My 2013 was a wild ride.
My 2014 was a wrecking ball.
My 2015? Was a ball. Period. An absolutely, incredible party that I can’t believe I was allowed to attend. And I don’t say that to sound all lollipops and rainbows… because seriously, everyone has that family member who only talks about how awesome their life is all the time and nobody has time for that cousin Crystal!
I promise, this isn’t me being Crystal. Actually, I wanted to write about 2015 because it was filled with a lot of highs and some low moments but I’m thankful every single part of it.
This year started off with me running my first marathon which in case you’re wondering, was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my whole life! Yes, that’s right. Running 26.2 miles in 92 degree heat without once stopping was harder than giving birth to all three of my babies… and one of those labors lasted 52 hours so believe me when I say that marathon pain is no joke.
2015 also involved the famous bikini post. Which, on one hand was awesome because we got so much press. But if I’m being honest, it was also incredibly overwhelming to have that much attention at once. Life lesson? Becoming momentarily famous for your stretch marks can be a little daunting.
This year I hired new staff at Chic. This year I saw some staff leave. I think any business owner will tell you that both of these transitions can be pretty stressful. We also moved into a bigger office but I won’t complain about that for a second since we have functioning heat and air for the first time. Huzzah!
In 2015 I finally realized why I’ve suffered from serious vertigo for the last two years. The stress of running at a hundred miles an hour meant that any kind of emotional strain made me dizzy and nauseous. Because I’m a workaholic I handled those symptoms by trying to work harder to compensate. Ugh! Thank the good Lord that I finally found a doctor who stopped prescribing pills and took the time to figure out what was going on. I still suffer from it when I push myself too hard but I’ve learned to slow down and breathe and it has dramatically changed my life.
This year I wrote Sweet Girl and saw it published. I also wrote Smart Girl (which comes out in two weeks!) and novella in between. I signed a contract for my first cookbook which is a childhood dream come true and the prettiest thing we’ve ever created at Chic! I can’t wait for y’all to see it!
This year we launched our first clothing collaboration which was awesome, and fun and fancy! Y’all have inundated us with requests for different products you’d love to see and I promise we’ve got some epic things coming to The Chic Shop this year.
This year we also launched our first two #ChicShowsUp campaigns. With your help we were able to send 1,000 pounds of clothing and toiletries to Syrian refugee camps. We also hosted our first ever live event at Chic HQ. With the help of partners like Pier One, Boxed, Lundberg Farms and forty Chic readers, plus the Chic staff and our families, we created fifty beautiful holiday dinners for families transitioning out of homelessness. That day will forever be the most special I’ve ever had as a business owner and I can’t wait to meet more of you at upcoming events!
This year has had so many awesome things but it’s also been filled with a lot of tears and struggles and stress and raising babies and slogging through our adoption journey, sickness, laughter, business travel, fear, doubt, dreaming, hoping, praying… and in every single one of those things, I’ve learned something. I am so grateful for 2015 and it’s lessons most of all. Those lessons mean that in 2016 I will relax more, I will embrace all the things in my life– even the hard stuff, even the things scare me –I will create more and work less, I will remember that one small deed done for others is better than the greatest of intentions, and I will not (likely) put pictures of my stretch marks up on the internet anymore.