Shine On And A BIG Announcment

Last Friday, my friend Meagan and I had the pleasure of attending the Shine Headquarters open house here in Phoenix.  You guys know the super adorable Ashley from The Shine Project right?  

If you know The Shine Project, then  you probably know of (and if you're like me, own a lot of)  Threads. Threads is a cause driven business that changes the future of at risk youth.  By employing them, paying them fair wages and even providing scholarships these students are able to go to college.  Many of Threads employees are first generation college students with dream of becoming nurses, broadcasters, writers and engineers.  

We got to meet some of these students first hand.  I'd be lying if I said it didn't make me a little emotional... but then again, what doesn't.

After two years The Shine Project and Threads, grew into it's own space and what an adorable space it is!  The walls are filled with inspiring words, some written by the HQ's visitors and they even have a Polaroid wall that we now adorn!

Like I may have mentioned, I am totally obsessed with Threads, so walking in the door was like walking into accessory heaven.  My shopping euphoria was heightened when the staff offered to extend the chains in my new purchases to fit my extra large wrists!  Hooray!  

There were so many pretty things, it was hard to choose just one... so we didn't.  We ended up with quite a haul of gorgeous jewelry and even some super cute tee's!

It was a really fun way to spend a girls night, get new accesorries and support a business and cause we believe in!  If you are in the Phoenix Area, the Shine Headquarters are open to the public on Thursdays and Fridays, otherwise, check out all their goodies in the online Threads store.   Don't forget to follow Ashley on Instagram to see if she is headed to an event near you!


Since Meagan and I are working to start our own company, it was so inspiring to meet and connect with Ashley and see all the great things she is doing first hand! 

Speaking of... I'm starting a weddings and event company, Your Jubilee!!  I'm so excited that excited doesn't even seem like a good enough word!  Our website isn't live yet, but you can follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter for updates and info!  We have some seriously awesome stuff coming down the pipeline that you won't want to miss!


It Hurts So Good

I have something to admit.
I am a recovering addict.  What's my drug of choice? Love.

Never has this strange obsession been so perfectly explained as it was in this article.  I happened across it a while ago on my Facebook feed an it really resonated with me.

Like the author, I can only confidently say I have fallen in love once.  That's not to say I haven't loved others, but it was different.  I loved as much as I was capable of, but my either inexperienced or recovering heart gave what it was comfortable giving.

For me, dreaming of finding my prince charming started as soon as I understood fairy tales.  I eagerly awaited my 16 birthday when I would be allowed to date, and even managed to get that timeline pushed up 9 months thanks to a little thing called winter formal.  I dabbled in infatuation in high school and I was certainly "in like" with a lot of people, but I didn't ever feel deep, all consuming, fantastic, heartbreaking, life altering love until college.  Falling in love pushes your heart out of it's comfort zone and sometimes, it feels like you jumped right of a cliff.  But I guess that's why they call it falling.

I didn't fall right away, in fact, I can't pinpoint exactly when it happened, but sometime within those first 6 months, I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I had met the man I would someday marry.  Being away from him during the summers felt like absolute torture.  We just seemed to work better together.  He helped me be the best version of myself and knew exactly how to deal with the worst version (particularly late night drunken temper tantrums about going to Denny's).  We were good at giving each other space and then making our time together count.  He seemed to understand me and take care of me in a way no one ever had before.  It was easy, until it wasn't.

Still sometimes I wonder if my memories are jaded.  Was our relationship more complicated than my recollection allows?  Do I only remember the good parts?  While I was in it, did I settle?  Was it just easy because we didn't have the passion to fight with each other? Was that just a version of love, the tip of the proverbial iceberg? I go back and forth on these questions.

Part of me hopes it was just a taste of what true love feels like because I want to believe it can be even better.  Part of me hopes it was the truest love there is for fear of the pain that could come with something more powerful.

Today, a little more than 10 years since our relationship began and 4 years since it's demise, I can confidently say that I am glad I look back on our story as beautiful.

Not all fairy tales have a happy ending, but I think it's time that story is put up on the shelf.  Somewhere I can see it and know it is there,but no longer sitting out.  It's time I let a new fairy tale come my way or at least a good romantic comedy!


Only Know You Love Her When You Let Her Go

That line has really stuck with me over the last week.  When I left Arizona, I was done with her.  Done with her dirt.  Done with her dry heat.  Done with her memories.  I wanted a fresh start.  I wanted trees and grass over cactus and rock.  I wanted the ocean to wash away my past and the salty sea to heal my invisible wounds.

In a lot of ways I was right.  I needed to go have my own adventure.  I needed time to figure out who I was going to be without the influence of anyone else, good or bad.  I needed to test my limits and to just be quiet for a while.  I needed a blank slate.

But the problem with a blank slate is that it takes so long to fill back up again.  And soon I realized that while my new relationships and surroundings were doing me a lot of good, that old slate was filled with a lot a value too.  Value that was irreplaceable.  

As time passed, I began to see the dirt as a majestic painted desert.  Sunrises and sunsets that I never appreciated had me in awe.  And my life felt so empty without the people that made it wonderfully full. Somehow the memories that once made this place so painful seemed to morph into a story of a different girl. A girl I didn't know anymore, because the real me had found her way back to the surface. Then as my grandmothers health declined, I knew I couldn't be so far away.

I was sure I would cry on the drive back to Phoenix.  Sure that closing my California chapter would be sad. Instead I was shocked at how excited I was to get home and get settled back into Arizona life.  If I hadn't left Arizona, I wouldn't know how much I missed it.  I wouldn't have been able to see that it truly is my home.

Sure, I am going to miss year round 75 degree weather, the beach just a few miles away,  the wonderful friends I made and juice shops all over the place, but I was missing too much here.  Someday I'm sure I will take on another adventure- maybe to Northern California, or New York, or even Spain.  Maybe not.  But I think it's safe to say that Arizona will always be my home.  So thanks California for giving me the strength to come home and the confidence to know I made the right decision.


Oh, Hello Again!

Oh yeah, I have a blog...
The last two weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind!  Between moving to Arizona, working on a bunch of crazy stuff for work, getting very close to the launch of my new business and of course spending some much needed time catching up with friends and family, blogging went on the back burner.  There have been so many times that I wanted to write a post, but just didn't have the time to get it right before I was off to my next activity.

So here is a look at what I have been up to:
I hit the theater for a movie solo... literally.  No one else apparently wants to see romantic B movies first thing Sunday morning.  Weird.

I moved.  And by move, I mean sold all my furniture and packed everything else in my car.  If it didn't fit, it wasn't coming.

I said goodbye and closed my California chapter.  Expect a whole post on this in the near future.

I attended a fun lunch with the cutest name tags ever!

After three days of working from home,  err my bed, I decided to get up get dressed and do my hair.  It seemed necessary to document the occasion.

I was faced with a pretty tough decision.  Directional signs aren't usually so complicated to navigate.  I chose cupcake and then I chose to go to the gym.  Also something I will be posting more about soon.

I went to the Salsa Challenge and fell in love with a totally nontraditional salsa with radishes and cucumber in it.  Seriously I could eat it on everything... ever.

I took my little brother to a Spring training game.  Can't you tell by the look on his face that he is 15?

Spring has sprung here in Arizona (because really winter only last like six weeks maximum)  and I couldn't be happier for all the spring activities I have planned.  What are your favorite things to do in the Spring?  Leave a comment and let me know, especially if you're in AZ, so I can add some new things to my list!