2018: Year In Review

Long time no chat, friends! I hope you all had a wonderful holiday season filled with family, friends, fun, and food. I most certainly did, which is why I haven’t been very active on my social channels nor the blog. I feel as though the holidays are a great time to unplug from the digital world, and focus on the things that mean the most to us. 2018 was a whirlwind to say the least – it started off slowly for the first six months, and then before I knew it, December snuck up on me.

Memories: A Brief Overview

So many incredible things happened this year – I’ve reached new highs and learned so much with Keeping It Kourtney, I’ve seen my boyfriend more than I have in the last 3 years combined since his new move, my little brother graduated from college, and my best friend got engaged! One of my personal achievements this year was this March when I successfully planned and executed my first out of state trade show for work. Additionally, I’ve grown a lot stronger in my faith in recent years, but this year, I made the decision to put it into practice more, which has made a huge positive impact in my daily life.

Lesson Learned: My Biggest Achievement

As much as I hate to admit it, I often find that I compare myself to other bloggers. I’ve based some of my content on things that I think want people to hear, rather than things I’m passionate about, and I allow the opinions of other people to cloud my own judgement of myself and what I should/shouldn’t post out of fear of rejection or criticism. The last two years, I’ve tried desperately to keep up the stereotypical “blogger image”, and pushed out content that I wasn’t 100% happy with just to keep up the consistency. Bottom line: It simply wasn’t me.

Earlier this year, I took the PRISM course by PR Couture, which made me deep dive into what exactly my brand is, and — in turn — who I am and how I want to portray myself to the world through my blog. While I completed the course a few months ago, the projects that I worked on didn’t fully resonate with me until shortly after when I began doubting my blogging ability. I’d been at this for about 5 1/2 years, and I had no paid collaborations or ad posts on Instagram to show for it. There’s nothing that will bring you to a hard stop like doubt and anxiety, and it really made me reflect on my history as a blogger. You know what I discovered? It’s totally okay, because that’s not why I started blogging in the first place.

Writing is my greatest passion, and I love being able to share my thoughts and ideas here. The internet is all about connecting and creating a community, and I’ve decided that I no longer want to push out content just to consistently create content — I want to write with a purpose. That’s why, when I was overcome with doubt, I didn’t give up on blogging. No, I don’t have the most readers nor an abundance of Instagram followers, but is that what this is really all about? Not at all. I decided to let my faith and passion outweigh the fear in me, and continue on because it was something that I love.

Keeping It Kourtney has been my space for nearly six years now, and it’s constantly evolving with me and my life. As a 24 year old woman navigating adulthood with a passion for writing, fashion, beauty, travel, food, and so much more that I haven’t even touched yet, I hope to connect with other like-minded women who can relate to what I’m thinking, doing, and feeling.

Okay, I’ll get off my soapbox now. Needless to say, this was a MAJOR breakthrough for me this year, and I’m beyond proud of myself for overcoming the mental hurdles that tend to accompany blogging and social media.

A Concise Travel Summary

2018 was a big year in travel for me. Between return trips to places like Chicago and Mackinac Island to new locations including Atlanta and Vegas, my wanderlust was definitely fulfilled. In February, I partook in a road trip to Chicago with my mom, brother, and family friends to Chicago to see Hamilton. March took me to Atlanta, Georgia for a trade show for work. I flew out to visit my boyfriend in Maryland this May, where I returned to Frederick and Washington D.C., but also got to explore Baltimore and — one of my new favorites — Annapolis. Our family road trip in June provided me the chance to relish the beauty of my home state, and return to Traverse City and Mackinac Island. My final trip of the year was to Las Vegas this October; while it was a short trip, we had a blast and I can’t wait to return in 2019.

In Closing…

Thank you for sharing another year with me in my little corner of the internet. I may not post as much as I’d like to balancing work and family life, but if there is anything my readers take away from this particular post, it’s that I fully intend on putting my best foot forward coming into the new year. 2019 is bringing out the raw, unadulterated part of me that I’ve been itching to put out there for a while, but didn’t know how. I look forward to sharing this with you in the years to come.

Cheers to the new year!

-K.

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Giving Thanks

Giving Thanks

As I reflect on the past year, I realize what all I have to be grateful for. This past year has been quite the roller coaster ride for me, but I wouldn’t be the person I am today with out those trials, successes, anxieties and everything in-between.

  • My Parents// First and foremost I owe my parents the world. I wouldn’t be the person I am today without their constant encouragement, love, and support in everything I undertake. You guys inspire me to work harder everyday and be the best version of myself. I can’t thank you enough for the sacrifices you have made for the boys and I. Every minute spent with you both is a reminder of how loved I am, and how honored I am to be your daughter.
  • My Brothers// Owen and Ethan, thank you for bringing intense laughter and an unusual sense of humor to everyday occurrences. I’m so lucky that we share such a strong sibling bond that I know will never falter regardless of the circumstances. Thank you also, for not being born female because we all know I don’t share so I don’t think that we would be as tight as we are.

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    La Famille
  • My Extended Family// Although this year has been plagued with a slew of health issues, I’m so thankful that we all managed to band together through the tough times, and allowed our faith to be bigger than our fears.
  • Ryan// My rock, my love, thank you for pushing me to believe in myself when I was at my lowest, and for always loving me unconditionally. Everyday, we grow stronger together and I cannot wait to see how we flourish as a couple. The miles between us seem so small when you care about someone so immensely. I truly am the luckiest woman in the world.
  • Kelsey// Although we don’t see each other as much as we used to or would like to, whenever we are together, it’s like nothing ever changed. Thank you for the memories, laughs, not judging me (especially freshman year when I thought I was losing my mind & in my rebellious stage), the list goes on and on, but, above all, thank you for 16 years of friendship and many more to come. I’m so proud of you for kicking major ass in the nursing program; you’re going to be an absolutely amazing nurse!
  • My Sorority Sisters// Where to being? Thank you for inspiring me everyday. Thank you for giving me confidence and leadership skills that will last a lifetime. Thank you for giving me sisters I never had. Thank you for life-long friendships and memories. A thousand thanks to Eugenia, Ella, Sophronia, Octavia, Elizabeth, and Mary for courageously starting an amazing legacy that will live on forever.

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    My Alpha Class
  • Vitality Dance Team// Thank you for a second chance at doing what I love, and giving me such a fabulous team of women with such immense drive and passion. I don’t really know what I’m going to do after graduation without dance in my life, but I definitely will never stop doing what I love.

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    OU Vitality Dance

While I could go on and on about how much my life has been impacted, I’ll save that for a later date. These are just a few of the major things that have aided me in my growth this past year in spectacular ways.

What are you thankful for this year?

-K

Favorite Halloween & Horror Movies

Favorite Halloween & Horror Movies

Hi All & Happy (almost) Halloween!

In honor of the holiday, I decided to share with you some of my favorite Halloween & horror movies to bust out this week. Some from my childhood, some terrifying, but all excellent. I am not a fan of extreme gore that they try to pass off as “scary,” I’m looking for the horror movies that actually make me scared to go to sleep at night.

Hocus Pocus

 Mom’s Got a Date with a Vampire

Don’t Look Under the Bed

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Disturbia

Ghost Ship

Sleepy Hollow (1999, with Johnny Depp)

The Amityville Horror

The Conjuring

Constantine

Insidious

Tower of Terror

Additional Best TV Show: American Horror Story

Did your favorite make the list? Comment below and let me know if I should check out some of your favorites this Halloween.

-K