So I think most of us can agree with the following statement: none of us are as cool in person as we are on social media.  There is this horrible lie circulating that says (in the voice of that awful Professor Umbridge from Harry Potter), “In order to have a successful social media following, your posts and your photos MUST be perfect.”  How many times have you found yourself scrolling through your pictures to find THE perfect one? The photo that you think will get you the most likes?  The photo that is most aesthetically pleasing? The photo that looks the least like your every day life…Or have you ever deleted a post because it didn’t get enough “likes”?

I have done all of the above.

***SPOILER ALERT***

People like real.  People appreciate the raw and the honest.  People connect with messy, flawed, and imperfect, because that’s what life is: an imperfectly beautiful, chaotically flawed mess.  We live in a world so obsessed with beauty and perfection, that we are starting to forget what ‘real’ looks like.  We begin to self-deteriorate because we get caught in the comparison game, comparing our behind-the-scenes to everyone else’s highlight reels.

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Y’all, I tell people that every single day.

We try so hard to get the perfect picture for instagram, to make people think we are living this perfect, Kardashian life.  You know what? We end up losing the opportunity to live in the beauty of the moment.

Every day, before I push ‘post’, I hesitate.  I am like,

“Is this TMI?”

“Is this too real?”

“Am I going to lose followers if I post this?”

“What if my post isn’t relatable?”

“Is this too unladylike?”

“Are my friends going to judge me?”

Well, I will tell you that my funny, embarrassing female problems, all-too-true, mom-fail posts are also my most ‘liked’ posts.  Putting myself out there and telling truths that we feel like we have to keep hidden behind closed doors, is what is connecting me to, and building relationships with, my followers: YOU.

There is something about raw, vulnerability that people appreciate, and it’s a breath of fresh air from the stuffy cloud of perfection that is constantly looming over our heads.  It’s nice to know that someone else other than you hasn’t showered for a week, or that you aren’t the only one who has eaten an entire box of Thin Mints in one sitting, or that I am not the only one who looks like Paul Bunyan when they wear a plaid flannel button down.

I lose followers every. damn. day.

I am also 99.9% sure that there are people who judge me after some of my posts ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ But, at the end of the day, maybe I am not meant to connect with those people and those people aren’t meant to connect with me.  However, the people I do connect with are AMAZING, and REAL in the most perfectly imperfect way, and I appreciate that.

I appreciate YOU.

Even though I feel like this has turned into a huge pile of word vomit I am still going to click “Publish” because if I didn’t, it would defeat the entire purpose of this post.  I hope this helps anyone who feels vulnerable when they post on social media, or if you are someone who has stretched themselves thin trying to reach this unattainable goal of perfection, maybe this post will bring you a little bit of peace.  Opening up and sharing all of my life’s imperfections has given me the opportunity to grow as a person, to grow as a business, and to create friendships both on and offline.  So, KEEP IT REAL, BRO,  and watch everything around you, including yourself, begin to flourish.

***DISCLAIMER*** Don’t let the word explicit freak you out.  It is only to give you a heads up that there are a few curse words thrown in here, because I am who I am and I cuss a little (okay, FINE, a lot), but I still love Jesus and He loves me and my sailor mouth, too. 

Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day!!!  The one holiday that is loved by many, and despised by more!  For my friends who are anti-valentine’s day, and find themselves feeling low, I have written out some self-care tips to help you feel better!  Actually, this pertains to erryyyyybody. So, please continue to read, even if you are pro-valentine’s day and happy.

Let’s start with the basics.  Think about how you feel when you do these items vs. how you feel when you don’t.

BRUSH YO’ TEEF.  This seems simple.  And I feel like this pertains more to mom’s raising little ones, But don’t even act like there are days that have gone by where you haven’t brushed your teeth.  We feel super ugh when we run our tongue across our teeth and realize they are wearing sweaters.  When I brush my teeth first thing in the AM, I am more motivated the entire day!  I end up completing tasks that I have been putting off for a week!

Make your bed.  When I don’t make my bed, my mood is off.  I feel slovenly.  It takes TWO seconds.  Throw your comforter up, fluff your pillows, and you will feel like a million bucks.  If you accomplish nothing else that day, make your bed. Here is an entire article on why you should make your bed everyday.  This is one piece of advice I truly believe in.

Laugh. Have you laughed today??  Watch a video of babies laughing, or dogs farting, or husbands pranking their wives!  Whatever it takes.  Actually, I suggest this clip from Bruce Almighty.  It never gets old.

Hug.  We need at least one GOOD hug a day.  It doesn’t matter if it’s from your dog, your husband, your wife, your neighbor, or the person standing next to you on the elevator.  Okay, maybe don’t hug them, but get and give a hug.

Cry.  Watch a sappy movie! UNLEASH THE SAD SHE-BEAST WITHIN.  This scene from Homeward Bound will usually always do the trick.  Hands down, the best movie ending of my childhood.

Exercise.  Go for a jog, lift some weights, get outside.  One thing I have noticed as a first time mom, if I don’t get outside, I get depressed.  Fresh air is SO good for our wellbeing.  It can be super easy to get stuck inside caring for your little one(s).  I always notice a huge difference in my mood the days where I get outside vs. if I don’t.  If it is raining, go for a walk with my girl, Leslie.

Have a cup of HOT coffee.  WE DESERVE AN ENTIRE MUG OF HOT COFFEE.  How many times have we had to drop what we were doing before we got halfway through our mug of hot coffee?  For real, y’all.  I wake up early for the purpose of making sure I get to drink an entire cup of coffee, HOT.

Take a shower.  When is the last time you showered?  Today? (you go, glen coco) Yesterday? Three days ago?

DO YOU EVEN KNOW, BRO?

Showering is one of those oxymorons of life.  You hate the idea of it.  It is such a task.  You have to take off your clothes, take your hair out of your greasy ass top knot, adjust the water temperature, shave (who are we kidding), then when we get out of the shower, we have to lotion, detangle, blow dry (on a good day), straighten or curl (rarer than a unicorn pooping diamonds).  BUT once we are in, we don’t want to get out of the fiery, wetness we have neglected for so long.

Take a nap.  Who am I kidding? It’s either/or y’all: a shower or a nap.

Listen to music.  Pull out your old CD’s, or open up your ’90’s playlist, and rock. the. eff. out.  INSTANT mood booster.  SHOOP is my favorite go-to mood-boosting song.  Did you know Salt ‘n’ Pepa has a third member?!  IKR??  Gosh…what’s her name…wait. I remember!!! It’s ME when that song comes on.

Get shit off of your chest.  Whether it’s in a group text, or a journal.  I always warn the girls in my GroupMe, “y’all, petty Betty is about to make an appearance.” Then, I let Betty spew her verbal diarrhea.  Sometimes, I just need someone to agree with me that my husband is the freaking spawn of satan for never doing the dishes.  But, in all seriousness, I love my husband and am super thankful for him.  I am glad he is in my life for me to complain about him never doing the dishes ;).

Stop expecting things.  When you expect things, you open yourself up to disappointment.  Do things without expecting something done for you in return.

Declutter.  Your closet.  Get rid of that huge pile of shirts you literally haven’t touched in 5 years that take up space.  Give them to those in need.  Memories last forever.  So take one last look, take a freaking picture if you have to, and throw it in a donation bag.  ORRRRR spend $200 on a t-shirt quilt! Your office.  Go out and grab some folders, dividers, paper clips, and binder clips.  Organize your documents!  Throw away the trash and bajillion crinkled up receipts you had every intention of saving for tax time but will just end up checking your bank statement instead.  Your life.  Get rid of what/who is causing you anxiety.

Give the freakin’ BOOT to people and things who make you feel less than!

We aren’t getting any younger and ain’t nobody got time for shitty things or shitty people.  YOU. ARE. FABULOUS.

Get in some adult interaction.  FaceTime if you need to!  I actually had one of my friends say to me the other day, “Erinn. You need adult interaction.”  That was a low point for me lol ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ but not as low as when my iPhone X Face ID couldn’t recognize my double chins.

Exercise your brain. Y’all.  if you put your ear up to mine and knocked on my forehead, you would actually hear the wisp of twenty thousand cobwebs.  because motherhood.  Work a crossword puzzle! Or an actual puzzle!  Sudoko puzzles, solitaire, trivia, read a BOOK, or listen to a podcast!

LAST, but most important:

TREAT YO’ SELF.  Buy yourself chocolate.  Get you some fancy jewelry.  Go get a massage, or a mani/pedi!  Make some cookie dough and eat it straight from the bowl.  Buy yourself some flowers!  Go to Sephora and get some new makeup.  Take yourself to the movies! Treat yourself like you would want to be treated by a significant other.   Love the unlovable parts of yourself.  Love the parts you criticize every day.  You wouldn’t say those things to your friends, so why should you say them to yourself?  Treat yourself like the queen you are because:

 

 

 

So yesterday I taught my very first hand lettering class!  The lovely ladies of Kendra Scott – Lexington invited me to their store to host a Brunch + Lettering class!  They provided light bites and mimosas (yurrrrr) and we got 15% off of jewelry!  Plain Jane here got two pairs of earrings and I am basically Beyoncé over here.

Teaching anything for the first time is a little nerve-wracking, but the KS girls and my attendees made it SO much fun and super relaxing!

I taught a crash course on faux calligraphy, which they then used to letter sweet sentiments on cards for their Val/Galentine!

Super Cute Welcome Sign!

My Rockstar Letters (minus a couple who had to leave)

Behind the Scenes

 

If you are interested in having me teach a crash course at your business or store, contact me!  I LOVE teaching how to letter, because I firmly believe everyone can.

Click here to download my free Faux Calligraphy practice printables used in the class!

YOU GUYS.  I am feeling super official right now because I just completed my media kit.

Confession:

I  just learned what a media kit was yesterday ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ .

BUT I need one.  It is basically a blogger’s resume.  I have never really considered myself a blogger before…but I guess I am since I am sitting here writing this post that all of two people will probably read.  I am really proud of it, though.  Creating and updating a resume always makes me feel very accomplished, because it makes me reflect back on all of my projects, the time and effort put into the projects, and the happy customers who receive those projects!

Why Are Media Kit’s Important?

If you want to work with brands or sponsors, you need a media kit.  Your media kit is what makes you different from the rest of the bloggers, and is your chance to SHINE to brands you are looking to partner with.  It is a great (and easy) way to get your blog information out there when brands request information about your business.

Let’s check it out, shall we?

Tra-la!!!!  <insert confetti, balloons, noisemakers and me bowing to my invisible, chanting crowd>

So creating my media kit made me realize several things:

  1. I am super blessed to be doing what I love as a business.
  2. My twitter and Pinterest following is super sad.
  3. I hate twitter.  Okay…hate is a strong word. I  despise Twitter. My last tweet was months ago, to Little Debbie, because they threatened to get rid of Christmas Tree cakes.  RIGHT.  Da. Fuq.  They didn’t, though.  And, let’s be honest, it was probably because of my tweet ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.  I don’t know why I despise Twitter, either.  I have tried to verbalize it, but I can’t.  So, sorry for despising you for no reason, Twitter.
  4. HOLY BOUNCE RATE.  What. the. what.  Okay, so I am not gonna sit here any act like I knew what a bounce rate was when I was working on this.  I totally had to google it.  Spark note version: a high bounce rate means people are looking at my first page and then leaving my site because they think its BORING.

WOMP.  

So my next task: make my first page more intriguing.

As my media kit says, if you want to collaborate, hit me up!  I love collabs and making new friends in the process.

It’s almost Valentine’s Day here in the bluegrass!  and everywhere else I guess, too.  Shopping for Valentine’s Day can be uber stressful.  Every store looks like it’s been covered in pink puke, and the options are endless, which means decision-making, and let’s be honest…that skillset doesn’t exist for me.

I am the WORST at making decisions.  The “I don’t know, what do you want to eat?” meme is my life.  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ I am who I am.

so LET ME HELP YOU.

I have the perfect gift for your valentine.  Catch: they have to like pink.  Annnnnd the state of Kentucky.

Yep. There it is.  How stinking cute is that??  A Kentucky made of pink hearts!!  Yes, I am totally tooting my own horn, but only because it took me forever to draw and digitize each heart.  Therefore, bragging rights were earned.  Oh, and check out the other side.
Cute, right??
For more gift ideas, check out my friend Holly’s post over at Blissful Bluegrass.  She has a great gift guide for the ladies (I literally want them all) and an amazing guide for the gentlemen!
And to my ladies flying solo this year, this is for you: