Welcome to my new blog!

ET_BaloonsDear Friends,

Happy Wednesday!! Okay so… I’m SO freaking excited to launch my new and improved blog to you today! Yippee! Bravo! Sha-zaam! (Is that a batman term?)

I’ve been thinking about this for a while. I was so inspired about the blog posts we were doing over the past few months and I felt like it was time to take this thing to the next level. Here’s my passion piece, my dream, my purpose with this whole blog thing: TO CREATE A COLLECTIVE. 

A collective where we all can come together to SHARE, CONNECT, and INSPIRE one another — share ideas, thoughts, tips, designs and more. You name it — let’s share it!

We are going to be courageous in our approach to content and we want to create a platform where you feel free to express yourself. It’s all about women coming together where authenticity, fearlessness and vulnerability reign supreme. We’ll continue our collaborative efforts with the blog and have our “guest gurus” speak about timely topics and we will also engage in a variety of ways to bring you juicy content like podcasts, video and exquisite writing to name a few.

Another cool idea we are embracing each month is build our content around a monthly theme. This gives us the opportunity to dive deep into what we are feeling passionate about and to flesh out a lot of thoughts and ideas with you. April’s theme is:

“Fresh starts and new beginnings: the art of creating space internally and externally which leads to clarity and a deeper sense of self.”

This topic is timely for a lot of reasons. April is a symbolic time. It’s a month of transformation and rebirth. I’m not sure about you, but I always feel like I wake up one day and suddenly SEE change. I see new life. The leaves start growing on the trees, the grass is green and the buds start to bloom again. At my house this also brings a fresh supply of Rhinocort and Allegra, but so be it, it’s a beautiful time. 

As the physical world around us starts to change, so does our internal world. For many of us, we start to feel urges to clean up, to change something — TO TRANSFORM. We might start tackling a much needed home project or clear out our closets to prepare for warmer weather. We also might reignite our health and wellness routines or feel an urge to dig deeper into our internal well- being, our faith and our self-awareness. Well, we are going to tackle some of these subjects with you this month and hopefully make you feel inspired and entertained. We will be creating juicy content and cannot wait for you to tell us your thoughts and analysis on our theme.

E-GrandadOK, so let’s get personal for a minute. This month’s theme hits home with me in a huge way. I’ve been experiencing personal transformation over the last several months. It’s been exhausting to say the least, but I know it was ALL destined. It’s been challenging and it’s required me to do the hard work. To take a look inside, seek the answers and find the truth. It was time.

I’ve had a reality filled with many endings and many new beginnings of late. With endings there’s always a new beginning, a new window to peer from, a chance at a fresh perspective and a new awakening. For starters: my beloved grandfather died in January after 99 years on this earth, my beautiful, sweet Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Bailey, passed away in March of cancer (link to his picture), my mother was recently diagnosed with a recurrence of breast cancer and it caught us all off guard.

Business-wise, over the past couple of months we’ve proactively chosen to close some stores due to budgetary reasons and just plain good business practices. We’ve streamlined our company and been forced to say goodbye to valuable team members, which sucks and is hard.

heather2And most significantly, I’ve also had to say goodbye to my dearest confidant and partner over the past 13 years — Heather Conerly. She was our EVP and my most trusted advisor. I could go on and on about my love and devotion to her, but it would take too long. Heather has been there for me through it all. Through every store opening, every store closing, every product launch, every new employee, every celebration and every disappointment.

Heather, you will never know how grateful Jim and I are to you. And, how much we appreciated and valued your loyalty, consistency, stability and GRIT. You taught me a lot about myself over the past decade and most importantly you showed me what true loyalty and devotion look like. Thank you. 

For those of you who don’t know, Heather decided to take a step back from her career to have her beautiful baby girl, Charley. This decision was hard to accept in so many ways, but I also completely understand and relate to her dilemma. We will miss you Heather. You are one of a kind. I love you dearly.

AND … on a much lighter note, DOWNTON FREAKIN’ ABBEY is OVER!? What? Are the Gods against me? I feel empty, lost, confused. How can I not indulge in my weekly viewing of Lady Mary’s ice cold one-liners, and the Dowager’s snarky quips and Lady Edith’s desperate attempts for happiness! Ugh. Oh well, I guess I’ll have to look anew for that next viewing addiction. PBS, don’t do me wrong. Make it happen. 😉

So…you might ask…why is she telling me all this? Well, I think it’s helpful to get REAL about life and the unpredictability of it. And quite frankly, I want to be vulnerable with you. I hope this builds a trust between us.

We cannot always control what happens to us but we can control our reaction to it, and this month we are exploring the idea of self-examination, daily disciplines and creating that space to not only survive but thrive in your life. The one thing I know for sure is SH*T will happen and life will most certainly go on. (I know… (Oprah says it much more prophetically J )

FullSizeRenderBUT, you get my drift. All we can do is embrace the uncertainty of life. And embrace ourselves and our ability to get through whatever life may bring. It takes courage, discipline and strength to create happiness and fulfillment in your life. Simply put, it’s an inside job. But, if we can join together to make the journey a little less painful then somehow it might not feel so burdensome. May we find strength in each other, may we find faith in the journey, and ultimately, may we find love and compassion along the way.

So let’s get this party started! I cannot wait to go on this journey with you.

Elaine

One thought on “Welcome to my new blog!

  1. Hi Elaine, I am very sorry to hear about Bud’s passing and about your mom’s recurrence of breast cancer. I knew them many years ago. My grandmother, Betty Lyons, was best friends with your grandmother and we all knew them as Aunt Nita and Uncle Bud. She and I attended your parents’ wedding and stayed with your grandparents while there. Your grandparents attended my wedding 12 years later. Lots of wonderful family memories from those days. Please pass along my best wishes to your Mom in facing this new challenge.

    All the best,

    Linda (Moore) Montague

    Like

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