Viewing Life Through Images

My life through images speaks to my self-care and self-love journey. I recently did a photo shoot with Jeanette of Jean B. Photography and Consulting. Hope of @focusonmebeauty did an amazing job on my makeup and I could not be more thrilled!

I love sharing and experiencing life through pictures. And look at this, I am smiling in each picture and this is a representation of how I feel on a regular basis. We all have good and bad days and my journey to self-care and self-love has me right here where I want to be.

So what's next on the horizon for me? Well, I plan to pick up my writing on the blog, host an in-person networking event, and continue updating the website social media with the new photos. I am loving the royal blue I will incorporate this into my brand.

Want to check out my writing on some of my favorite topics all in one place? Check out my latest book, Inspiring Creative Passion where I expand on topics of Faith, Love, and Happiness and many more topics to inspire your journey.

A Change of Season

Where does the time go? Here we are in the last quarter of 2018. It is unbelievable how time flies and nothing or no one can stop time. This year marks 5 years as a blogger and it felt so good recently to take out the phrase "relatively new blogger" from my bio. I feel like the change of season and the time in the chair so to speak has allowed me to grow into a full fledged writer.

It took many seasons of change to get to this point. For the first two years, I would blog here and there and I had my writings all over the place. It wasn't until late 2014, early 2015 where I began taking my blog and writing seriously. At the time, I decided I was going to publish a book. I wrote a lot of blog posts and many of them I did not publish and kept them in my journals. The blog posts in journals plus the ones on my website I decided to turn the blog posts which I felt had the most impact on people into my first book, A Life With A View. These posts are near and dear to me to this day and I wanted to share them with the world. The sharing part did scare me quite a bit and I had to work hard to get over my fears with the first fear of publishing a book; something I've never done before.

I was scared to death and had no idea about publishing a book, how to do a book cover or anything. So I took to online research and reached out to friends who have taken this on before me and asked a lot of questions. The most common answer I received other than the helpful tips of getting started with editing, publishing and marketing was: This must feel right to you. I had to feel this in my heart - publishing a book wasn't something I wanted to roll out of bed and just do. I wanted it to feel right, be right, and have my personal touch.

After months of editing and working with a publisher, the final product, first book was almost ready. I say almost because I still wanted to add a little more to my book; embrace the journey a bit more. After all of this, I still hadn't settled on a name for my book. So right now I will take you back a bit, a little history and back to 2014 to my very first blog. My first blog was called FIRE - Faith In Renewing Each Other. I loved the name and still use it in some of my writings today. I felt I wanted and needed something more and I asked myself what did this look like to me. What was my personal touch? What defined me in this life?

One early Sunday morning in the Fall of 2014 exactly 4 years ago as I sat down with my coffee, it finally came to me... A Life With A View. There it was, my personal touch. My very own masterpiece and it was well worth the wait, patience and perseverance as I looked deep within and did not rush the process. The meaning behind A Life With A View held so much in the past and present. There was a time in my life where I could not see past the very moment I was living in and I thought the bad moments and experiences I was having were permanent.

Soon after my first book was published, I thought about what I would do next. I knew I would continue writing and I wanted to do some sort of outreach and connect with others. Ironically, all these years later my word for 2018 is Connected. Who knew? After the many connections I've made over the years I was able to get some good ideas for next steps to compliment my writing. As the seasons changed, the ideas flowed and I connected with like-minded people and continued to set goals for myself.

Now this process wasn't always perfect. I had my ups and downs and wondered what I should be doing and the thief of comparison to others kicked in. Thoughts would enter my head like: "Make sure you post 3 times a week and send emails twice a week..." It took me a while to realize that was not me and I had to do what fit me, my schedule and what was best for my audience. I first I had to find out who my audience was and how I could better serve them with my writing. I tried everything from creating courses to doing webinars and realized that's not me at this point in my life. I am a writer and I best connect with people with words followed by actions, networking and connections.

What does your season of change look like? Do you know what season you are in? Share in the comments and I'd love to continue to conversation.

Inspiring Creative Passion Book

ICP Book Release.jpg

About a year ago, the second book in the A Life With A View Series, Inspiring Creative Passion was released. It took almost a year to finish writing the book, editing, re-writes and my new book was finally released. Thinking back to this time I think about where I was emotionally, mentally, spiritually. I was ready to publish my second book in the A Life With A View Series and I had so much to say and so much more to do. I thought about the things I wanted to share, things I was afraid to share, and all the things I held back on sharing in my first book. How did I know I held back in my first book? Well, for one I knew in my heart I could not share everything I was feeling or going through for fear of being judged and two, one of my readers told me she could tell I was holding back. Wow! I thought if she could see that I was holding back then I am quite sure others could too.

So with the second book, back to the long nights of writing, re-writes and edits. I wanted this second book to be my sophomore success and a deeper dive into the values I hold close to dear: faith, love, happiness, friendship, honesty, trust. I also wanted to be an example to my kids and show them that they can do whatever they put their minds to and the things they go through are life lessons and can be used as building blocks to get to where you want to be.

So how did we get here? Well, about a two years ago I moved to a new website platform and it was a must for me branch out a little more and come from behind the keyboard. The old blog was nice, but I needed a fresh perspective and I wanted to take A Life With A View in the direction I have dreamed of for several years. Writing inspirational posts, books, products filled with inspiration and tell a story - this is where I wanted to go for myself and for my readers and people connected to me and even for those who I hadn't met yet.

I have faith that when you read Inspiring Creative Passion you want to grab your tea, coffee, wine, or other favorite beverage and sit down to read like we are having a conversation. You will laugh, you will cry, you will see yourself in the stories of fear, triumph, getting brand new, and moving forward with positive affirmations that you can take with you along the way.

Inspiring Creative Passion has already been on the road and this is so amazing to me and not what I planned. I do believe this is God's plan and after traveling to New York, New Jersey, North Carolina and Florida, I realized I have some work to do to continue spreading a positive message and meeting, talking and connecting with people. To date, I have met some amazing people who are interested in me; a girl from New Jersey with a dream, a pen, one piece a paper and a name - A Life With A View.

My dream is to touch and help at least one person and they share the message and this keeps going. In order to do this, I had to put myself out there a little more and stop hiding. Although I am outgoing, I tend to be a little shy and reserved and second guess myself. The only way to get through this is to write more, write confidently, write strong. Maybe pushing the envelope in my writing is key? Maybe stop being afraid of what to say or not to say? I do believe we hinder ourselves and I was doing this too.

Well, I know I still have some growing to do and this is why A Life With A View is a series and I hope to get better and better at writing and storytelling to help others do the same whether in writing, expressing themselves through poetry, short stories, long stories, and even through speaking and spoken word. We can do this; and do this together. Do not hide your gifts even if you need time to share them. It is ok to share them little by little; even if in a series.