Saturday, January 5, 2013

Let's get started!

On January 2nd, as I drove back from the beach (my husband, stepson and his girlfriend spent the holiday at our condo on the Outer Banks) I began thinking about what this new year would hold for me. Would it be low key (probably not), busy (definitely yes) or a mixture of both? Would work take the majority of my time? Family? Friends? What about hobbies? Creativity? Fun? That got me reflecting about where I was happiest in 2012...

Last year was a big mix of a lot of new (or new again) activities and roles. I had gone back into a leadership position at my company and while it was stressful, it was one of my happiest years in my work life to date. Not that there weren't many ups and downs but I really love working with a team and helping them make things happen. It feels great to be part of a dynamic organization made up of smart, motivated people! On the personal front, my stepson started college, my husband began a new career, I spent a lot of time with my elderly parents and also got to spend some quality time with great friends all over the country.

I also made a big decision about what to do with a small business that I was running part time. For the past four years, I baked and decorated custom wedding cakes. Although I have loved baking since I was a child, I became burnt out and physically exhausted. It was all I could do to turn on the oven, let alone bake and decorate a large wedding cake! Early in 2012, I began turning away new orders for the rest of the year and only fulfilled the contracts already on the books. Later in the year, I decided to take a one year break and at the end of 2013, will decide whether to continue doing wedding cakes or shut the business down completely.

That decision left me with a dilemma---what to do as a creative outlet? Wedding cakes were great for my creativity (as long as I could get the brides to think out of the box---they tend to pick the same designs as everyone else during a given year) but with that on hold, I needed to do something else. While driving up highway 168, I thought back to some other times where I was the happiest in 2012 and realized that's when I was with family and friends. There were some big "happenings" in the lives of those I'm closest to: weddings, funerals, parties, trips, engagements, birthdays, etc. I was pretty involved with some of them, including my oldest friend's wedding. My friend had the opportunity to find happiness after a long period of unhappiness and I was honored to not only make the couple's wedding cake, but I was also asked to do the bride's makeup and help with the wedding. It was so much fun and so energizing to me. Plus, not only did I get to experience her happiness, it really fulfilled me as well!

So this blog is an extension of that happiness. The joy I felt this past year in helping friends and family and sharing their life events has inspired me to start this beauty and lifestyle blog for women over 40. At this age, we are generally more confident, more comfortable with ourselves and who we are/look like, etc AND we have the life experience to know what's important. We also have some needs that are a little different than our younger friends (think slower metabolisms, different beauty needs, caring for aging parents, kids going to college, etc). It's my desire that as I learn about new things, I will share them with you!

I'll focus on "over 40" beauty with product recommendations and reviews, basic beauty topics as well as some more advanced makeup and skincare ideas. There will also be posts about travel, dealing with stress, exercise, nutrition, personal finances, elder care and relationships---you know, all the things that are great and challenging about being a fabulous woman over 40!

Let me know what topics you'd like to see covered! Now let's get started!