There is something about supporting a local business that warms my heart. For me it meant shopping local with Swagger Boutique in Raleigh, NC. When I find out that a business is owned by a woman that makes it just as wonderful. To me that means it is a woman with a dream like myself.
I like the idea of being your own boss and always striving to do more with your dream. Mandy Krettus Becker is doing that very thing with her awesome boutique called Swagger. This is her second location with the first one located in Cary, NC.
Social media allows you to connect with some amazing people. It was through that platform that I found out about her MoMosa event recently. It was right before Mother’s Day and Skin Raleigh was there to give away a Cellfina treatment to one lucky winner.
Lauren Raines of Salon Blu at Falls Village was braiding hair for any customer that wanted a great summer look. Victoria Renfroe was glamming it up by giving women an eye makeover. She also included lashes to complete the look.
Years ago, before kids; I was on a getaway weekend with my husband in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. I was passing by Be Pure Beauty in Chapel Hill, NC recently. Sundays are made for self-care days with Be Pure Beauty.
Imagine my surprise when I was walking by and I saw some beautiful kimono robes through the window. I love shopping where I get to know the owners and can develop connections with them. That is what I enjoy about April and her lovely store.
I knew immediately that I wanted to buy a kimono. The hardest thing was deciding which color to get. They were all gorgeous. What better way to treat yourself.
There is something about slipping into something silky that makes a person feel sexy. What I love is that it really brought my cherished memory back to life. I don’t believe in coincidence. It was meant for me to have it.
I initially went in to find a facial sunscreen. I have discoloration from Melasma and with the summer days approaching I knew I should buy some. What I like about Be Pure Beauty products is that they are good for you.
Reinventing myself through the eyes of a lens was a great feeling. You see before launching my blog I didn’t feel comfortable taking photos. I’m not ashamed to say that because it is part of my story. It is what is unique to me as an individual. If you want the story behind that see the link at the end of this post.
Here is what happens when you are a creative. You start thinking of your vision. You imagine what you want to create and then how you will create it.
On this journey, you must be willing to do things outside of the norm. For me it was getting all dressed up with a beautiful dress.
Along the way you find people who will see that vision and then make it a reality. That is what I did when I sought out to find my photographer for my first-year blog anniversary. I knew that this photo shoot would have to be as incredible as my first one.
I was looking to have fun and simply be comfortable in my own skin. Trusting someone else to do my makeup is something that I have been working on. Letting go and not being in control is a big deal.
I have found that I must trust the process and do it anyway. The great thing about doing it is that I get to see how others see me.
What I found most fun was deciding what to wear. I have always been a big fan of vintage clothing. This was an opportunity to indulge in it. Over the summer I was introduced to Canela Vintage based out of San Antonio, Texas.
In this weeks Ask Lucy segment the question comes from Amy.
“What would you say to a young mother in making the decision between staying at home with her child or pursuing her ambitions? On one hand, I feel as though they are only young once and this is a once in a lifetime chance to capture the moment. On the other hand, this is such a short time that goes by so quickly; but perhaps teaching them how to pursue their own dreams is a reward in itself?”
Oh I love this question! It is so easy to be torn with this. Our boys are older now. High school and college so it does make me reflect on my own experiences.
I would tell you to go for it! Children are only young once and this is true. It’s a fact, but going after your dream is equally important. It doesn’t make you a bad mother for pursuing what you love.
I have often reflected on what it would have been like to pursue my passion as a writer years ago. I mean fully followed my gut without fear. I don’t regret the days of my work experiences or the times I was a stay home mom.
I’m talking about whether you are single, in a relationship or if you are married. Sometimes these special occasions can make you feel sad versus happy. If you are in a loving relationship this does not apply to you.
Instead of wallowing in self-pity try loving yourself first. Yes, you heard me right I’m talking about you first. In order to be happier with any holiday that comes along its important to feel good about you.
When you are content with who you are in the present moment it allows you to look forward to holidays all the more. It’s not about the expectations that you have about the other person. Neither is it keeping score on what a person has done for you in the past.
My recent trip to Dallas, Texas took me to the Next conference in Plano, Texas. I have wanted to see Terri Savelle Foy in person because she has been very inspirational to me with her podcasts and television broadcast this past year. You can find her at: http://www.terri.com.
I decided to stay where the conference was being held and that was at the Hilton in Granite Park in Plano, Texas. My stay was made even better with all of the wonderful staff there. I don’t think I ran into one single unhappy person during my time there. http://bit.ly/2jDaM1P
When I arrived at the Hilton I was able to use their valet service. When you are anxious to get settled into your room valet parking is a blessing. One of the amenities that I was more than willing to use. It saved me time in looking for a parking space.
What I liked about staying at the Hilton was that I didn’t need to venture far at all. Had I stayed longer I would have gone to the nearby IKEA store too. http://bit.ly/2knqeMy
What kind of amenities are a must have for you when you travel?
I always look for a place that has a nice restaurant on site and that offers lattes whenever possible. I am most definitely a coffee girl. It doesn’t matter if it is morning, noon or night. I mean doesn’t everybody need coffee?
This Hilton had a nice outdoor pool with a hot tub and a really nice fire pit outside that had seating all around it. It made it nice to be able to sit at different areas and everyone would get their time around the fire.
There were plenty of areas inside to work at and a bar to eat or have cocktails at. There was also access to a 24 hour fitness center. On my second morning there I made it to the gym by 5:00 am and was the only one there.
Ever read up on ways that you can enhance yourself?
Pick up any magazine and there will always be articles on things that can make you look better. Whether it is a hot new hair color, a sexy outfit or the latest beauty fad. Recently I was catching up on social media and noticed a picture of getting New Years Eve ready by getting a spray tan.
As a teen I grew up when tanning salons and laying outside in the sun were all the rage. I grew into becoming a woman and that all changed. Taking care of your skin became a priority.
The official launch of lulalucy.com! I’ve been a writer for many years and my journey started in Ohio writing for our local newspaper. You see I was part of a community of freelance writers and literally wrote for free for a few years. What I have truly loved is that writing from the heart has always been my main focus. The rest of the opportunities have come full circle because of it. I look back to the early years and realize that I have been blessed in so many ways. It started as a community project and I ended up landing a writing gig with my own column.
When you get the opportunity to meet up with other bloggers for a night at Be Pure Beauty in Durham, NC and the founder April Manring is the hostess you get your questions answered. Not only answered but creatively I might add.