Charlotte Tag

my. very. big. news!

Does a few days mean 2+ months to you? I didn’t think so, me either. But life always steps in, and here we are again so long between posts, even though I promised you some very big news “in a few days,” – back on August 25th.

(Let’s be real…it’s probably always going to be like this. We all wish there were more hours in a day:)

So, onto the VERY BIG NEWS!

For about the past 20 years, I’ve been told I would be an amazing one, that I would “love it” and that it would be a perfect fit for me. I always said, nah, I don’t think I want that. I really rejected the idea of this thing for a very long time for no good reason.

Then? Over the past several years and many many experiences, added to the place I’ve grown to now, a huge shift has happened, so I can’t believe I am sharing this with you all, but…

I’M GETTING MY REAL ESTATE LICENSE!!!

You didn’t think I was going to tell you I was pregnant, did you?

(HA! I had to mess with you there leading into this news because so many throughout my life have told me they wished I had babies.)

Yes, it’s OFFICIAL! I have finished my real estate classes and I’m just 1 test away from being able to help you rent, buy, or sell a home! (And yes, anywhere in the country, but I’ll get more into that in a later post.) By the time you’re stuffing your face with Thanksgiving turkey, this Blue Lollipop Road will be a licensed agent.

Can I get a WHOOP WHOOP?!

Insert nerd alert photo shoot here with me and my slim 886 page book. Crazy face included:

Do you notice anything in these photos you haven’t seen on me before?

Take a minute to do a little Where’s Waldo-ing.

In the meantime, I will say that I’m THRILLED to jump in and now be able to handle the last piece of what I haven’t been professionally/legally able to handle for clients during the big life transition processes I have been managing all these years…

the HOUSE piece! (Condo, apartment, etc. included.)

I’ve been a part of real estate transactions each week for years and years at this point through proximity/planning/osmosis during client projects, and I’ve seen the really good, the really bad, and the very, very ugly. It’s been frustrating at points to not have my license to be able to directly help friends, family, and clients through and with renting, buying, or selling. The good thing is, it’s at least been a little easier for me to be involved on this next level real estate thing over the past couple years, since my husband is a broker.

Did she just say…HUSBAND?!

Yep.

(I asked you if you saw anything different on me in the above photos. There’s a ring on my finger:)

I GOT MARRIED!!!

Well hot diggity, there’s big exciting news coming from every direction now!

(If you look closely, there are 2 blue lollipops in my bouquet.)

We were married exactly a YEAR ago, (see date in the sand?) in a tiny town in South Carolina with only 1 other person in the room (the one who was marrying us), on a Friday morning with a slight chill in the air, then drove straight to Hilton Head Island where we had been engaged a few months earlier. The goal was to have toes in the sand with bubbly in hand by sunset, and it turned out perfect. Beach, bubbles and sunset were the only things we planned, and strong mojo took care of the rest, including temperatures warming throughout the day, and the one random stranger walking on the beach who took these amazing photos with our old iPhone. All we said was “Hi! We just got married! Would you mind taking a few photos? Just quick shots…whatever you think. Thanks!”

How fabulous that a few snaps on a cell phone could’ve captured such a special day so beautifully.

One other little addition to the wedding day story to illustrate how mojo works? We had written vows and said them to each other that morning when we actually got married, and wanted to read them to each other again alone when we made it to the beach and popped our bubbles. We made it to the resort and out to the beach, set up our blanket, bubbles in hand, and Jason read his vows to me again, then I read mine to him. At the EXACT moment I finished my words, and we said cheers! – a huge roar of clapping and woo-hoo-ing erupted behind us from the place we were staying. There was another couple getting married that day at the event venue, and we had seen them upon our arrival setting up. As we were making our way out to the beach, it looked like they were about to start. They must’ve hit their “And now you may kiss the bride!” moment, right as we finished our second reading of our vows, too, sitting on our blanket in the sand. It was such a cool moment.

I love, love.

We never made any kind of formal announcement about getting hitched, so there you have it, 1 year later, coupled (see what I did there?) with a huge professional update/real estate licensure news!

We thought we may have a big huge happy shindig celebration in July this past summer, but you know…COVID, so we shall see what the future holds as far as us all shin-digging together to officially toast our marriage. This might be a long series of micro-shindigs. We’re good with that. We love good old fashioned quality time with friends and family in small groups.

My husband’s name is Jason. We grew up in the same Vermont small town, but didn’t even know each other or meet until the summer of 2017. I lived and traveled around the country and globe all those years, and my person not only ends up being from my same town, but I met him there, too?

Tell me you don’t believe in the mojo (magic) that can happen.

I’m one excited cookie to now be able to take all my collective years of life and professional experience, team up with Jason, and his, and help so many people reach the place and lifestyle they want.

Oh yeah…and that whole anniversary celebrating thing today as well of course.

A toast:

To staying open, and curious, and always learning. To not being afraid to walk away from something to walk to the next. To getting creative, to loving your work, and to chasing dreams. To following your heart and finding your best friend. To respecting the clock, to letting love rule, and to always keep looking up.

Cheers!

#TodayIsTheDay #AlwaysLookingUp #LifeOutsideTheDroneZone

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back to school already?!

Y’all! (Like that southern charm?) It has been a BIII-ZEEEEEEEE (busy) summer! Holy guacamole. (Love that stuff.)

Humongo projects with downsizing 5,000 sq ft houses, travels to Vermont, for fun, family, and other, Pro Athlete client move across the country (hello flying for work…so fun and yes, sky miles, and wow lots of shoes), weddings, graduations, retirement celebrations, preparing client homes to go on the market, our birthdays and engagement (wha?!), off to Florida and overseas shortly, and did I mention more work, meetings, work, meetings, and boom, its nearly September?

30 seconds of summer!

At least I made it to the gym today before yet another work meeting with my partner in crime, at the coolest place that’s opened in Charlotte since Charlotte became Charlotte. (Ok, so the USNWC is a super awesome favorite as well.) Messy, frizzy hair don’t care:

When you work for yourself, you’re a hustla, baby. Sometimes you change in a bathroom, and have to go without a shower after getting your sweat on, so you can fill your pipeline with next opportunities. Sometimes weeks pass without a break, then you take a big one. Sometimes you wonder how you haven’t come up for your own air, and then realize it’s because you’ve been filling client lungs with what they need to breathe.

We help people get unstuck. We LOVE what we do. We declutter lives to clear paths for whatever’s next for the people who hire us, dealing with the most stressful all-consuming times they might ever have. (Then WE are all-consumed.) When we are on 24/7, we know we’re making a difference by being the trusted guide by someones side when they often don’t even know what end is up. It’s exhausting at times, but after we get the red carpet rolled out for our clients next adventures, we always make time for our own.

What’s next for you?

We hope your summer was BIII-ZEEEEEEEE (busy…the good kind) like ours. We also hope that you won’t ever be afraid to go out with messy hair so you can keep creating the life you want.

#LoveYourWork #LifeOutsideTheDroneZone #LessWaitingMoreDoing

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a minimalist and a maximalist walk into a bar…

I just read this article a friend posted on her Facebook feed, then sent it to someone I thought it would be helpful to, for a project he’s working on. After the link in the email, I added:

Some people like stuff, and a lot of times, stuff does tell stories. I however, hate stuff, and I’d rather be the one telling stories, but either way, we can all get along…

Being a minimalist, childless, single gal from Vermont with a nomadic heart, and because I’m in the business of helping people get unstuck, I’ve been accused of:

1.) Suggesting everyone burn everything they own.

2.) Eating granola 3 meals a day.

3. Wanting all the people around me to move into a tiny house.

Laughing? You didn’t get the memo that all “hippies” from states like Vermont who don’t find it particularly fun or comforting to shop or have large living spaces, must think anyone else who could possibly like Target, or reside in more than 200 square feet is a terrible person? I’m laughing too. Yes, ridiculous, and certainly not the opinions I share.

Some of my besties have the biggest houses I’ve ever been in, and peruse through Home Goods like it’s their job. Some have shelves littered with books, and tchotchkes like your favorite auntie, or garages full of gear, and some could have thriving careers in interior design their spaces look so amazing with all the stuff they’ve collected. In fact, the person’s feed I took this article from is one of those longtime friends who every place she’s ever lived in, has been filled with beautiful decor floor to ceiling in each room, perfectly fit to her personality and experiences from her adventurous life. The kind of spaces you walk in to that transport you to a far of land and make you want to ask a zillion questions about everything you see. I love these homes, but I don’t want to live in them. These people wouldn’t want to live in my home, either.

Isn’t it great that we all have the choice to live exactly how we want?

A recent client was in her home 30 years, and she was more than ready to downsize from over 3,300 square feet:

(If you’re a Broker in Charlotte, come join us tomorrow, Wednesday June 26th for a luncheon from 11:30AM – 1:30PM at this house currently on the market!)

I got this client downsized and into her next perfectly fitting for this time in life, space, with every last bit of decor she wanted to take with her. She told me what she needed, and I was her guide along each step of the way. My job is to show up when clients take a step towards the life they want, and advise and support them…not try to change them.

Whether you’re a maximalist or a minimalist; YOU DO YOU. Figure out what lifestyle you want, and go for it. Time waits for no one, so whether you spend your 365 days a year in the same pair of shorts and live in a van so you can have the freedom to roam, whether you redecorate your McMansion every season to be the place with the capacity and currency to host all the people you love, or anything in between, use your time wisely enough that you still have a little bit left to celebrate every day.

#RespectTheClock #LifeOutsideTheDroneZone #TodayIsTheDay

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abandon ship!

I mean…abandon crap!

It’s Saturday afternoon. We’ve just finished up another project helping a client take back control of their life, and I’m finally having a few quiet minutes at my desk. Shocker I’m thrilled to have some time to read articles about lifestyle and minimalism that have popped in my inbox recently. I’m adopting the following as the quote of my month of February. It makes me cheer and imagine high-fiving all the soon-to-be clients I will repeat it to:

“Never underestimate the importance of abandoning crap you don’t need. It has the power to change your life dramatically.”

We got this sweet card in the mail from a client we worked with a few weeks ago:

We helped this client abandon a LOT of crap. No, her lifelong items bought with hard-earned money were not garbage, but they were things she no longer needed/wanted/used, and they were holding her back from moving on to the next adventure in life she wants to be on. So? We said peace out, crap! as we waved goodbye and thank you to the donation truck and driver from AMVETS.

(Did I mention how much we love our clients and they become like family?)

Circling back to today…

I just texted one of the realtors I work with and told him the first thought that popped in my head the instant my eyes opened this morning was I wonder if the donation truck has picked up the items from the house yet. The house I’m referring to is the one we prepped for market ready this week. Photos are being taken on Monday, and the house is officially up for sale next weekend. Most people on a Saturday morning would be waking up thinking of coffee, a honey-do list, kids sports games to get to, or who’s turn it is to cook the bacon. My 24/7 thoughts are constantly trying to come up with more ideas on how I can help those around me abandon more crap, so they can seamlessly get to where they’re trying to be.

Can you imagine trying to wake up and get dressed and out the door to your job, or get your kids off to school after walking into your closet looking like this?

If you can’t find your socks, how can you find your sanity in this busy life?

The above photos are from the Blue Lollipop Road collection of before and after. In this case, the “after” aren’t even fully complete, but you get the idea. The before are the reason I wake up thinking about abandoning crap and donation trucks. They also make my head hurt thinking of how stressed I’d be if that was the closet I attempted to dress myself in on a daily basis. No wonder why everyone in America is beeping and angry by the time they reach the Starbucks drive through at 7:30AM Monday – Friday.

IF YOU HAVE LESS CRAP. YOU HAVE LESS CRAP TO MAINTAIN.

Doesn’t that sound so freeing?

ABANDON THE CRAP AND CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

I promise, it works, and we can help you:)

Maybe tomorrow I’ll wake up thinking only about bacon…

#LessStuffMoreFreedomHappyLife #LiveSimpleDoMore #KnowYourInventory

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join me tomorrow: downsizing

Luxury Home builder, Toll Brothers has asked me to come for a 3rd time to host a downsizing seminar for their prospective and recent home buyers. Tomorrow (Saturday February 8, 2019) I will be at their Regency at Palisades location, just outside of Charlotte, NC. I was at this property last year and LOVED it. During my first visit, I asked the ladies in the office, Is this where our parents move to have more fun than we do?! Pool, golf, club house with chef’s kitchen, tennis and bocce courts, massage therapist, fitness center, and more…and all on site? Yes, please. This community is designed for an active lifestyle. (Didn’t you know 60 is the new 30?)

So what happens tomorrow? I will casually sit and have a conversation in the gorgeous open living room/kitchen/dining area one of the model homes. I’ll advise on how to declutter a lifetime of “stuff,” and plan for a path to more freedom and fun. The Palisades homes are not tiny homes, they’re between 1,700 – 2,400 square feet. Downsizing doesn’t mean living in zero space, it means living simple so you can DO more. It means clearing the chaos from your life, so you have MORE time, space, and money. It means stepping out of the Drone Zone, and getting unstuck.

Are you ready to make a change?

You know I love to talk. Come sit on a couch with me and let’s chat about your next chapter…

#LessStuffMoreFreedomHappyLife #LiveSimpleDoMore #Downsize

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it’s never too late

I had a great lunch today at Charlotte’s brand new “55 and better” community, Overture Cotswold! I left behind a free consultation certificate, in the form of a jar of blue lollipops of course:

Happy Blue Lollipop Jar

The Overture staff asked me to come talk to new and perspective tenants and I jumped at the chance. I love this building and their concept of apartment life kicked up a notch with amazing amenities. What’s not to love about simplifying your lifestyle at any age, especially once you’ve raised kids, taken care of the lawn for 20 years, replaced the water heater a few times, or looked around wondering why you have 3 spare rooms that never get used?

As I spoke with this group, I told them most of my clients say the same 3 things:

1.) I didn’t realize I had so much crap. (They laughed.)

2.) I can’t believe I didn’t do this sooner.

3.) I feel so much more free!

If you’re considering a lifestyle change including a whole lot more time for friends, family, travel, and fun…consider an option like this. Did I mention they have weekly happy hour in the club room? Walking downstairs in your sweatpants to have a little toast and social time with your neighbors at the end of the day sounds good to me!

60 is the new 30. There are no rules that say you have to stop dancing just because you have a few wrinkles.

#LessStuffMoreFreedomHappyLife #LiveSimpleDoMore #ImNotOnVacationILiveHere

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celebrate everyday: day 24

1.24.18

Today I celebrate entrepreneurs, because it takes a lot to keep the hustle going when you work for yourself:

Advent Coworking F*ck Up Night

Advent Coworking F*ck Up Night

I went to F*ck Up Night a Advent Coworking tonight. F*ck Up Night is, you guessed it…an event where a panel of entrepreneurs share their stories about how they got to where they are, and all their f*ck ups along the way.

The kind of passion, drive, and hustle it takes to work for yourself is not for the weak or tired, to say the least. There’s a whole lot of regular “Why don’t you just go get a real job?” and other ridiculous opinions we’ve all heard, as we scrape the last penny out of the bank account, put in another late night, and wake up early to pound the pavement again. Those things would make most people break down and cry like babies. (And we have at times.) But! Figuring out ways to navigate this crazy world and make a living doing what you love and believe in so hard core, even your hero couldn’t talk you out of doing it? That, is pretty f*cking awesome. And totally worth the expenditure of those blood, sweat, and tears days.

NEVER GIVE UP!

Does something you overhear in a conversation at a cocktail party make you want to jump over the appetizer table, knocking over the hostess as you spill your martini, just so you can be talking about it, too? I think you’ve found your thing, baby. Go for it.

You know what you love to do. It’s ok to feel like you want to punch someone in the face next time they tell you you’re nuts to chase the life you want. You don’t have to punch them, just keep looking straight ahead, and let all that bs outside noise fall far behind you.

What lights your fire?

#LoveYourWork #StartDriving #LifeOutsideTheDroneZone

*Ready to join the hustler club, but don’t know where to start? Call me! (804.339.6514) I can help.

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celebrate everyday: day 17

There’s a WHOLE BIG world out there…

Today I celebrate airports:

CLT Airport

I love being at the airport people watching, especially coming off a flight and walking to the exit or baggage claim with my fellow travelers and watching the greetings and reunions that happen. Such awesome happy moments to share in, even with complete strangers.

Are you missing someone? Buy yourself a plane ticket and go fly the friendly skies to see them. You’ll never regret it.

Today is the day, what are you waiting for?

#HopToIt #RespectTheClock #AdventureAwaits

*Need someone to convince you to just go? Call me! (804.339.6514) I can help.

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celebrate everyday: day 12

Today I celebrate businesses that have a sense of humor:

Funny Signs

I took this at my favorite brewery. Wouldn’t it be great if everyone had this much fun at work?

When’s the last time you had a Friday cheers?

#AlwaysLookingUp #LessStuffMoreFunHappyLife #CraftBeer

*Feeling stuck? Need to laugh a little more? Call me! (804.339.6514) I can help.

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celebrate everyday: day 5

1.5.18

I went to booty shaking (technical term) class this morning, as usual (have to support the bread, cheese, and chocolate habit), and as soon as I got out, I saw a voicemail on my phone from a client. My initial uh-oh thought was because I knew this was a day I had set up a vendor to work with this client and I wasn’t going to be there. Did I forget to do something?! I played her voicemail with a slight cringe, hoping not:

“Diane! Hey it’s (name), I just wanted to tell you that the guys from Junkluggers are the nicest people I’ve ever met. They’re unbelievable! I just wanted to let you know, I love these guys!”

The Junkluggers are a vendor of mine. I send them to clients often, to do moves or junk removal. Since the first time I met the owners, they have been nothing but friendly, efficient, communicative, timely, and helpful. So incredibly professional.

Customer service seems pretty terrible these days. It’s a total bummer. It’s hard to go to a restaurant and get a smiley server, and too often the check out clerk is just plain miserable. I wonder why so many people look like they’d rather be doing anything else other than their job, and then I think of the fact that even though I’m 39 years old, my mother would smack me if I put in any less that A+ effort in my work life/with a client. You treat people with respect and hospitality, right? And keep cranking until things are done appropriately, right? Always. That’s what these guys do, and never fail.

My client thought the Junkluggers crew were some of the nicest people on planet, because they are. They’re nice, they get the job done, and best of all, I never have to worry in a bit that their service will be anything less than impeccable. It feels fantastic to be able to have that level of confidence in a vendor. I’m so thankful for this crew! The Junkluggers

Moving and junk removal are not glamorous, so extra high-fives to these guys for doing the “dirty” work, and smiling every minute along the way.

Today I celebrate good customer service, and being able to take comfort in the people I trust most to go into the homes of my clients during big life transitions.

Thanks, guys!

Who are you choosing to work with?

#LoveYourWork #KeepSmiling #LessStuffMoreFreedomHappyLife

*Need some help during your big life transition? Call me! (804.339.6514) I can help.

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