Don’t- Not-Invite- Your Busy CEOs in the Making or Pregnant Friends!

I feel like this is a “never fails” moment in your life, especially when you become pregnant. All of a sudden you go from being a first call to a “oh she’s pregnant, they won’t want to come” thought in someone’s mind. It’s semi understandable. No, you wont be able to be the life of the party you may have been before. No, you probably won’t stay out past midnight as often or at all. No, you can’t take shots with the squad. No, you won’t look as cute with your bump in the “girls night out” photo-op. BUT, you know what you can do? You can still dance, have a great time, drink mock-tini’s and DRIVE your drunken gal pals home! These are still key and important qualities! So if you are the un-invited, keep your head up babe we know you are totally still down to party!

For the un-inviting- as a current pregnant friend of yours that you have officially not invited to gatherings, nights out, wine Wednesday or whatever it may be- this sucks. It sucks to be a so called friend who isn’t thought of anymore! I know in your mind you are saving the phone call for when I ultimately pop the baby out and can have a good time again, in your mind you do not think I have any desire to come, in your mind I may have already said no a few times so you don’t want to waste your time. But the thought of not being thought of, sucks. It seems in this moment that if you haven’t thought of me (or your pregnant friends) that I simply was not a true friend to begin with… It doesn’t hurt to ask the question, throw the invite out there even if you know that we can’t make the party!

I’ve actually been wanting to write about this for quite some time now, way before pregnancy. It doesn’t always boil down to just pregnancy and friendships. This is ultimately all friendships!

Say it with me now- SHE IS GOING AFTER HER GOALS AND SHOULD NOT BE PUNISHED

I have many friends that cannot make a lot of events/ day drinking trips/ dinners or whatever! I have many friends who I KNOW for a FACT will work every Friday and Saturday night and can’t make whatever I wanted to invite them to. But the difference is, I invite them anyway. I know it will be a “I can’t come,” but I want them to know that I thought of them enough and thought of our friendship to at least let them know I WISHED they could come!

My point is- In the second case, you have friends who have goals. Friends who have careers and paths ahead of them that may make it difficult for them to appear at a cocktail hour or birthday dinner, but this is not something that they should be punished for! If you believe that they are still a decent friend, decent enough for your love and friendship, you should still extend the invite. Sometimes we can get discouraged as humans, by constantly being told “no I can’t make it,” so we stop reaching out. In some cases, I get it. But in the case that the friend in question is striving to make a good life and go after their goals or dreams, INVITE THEM ANYWAY. You have no idea what the simple gesture can mean. It truthfully can be the difference in a lifelong friendship and one that fades out! Not to mention, who doesn’t want to remain the friend of a future CEO 😉

Travel Packing Necessities

Packing. The seven letter word, one action that everyone seems to hate am I right? Some don’t mind packing but hate un-packing. I totally get it, its tedious and sometimes gruesome! I’ve learned a few tricks and tips that make my packing life a lot easier when preparing for a trip so I figured I’d share with you!

I’m one that defiantly overpacks, but not by much. Just enough to put my mind at ease that I have options and am not stuck if something comes up on a trip that I’m not prepared for. To start any trip I start with my luggage, do I need the big or little suitcase? Ha. Seems like a silly question but when I start out with this question, I don’t pack more than can fit in the suitcase. Weekend trip? Little suitcase. 4 days or more? Big suitcase for sure!

Mine are similar to these, which are under $100!

Once my suitcase is chosen, I make sure that all of our laundry is clean so that I have a full closet of options. I choose an outfit for each occasion that I know we will be at, then I pick some comfy clothes options and some extra cute options in case something pops up!

Make a list: Make a physical list that you can check off as you are placing the items in your suitcase, this way you don’t forget anything.

Next step, fitting in and packing my toiletries, makeup, jewelry, hair products and styling tools! These take up a good bit of space for me usually and I used to be so concerned with how things were packed. Will my shampoo explode in my suitcase and ruin my clothes? Will my necklaces get tangled into a mess I cannot undo? Will my mouth wash leak and have my clothes smelling like spearmint for the entire trip? So many possibilities. Then I found Ellis James Designs and these worries honestly became less of a worry.

I pack my jewelry, toiletries and makeup all separately and organized using their specialized bags! They are all handy as well as super cute. See my personal photos below of them in use, click the links under the photo to find the product on AMAZON and on sale.

Flying is Different: If flying, I always like to keep one outfit and my makeup on my person just in case of a mishap with my luggage! I’ve been stranded before, and though the air carrier will usually give you an allowance to replace items or purchase something to get you by I don’t want to waste time on a trip to do this. I also make sure I have my charger with me in my purse or carry on, just in case regardless of how long my battery usually lasts!

Though life looks a little differently this year, we are still taking small trips and looking forward to the adventures ahead, I hope that you are too!

I F**king Love The Woman I’m Becoming.

Sorry but really I’m not. Seriously, it hypes me up! She knows her worth. She has values. She’s motivated and ready to make it all happen.

I haven’t always felt this way, this has taken years and a lot of difficult changes to accomplish. I haven’t always known where I wanted to be in life, who I wanted to be or even what I wanted to do. These are questions that everyone is asked, multiple times as a teenager graduating high school then throughout adulthood. Over and over, at family gatherings, friend’s milestone events and the random conversation with the bartender in the airport. These questions are asked. (It’s rather annoying to be honest) You’d think a girl could figure it out pretty quickly, and if you did Bravo! But you didn’t so quickly or maybe still don’t know the answers to these questions, don’t stress.

I say this not because I don’t wish for you to find yourself, but because stress does not help anyone to find the answers to life. Take it from someone who went through 4 different majors in college, a different job nearly every year after, and a million dreams on the horizon of every turn. A friend once told me, “Never be afraid to make a right turn,” and it stuck. The road doesn’t always have to run straight in order to get you to your destination, and it almost never does. Truthfully I still have a lot of dreams ahead of me, however the difference now is that I am fully motivated and charging towards them head on!

I am a promotional manager working a 9-5 job that I like and appreciate, part time photographer fitting in every afternoon and weekend shoot that I can, and online boutique owner creating orders and shipping them out in the evenings. Yup, three commitments, three time consuming work obligations, three OPPORTUNITIES to get me where I want to be! I strive to be a full time photographer and boutique owner, and one day that goal WILL be a reality.

I challenge you to find your nitch, figure out where you want to be in your career. I challenge you to go after your dreams, even if they are difficult. I challenge you to suck it up when things are hard, the work seems endless and the goal seems too far out of reach because sis, that is what I am doing every day. There is a bit more pride in my step and heart in my voice that I didn’t have before though, because I am doing the damn thing. One way or another, with or without help. I do, however, offer you my help. I offer you a friend to call on for advice, to rant to, give that bit of hard love and motivation.

Why do I want to help? What if you too, want a boutique? What could I possibly do for you?

Support. I could support you either way no matter what because LADIES, we do not support one another nearly enough or like we should. Women are terrible to one another and most of it comes from envy. I’m sure you agree and you probably are a bit guilty of being an envious and mean girl at some level. I’ve had my not so great moments and I strive to be better. I get asked all the time how I can support another boutique or photographer when that is what I’m trying to succeed in as well, how I can see them for anything but competition. Truthfully, competitors are sometimes created in your mind. You don’t have to bring one another down in hopes it will raise you up, instead lend a hand and climb the hill together. Honestly, I can say that since I’ve had this mind-set and desire to do good by other women I have felt SO uplifted with a much more POSITIVE and OPTIMISTIC attitude!

So make that my last challenge, while you strive to be the best you, give support to others around you trying to do the same.

I’d love to hear your plans and your journey, reach out anytime loves! Or if you know a thriving boss babe who needs to read this, give it a share.

“Siri, play Woman by Kesha”

Costa Rica

The best trip of my life, all planned in a week…

April 2019 was completely hectic, in the best way possible. Skyler and I were getting married, finishing our move back to Savannah and planning a last minute honey moon all in one. Yes, I understand you are wondering why I said “Last Minute” honey moon. Most people plan this from the time that they say yes to the ring itself! Well let me tell you, the months leading up to our wedding day I had never planned that we would go on a honey moon, but rather a long vacation later in the year. We were planning our move back to Savannah right around our wedding and I knew between that and the wedding itself it did not make sense financially to spend a fortune on a trip.

My wonderful husband, on the other hand, decided to change our minds last minute.

The week before our wedding, I was tasked with planning a honey moon. I still had it in my head that I did not want to spend a fortune, but I wanted to make it special. I decided that I was choosing between a short resort trip of 2-4 days where we could relax, be pampered and poolside OR we could “rough it” and see something amazing for a full week, bouncing through Airbnb’s down the coastline of Costa Rica. Clearly I took the second option.

As soon as we flew into San Jose, we rented a tiny SUV and hit the road. I didn’t know exactly where we were planning to go or when, I just knew the address of the first Airbnb which was in a tiny beach town called Jaco. I’ll be honest, I was really worried about cell phone service throughout a country that we had never been in with ZERO large cities in our path, but I bought the plan through Verizon and all was well. We could have gone without cell service though, because even with there not being much city life EVERYWHERE had WiFi! I’m talking, shacks on the side of the road, without walls had WiFi!

Click for First Airbnb in Jaco, Costa Rica

Jaco was a super tiny beach town with not a lot going on in the beginning of May. If we ever went back, this may be the only place we skipped.

After Jaco we drove down to a major Boho beach town called Dominical. This is where you go to relax and enjoy life. I’m convinced that I’ve never seen more relaxed and straight chill people than in this town! We stayed at a awesome Eco-Retreat made out of up-cycled shipping containers. It was seriously an experience! The retreat had a huge Yoga studio, though we did not use it, and a gorgeous pool.

Click for Second Airbnb in Dominical, Costa Rica

While in Dominical, we took a horseback riding tour to see the Nauyaca Waterfalls. This is a MUST do in Costa Rica, it was one of the best parts of the trip. If you aren’t comfortable with riding, you can always take their truck up to the falls as well. They feed you a snack and lunch and you get a solid few hours at the falls.

Against my better judgement, and with my invincible feeling of being in the most beautiful place I’d ever seen, I decided that we needed to climb the waterfall. You’d think I mean along the side but nope, our tour guide took us up the FRONT of the waterfall!!! It was scary but one of the coolest things I’ve ever done.

Can you see us?

Click for Tour Guide we took for Nauyaca Waterfalls

Our last Airbnb was the absolute best experience! We were greeted with welcome drinks and the cutest Dogo. Our room was cozy and spacious and private, with full recommendations on the area. Last but certainly not least, there was an infinity pool that would blow your mind! It overlooked nothing but jungle and the gorgeous ocean. Breathtaking, and so hard to leave.

Click for our last Airbnb in Quepos

Finishing up our trip, we visited Manuel Antonio National Park where we were able to get up close and personal with Monkeys, Sloths & the stunning sites of natural Costa Rica! Further into all of my trip details and recommendations, more than anything I will tell you to just explore! Ride up the side of a random mountain, stop by the shacks without walls, speak to the super sweet and accommodating locals because there is no telling what you may see. Best of luck, and Pura Vida!