Friday, December 30, 2011

Chic Christmas Moments

This Christmas went above and beyond! The season is about giving and family, and above all a sense of coming together to feel truly blessed in all that life has to offer. This Christmas was Abby's first Christmas, and while she had no idea what was going on, the abundance of gifts under our tree went mostly in her direction. There was a special moment on Christmas Eve when Kyle said he wanted to give me a gift early, and he presented me with this:
A Sony Bloggie handheld video camera. It shoots HD videos, and takes still pictures while it's recording! So not only will we never miss any of her first moments (I'll be leaving it with our nanny), but we got to record her waking up on Christmas Morning. Now, some might say that the HUGE smile that ensued after we told her Santa came is pure coincidence, but I disagree!
Christmas brought a new Tory Burch's a brown/grey wool with a bronze(ish) metallic logo on it. It's large enough to not only fit my computer, but also double as a diaper bag (and a fabulous carry on bag for travel)! Abby was spoiled with all kinds of clothes and enough toys to fill her (first) toy box. Of course, we started her Disney collection with several DVDs as well.
Most importantly, we got to spend time with family, and it was truly a blessing to see everyone with Abby and Abby with everyone. It was just this time last year that she was about to come into our conscious thought and change our lives forever.....

Until Next Time...


Friday, December 23, 2011

Pictures with santa

I am SO excited for this guy to come to our house in a couple of nights
Yes, I do really mean come to our house. Last night Kyle and I went to Southpoint for Abby's first visit with the man in red. There is the chance that next year she will totally lose it and run screaming from the man with the bag full of gifts, although Kyle is determined that will NOT happen, so we wanted to get it done this year. She slept through the entire thing, then of course on the way home screamed. My interpretation of that is "I DIDN'T GET TO TELL HIM MY WISH LIST!!!!!" I wore my red "I believe" shirt with Santa's face on it, and potentially looked slightly young to be a mom, but I was happy.
I love the holiday season and the magic that comes with it (YES I said holiday season and not just Christmas because not EVERYONE celebrates Christmas this time of year). I'm always excited to get elbow deep in flour and make cookies and come up with clues for my gift tags. Those two things are probably my most favorite traditions of the season.
This year my mom and I included Abby in our cookie dough making, we have a few more cookie types to make and actually make the cookies hopefully today with Kyle. Next year we'll all be covered in frosting and will probably end up with more in our hair than on the cookies and I can't wait!! The clues, my family always writes witty clues on the gift tags to perplex the recipient as to what might be inside. We take it as a personal challenge to stump each other and then go "OHHHH" when we open gifts. Personally, I think it makes spending all that time wrapping gifts MUCH more enjoyable!

Speaking of wrapping gifts....I must finish doing that!

Until next time....


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Perseverance...My 2012 Resolution

I am going to start this long overdue blog with a quote:
"If I had to select one quality, one personal characteristic that I regard as being most highly correlated with success, whatever the field, I would pick the trait of persistence. Determination. The will to endure to the end, to get knocked down seventy times and get up off the floor saying. "Here comes number seventy-one!" Richard M. Devos

I do not think it is a secret to any of my friends, family, readers, or even a select group of total strangers, that my life is absolutely normal chaos. Not to mention, it's the holidays. The holidays always bring their own fabulous group of challenges from finding the "perfect" gift, cooking, balancing a 3 month old and the rest of your family, to somehow finding a way to keep yourself cool, calm, and collected throughout the entire process. Well, last year I got pregnant over the holidays. Seemed all of the pressure of trying in the preceding months with no success fell to the wayside from the pressure of the holidays, and alas! Baby!
This year I'm hoping for another success at finally having the baby I've been dreaming of. No....I'm not talking about getting pregnant again just yet (after all Abby is only 3 months old), but rather the baby of the start-up business.
It seems that start-ups are never really out of their start-up phase until all of a sudden they are...kind of like infants to toddlers. Bam! How'd that happen?
Well right about now I feel like we're going through the terrible twos phase on our way to true bubbly enjoyable interactive toddler-hood. So my New Year's resolution is to persevere.
"If at first you don't succeed, you're running about average." M.H. Alderson
They say that 95% of new companies will fail in the first 5 years. WOW! With a "joyful" combination of things we have managed to stumble our way across the one year mark with a very bright future for Q1 of 2012. I guess that means that we're 20% of the way into making it out of the very dark tunnel that is on the path of every new company. To try and write everything I have learned during 2011 would take a book of its own, and probably a very nice bottle of wine (after all I'd need one to bring up all of the memories and not suppress some). But just like raising children, you don't start a company because it's a "cute idea", you do it out of a complete level of selfless love.
However it is not enough to just keep trudging on. It is not enough to keep TRYING to raise your children right, you have to find a talent for it.
"Perseverance is the most overrated of traits, if it is unaccompanied by talent; beating your head against a wall is more likely to produce a concussion in the head than a hole in the wall."
Sydney J. Harris

If you keep banging your head, you might not get the desired result. Sometimes I feel like I am doing the above, working more towards a concussion than a hole in the wall. Maybe I need to take a step back and grab the sledge hammer, accept assistance, and approach the wall again with the same amount of drive I had when I was beating my head against it. If there is one thing I have learned since becoming a mother that speaks to running a start-up company it is this:

Just because something works today, don't expect it to tomorrow. Yesterday's solution has a variable that today's problem does was yesterday. If you feel like you have run out of options take a look at your child; they will show you the way to a new set. You have to be open to the possibility that your surroundings know more than you do.

Until next time....


Thursday, December 8, 2011

A little bit of Louis...

So I just finished a logo design for a client, and they wanted this bronze brown color. When I was finished mt brain kept returning to the classic logo color on Louis Vuitton bags and I allowed myself a 10 minute indulgence while I ate my lunch to browse the Louis Vuitton website. Five years ago my dad did a "terrible" thing and bought me a Louis bag in their classic pattern that was a perfect school/work bag. Two and a half years later, he bestowed my second bag upon me:
The real "wow factor" from this bag came from buying it in Paris at their flagship store shortly after its remodel. I could have spent days in that store drooling over the classic trunks and running my fingers over the clothing, not to mention coveting the shoes that I would have to use every brain cell concentrating to be able to balance in them. I have used this bag almost every day for the last three and a half years and absolutely adore it.
During my online "window shopping" I stumbled across this little gem:

It's a debossed leather, and comes in several colors. We recently had a photo book order at work that requested a leather cover close to this color and I loved it. They also have a deep purple, which might match more of my wardrobe, but beggars can't be choosers. I should note that I think it will be a long time before I add any more Louis pieces or bags to my collection, and I honestly think I would love to buy my next piece for myself; sort of an accomplishment....and I should also mention that even with that, I wouldn't turn away one as a gift. (Just a girl being honest!)
I don't care if it's a thousand dollar bag, a three thousand dollar dress, or something you found at a consignment store that hugs all of the right places. There is something about a piece of clothing or an accessory that has the power to raise your confidence level to where you need it on the rough days, and lets you say "I have my big girl panties on today and I can conquer the world".
I live for days like that!

Until next time....


Monday, December 5, 2011

Daily thoughts

It seems appropriate that on a Monday I would write something about "the daily grind". The first day back to the office is always something to be scowled at, but today was just a day full of changes that I think my entire family scowled at a little bit. Today Abby stayed home with Grandy (my mom), and I went to work without either of them. Abby has been refusing a bottle for about 6.5 weeks now, but had a breakthrough on Saturday while I was out of the house and took one. Given that she can smell me from ~30 feet away (at least that's what I'm told...but I think it's more like 30 yards), it would make sense that I would need to be nowhere around for her to consider a "replacement". This is the longest I have been away from her...ever...I did go home mid day to nurse her because she was again refusing a bottle and my "mommy guilt" just will not let me "torture" her like that just yet. I know she will not let herself starve...but she's so ridiculously pitiful that it breaks my heart.
So Grandy is doing us a favor by breaking her into the routine of me back at work, and the almost as fabulous perk of setting up a crock pot meal for when we get home. I love love LOVE the crock could I have had TWO in my house still in boxes from when we got married a year and a half ago and never broken them free?!!?!?
On a totally different note, today I am constantly thinking of the daily grind everyone around me has, more particularly my brother (even though he is not directly around me). We live about an hour away from my brother, sister-in-law, and two nephews, and yet we never see them as much as we do. My brother is the owner of Rick Ware Racing and owns/manages Nationwide, Camping World Truck, Arenacross, and several other racing teams. Needless to say....he's VERY busy. I got to see the family this past Saturday at a funeral, and then again (with Abby and Kyle) for dinner at the Chop House.
The funeral was for Rick Ware Racing's Marketing Director whom we lost suddenly due to a heart attack. The amount of work that he put into the organization and his sudden loss was a harsh reality check for me about the fragile state of business and family. How can we ever protect ourselves from something like this being anything besides utterly devastating on all levels. I can offer to help in any manner I can, but I can never one can. I watched my brother during dinner and saw him talk to our dad about the next racing season (dad still races at 69...crazy....but he LOVES it)...and I saw the spark in his eyes. I have always admired the tenacity, dedication, and above all faith that my brother has in his business and family life. It it that much more apparent to me now that I have my own business and my own family, and every day I remind myself to "stick with it".
RWR had a HUGE accomplishment this year in winning the Rookie of The Year title for the Nationwide series with the youngest driver in NASCAR history to ever do so. I feel like I am on my own hunt for the Rookie of The Year for my own industry, but I have much of a less public setting in which to do so. I wish I had more time...or rather that life had more I could sit down with my brother and not only tell him how much I admired him, but also ask him WHERE he finds the strength to keep going when you feel like you're moving away from the light at the end of the tunnel. How do you find the perfect combination of dedication, faith, tenacity...and above all hope for a brighter tomorrow?

I'll have a Chic Moment tomorrow I promise...just trying to sort through them all....

Until Next Time....