Archive for February, 2014

Feb
28

Another Friday, which means another fabulous friend being featured in our 12 Fridays feature! Wow, that’s a lot of “F’s” in one sentence, isn’t it? Okay, moving on.

This is WEEK THREE.

Time to meet Lissy… 

When your kiddos play baseball, it’s a huge commitment at any age! Long, multiple practices a week, games on weekends, you just hope that they love it! Well, turns out, my boys did not, but we were committed, so what’s a mom to do? The only thing to hope for at that point is to meet some nice families in the process. Luckily, we did! Lissy’s family was one of them, which makes me forever grateful for baseball despite the long practices! I’ve had the honor of photographing their family twice. I’ve really enjoyed getting to know Lissy, she has the kindest heart and one of the best sense of humors around! Plus, she’s my fashion + style hero… it’s a real thing, trust me! That’s why you’ll be seeing more of her in the coming months! Lissy’s agreed to do a little “What to Wear” fashion segment on my blog–you’ll want to tune in for sure! I’m grateful for my dear friend and I’m excited for you to get to know her as well.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Wife of almost 12 years to my best friend. Mom of a Minecraft-obsessed boy and a girl who loves anything sparkly. Shopaholic. Project-aholic. Night owl. HGTV addict. Party planner. I love reading magazines. I love Starbucks and Target. And especially the Targets that have a Starbucks inside. I love Jimmy Fallon. And I really love Kate Spade. I love dressing up but I love sweats even more.

Q: What does a day in your life look like?

My mornings are usually spent getting some good uninterrupted work time in my studio after getting the kids to school. Back to volunteer at their school a couple hours later, back home to work a little more. Back to school to get my daughter, off to her gymnastics class which I LOVE watching, and back to school to pick up my son. After school… park time, play dates, swim lessons, and Starbucks pit stops. Family dinners most nights… then when the kids head to bed I’m ready for a glass of wine and some mindless TV!

Q: Tell us about Shoplissy.

My Etsy shop started out as mostly baby blankets, bibs, aprons, and purses… I love to sew and LOVE fabric. Then after making a party hat for my daughter’s 1st birthday a few years ago, I started selling those too… over the next year, that became the bulk of my business! I love creating something that is a special part of kids’ birthday parties and is often kept as a keepsake… and I love that I have customers who come back every year! Definitely didn’t set out to be a party hat designer but I love it.

Q: How do you stay balanced between being a mom and wife, owning your own business, staying involved at school and finding time for you? Any tips for those of us that struggle to do this?

Hmmm…. All those things are so important to me and I don’t want to give anything up! I am not the best at balance, I just don’t sleep a ton so I have a lot of hours in the day to fit everything in as long as I stay very organized. That is not a very good answer, is it?

My only real advice is to remember that family is more important than work! I remember my 3 year old daughter had a Mother’s Day event at her preschool a couple years back and they asked the kids questions about their moms. When my daughter was asked what her mom’s favorite thing to do was, she said “Make party hats!” YIKES. Wake up call for me… more time doing fun stuff with the kids, less time working when they’re awake!

Q: What do you want your children to remember most about their childhood?

I want them to remember all our fun traditions we have together… holiday traditions like putting a little Christmas tree in each of their rooms and going to Snowflake Lane, Saturday morning traditions like grabbing a hot chocolate and going to Barnes & Noble, doing “highs” and “lows” of our day at the dinner table, snuggling every night at bed time and talking about whatever is on their mind, yearly getaways to fun places like Seabrook… all those things they always look forward to, and look back on with great memories!

I also want them to remember that I didn’t always say “No”! I love saying “yes” to them when they’re not expecting it and seeing their faces light up! When they ask if we can stop for ice cream for no reason and I say yes! When they ask for a sleepover in the playroom on a school night and I say yes! When we’re at the store and they HAVE to have a toy and they know I don’t give in that easy… and I say yes. Moms have to say “no” SO much… it’s fun to be the bearer of good news sometimes too;)

Q: If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, how far back would you go and what advice would it be?

I could go back to myself at any (every!) point in time, and tell myself not to worry so much! I’m an over-thinker/obsesser!

Q: What inspires you?

Pretty, happy, colorful things! The bulletin board in my studio is full of clippings from magazines and catalogs that inspire me every day… it’s like my real-life Pinterest. Right now it’s catalog pictures of cute polka dot pillows and bold black and white striped rugs, minty green paint swatches I’m debating for my next home project, magazine pages of bright & fun Christmas decorating ideas for my daughter’s upcoming “Christmas in April” birthday party (yes, unusual theme this year!!), some fabric swatches I have had on there for years and can’t get enough of, drawings by my favorite little budding artist… all things I love and all things that make me happy to look at!

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

In the words of Audrey Hepburn, “Paris is always a good idea!”

Q: Do you have a favorite go-to weeknight dinner?

I LOVE my Breville Panini Press… such yummy dinners in 5 minutes. Most days I am a last-minute dinner maker since I can’t seem to meal plan to save my life, so I like quick and easy dinners that the kids eat without complaining;) Our faves are Tomato/Basil/Mozzarella Panini for us, and Turkey & Cheese Panini for the kids. Breville really should give me a kick back. I tell everyone to buy one;)

Q: What tips do you have for a working mom wanting to start their own business?

Figure out what is holding you back and get around it. For me, it was always money… not wanting to risk a bunch of money to start a business. And that is one of the things I love about Etsy – it allows me to have a pretty, well-organized shop for FREE, and only pay them a small fee when something sells. When the financial risk was taken out of the equation, I couldn’t wait to set up shop and see what I could do.

You’ll find Lissy’s adorable designs at www.shoplissy.com and on Facebook HERE. Lissy can also be reached by email at lissy@shoplissy.com. 

Until next time.

xo,
Kristie

Feb
21

Well, HELLO friends and HELLO Friday! If you missed us last week, we’re featuring some amazing women on the blog each Friday over the next 12 weeks. They’re sharing about their lives as moms, wives and business owners.

This is WEEK TWO.

Okay, time to meet Jordon…

Our kiddos went to the same preschool, but on different days. Her twin girls were there Tuesday’s and Thursday’s, while my twin boys were there Monday’s, Wednesday’s and Friday’s. We lived in the same neighborhood, but several streets away. Our paths never crossed. Then as luck would have it, Jordon bid on a photography session that I donated to our school’s auction and won! She was pregnant with her third kiddo. She was my new hero. We planned a family maternity session. I don’t think it even took me one second to adore them all. A friendship was born and weeks later, so was their sweet little guy! I photographed Henry’s newborn session and many of their family sessions since, now a family of six. They’ve been some of my all-time favorite sessions too! Jordon is an amazing friend, always makes me laugh… out loud and would give me the shirt off her back if I didn’t have one or her last beer. Not to mention, she’s crazy creative. Couldn’t imagine my life without my amazing friend! Her friendship is such a treasure!

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Yo! I’m Jordon, but my favorite people in the world (like Kristie) call me J Sizzle and I’ll answer to just about anything. According to my 2 yo, Frances Kate, I am a “Poo Poo Butt” for not giving her a lollipop before dinner last night. However, the day before she thought I was a “Not Not” so I think I am gaining a little ground in this crazy life. I’m a wife, a mother to 4 (at least 3 of them like me), and run a little childrens clothing company on the side. I have the best friends in the world who along with my family encourage me daily to keep it together. To say I would still be where I am today without them is “Poo Poo Butt” crazy. I’d be on a beach with a cold beer. Maybe a little bit lonely but whatev.

Q: What does a day in your life look like?

Chaos. I have no idea what I am doing. Today I woke up and shuffled the kids, with the help of my hubby Dan, of to school. Kissed Dan goodbye and hoped a flight to do a little fabric sourcing and spend some QT with my baby brother before his 3rd deployment. At the moment, I am sitting in the Charlotte airport with a basket of Fried Pickles and a cold beer (sorry Dan). On a more average day, I’d start the morning the same way but head over to our new Georgia Grace Warehouse & retail store. It’s been so wonderful having a dedicated GG warehouse but, admittedly, a bit overwhelming knowing that Georgia Grace has real bills to pay. Retail is a new venture for GG but it came with the space so as I tend to live life, I thought let’s give it a shot!

Q: Where did your inspiration for starting Georgia Grace come from?

Easiest question! From Georgia & Grace, my 8 year old twin girls. Okay, I’ll give a better answer, but only cause I love you. Before I had the girls I worked as a PA in Infectious Disease within the Critical Care Unit. I worked 36hr shifts at least once a week on top of regular hours. It was exhausting. Then I had twins so the joke was on me. The girls got a little older, things got a little easier, and I got a lot bored. I needed something to do so I pulled out the 1976 Singer sewing machine I stole from my mom, and well, here I am 8 years later.

Q: How do you stay balanced between being a mom and wife, owning your own business, staying involved at school and finding time for you? Any tips for those of us that struggle to do this?

I have absolutely no advice or tips on this subject. I don’t have a balance that I am happy with but, I do have a lot of friends and family who are very supportive and help pick up the slack. Sometimes things get left out and I don’t make it to every school function but the important things always get done. At the end of the day everyone is fed, homework is done, and all the kids are tucked into bed and there is always tomorrow to work on balance.

Q: What do you want your children to remember most about their childhood?

I want them to remember all of it. I want them to remember how their Dad and I wake up occasionally and say “ hey, there is nothing else to do today so let’s go to Disney. I want them to remember that sometimes we had a lot to do and we said “hey, let’s go to Disney anyway”. I want them to remember all of it and use every experience, good and bad, to become compassionate, open minded, happy, and adventurous people. I could care less if they decide to become professional dog walkers (I actually hear that can be quite a challenging and entertaining feat), circus performers, or the next President of the United States. I want my children to know they owe me nothing and I want to instill in them the importance of finding happiness no matter how they define happiness. It would be nice if they remembered that I make the best baklava in the world, I insist they make their bed, I knew that with Dan as their father they’d have great hair, and that I did my best to give them my sense of humor.

Q: If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, how far back would you go and what advice would it be?

WOW – that’s not an easy question! I’m honestly not sure! I don’t remember worrying about too much or have any tragic memories from when I was a kid. I guess I would just go back and pat myself on the top of the head and say “You’re going to be fine, but put on some sunscreen.”

Q: What inspires you?

Colors and patterns, and lots of them. I try not to be to stuck on what everyone else is doing with fashion. Sure, I have to keep current but sometimes I also have to believe in the things that only I might love so that I can try to design something that eveyone may love.

I adore looking at home décor, architecture digests & food magazines for inspiration, I could look at home blue prints all day long. I have a few full sized sets waiting to be framed and hung on my walls. They make me happy.

I love finding inspiration in the most unexpected things, it helps my creativity and it encourages me to see the beauty that anything and everything offers. Except spiders. I hate spiders.

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

This is an impossible question K Bizzle. Am I being set up? Is Dan secretly trying to plan my next birthday?

Yeah, that made me laugh too.

Kenya. I speak a little Swahilli so why not.

Q: Do you have a favorite go-to weeknight dinner?

I really like making meals on the weekends and freezing them. We just pull out the homemade frozen meal & pop it in the oven, it’s so easy! When I haven’t planned ahead, I will usually just stop by Publix and grab their featured Apron meal for the week and it’s almost always a hit.

Q: What tips do you have for a working mom wanting to start their own business? 

I get asked that a lot and the only really good answer I have is just do it! Of course, you actually have to know what you’re doing and not expect someone else to tell you how to do everything. If you’ve taken the time to learn what needs to be done it’s really not quite as hard as it seems.

You can find Georgia Grace on FACEBOOK and HERE ON THEIR WEBSITE.

You might recognize theses adorable faces below.

 

Until next time.

xo,
Kristie

Feb
14

Over the next 12 Fridays you’ll meet 12 AMAZING women. Okay, I might be partial, but trust me, they don’t get more awesome than these lovely ladies. They’re moms, small business owners and philanthropists. They’ll be sharing about their struggles, their businesses, what keeps them motivated, trying to find that balance and maybe a recipe or two.

As luck would have it, a month after we moved into our new home in Tampa, Jessica and her hubby moved in across the street. She was one of my very first photography clients and soon after, one of my dearest friends. We went together like peanut butter and jelly, like milk and cookies. We navigated our way through motherhood together. We’ve shared many laughs, cries, hopes and joys. I’ve watched her beautiful family grow. She’s watched me chase Quigley down the road. A month before our move to Washington, her family moved to Colorado. So while we don’t live across the street from one another anymore, our chats continue over the phone. Every time I hear voice, it’s like we’re right back on Chestnut Grove Drive together. I don’t know what I’d do without my dear, dear friend. Her friendship is such a blessing.

So, without further ado, Meet Jessica.

Q: Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Hi! How fun is this!! So, a little about myself….hmmm…..well since you asked….I am a wife to one adventure seeking, music loving, and non-natural enthusiast husband. Mother to three zany boys, Target shopper, Pilates junkie and lover of all things pure and natural. Early in my career I spent several years in the pharmaceutical world selling and educating doctors on prescription drugs. After a series of eye opening events and a serious change of heart, I steered another course and dove head first into the world of natural alternatives. Natural births, whole foods eating, and supporting other families in their journey is part of what drives my passion! I am so encouraged and hopeful of all the other folks out there that are looking beyond the scope of traditional medicines and into the healing powers of nature.

Q: What does a day in your life look like?

Oh, now this is interesting because I have never documented a day in my life so lets see-

6am- Alarm goes off
6:05am- Actually get out of bed, roll over the munchkin that slept beside me last night and get hit in the eye with a Monster Truck Show souvenir flag that he brought into bed.
6:15am- Go for a quick run on the treadmill.
7am-9:30am- Help my 6 year old make his “World Famous French Toast” and debate how it is not actually World Famous since this is the first time he has made it. It is actually delicious and we all enjoy a family breakfast.
9:30am- Tend to my husband who is under the weather with essential oils, tea and some love :)
10am- Play Monster Trucks and a game of Monopoly with a 2, 4 and 6 year old boy. Draining and exciting all at once.
12pm- Hit up Costco and Target. What was I thinking? Why would I ever do this on the weekend? Lesson learned.
4pm- doTerra consultation- meeting with a friend who started using essential oils for her family and discuss what to do!
6pm- Black bean and butternut squash burritos- sounds weird, tastes yummy and a success as 2 of my 3 kids took a bite.
7pm- Stories and bedtime. My first grader read a book to my younger boys- melt.my.heart.
8:30pm- Pick up the house, snuggle up with the hubs to watch a documentary called Sugar Man- amazing!
10:30pm- Check emails and prep Overnight Oatmeal in the rice cooker for breakfast.
11pm- Quick mediation before I fall fast asleep.

Q: Tell us about doTERRA.

In a nutshell, doTerra offers certified, pure, therapeutic grade essential oils. Sounds weird right? But essential oils have been used for their medicinal and therapeutic benefits for thousands of years throughout the world. For my family, we use them to help with ear infections, strep, the flu, colds, coughs, the croup, fever blisters, depression/anxiety, multiple sclerosis, cuts, bumps, bruises, you name it! So basically, through my company, Root Wellness, I teach folks how to become a healer in the their own home! Here is a little snip it of a video for all you visual learners :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xw1Ub7E76I4

Q: How has using essential oils impacted your life?

Oh good gravy, we used to LIVE at the pediatrician’s office during cold and flu season. My oldest would get recurring ear infections and while I knew the mounting evidence on the harm antibiotics could do I had no other choice but to give them to my little ones. Now, I treat them with other, more natural means and we haven’t been on an antibiotic in over there years!

Q: If you could go back in time and give yourself advice, how far back would you go and what advice would it be?

Interesting. Okay, so I would go back to myself in high school and say- have fun, enjoy this time and learn all that you can! I am somewhat of a perfectionist and wish, back then, I would have been open to doing things I wasn’t perfect at but loved. Kind of corny, but true.

Q: How do you stay inspired and motivated?

Researching and learning. If I am not learning and changing I am not evolving into a better person, wife, mother and friend.

Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?

Greece- on the list! But a close second is Seattle to see Kristie.

Q: Do you have a favorite go-to weeknight dinner?

Eeeekkk- I don’t. My husband complains that I never make the same thing twice and it is true. I don’t. So, if I haven’t planned ahead and need a go-to weeknight dinner we do take out!

Q: What tips do you have for a working mom wanting to start their own business?

Figure out the why’s behind your motivation for starting your own business. Is it more money, sharing something you love with others, flexible hours? And write THAT down. Because you will have to make sacrifices (less time with your children, no sleep, you name it!) and those will keep you motivated to keep that train moving!!

You can email Jessica at rootwellnessorg@gmail.com and visit her website at http://www.mydoterra.com/rootwellness/.

Feb
9

Just when I stopped believing the weather reports, it actually snowed! The only thing better than a snow day is two snow days! At this point though, we’ll take what we can get! What a fun day sledding with our friends, having snowball fights and drinking more hot cocoa then we should!

I’m totally guilty of taking personal photos and then letting them sit a year or two on my computer untouched. Poor photos, just sitting there waiting for someone, anyone to do something with them. If photos could cry, mine would! Well, today I decided to do something about it, so I’m sharing our fun.

Until next time.

xo,
Kristie