Grateful Goodbyes

Hello! Life has been a whirlwind these past few months...lots of packing, unpacking and getting settled into a familiar but temporary home while planning for our new home. As many of you can probably relate from your own experiences, moving is exciting and daunting all at the same time.

We've now become accustomed to the different daily surroundings and routines, but I often find myself thinking back on the many memories we shared in our previous home. A house that we intended to live in for only a few years turned out to be our home for eleven years. It holds once-in-a-lifetime moments that we'll cherish forever.

It was our home when we got married, welcomed our Goldendoodle and became parents. It was a place that allowed us to bring family and friends together, celebrating, playing games, eating good food and just enjoying each other's company. It was a place we shared the simple joys of life and worked through some challenges. Like most homes, it had its nuisances, but we learned to look past them or accept them. In fact, those nuisances are now a big part of what made that space home. No matter what, it was a place we were always happy to return to.

We are grateful for the time we had in our home but also grateful to be moving on.

What do you remember about your previous home(s)? I hope you choose to preserve those good times and little quirks that made the experience that much more memorable.

Until next time...enjoy making memories!

A Sneak Peek

Hello! I’ve been busy experimenting with new software and creating :-) My two new best friends are Pixellu SmartAlbums 2 and Adobe Lightroom. I cannot wait to dive deeper into these programs! They’ve already improved my storybook process immensely, and I’ve only scratched the surface of their robust features. I’ll be sure to share further details as I become more familiar with them.

Even more exciting for me is the fact that I’m working not only on client projects but also personal projects. I, too, am guilty of neglecting my photos and therefore, created a list of storybooks to complete in 2016. One at the top of the list is my daughter’s first year (yes, she’s now two). I've organized my photos by month/events and am 51 spreads in! Being at month four, I have a long way to go. It's been so much fun seeing it all come together, though. Here’s a sneak peek of a few of the spreads that have been started. Keep in mind that text has yet to be added, photos will be edited, etc. I’m still in the beginning stages of designing but am making good progress!

Stay tuned to learn about the details of my storybook process.

Until next time…enjoy making memories!

The Simple Truths Told By Photos

We recently celebrated my daughter’s second birthday. Because I’m in love with photos, I once again incorporated them into the party décor. I can't resist :-) Below is a photo collage from last year’s party (1 in a flash) and this year’s party (horse themed – memory trail).

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While comparing the two, I came to the realization that photos can teach us a lot about life. I’ll leave you with a few simple truths that were brought to mind:


Change may not be obvious in the moment, but its subtle occurrences sure do make a big impact over time.
 
It’s the little things in life that bring the most joy.
 
A smile makes a difference.

Time truly is precious and should be intentionally filled with meaningful experiences.

We're never too young or too old to try something new.

Courage often leads to more fulfillment than we could have ever imagined.

We’re capable of making significant strides in short periods of time. We just have to possess the right mindset, seek out the positive in all circumstances and stay determined.


Now I turn it over to you. What simple truths are your photos telling?

Until next time...enjoy making memories!

Word of the Year

Happy New Year! After spending several weeks of quality time with family, I’m reenergized and ready to make things happen in 2016 :-) Thus my word of the year: FOCUS. 

At first this word didn’t resonate with me. It felt a bit cold (my past words have been more lighthearted: courage, believe, trust, transformation). Then I realized, however, if I’m going to accomplish everything that’s already in store for me this year, my focus needs to be kicked up a notch or two. It’s not every year I sell a home, build a new home and get a business off the ground. In order to maintain a desired work/life rhythm during these pivotal moments, focus is going to be essential. In fact, I’m certain it’s going to be a constant that carries me through. It’s going to be my sidekick, cheering me on and steering me in the right direction…the direction of my priorities: nourishing personal relationships (even when life gets chaotic), being original, creating consistently, collaborating with like-minded individuals and simplifying all areas of my life.       


Faith, family and friends

Originality

Creating

Unity

Simplifying


My motivation for completion will be, “Focus on progression, not perfection.

I’ll also rely on my five L’s:

Learning to say “no”

Letting go of things that no longer serve me

Leaning into the unknown

Listening to my heart

Leaping with faith

I know I have a lot on my plate for 2016, but I truly believe it’ll all be possible with intentional focus every day. The hardest part for me is going to be limiting the amount of learning materials (i.e. classes, podcasts, blogs, books) I consume. To keep my love of learning from backfiring on me, I’m going to first concentrate on managing my time and streamlining my processes. Essentialism, Getting Things Done and The ONE Thing are at the top of my reading list, and I’m currently in the middle of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. With a few shifts and a lot of FOCUS, I’ll be on the road to success. Thanks for believing in me and supporting me on my journey :-)

Blessings in abundance to you in 2016! I hope it’s your best year yet. 

Until next time…enjoy making memories!

Life Reminders From the Hallmark Channel

I typically don’t watch a lot of TV, but my screen time increases during this time of year due to the Hallmark Channel’s Christmas movies. They lure me in every time. They add that extra touch of holiday spirit within our home and deliver messages that leave a lasting impression. The movies put emphasis on the value of family, traditions and dreams. They give hope and extend joy. The fact that I can always count on a happy ending is my favorite part :-)
 
As you celebrate this holiday season with family and friends and plan for the New Year, I encourage you to keep in mind these few, of many, life reminders shared in the Hallmark Channel’s Christmas movies. They’re simple yet profound, inviting us to take a step back from the daily grind in order to become present with ourselves and our surroundings. They’ve motivated me to reflect on my values and reevaluate my priorities accordingly. I hope they offer something special to you as well.

Spend time with those who make you feel like the person you want to be.
~Christmas Incorporated

Be grateful for the little things in life.
~The Ultimate Life

All of us make our own mistakes in our own ways. The solution is the same..."I forgive you."
~A Season for Miracles

The best decorations have stories behind them.
~The Christmas Note

Life is rich because of the people in it.
~Window Wonderland

Show joy and joy will show itself to you.
~Debbie Macomber's Dashing Through the Snow

Things can change in a blink of an eye, so when you find passion for a person or a life that you always dreamed of, you just can't back up. Don't give up on something so rare.
~Karen Kingsbury's The Bridge

Trust your instincts. That's really the best way to make the right choice.
~Family for Christmas

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Wishing you a magical holiday season!

Until next time...enjoy making memories!