It’s my birthday eve! For today’s episode, I thought it would be fun to share 35 of my favorite things in honor of my 35th birthday. My hope is that you get to know me a bit better and enjoy a break from the more business-heavy and content-driven episodes. If any of these things would make your list as well, please reach out and let me know!
On Quianna Marie Weekly, we’re chatting about business growing pains, finding genuine connections, and celebrating wins of all sizes through the lens of a photographer at heart. Sprinkled throughout stories and interviews with past clients, photographers and other business owners this podcast is designed to help you step into your purpose and to truly create a life you’re proud of, a life worth photographing and sharing.
Make sure you’ve hit that follow or subscribe button on your favorite podcast player to get notified each week as we air new episodes!
Subscribe on Your Favorite Podcast Player
Connect with Quianna
Today’s episode is brought to you by The Green House, my resource garden for photographers! Let me help you AMPLIFY your heart online and in real life to turn bridesmaids into future brides through templates, workshops, and freebies!
Review the Show Notes:
Affirmation Cards (3:14)
Coffee and Almond Creamer (4:50)
Taking Notes in Church (5:13)
Short Hikes and Long Conversations (6:25)
When Left-Overs Fit Perfectly in the Tupperware (7:18)
Car Fries (7:56)
Sharing Big Dreams with Friends (8:29)
White Elephant Gifts (9:22)
Cozy Sweaters and Lounge Wear (10:45)
Cuddles with Faith (11:28)
Huge Post-It Sticky Notes (12:22)
Nature Walks and Painting with Elianna (14:03)
Camping and Exploring Off the Grid (15:41)
Pinning My Dream Life on Pinterest (16:11)
Audio Books and Podcasts (18:28)
The Think Tank Suitcase (19:17)
Affiliate Links (20:03)
Slow Strolls through Target with Starbucks and My Best Friend (22:00)
Playing Pickleball (24:31)
Love Notes and Thank You Notes (25:19)
Crystals, Sage Sticks, Palosanto and All the Woo Woo Stuff (27:14)
Hosting Parties and Creating Charcuterie Boards (28:52)
Printing Photos, Creating Albums, and Gifting Photo Gifts (30:05)
Spending Time Laughing with my Brother and All My Family (30:51)
My Airfryer (31:48)
College-Ruled 5-Subject Notebooks (31:59)
Road Trips (33:26)
Country Concerts (33:56)
Pilot G2 Pens (35:19)
My Business (36:12)
Getting All Green Lights and Good Parking Spots (37:04)
My Life (38:18)
Mentioned in this Episode:
Review the Transcript:
Welcome back. Beautiful. I am so happy you’re here. So this podcast will be dropping exactly on my birthday Eve. So my birthday this year and every year is December 13. And it is quite honestly one of my favorite days of the year. I know there are so many people that kind of shy away from their birthdays, they don’t like posting about it, or it’s just another day of the week for them. Nope, not around here, baby. But we love to celebrate everything. And my birthday is very, very, very high on that list. I just love knowing that it is your international like your own personal holiday. And the people that have twin birthdays, it’s just so fun to celebrate, and to truly look back on your life and think wow, like just thinking about all the fun things that you’ve done all the fun things that you look forward to do.
I just know that so many of us, you know, kind of don’t look forward to these birthdays, but not around here, baby, I love them. So for today’s conversation, I thought it’d be so fun to share 35 of my favorite things. And the reason why I want to share these is because I think it’s really fun hearing about other people’s favorite things, things that may not be a part of your everyday routine, something that you can maybe learn from just kind of see like how people live their lives.
And I know this kind of sounds like super self centered around my birthday and my favorite things. But I love sharing these things because I know this podcast can get very business heavy and content creation driven. And at the end of the day, I really want it to be a safe space where we can get to know each other. We can support each other encourage our businesses, yes, but most importantly, encourage our lives and our work life balance and support our adventures and our Why is and so I just think it’s fun to sprinkle in the it’s really personal post, here and there.
Plus, I think it’s a great way for you to get to know me. And if you have anything in common with these favorite things, please I would love for you to slide into my DMs send me an email or reach out to me if you have my number text me babe. Like I just want to know if these are your favorite things as well.
Welcome to Quianna Marie Weekly, a podcast for creatives who love to celebrate wins big or small by dancing in the kitchen photographers who are excited to serve their clients and friends who are ready to chase really, really big dreams. You can find all of the resources mentioned in this episode at Kiana murray.com/podcast. Join me as I share weekly motivation, chat about growing pains, finding genuine connections and celebrating your wins through the lens of a photographer at heart. Come join me for a dance party. Ready? Loves though.
All right, so let’s dive into 35. Because yes, your girl is 30 to 35 years old, I can’t even believe it. But I just want to remind you that these 35 things are not in any particular order. So if you’re listening to this and you’re thinking, What the heck, why am I way at the bottom of the list? Please know that I love you forever, and they’re just in a very random order.
Okay, let’s start with number one. Affirmation cards. I absolutely adore started my day with these affirmation cards. So mom and I have like a handful of different decks. And some of them are like really woowoo really taro vibes. Some of them are just sweet little reminders and quotes and pictures and fun things that we can relate to. But what I really love most about these affirmation cards is they’re incredible conversation starters, I can’t tell you how many times mom and I have actually cried while we’re sipping coffee. And just sharing about our day sharing about our struggles, sharing about our thoughts or dreams or hopes or regrets all the things.
And it’s just a great way to set an intention for the day or for the week or for the year like however often you pull these. It’s just a beautiful reminder and just a great way to kick off the conversation and kind of a reset. I know I’ve mentioned before in past episodes, and even Felicia and I on her Tuesday tryouts with key on her Hi Felicia podcast. If you haven’t listened to that, go check it out. We actually pull affirmation cards on some of those conversations. And it’s just a reminder that so many of us get caught up in the every day and soon our wheels are just spinning out of control and we are constantly in catch up mode instead of being really intentional with our time, our energy, our efforts and our Action List. Right. So number one is pretty long, I guess. They’re not all this long. But affirmation cards are my favorite and I cannot wait to share a bundle of favorites in the show notes for you.
Number two is kind of like a little sister favorite to that is coffee and almond creamer. I LOVE IT Iced I love it hot typically on every day like my vibe is kind of like a lukewarm, it starts out hot.
And then by the time I actually get to enjoy it, it’s kind of just warm. Like it’s like lukewarm. And I don’t even have a husband or children yet. Like, I don’t know how it happens, but it does.
Number three, I absolutely love taking notes at church. So I’ve been getting back into my faith, like, I feel like I’ve always had my faith. But since I’ve moved here to Arizona, I’ve kind of like, bounced around to different churches. I was raised super Catholic, old school, I have all my sacraments. I’ve been confirmed, at least that’s the most recent. And, you know, it’s been tough looking for churches that I feel like I belong to, or that I really love the vibe of, we actually found a really awesome church out here called Mountain View out here that’s actually in I think it might be San Tan Valley, or maybe it’s green Creek. But it’s out here in Arizona, and I love it.
I absolutely love it. And I love taking notes, because it’s just a great opportunity for me to listen, just jot down some bullet points. I’m not writing down everything that father Dan says, but I just love it because there’s always little nuggets or like little takeaways throughout the sermon. I guess it’s I don’t know if that’s what Christians call the sermon or you know, just like the talk, like what is actually the takeaway from church that day, and I just love reviewing it. I love hopping in a suburban on the way home and just chatting about it. And so yeah, I really love taking notes in church.
Number four, short hikes and long conversations. I don’t know about you, but I love getting out. And I love adventures. But I’m not quite the like backpacker, and like the one that you like, need to bring like the freeze dried fruit like food and, you know, gallons and gallons of water and like all of your like emergency kit supplies, like, don’t get me wrong, we should all be prepared when we are out in the wilderness.
But I like to keep my hikes pretty short, like maybe only a couple of miles front and back, like, you know, in and out. And then I love really, really fun conversations. And I’m honestly not opposed to going to get brunch or a big fat cheeseburger after that hike as though like I said, I just I love being out in nature soaking up the sun, getting some fresh air, it really grounds me and it’s actually where I get a lot of my ideas. So being out in nature definitely is on the top of the list.
Number five. Okay, this is so silly. But I love when leftovers fit perfectly into the Tupperware container. I have this like my, like magic touch where I can look at something in the pot or like, you know, on a plate and I can think, oh, okay, I think I’m gonna need this size Tupperware and somehow it just magically works. So I feel like that might be a hidden talent of mine. But I’m a sucker for really good Tupperware, I’m not a fan of the plastic Tupperware, where once you put spaghetti in there, oh my gosh, it looks like a bad tan, right? Like it just you just can’t get rid of that. I love some really good glass Tupperware.
Number six, I’m a huge fan of car fries. Anytime we go through in and out or Chick fil A, or we’re sliding through McDonald’s, I don’t hate I love McDonald’s french fries, I always have to get a car fried because I don’t like to share. And I like to kind of nibble on them. And I don’t like coming if I’m bringing them home. I don’t like eating them all and then not having any to enjoy with my burger. So if you are thinking about me when you order that next car fry, I just want you know that I’m cheering for you.
Number seven, sharing big dreams with friends. I am that friend, I am that Sister, I am that cousin, I am that friend that truly loves hearing what you’re passionate about. I know that sometimes small talk can be like fluff or annoying and who cares about the weather and, you know, politics can be you know, just so so drastic these days.
And you know so polarizing and so I love just going deep, real quick, and I love when others share what they’re passionate about, share about their wise share why you know, they’re they’re doing what they’re doing and then how they’re actually accomplishing those goals. Just to see that glimmer and that twinkle and like in my friend’s eyes and people like just neat is just is the coolest thing. So I love going deep sharing those wild dreams.
Number eight white elephant gifts. So I know this probably is like a seasonal thing. I can probably go off on how I love Fourth of July fireworks and I love Easter egg hunts and all the fun things around the holidays. But recently, the white elephant gift exchanges have been so fun recently I was at my friend Kelly’s house. And we did a really fun gift exchange. Mike, my boyfriend he actually opened up it was my gift. You guys I’m not even kidding. I had him I don’t even know how I didn’t even realize that it was a bag that we walked in with. I put it in a wine bag. And it was a rose quartz dildo like it looked like a huge penis
And he picked it up and oh my god, everybody was roaring. They were laughing. It was so funny. He looked at me and he’s like, I know you went to the Rock Store earlier. Like, I didn’t know you’ve got this and like, how did you NOT know that? That was the bag that I literally walked in with. Anyway, it was so funny. And of course it got stolen. It got stolen twice, actually, I think. So fun. And then just yesterday, I had the privilege of going to my friend Louise’s house, or I got to hang out with Felicia and Annette and Olga, and I met a huge group of new awesome friends here that, you know, like I always say, good people know, good people.
And we had some really fun gift exchange is there. And it’s just so fun. I love the idea of gift giving, but then also the competitiveness of stealing gifts. It’s just, it’s just so fun.
Okay, so number nine, I am a huge fan of cozy sweaters and loungewear I love things that are soft, and cozy. And honestly, I’m even being so picky that I don’t even like lounging around in yoga pants in my house anymore. Like I feel like those are like going out of style. And like even those are too tight for me. Like, I just love being in cozy sweats. As soon as I get home, the first thing I do is drop my pants and change my outfit put on my Magnolia sweatshirt, or you know something cozy, but I just at this point in the game, and maybe it’s just because I’m turning 35 I just choose comfort over everything right. So huge fan of those cozy, cozy, cuddly sweats.
Number 10. I know I mentioned before, we are in no specific order here.
And this should be number one at the top of my list. But number 10 is cuddling with Faith. Bringing home by German Shepherd puppy has been the biggest blessing, honestly of my entire life. I don’t know why I put off getting her for so long. But as photographers, small business owners and entrepreneurs know, our schedules can be really crazy. And so I put off bringing her home for years and years. But I’ve always been praying for her. And I know that the stars aligned to bring her sweet little spirit into my life, and I could not be more grateful. So if you’ve been thinking about bringing home a puppy, trust me, no joke, it is a lot of work. But it’s so much fun and so much love. And I just could not complete this list without including my little faithie girl, I love her so much.
Number 11 Huge those of you humungous, post it sticky notes, I am obsessed with these and actually should post a picture of my wall, maybe I’ll put that in my story sometime this week, the wall of my office is just full of them. And I love it because they’re a great way to brainstorm, they’re a great way to kind of map out a project or a launch or even your entire year, it’s a great way to kind of make funnels, you know.
So, for example, I’m working on actively right now working on a huge funnel where I’m launching the free challenge that I just recently did live. And now it’s available, right so like anybody that comes into my world, they have access to the free challenge, all about connecting with content. And then that gets funneled into my digital shop.
So I have you know, bundles of products, templates, guides and things like that into my, like education for photographer shop. And then also, of course, I’m always advertising and trying to market to get other photographers into my mastermind that’s totally for the first of the year. Those are great ways for me to just kind of like map it out and see it visually and I just use the normal like Crayola markers that are everybody’s favorites, right like, because that doesn’t have to be anything fancy. But I love it. And I’m constantly reminded of these sticky notes because they’re up on the wall in my office. And it’s just a gentle reminder, they kind of turn into just like, you know, part of the scenery sometimes I forget they’re there, but it does help to see them and to just kind of soak in and like kind of use them as checklists. So those posts, it’s our life and they can be kind of expensive.
I think they’re like 35 or 40 bucks for you know, one, one whole like sheet of them. So, but they’re so worth it because I use them for everything.
Number 12 nature walks and painting with Elianna. So Elianna is a little girl that I often post about? She is actually my cousin’s daughter so I would say she’s more like my niece but she really is my little cousin. And we are just soul sisters. She is my little spirit guide and it’s just so crazy how family and dynamics work where literally my cousin gave birth to like my twin like it’s so funny because we kind of joke and say that she’s part me part Melissa you know Nikki you know so Eliana is and she’s part of me part Melissa and then part Peter her father, right? Like it’s just so funny because like she has so many characteristics that are like us. And when I spend time with her, and I’m painting or we walk around with faith around the neighborhood and we we draw pictures of things, we collect rocks and stones and you know flowers that have fallen on the ground.
It just connects me back to my inner child and you is the best gift ever. Like I don’t even I don’t even have the words to thank Nikki for bringing this beautiful soul into my life like I’m gonna start crying because I just love her so much. And what’s funny is even Nikki and Peter will ask like Hey, when are you coming over because Elianna needs a little, little, you know, “Qui time” like she needs some time to like reset she’s get a little crazy and you know, she needs some time to like paint and explore and you know, get crafty.
And that’s what I love to do. I love spending time with her whether we’re decorating cookies, baking cupcakes for a birthday, or painting and just going to town on like a craft box. It is so much fun. And it’s one of my biggest joys in life.
Number 13 Camping and exploring off the grid. So this also kind of like, you know, goes into the recent, you know, point with Eliana and my family like, I love spending time off the grid and in nature. So anytime that I can have plans to have no plans, is just like the biggest blessing ever. And I really, truly enjoy that and camping and getting off the grid, getting money, you know, just kind of being up for any type of adventure is my jam.
So I love that number 14, pinning and dreaming of my dream life on Pinterest. So one thing that I noticed is there obviously was a shift with Pinterest. And this is just my personal journey with Pinterest where when it first rolled out, we were all pinning our like dream wedding days like for our own futures. One day, we were pinning our houses and you know, like just fun gifts and fashion and outfits. And like we were kind of like pinning our dream lives.
And then as I started really building my business and getting into more education, to help market and you know, grow my business, I was totally encouraged to shift my like scrolling and consuming of Pinterest and get into the producing role. So for the last Gosh, last couple of years, I have really hunker down and put a lot of effort into building up my Pinterest and just posting for others to find those inspirational posts to share, right, or to pin and you know, add to their, their boards.
And recently, I’d say this last year, I started pinning more intentionally like for my dream life. And I actually took the perspective of instead of just posting mansions or dream kitchens, or Oh, like this is what I want. You know, this is how I envision my future body to look like even like getting to the physical, I quickly realized that it wasn’t those things that I wanted to pin it was the feelings that I wanted to pin.
So I’ll actually link one of my favorite new boards. It’s called the brunette and the beard. And this is a board that I am featuring my just like my dream life like I have recipes on there from everything from cinnamon rolls to spaghetti dishes to cabins in the mountains to cuddles by the campfire with a cowboy like all of the things that I just want to feel things that I can imagine my life feeling like is what I’ve been pinning.
So that’s one of my favorite things to do. Now sometimes when I’m feeling kind of like in a creative rut or something. And our lane I’m laying on the couch just kind of watching Yellowstone or you know just catching up on old shows. I’ll just kind of mindlessly watch TV and then pin and I love trying to create that feeling that I want to live.
Number 15 audiobooks and podcasts on my walk.
So every day I’m walking faith usually, especially now that it’s a lot cooler weather, beautiful weather, sometimes we’re walking three to four times a day, that little girl has tons of energy and I try to regulate it as much as I can. But audiobooks and podcasts are just my my jam like I love absolutely love educating myself especially when I can like kill two birds with one stone. So I’m often listening to podcasts while I am like washing the dishes while I’m folding clothes like before I used to listen to music and that was so like nourishing to me but I also felt like I just kept listening to the same songs over and over again. And I love that I can educate myself I can feel good I can get little sound bites as I’m doing just the mundane tasks.
Number 16 The think tank suitcase. So this always comes in clutch and it is my favorite way to travel. So this think tank is a carry on size. And it’s designed for photographers and videographers in mind because it has like a whole bunch of little holes and like pockets that you can Velcro and move around based on your needs and based on your equipment. But I love it because I don’t know there’s something about it that makes it so sturdy and so safe when I’m traveling. And I love that obviously fits perfectly in the overhead compartments for for most airlines. It has all four wheels on the bottom. This is huge. You guys like please don’t ever buy a suitcase that you plan on traveling with unless it has the four wheels on the bottom because it just makes life, so much easier. And I really love my think tank!
So this is like totally a guilty pleasure like just like literally transparent as a plug for you to know that even this entire podcast and all of my favorite things are totally gonna be linked and affiliate link shared, which just means that I could potentially get a kickback for something that you either were already planning to purchase.
So I love this because it’s a great way for me to support other businesses when they share their favorite things, especially for I would say influencers, friends or other businesses that have tried the products and I truly believe that they’re being genuine about their results or their experience with it. And anytime I can see something that works for someone else, or that they, it comes highly recommended, of course, I’m going to use their link because that means they get a percentage of that for literally something I was going to buy anyway.
And I think this is a healthy reminder that anytime you do see those affiliate links, and you want to support that person, like please use their link, don’t just like get that idea. And then you know, go to the website or click on something else that will lead you to what they’re talking about. And then make a purchase. Like if you’re going to do that. I always try to support the business that’s behind it. So yeah, so that’s a great way that I just, I just love sharing that and full transparency.
I do like I do get a kickback for it. I’m not going to joke like it’s literally pennies to the dollar for some affiliate links that I’m actually getting in return. But it really is a joy. And it’s a great way for me to provide things like this podcast and provide a lot of the free education that we have out there. Because it does help subsidize your income to a certain extent.
So I just think it’s the coolest thing. And I’m really grateful for affiliate links.
Number 18 Slow strolls through target with a Starbucks and my best friend sorry. So we have been doing this literally since high school. And it’s the biggest blessing ever for her to be here in Arizona with us too, I should say that I’m here in Arizona with her because she’s the one that got me out here. And her husband, Mike is the one that moved out here for work, like six or seven years ago, and about three years ago, I moved out here to so just spending time with her strolling through the store, just I don’t know, I, I gotta tell you, these target people really know how to market.
And it’s funny because we were just talking about this the other day to thinking like what makes target target and, you know, what makes them you know, like this cool place to be and where, you know, moms and entrepreneurs just want to like just be there and and truly enjoy that experience. Like, is it the people like is it the consumers that are making this cool? Or is it actually target that is putting out these ads and like putting out these feelings, right?
So like, I love talking about this kind of stuff. And so I love being in businesses like that, that just have a feeling and that can make you feel a certain way. And I always question like, I’m so curious, like question like, but like, Why do you get this feeling here? And like not in Walmart, you know? Or like, Why do you get, like certain feelings like, you know, like Nikes versus Adidas and like Skechers like, why are they so different? Anyway, my mind is going crazy.
It’s been a long day. Let’s keep this list going. I love Target and just kind of walking through there with my bestie.
number 19 bonfires, I am obsessed with bonfires. I love the idea of building a fire I actually am like, really, without sounding too conceited. I’m really good at building fires. I’ve been doing it since I was a little girl, we had a wood burning stove in our home, that was our only source of heat for the longest time when we lived up on the property. And I think it’s more like the feeling kind of getting back to the brunette and the beard board. Like I just love spending time with my family.
I love sipping on you know, my hot chocolate or maybe a margarita or even just, you know, some tea by the, by the fire. And typically there’s some brownies or some chocolate chip cookies that are being passed around. And I just, I just love it. Like I love being around my family and having that feeling of safety and being content. Just chillin, like just sitting there sharing stories as my favorite thing.
Number 20 playing pickleball with my aunts and with my friends, so I don’t know who made pickleball cool, but it is so frickin fun. And if you haven’t done it yet, and you’re local here to Arizona or in California, maybe we can go and make some time to play pickleball it is so freakin fun. So if you don’t know Pickleball is kind of like a combination between tennis and ping pong. And it’s very competitive.
They have some like really weird rules. I mean, there’s like the kitchen which is like the front line. I still don’t know know all the rules like I have to play with my aunt’s again to get it and make it click. So there’s some like funky little rules in there. But it is so fun like you rally at like a volleyball net, right, but it’s lower to the ground. And it’s just so much fun. Like I don’t know, like, especially if you can get a competitive group together. It’s just the best!
Number 21 Love Notes and thank you notes, both sending them and receiving them. I am obsessed with love notes, I feel like it just takes you back in time. It’s so genuine and sweet. And one of the most affordable things you can do to make someone’s day and I don’t even mean like I don’t even mean just make someone’s day but like change their life like knowing that you have taken the time to send a quick thank you note, share your gratitude, share a funny story, thank them for anything, it’s just, it’s just so fun. And I love it.
So I actually have a product in the shop. It’s called this snail mail kit, which is a great like little Kickstarter. They’re just Canva templates. So it’s really affordable to get you started. But in there I have postcard templates. And thank you card. And just little love note templates that are so easy, you can easily download them, upload them quickly to Vistaprint usually where I print them.
I love it because you can personalize it for your business. It’s just so fun. So check that out when you get a chance.
Number 22. I frickin love my car. So I have a 2020 rav4. I’m incredibly proud of myself that it’s already been paid off. And it’s just it’s just so fun. Like it’s a little beat beat car. It’s kind of like that crossover like mini SUV size. It’s perfect for my photography business. It’s perfect for traveling to California if I have to hop on the highway. It’s it’s sturdy enough where I feel safe on the road. But it also gets really killer gas mileage. I’m a big truck girl.
So I grew up driving trucks I grew up my last vehicle was a forerunner. And then before that I had a huge Chevy Blazer, you know, I just I just love my cars, and I love feeling safe in them. And the rav4 is something that is just so dependable. Of course, it’s a Toyota, I’m hoping it lasts forever. And I just really love it. So that is definitely on the list of my favorite things.
Number 23 crystals, Sage sticks, Palo Santo and all the woowoo stuff. I am obsessed with my crystals and Moon water. And I am amazed at how I really believe like it’s not even like, oh, I believe this like if you can, it can be scientifically proven that the crystals actually carry like an energy force. Like there’s actually energy that what does that called him not emulates, but it like it like pushes off of the rocks, right? Like it’s so crazy. And I I just love the healing powers that they have. And maybe it’s in my head, maybe it’s a placebo effect. I don’t know.
But I don’t think so. Like I just, I love it and like so we have a huge Rose Quartz that we keep by the front door of our home. And we love it because it’s symbolic to mean that when you walk into our home, you’re and you know, so Rose Quartz to catch you up is is really, really good for love and like welcoming and feeling accepted. And I just love it because mom always says like, as soon as someone walks into our home, we want them to feel loved, when you want them to feel welcome. We want them to feel accepted as exactly as they are. And just like all those warm and cozy feelings when you walk into like your grandmother’s house, for example.
Hopefully you have a good experience with that. And then of course, so not only are our people receiving love when they enter our home, but then we as we walk out the front door, we are like bringing love out to the world. And I just love that symbol for you know the Rose Quartz so there’s just so many things that the crystals have brought into our lives that I’m just really grateful for.
number 24 This kind of rolls in like you know, a little piggy back to the crystals and fun stuff, but I love hosting fun parties. Creating charcuterie boards which are time are just called antipasti boards.
If you’re a Sicilian, Hey, these are not new. We’ve been doing these like we’ve been eating these other meals for literally centuries. So this is not new to my family, but we love making them fancy and I love bringing friends and family together and I’m kind of obsessed with like making food like so for example this Thanksgiving. Eliana and then my cousin, Ito son Tommy they helped I helped them put together a cute little veggie tray that look like a turkey couple years ago when I was with my girlfriends in the Santa Cruz Mountains celebrating a Friendsgiving I actually made a huge turkey out of fruit.
So I like like legit. I think the the bottom of it was like half of a cantaloupe or something. And then I like shish kebab, a whole bunch of fruit to make the feathers. It was just so fun and the kids got a kick out of it. It was a great way for them to actually and they all love healthy foods, which is amazing. But it was a great way for them to actually eat the fruit. I love making stuff like that. I love turning Pinterest. Some recipes into real life things. Most of them were fails Not gonna lie, but I try. It’s really fun.
Number 25 printing photos, creating albums and gifting photo gifts. So okay, this is another, this is another guilty plug as a photographer, please, please, please print your photos babe, I can’t tell you like how sad it is that your photos are living on your Facebook walls and not in the walls of your home.
So check out episode number 62. It was the recent posts before this, where I share a ton of affordable ideas for your family photos. So even if you’re not a photographer listening like this is your time go check out that episode. And that blog post has a couple of my favorite like places to actually print those gifts that are super affordable, but will be priceless for your family and friends.
Spending time and laughing with my brother and all of my family. We laugh every single day my mom and I crack each other up all day. Don’t get me wrong. Sometimes we drive each other crazy. But for the most part, my brother is like my mom are the funniest people I know. And I love how they can just turn everyday things into jokes. It is not even like a like a make fun of you kind of thing like my family. Still, my family is about that. But we just love like circumstantial humor. I don’t know how to explain it. But we just laugh and everything we do is a good time. So if we had to hop in the car right now, and go to the gas station, we had to do whatever, like it’s just so fun. It is so freakin fun. And I love my brother for that. And I love his sense of humor. And I love that he can make me just feel so comfortable my own skin. And he knows like if something’s off or if something’s wrong.
I frickin love my air fryer. It is so much fun. I love making things crispy and yummy. And reheating pizza has never been the same number 28 College Bound five subject notebooks, I write every thing down everything from my daily tasks to my wildest dreams, to just notes that I want to want to remember and not forget, I’m totally a like pen and paper kind of person. So I love these. And I actually go through about two to three of them a year. Like I’m not I’m not joking when I say that I write everything down. I’m kind of like Rory, from the Gilmore Girls where I don’t like catalogue them or they’re not organized as neatly but I write everything down. And that’s where all my daily checklists go.
HoneyBook is my jam. So it is my CRM, which is my like client, relationship manager like online thing, where I keep everything organized and streamlined. So they take care of my invoices, my contracts, emails, and workflows, and questionnaires and just all of my like client facing things that make me professional, like, they make me look legit. And they can accept credit cards. And it just helps my business stay on track without losing information, missing things. It’s just a great hub for my business. And I’m really, really grateful for our HoneyBook community. It’s not just those things, but it’s the artists, it’s the creatives, it’s the engineers that go with it, that make that community so amazing.
If you’re still listening, thank you, thank you very much. I’m so happy, you’re still here. I love road trips. And once again, spending time with my family. I think I’ve mentioned my family like four or five times already, which is very normal for me that road trips are my favorite, it’s a time for me to check out. It’s a time for me to relax. And especially when I can be surrounded by my favorite people. Like you can literally take me anywhere. And I know that you know sometimes traffic gets involved, but it’s like part of the journey. And I just love it.
I love country music, it is the pretty much the soundtrack of my childhood. And I love it and especially I feel like I don’t know, I I know I’m obviously not a singer but like I like to think of myself in my business. Similar to a country star where like you like that’s entrepreneurship to its core, like you have to put yourself out there you have to put your personality like your life on the line like talk about like becoming your own brand. Like that’s a pretty new concept in my opinion for photographers and small business owners and wedding vendors and you know, like making your face the name of your business is I would say pretty new in this new like online social media era for our industry. Okay, but like country artists or let’s just say singers in general like they’ve had they’ve had to do this since the get go like out the gate.
They were their name. They were their brand. And I just think that’s a beautiful thing to learn from them. So Oh yeah, so I just love following their journeys, witnessing their, their, their heart, and their grit, and their ability to just show up and shine and make the best of everything and, and knowing how much struggle and how much sacrifice it took to get them where they are, it’s just, it’s just so cool to witness.
Okay, this is gonna get oddly specific, but as I’m sitting here recording this podcast, I’m actually looking at my favorite pen. And it is a pilot, G two. And I frickin love these pens, I usually get like the big bundle of the different colors, but they write so frickin well, like they are just like, so smooth. They’re like really good, I would call them like signature pens. So they’re really fun to practice their signature, and they just write really well. And I love them.
I typically write with a purple ink once I went to this like medium slash psychic lady, which is nothing I should have added to my list. I like visiting those sometimes that can be overcompensation. And she mentioned that we should be writing in purple ink, because it really helps like your ideas come through, it helps your your angels and your guides like work through you and through your work and through your writing. So purple ink is really good for that.
Number 33 my business and everyone that it’s connected me to, yes, I’m forever grateful for the freedom fun and all the opportunities that my business has brought, like, I’ve been able to travel the world, thanks to my camera, and thanks to my business. But I can’t even imagine living life without the friends and the soul sisters that I’ve met along the way. Like, this truly has been the biggest blessing for my business and for my livelihood. And, and just like my life in general, like I can’t even imagine like if I decided not to be a photographer. And I simply worked a different job that in a completely different industry, I would not know the people that I know in my life right now. And it would look so different. So I’m just so incredibly grateful for all the opportunities that my camera has brought, especially the people into my life.
. Getting all green lights, and always finding good parking spots. So this is something that has happened, like rather recently. So in the last couple of years, I tried really hard to work on my mindset, like focus on my breathing. And this can be a little woowoo I’m not trying to like change the future or anything. But like when you think of positive thoughts, and you think, like as you’re driving down the road, and you’re thinking like, oh, like, everything comes easy to me, I’m gonna hit these green lights, one after the other one after the other, like things just happen to go smoothly for you.
But if you’re constantly thinking, oh, gosh, there’s so much traffic are we going to hit every single red light, like, you just kind of create this like annoyance for yourself like I’m not even gonna lie. And then same thing with trying to find parking spots. When I have this mindset, like, I’m going to find something I’m not worried about it.
There typically is just one, like right in front. Or maybe where I want to park specifically I don’t always parked right up front and can be too congested. For me, sometimes I’m kind of like an old lady when I park. But I love it because I just like to say don’t think about it. But I just think of ease. And I think of making my life as simple as possible. And things just come easy. I swear. It’s just a mindset shift they all right, if you made it this far, here we go.
Number 35. I’m listing out all my favorite things. And I want to be totally transparent and maybe even a little bit annoying if this like you know rubs you the wrong way. I’m sorry. But I frickin love my life. I love my adventures.
I’m proud of what I’ve accomplished in these last 35 years of my life. And I’m excited to see what what’s to come. And I can honestly say this is a turning 35 thing or this is like now I’m officially in my mid 30s which is just so mind boggling to me. But after all this time, I wholeheartedly can share that I love that I can strive for more, and look forward to my future. Just as much as I love my current reality. This has taken a long time, this has taken a long time of acceptance, of growth of awareness to know that I am accepting myself exactly who I am and what I stand for. And all those things like in my current present, but also like being excited for the future. Right?
I feel like in the past, so if that doesn’t make sense, I feel like in the past, I have spent so much of my life living in the future and living in the past, living in the past wanting to change things wanting to you know, like, you know, maybe have some regrets or think I got kind of got like dealt some bad cards or just feeling like gosh, like this, just this stuff is happening to me and you know, or even just thinking of my childhood where I did have a great childhood and I’m grateful for those moments, but realizing like, God like I don’t, you know, the past doesn’t define me.
So let’s stop living in it. And then always thinking and dreaming of the future has been A big thing for me where that was my safety. That was my happiness. That was, you know, my, like skate goat was like, I didn’t want to live in my present. Because I was so busy thinking of the future. And so I think, I don’t know what it took. I don’t know what it was, maybe it was just this year specifically.
But I really, really do feel that confidence in my own skin. And I’m just grateful for how my life feels today. And I challenge you, I’m not telling you this because it’s like, okay, good for you key, like, that’s fantastic. Like, happy freakin birthday, right? But I’m telling you this because I hope that you’re there. I hope that you feel confident in your own skin that you’re excited for your daily life. And even if it isn’t exactly as you imagined, or exactly as you ever dreamed, like, trust me, it’s not for me, like, I can vouch for that. But it’s, it’s a place of, of acceptance.
And it’s a place of like a gentle reminder that if something is off, or not exactly where you want it to be, it just means you’re not there yet, right just means that while you can love yourself unconditionally, you are trying for a brighter future. So for my birthday this year, I just want to wish you love and acceptance and falling in love with your life. Because when you fall in love with your life, that’s when the magic happens. You invest in yourself, you have more fun you love deeply. And that’s that’s the only thing I can wish for you.
And if you’re still here, and you thought this was fun, and you’d like to hear more episodes, I actually I would love for you to leave a review. I’m trying to hit 35 reviews. By the end of this year. It would mean the world to me if you can just take literally like four seconds, maybe two minutes tops to just write up a quick review on Apple podcast. Tell a friend share it. That would be like the best birthday gift ever. All right, my love. Thank you for listening. Let me know if you had any of these things in common. And I cannot wait to connect with you online and in person. Keep on dancing baby. That’s a wrap on another episode of Kiana Murray weekly. Thank you so much for your listenership and support. You can find the resources and show notes for this episode and more at Kiana murray.com/podcast. I’d be honored if you show your support by leaving a review and rating on your favorite podcast app. Until next time, keep on dancing.