Pretty, Plush Pillows Promote Peaceful Sleep

Pretty, Plush Pillows Promote Peaceful Sleep

It’s another Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose day and after lots of stress and little sleep during the work week, lying down on my sofa for a nap amidst pretty, plush pillows promoted peaceful sleep.

Serene at Home (Personal Life)

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Oldie but goody Simply Shabby Chic faux velvet plush pink pillows – Target. New Shabby Chic faux velvet pumpkins embellished with beads – TJ Maxx.

Dealing with the Ds –– the challenges women face –– on the home front and in the workplace, wore me out. After enjoying unseasonably warm fall temps in the 90s just last week here in Cincy, the sudden change in the weather wreaked havoc with my asthma. I got the diagnosis at age 26. At 50, I still wake up in the wee hours wondering why a train is outside my window before I realize it’s  me wheezing. Once I’ve taken all of my medicine, it’s difficult and sometimes impossible for me to get back to sleep. And despite my desire not to, I find myself dwelling on my Ds in the form of divorce, domestic court issues, dysfunctional relationships, etc. Doing so could plummet me into depression. But I’m determined –– a good D! –– to minimize these thoughts by maximizing my faith. Praying and literally turning on the light to dispel the darkness, I read Scripture and whatever Christian fiction is on my nightstand until I can drift off. This afternoon, I wasn’t battling depression. I’d just worked all day, danced all night at Zumba for the Cure, and then again at this morning’s class…Ah, sleep in heavenly peace!

Smart at Work (Professional Life)

This week marked the one year anniversary of my role as  a Women’s Center Director.  And boy was it a doozie! With the demographic we serve, drug addiction and mental health diagnoses can create danger. That being the case, I recently had our onsite therapist provide an in-service to equip the staff with the tools for  de-escalation of mental health crises. Without going into detail, I’ll just say, the tools were definitely needed! The interaction left me shaken and so sad. Having a safe sanctuary –– a space that represents separation of professional and personal life is essential to my sanity! The fact that I didn’t get one phone call or text (I’m always on call) while I napped made  the sleep even sweeter.

Spirit-Led (Prayer/ Putting Scripture into Practice)

My prayer for you is that you will put your trust in Him. When you do, you’ll have this assurance of what God will do: “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” (Isaiah 26:3, NIV). And I hope you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and surround yourself with things that help you get good rest. Whether you’re dealing with Ds in your personal and/or professional life, quality of sleep is just as important as quantity. So splurge on those sheets, or that lavender spray (I have several bottles of Shabby Chic Chamomile Lavender, available at TJ Maxx and Home Goods), or those pretty, plush pillows to promote peaceful sleep. When you do, you’ll minimize your barriers and maximize beauty and your best life.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

 

 

 

Rendering the Past Historical

Rendering the Past Historical

It’s another day of being Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and my kitty, Peppa, and I are both rendering the past historical.

From the time my hubby and I adopted this petite feline from the local shelter’s My Furry Valentine as my gift four years ago when she was two, I’ve known she’s an abuse survivor. Though sweet and loving, she is suspicious and leery as well. Petting has to take place on her terms and timeframe. And when she’s done she’d done. Finally, if you don’t want to be clawed to shreds, never pick her up in your arms while standing or a frantic scramble to escape will ensue and result in bloodshed.  She suffers from post traumatic stress disorder and her maladaptive behavior when she’s triggered is her desperate attempt to keep herself safe. It’s classic fight or flight! With her PTSD from the past, it’s hard for her to feel at peace in the present. So when I found her finally sleeping in the Shabby Chic pet bed I got her months ago when I started renting the tiny house, I thought, Peppa’s rendering the past historical! 

Serene at Home (Personal Life)

Being brutally honest, I get Peppa and recognize glimpses of myself in her.  Having been exposed to Ds –– the challenges women, or in Peppa’s case, females face –– like danger, distrust, domestic violence, dysfunctional relationships, etc. –– I understand why she defaults to the only way she knows how to deal. Thankfully, because she’s gotten four solid years of love, acceptance, gentleness and kindness, she’s come out of her shell a bit and seems to be getting past some of the things I suspect happened in her past. For me, it’s blogging and writing fiction based in fact (Hold on Her Heart, the sequel to my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul is in the works!) to process my hurts and to heal. It’s also surrounding myself with supportive Swan Sisters and finding solace in my Shabby Chic sanctuary!

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Peppa Loveday Rendering the Past Historical in her Shabby Chic pet bed.   Everything in this pic is Simply Shabby Chic from Target, or Shabby Chic -from TJ Maxx or Home Goods. Wedding pic of me and my hubby.

Spirit-Led (Prayer)

And it’s leaning into my faith and finding safety in a multitude of counselors.  The latter is where I learned about the concept of rendering the past historical. They’ve helped me to process my hurts of yesterday so they won’t continue to have power today. By doing so, like Peppa Loveday,  I’m able to minimize my Ds and maximize beauty and my best life.

Savvy & Chic on Purpose (Putting it into Practice)

That’s my prayer for you.  If you are dealing with the Ds, perhaps suffering from post traumatic stress disorder, there is help. The Lord cares about what you’ve gone through (personally and professionally) and has gifted counselors to grow your coping skills. I hope you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and begin rendering your past historical to render your present and future beautiful, too.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

P.S. Publishing my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, has helped render the past historical. Hope you’ll check it out!

To preview/purchase the print or Kindle version of my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, please visit Amazon.com at 
 

 

 

 

 

Life Lesson from Loads of Laundry

Life Lesson from Loads of Laundry

It’s Day 49 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and this busy weekend has taught me a life lesson from my loads of laundry. For many of us, this week was Back to School. As the mother of an 11th and 10th grader who is divorced –– a D or challenge women face –– from their father, I had them this weekend and a lot of the time went into school-related activities and making sure they were set to return for the first full week tomorrow. Between a trip to the library, running my daughter to a birthday sleepover, feeding my ravenous son and keeping him entertained Friday, I did laundry. Same thing Saturday before and after I picked her up, fought construction to make it to Zumba, did the grocery shopping and banking, then made lunch and finally dinner, all while tossing loads in and pulling them out. This morning, as I listened to Joel Osteen –– I folded and put clothes and linens away prior to taking Liv out for last minute school supplies. (What ever happened to getting the list before classes started?). Though there were moments when I felt like I’d either been put through the wringer or the spin cycle –– this is my first time blogging since Thursday! –– there wasn’t one where I didn’t feel blessed to have these tasks to do for my children and home. That’s the life lesson I’ve learned from my loads of  laundry.

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DIY Simply Shabby Chic “Laundry” banner on Shabby Chic bulletin board. For years I looked for a laundry sign. When I came across this board strung with wire and clothes pins, I was able to create my dream sign.                     DIY letters – Target. Bulletin Board –– TJ Maxx.

You see, though sometimes I look at all of the bath towels and face cloths to be washed, at all the bedding and more clothes than I can keep up with, I’m often reminded of a story  I once heard a story about a woman who sat all alone in her immaculate house and longed for it to be cluttered with the chaos of children…Because I don’t have mine all of the time, I can relate. When they’re here, it’s more joy than drudgery doing the mundane things for –– and with –– them. I touch the towels and am thankful they take care of themselves the way I taught them to. I look at the linens and love that they lie in them and sleep luxuriously when living under my roof. And I cuddle the clothes and am conscious of how quickly their time as children will cease. Each time I’m immensely grateful that despite a divorce,  the Lord has –– for now –– blessed me to serve them. Yes, on purpose. Focusing on that allows me to minimize my D and to maximize beauty and my best life.

One day, they’ll be grow up and away and my washer and dryer will get a lot less use. Til then, I’m taking my life lesson from the laundry to heart and am determined to be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and to treasure the loads.

Be Savvy & Chic, 

~Pink Collar Coach

 

Pink Collar Coach’s Positivity Post – August 13, 2019

Pink Collar Coach’s Positivity Post – August 13, 2019

My sweet Sister-in-law, Sue and my Zumba mentor/Swan Sister, Marina, both blessed me with TJ Maxx gift cards for my birthday last month.  I spent them both well and had a few dollars left over, so I snapped up these Rachel Ashwell tumblers from the clearance aisle for $2 a piece. They now serve as Shabby Chic medicine cabinet storage. Shabby Chic Room Spray bottles (also from TJ’s) are too beautiful to be tucked away and line the top. It may sound silly, but my Shabby Chic medicine cabinet made my morning and getting ready for work lovely!

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My Shabby Chic Medicine Cabinet Storage Makes Makes My Morning!

Stylish storage solutions can help minimize disorganization –– a D or challenge women face –– and will help you maximize beauty and your best life! I pray your day is Pink Collar Savvy & Chic, organized and filled with things that make it for you, too!

Be Savvy & Chic,

~ Pink Collar Coach

Sweet 16 in Light Of Dayton Shooting

Sweet 16 in Light Of Dayton Shooting

It’s Day 35 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and while I’m still savoring my daughter’s Sweet 16 birthday yesterday, it’s in light of today’s Dayton shooting. Shortly after we finally wrapped up the special day right around midnight, the 250th shooting in the US occurred an hour later, just 45 minutes away. For a brief period I  worked a few exits north of Dayton for the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services and drove through it daily. And now that I’m the director of a homeless shelter for women and children whose executive director pastors a church the residents attend twice a week, this shooting felt very close to home personally and professionally. To fall asleep chatting with my birthday girl about the already fond memories made  –– we share a room at what I now think of as the Savvy & Chic sanctuary ––  and to wake up to the fearsome news that nowhere seems safe anymore shakes me to the core. So, after spending time praying for the situation, we continued the Sweet 16 celebration but did it in light of the Dayton shooting.

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Shabby Chic Sweet 16 sumptuous setting. DIY Simply Shabby Chic banner. All decor also Simply Shabby Chic from Target except for The Prairie by Rachel Ashwell table runner, which is from TJ Maxx. 

As if the above wasn’t bad enough, my new 16-year-old discovered the other mass shooting that occurred in El Paso, Texas not a day earlier. What kind of world do we live in where an innocent girl’s milestone birthday memories will be forever marred by back-to-back mass shootings? She and her brother are eighteen months apart, almost the same span as the sister murdered  in Dayton at the hands of her brother? Death is one of the Ds –– challenges not only women but that we all face. And while I blog about how to minimize barriers in order to maximize beauty and our best lives, the only suggestion I have for this one is that we put faith over fear and pray. For our country. For the families and loved ones of the victims. For my Sweet 16 year-old daughter in light of both of these shootings.

I pray you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and join me in praying for our land to be healed. God’s Word tells us, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV).  God bless you and bless the USA.

Be savvy &  chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Shabby Chic & Sweet Sixteen!

Shabby Chic & Sweet Sixteen!

It’s Day 34 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and my daughter and I have had such a beautiful day –– Shabby Chic & Sweet 16! This morning I woke up at 5am and  assembled a Simply Shabby  Chic DIY banner proclaiming “Sweet 16” then proceeded to package all her presents in coordinating Simply Shabby Chic gift bags. Next I changed the table runner to one in robin’s egg blue from Rachel Ashwell’s The Prairie and spelled out Cami Liv with extra banner medallions. By that time she’d awoken and I loved on and prayed over her for a while before serving her requested Lucky Charms –– the marshmallows just happened to go along with the pastel theme –– and Sunny D in bed. Once she was settled with her breakfast, I proceeded to bake, frost and decorate her Bday cake with sprinkles in the soft rainbow shades and placed it atop my Simply Shabby Chic cake stand. The early morning and effort were so worth it because of the look on her face when she finally saw the Shabby Chic stage set for her Sweet Sixteen!

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Cami Liv – Sweet 16! We didn’t plan it, but she dressed in floral pink, blue and green!              All table decor Shabby Chic, Simply Shabby Chic and The Prairie by Rachel Ashwell –Purchased over time from Target and TJ Maxx since shortly after my daughter’s birth. 

Though I thought this milestone birthday should be celebrated with a big party, my daughter had other ideas in mind. These included  a shopping trip to Plato’s Closet –– a resale shop for teens –– and to Aveda, a salon that also sells face, hair and makeup products.  She wanted Subway for dinner and then to eat cake and watch LaLa Land again! To my delight, apart from the eating, she wanted to do all of this just with me…I selected a birthday card for her that states “Every perfect gift, is from above.” (James 1:17). Yes, her life is a gift. By wanting to spend such a special day just as mother and daughter, however, I feel like I was given one all over again.

Being divorced –– a D or challenge women face –– can make birthdays brutal. Next year I won’t see her at all. And this year could have been very expensive with everything she wanted to do. But by having lovely things on hand, I was able to create a sumptuous setting without breaking the bank and could use my resources for her shopping spree instead. By being Pink Collar Savvy & Chic I minimized the barriers and maximized beauty and our best lives. So blessed with lots of Shabby Chic and a very Sweet Sixteen!

Be savvy &  chic,

~Pink  Collar Coach

Pink Collar Coach’s Positivity Post

Pink Collar Coach’s Positivity Post

 

Prepping for my daughter’s

Shabby Chic Sweet 16!

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Simply Shabby Chic gift bag, tissue and DIY banner. All from Target. Shabby Chic rug – TJ Maxx. 

The birth of my daughter coincides with me developing boundaries. In that way, it helped me to minimize my barriers and to maximize beauty and my best life. So blessed by her!

Pray you have a beautiful day leading into the weekend!

-Pink Collar Coach

Shabby Chic Shadow Box Frames

Shabby Chic Shadow Box Frames

It’s Day 30 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and feeling nostalgic because my baby girl turns Sweet 16 this weekend, I reframed her baby picture and ballet shoes using Shabby Chic shadow box frames. Shabby Chic style as made popular by Rachel Ashwell, the founder of the brand by that name, is also celebrating a birthday this year –– its 30th! And I’ve been enamored with the style for just as long. Sixteen years ago, however, the Simply Shabby Chic partnership with Target that offers her pieces at an affordable price point hadn’t been established. That came about in 2008. When my daughter was born in 2003 authentic Shabby Chic items were only available at Rachel Ashwell’s stores in select locations and weren’t accessible for me. That being the case, following in the founder of Shabby Chic’s shoes, I’d scour flea markets and antique malls for vintage pieces, like the the ornate oval gold frame I painted white and distressed to hold my daughter’s picture and a white shadow box with a carved bow detail to display her ballet shoes. They did so until recently when I scored big time at TJ Maxx and lovingly transferred both to these gorgeous Shabby Chic shadow box frames.

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Though these are actually 3D photo frames, I inserted my daughter’s pic and love the result! Using the cardboard backing that came with the frame, I pinned the shoes to it and voila! 

It may sound strange, but Shabby Chic decor has provided a one of the most consistent threads through my adult life and helped minimize the Ds ––  barriers and challenges women face ––  in the forms of death, depression, diagnosis, domestic violence, divorce, domestic court, dysfunctional relationships, and the list could go on…It has provided beauty, comfort and function –– Rachel Ashwell’s three maxims – and so much inspiration. Not only in the way I decorate my home, but in the way I live in it. She opened her first shop  as a divorced, single mother of a girl and boy. Soon it reached such success it was called, “The shop heard round the world”. Personally and professionally, this Pink Collar Savvy & Chic mother, entrepreneur and creative leader has been a blessing as one of my greatest role models and contributors to me maximizing beauty and my best life.

I pray you will be inspired by this simple task of transferring beloved keepsakes to preserve the memories in an even more meaningful way. Perhaps you’ll even be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and reframe or organize pictures of your loved ones. By doing so, we honor them and their importance in our lives. You may also find any residual Ds fade from memory and only the beautiful, best images remain. Even if you don’t use Shabby Chic shadow box frames.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

Pink Collar Coach’s Petite Retreat – Pt. 1

Pink Collar Coach’s Petite Retreat – Pt. 1

It’s Day 20 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and dealing with a D or challenge women face –– in the form of a disabled vehicle –– has made me even more thankful for my petite retreat. Although, upon seeing the place for the first time Friday night when she drove me home, one of my Swan Sisters, Sonya, pointed out that what I’ve always referred to as a tiny house isn’t actually that tiny…From the moment I saw the For Rent sign in the window of this 1905 shotgun, I knew I’d found the perfect spot to meet my personal and professional needs as a wife, mother, stepmom of a blended family with adult children, author, life coach, and entrepreneur. And this small –– relatively speaking –– space has delivered in spades! Having a peaceful place to parent and pursue creative endeavors –– like blogging (it serves as a studio) and working on Hold on Her Heart, the sequel to my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, has been instrumental in minimizing personal and professional challenges and maximizing beauty and my best life. Having this sanctuary is both a luxury and a sacrifice. But so worth it because my sanity has been saved by this petite retreat!

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View of front side entrance. Valance in transom window above door all pillows, rugs, and many accessories Simply Shabby Chic from Target or Shabby Chic – TJ Maxx, Home Goods.

 

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Front view from the street. The picket fence needs love and Liv and I plan to give it soon!

If you’re anything like me, at times going out into the world feels like entering the fray. Having a safe place, a sanctuary, that soothes your soul can provide much needed respite. That doesn’t necessarily mean going out and renting a house or apartment. It could be converting a garage or shed into a She Space. Or simply carving out a nook inside filled with things that speak specifically to you.

Whatever it looks like, I hope you’ll figure out what works for you and that your petite retreat will allow you to be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic in order to minimize your challenges and maximize beauty and your best life, too.

Be savvy & chic, 

~Pink Collar Coach

Being My Brand – Pink Collar Savvy & Chic

Being My Brand – Pink Collar Savvy & Chic

It’s Day 15 (reset) of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and after reading a comment in the 50th birthday card from my staff,  I’m still celebrating the concept of being my brand. Even though I’m intentional about being Pink Collar Savvy & Chic both in my personal and professional life, I’m still blown away and humbled by the fact this smart young woman sees me this way. That means so may others! Because this blog almost always features my favorite brands and retailers –– Calvin Klein, Shabby Chic, Target and the TJ Maxx family of retailers, it could leave readers with the impression those are the things I most value. But in essence, a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic Swan is Spirit-Led, serene at home,  smart at work, serves on purpose, and owns her sense of style. That’s being my brand.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, being my brand in head-to-toe pale pink Calvin Klein – TJ Maxx.                                                 Fashion wise, for me  it can’t get much more Pink Collar Savvy & Chic than this!             PERFECT PROFESSIONAL PACKAGING. Came together/purchased over years’ time.               Pink Timex watch – Target.

And if I’m living any of these attributes to the degree that other women see and want to emulate them, then I’m thankful my prayers to be used by Him and to point to Him are being answered…As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Director of a Women’s Center, who has the privilege to be able to live out my purpose to coach, encourage and inspire women to minimize their barriers and to maximize beauty and their best lives –– all to His glory, reading “You are your brand” is one of the best compliments I’ve ever received. “Being my brand”.  Hmm. Not just best compliment. Best. Birthday. Card. Ever.

I hope you’ll be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose and be your brand –– whatever that means to you –– too.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach