Breathe, Refresh, Reset

I am back from Africa, with a huge, thankful heart.

Sam in Portofino, Italy

In August, when we (my husband John and I) got the word that we were accepted to ministry school in Africa, I knew what I had to do.  For months, I had been holding off on scheduling any weddings for the fall and winter, praying, and trying to wait as patiently as possible for the word on whether or not we would be going.  Weeks went by, and our fall was still unsure.  Our future was still unsure.

The best things in life are worth waiting for, and sacrificing for.

Art, of any kind, is best fueled and inspired when life is had.  When adventures are had.  When we aren't so focused on what we are creating, or even that we are creating, as much as we are willing to just enjoy life, the small things, the simple moments.  These fuel our tanks, and out of this fullness, we create with authenticity, with power, and most of all, with inspiration.  Art without inspiration is just clanging noise.

John in Gordes

So when we got the word to go, I did what I knew I had to do, and what I had prepared to do.  I blacked-out my fall and winter business schedule for any weddings, said "no" more than I ever have, announced our coming adventure, set up my Vacation Settings email with a list of references, and held my business with open hands.  All of it.  It was nerve-wracking, exhilarating, frustrating, strangely relieving, did not make any sense (to my natural mind, and in the world of weddings), and made a lot of sense (to my heart).  When God tells you to do something, you don't have to understand how it will all work out. And when God gives you more than one passion, He alone is going to take care of how these passions come to fruition.

When nothing is sure

So, after packing up our little home and traveling through Europe and Africa for three months,

after very little access to all things wedding blogs, Instagram, Pinterest, emails, and the wedding world,

after three months of not worrying over what my hair, skin, nails, or makeup looked like, or what the latest aesthetic/small business/wedding vendor/styling trends were,

after meeting beautiful people from all over the world,

after doing hair and makeup for an entire bridal party in Mozambique, with barely any makeup or hair supplies, and seeing the pure joy on the bride's face as she looked in the mirror,

I come home purely refreshed, rejuvenated, and re-inspired.  I came home with a fresh vision of what my little hair and makeup business is all about.

Beautiful Things in Humble Places

Sam in Nelspruit, South Africa

LULA is about acknowledging and honoring the beauty in yourself, in others, in the big moments and the little moments in life.  We do not need as much as we think we do.  And so it is with beauty.  True beauty is not about the brand of makeup, the right hair, the best clothes, or the most perfectly curated instagrams.  It's about loving what you see when you look in the mirror, enjoying others, and enjoying real life.  Beauty is simple - it's you.  I want each and every lovely lady who sits in my chair to not just like what they see, but to feel as beautiful as they truly are.

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Much to my surprise, and to my delight, God gave me new vision and business plans for LULA, and I can't wait to make these changes in the coming months. Things are going to be more streamlined, more simple, more beautiful, more clear, and LULA is going to be more of what I dreamed her to be.

This Life is Pretty Amazing

So, here's to you!  Happy 2015!New Year

Stay tuned for a post I am very excited to share - my feature in Southern Weddings Magazine - V7!

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(If you emailed during my time away, I will be responding shortly!  Thank you so much for your patience, and I am looking forward to talking with you!)