365 New Days 365 New Chances

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How powerful is this quote? “365 new days, 365 new chances.”

We are only a couple of days away from having 365 days to make a fresh start!

Every year right after Christmas, when I start contemplating taking down the Christmas decorations (no, I haven’t done that yet), I can’t believe another year has come and gone.  I think to myself, “where did the time go and what did I do with it??”  But then when you take time and reflect on a past year, you will be amazed at what all happened – the good, the bad, the ugly, the inspiring, and the in between!!

Here is a quick look back at my 2015 and some my most favorite and memorable moments…

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  • Being featured in Jezebel Magazine, twice! Once for being one of the 5 Makeup Artists To Know Now, and another time when I was featured in their Glam Patrol feature. Blog post on that HERE.  I am humbled that a local Atlanta publication would be kind enough to recognize me for my love of everything beauty and makeup artistry.  I never would have imagined when graduating from UGA with a Fashion Merchandising degree, that one day I would switch gears and own my own makeup business and create and edit an online blog/business!
  • Contributing to Closer Magazine which is a national publication (sold in Target too!!) and seeing my name in 4 issues giving my beauty advice for the over 40 crowd.  Really surreal to be shopping in my favorite store and picking up a print magazine with my name in black and white.  Blog post HERE with articles of the advice I gave attached.

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  • Took a couple of trips to further my knowledge in blogging and makeup artistry. The first one was attending The Makeup Show which was held in NYC. It was my first time going and it was a whirlwind!  More on my experience HERE and part two HERE, and yes, I got to meet Kat Von D who has her own beauty line which I’m obssessed with.  She was incredibly nice and patient with all of us clamoring to meet her.  Great lesson on taking time with people because a few minutes can make a big impact.
  • The second trip was into Charleston, SC for the Southern Blog Society Conference.  This was right after the horrible shootings that occurred there. We arrived on the day that the President was in town, so it was crazy but I was encouraged by the city and how friendly and upbeat everyone was.  I roomed with my fashion blogger friend Lauren LeFevre, and this trip solidified a great friendship with a woman/mom who has inspired me in so many ways and has supported me with great blog advice.  More photos from what we did on that trip HERE.  Lauren and I ended up going on another trip together later on in the year, which she encouraged me to do…

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  • Lauren told me I NEEDED to attend New York Fashion Week in NYC with her and 2 other bloggers…and I said YES!!  It was such a cool adventure, one I had always wanted to do but didn’t think I deserved to attend.  So glad I did it and again, made 2 other great friendships in my blogger babes Jessica and Tara who I roomed with.  These women truly inspired me in the short time we were together and even though we are now all back home, we continue group texts that will probably never die!!  I also got to see my first real runway show and was in the mix with so many exciting fashion happenings and seeing SO many famous faces in the beauty and fashion industry. This year is going to be the year of YES for a lot  more of traveling and doing things out of my comfort zone too! And hopefully seeing more of my blogger mamas Lauren, Tara, and Jessica!

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  • We went on a two vacations with the kids.  One during their Spring Break where we took a road trip from Georgia all the way to Chicago, through St. Louis, Nashville, then back to Georgia. It was a blast and I never thought we could have so much fun in a car for that many hours!  But the kids were pumped with hotel life the entire trip up to Chicago.  Blog post on our adventures HERE.
  • We also did our annual beach trip with the grandparents to Kiawah Island, SC.  If you’ve never been, you should go.  It’s beautiful and so relaxing.

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  • I lost count of how many makeup jobs I had this year.  2015 was busier than ever and I loved every client that trusted me with their faces, whether it was for a big wedding day, special event, or private teaching session.  I am learning more and more with every face I touch and the looks I create.  My job never gets old because no two faces are the same.  The thing I love about blogging + makeup artistry is that they both compliment the other.  I can pass on my knowledge of the hottest new beauty products to my clients and also use them to benefit the faces I work with as new makeup techniques and products come onto the market.

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  • Jack, Walker, and Vivian are growing closer every day and are at such cute ages right now. I think I say that every year though!! Jack is the ultimate patient, smart, and caring oldest sibling.  Walker is our wild card and so full of life (I think the above pic shows that!).  And little Vivian is the ultimate girly girl and is destined to have a love for the art of makeup like me, but can totally hang with her bros.  My hope is that they will always be supportive and close with one another.
  • Scott has started helping me out more with the social media side of my blog and with encouraging me to do more videos and YouTube.  Slowly but surely I am coming around to the idea that I find so intimidating.  It’s only taken him like 3 years to convince me!! We started a podcast together this year too, Making It Up As We Grow, but have taken a little hiatus on it as life got a little crazy and we started a few other projects, so it was hard to keep it up consistently.  But we aren’t going to let it die, we will be back with new episodes.  Putting this one our to do list! You can follow his video skills here on JaWaViFilms.

Of course now that 2015 will be over very soon, I have starting making little notes here and there (in my mind!) about what I’d like to personally get out of the next 365 days.

I am trying to not get freaked out by how quickly everyone around me is growing up so fast, (my oldest will turn 10 this year and Scott is turning the big 4-0) and trying to appreciate what we have accomplished so far in life.  A new year brings us the chance to reflect on how our lives will look into the future.

“If you are not obsessed with your life, change it.”

I am already working towards daily changes to prioritize a healthier, more productive, and overall happier me. Hubby got me a gym membership for Christmas so that’s a good start!!  If you are around my age, you know things and life tend to be stressful and so it is important to put my physical and mental wellbeing at the top of my list of things to take care of.  A sluggish mom makes for an irritable mom.  I also tend to focus on the fact I don’t think I’m doing enough to keep this family afloat which is not good for my anxiety level. I’m sure most of you moms are giving me a virtual head nod right now.

As a mom of three, wife, small business owner, and running a blog (that has turned into a real side business), it’s sometimes hard to make the right choices for your health when so much of your day first revolves around your family.  Hello McDonalds and ChickFilA for lunch and dinner and that one too many glasses of wine to wind down the day.  I have been able to get away with not enough  sleep and eating whatever but I know these choices are slowly backfiring on me.  That unhealthy muffin top is creeping up and I am resolved to not let it keep growing!

I want to make choices that affect my mood positively – whether that be saying YES to scary projects or opportunities or having the courage to say NO to things, people, or projects I know I my heart won’t be into or benefit me.  And I’m going to start saying yes to more fruits and veggies and no to fries and extra mayonnaise.

Most of all I want to be a good example to my kids of how to take charge of their own happiness and success in school, academics, and life, which does NOT revolve around comparing yourself to others and their successes. We all know is a slippery slope in this day and age of social media and seeing what EVERYONE is doing and winning at.  Because very few people post about their failures, but they all have them, me included.  On the flip side, those failures are learning examples of what doesn’t work in life, business, and relationships, so don’t repeat them.

I am excited about the new days and chances ahead, all 365 of them.  Happy early New Year to you all – I appreciate every single one of you for reading and following along with me this year!! XOXO, Jennifer