Sunday, April 21, 2013

In the Heart of Massachusetts...

Man... it sure feels good to be back home... the state I never wanted to leave; the one I still love to come back to. No matter how long I am away, when I return, the comfort I feel surrounds me like a blanket on a cold winter night. Although the tragedy of the Boston Marathon made for an interesting first day back, being able to watch local news and see everything unfold in REAL time was a moment now in history that I am now a part of... that certainly doesn't happen everyday, and being that I NEVER watch the news, it will be something I will always remember watching.

Tomorrow I will catch a flight to head over to Provincetown for an exclusive 5 day makeup training called Evolution; I was lucky enough to be one of only 20 makeup artists in the country chosen to go and I am SO STOKED! After a very eventful week, I feel that a heap of creative juice flow will really do me some good.



At the beginning of my week I was creating looks for Glyn Dewis at Photoshop World Orlando 2013. We had a Top Gun themed key note this year; in my opinion the best one since we did Project Photoshop a few years back. I  hated missing my favorite parts but I had to drive back to Tampa to a sick child.















My daughter Abrielle was admitted to the hospital earlier this week but luckily got to go home yesterday. A three year old in the hospital with Pneumonia was a bit scary and unnerving; especially knowing that I was going away for 12 days on business.
Thank GOD she is home doing MUCH better! I am so thankful for my Mom, who stepped right into Mommy mode in my absence spending 3 sleepless nights by her bedside, (Thanks Mom you ROCK!) I am also incredibly lucky to have such wonderful friends who stepped in to take care of my other two children, Corey... who is now with them at home and for those who offered help that I ended up not needing. They say it takes a village and I truly feel that I have the greatest village ever!

I have had a great time so far in Mass and it is just getting started. I have a fun-filled week ahead and I will be sure to keep you posted as much as I can (depending on WI-FI service) If there is one thing I can say tonight, it's that when you are away from home you really miss and appreciate what's waiting for you when you return. I am happy and excited to be traveling with my career because it's what I've always wanted... but that does not mean I don't get homesick because let's face it... I have a pretty cool gig back home. The lesson tonight to take away is this...

We can always complain. We can piss and moan about what we hate in our lives, we can wish for vacations away, and our kids and spouses can get on our very last nerve... but when you don't have your kids tugging at your legs, your husband or wife kissing you at night and the monotony of your daily routine, you will definitely miss it when it's a good thing. Learn to appreciate what you have and when you want more? Well... just GO GET IT!

Have a great night everyone! Best wishes for a terrific Sunday!

xoxo 
~Shells~




Monday, April 15, 2013

ROCK THIS MONDAY

This morning I keep saying to myself... "Breathe, breathe... you will get it all done."  I have NEVER been on a 12 day trip and I am starting to lose my head a bit. I worked all weekend which left me no time to gather my thoughts, or my clothes or anything for that matter and of course, regardless of having to go on this trip I still have three kids at home that starve for attention, laundry to consume my time, dinner, lunch and baths etc etc etc.






Being that my mother is so awesome and helpful, she offered to take Abrielle for the weekend to make things easier, but then had to inform me yesterday afternoon that she was sick... no school for her today; and I just added a trip to the doctor to my list just in case it's more than a nasty virus. (can't leave your child for 12 days not knowing if she will need more than hugs and rest) Isn't it funny how wrenches are thrown at you when you REALLY don't need it? See, I am not immune!




As I trickle down my to do list this morning I am trying to keep my mind focused; a hard thing to do when I have this many things going through my head. I will take a few deep breaths to calm my fluttering nerves, stick to my list to keep me organized and sip a cup of coffee for... well just because I want it. Now all I need is chocolate and the day will be even brighter.

I have a lot to look forward to and to be thankful for despite my feelings of minor anxiety that I will forget something important, like my underwear (I better pack those first!) I know I can do this... I know I will get it done, somehow, some way. I WILL tackle this list and I will do it in time to relax a bit tonight.
(that's my mantra/self talk for the day)

As you start your week today, what will your mantra be? Will it be something like...  "I will make the most of my day" or " I will not let negative thoughts consume me" or perhaps it will be something simple like "I will wake up with a smile every day"  Whatever it is, have a mantra, have something that you say to yourself or keep your mind on that is positive each and every day. Play it in your head or say it out loud like a recorded message the moment negative or stressful things start to creep into your day, I do it ALL of the time, "self-talk" is one of my secrets and it really WORKS!

I THINK I CAN, I THINK I CAN! I KNOW I CAN!

NOW GO ROCK THIS MONDAY AND DON'T LOOK BACK!

XOXO
~SHELLS~

Sunday, April 14, 2013

My Favorite Inspirational Quote...

The other day, I was asked by a fan/friend what my favorite quote was, this was a tough one to answer. I LOVE inspirational quotes and have SOOOO many favorites! As I dug through my brain I tried to think of ones that I constantly work into my life, ones that change how I look at my "every day." So after mulling over this for about 5 minutes, I decided on one that I look at every single day;

"Be careful what you set your mind to 
for you will surely achieve it!"
 Napoleon Hill

This quote is written at the top of a list of quotes that I wrote on a dry erase board which hangs on a wall in my kitchen. Maybe you are thinking... "the kitchen is an odd place to have quotes" I say, "yeah not in my house." I spend a lot of time in that room... HELLO? With a  family of 5, the kitchen and the laundry room are my MOST frequently used rooms in the house!

I truly do everything I can to live by this one. It keeps me focused, pushes the negative things that happen to me to the back of my mind, and really puts into perspective what keeps most people from succeeding, achieving and living a life they dream of. I find it pretty powerful.

How often do we focus on the negative things?


  • Can't pay my bills
  • My car won't start
  • Groceries cost too much
  • I need to lose weight
  • I hate my job/lost my job
  • My kids annoy me
  • I want a divorce
  • "The Economy"

Does focusing on those things put you in a good mood? Does focusing on these things HELP you come up with SOLUTIONS? No... in fact, focusing on the negative things will likely keep you getting more of the same. Perhaps you are rolling your eyes right now; that's okay maybe this blog is not for you; maybe it's too positive and you would rather stay swimming in the negative pool. Buh- Bye. However, my hope is that it will make you think, to make you think about what you are THINKING of every day when you wake up. If it does that and this sinks in JUST a little bit, perhaps you can get over that hill you are climbing. That's my goal and I am sticking to it. (By the way, just in case you didn't know when I set goals, I typically achieve them) 

So as I close I ask you this one simple question: 

What kind of thoughts will you allow to overcome your mind and start off your morning, your day, your week?  

Tonight's blog was brought to you by a question asked by my friend Shellie Moravcik. 
It was short and sweet and to the point. I hope you will read my favorite quote over and over again, maybe print it out and hang it in YOUR kitchen or on your mirror, and maybe... just maybe it will change the way you wake up each day.


Oh the THINKS you can THINK if only you try! 
Dr. Seuss

Have a great night!
xoxo
~Shells~









Wednesday, April 10, 2013

HAIR is Your Glory... That's my Story

Hair is your Glory....

Or at least that is what I have heard, and although this had nothing to do with me becoming a stylist, I like to know that I am part of something glorious. However, I am going to share that after 22 years of being a stylist, that not ALL hair is glorious, or beautiful... in fact it can be quite hideous!

What spun this topic?  Let's just say there are certain things that will give you a new outlook on hair.


When I started my career 22 years ago I knew that making people pretty would make them feel good which in turn would give me the warm fuzzies too... it's why I chose to do it. Little did I know that I would come to know my clients "hairy" business in areas other than their head and face. I was fortunate enough to be spared the "not so glorious" parts of hair dressing and grooming for 17 years... good thing because I may have quit if I had been a rookie. But I have a few funny stories to share of course using NO names... my clients are my family and I would NEVER EVER throw them under the bus, even if they would do it to me!

The first "encounter" I had was with a very dear client and friend who had finally gotten back into the dating world after a bad divorce. I was SO happy for her and was a huge part of her overhaul from "soccer mom" to a sassy, fun lady ready to paint the town bright red. It was like being a proud Mom watching her blossom into who she had always been but had fallen into the "mommy role" so much so that she lost who SHE was.
(Happens all of the time)

So... she had gone on several dates with a particular man and thought she may need to clean up her bikini area for a beach trip. She was quite modest and asked me to do it for her. I loved her SO much but SWORE on my eventual grave that I would NEVER ever go "downtown" for grooming duties on ANYONE! Well... lucky for her my grave had not been dug and I caved in... I wanted to help her so badly so I sucked it up and performed my first (and only) bikini wax. It nearly scarred me for life! (Good thing I love that lady even to this day, and we have chuckled about it in hindsight.)

My next realization that hair could be the most hideous thing EVER was when I began doing more men's hair, many of whom had tendrils growing from their ears
like vines; I mean seriously I could have braided some! Although very few would actually ASK me to trim the hair that was growing out of their ears like potatoes; my OCD could  absolutely not let them leave without doing it and they always thanked me; typically saying not even their wives would do it. ICK! I still hate doing it but I would never let you walk around with broccoli in your teeth either so I use mind over matter, and it works.

Next stop? Well, of COURSE I would get a hairy back... like a tremendously hair, scary back. One of my good friends/clients had a new boat and had a "hot date" one beautiful Florida summer weekend. He would not come to the salon and allow the depilatory lady to do it being too embarrassed, (dissect that word for a minute it really explains how you feel) So... I was the lucky duck who was asked to do it in the solitude of my apartment kitchen. He asked me what to bring? I said beer... because I knew it was going to hurt, and it did. In fact, my two oldest daughter's rolled in laughter as he screamed every time I ripped a strip from his back. Poor  guy, I was laughing so hard tears were rolling, but hey... beauty is pain and this was a HARD lesson in that!  I was a good friend/stylist; I iced him down afterwards and rubbed antibiotic cream on his tender bald back so he could be beautiful for his hot boat date. I will never forget the text he sent me saying.. and I quote "my back looks SO sexy in the mirror"  It made me smile knowing I made him feel sexy.

The moral of this story is...
(Yes, of course I can find inspiration in this!)

You never know what you will do to make someone feel good about themselves until you are faced with the problem at hand. It really builds your character when you can put YOUR feelings on the back burner and just think of the other person and what it will do for THEM!

I can say that I have been downtown, in the ears, up the nose, across the back and under the arms and have lived to tell about it; however the day I get asked to take care of a hairy hiney will be the day I retire with dignity!

xoxo
~Shells~
Rock the rest of your week!




Monday, April 8, 2013

Just Another Manic BLOG DAY...

Holy Monday everyone! This day is almost over and I am JUST NOW getting to my "kick off your week" blog. I am so sorry that it's a bit late (Perhaps I need to start writing this on Sunday night?) However it has been a ridiculously busy day, especially after realizing that my mental calendar was an entire week OFF from the ACTUAL calendar! Cripes!  I have a lot to do before the 16th!

 So, what's coming up? Well, I am off to Orlando for Photoshop World on the 16th,
then I fly out of Orlando on the 18th and head to Massachusetts for 10 days! (WOW! That's a long time away from home!) My first mission is some time with family... then it's off to Provincetown, MA for 5 spectacular days  "doing my makeup thing". I am both humbled and honored to have been selected and interviewed to be one of only 20 makeup artists in the country to attend a training with the creme' de' la' creme' of makeup artists and industry leaders in a very intimate exclusive training event. Rubbing elbows and hanging out with the amazing artists responsible for creating the looks on the red carpets of Hollywood is... well, a dream come true! Talk about taking my career to new heights this year!!! But hey, that was my goal and if you know me this is no surprise!

Before I venture away, I have a to-do list a mile long. My oldest daughter will be turning 21 on the 18th  (Why yes, I had her when I was 4) so I have something up my sleeve for that miraculous celebration, I am currently writing a book and have made it a goal to get 3 chapters done this week, I have clients to get into my salon before I go so they won't be looking scraggly when their stylist abandons them for 10 days and somewhere in all of that I still have my daily grind and will need to do my hair so I don't look like a hag! Thank GOD for disposable energy due to good health! WHEW!

I wish you all a great week!
Be good, but be GREAT at it!
(That goes for everything you do by the way)


My inspiration for your week is this....

We can all find excuses of why we CAN'T do something... that's easy and not surprisingly, quite common. Be different, be unique and give yourself reasons why you CAN and SHOULD! You will be amazed at how much time you will find if you make living your dreams a priority. It's not hard... just unusual!

BE UNUSUAL ~BE UNIQUE~ BE AMAZING

XOXO
~SHELLS~

Friday, April 5, 2013

Are You Doing What You Love?

My fingers were tired so this weekend blog is a video blog! Enjoy!

Short and Sweet!

XOXO
~Shells~
video



Monday, April 1, 2013

An April Fool's Joke... WAS NO JOKE

   It was April Fool's day 2009, I was at my newly opened hair studio ready to take on the day. I had not been feeling well for a few days... a bit out of sorts, "perhaps a stomach bug" I thought. I had a 6 month old son, two older daughters at home and a marriage that was falling apart. I had decided to end my marriage and was doing what I had to do to prepare... one of those things was to open my own studio again. I had been managing someone else's salon part time after moving into a different county and needed to make more money because I would no longer have a stay-at-home dad around once I made this move. I had just opened my doors in February and was beginning to feel revived and hopeful that I could do this!

   My husband and I had been "mentally separated" for many months... things had been rocky during my pregnancy with our son and after he was born it progressively got worse. I was barely going through the motions trying get through each day. As the day progressed, my stomach was churning even more and I got the uncanny feeling that this feeling was all too familiar. The thoughts that were running through my head made me tremble in disbelief as I had an overwhelming feeling that although my husband and I had been very distant in the bedroom after the birth of my son, that a day two weeks prior when we had tried to intimately reconnect had perhaps left something to linger. I had a break between clients and I ran to the drugstore. I had tears in my eyes as I grabbed the test off the shelf and walked to the counter with fate in my hand.

   I went back to my studio with just enough time to do the test and see the results and the test came back positive, I was pregnant. I went completely numb and don't recall anything else that day except the moment my husband looked at my pale face when I got home that night. He asked me what was wrong and I presume I blurted it out, I really don't remember. I was devastated and he was elated. WHAT? I thought? How could you be happy, and he thought how could you not?  Our minds in that moment were world's apart just as they were on  many other issues.

   Over the next few months I felt that living as I was living would be my life forever... a mother of 4 in a marriage that I would either accept or simply continue wanting to escape from ; both sounded negative to me. However it was where I had ended up with the choices I had made and it was my job to live with it, like it or not. I subconsciously rejected  the pregnancy; I was simply a vessel with cargo doing my daily duty of carrying the load... this is painful to recall as I look back. Then one day... all of that changed. When I was 5 months pregnant I found out my daughter would be born with Down syndrome. What seemingly could have been news that would devastate me even further, ironically gave me an overwhelming feeling of relief that this was not what I had thought at all. I thought that this pregnancy was a curse... a punishment that would keep me in the unhappy life I was in, but getting the news that she would have Down syndrome instantly made me realize I had been chosen to have this child.... she was a blessing in disguise and although I had no idea how this would all play out, I TRUSTED and BELIEVED in the plan for my future. That day, I rubbed my belly with a smile on my face and a tear in my eye speaking to my baby girl for the very first time...  "We are going to be okay, and I know this now."

   Now every April Fool's day as everyone else is playing silly jokes and fooling people with crazy antics, I smile and get a warm feeling remembering the April Fool's day that my "joke" was NO JOKE... it was in fact the biggest blessing of my life!



Today's moral of the story is that even though you may not know the plan that is ahead of you, just know that EVERYTHING is part of the plan.
xoxo 
~Shells~
(As always... if you love it...share it!)


This hangs on a wall in my house... I have stuff like this ALL over the place. I highly recommend daily reminders like this in plain view all over your home and office in order to stay positive.
It will surprise you how your kids pick up on it too!


Oh... and not being a salesman; it's not my style,...fact is that if you want to hear the rest of this story you can find it in my memoir by clicking here:
"I Need the Happy Ending"