Who knew photoshoots could be so much fun?

I recently was asked by Tra of Two Twenty Photos to be a model for her upcoming Women Beauty Portrait line. While I was super excited and honored, I was concerned that I had no modeling experience whatsoever! Plus, I’ve watched my fair share of Top Model, so I thought, it can’t be that bad, could it? Well, it wasn’t BAD. But it was certainly hard!!! Modeling looks easy, but it takes some serious skill! wpid-img951606.jpg Yep, that’s me, trying to pose like I know what I’m doing… The crazy thing is, every time I thought I was posing just fine, Tra would make me look in a different direction or place a hand somewhere unexpected or twist my body in a way that I have not been able to twist in a long time. It felt awkward, uncomfortable, and silly at times. But I trusted her and knew she had a vision. wpid-img_4489.jpg Tra shared these photos with me the other day and I was astonished! To finally see through the photographer’s eyes brought everything full circle and I couldn’t be more proud of the results. wpid-img954901.jpg Well, hello, pretty cool looking wall. Don’t mind me, I’m just going to stand here and attempt to look pretty… wpid-img959955.jpg Ok, candid photos officially are THE BEST. Even if my laugh was not entirely natural and I had to tell myself a joke just to get it out. 🙂 🙂 Big thank you to Tra for including me in such an amazing project! The experience was one I will always treasure! Here’s a very sweet note Tra wrote in one of the photos she featured on her Instagram. It touched my heart:

My beautiful friend Sharisse (@piecescalligraphy) to model for my Women Beauty Portrait line yesterday. She wore this short violet dress for her engagement photos 3 or 4 years ago. Now that she had the twins, she was so excited to be able to get into it again. To make it a little extra special, I suggested that we add flowers to her hair. Next thing you know, I’m giving her an up-do. Then the tulle dress came on and all of a sudden, it felt so magical. She looked like a princess.

We were giddy like little girls that got to play dress up. It felt like the ballgown that she didn’t get to wear for her wedding.

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Check out more of Tra’s work and follow her Instagram to see the latest!!! Website: Two Twenty Photos Blog: Two Twenty Photos Blog Photography Instagram: @twotwentyphotos Beauty & boudoir Instagram: @twotwentybeautyboudoir

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And special shoutout to my sweet girlfriend, Johanna, for my celebrity-status hair and make-up! She has been my go-to stylist for so many previous photoshoots as well! Check out our Sacramento photoshoot, San Francisco photoshoot, and maternity photoshoot for more of her amazing work!

What I’ve been up to lately…

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Well, hello there! It’s been a while!

I’ve had a gazillion (yes, that’s a word) things to do, so little coffee. And time.

To those of you who’ve recently inquired or commented about my blog – THANK YOU! Your thoughtfulness and support means the world to me.

So what’s new lately? In no particular order…

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How to get things done when you’re too busy

Often times, I am asked how I do it all.

I work 40+ hours outside of the house, I am a first time mom and also a mom to twin 1.5 year olds, I am a wife, I own a home, and I have a new hobby turned serious passion.

how to be productive

Yes, that is my sink in that photo!!!

The secret?

I DON’T do everything.

Heck, I barely get THREE things checked off my list when I get home from work.

Between the different “hats” I have to wear and the various chores I must juggle, it is quite impossible to get anything more done than just the VERY important stuff.

I don’t have a surefire guide on how to be productive when you are busy with what feels like a million other things in your life.

But I CAN share a few tips that have made my life easier, or at least made me happier!

  1. Change your mindset: You CANNOT do it all. You simply can’t. The sooner you can accept that, the sooner you’ll be happier. You know what you can do? You can be GREAT at the things you decide to do. So long as you don’t worry about the things you could have done.
  2. Set lower expectations: I know, this is contrary to striving to do your best and working hard, and yada yada. But seriously? When you’re a parent, or a home-owner, or a full-time worker… time just FLIES on by. If you want to be happier, don’t write down a list of 10 things you want to do in a day (I still do this sometimes, then I am sad at the end of the day). Instead, write down or tell yourself THREE things that are important to you to get done or at least make some kind of progress on.
  3. Be efficient: When I am at home and leave a room, I ALWAYS take a quick look around to see what I can grab to put back in its place in the room I’m headed to. For example, if I’m leaving the kitchen to go to my bedroom, I’ll grab the sweater I threw on a chair and the bracelet I placed on the table and put them away when I get to my room.
  4. Follow the 5 minute rule: If it can be done in 5 minutes or LESS, do it NOW! Don’t write it down for later, or tell yourself you’ll get to it later. DO IT NOW! It’s so much easier to wash a dish and two utensils than LOADS of dishes at the end of the day.
  5. Also, follow the 15 minute rule: Work in 15-minute increments. See this blog post? Well, duh, you do. Because you’re still reading. I looked at the time and said I’d only write for 15 minutes. No more, no less. Then I’m going to MOVE ON. Yes, I could spend an entire HOUR writing and editing. But instead, I’m choosing to write a GREAT post, not a perfect one, and then I’ll get to do something else right after. If 15 minutes is too short, try half an hour or 45 min. The point is, don’t do a task too long without a break because I find that it just warps my brain or I’ll take too long finishing the task.
  6. Cut yourself some slack: We are always our biggest critics. Give yourself a break and know that you are trying your best and your best really is enough. Step back from the situation, breathe, rejuvenate, refocus. There will ALWAYS be something in your inbox, so don’t forget what is most important in life (family, friends, health, hobbies).

Well there you go! A 15 minute blog post because it has been a LONG TIME since I’ve blogged and I just NEEDED to get something on the page!

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Wondering where I’ve been lately? I’ve been creating!!! Check out my latest obsession with calligraphy, lettering, and all things arts and crafts on my new Instagram account: @piecescalligraphy! I’d love for you to take a peek and follow my journey!

Did I mention I’m giving away a $10 Starbucks card? For free!!! All you have to do is follow my Pieces Calligraphy account on Instagram and tag two friends in a comment! I pick a winner next week on Wednesday, March 4th. 🙂

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Now you tell me!

What’s one tip you find helpful for being productive at home or work? How do you manage your time?

A holiday shindig, mimosas, and an afro

What good are the holidays without spending time with friends, eating food, being merry, and…

Toasting with mimosas?!?!

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I hosted an annual get together with some friends this year, which I named:

The Holly Jolly Shindig.

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Pinterest Inspired: Holiday Decor

It’s never too late for Christmas decor, right? OF COURSE NOT!

Especially not when it’s glittery, gold, silver, metallic, and just plain pretty!

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Just had to share before it’s really too late, you know, like it’s Valentine’s Day or something…  ooo, the wheels just started turning in my head for Valentine’s Day decor…

Read on to have a look at this year’s glitter and metallic holiday decor and SUPER FUN red solo Santa cups!

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