High School Sisters by Heart

High School Sisters by Heart

It’s Day 6 of being back to blogging and I’m still glowing from time spent with one of my BFFS –– we’re high school sisters by heart. In many ways, Josette saved me in the 10th grade. While in junior high I’d tested into a Walnut Hills, a college prep school , but unlike most who did, I didn’t start as a 7th grader, which meant all of the cliques had already been formed by the time I showed up as a freshman. Thirty-five years later, I can honestly say it was one of the worst periods of my life. I was bullied for being a Peppermint Patty –– black on the outside and white on the inside –– and didn’t fit in with either group of kids. Add to that the fact that my junior high boyfriend AKA best friend dumped me for an upperclassman who rallied her friends to bully me too, and there were days when I felt I’d rather die than go another day. Only my faith, family and friends outside school got me through. Beautiful, funny, sweet Josette befriending me the following year remains one of the things for which I’m forever grateful. God knit us together in so many ways that we truly became high school sisters by heart.

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High School Sisters by Heart –– Josette and Me, Pink Collar Coach.                                           Josette has always had beautiful hair and it’s growing back in that way.                                      I’m in a floral bell sleeve top and black jeggins with shorties. All Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx. 

Thirty plus years later, though life has not afforded us very many opportunities to spend time hanging out, every interaction feels as though no time has passed. Our discussions no longer center around cute boys, Prince and challenges with our home lives. Now they’re about dealing with the Ds ( the challenges women face like divorce, diagnosis, etc.) but the level of comfort, ease and depth of connection remain the same. This was the case when I treated her to a 50th birthday dinner a few months ago. And the birthday was the best I’ve ever spent with her because she’s conquered a huge D as a one year survivor of stage 4 breast cancer and a double mastectomy. I have ALWAYS loved Josette. Now I absolutely treasure and look up to her more than ever.

The thought of losing my high school BFF has made me more intentional about not letting as much time pass between spending time with my Swan Soul Sister….Hopefully my sharing will inspire you to be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and do the same with your old friends. After all, you can always make new friends but you can’t make old ones like high school sisters by heart.

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

 

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Women’s Center Director Position Cause for Celebration

Women’s Center Director Position Cause for Celebration

It’s Day 4 of being back to blogging and my recent appointment to Women’s Center Director position was a cause for celebration. With a little over two months under my belt in the role, I’m just getting a chance to share how the two women who were instrumental in me landing it blessed me when. In 2017, I left my former job as a director at an agency where I oversaw the care continuum and led the team of life coaches. It was there that I met two Savvy & Chic Swans who I trained to become lead coaches. Leaving them behind when I moved on and began operating my own comprehensive coaching agency, Pink Collar Savvy & Chic, and publishing my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul, I grieved no longer working with them. Little did I know God would use my transition to evolve our professional connection into a personal one. As they supported me in exploring my options, our relationship blossomed. New gig or not, that’s a reason for me to celebrate.

Now both women are dear friends and Soul Sisters. Few in my circle were as thrilled as them for me to be offered an opportunity that is an even better fit for me to live out my purpose of maximizing my strengths to coach, encourage and inspire other women to minimize their barriers and to maximize their best lives –– all to His glory! They took me out to lunch, showered me with cards, gifts, and so much love! This and being the Women’s Center Director at a homeless shelter that provides a holistic, faith based program are truly causes for celebration!

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Valerie, Julie and me, Pink Collar Coach celebrating my Women’s Center Director position. My sweater, jogging, shooties, and handbag all Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx.

Having such accomplished, beautiful, godly women in my life makes each time I’m with them a celebration. Having them share life’s good times –– and the bad ones –– well, that’s not only a reason to celebrate, it’s a reason to rejoice. I hope you are Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and rejoice in the special Swans and Soul Sisters God gives you on the home-pfront and in the workplace –– for all the reasons and seasons.

Be Savvy &  Chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Mentor, Marina, Made My Day

Mentor, Marina, Made My Day

It’s Day 383 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and my Zumba mentor, Marina, made my day! First of all, when I chickened out of leading a song today because her versions were different than mine, not only did she not make me feel bad, she switched up her playlist to remove the song and replace it with two I’m comfortable with. Second, she surprised me by somehow knowing my birthday is tomorrow –– FB? –– and giving me a card and much-appreciated hug after class. Normally I would have waited to open the latter until my actual Bday, but I’m dealing with some Ds –– personal challenges ––and needed a lift. To my delight, she gifted me with a TJ Maxx card! Woot woot! A little retail therapy is now on the agenda after church and teaching Zumba tomorrow…Finally, she showed up to class looking even more super cool and than usual in one of my favorites –– pink and green floral. I couldn’t resist snapping a pic and it put a smile on my face when I pulled out my phone to check the time after seeing The Incredibles 2 with my kiddos – it’s worth the fourteen year wait –– and again after I used it to get a shot of my daughter after we bought and applied her first make up. I hope she’ll grow up to be as pretty inside  as she is on the outside like my Zumba instructor friend. By taking time the to let me know she was thinking of me, my mentor Marina made my day!

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Marvelous Zumba Mentor, Marina!

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose blogger posting for the last time as a forty-eight-year-old, I’m so thankful for friends (and Cohorts in Crime of the Good Kind) like Kay Fittes of High Heeled Success, who mailed me a bday card last week. And for my sister-in-law, Sue who brought me an early birthday gift –– Calvin Klein athletic wear and a TJ Maxx gift card –– when she was in town from Atlanta for a wedding last weekend. I’m so blessed to have these women ––my Swan Soul Sisters –– in my support system, especially when dealing with the challenges life keeps throwing my way. They may not even be aware that I’m going through anything, but I’m aware that they’re there. They’re all gifts from God for which I am eternally grateful. Because just when the Ds threaten to bring me down, God sends one of them –– like my mentor, Mariana –– along to make my day.

Are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about acknowledging when someone makes your day on the home front or in the workplace? By telling them, you just may make theirs, too.

Rocking the Ruffles Trend

Rocking the Ruffles Trend

It’s Day 297 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and snow the day after Easter gave me the opportunity to rock the ruffles trend. I received a blingy gold ruffled sweater as a Christmas gift but had only gotten to wear it once during the holidays and figured I’d have to wait until this winter to wear it again. But that was before it snowed the last day of Spring Break! When I awoke to a blanket of white, I happily donned my gold sweater for a day with a Soul Sister, Kibby, and my kiddos who adore her. I treated her to lunch which consisted of leftover Honeybaked ham and all the sides. We laughed alot reminiscing over times spent together and laid plans for more. Then Kibby treated me to a movie – I Can Only Imagine – which was even better the second time around. Zumba was next on the agenda, but I  couldn’t resist a photo in front a great background wall color before we got changed. It turned out well, but when I tried to land on a title for the post, I came up blank and had to look up “fashion ruffles” for inspiration. It’s definitely a trend, so that got incorporated into the title in the end. Not one to usually follow them (I just wear what I like), I did love rocking this feminine, romantic ruffles trend.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, Rocking the Ruffles Trend. Sweater, ribbed sweater pants, tall calf boots, & floral handbag all Calvin Klein. Pants are several years old and the boots were $11 at Goodwill. Everything else, including gold “ruffled” earrings – TJ Maxx.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Maxxinista, I’m enjoying our extended winter because it gives me a chance to wear some of my favorite cold weather pieces. Though I’m not trendy and don’t go out and buy a bunch of new clothes every season, I do use my personal sense of style to make new trends fit into my existing wardrobe and budget. Gift cards are my favorite and are usually spent picking up a few pieces that put a fresh take on my staples. That’s what this sweater and accessories did for sweater pants I’ve had for years. For me, pulling together a look is a form of self expression that is even more rewarding when I maximize my resources and am a good steward of what I have. And when it allows me to rock a romantic trend like ruffles.

How are you Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about rocking trends at home or work while maximizing your staple pieces?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Playing Around With Poses on President’s Day (True Confessions of A Beginning Blogger)

Playing Around With Poses on President’s Day (True Confessions of A Beginning Blogger)

It’s Day 258 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and my Soul Sister Kibby and I spent some time playing around with poses on President’s Day. Taking advantage of the opportunity to have a day off from working, we planned a needed Girls’ Day to have lunch, watch romantic comedies, and then go to Zumba. Right before we changed for the latter, I wanted to take a pic for tonight’s post and expressed that I needed to change up the way I stand in photos. Kibby styled this one, and other than a bit of belly bulge, I’m pleased with it. Besides, I’m committed to avoiding what I’ve come to think of as the “meme mentality” or basically posting pictures that scream perfection in every aspect of life. So rather than asking for a redo, I’m being transparent and let the bulge (as well  the toys on the floor) be. The resulting shot feels authentic and makes me glad that I spent part of President’s Day playing around with poses.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, trying a new pose in a gray duster, blush top, gray jeggings, & taupe flats.   The floral handbag ties all the colors together and hints at spring.                                                         All Calvin Klein purchased over a number of years from TJ Maxx. 

Not only did the pose show a different side of me, it showcased some pretty Simply Shabby Chic decor, like the fretwork frames holding favorite pictures of my babies at ages two and three and the photo album. The wicker mirror with a shallow basket attached is one of my earliest flea market finds and the wicker basket underneath a table I lugged home by myself from Service Merchandise back in the day is one of two I got from Babies R Us for  my fourteen-year old’s nursery. Though I didn’t plan it, it seems florals was is a theme of the picture, as seen in the handbag, Simply Shabby Chic waste basket, the “Be Kind” wooden sign, the winter hydrangeas, and the Valentine’s Day roses displayed in a large Goodwill Ball mason jar.

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Kibby looks lovely and carries on the floral theme, enhanced with tassels – on her belt, boots, and the earrings she made.

Then, there’s Kibby’s pose. She’s so natural – I want to channel that! I have a lot to learn from her and look forward to having her style me into some fresh poses during our weekend excursions.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose newbie blogger, I must confess that putting myself out here is humbling. My body, hair and face aren’t picture perfect. Neither are my settings. If I focus on all of my “barriers”, the devil (the worst D, or challenge of them all), will have me convinced that I’m not enough and don’t have enough to be doing this. But if I can stay focused on my blessings, my Deliverer (the best D ever!) will keep me convinced that I’m limitless and can do whatever He has planned for me – including more playing around with poses!

How can you be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic and play around with new ways of doing things in your personal or professional life, even if it means being transparent and letting your “barriers” show?

Be savvy & chic,

~ Pink Collar Coach

Serene in Shades of Blue

Serene in Shades of Blue

It’s Day 242 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project and I spent my Saturday feeling serene in shades of blue. Following an intense morning of exercise where I opened Zumba class and then taught one in the middle, I put a Christmas gift card from my sweet hubby to use and did lunch and lots of catching up with a sweet soul sister. Being together is like applying a healing balm for any wounds our personal and/or professional worlds have inflicted. Time with other Pink Collar Swans is special, so I always pack something pretty to wear after working out. This week, the long, langourous lunch, and shades of blue left me feeling so serene.

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Shades of Blue – Side bow tied sweater, stretch dark wash jeans, subtle blue shoes, a perforatded handbag, and sunglasses in the same shade have a soothing effect on me. All Calvin Klein from TJ Maxx or Marshall’s. I’m a Maxxinista; my friend is Fashionista, so she appreciated all the blue.

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Maxxinista, I’ve always viewed clothing as a form of self-expression. I use it to enhance my moods or to embrace them. Today, because I got to wake up and do something I absolutely adore, in a setting with supportive women, and then got to spend the afternoon sharing life’s ups and downs with someone who’s consistently there for the highs and lows, I wanted to do both. Life isn’t perfect by any stretch, but I’m so incredibly blessed and thankful that I feel such  serenity and peace in my heart. I can’t imagine being a hater who has to live between their own ears. It’s infinitely better to know though I’m not perfect, I’m perfectly accepted and loved by my heavenly Father and can spend my Saturday serene in shades of blue.

How about you? Are you at peace between your ears? If you could assign a color to your feelings today, what would it be? What Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose steps can you take to bring more shades into your personal and professional life? Finding your fitness fit? Owning your sense of style? Time with a friend? Nurturing your faith?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink Collar Coach

Friend Fix

Friend Fix

It’s Day 231 of the Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Project, and I was delighted to get a friend fix. Yesterday, I put in a full day working on professional tasks so that I could take a long, leisurely lunch with one of my closest friends today. Balance is such an important part of self-care and for me it means spending time with Pink Collar Soul Sisters. My women’s networking event and her plans prevented us from hanging out last weekend. Now she’s heading out of town on vacation, which means we won’t see each other this weekend or next. That being the case, we strategically scheduled a lunch date to tide us over. By the grace of God, I’ve never been addicted to a substance (nor do I judge anyone who has), but there’s something euphoric about about a good friend fix.

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Me, Pink Collar Coach, and one of my dearest Soul Sisters, Kibby. A date with a favorite friend deserves a favorite dress. Blush faux suede sheath dress and zipper cardigan with blush handbag. Wedge booties have a zipper up the back too. All Calvin Klein TJ Maxx or Marshall’s.                                                   Kibby always looks great with her fun, feminine vibe.

I love that phase! Yesterday was the first time I heard it – when a life coach I used to supervise/now friend – emailed me saying she needed a Tammi fix. Those two little words filled my heart with joy and made me realize how much I miss her too since I moved on from my last director role and she ceased her work with the organization soon thereafter. I will forever more attribute “friend fix” to her and had to smile when I heard her name in a song soon after reading her email. People often comment about some friends being for a season and others for a reason. For a season, this life coach was a close to a right hand as I had in my director role. She was phenomenal and made my job infinitely better. In turn, she often commented on how much I encouraged her and did a great job equipping her to do the work. The reason we remained connected professionally is that we felt an affinity from the beginning and that has translated into being able to communicate freely about our personal lives and shared faith. A temporary season and eternal reason…

As a Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose Soul Sister, though I understand the importance of spending time with friends, sometimes it’s a challenge. The list of those I’ve been  aiming to meet with since before the holidays are my best friend from high school without whom I wouldn’t have survived it (she’ll be thrilled about my debut novel, Seasons of Her Soul!), a parent of one of my 6th grader students who was killed at age 21 in a car accident, bonding us together forever, a Kinder Care center director sister who is valiantly fighting melanoma and is a shero, a former co-worker and beloved sister in Christ who is now an empty nester, a few dear friends from my last job, the 3Gs (we began teaching in our 20s, 30s, and 40s – now we’re in our 40s, 50s, and 60s), and The Lattes (3 black + one white = coffee with leche/milk)! Considering the length of the list, I need to be very intentional about scheduling get togethers. Because as much as I need a friend fix, I know many of them could use a Tammi fix too.

How can you  be Pink Collar Savvy & Chic on Purpose about friend fixes? From which friends could you use a fix? Which could use a fix from you?

Be savvy & chic,

~Pink    Collar Coach

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