I can’t believe the weekend that the Chic Team and I dreamed of for so long actually happened. So many of you have been asking for a RISE recap. Honestly, I had to take a minute to let it all sink in, that’s how special it was. First of all, watch that video above for the best recap ever!

RISE x ATX took place on June 9th and 10th in Austin. Women from all over the world gave up time and money, found babysitters and booked flights to come and hang out with us and since we’d never hosted this event before, none of them truly knew what they were in for. 

The official #RISEWKND kicked off with an intro cocktail hour that allowed all of the Chic Tribe members to get to know each other over wine and a queso bar. I mean, at the first the hotel tried to get me to choose some fancy appetizers for that party but I was like, “Nah, we like melted cheese, thank you.”

Then our M.C. extraordinaire Brittany Barron (who also happens to be one of my best friends) took to the stage and basically made ourselves (and the audience) laugh until our sides hurt. Next we brought up speaker, author and all around rock star, Jen Hatmaker for a panel discussion. We talked about everything from friendships to parenting to marriage to career. My intention for this first night was that I wanted guests to feel like they were hanging out on my front porch for some wine and a chat. Afterwards we all (and yes, I mean all 250 of us!) headed to the hotel bar for drinks and book signings and fun.

I’ll be honest, day-two of Rise Austin was one of the greatest days of my whole life. It started early morning with a “Moms + Coffee” event where I spent an hour with the mamas in attendance. We talked about the good, bad and ugly of parenting.  Afterwards I went back to my hotel room to get ready, and then we prayed.

I want you to know that we prayed over you each person attending the event that day. I want you to know that every member of the Chic staff worked so hard to make this event special and beautiful and intentional. I want you to know that we planned and dreamed for nine months and then when the morning finally arrived, I want you to know that ten people –some of which aren’t even religious– stood in a room and prayed over the attendees time with us. We prayed that each woman would feel known and seen and encouraged. I hope that they all felt our hearts and prayers for in every single moment we were together.

When it finally came time for me to speak on the main stage I gave a keynote I  had been writing and practicing for months. We discussed facing our fears, unpacking past trauma and how powerful you are right now, at this very moment. 

Later, Alison Faulkner made us laugh and cheer and dance our hearts out. She taught us incredible lessons about how to achieve something great and humbled us all with deeply personal stories.

I mean, she also taught us some super sweet dance moves. Clearly.

Next my friend Jessica Honnegger of Noonday Collection talked to us about the power of “and” and living into true sisterhood. And I know this isn’t the point, but she also had on the cutest freaking outfit ever!

Wait… Have I mentioned the AMAZING cookie break yet? Epic. Or the panel discussion with all the ladies? Or the incredible spoken word poetry from Arielle Estoria? Day two you guys… day two was some kind of magic. And then we danced!

How else do you cap off a weekend of learning, growth, understanding, joy, and female-fellowship? DANCE PARTY, that’s how! We got 24K Gold ready for a dance party with beats provided by our awesome DJ Ahsohn. 

You guys, can I just tell you something? The Chic Tribe knows how to move! 250 packed the dance floor in their finest gold ensembles and blew my ever-loving mind with their sweet, sweet dance moves. We sang at the top of our lungs to songs like Dancing Queen and Livin’ On a Prayer (see photo of me above!) and worked it out to old school hip hop and new school Beyonce.

I can’t begin to tell you what the weekend did for us as women. For years I’ve dreamed of cultivating a space where women from every walk of life can come together to be inspired, supported and enveloped in community.

It honestly felt bigger than a weekend. Rise is a movement. One that The Chic Tribe will carry on. We can be who we are and continue to grow with grace, love, and hard work. We’re here to share that love with others and spread that message accordingly. We are here to RISE. We can’t wait to see you in 2018 in Los Angeles. Make sure you’re signed up for our email so you’ll be the first to here details.