Happy New Year- Choosing to Thrive in 2017

Hellloooo 2017!!

Who is as excited for the new year as me?! Maybe only a few…but I hope not! There were points last year when I was not sure 2017 would ever roll around. While there were highlights from 2016 and I like to count my blessings, it was also a year of lows, struggle and growth. 

For the past couple of years I have chosen a word to live by. Last year, I chose, “Brave.” You may have even noticed that I often wore a gold necklace stamped with the word “Brave.” I wanted to be brave in taking bold risks in my business and personal life. Being brave and in return receiving incredible joy for making that choice. Being brave in not being afraid to fail. All of these I did but I was not aware of how much that word would also play out where I was not expecting it. Being brave when times were hard. Being brave in situations I did not want to be in but had to be. Being brave in trusting that everything would work out. A couple months ago, once life started to slow down, I accidentally lost my brave necklace. While I was upset I lost one of my favorite necklaces, I also took it as a sign that I no longer needed a gentle reminder to be brave because I had been for the past year and I now knew I could be. 

For 2017 I have chosen the word, “Thrive.” I think Travis would say this word is also like, “Winning,” (which he chose because isn’t everything a competition?) but it is not. So many times last year I felt like I was just trying to manage to get everything done and felt like a car running with their low fuel tank light on. This year I want to not just feel like I am surviving the day to day but thriving. I want to find a work/life balance, preferably heavier on the life side. Have more spontaneous trips with Travis. Go on more morning works. No longer be a “Yes Woman.” Serve my ideal client base to the best of my abilities. Take more time to get manicures and massages. Explore my french cooking books. Read just for fun and so much more. 

I know for some 2016 was a great year but no matter if it was a great or not, I challenge each of you to reflect upon the last year and choose a word you would like to shape your year around. This has proven to be more beneficial to me than New Year’s Resolutions, which if we are honest go to the wayside by about week 3. 

To celebrate the new year you will find a FREE January calendar desktop photo and also a phone screen photo. Be on the lookout in your inbox because this year I will be offering freebies every month emailed directly to you. If you are not signed up or have a friend that you know would love getting freebies as well, go to www.katiemichelleralls.com to sign-up for our happy mail delivery. In addition, the Etsy shop will be back open on January 4th so stay tuned!

Whatever stage of life you are in, I wish all of you a happy, healthy and fulfilling New Year. Thank you for being my clients and letting me serve you, while also giving me a creative outlet. 

BIG Hugs,



Source: www.katiemichelleralls.com

Watercolor Wedding Vows

I am a sucker for anything handwritten (go figure). Cards sent to me from friends, old thank you notes, love sticky notes Travis hides in places for me to find, I treasure all of these and have quite a collection of them. I even still have the note cards Travis wrote out to use in case he froze during our proposal, so sweet!

So when we were planning our wedding it was a no brainer that I really wanted to write our own set of vows in addition to the traditional ones we would be saying. I have a weird love of public speaking so I was excited to do this, Travis was not super thrilled about the idea but once again, did it to make me happy. His were obviously way sweeter and lovey than mine (story of our relationship) but we are both so happy we did this. 

I kept the papers that we read off of on our wedding day, mine tear stained from my bridesmaids (thanks ladies) and Travis's from himself. This is really making me sound like I'm heartless and unemotional... I just kept telling myself not to cry and mess-up my makeup for photos. 

I have been trying to think of a fun way to display these in our house for over three years but have not come up with a great idea yet other than a shadow box which I did not want to do. I decided to keep these in Travis and my memory box and transfer the text to beautiful wall art instead.

I love the way these turned out and am currently looking for the perfect place in our house to display them! 

With summer coming up, so will many anniversaries. These would make the perfect anniversary gift. If you are into traditional gifts, paper is for a first year anniversary and cotton (think cotton paper) is for a second year anniversary. Personally I think these would be lovely for any anniversary or as a wedding gift. OR how special would it be to surprise your fiance with a beautiful handwritten marriage proposal *hint, hint, guys*