slow down

Slow down.

I keep hearing it over and over and over again.

Slow down.

2014 has been a whirlwind. Already. It's January 20th and I've been in over my head since this year started.

I have to remind myself to breathe most of these days.

Literally. Like, "Kelly - BREATHE!" In through your nose, out through your mouth.

I'll be driving and will forget. My body will stop doing it automatically for me. It'll occur to me, "Hey, I haven't breathed in like forty-five seconds." Or a minute. Or a couple of minutes. And I'll have to take a forced inhalation, exhalation. Do some mini pranayama breathing, hot yoga-style. The breath is audible... as you listen to it, you're more likely to focus on it and remain present. Resist the urge to allow your mind to wander out of these four walls.

Ever since that ball dropped and Drew kissed me at the stroke of midnight, I've been running a marathon of life and work. Laura's wedding. EB show. TSE. Teach yoga. Secure an office. Mollify new clients. Meet new clients. Offer and start an internship over the course of one week.

Would you like to know how many days I have had in 2014 to not think about work, do something work related, or actually work? Zero.

That's not exactly setting boundaries.
That's not exactly doing my job well.
That's not actually serving my clients well.
That's certainly not serving God or my husband well.

I am stressed. I am anxious. Whenever I get in these stressful situations I always have trouble breathing. My body goes into fight-or-flight mode and stops doing normal things like breathing subconsciously. It's so focused on preparing to fight the cheetah or swim hundreds of feet against a strong water current (because I obviously need to, since duh, why else would I be sending all those stress signals to my brain?) that it can't do normal things anymore. It makes me incapable of taking deep breaths (just short and shallow forced ones). I get absolutely single-sighted and 1,000% focused on "just get through this and this and this and this and this."

I haven't said no to the things that don't matter this year.

Even to things or people or opportunities that aren't a great fit. Or don't really work with my schedule.

YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES I WILL DO EVERYTHING AND THEN SOME, THANK YOU PLEASE GIVE ME MORE!

I know better. I know that in order to be the best wedding planner, the best wife, the best friend, the best person I can be, I have to give my time wisely to what I can, and not to what I can't.

So I am going to intentionally slow down. It's January 20th. 11 more days left of the first month of the year. I have a couple of hard deadlines to hit and inevitable scheduling blocks in the way, but I am going to take a little more time to breathe. To rest. To be a wife. To decompress. To distance myself from electronics and time-consuming projects. To start going back to yoga.

today earlier in the brand new KDE HQ!

today earlier in the brand new KDE HQ!

There are so many exciting things coming up in the world of KDE. For example, that aforementioned office. Yeah, did you get that? I HAVE AN OFFICE! THERE IS A KELLY DELLINGER EVENTS HEADQUARTERS! A physical space of everything KDE loveliness!!!!!! I have been stressing myself out night and day over every last detail of that place without ever appreciating the fact that I HAVE it, so I'm finally going to take a step back and acknowledge the amazing reality that it exists. PRAISE GOD!!!!


 

God is so good. So, so good. His blessings abound. He's been so good to put the right people in my life lately to give me hugs, encouragement, and reality checks. I'm so grateful to have an amazing intern, a supportive family, and so many insanely awesome opportunities.

Stay tuned for more fabulousness in the weeks to come! And a little more quiet time, too. 

Ain't in no hurry 
I'd be a fool now to worry 
About all those things I can't change 
And the time that I borrow 
Can wait till tomorrow 
Cause I ain't in no hurry today

(Brown, Durrette, and Otto)

love, light, and calm,

KD

office musings

Growing up and in college, I was never really one to use a desk. My college dorm desks were usually demoted to "vanity" or "food preparing" status, and I'd do all my homework from bistro tables in the lobby or on park benches outside. Whenever I started working from home, I dreamed of having a beautiful space to create lovely things from -- but still couldn't manage to get past the kitchen table or my couch. When Drew and I got married and moved into our new apartment, we initially deemed the upstairs loft as our study/leisure/guest bedroom/music room. (A little confusing, right?) After a few months, we realized that we were never using the upstairs -- Drew occasionally would study or turn in online assignments (finishing up his CPA requirements), but for the vast majority, it was completely wasted space. 

In the meanwhile, our downstairs living room somehow morphed into a full work station for me. Craft projects seemed to have exploded all over the kitchen table, all room for walking was taken up by a tablescape mock-up for at least two weeks, and all of my office-specific supplies and things were piled dangerously high on a very small desk. Unused. Not productive. No bueno.

Handsome huz drilling!

Handsome huz drilling!

It was obvious to both of us that I needed a real work area. So after some heavy lifting and arranging, a lot of drilling and hanging and organizing and a November trip to ikea -- I HAVE AN OFFICE! It's beautiful and I'm obsessed with it and as soon as it's officially "finished" I should probably have an office party or something -- it's that awesome.

My wedding cake toppers made their reappearance after a seven-month hiatus!

My wedding cake toppers made their reappearance after a seven-month hiatus!

Pinterest and Hey Gorgeous Events' "girl cave" inspired a lot of the conceptual/organizational ideas I've implemented. And of course my fascination with all things Lilly Pulitzer has popped up pretty much everywhere (from boxes of animal crackers to all my delightful "May Flowers" office supplies) with a healthy dose of vintage Barbie. I can't wait to show you it all finished and pretty!!!

Whisky-approved desk area!

Whisky-approved desk area!

Stay tuned for further progress!

musings on my ideal day

I've struggled a bit with thinking up and living my ideal day. It's hard for me to put to words exactly how I'd like to spend my days, and things rarely ever seem to go exactly how I'd want them to. Especially with my event planner schedule (SPORADIC!), two days are never identical. I could be writing blog posts for the week ahead, running errands for styled shoots, emailing vendors about events, tweaking elements of my website, planning for the future, going through business finances or legal documents, executing events, or meeting with potential clients. Even my workday can vary -- my set office hours are Monday - Thursday 9AM - 4PM (weekends reserved for event dates or precious family time), but rarely do I completely adhere to these.

Some days I would say things were as ideal as I could have them -- productive work hours, getting important things done, running vital errands, having difficult but necessary conversations. There are certain elements that definitely characterize a day as "ideal" (exercising -- particularly through hot yoga, eating healthy meals, taking walks, staying on task and focused, not sleeping in, etc). But defining a specific blueprint is HARD for me.

Sparkly things, pretty fabrics, gorgeous colors and textures, fresh flowers, emotional moments, animals, glamour, windows open, and candlelight are a few things that bring me joy. I can always wear a sparkly necklace, work on a lovely project that requires some sewing and construction, keep fresh flowers in the house, admire my pets, open windows, dress up and light candles... those are easy ways to make my life more "fired up" in the moment. 

Other things I might incorporate in my "ideal" day (while I'm trying to define exactly what it is)....

  • exercise, feeling ALIVE {hot yoga, dance class, going for walks, yoga with Drew, running, etc}
  • keeping a tidy home {cleaning up after my messes, staying more attuned to how things ACTUALLY are -- since I tend to live in my head and miss what's actually in front of me!}
  • maintaining a beautiful workspace {organizing things to functional usage, keeping inspirational photos or books or whatever at hand, taking care to surround myself with pretty things & collateral}
  • dressing up & looking presentable even when I'm home alone {swiping on some mascara and blush can do wonders for my motivation, and donning a pretty, professional-looking outfit not only looks good for video blogging, but makes me more productive!}
  • eating healthy, life-giving foods {natural, fresh, delicious foods give me more energy than sloppy, carb-rich junk}
  • reading books about faith {relationship, self-improvement, or just general informative spiritual books always lighten my load and remind me how to live!}
  • praying!!!!!!!!! {God is so good and faithful -- but we have to ask for the desires of our hearts and stay in tune with His vision!}
  • going outside for fresh air {does so much for the spirit!}
  • cuddling my cats {little pick-me-ups}
  • giving my husband my undivided attention when he's home {does so much for our relationship!}
  • making time for home-tending {ultimately, my first priority is to be a good and Godly wife, as well as the manager and "tender" of our household. I'm not as satisfied or happy when our house looks like a disaster and there's a mile-long to do list hovering over Drew & me. ...Not to mention he's not happy either.}
  • preparing for success {so much of action is in the groundwork laid before you take the action. I'm more likely to go work out if my clothes are laid out, my water bottle is filled, and my yoga mat or tennis shoes are by the door. Drew's more likely to get to work on time if we've ironed his shirt the night before, set out food for lunch, and gotten his things together in advance. I do better in client consultations when I've got everything I could possibly need with me, at the ready.}
  • making time to dream, to visualize, to think up amazing things {I LOVE working on creative projects, exercising my skill sets and honing new ones, and dreaming -- it fuels my creativity like none other, gives me something to work towards, challenges me to bring things to life, and makes my work better!}
  • cooking & learning new domestic skills {this goes hand-in-hand with home-tending, but creativity is ALSO fueled when I'm learning new things, exercising my imagination in new realms, and both Drew and I get to benefit from the end result in these endeavors! Be it learning how to sew Euro shams (something I've needed to tackle for months!), hang shelves, or roast a whole chicken (which I mastered for the second time last night -- woot woot!)... these things also challenge me and make me a better person all-around!}

I feel like that's a pretty good groundwork. It may not be a set schedule, detailed down to the very minute... but it does give me some ways to measure how my days are on the ideal-o-meter!!! What things do you want to incorporate into your life to make it ideal? Post in the comments below! :)