making new memories together only enhances your relationship.

3. Add things you love to your day...it can’t be all about your family all the time.

I’ve talked about this so much! Remembering the small things that bring you joy is one of the biggest ways to not lose yourself in all the responsibilities of life.

What’s your favorite color? What’s your favorite flower? What’s your favorite scent? Favorite candy? Favorite meal? Do you love music? Do you love to dance?

How much of any of these things are part of your day right now?

Most of the time we are going full speed ahead, trying to keep our head above water to get through the day. But how much better would your day be, how much better would your mood be if you took a one song dance break? If you cranked up the music while you put on your makeup? If you had your favorite flowers on the kitchen table? If you lit a candle while you read for 15 minutes?

You cannot possibly be unchanged by doing something for YOU. This your permission slip to add one thing you LOVE to your day!

4. Be Creative/Start a Hobby

One of my FAVORITE ways to add something I love to my day is by being creative! Creativity and making is such a BIG part of who I am. It took some time to realize it, but I am a better mom when I’ve made time to make something. I try hard to show you how creativity lives in my life through everything I do.

I cannot encourage you enough to find something creative you love doing. It’s a great way to express yourself and have some time that’s just for you.

You might be tempted to say you’re not creative. But in this interview my friend Eileen West challenges that way of thinking by saying, “If you think you’re not creative, you haven’t found your medium yet.”

Play. Experiment. Try something new every week or every month if you don’t already have a creative outlet. Look for creative workshops in your area or find some interest groups around your hobby.

Who knows? You may even make some new friends while you’re creating!

5. Do work you’re passionate about

Another way I maintain my identity is to do work I’m passionate about. This wasn’t always the case for me.

For a long time I got caught up in doing all the mom things I thought I was “supposed” to do (aka PTA, room mom, etc), but those things didn’t fill me up. I still felt like something was missing.

That’s when I started life coach training and my life changed for the better.

The thing you’re passionate about doesn’t have to be work. You could find a charity that’s meaningful to you. You could start a blog. You could start a meet-up group around something you love..

The possibilities are endless, my friend.

I promise when you find something to do that’s super meaningful for you it can transform your life and the way you feel.

Understand and truly believe it’s not selfish to take time for yourself.

Lastly, my wish for you is that you completely embrace and truly believe that it’s not selfish to take time for yourself! It takes time and practice, so don’t listen to those nasty comments your inner critic tells you. Don’t let feelings of guilt keep you from making yourself a priority.

You’re able to be an even better wife and mother when you DO take time for yourself! As the saying goes, you can’t pour from an empty cup. And doing things that light you up, that make you happy, or bring a little extra joy to your day fills your cup.

It doesn’t matter what stage of momming you’re in for this to apply! It applies to everyone one of us.

If this is something that comes easily to you, encourage another mama would you?

We’re all in this together!

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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Meet This Maker: Jennifer Wilson

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Hey there! I’m back with another episode of Meet This Maker, the interview series about all things creativity and making!

This episode is special because I’m chatting with someone I’ve followed online and admired for years! Jennifer Wilson of SimpleScrapper.com is a memory keeper and has created an online membership community for her fellow scrapbookers, along with courses, a book club, and a monthly digital magazine!

Jennifer isn’t just about making pretty pages of her family’s memories! Her message is all about supporting women in understanding the creative process that works best for them and showing them how to include creative time in their lives. Which is totally in line with everything we talk about here, too!

We had the BEST conversation! You DON’T have to be a memory keeper (or even have an interest in memory keeping) to get so much value from our time together. I know you’ll love hearing how Jennifer stays motivated to keep making and what she thinks is the foundation for being able to provide worth and value.  

Jennifer has so much wisdom to share! You don’t want to miss it!

And this week I’m making it even easier for you to hear our guest! You can either watch the video or listen to the audio only! You choose what works best for you!

 

 

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (2:15) Jennifer tells us about realizing being creative is part of who she is

  • (4:00) Being creative every day

  • (6:30) Growing up crafting with her mom and grandma

  • (7:50) How being creative reminds Jennifer of who she is

  • (12:30) The things she SHOULD be doing

  • (14:04) What self care looks like

  • (17:56) Needing to feel relaxed before jumping into a project

  • (21:10) Thinking about what my objective is in business

  • (25:20) The significance of memory keeping as a hobby

  • (30:34) Pick of the week

The people Jennifer mentioned in during our conversation:

You can find Jennifer:

Make sure to watch the shorter segment of rapid fire questions I did with Jennifer!  You’ll want to hear what the number one thing she’d tell herself of five years ago is, and you’ll definitely want to watch to find out what the best advice she’s ever received is...it’s SO GOOD! Be sure to check it out here!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Three Things I Stopped Doing to Enjoy Life More

 

I was cleaning up in my craft room last week and I came across a journal from 1997.

Y’all! 1997!!!

How I still have this journal I don’t know, but reading through it made me think about how far I’ve come and how much I’ve changed. What came through loud and clear was just how long I struggled with the things I wrote about in my journal.

Maybe you recognize some of the struggles...

  • Feeling like I’m not enough
  • Feeling my body wasn’t what it should be
  • Having a loud inner critic pointing out all my faults
  • Caring too much what other people think

...And on and on and on.

Gladly, I’m beyond those struggles, and you can be too, sweet friend. Seriously, if I can do this, it’s possible for anyone.

Feeling better doesn’t happen overnight, but there are clear things I stopped doing to help me get past the crap and move forward in my life.

 

I stopped feeling like I don’t belong.

For years, no matter where I was, I felt like I didn’t fit in.

Mommy and me class.
At lunch with the girls.
Dinner parties for my husbands work.
At the mall. Pretty much anywhere.

I assumed so much about other people. I assumed what they liked or didn’t like, and I assumed they had all their shit together and were five steps ahead of me. I was REALLY hard on myself, too, feeling like I didn’t have much to offer to conversations or relationships.

Here’s what I know for sure about this...you can’t belong anywhere if you don’t first belong to yourself.

Brene Brown talks about this in her latest book Braving the Wilderness.

She writes,

“Stop walking through the world looking for confirmation that you don’t belong. You will always find it because you’ve made that your mission. Stop scouring people’s faces for evidence that you’re not enough. You will always find it because you’ve made that your goal. True belonging and self-worth are not goods; we don’t negotiate their value with the world. The about who we are lives in our hearts. Our call to courage is to protect our wild heart against constant evaluation, especially our own. No one belongs here more than you.”

Damn! Truth bomb!

Learning to love myself, exactly as I am, and reconnect with what I love and what brings me joy helped me to eventually belong to myself. It helped me to stop searching for the evidence that I DON’T fit in, but instead walk through my days knowing I do.

 

I stopped chasing perfect.

Y’all. Perfect doesn’t exist!

So much of my angst was because I wanted to be perfect in everything I did. And the real kicker was, when I didn’t measure up to the perfect vision in my head, I beat myself up about it. I talked a lot about this in this post.

I was able to let go of perfection by learning to live with intention and celebrate my progress. I started using things like Powersheets to get clear on goals and to be encouraged by making little by little progress, and embrace that DONE is better than perfect.

Friends, life isn’t happening TO you. You get to decide how you want to spend your time and how you want to feel. Take control and you’ll be amazed at what you can do!

 

I stopped believing all the crappy things I thought about myself.

A lot of my struggles were stories I was believing about myself, stories I bought into somewhere along the way. I learned to turn down the volume on my inner critic. I learned how to think new thoughts.

It’s hard to rewire an old story, but it can totally be done! It kind of goes back to the Brene Brown quote above...when you’re looking for something, you’re gonna find it. And when you say something to yourself over and over and over again you’re going to believe it. Create a new story for yourself, and change what you’re telling yourself over and over again to something more positive and loving and kind.

For me to do that, I had to start looking for evidence of new stories. Evidence of enoughness, of celebrating my progress instead of perfection, of loving my body for all it does and can do today. It feels so much better to tell myself positive things and look for the goodness in my life and find that it’s there in abundance.

And here’s a little BONUS for you, because I love you. This one is something that you can begin to implement TODAY!

I stopped taking everything so seriously.

Friend, it’s HARD to be perfect. It doesn’t feel good to chase perfection and constantly be falling short.

The more perfect I tried to be, the more serious I was about #allthethings. From what I was wearing for a dinner party to the goodies bags I was making for my son’s birthday party, I wanted it all to be perfect. There was no time to relax or have fun because I constantly felt “on.”

But here’s the thing...life is supposed to be FUN! Life isn’t meant to be hard, and again, there’s no such thing as perfect. (Are you starting to see how passionate I am about the perfection thing?)

I had to find the little things that brought me joy and make sure I included them in each day. I had to embrace imperfection and learn to celebrate the DOING of things, not the OUTCOME.

What do you notice about all these things?

Well, I’ll tell ya. They all required a shift in my mindset.

The mind is a powerful thing and the habits and old stories you’ve fallen into can absolutely be changed into good habits and more positive stories. You are worth the time and effort it will take to get there!

Do you have any old stories you’d like to change? Do you need to let go of perfection? Hop into the Facebook group and continue this conversation!

 

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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Meet This Maker: Jessica Burgess

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Hey there Makers! Today I’m excited to introduce you to Jessica Burgess. She’s the blogger and creative brain behind Fantabulosity.com where you can find recipes, home decor, fashion, party styling….basically #allthethings.

Jessica is a dear friend, and I LOVE any chance I get to talk with her. The energy she brings to what she does is contagious!

There is so much wisdom and goodness in the conversation I had with Jessica! I know you’ll love hearing how Jessica got started, how she found her creativity, and what spurred her on to start a blog. Her story is so relatable!

She also talked about what she has to say ‘yes’ and ‘no’ to in order to be creative and about how sometimes blogging gets a bad wrap! Jessica seriously had so much goodness to share!

You don’t want to miss it! Click here to watch now

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (1:22) Jessica tells us what being creative looks like for her
  • (2:19) Going against what the experts say
  • (4:00) Jessica was born wanting to be creative
  • (7:30) Now what?!
  • (8:43) Doing what you love
  • (12:00) Jessica wants women to make time for themselves
  • (14:19) People pleasing
  • (18:00) I’ll never know if I don’t ask
  • (20:45) I don’t want to be judged
  • (23:55) Pinterest was a game changer
  • (28:05) Jessica’s greatest influences
  • (33:20) She’s a fan of baby steps
  • (36:20) I’m ready for your money!
  • (37:50) Pick of the week

During our conversation we mentioned:

Jessica’s pick of the week:

You can find Jessica on her blog at Fantabulosity.com and on these social media platforms:

The fun didn’t end with this interview!

Jessica and I continued the conversation in a shorter second interview of rapid fire questions!

The shorter segment is just as good as the full interview! I know you’ll love it! Jessica told us what her best mistake was and so much wisdom came with it! You don’t want to miss hearing all about it!

Make sure you’re in the Facebook group so you can watch the bonus interview! Click here to watch!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Meet This Maker: Eileen West

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Hello and welcome to episode 6 of Meet This Maker!

Today I’m talking with photographer, Eileen West. I’m so excited for you to get to know Eileen! Not only is she a great photographer, she’s also a fellow life coach, and I love how she’s able to bring the two together!

We had such a FUN conversation! So much of the creativity we talked about applies to life in general. You do not have to be a creative to get some golden nuggets out of our conversation!

We talked about owning our craft, comparing ourselves to others who are already doing the same work, and about the “stories” we tell ourselves. Eileen had so many thoughtful things to say, you don’t want to miss this interview! Plus, you won’t believe what her parents did to facilitate her creativity as a child!

Even though we were meant to be talking all things creative, Eileen put on her life coach hat and gave us some amazing tools to use in our everyday life! Who doesn’t want tools to help us live a better life?!

You don’t want to miss it! Check it out here

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (1:50) Eileen tells us about creativity as a child
  • (4:20) Bringing more of herself to her photography
  • (5:20) There’s only one me!
  • (6:24) Add more joy to your life with THIS tool
  • (9:32) No one is gonna die!
  • (11:37) Setting aside time for creativity
  • (13:17) Eileen puts herself first
  • (16:40) Her AHa moment
  • (19:50) A call to push through
  • (25:00) I don’t want someone to tell me what to do!
  • (27:24) Eileen has a morning routine
  • (33:55) I just have to be ME!
  • (37:45) Creating is in our DNA
  • (39:00) What’s the worst thing that could happen?
  • (41:20) Pick(s) of the week

During our conversation we mentioned:

Eileen’s picks of the week:

Make sure to follow Eileen on Instagram! And you can find her photography online here and her life coaching online here.

The fun didn’t end with this interview! Eileen and I continued the conversation in a shorter second interview of rapid fire questions! I’ve said it before, and I’m saying it again...the rapid fire segment is SO GOOD! Seriously, y’all. You’re going to want to hear about the best advice Eileen’s ever received and what her best mistake was. So, so good!

Make sure you’re in the Facebook group so you can watch the bonus interview! Click here to watch!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Capturing Summer


Ah, summer!!!

Summer is the season of being outside, family BBQs, going to the pool, road trips, destination travel and staycations.

For me, summer means travel, and usually lots of it. And it’s the season I take the most photos. I can come home from a two week trip and easily have over 1,500 photos. I take photos left and right because I love capturing the details of the places we visit, as well as, capturing my family enjoying what we’re experiencing along the way.

This summer I decided to lighten my load and only use my iphone for photographing everything. I usually take my big camera along (a Nikon D700 and assorted lenses), but this year I wanted to experiment with using the camera that’s ALWAYS with me. I’m pretty pleased with all I was able to capture.

Now I’m NOT a professional by any means. I’m not looking to sell my photos or have them placed in a gallery. I’m just passionate about capturing my adventures as best I can, and traveling gets all my creative juices flowing! There’s nothing quite as inspiring for me as getting away from home. (If you’re looking for AMAZING travel photography, I can point you towards some of my favorite Instagram accounts.)

Here are several photos (taken with my iPhone) from my recent trips to demonstrate examples of what I’m usually taking photos of while I’m traveling. These are the categories I would say help us to remember the sense of the place we are exploring.

Looking down | The floor | The ground
I’m always looking for interesting designs in tiles and cobblestones.


Flowers
It often takes me twice as long as my family to go from point A to point B because I’m stopping to take photos of nearly every flower along the way!


Up close details | Good design | Repetition
I’m fascinated by architecture and design. I love getting up close to some of the tiny details I see.


Doors | Gates | Windows | Mailboxes
Doors and windows can be plain, but there are also some pretty amazing ones out there, too. And let’s not forget about gates! It’s always fun to see how different mailboxes can be from the ones we have here at home.


Strangers
Yep, that’s right! I’m always taking photos of people I don’t know. I love seeing and capturing locals doing what they do.


Stairs
There’s just something about an empty stairwell that makes me want to photograph it. Pretty much any empty space calls to me...an empty chair, bench, or an open door. Those things almost always get my attention.


Bicycles
Getting around by bicycle is just the way life is for a lot of people in other parts of the world. Seeing bicycles waiting for their owners makes we want to photograph them!


Red
I once heard in one of my photography classes...if you see something red, take a photo of it. You know what? I’ve never had any regrets living by that rule. Some of my favorite photos are of red things.


The BEST is when one or more of these categories collide!

Well, there you have it! A peek into my favorite things to photograph while I travel, besides my family, of course!

I’m particularly excited about all the sense of place photos I captured. I’ve decided I’m going to put them all into a photobook just because I love them so much.

I encourage you, no matter what you do or where you go, to capture a few moments as photos. Looking back on them later will help you relive your memories and help you cultivate feelings of gratitude for the experiences you’ve had.


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Meet This Maker: Jen Levin

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Hello! Welcome to Meet This Maker, the interview series about all things creativity and making!

This week I’m switching it up a bit, and I’m answering all the questions I’ve been asking my guests!

I hope you get to know me even better and learn something about me you didn’t already know!

I’m a wife and a mama to three teens. My oldest is going to college this fall! Being creative and making is a big part of my life.

It was so fun to get to tell you how I feel about creativity and share some of my experiences with you! You might be surprised at what I have to say “no” to in order to be creative...it’s not always about finding time!

This episode is especially good for those that struggle with perfectionism! You don’t want to miss it!

 

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things I discussed:

  • (0:40) I jumped in by talking about comparison and perfectionism!
  • (3:49) When I’m most ME
  • (4:55) Perfect doesn’t exist!
  • (7:22) It’s ok to want what you want
  • (8:55) Saying yes to myself
  • (10:00) I haven’t always shared ALL of myself with people
  • (11:05) Travel is always creative inspiration
  • (14:06) Perfectionism plays a part in learning!
  • (15:40) When creativity came alive for me
  • (20:17) Just start!
  • (22:00) Perfectionism is fear
  • (23:05) Pick of the week

The ladies who give me so much inspiration:

Other favorite things I mentioned:

I also continued the FUN by answering all the rapid fire questions I’ve been asking my guests in my Facebook group! I even surprised myself with what my favorite creative tool is! It’s not what you’d think it would be!

You also don’t want to miss seeing me struggle to answer one of my own questions! LOL Seriously! Make sure you’re part of the Facebook group so you can see all the exclusive short answer interviews I’ve done with my guests so far! 


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Meet This Maker: Traci Huffman

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Hello! Welcome to episode four of Meet This Maker, the interview series about all things creativity and making!

This week I’m talking with Traci Huffman.  Traci is a photographer, and I’m so excited for you to meet her because she is one of my dearest friends!

She’s also a wife and a mama to twin girls. She’s the perfect person to talk about how becoming a mother changed the creativity in her life because she thought the creativity gene in her family had skipped her! If you take one look at her photos, you’ll see that’s not true!

Y’all, our conversation was SO GOOD. I know you’ll love hearing how Traci felt the first time she told someone she was a photographer because she gets really honest about what that brought up for her. If you’re creative, you know it isn’t always easy to own what you do!

And, gosh, she gives some great advice about what she says “no” to in order to be creative...seriously, it’s something we all need to be reminded of! Not only that, she shared an awesome podcast list and so many other things that make this interview SO GOOD! You don’t want to miss it!

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (3:56) Traci tells us about the first time she told someone she was a photographer
  • (5:14) It’s not just about pretty pictures
  • (6:53) What Traci says ‘no’ to in order to be creative
  • (7:52) What she says ‘yes’ to in order to be creative
  • (8:18) Shifting photography from a hobby to a business
  • (9:44) Standing out among other photographers
  • (11:40) Everyone is not your competition
  • (14:00) Traci’s favorite podcasts
  • (15:50) Switching from learning to doing
  • (17:15) The effect her kids had on her creativity
  • (18:39) Who Traci admires most
  • (24:14) Traci’s advice for the woman who doesn’t love being in the picture
  • (26:25) Pick of the week

You can find Traci here:

Podcasts:

Laura Foote Photography

Gina Zeidler 

The whole team at Cultivate What Matters

The Making Things Happen Intensive

Amy and Jordan Photography

Kaitlyn James Photography 

This was such a fun interview with lots of information and resources, but I also did a FUN rapid fire question and answer with Traci exclusively for my Facebook group. Not only did she answer my questions but she offered so much MORE!

You do not want to miss hearing why she almost always takes her camera with her when she leaves the house...hint, it has nothing to do with taking pictures! And, you’ll definitely want to watch to find out what the best advice she’s ever received is, especially if you’re a small business owner! This is one Facebook interview you do not want to miss! 


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Meet This Maker: Kristin Tweedale

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Hey! Hey! It’s time for another awesome Meet This Maker interview!

Today, I’m so happy to introduce you to Kristin Tweedale of The Awesome Ladies Project.

I’ve been following Kristin for a long time. We are fellow scrapbookers and she has a fierce love of stories just like me! I’ve wanted to talk to her for the longest time, and I’m SO EXCITED it finally happened!

Kristin coined the term and calls herself a Feminist Scrapbooker! Watch our conversation to find out what a feminist scrapbooker is, and how important it is to share our own stories. You might be surprised by her description.

She also co-hosts a terrific podcast called Crafty Ass Female and has a community and course at The Awesome Ladies Project.

Our conversation was so good! It’s easy to see how passionate Kristin is about stories, in fact, she believes that empowering women to tell their own stories is the reason that she was put on this Earth. I know you’ll love hearing about how Kristin got to where she is today because it wasn’t a straight path. You’ll see how everything we do prepares us for what’s coming!

She talked about how being creative saved her in school and the importance of talking about mental health. So many of us suffer from mental illnesses, and Kristin believes the more we talk about it, the better we can feel about it being part of our story.

You do not want to miss this interview!

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:
 

  • (1:00) Kristin tells us what a feminist scrapbooker is

  • (3:24) What she wishes she had from her grandmother

  • (6:25) Kristin tells us whether she’s been creative her whole life or not

  • (8:00) Education in the US and the creative mind, they don’t necessarily go together

  • (12:04) The start of the winding road of jobs that fueled Kristin’s  love of creativity and stories

  • (15:20) Chronic headaches were part of life for a time

  • (19:42) You are the best person to tell your story

  • (22:05) What Kristin says “no” to so she can be creative

  • (26:10) When tomatoes have stories

  • (35:54) Kristin’s greatest creative influences are

  • (37:29) Anyone talking about mental health is inspiring

  • (45:06) Pick of the week

Kristin’s book | 100 Days of All About Me: 100 Introspective Prompts About Your Right Now Life
Kristin’s workbook | 100 Days of All About Me: Workbook
Ali Edwards can be found here
Cleo Wade’s instagram is here
Info about Edgar Wright
Movie "Baby Driver" is here

You can find Kristin doing #allthethings online in all these places:

Instagram 
Twitter
Pinterest 
YouTube 

Kristin’s websites: The Awesome Ladies Project and rukristin

Make sure you check out everything she has going on!

I also did a FUN rapid fire question and answer with Kristin that you can get access to in my Facebook community. It was SO GOOD I might love it more than the full interview! Asking her what the best advice she’s ever received sparked such a great conversation about perfection and learning that you don’t want to miss! She made several AMAZING points, and gave us so much to think about. Seriously, if you’ve ever struggled with perfectionism, you don’t want to miss it!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Meet This Maker: Sara McDermott

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Hello! Welcome to Meet This Maker, the interview series about all things creativity and making!

I am so excited to introduce you to and welcome Sara McDermott of Sunniest Side Up to Meet This Maker!

Sunniest Side Up is a paper goods shop specializing in puns, spreading positivity and cultivating connections. In addition to clever greeting cards, Sara also offers custom dog illustrations!

Though Sara is a greeting card designer and illustrator, that’s not the only way she’s creative. You’ll want to know how else she’s expressing herself...it’s something we can ALL do right now, no talent necessary!

Our conversation was so, so good. I know you’ll love hearing how Sara makes time to be creative even though she has a day job. She tells us what she says “no” to so she has time to create and what she says “yes” to to keep her business moving forward! I definitely could’ve talked so much longer with Sara. She had SO MUCH goodness to share.

You don’t want to miss it!

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:

  • (1:37) Sara tells us about art school unlearning

  • (3:03) What creativity is for Sara and how she answers the “what do you do?” question

  • (5:45) Getting into the zone

  • (6:47) What Sara says “no” and “yes” to in order to have creative time and keep her business moving forward

  • (9:12) Sara shares how important accountability is

  • (12:03) Friends that don’t get it

  • (14:00) Moving from learning to DOING

  • (16:15) Who is Sara’s greatest creative influence?

  • (19:14) Doing it all with a full time job

Danielle Spurge can be found at https://www.merriweathercouncil.com/
Sara’s pick of the week: The Raise Your Hand Say Yes podcast

Follow Sara on Instagram because she has the best cards/art AND her stories are awesome! You can also find her on Facebook here.

Send some happy mail to your friends with some of Sara’s awesome cards! Order yours here.

Sara and I had a lot of fun with a short segment of rapid fire questions that’s exclusively for my Facebook group. I couldn’t believe the answer she gave about cooking vs painting, and I LOVE the best advice she’s ever received! It was such a GREAT reminder for all of us, creative or not! Plus, you won’t believe what her favorite creative tool is.  Click here to watch!

 


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Meet This Maker: Meghan Coleman

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Hello! Welcome to Meet This Maker, the interview series about all things creativity and making!

I’m so excited to share with you one of my dearest friends, Meghan Coleman

Meghan is a wife and a mama to two sweet littles and she’s also a creative.

Though she’s creative in several ways, lately her main focus for making has been in hand lettering. Her work is truly so beautiful.

Our conversation was so, so good. I know you’ll love hearing how Meghan makes time to be creative despite having a day job, two small kids, a house, and a husband! We could’ve talked all day! I guess that’s why we’re besties!

You don’t want to miss it! Click the video below to catch the interview now! 

 

 

Here’s the recap and links to the people and things we discussed in the interview:
 

  • (2:00) Meghan tells us when she started accepting that creativity is part of who she is

  • (4:35) Being creative as a stress release and fun and not for some more grand purpose, especially with little ones

  • (6:55) We don’t have to do things perfectly!

  • (9:37) What Meghan says “no” and “yes” to in order to have creative time

  • (15:25) Sharing our creativity with others and how that can also be seeking validation from others about the quality of our work.

  • (19:40) Getting out of learning mode and actually doing

  • (21:55) Making creativity a business

  • (29:20) Putting your personal stamp on your work so that it’s YOU

  • (36:14) Pick of the week


Brene Brown and Brene’s TED talk

Lara Casey

Powersheets 

Lindsay Letters on Instagram

The Alison Show on Instagram
 

I also did a FUN rapid fire question and answer with Meghan. She totally surprised me with a couple of her answers! You’ll want to hear what the number one thing she’d tell herself of five years ago is, and you’ll definitely want to watch to find out what the best advice she’s ever received is...it’s SO GOOD! Click here to join my Facebook group and get access to Meghan's Q+A now! 


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, a space for women makers and creatives that provides permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth. Click here to join the group!

 

Introducing My New Series!

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From my early twenties I’ve had a desire to interview people. People fascinate me, and I believe every single person on this planet has a story. Not just any story, but a story worth sharing.

What makes them tick?
What are they proud of?
What would they do differently if they could?
What are they excited about?
What have they learned?
How do they express themselves?

I want to know #allthethings because I believe we have a lot to learn from others, and it broadens our own perspectives on life! And, I think it also reinforces the idea that we are all more alike than different and gives us permission to be our wonderful, imperfect selves.

In my mind, I’ve had variations of what these interviews could be and the questions I’d ask. Certainly, as I’ve changed and evolved, so have the questions. I’ve never put this idea into action, however, the idea has never left me. It keeps showing up, almost as if it’s taunting me.

Has that happened to you? Have you ever had idea you haven’t put into action and it will not leave you?

Up to now, I’ve held the belief that a project like this needed to be for some “purpose.” I needed to be writing a book, creating a podcast, or doing research for something. Basically, I couldn’t just interview people because I want to. For FUN.

Or can I???

I’ve been sharing a lot with you lately about following my curiosity and how I’m truly coming to understand the importance of having fun in my business. I’ve also been talking about creativity and making a lot more, too, because it’s my MUST

Giving myself permission to have fun and follow the things that excite me have led me to not being able to ignore my desire to hear people’s stories any longer.

I am SO EXCITED to tell you it’s finally happening!

I am creating a video interview series called Meet This Maker.

Completely in line with my creative side, I’m interviewing fellow creatives to find out what creativity means to them and how they make time for it in their life. Some of the ladies I’m talking to have turned their love of making into a business, and others are making just for the sake of making. These ladies are so inspiring, which totally calls out to the personal growth side of me, too! I hope hearing from them gives you permission to begin thinking about what’s possible for you, and the inspiration and motivation to start.

It’s been SO FUN! And the best part is, I’ll be sharing these interviews with YOU!

Every week I’ll be sharing an interview on my blog. I’m trying to keep it around 30 minutes (less than 45 minutes for sure!) so you can easily fit watching it into your day. I’m a few interviews in, and I’ve already learned SO MUCH! There have been so many good points made, and let me tell you, you are going to LOVE these ladies! You don’t want to miss this!

These interviews will cover a wide range of genres of creativity: hand lettering, photography, scrapbooking, quilting, painting, cooking, fashion, etc. I want to expand your vision of what being creative is because so many of us fall into thinking we’re not creative because we can’t draw or paint well. It’s really so much more than that! When we are creative, we are able to express ourselves as individuals. Whatever we make comes from within us, not from the person we are to other people like our husbands, kids, parents, employers, etc.

Maybe you’re already practicing being creative in your everyday life...YAY!! I’m excited for you to watch the conversations and see behind the scenes of these makers to find out how they fit creativity into their lives and what they do to keep the creative juices flowing so they feel more fulfilled and inspired to keep creating.

But wait! There’s MORE! Sorry, I couldn’t resist. ;)

I’m doing a separate short segment video of rapid fire questions that are both juicy and silly to be shared only in my Facebook group.  This segment is turning out to be as valuable as the longer interview!

I’ve enjoyed continuing the conversation, and I’ve been blown away by hearing some of the best advice they’ve ever received, some of which I’ve already started applying to my own life. Make sure you’re in my Facebook group so you don’t miss one of these mini segments!

So there you have it! I hope you grab a cup of coffee or tea OR, better yet, a glass of champagne, take a break from all that’s going on, and let yourself be inspired by these ladies and dream of what’s possible for YOU!


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Behind The Scenes

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I love sharing my content, and I sincerely hope it makes a difference in your life whether it’s giving you encouragement to try something creative, a tool for better living that you’ve never heard of, or inspiration to make a few changes so you can begin moving towards the life of your dreams.

I feel incredibly honored and privileged to do this work, and I thank you for being part of my tribe!

As much as I love creating useful content for you, I also want to have a relationship with you. I want to get to know you & you to get to know me. I’m inviting you to a personal 1:1 conversation with me. You’re ALWAYS welcome to reply to my newsletters...I read and respond to every reply, and I love knowing what resonates with you.

It’s been a while since I’ve shared a “behind the scenes” Postcard with you. I love doing these periodically as a way for you to get to know me a better and see what I’m up to in my personal life.

I’m using my favorite journaling prompt that I learned from Ali Edwards years ago. You can find this prompt and others I love to use in this FREE download.  These prompts are a great starting point to document your life!


Around here...

the school year is winding down, and I’m fully experiencing the bittersweet feelings of having my oldest graduate from high school this week. I couldn’t be more excited for her as she sets out for college in the fall! I know she’s going to have a great time and grow so much.

BUT at the same time, I’m sad that she may never live in our house again. And I’m wondering what it will feel like with only two kids in the house. And the worry...I’ve always had a problem with worrying. I’ll definitely be implementing all of the self coaching tools I know to keep my worry and anxiety to a minimum. Wish me luck!

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Around here...

I’m more than half way finished with #the100dayproject. I’m doing 100 days of embroidery stitches, and I’m loving it so far! While I am happy I’m learning more about embroidery, I’m being stretched (my word of the year) to become more comfortable with not having an exact plan for the stitching.

Usually a blank canvas is very intimidating to me because I’m afraid I might mess it up. This project has helped me lean into that. Adding new stitches every day changes the look of the piece as I go, so it still comes up from time to time, but I’m not nearly as intimidated as I once was.

It’s also showing me that I CAN show up for myself for an extended period of time. In the past, I’ve held onto the story that I don’t finish things I start, so this has helped me change that story to something more positive. I’m so grateful for that! I know it’s going to serve me well for a long time.


Around here...

I’m making list after list as I prepare for our family vacation NEXT WEEK.

I LOVE traveling, and I’m excited to share our experiences on social media. We’re heading to Europe, so I know there will be lots of food, sights, and flowers to photograph. Make sure you’re following me on Instagram (insert link to insta) where I’ll be sharing mostly in stories.

Are you traveling this summer?  

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Around here...

I’m OBSESSED with The Handmaid’s Tale! My husband and I can’t wait for Wednesday evening each week. I don’t know why because it brings me so much angst, but I keep showing up. LOL! The show is often intense, but it’s so well done! If you don’t watch, I highly recommend it.

Do you watch? Tell me your prediction for what’s next!


Around here...

I’m leaning into what feels FUN for me in my business, and that means things are shifting a bit. I couldn’t be more excited about the new things I’m planning and doing! I think you’re going to love them, too!

I’m temporarily discontinuing my offers and working solely on building my community. I believe we’re better together, and I want to surround myself with and support women who also believe in the magic that happens when women support and love on one another.

My message and content will focus on creativity, making, and personal growth.

You see, this is who I am. I am a maker, AND I love all things self help and personal growth. I love working on bettering myself and creating an AWESOME life.

I want to share my experiences in making with you. I want to share my experiences in growing, changing, and becoming the woman I’m meant to be. I want to share my favorite resources and tools for creativity, living with intention, and creating a life you LOVE.

We all want to live the best, most fulfilling life possible, and I believe we can...together. That’s where my Facebook group comes in. And it’s got a new name!

It’s now called Making {YOU}. It’s a space for women makers and creatives that gives you permission to believe in what's possible and the inspiration to go create it, all with a side of personal growth.

I’ve got some special content planned for the group, so hop on over and JOIN US! And bring a friend! The more the merrier! It’s gonna be FUN!

No matter whether we connect via this blog, on Instagram, or on Facebook, I am so, SO GLAD to have you in my tribe. Thank you!

Be sure to share this email with a girlfriend you think would love to get some inspiration, encouragement, and tools for better living. I’d love to meet her.


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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Making {YOU}, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

The Worst Advice I Ever Received

One thing you may not know about me is that I was once an elementary school teacher, and my first year of teaching changed the whole trajectory of my life!

As most any teacher will tell you, your first year of teaching is hard. Everything is new. Every school has their way of doing things. Every teaching team has its own dynamics, and getting a handle on those things AND learning to manage your classroom and lessons can be overwhelming.

My first year wasn’t just hard, it was miserable. Sure, there are some things that were good. I learned A LOT, but, overall, it wasn’t a good fit for me, and I felt it mentally and physically. Despite that, I did what I thought I was supposed to do and signed a contract to come back for a second year.

I’m not sure when the new contracts came out. Maybe March or April. But between signing that contract and the end of the school year, things escalated for me and I could. not. wait. to find a way out of another year there.

I relaxed for a bit in the first part of summer (the REAL reason I became a teacher if I’m being honest) then started looking for other work. Serendipitously, I found a nanny position in FL that seemed interesting. I interviewed for it, fell in love with the family, and LOVED the idea of leaving my childhood home to start anew.

I got the job and I immediately accepted! All I needed to do was let the school know I wouldn’t be coming back, pack my things, and I’d be all set. I could figure out the details as I went along.

Here’s where it gets interesting. Remember I’m only one year out of college...24 years old and this was a SUPER small town and school district.

Naively, I let my principal and superintendent know I wouldn’t be coming back to school 10 days before the new school year was to begin. Apparently, there were rules and a standard procedure about how to break my contract that I never knew, and my superintendent was not happy.

We had several phone conversations during which he advised me to stay. He said he would have no choice but to pursue having my teaching certificate revoked if I chose not to come back.

Now as a people pleaser, normally, a threat like that would have crippled me into conforming. But this time was different.

This time I KNEW with every cell of my being that I was meant to make that move. I was meant to leave for this new position. I felt it so strongly that nearly 22 years later I still remember that feeling. It felt strong, calm, and peaceful. It felt like the good kind of butterflies in my stomach. It felt light and airy. It felt like KNOWING.

So on a recorded call, my superintendent asked me if I would be returning on Aug 10th to my position and I calmly, confidently, without one single doubt about what I was doing answered, “No I will not be coming back,” despite the consequences. Despite everyone ELSE’S displeasure.

I moved to FL and I never looked back. To this day, I KNOW it was the right thing for ME.

I shudder to think of how drastically different my life would be had I taken the advice to stay.

I’m very tuned into my intuition, but I don’t recall a time when I ever felt it so strongly guiding me, and in hindsight, I know why.

You see, it was in the family that I started working for that I met my husband! Once we were married, we lived in FL for 17 years and had three awesome kids. It’s been nearly 22 years since we met, and he’s still my BFF!

Wanna know what the beautiful thing about this is?

We ALL have this. Every one of us has an inner gps to help guide us towards what’s best for us. We just have to learn to tune into it, and even more, actually follow what it’s telling you because it will never lead you wrong.

So how can you learn to tune into your intuition?

Get still or spend quiet time alone.

When you create some quiet time in your day and you can be alone with your thoughts, you will begin to notice a small whisper of a voice. THAT voice is your intuition. She might say something like…

Wouldn’t it be cool if…?
Let’s take a nap.
Start the passion project you’ve been dreaming of.
Call _______.

The loud voice that’s usually barking orders, telling you what you should do, and probably pointing out all the things you’re doing wrong? That’s your inner critic, and it’s time to move her to the back burner.

Get familiar with the way your body feels. 

Think back to a time when you made a decision that you wholeheartedly knew was the right thing and things played out exactly as you wanted and expected them to. How did you feel in your body? What did it physically feel like to KNOW what was right for you?

Conversely, think of a time when you knew the right thing to do and you didn’t listen. You did the opposite. How did THAT feel in your body? How does it feel when you’re in a job/relationship/an event/etc you KNOW is not what’s best for you?

Once you can differentiate between the two feelings, it’s easier to know when you’re intuition is leading the way. Then, just one time follow it. See where it leads you.

Learning to recognize and follow your intuition is a practice for sure, and it requires trust.

Trust yourself.

Why am I sharing all this? Because I want you to remember that only YOU know what’s best for you. All we can do for each other is share our knowledge and experiences and witness each other. But YOU are the expert at you!  

Tell me about a time you listened to your gut!  

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When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Live Your Legacy NOW, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Permission To Follow Your Curiosity

I’m someone who likes to have things figured out. I like to have a plan. I like to know where I’m going. I like to know what’s coming next, so, Lord help us all, PLEASE don’t try to surprise me! #controlissues

One of my favorite authors is Elizabeth Gilbert. Liz (because we’re totally on a first name basis) encourages us to follow our curiosity. To follow the breadcrumbs of things that seem interesting to us. To create for the sake of creating. To create for yourself, not for any other purpose.

For a girl that thrives on having a plan and strives for each day to feel purposeful, that’s SO HARD!!

And yet, here I am! My business and my life weren’t lighting me up anymore, so it was time to do things differently.

For the last few months I’ve been following my curiosity in my business and my life. I’ve been allowing myself to create for the sake of creating. I’ve been writing content that feels vulnerable with no other purpose than to share my experience. I’ve been participating in #the100dayproject, making a quilt, and scrapbooking some of our family photos.

And you know what?

It’s been so awesome! It feels so freeing.

When I started my business, I put my head down and I started the checking boxes off my to-do list. I LOVE checking boxes because I feel productive and purposeful. But, doing that made me feel tied down and restricted. I was following the plans I thought I should and creating content that was meaningful to me, but ultimately what I thought my followers would like. It felt LESS like purposeful work and more like WORK work.

I wasn’t following my curiosity. I wasn’t allowing myself to create just to create. I had a plan and I was sticking to it.

Then my business coach gave me the assignment of having FUN. How could I have more fun in my life? How could I have more fun in my business?

Who knew how hard that would be?! Maybe you can relate? Maybe the thought of having FUN and doing something just CAUSE seems crazy right now?

Let me tell you, though, that’s when things started to shift for me.

Having fun, giving myself permission to create, and following the breadcrumbs of what lights me up is leading me towards content that feels like it’s coming from within me instead of from my head. It makes my business feel more fun. It makes my life feel more fulfilled. It’s brought me back to my roots. I’ve ALWAYS been creative, and I’m most ME when I’m making something with my hands.

I’m excited to say my business is shifting to include more creativity. Creativity with a side of personal growth. I’ll be working on new offers over the summer and into the fall.

Operating from my heart instead of my head is best for me, the people I love, and the people I serve. I’m guessing it would be that way for you, too. And the craziest part? It gets me the most results, too.

I believe it’s possible for you to have FUN in your business.

I believe our best work comes from what we’re most excited about.  

I believe we can all bring more of what we love into our lives, despite all the responsibilities we have.

Consider this your permission slip to start following your curiosity. Permission to start creating a different kind of offer in your business. Permission to play with paint, yarn, or your camera. Permission to do something fun that’s just for YOU, but that will inherently serve all OTHER areas of your life.

Hit reply and tell me what you’d do if you JUST had to follow the breadcrumbs around what’s light you up, or share it in the Facebook group. I wanna hear from you! 

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When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Live Your Legacy NOW, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

My 100 Day Project

You know Elle Luna is one of my favorite authors because she wrote this book.

Well, several years ago she started a creative movement called The 100 Day Project. The idea is to choose a creative action and do it for 100 days in an effort to improve your skills.

This project came along just as I was beginning to really explore my MUST  and how important being creative and making is for my happiness.

I’ve committed to participating this year, and as I write this, I’m 30 days in.

There are so many creative things that call to me...photography, quilting, memory keeping, and playing with paint. I also love slowing down to stitch things by hand, so I chose to do 100 days of embroidery stitching.

Unlike many other creatives, I didn’t choose it so I’d improve my embroidery skills. For me, it’s about so much more than that, like leaning into having more fun

Of course, I knew I’d learn something from this project, but I didn’t anticipate learning so much so quickly. After being a quarter of the way finished there are a couple of things that stand out...

Knowing my why has made all the difference in me sticking with it and showing up every day to put a few stitches in my fabric. I know there will be days when I really don’t want to sit down and stitch. Remembering why I’m doing this crazy project in the first place is helping me stay committed to it.

I’ve tried to do this project a couple of times before by taking a photo a day, but I didn’t make it beyond day four or five.  

Looking back, I can see I was focused on the end result and overwhelmed. I imagined that they’d need to be completely Instagram worthy photos so I could post them every day as I went along, and I’d gather all of them into a beautiful book at the end of the project.  

Clearly, I was worried and focused on the end PRODUCT, not the reason WHY I wanted to take a photo each day. I was clueless as to what I wanted to learn or why I wanted to do it in the first place. Being focused on the wrong thing paralyzed me.

I can see how this shows up again and again in my life. Maybe you can, too.

Maybe you’ve been holding back on creating a new offer for your clients because you’ve been focused on the OUTCOME rather than understanding WHY you want it in the first place. Understanding the why can help you stay motivated when the creating gets tough.

Maybe you launched a new product but your energy around it is fizzling out. That’s happened to me! Being clear about why you want your product out in the world and why someone should buy it will help you maintain your excitement for it.  

It’s ok to not know how my project will turn out.

Oh my goodness...how many times have I not started something because I wasn’t sure how it would turn out or I was worried it wouldn’t turn out as perfectly as I imagined it in my mind?

My perfectionism has kept me stuck and paralyzed more times than I care to admit!

That’s sort of the whole point for me in doing this project...to challenge myself to do something with no parameters and no end result in mind.

I have a hard time working without a pattern. In the past, a blank canvas was too much for me to handle. So much so, I couldn’t start.  I’d worry, what if I screw it up?

What if I do it wrong?

What if I don’t do it the way everyone else would do it?

But here’s the thing, even if i plan it out in advance, there’s still a good chance any creative project is not going to turn out the way I planned.

Perfection has no place in creative living.

There’s no right or wrong way to be creative, and there’s no right or wrong way to do life. I’m learning it’s all about what works for me and it doesn’t matter if it’s the same or different as what someone else would’ve done.

Maybe you’ve fussed over making sure your project goes exactly as planned. Did that create some stress for you? I’m sure it did! It has for me, for sure.

Maybe you’ve held off on starting a passion project that’s been on your mind for years because you’re stuck in not knowing how you’ll complete it.

You don’t have to know all the steps. Just start!

Part of the beauty of being creative is following the creativity where it leads. So often, the end result is WAY better than we could’ve ever imagined on our own!

Who knows what 100 days of stitching will look like. The end result doesn’t have to be pretty to be meaningful to me. It will represent letting go of perfection, learning to follow my curiosity, and leaning into showing up and doing the work, even when I don’t have a plan.

What would your 100 Day Project entail?  Share with me in my Facebook group!

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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Live Your Legacy NOW, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Reclaiming My Time

“Time isn’t something you find, it’s something you create.” ~unknown

When I started my business I had to learn to how to juggle my time between family, running our home, being on coaching calls, creating content, planning out my marketing, and all the other big and small things required of being a business owner.

When I start something, I tend to go all in. Everywhere I turned there was an expert telling me the best way to success in this entrepreneurial game, and it didn’t usually include lots of leisure time.

But, if you know me, and you remember this post,  you know I like to know I’m doing it “right,” no matter what it is.

So, of course, I bought into all the hoopla, and spent all my time and mental energy working on and thinking about my business. I’m not saying I was super productive or getting a lot of traction, but I was BUSY.

Can you relate? Maybe you’re running around doing #allthethings but never feeling like you’re getting anything “done well?”

As a side note, busy doesn’t equal productive. Just saying.

It didn’t take long before I felt like there was no time for ME. No time for the things I love.

I wanted to spend time journaling every day, but I didn’t know where I’d fit it in.

I wanted to spend time in my craft room, but every time I tried, I felt guilty because I knew there were so many other things I could be/should be doing instead.

I wanted to read more books, but it was hard to fit it in other than falling asleep with a book in my hand in bed.

Freedom is my number one value, and I wasn’t feeling very free. I decided to call BS on following all the entrepreneurial rules. I knew in my heart there HAD to be a way to do the work I wanted to do and still have time for ME.

I thought about what I wanted my day to look like. I knew I’d be happiest if I was able to do a little bit of all the things I love every day.

At the bare minimum I knew I could be happy reading for 15 or 20 minutes. I could make progress on a creative project if I worked on it for 15 minutes here or there. I could benefit greatly from spending 10 or 15 minutes journaling.

So I evaluated how I was spending my time and where I could fit these things in. I didn’t use one of those apps where you log your time all day for several days. I’m sure those are helpful, but I didn’t have the patience for that. I just looked at the different pockets of time in my day and how I used that time.

Know what I found?

I was spending a DISGUSTING amount of time mindlessly scrolling social media! And the worst part is that it was how I was starting my day.

I had plenty of time! I just wasn’t using my time well. I needed to reclaim my time!

I switched it up, and I’ve been much more diligent about being more intentional with social media. I’ve been starting my day reading and journaling, and I’m making time to be in my craft room, too.

I feel like a different person!

I’m much happier getting to do a little bit of all my favorite things every day. I’m not perfect with it, of course, but I’ve made big progress with it, and that’s all that matters really.

So why am I sharing all this with you?

Because when I learn something I like to pass it on. I don’t want to leave a sister to figure things out on her own when I’ve already been through the muck.

Because I want you to know that if something feels off in your business (or your life) you’re allowed to deviate from “the rules” and do whatever works best for you. You know the societal rules I’m talking about...the ones that make us believe that business owners, and especially moms, should be BUSY or we’re not worthy!

Because I want you to make sure you’re making time in your day for the things you love.

Because I want inspire you to take a look at how you’re spending your time. Too much TV? Too much social media? No time for YOU? Heck, maybe too much time doing stuff for other people like clients, kids, spouses, friends...the list goes on! See what you can do to use your time in a way that feels better for you!

Channel your inner Maxine Waters and reclaim your time! Reclaim it from the distractions, the interruptions, and all the things that don’t really matter. When you take back your time, you make space for more of what you love. And when you can include more of what you love in your day, you feel happier, more joyful, and like a more complete person.

I’d love to hear what your biggest time suck is and what you’re doing to reclaim it! Jump into the Facebook group and join the conversation! I’ll share what my CURRENT biggest one is that I’m working to shift to get the party started.

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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Live Your Legacy NOW, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.

 

Should and Must

“Let yourself be silently drawn by the strange pull of what you really love. It will not lead you astray.” ~Rumi

The Crossroads of Should and Must by Elle Luna is one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE books and resources! You NEED to read this book!

As the title suggests, it’s all about SHOULD and MUST.

Should.

I think nearly all of us have a list of things we do because we think we SHOULD. From choosing to get married or not, our careers, college, having children or not...you know, all those MAJOR life choices. Those decisions are heavily influenced by our childhood, family, and our society.

If we aren’t aware of it, it’s easy to wake up one day with a day planned full of shoulds.

Then there’s MUST.

As Elle Luna describes it, “Must is who we are, what we believe, and what we do when we are alone with our truest, most authentic self. It’s that which calls to us most deeply. It’s our convictions, our passions, our deepest held urges and desires--unavoidable, undeniable, and inexplicable....Must is when we stop conforming to other people’s ideals and start connecting to our own--and this allows us to cultivate our full potential as individuals.”

Oh my goodness! THIS!!!

I feel like I’ve been working up to this for a while now, like figuring out what success means to me and understanding how much I set myself up to not enjoy the very things that matter most to me. I’ve been leaning into having more fun, too! I’ve also been wanting to better understand who I am without all the roles I play each day (like mom, wife, coach, daughter, etc), who I am when I’m alone to just be me.

Recently, when I was in New York City with my daughter, we visited the modern art museum. While we were there, I had this knowing that suddenly came over me. I loved being surrounded by all the colors, textures, and techniques for making art.

I’ve been to countless art museums before, but I realized in an instant who/what I am. Left just to myself, alone in the world, I am a maker.

Creating. Making. It’s my MUST!

I am most myself when I’m in the middle of making something with my hands. I’ve tried for so long to do all the things I thought I SHOULD do and then wondered why it always felt like something was missing. I was ignoring my MUST.

So what does this mean for me and my work?

The honest answer is I HAVE NO IDEA!

Sure, that’s a little scary, but I’m mostly SO EXCITED!! I’m excited to embrace this part of myself that makes me happiest. I’m excited to share the part of me that makes me, ME.

I’m excited for my work to focus on encouraging women to be creative and make time for the things they love and helping them discover who they are without all their many roles. I’m excited to share all the things I love about creativity...artists and other makers, books, projects. All of it!

So, I’m tossing all the rules of business aside, and I’m starting the journey of my MUST.

Joseph Campbell said, “If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.”

My first step is inviting you to come along on this journey with me! Even though I can’t see the entire path, exploring all of this is going to be so much fun!

If you want to make sure to keep up with my journey, make sure you sign up for my weekly email updates here. And if you want a community to support you with YOUR must, join us in my FB group here

 

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Let's build community!

When you gather a group of women together, magic happens. I believe we are better together. Head over to my FREE Facebook group, Live Your Legacy NOW, where there’s tons of inspiration, support, tips & tricks for creating a life that feels more bold and fulfilling and where you can begin to plan the legacy you want to create.