Peace Out 2016

Like the vast majority of us, I feel that 2016 was . . . . a bitch of a year. I don’t really want to rehash all the stress and duress that filled up the calendar, but let’s just say Team Colley is very much looking forward to 2017.

This has been a pretty quiet place for 2016, something I hope to rectify in the new year. I miss this space and hope to make it more of a priority. I’ve been writing here since 2007 and I think that this year it was, by far, the least amount of posts.

I finished up my third round of “101 Things in 1001 Days” back in November and decided to hold off for the latest re-boot to coincide with New Year’s. I’ve updated the page with my new list, if your so inclined.

Wishing all of  you only peace & love in 2017.

 

 

101 Things: Retired List (2/19/14-11/16/16)

The Mission: Complete 101 preset tasks in a period of 1001 days. This is my third attempt at this project, so this is a new list as of February 19, 2014. It includes some previous goal as well as some new ones. Wish me luck! The Criteria: Tasks must be specific (ie. no ambiguity in the wording) with a result that is either measurable or clearly defined. Tasks must also be realistic and stretching (ie. represent some amount of work on my part). Due Date: November 16, 2016.

001. Go to Stella & Dot’s Hoopla Event

002. Promote to Star Stylist

003. Earn enough money to take family on vacation

004. See 10 concerts:

  1. Musicians from Ravinia’s Steans Music Institute – 3/22/14

005. Go to a classical concert/opera with Roz

006. Go to a book reading event

007. Read 50 books:

  1. The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive #1)
  2. Words of Radiance (The Stormlight Archive #2)
  3. The Goldfinch
  4. Frog Music
  5. Annihilation (Southern Reach Trilogy #1)
  6. Authority (Southern Reach Trilogy #2)
  7. Positive Intelligence
  8. The Fault in Our Stars
  9. The Vacationers
  10. Mistborn (The Mistborn Trilogy #1)
  11. The Well of Ascension (The Mistborn Trilogy #2)
  12. The Hero of Ages (The Mistborn Trilogy #3)
  13. The Double Bind
  14. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
  15. Acceptance (Southern Reach Trilogy #3)
  16. The Fire Seekers (Babel Trilogy #1)
  17. A Tale for the Time Being: A Novel
  18. We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
  19. The Kitchen House
  20. A Tale For the Time Being
  21. Yes, Please
  22. The Bassoon King
  23. The Girl on the Train
  24. #Girlboss
  25. The Martian
  26. When Breath Becomes Air
  27. The Nightingale
  28. The Passage
  29. All the Birds in the Sky
  30. The Passage (The Passage Trilogy 1)
  31. The Twelve (The Passage Trilogy 2)
  32. The City of Mirrors (The Passage Trilogy 3)
  33. Homegoing
  34. Find Your Extrordinary
  35. The Steerswoman (Steerswoman 1)
  36. The Outskirter’s Secret (Steerswoman 2)
  37. The Lost Steersman (Steerswoman 3)
  38. The Language of Power (Steerswoman 4)
  39. The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo
  40. Wool Omnibus (Silo Series Book 1)
  41. Shift Omnibus (Silo Series Book 2)
  42. Dust (Silo Series Book 3)
  43. Beacon 23
  44. Yellow Crocus
  45. The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Stories

008. Visit Madison, WI

009. Go to the Brookfield Zoo

010. See 25 movies:

  1. The Imitation Game (1/3/2015)
  2. American Sniper (1/18/2015)
  3. Jurassic World (Summer 15)
  4. Spectre (11/12/15)
  5. Star Wars: The Force Awakens (12/23/15)

011. Go on Chicago Architectural Tour

012. Lincoln Park Zoo

013. Rent a cabin

014. Go to 10 different museums:

  1. Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art
  2. DuPage Children’s Museum
  3. Grand Rapids Children’s Museum
  4. Morton Arboretum
  5. Frederick Meijers Gardens

015. Teach Joe how to swim (taking swim lessons)

016.Teach Joe how to read

017. Get Joe potty trained

018. Commission painting of Walter

019. Get Joe a passport

020. Go to The Morton Arboretum

021. Buy a higher quality sewing machine

022. Teach someone to knit

023. Make a pie for Pi day (3/14)

024. Get certified in CPR

025. Start golfing again

026. Join a yoga studio

027. Finish a 5K

028. Go fishing

029. Go camping

030. Go canoeing

031. Go to Great America

032. Find a reliable babysitter for JWC

033. Get a home safe

034. Participate in March of Dimes Walk again

035. Get a safety deposit box

036. Find doctors/dentist for Joe

037. Find a new church to attend

038. Take Joe to the beach

039. Make a will

040. Get a library card

041. Organize and edit digital photo library

042. Find new doctors/dentist for Shawn and myself

043. Get a massage

044. Get a facial

045. Take Shawn on a surprise trip

046. See all Academy Award Best Picture Nominees before the awards show.

047. Take Joe to see a parade

048. Get personalized stationery

049. Get new business cards

050. Get address stamp made

051. Go to a Chicago Bears game

052. Go to a Chicago Cubs game

053. Go to NorthernGRADE

054. Go to a Chicago Blackhawks game

055. Go to a Kane County Cougars game

056. Complete Couch to 5K

057. Go iceskating

058. Take a cooking class

059. Host a beer/wine tasting

060. Get window treatments for master bedroom

061. Find local non-profit to volunteer

062. Knit preemie caps/blankets and donate

063. Make a quilt(s) to donate to a worthy cause

064. Make another quilt for Joe

065. Make a quilt for nephew

066. Make ice cream using a recipe from Jeni’s cook book.

067. Get couch for master bedroom sitting area

068. Create cookbook of family recipes

069. Cook 10 things from Mastering the Art of French Cooking

070. Cook 10 things from 1080 Cook Book

071. Make pasta from scratch

072. Host a cookie exchange

073. Go to a wine tasting

074. Host a potluck

075. Visit a country I’ve never visited before

076. Go to the drive-in

077. Go to a National Park

078. Go strawberry picking

079. Make strawberry jam

080. Go apple picking

081. Make applesauce

082. Go to a county fair

083. Join a CSA

084. Join or start a book club

085. Go back to Hawaii

086. Fly somewhere with Joe

087. Get all artwork framed and displayed

088. Use Aveda points to go on vacation (I have enough!)

089. Go to Las Vegas

090. Have a girls weekend

091. Have a dinner party

092. Plan a surprise party

093. Plant a garden

094. Get a bike

095. Get a play set for Joe

096. Have Family Christmas party

097. Figure out what to do with Instagram photos

098. Plant a tree for the twins

099. Get a tattoo in memory of the twins

100. Put $10 into savings for every completed item

101. Donate $10 for every completed item

101 Things: 9. Go to the Brookfield Zoo

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This past Sunday Shawn and I took Joseph to the Brookfield Zoo. I have not been there since I was a kid, so it was a bit of a surreal experience. I must admit, it isn’t quite as amazing as the Columbus Zoo, but Columbus was recently voted one of the best zoos in America – plus it has Jack Hannah!

Anyways, back to our Brookfield trip. It was a gorgeous day on Sunday, perfect fall weather. Perfect for walking around outside and checking out the animals, fountains, and carousel. Plus, there was barely anyone there because of the Bears v. Packers fiasco game was going on.

Joe loved the carousel, we went on it once in the beginning and again right before we left. He like checking out the giraffes and walking through the primate exhibit, however I think his favorite was playing on the playground equipment and going to the children’s zoo exhibit.

I was excited to carry on a Torto family tradition by getting him a figure from the Mold-A-Rama machine to bring home. I remember getting them when we were little, Roz has gone with Luke and he has quite a collection at this point, now we can work on Joe’s.

I’m looking forward to taking him there again in the future, plus going to Lincoln Park Zoo sometime as well.

101 Things: 40. Get a Library Card

A couple of weeks ago, I went to the St. Charles Library and got myself and Joseph library cards. Its a great local library that is a five minute drive away from the house. I’m looking forward to taking Joe to some of their story-time programs. He loves to look at books and be read to, so I hope this turns into a love for reading as he gets older.

101 Things: 1. Go to Hoopla

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A few weeks ago, I attended Stella & Dot’s national sales conference in Orlando. It’s called Hoopla and I can definitely say it lived up to its name. Imagine over 3000 women getting together to learn, celebrate, and support one another. It was such a great experience and so much fun! While at Hoopla, the new fall line kicked off with an amazing fashion show, we learned about a new collaboration with the non-profit organization, Every Mother Counts, and we had tons of great training on how to build our business.

I was truly amazed at the sense of camaraderie and friendship among my fellow stylists. It felt more like a family reunion/wedding reception than a work conference. What struck me is the lack of competition and cattiness. Everyone is so supportive and welcoming and wanting to help you be the best you can. Pretty great stuff, considering that sometimes women can than gracious in that area.

I could bore you with all the details, but I think I’ll just give you my big take away and share what my new goals have become for this adventure.

1. I’ve realized that I have really missed my Stella & Dot business these past months while dealing with the move and living with my parents. It motivates, challenges, and thrills me in a way that can’t be replicated by being a mother and wife. It helps me remember who I am as a person and makes me better in other areas of my life.

2. I need to get over being afraid and making excuses. I’ve been holding myself back by using this move and relocation as a reason that I am not succeeding in my business. I have to make it a priority because I will only get out of it what I put in it.

3. I am setting a goal of having 15 trunk shows and building a team to gain the rank of STAR stylist by the end of 2014. This is huge, but they say that if you’re goals don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough!***

 

 

 

 

***This is going to be a lot of work, luckily I have the world’s best support/cheerleader with Shawn. I couldn’t even dream of this without him.

101 Things: 84. Join or start a book club

Mom started up a book club this winter with some neighbors and friends from school and asked me to become a member. I’ve been participating for the past few months and its been fun. I’ve enjoyed discussing books with others – reading can be such a solitary pursuit – and hearing such similar/different points of view regarding the same material. I’ve also been branching out to different authors and genres that I might have passed over. Some I’ve enjoyed, some not, but either way its been great to stretch out and try new things.

I still hope to start/join a book club that is a little closer to the genres I enjoy. It would be great to be able to discuss and dissect something like Annihilation or The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

101 Things in 1001 Days: Round Three

This will be the third time I’ve participated in 101 Things in 1001 Days. Its so interesting how your focus and interests change over time. I started my previous list on May 24th, 2011. I was living in Wisconsin and was not yet pregnant. I didn’t have any idea the roller coaster that was to come with moving, the twins, Joseph,moving again. I was focused on my Etsy shop, knitting and starting to think about learning to sew and make a quilt. Amazing how much has changed. I’m looking forward to starting anew with this list and to see what life will bring over these next 1001 days.

Here’s my new list, I’ll be updating my official 101 Things page soon, but thought you’d like to see the old one to compare. Let me know if you want to join me this time around!

001. Go to Stella & Dot’s Hoopla Event
002. Promote to Star Stylist
003. Earn enough money to take family on vacation
004. See 10 concerts:
005. Go to a classical concert/opera with Roz
006. Go to a book reading event
007. Read 50 books:
008. Join the Chicago Art Institute
009. Join the Brookfield Zoo
010. See 25 movies:
011. Go on Chicago Architectural Tour
012. Go to Lincoln Park Zoo
013. Rent a cabin
014. Go to 10 different museums:
015. Teach Joe how to swim (with professional help)
016.Teach Joe how to read
017. Get Joe potty trained
018. Commission painting of Walter
019. Get Joe a passport
020. Have a picnic
021. Buy a higher quality sewing machine
022. Teach someone to knit
023. Make a pie for Pi day (3/14)
024. Get certified in CPR
025. Start golfing again
026. Join a yoga studio
027. Finish a 5K
028. Go fishing
029. Go camping
030. Go canoeing
031. Go to Great America
032. Find a reliable babysitter for JWC
033. Get a home safe
034. Donate to Locks of Love again
035. Get a safety deposit box
036. Find doctors/dentist for family
037. Find a new church to attend
038. Take Joe to the beach
039. Make a will
040. Get a library card
041. Organize and edit digital photo library
042. Teach myself how to crochet
043. Get a massage
044. Get a facial
045. Read 50 books:
046. See all Academy Award Best Picture Nominees before the awards show.
047. Take Joe to see a parade
048. Get personalized stationery
049. Get new business cards
050. Get address stamp made
051. Go to a Chicago Bears game
052. Go to a Chicago Cubs game
053. Go to NorthernGRADE
054. Go to a Chicago Blackhawks game
055. Go to a Kane County Cougars game
056. Complete Couch to 5K
057. Go iceskating
058. Take a cooking class
059. Host a beer tasting
060. Go to 30 movies:
061. Find local non-profit to volunteer
062. Knit preemie caps/blankets and donate
063. Make a quilt(s) to donate to a worthy cause
064. Make another quilt for Joe
065. Make a quilt for nephew
066. Make ice cream using a recipe from Jeni’s cook book.
067. Host a wine tasting party
068. Create cookbook of family recipes
069. Cook 10 things from Mastering the Art of French Cooking
070. Cook 10 things from 1080 Cook Book
071. Make pasta from scratch
072. Host a cookie exchange
073. Go to a wine tasting
074. Host a potluck
075. Visit a country I’ve never visited before
076. Go to the drive-in
077. Go to a National Park
078. Go strawberry picking
079. Make strawberry jam
080. Go apple picking
081. Make applesauce
082. Go to a county fair
083. Join a CSA
084. Join or start a book club
085. Go back to Hawaii
086. Fly somewhere with Joe
087. Get all artwork framed and displayed
088. Use Aveda points to go on vacation (I have enough!)
089. Go to Las Vegas
090. Have a girls weekend
091. Have a dinner party
092. Plan a surprise trip
093. Plant a garden
094. Get a bike
095. Clean up track information in iTunes
096. Have Family Christmas party
097. Figure out what to do with Instagram photos
098. Plant a tree for the twins
099. Get a tattoo in memory of the twins
100. Put $10 into savings for every completed item
101. Donate $10 for every completed item

101 Things: Getting It Done!

044. Unpack all books/photos/artwork in basement

This was accomplished by Shawn and I to prep for the garage sale we had back in September. No more boxes! Woot!

049. Get new business cards

Hello, my name is Samantha Colley, Independent Stylist for Stella & Dot. Please, take my card.

054. Go to a Columbus Blue Jackets game

Watched CBJ lose to the Bruins. Highlight was watching Charra on the ice, he’s 7ft 4 in in skates!

097. Replace back deck

Thank you, handy man!

084. Renovate the master bathroom

Didn’t go with the full renovation, but we got rid of that god-awful carpeting and replaced it with tile. Looks like a day spa in there now!

101 Things: 50. Purchase address stamp

il_570xN.427086526_owihI know this might seem fairly trivial, but I’ve been wanting a personalized address stamp for quite some time. I am rather tired of using the “free” labels that I receive from donating to certain charities, so I did some research and decided to purchase one fromLemon Tree Paper Co. This husband and wife team, based in Nashville, create some amazing custom stationery, party invitations, and stamps. I only wish that they were around back when I was planning our wedding.

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I chose the Remington style for our address (see above) I love the combination of fonts and how the design reads both modern and contemporary. Plus “The Colleys” just sounds awesome, right?

I decided to go with a hand stamp rather than a self-inking one (they other both options) so I could change inks based on what I was addressing -I’m already dreaming about using metallic ink for Christmas cards and red for Valentine’s Day. Plus, it will make paying the bills a little bit less painful when I get to use this lovely stamp to address those nasty tasting envelopes.

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 photos courtesy of Lemon Tree Paper Co.

 

 

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101 Things: 100. Organize wrapping paper supplies in closet

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Okay, this is another one that might not be the most exciting, but it is going to make life so much better. Sounds silly? Well, let me explain:

All of the wrapping paper paraphernalia is jammed in the closet in my studio/craft room. It’s a small closet and this stuff takes up way too much space. Wrapping paper rolls, gift bagels, etc. explode out every time I open the door. Super annoying. I also have storage bins shoved in every corner or the room because I can’t fit them into the closet not to mention various piles of half finished projects, mending, and craft ephemera floating about. I feel like I’m trying to work in the clearance section of Michael’s instead of the clean, creative space I originally planned.

After much research and debate, I finally decided to order the Stanton Wrapping Cart from Home Decorators. It’s a bit pricier than some, but I liked that it has a ton of room for everything, is sturdy, fits in the closet, and is on casters so I can roll it out and back when needed. Plus, they had it on sale and with free shipping! Isn’t is a beauty? My plan was to corral and organize the closet, so I can then make room for everything. Basically, starting a chain reaction for cleanliness!

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