Monday, January 25, 2016

Top 16 - What I am excited about!

Hello blog world! We are continuing our series of the Top 16 things we are most excited for in 2016. I, Dana, am going to chat today about what I am looking forward to professionally and personally in 2016! I know you are so stoked. You should be, it's going to be a good one.

Let's start with what I am personally excited for. This year I will turn 32. 32!! I wasn't sure how I would feel when I turned 30. It was slightly uneventful and nothing too earth shattering. But what surprised me was turning 31. I was officially IN my thirties. It was an odd feeling. I am looking forward to 32 with a whole new approach. I have never felt more sure, confident, and happy as I do right now. I love that I know who I am, what I want to be, and what friendship truly looks like. I don't do the drama, I don't feel the need to belittle someone else to make myself feel better. In a world that is the wedding industry - that is worth its weight in gold. I am genuinely happy for colleagues who pull off an amazing wedding or shoot. I don't need to be competitive, I want to be supportive. It is a whole new realization that just hit me some time last year as I was working nose to the grind stone and forgetting to look up. There is a genuine happiness that comes from just being grateful. It is liberating.

We are *thinking* of expanding our own personal house. Crazy?!?! Yes it is. When we started the project, all along we wanted our little cottages to be a place that could be rented out to brides and their families. We are seeing that it is just not what they want (right now anyways). Our cottages are too big, and would take years and years to make it financially worth renting out. So, Plan 13,532 since we started this thing: Expand our houses (pending the county approval, septic expansion, power line moving, and plumbing abilities) and try to purchase land next door to build much smaller and eco-friendly cottages when we feel like it is necessary. Personally - this is exciting. I have already spent hours drafting up a new floor plan - just to get us started with an architect.

The black lines are the existing house - red lines are the new plans
As you can see - we are adding on about 1200 square feet. It would leave us with about 2100 square feet in the end. I really love the plan and am so excited to get this bad boy started! 2016 is the year of getting our s**t together. Meaning, we are going to go and get all the approvals, septic changes, power line moved, consults with contractors and if all that checks out, drawings and permits. Good thing I am a pro at navigating the county! 

The other personal thing I am excited about is our 10 year anniversary. 

Here is us almost 15 years ago!! We had been dating for 3 weeks :) 

I convinced Sam that we needed to go somewhere big for our 10 yr. We hadn't really had a big trip since our honeymoon -so we have been planning for a ~ 2 week trip to Hawaii! I've never been and I know it sounds super cliche - but I am so excited. We have been planning and almost have it all nailed down. We signed up for a high mileage rewards card last fall and have racked up enough (with the help of my parents lending us some points) to get there and back on points! We are using our Amex SPG points and Air BnB for the rest of the trip. We like to have a kitchen and what not when we travel so we don't spend all our money on eating out.  Here is what we are planning: Fly out to Portland, Oregon and stay one day (in downtown), Fly to Honolulu for a day trip then get to Big Island that evening around 6pm. Stay at Big Island for 5 days, fly to Maui for 3 days, and then Kauai for 3 days until we fly back home. The kiddos are going to Florida to have their own adventure with my parents while we are basking in the sun and exploring all the islands. I. CAN. NOT. WAIT!

Professionally- Oh my - where to start?!? First off - I am so excited for our growing team! We started set-up crew last fall and I am so in love with the idea. It makes events go so much smoother that I don't even know how we ever did it with out them. We have hired a few new ladies that I am just so freaking excited about! I worked with Leah a few weekends ago and at one point I just said "I am going to stop micro managing you." She doesn't need it. And if you know me - you know how excited that makes me! Our team is just getting bigger and stronger and I can not wait to see what the end of the year looks like.

I love my clients. I love the designs, the visions, and the friendships that have come out of working together. I genuinely get excited about seeing them and talking details. I love the trust they have for me and I can't wait to execute their amazing days.

I love the organization that is slowly creeping its way into our day to day at C&D. For two years we have just been surviving. We barely have kept our heads above water and it shows at the end of the year when we have a mess to contend with before taxes are due. Nothing makes me more excited than to have some sort of a system to get through the accounting, invoicing, payments, and all the other stuff that owning a business entails.

I think when 2015 started, I was just so tired for 2014, that I couldn't even consider what I was excited about. This past year, has been hard, but in a different way that 2014. It was more stable, less scary, and it made me realize that we could actually do this thing of owning a venue and running a planning company. It made me start dreaming again, organizing, and seeing what can be better. I am so excited for this year.I think I have said "excited" 100 times in this post - but it is true! It is going to be an amazing year for sure!


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