A Short List of Good Things

Pierce Stocking Lookout Point in Traverse City Michigan - The Calm Collective

This week’s short list isn’t all that short, actually. I”m finding a LOT to be grateful for these days, and I owe a lot of it to family. My cousin Julie and her husband and sweet kiddos were in Traverse City this past week which was a total treat, considering they live in Canada and we hardly ever get to see one another — let alone have one-on-one conversations. I soaked up every single minute of hearing about her life, being inspired by her new business and how philanthropic she is, and just filling each other in on what our average days look like. Immediately following Julie’s visit, my mom came into town for a few days which was much needed. We spent a lot of time at the water, grilling out and exploring wineries and breweries, and going on a hike to one of the most beautiful places in Traverse City (more on that below).

I’ve also gotten back into the swing of things with photography which has felt AMAZING. I’m working on a post all about my semi-complicated relationship with this full time job of mine (being a freelance / lifestyle photographer), so stay tuned for that, but all I can say is that taking that leave of absence for a couple of months completely reignited the fire I felt like I had lost, and really helped me to narrow down WHAT and WHO I actually want to photograph, and what I want to do with the knowledge that I have behind building a photography business, staying true to my niche and my style, and how I’ve been able to find and maintain healthy, thriving client relationships. This all leads me to building my very FIRST (and hopefully not the last) workshop that I’ll be holding in Chicago in October. This is targeted towards photographers who are brand new to the industry, or photographers who feel like they’ve lost sight of their vision and can’t quite pin-point what they want to bring to the table.

You can learn more about the photography workshop here and also pre-order your tickets (at sale price), if it’s something you think you’d be interested in. I’d love to have you!


OK, so on to this week’s short list of good things (gratitude!)

Common Good Bakery

Chris told me about this coffee shop recently and it’s AMAZING. Their cold brew is delicious and the spread of homemade breads and pizzas they have will make you drool. It’s pretty tiny, so I’m not sure it’s a place I’ll be frequenting to work from, but when I’m in need of an extra jolt throughout the day or pizza is on my brain, that’s where I’ll be heading for sure. If you’re in town, definitely check it out.

Grilling anything and everything

Lately I’ve been finding any excuse to fire up the grill. We’ve had barbecue chicken, Mexican street corn on the cob, sweet potatoes, greens, ribs, and even grilled some peaches late last week for dessert. Everything tastes better when it’s grilled.

An annual park pass to Pierce Stocking

One of the most beautiful views in Northern Michigan is Pierce Stocking Lookout #9, if you ask me. It’s the picture in this blog post, and it’s breath taking. The dune is so steep that it feels like you’re going to fall for miles and hit the water, but in all actuality, it makes for a VERY difficult hike that can take up to 2 hours to climb back up, and possibly result in having a rescue team to come help you, ha! We decided to just walk the path instead of tackling the dune, but it’s on my list of things to try.

Mid-afternoon naps & bubble baths

Always a favorite, but especially in the summer time. It’s especially ideal if that nap is happening outside in a lawn chair, and is followed by a warm bath and a book.

These earrings from AgJc on Etsy

I can’t get enough of these geometric earrings. They’re incredibly lightweight and go with anything. These come in at a close second. (I have both)

My marigold yoga mat (that I totally manifested)

As you guys know, I did a deep meditation a while back which was targeted towards finding your soul’s color, name and symbol. Mine was a Marigold, Emma and transformed between a sunflower to the sun. I’ve always been drawn to the color, but now more so than ever I find myself gravitating and thinking of it almost always. I had been searching for a yoga mat for a while now, and realized that getting a marigold one would feel really good to practice on, but turns out, they’re super hard to come by. I kept looking online and continued to come up short. Then, my mom wanted to run into TJMaxx when she was visiting last week, and wouldn’t you know it — I stopped over to a mix of yoga mats and there she was — just ONE marigold yoga mat for $15. Boom.

The Year of Less by Cait Flanders

I’m borrowing this book from my friend Erin and I love it so much. It’s beautifully and simply written, incredibly raw and honest, and really puts perspective when it comes to consumerism and being mindful. It’s a super quick read — I started it on Tuesday and am just about to finish it. Perfect for summer.

Westworld on HBO

When Billions ended I was pretty sad, because aside from Handmaid’s Tale, there aren’t any other shows that have my attention. But I kept hearing about Westworld and was told to watch it again and again, so I finally gave it a go when I was visiting Erin a couple of week’s ago. Bottom line: I’m addicted.

Visits from my mom • They’re always the best. She’s so easy to be around, total go with the flow, helpful, funny, and just magnetic. Grateful that we’re just a (decent) car ride away and that I have the flexibility to alter my schedule so we can spend quality time together when she visits.

How I Built That podcast • 

My cousin Julie told me about it during her visit and I CAN’T stop listening to it! It’s so interesting, and I love the vulnerability behind Guy’s questions. As an entrepreneur myself, they’re questions that I’m dying to know, and the answers every single time provide such amazing insight and feedback. So far my favorite episodes have been behind LÄRABAR and Dermalogica. If you’re looking for a new podcast and/or you’re interested in business or flirting with the idea of starting your own, don’t wait another second to subscribe.

Coaching • 

It feels surreal that this is actually becoming a part of my business starting later this month, as I never really saw it coming until one day it just hit me like a truck: “I have to do this”. I cannot wait to start speaking with some truly vulnerable, strong and beautiful women who are looking to live a life with more grounding and purpose, and working to heal themselves from the inside out after losing someone they love. It takes bravery to ask for help — and I’m incredibly honored to be able to provide any and all of the tools that I’ve picked up along the way that have rooted me in my own healing.

If a mindfulness or grief coaching session is something you think you’d like to try or look into further, you can email me at hello@thecalmcollective.com, subject line: COACHING to learn more and receive more information. I’d love to chat with you. x

PS: Etsy Shop Spotlight with Hanselmann Pottery (plus a major discount code!) & Sharing my personal alignment (and how to create your own)


Mindful Memos To Do List by The Calm Collective

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