How Mindfulness Reconnected Me With Fashion

When I started my personal style blog “K on the Bay” in 2012, I snapped shots of my hometown, sunsets, and my shoes.

If I could tie in a few local brands or thrifty finds, great! As a simple Tumblr site, my vision was to show how classic style and nature go hand-in-hand. As the years went on, I became more conscious of my content. I began taking photos to get the post out quickly, ignoring my initial creative vision and love for the process.

When it was authentic for me to put on an outfit, head into work, and snap shots along Grand Traverse Bay, great! Yet once I moved to New York City, it became a chore. I started to shift my focus from creative endeavors to relationships, which also served a good purpose- for the time.

Not only did I never wear heels unless absolutely necessary, I barely wore color, either.

NYFW 2014 with Dallas and Jacey


Then, I realized I was wearing clothes to make other people happy: not me.

The brands, the designers, the ad agencies- I was leaving behind my own vision to adapt to someone else’s.

I had to take a step back and think- what clothes do I feel good in no matter what?

What do I grab first out of my closet?

Although it wasn’t organic or natural for me to snap daily outfit shots in a busy city like New York- especially when I was single with a self-timer- I still had a lot of thoughts. I started writing for my friend Ashley’s website, Kinda Kind, two months after I mysteriously hit “delete” on my blog New Year’s Eve 2016. Leaving behind four years of photos, collaborations, and memories may have been hard, but I was ready to leave behind my materialistic past and figure out what truly made me happy.

My last few months in NYC were challenging- it was pure survival mode. Trump was running for President, the #MeToo movement was a year and a half away, and my own mental health needed a serious break.

I found peace in the park and spent hours writing by the reservoir. I pondered the meaning of life, wondering if I would ever find any sort of fulfillment.

I spent the next few years writing about my journey, what makes me happy, and learned who I am as a woman- without any distractions. Being conscious of what brings me joy- not what commercials, “influencers,” or Cosmopolitan Magazine tells me- was the first step in finding inner peace.

Instead of spending Saturday morning in bed, I would get up and take a walk across the Charles River Esplanade. I began noticing the patterns in nature, the animals at the park, and the familiar faces at my Cambridge Starbucks.

As I documented my path in Boston, I realized how tied I still was to fashion- at least, the creative process.

I had a different style than the other fashion bloggers- simple photos with little to no written content- no ads or frills, and no promises of a brighter tomorrow if you buy a new lipstick shade. This didn’t make me popular. That wasn’t the point- the point was authenticity.

As I shot a photo of my new bracelet alongside my notes for the day and coffee cup, I realized how fashion, technology, AND mindfulness can merge- but not in the way you may think.

I’ve been creating my own style for some time now, a style that hasn’t changed much since I was a high school junior in a black turtleneck and gray Express mini skirt. It’s always been basic, classic, and chic- with a few added surprises.

Fashion doesn’t have to be complicated to be beautiful, and neither do our lives. My time spent away from working in fashion made me realize how what I’ve learned can add to the industry once again- and never to change the style that is mine.

When I used to work or consult for others, my soul would be crushed when they didn’t like my content. After spending hours coming up with ideas, it could be a challenge to integrate my vision with someone else’s.

As an independent person, this also made me realize- stop working with people who don’t share your vision.

Although some women on the outside may judge me for choosing a bike over a Lexus, renting a townhouse instead of having a mortgage, and choosing a cat over a husband and kids- I chose this lifestyle for a reason.

I’m free.

I am free from obsession with “things,” the need for more, and the warped view that I’m not enough.

Now, I can simply enjoy the creative process- mindfully.

The Mindful in Style inspiration board 💛

Dream Big: Turning Blog Posts Into A Solid Foundation

Along the path of life, people may misunderstand your journey or doubt your dreams.

When I decided to move to San Francisco in 2008, months before the stock market crashed and prior to a publicly traded Facebook, an acquaintance scoffed at me saying, “well, that will be cheap.”

Within two weeks of this comment, I got a job at a popular tech startup downtown SF and was living in a rent-controlled apartment in Laurel Heights- even less than what some friends in Metro Detroit were paying- because for me, it’s always about thinker smarter, not harder.

What would have happened if I would have taken his comment to heart?

What would have happened in the course of my life had I held back from my cross- country moves, calling off a wedding, quitting jobs I was selling my soul for, or walking away from people who didn’t value me-

all because of what someone who barely knows me had to say?

Had I not moved to SF, I never would have gotten homesick the next year and moved to Austin. I wouldn’t have met some amazing people in Texas who I’m still in touch with today, and I probably wouldn’t have decided to move back to San Francisco had I not lived such a great life the first time around.

But in 2010, I was different. I had discovered blogging, sharing my stories online, and documenting my daily activities. I realized how powerful connection is- and how you don’t have to be involved in a local community to feel a sense of home; home is wherever you feel understood. 

People doubted the San Francisco Giants that year, too. But we all know how that turned out. Fall of 2010, I drove back to the city after a work trip in Lake Tahoe, high on life after quitting an office manager job in data security. With my rental car windows down and the music on, I felt free- but I didn’t know what the rocky road of creative freedom would bring months and years into this journey.


The same person who mocked my California move asked to meet with me years later about marketing his company, as he saw my work and experience from San Francisco.

I couldn’t work with someone who once doubted me.

Over the years, I learned an important lesson the hard way: You don’t need to try to explain or justify anything to anyone when you make choices in life! Those who resonate with your path will find you- but it’s not your job to explain. 

You can simply show them.

For now, try to ignore the negative or fear-based distractions and keep aiming high- the only limitation you have is what others try to project onto you- and what you believe. ✨ You have your own foundation to build upon.


The “Dream Big, Darling” rock was created from a post I wrote back in 2017, inspired by a Primark sweatshirt and a day planner from the Harvard Coop.

Living In the Flow- This Weekend’s Lesson, As Told By A Rock


I’ve had a blast writing in the sun over the weekend, biking throughout town, and leaving little messages in secret spots.

Earlier in the week I was feeling manic- I was finding myself roaming from one room to another, starting one project but never finishing another. I was bouncing off other people’s energy, encouragement, and feedback, and forgetting to focus on what I was doing. Even for someone who writes about living in the moment, I can lose my sense of grounding, too!

I spent the weekend on my bike, exploring the city, and snapping shots of the beauty around me. Like magic, my sense of balance was restored and I felt like I had my wings of flow once again.

At last.

I sat by the Boardman River, aligning my rocks and accessories while I gazed into the water. As the river flowed, I felt my body loosen and my spirit light up. At last, the mania had begun to pass.

I can also thank my meditation teacher, Nilcee, a wonderful soul who I met back in my NYC days. She leads a Tuesday night meditation in Astoria, but has moved over to Zoom during the pandemic. Although we met four years ago, I’ve felt her energy with me ever since- and unlike other teachers in the past, she assures me she is a guide; I already have all the power within. I may have a difficult time listening to others who tell me what to do (my sacral tells me everything I need to know), but I feel extremely empowered when I’m guided along my path- or river, if you will.

She reminds me of my natural flow and rhythm, and to tune out distractions with tuning into myself. On Friday night, I even called in to a virtual Happy Hour to chat with the Astoria friends along the Grand Traverse Bay!

Near and far, it’s wonderful to feel connection, and it’s even easier to do so when you tune into yourself and live in the flow.

I’ll be leaving these around town throughout the next week, so keep your eye out for a few little golden words in Traverse City (and soon Boston + NYC!).


Sacral Says

It’s that feeling in your gut telling you to make that right turn.

It’s the voice urging you to stay home from the party right when you’re ready to leave, to get out of bed and start writing at 3AM, and to make that cross-country move on a whim.

You know the feeling telling you “yes” or “no,” the little “mmhmm” or “uh uh” urging you to make a big decision- a decision that doesn’t make sense to anyone but you?

That’s your sacral response– and, if you’re a Manifesting Generator (or Generator) like me, you have a sacral authority that has been guiding you whether you’ve realize it or not.

Before I learned about Human Design, I had no idea my inner guide, or intuition, had an official name, leading my every move throughout my life. Those times when I followed the crowd, listened to negative feedback, or allowed naysayers to sway my decisions were the times I ignored my inner authority: my Sacral Center.

Friends and family have often thought my decisions were irrational; crazy, even. However, my moves to San Francisco, Boston, and even home to Michigan were based on feelings in my gut that I couldn’t ignore.

People often write to me and ask how I knew when it was right for me to make that next move or to quit a job that wasn’t a good fit. Lately, I’ve told them my own experiences- but also about how it relates to my Human Design. We all have an inner authority- one that won’t lead us in the wrong direction.

During this pandemic and uncertainty, our society has been forced to slow down. It’s not comfortable for many, but it’s a gift in disguise- one we may not receive again.

It’s the gift of pause and reflection.

Not only do I recommend taking this time for self-discovery, it’s also a perfect opportunity to re-assess the life you’ve been living.

How many of your decisions were impacted by society’s expectations? What choices did you make because of what other people said? If you could stop and do something over, what would you go back and accomplish?

With idle time, we can see our lives more clearly. What is your gut telling you? If you have a blank slate in front of you, what direction do you want to go in?

When you stop and listen to your gut- or whatever your inner authority may be- it’s amazing what doors begin to open for you.

A Time to Reflect and Create

Traverse City may be a ghost town, but it’s no different than the rest of the world right now.

I’m so fortunate to live in such a beautiful place, full of inspiration and serenity, especially during this time. There’s no need for entertainment when you have the peace inside yourself and the beauty all around you.

My heart goes out to everyone who is out of work or experiencing loss due to this pandemic. Please continue to take care of yourself, because there will be brighter days ahead.

Continue to create, inspire, learn, and grow. We can all take this time as the collective to look within and determine how we want to move forward with our lives. 🌿

Soul Connection or Nah? Recognizing the Difference Between Bonds

It’s happened to the best of us. We meet someone and are instantly drawn to them- but why?

Sometimes you have a deep and undeniable spiritual connection with another person, while other times your intuition can play tricks on you, making you think there’s a higher connection when it’s really a lesson in disguise.

If you feel a strong bond with someone who is trying to change you, guilt you, or make you feel you’re not enough, that’s not a soul connection. From my own experience, it was always a narcissist looking to feed from my spirit.

Has anyone else experienced this? Have you met someone you were instantly drawn to, only to realize later the outcome wasn’t what you expected? Did you keep trying to find ways for them to accept you? Did you constantly feel you weren’t worthy?

Oh yeah, me too.

As I reflect on the past four or five years, it’s clear to me how I’ve met people I’ll forever share a bond with, people I’ll keep from a distance, and people I will never talk to again, but will always value the lesson they taught me.

Whether it’s a business, family, or a personal connection, it’s important to recognize the role people play in our lives- and that it isn’t our job to change them or the nature of the relationship.

It is what it is.

You Don’t Need to Have Everything Figured Out at 25

The one thing they don’t teach in school is that you aren’t supposed to know where your life is going when you graduate at, say, 22.

Sure, it’s important to have some sort of direction, but how do you know after two decades of life what you really want?

Ten years ago, I was living in San Francisco, working as an office manager at a tech company. I had a boyfriend who worked in finance and usually hung out with his group of college friends from UC Berkeley more than him (they were more fun). I lived with two roommates down the street from said boyfriend in Russian Hill. My life was one big routine, the day in and the day out, so I found other ways to entertain myself.

So, I began writing.

Whether it was a Yelp review or blog post about an event I went to (I did a lot of events and promo work in my 20’s), I was happiest when I was sharing with the world.

Nevertheless, underneath the surface I thought my relationship had to “go somewhere.” I thought my job defined me and my success. I worried my Central Michigan University degree wasn’t good enough compared to everyone in the Bay Area with more impressive degrees than me. I constantly compared myself to other people and their success.

My boyfriend and I broke up that summer of 2010 and I quit my job in the fall. Back to square one, I continued to write, struggled with finances, and drank too much, but I knew I was closer to what I was supposed to be doing than sitting at an office desk five days a week (minus the drinking).

Through a lot of experiences, trial and error, and life lessons, 10 years later I still don’t know what direction my life will take. That’s the beauty of life- the unexpected surprises.

~

I’ve spent the past month spending a lot of time working on my coaching business, starting a new job at a wellness center, and writing, of course. Unlike my decisions to quickly find a job that looked good but wasn’t fulfilling, I waited to find something aligned with my overall goals and vision for the future.

My own experiences and lessons have lead me on a path of helping other people live a healthy, balanced life of purpose and joy, especially young women. However, whether you’re 20 or 70, it’s never too late to make a positive change in your life.

I’ve talked with and interviewed various women these past few months, learning what fuels their own passions. One woman left her corporate job at 55 to open a bakery. A friend of mine from Connecticut lost her stomach at age 17 and later channeled her energy through art, writing, and theatre- and even created her own one-woman show off Broadway (which I got to see back in 2014).

The common denominator between all of the people I have talked to is how their own experiences shaped their decisions- and because of these experiences, they were able to contribute something to the world. Something they couldn’t have contributed had they not experienced what they went through.

So, you really can’t tell me that you’re supposed to know where your life is going at 25.

Why would you want to?

Gossip is a Form of Connection… and I Don’t Want a Part of It

A couple of years ago I heard a group of people making fun of me after I left the room. In a fury, I started writing a short and not-that-sweet blog post about it- a post titled “Gossip: It’s Low Vibe Energy.”

I often write about the things in life that irritate me, and almost immediately felt better afterward. I’ve written about the things in life that are painful- heartbreak, my experience in treatment, depression, and trauma. I’ve revisited stories of high school bullies and people who pushed me out of their life. I’ve talked about my alcoholism before people could start whispering about where I had been for a month or my poor behavior in the past. I’ve tried to own my side of the street, and took back my narrative before others tried to construe the truth- or think their words would break me.

I’ve noticed how gossip isn’t necessarily meant to be malicious or cruel toward other people, though. As a person who used to have a habit of taking everything personally, I was deeply hurt when people gossiped about me. Whether it was a flat out lie or laughing at my misfortune, I withdrew from connecting with people out of fear. For years I kept to myself and avoided interaction whenever possible.

This all began to change when I moved to the city. In San Francisco, being quirky was widely accepted. In New York, it was encouraged to drink during the day. In Boston, well, people were more concerned with themselves than even giving you a second glance, let alone gossip.

Now back in my hometown of 14,000 people in the city proper, of course gossip runs wild. Whether it’s school board scandal or frowning on changes in the community, people thrive on the dirt. They feed off of it.

I’ve learned an important lesson though- one even more pertinent than owning my narrative:

A lot of people use gossip to connect.

They talk about others to feel heard. They whisper about people behind their backs to gain some sort of validation from their peers.

Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people.

Eleanor Roosevelt

Connection is a powerful thing, but a lot of people aren’t comfortable with sharing their own truth. They connect based on other people, shallow aspects of life, and material gain. They judge other people by what they have or what they’ve accomplished, but not what’s inside their soul.

Today, I connect based on truth.

I’ve been invited to meet old friends and I’ve received messages from acquaintances who are merely curious about my personal life. I’m aware not all of these people truly care about me as a person, but they do care about what sort of drama or problems I may have.

It’s okay, though- I’ve beat them to it.

I’ve already shared what’s really going on with me throughout the web, and I hope to have more opportunities to share my story with the world. Whether it’s public speaking or writing, I know my experiences have helped people learn they’re not alone in their struggles.

My own struggles have brought me strength, for I have overcome them. Gossip may still be low vibe energy, and it’s not something I will participate in today. I wish the best for those who have snickered behind my back or tried to watch me fall; because today, I continue to rise. I hope they find their own way of doing so, too.