Yesterday afternoon I was very surprised and excited to find out the news that the Instant Boss Club generously placed me on the Top 50 InstantBoss Influencers of 2018, and it honestly made my entire day. More than making any list for vindication or to brag, it just felt so humbling but exciting to be recognized for my dedication and hard work in such an honorable way. This blog is a labor of love, and over the last five years I have been fortunate enough to grow it into a business, but if you have been here from the beginning you know that building it into a business was never my intention, and first and foremost this started out of a desire to create, share my passion for life, and to help inspire others in any way possible. I never saw dollar signs or lists of ‘best of’s’ – I just wanted to have a place to share my journey and to have something to look back and reflect on as time passed by.
I started what was originally South Coast Movement (shout out to those of you who have been here since those early days) back at the end of 2013 as a place to share style and fashion tips, DIY and home interiors, and travel stories. Darshan and I had just been married in 2011 and had moved away from family in 2010, we were traveling, settling into our first home, and building a business, so a blog felt like the most natural and effective way to share some our early stories and adventures. Not long after I launched I found out I was pregnant with Raj so I used my blog as an exciting place to share maternity fashion and to chronicle my pregnancy. I have said it before and I will say it a million times, after having Raj I often attribute my blog to saving my soul. It gave me purpose, it helped me feel like the old me which had been so easily lost from having a baby, and once a week to take blog photos with my friend Lindsey it gave me reason to get dressed up and do my hair and makeup, when I was fortunate enough to be invited to those early O.C. blogger events it gave me reason to find babysitters and get out of the house to socialize. Not long after having the realization of how much my blog saved me from most likely falling deep into the early months of loneliness after having a baby, I realized that I had a voice for hope and internal strength that I could and wanted to share with others, and over the years this has become the place where I just want to spread awareness that as women, mothers, and individuals who work hard, we can pursue anything we set out minds to and nothing in the world should stop us from that. In fact, over the last few months I have been working on a piece I hope to share here soon diving really deep and opening up in the most raw and honest post about how much this blog saved me early on, but because it is such a sensitive topic and something I really want to perfect, I have yet to publish it… stay tuned for that, though, because I know its in my heart to share it one day.
More than anything in life, I am just thankful for the opportunities this little website that dedicate my heart to has brought me over the years. None of it would be remotely possible without all of you, my readers, who don’t realize how much your click to my website, a like and comment on a photo, or a share on your own pages means to me and how much it supplies that I get to continue to make this my work. Your emails and messages after I have shared a blog post that resonates with you gives fuel to my soul and little do you know how much you all inspire me. I hope that you will all continue to come here as my friends, as my family, and together we all can continue to build this beautiful community where we all feel safe to share our hearts with one another. From the bottom of my heart, thank you to all of you for your endless support. You will always have a friend in me…
photos by Alicia Mink Photography