Ok, so you got the backstory of my year in Part 1, so I thought I'd keep this part casual and share a few fun roundups!
- Unashamed - Christine Caine
- Grace Not Perfection - Emily Ley
- Where There is Love, There is God - Mother Theresa
- Hinds Feet on High Places - Hannah Hurnard
- Celebration of Discipline - Richard Foster
- The Magician's Nephew - C.S. Lewis
- Present Over Perfect - Shauna Niequist
- John Muir's Wilderness Essays
- Every Bitter Thing is Sweet - Sara Hagerty
- The Life-Giving Home - Sally Clarkson
- Animal, Vegetable, Miracle - Barbara Kingsolver
- The Hormone Reset Diet - Dr. Sara Gottfried
- Grove Park Inn for Nancy's Birthday/Minki Escape 2017!
- Virginia Beach for a church conference
- Winston Salem to visit family
- The Highlands for a wedding with Jo assisting
- Beaufort (six times!) - work, family, fun trips, and Jess' wedding
- DC, Maryland (The Brampton Inn), Williamsburg (our 5 year anni!) including Busch Gardens!
- Lake Gaston for Ray Family Vacay
- Seven Springs, NC to see where some of my family heritage is from
- Nashville for my 30th Birthday
- Boone/Blowing Rock for an autumn getaway
Weddings Worked: 25!
Bridal, Maternity, & Engagement Sessions: 16
Corporate Photoshoots: 8
- Haerfest Bags, Simplified Planner, Powersheets, Gilded Bridal, A Simplified Life, Prollineum US, and a few more!
Bridal HAMU Trials: 18
Lulette Gazettes Sent: 9
2017 Trends I Loved:
- Bright lips, Wavy/messy hair, all-natural/non-toxic beauty products
Most Loved Beauty Products:
- Garnier Micellar Water - swapped this for my face wash and I'm absolutely loving it. It's gentle on my skin but does a thorough job cleansing, and doesn't leave me dried out
- Beauty Counter No.3 Balancing + Ylang Ylang Facial Oil - total game changer for my acne-prone skin
- Jane Iredale Just Kissed Lip + Cheek Stain in Forever Peach - a beautiful, soft, perfect peach hue with a hydrating balm feel - I used this all the time this summer
- Red Apple Lipstick in Audrey - the perfect everyday pink, free of toxins, parabens, and it's vegan!
- Beauty Counter Ultimate Nudes Eyeshadow Pallete - THE BEST palette that I'm loving personally & professionally
- Lush It's Raining Men Shower Gel and Lush Buffy Body Butter - I've been experimenting with body cleansers that won't strip away moisture and these totally won me over. They both smell amazing - use the shower gel first, and then buff away with the body butter and be prepared for supple, moisturized skin!
Most Visited Local Date Locations:
- Boulted Bread - for the best pastries and a cup of coffee in a cool neighborhood
- Brewery Bhavana - for the yummiest dim sum in a hip atmosphere, with locally brewed beer
- Raleigh Raw - for when we wanted to be super healthy, we highly recommend the Complete Breakfast (a CBJ smoothie and Crack Coffee)
- Foundation - for the best drinks in Raleigh
Top Lessons Learned
- Stay true to yourself. No one else's life or business should be your goal or standard.
- Share your story. The road you've walked is unique, and God is doing something in it. Opening up in vulnerability can be one of the most powerful tools in your healing and connecting genuinely with others!
- LAUGH - laugh in the face of anxiety, failure, and fear. Laugh through it. It is healing!
- Busyness does not equal success
- Friendships are worth investing in and saying yes to!
- You are worth respecting - your health, what you feed yourself, who you spend time with, and the activities you do.
I can't wait to see what 2018 has in store for us!
What has your year been like? What are you looking forward to in the new year?
Here's to a great 2017! Thank you for all of your love & support!