Happy Wednesday! Can you believe 2016 will be here in just 2 days? I don't know about you, but today I feel like celebrating! 2015 has been a sensational and game-changing year for us, and likewise our clients and colleagues. As I reflect on all the weddings, soirees, accomplishments and lessons learned this year, I used the 2015 Best Nine app to recap our year...or at least our year on my favorite social media app, Instagram!

In looking at our top 9 pictures from Instagram, there is a theme that I'm proud ran consistent...work/life balance! As an entrepreneur, wife, mom, friend, daughter, lover of weddings and soirees, supporter of my clients,  and much more, maintaining balance is key in achieving success and happiness. While every year brings its own set of achievements and challenges, I've learned both are needed for our growth and betterment. Sensational Soirees has had an amazing year, and some key things 2015 brought were:

  1. Focus on Education - Talk about taking learning up a notch this year! Apart of any new or seasoned professional's growth and journey is education. Therefore, I took the time this year to not only expand on my current skillsets, but also explore new interests. As a wedding and event planner, I have a natural love for beautiful floral arrangements. Through some amazing workshops this year, I have also developed a love for floral design thanks to the instruction of Petals Edge, Intrigue Design and Decor, and Love Blooms DC. I also took part in entrepreneurial courses, Introduction to Calligraphy and more! I'm excited for even more learning opportunities, workshops and conferences next year, and encourage you to maintain a commitment to expanding your knowledge.
  2. Getting Personal - I started off this year with a renewed focus on the Sensational Soirees brand, what it represents and why I started this journey in the first place. In an industry and area saturated with tons of event planners, it's important to get your unique message across and share about the person(s) behind the brand. So I did just that, this year! For so long, I hid behind a logo not realizing that sharing "me" was important for my business, our brand and our clients. Sharing more of me, my favorites, and inspirations, while maintaining professionalism and business interests, has been key in getting my messaging out there and building relationships with potential and existing clients and colleagues.
  3. Community Over Competition - I truly love supporting and celebrating others not just in my personal life, but also in business. It was instilled in me as a child that what's for me is for me and to do unto others as I would want them to do to me. Likewise, as a business owner I love hearing of others successes, and hitting that "like" button or commenting on others good news and posts, just like I appreciate when support is given to me. In addition to spreading love, it is a joy to receive and share advice and expertise with others. I value groups like the Rising Tide Society who encourage creatives and entrepreneurs to thrive in the spirit of community over competition. This year, I have connected with some pretty amazing and supportive folks through communities like Refine, Savvy Business Owners, #ontheroadtofulltime, and more...so thankful for my new online and local friends and "friendors".
  4. New Website and Systems - I am still over the moon about our website redesign!! Where would we be if it wasn't for Britney Jeanine and Go Live HQ, who made our site sensational! As I said before, properly conveying my brand this year was a must, and this new website has definitely sealed the deal. In addition to the website, we also streamlined our business processes thanks to Aisle Planner, 17Hats and Canva. I could truly go on and on about how amazing these tools have been for us and our clients, but I promise to share more about these great systems in a future post for all my fellow event planners and business owners! #communityovercompetition ;-)
  5. Sensational Weddings + Soirees - Of course, this year has been filled with absolutely sensational events! The planning and design process and seeing each client's happy face means everything to me. I'm so grateful to do what I love, and be apart of making beautiful memories for the amazing folks who trust us to do a sensational job. I invite you to look through our galleries, Instagram page and blog for highlights from this year's weddings and soirees. We are currently booking for 2016, and encourage you to get on our calendar soon. I would love to be apart of your 2016 celebrations!

I hope your 2015 has been amazing, and encourage you to finish this year out strong! Tell me one of your 2016 goals in the comments section. For our last blog post of the year, I leave you with the profound words of Maya Angelou below.

Sensationally yours,

Shalyce

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