Wow did I let this blog die. This fall sort of chewed me up and spit me out. I am feeling a huge need to go escape to a little cabin in the woods for a week to read books, go for walks and just chill. With no work. But of course I am still knee deep in editing, the kids are still busy (I swear something is on the calendar every single day) and Christmas is coming like a speeding train. So because I want to be doing anything but work I edit a little, get super bored and internet shop. Every year I swear we’re not going to spend a lot on gifts and then every year I get so tired of editing that I shop online like it’s my job. Seriously, I think I have gifts for everyone on our list but our list is totally out of control because I LOVE giving gifts. It just adds up you know?  Anyway, I let the blog die because something had to give for a while. What stinks is that this happens every year and even though I’ve been super busy this fall I know my DEAD AS A DOORNAIL season is already upon us so I should have been posting to keep my Google stats up. I have a post-it note on my computer that says “work smarter” and yet after over 7 years doing this job I still can’t seem to do that during the fall rush.

I went to church last night by myself and it was amazing. Sometimes it’s nice to leave the family at home and sit alone at church. I hear things I think I might normally miss. Last night our pastor started an Advent sermon series called “B List Christmas” and it’s all about the people that surrounded the Christmas story but weren’t the stars. The people in the wings if you will. Last night he talked about Zechariah and Elizabeth. And from their story he talked about Mary and how this teenager so calmly accepted what the angel told her (that she was going to have a virgin birth) but the priest (Zechariah) had trouble accepting what the angle told him (that his wife was going to have a baby – John the Baptist). He went on to mention that Mary and her relative, Elizabeth, who was very old, were pregnant at the same time – both with sons that would someday do amazing things. And that’s where the B List part came in… that as a B Lister your life might not be in the spot light but you never know who your life with effect or how it will effect them. Parents especially. As a parent you are teaching your children so many things all the time and you just never know what/who they will become or how your influence helped shape them (for better or worse I guess).

I’m not doing the sermon justice… HERE it is if you want to hear it. (I heard the one from Chris Abel but I’m sure they are all good)

What I left thinking about is not only how can I be a B List to someones life… meaning how can I be a blessing for someone else or be a positive person on the sidelines of someone’s life – but also who are those people for me. It brought up some struggles I have in certain relationships that i know need to be fixed but it also left me feeling so incredibly grateful for my own B List crew.

Of course there are my parents and in-laws, our siblings, friends and neighbors. We are super blessed to have an awesome community of love and support to raise our family in. But specifically I want to mention the people that make Fresh Art work.

You guys see the photos. The sneak peeks. You see the part of this business that I take care of because it’s the part that’s visible. It’s the photos. But there are SO many things you don’t see! And after a weekend spent with family where I was constantly feelings grateful for our parents, good meals, amazing friends, the best neighborhood ever and my sweet nieces who got to hang out here with us I wanted to take just a minute to thank a few people and let them know just how grateful I am to have them on this journey with me.

Mary Price is the owner of Finch Vintage Rentals and has become a dear friend. I am so grateful for her friendship but also because she texts me things like this: “Hey – let’s grab lunch soon to talk about how we’re going to make oodles of money together in 2015!” HA! So we got to have a fun lunch together recently and brain storm new ideas to try out this year. You guys, having someone share your passion for photography, new ideas, growing your business and finding new ways to bring in income is just more than amazing. I love having such a talented friend who is as excited about her small business as I am about mine but will also admit when she’s totally burnt out (I can only have real friends that admit to the REAL junk!)! Brain storming ideas with her is one of my favorite things. I am so blessed to have her in my life.

Kim Weiss is one of my very best friends. She started Fresh Art with me in 2009 and I swear I still don’t make a decision around here without running the idea by her first! She’s my go-to person. Fresh Art literally wouldn’t exist without her and I am forever in her debt for that. She is the kind of person that makes you feel so lucky to be able to call them a friend. She’s a good one. The best. Literally. I can’t imagine life without her now and luckily I don’t have to because she’s stuck with me!

Tricia Copeland is another very good friend and here at Fresh Art she’s in charge of all things money. And you guys, I suck at money. I mean I’m REALLY bad. I’m a natural spender and also a natural giver which is a lethal combo. I suck at writing things down, keeping track and saving. Luckily for me Tricia takes care of so much around here I don’t worry too much! I mean, Chris and I are finally starting to really tackle our personal finances but even there Tricia has a hand. She is talented at all things I’m terrible at in life. I honestly don’t think we could be more opposite and I love her for that. She’s the ying to my yang! Besides being the most loyal friend around, someone that’s incredibly easy to talk to, trustworthy and kind she is also the most non-judgmental person you will ever meet. She looks at our numbers – especially after I’ve been online shopping like it’s my job – and never judges. Or if she does judge she keeps it to herself! She never makes me feel bad or stupid and keeps answering all of my inane questions. I couldn’t run this business without her brain OR her heart!

And then there’s Amy Beachy. I saved her for last because lately I have been feeling constantly grateful for her. I hate to call her my assistant because she does so much more around here than that so I think we call her the studio manager maybe? I should just put “CANNOTLIVEWITHOUTHER” behind her name because that’s basically how I feel! Like Tricia, she is irreplaceable. She is everything I’m not. My messy desk drives her crazy, when I get HER desk messy she wants to kill me, she takes care of the things I forget about or hate to do and she does it all with grace. She gives me grace everyday. I’m not a good boss – I never learned how to manage a business or anything so I know I make a ton of mistakes but she always is there to forgive and offer me grace. She makes me laugh – and that is a treasure to me because I love all of my friends but the ones that make me laugh I hold dear. I dream of a day when Fresh Art is so big Amy and I are working in a big studio every day together but for now I so appreciate every little (and big) thing she does to help keep Fresh Art running from her desk in my cold basement!

You guys, I want to live a B List life. I want to be on the fringe as a blessing to people like so many are for me. I wish I could remember to not be so self-centered and do something every single day to bless someone’s life. It’s definitely something I’m going to start working on today.

As I type this my mom just delivered me and my three not-feeling-well kids dinner! All three got sent home from school sick today and Chris has a soccer banquet tonight and of course I’m drowning in work (I get into hermit-mode and wish my family would vanish for a few days so I could get pizza delivered and never leave my desk until my to do list is all crossed out so I think my mom was afraid I’d forget to feed my kids! I’m kidding – I would have fed them something i’m sure!) so she brought us a home cooked meal! THAT is living a B List life. Such a blessing this dinner is and so funny I’m being loved on like this as I write about how I want to do this exact thing for more people.

The blog is up and running again – not that many read it anymore – so get ready for a ton of sneak peeks and random family photos or rambling posts from me coming soon! I’m slowly coming out of the Sept-Nov fog I’ve been lost in and can’t wait to share some of what we’ve been up to!

Love to you friends. Happy Monday!