Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Christmas Is A Time For Giving

I used to do something called Giving Is Awesome at the holidays to gift portraiture and services to people who were deserving and nominated by someone who recognized them. Over the years I stopped it because people were asking others to nominate them and I didn't feel that was in the spirit of the holidays. I give gift certificates out for Chinese auctions and other fundraising efforts, and on occasion surprise people I see and recognize for having grace and strength in tough situations. I can't always give everything I'd like to give, but I give what I can. It's something I can do all year long and I know those people aren't asking for portraits. It is just something nice I've been lucky enough to be able to share with them.

 On Christmas Eve I was able to share it again with my friend, Emily, who I watched persevere through a tough 2015. She's an awesome mom and wonderful woman who I'm so glad to count as a friend!

 Anyways, so I've been helping with her kids and we had a surprise shoot last Tuesday. On Christmas Eve I was able to share them with her and this is what she had to say about her family. These are some of my favorite shots. .

"2015 has been a very difficult year for us as a family, we are so lucky to have each other. We are stronger, braver and more resilient than I ever imagined.
My kids are such strong, beautiful, spirited, intelligent, amazing little souls. I wake up and fight every single day for them."

These are some of my favorite shots. 

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Small Business Profile on Sage + Arrow (Subtitle: Oh, hello there... Yes, I'm still around and kickin'!)

Its been three years since I updated, I know. Its been crazy busy around here, what with having a 5 year old, giving birth to some beautiful twins in 2014, a couple of very busy businesses and a happy social life. I hope you're well and on the path you wanted for yourself as we swing on into 2016! One of my business resolutions is going to be to update this 'ole blog about once a week, including what I hope will be bi-weekly small business profiles- a kind of getting to know my neighbor small business, if you will.

 To start this series of 26 profiles I'd like to begin with introducing you to my soulful friend Nicole, from Sage + Arrow, Her business and products are the embodiment of this beautiful, warm, and loving woman, and can be found online and at several local businesses (Phoenix Rising Therapeutic Massage is one I'm hoping to check out soon because what photographer doesn't need some R+R right after the holidays??). She has a busy Instagram where she often posts flash sales for fans and her Facebook often features pictures of her wildly adorable family communing with nature when they're not working.

 So Nicole came over one morning with some of her amazing products and we had a nice chat and she answered some questions about S+A for me. (And read about 60 books to the twins while I shot because they just did not think nap time was seriously going to happen that afternoon.) Let's jump in, shall we?

Q. Who are you?

 A. Sage + Arrow, sacred healing apothecary.

Nicole, owner and all around beautiful soul behind Sage + Arrow

Q. What do you do?

 A. I create products for bath, body, mind, and soul. I'm dedicated to making offerings from Mother Earth's finest gifts. Always all organic, vegan, and fair trade.

Men's line inspired by Nicole's own burly husband includes soaks, beard balms, aftershaves, salves and more

Q. When and how did you start your business?

 A. In 2014 I realized I could share the items I made for my loved ones with everyone around me. I feel driven to provide people with moments of self-love, rituals... like so many before us. In a world so engulfed in busy, I believe we desperately need to connect with the Earth and ourselves.

Mermaid Spray on the left for the beachy waves you want without the harsh chemicals you don't want
Full Moon Healing Oil on the right is a sacred blend of  Earth oils and quartz to cleanse and calm

Q. What are your favorite things about your own products?

 A. They work! These are products I've used daily for years; they soothe, center, and fulfill your need, whatever it may be. I love how they're created so purely yet can convince customers to switch brands after one use!

Mellow Mermaid Bath Soak on the left ensures relaxed vibes with Himalayan salt, lavender, chamomile, and calendula.     Blissful Bath Melt (right) provides ultimate moisture, healing, and relaxation to melt your troubles away. 

Q. How does your business give back or serve your community?

 A. Sage + Arrow donates baskets to charity monthly, I also hos new and full moon ceremonies which create a healing ritual space for women. Also, I'm a post-partum doula and use my products to promote wellness in new mothers.

Baby Love Bath Powder is formulated to soothe rashes, irritated skin, or even a generally fussy baby. Make it part of your baby's routine with Baby Bliss Bath Tea.

Q. What's new and exciting for the business?

 A. In 2016 S+A will be featured in a second Vegan Cuts box.

This lemon oil infused exfoliating scrub helps eliminate mental fatigue, stress, and anxiety with it's Vitamin C packed punch. Hibiscus helps eliminate inflammation and provides beneficial antioxidants. 

Q. What are your Sage + Arrow goals?

 A. I want to continue providing a healing space for women in our community with my new and full moon ceremonies... to create a deep and loving community while promoting self-love and care.

Organic Coffee Face and Body Scrub (my new favorite!) is made with coffee for improving circulation and minimizing the appearance of skin imperfections, coconut oil to moisturize, and Himalayan sea salt for it's therapeutic properties for skin.

Q. What do you wanna be when you grow up?

 A. A woman who chased every passion in her soul, a kind and whole woman who never stops learning or giving love to those around her.

Winter Woods Shampoo and Soap Bar is made of hand-crafted shea butter soap, infused with balsam fir, pine and eucalyptus aids in rejuvenation of the body and mind, boosts the immune system, and strengthens the respiratory system. 

 Follow Nicole and S+A on Instagram and on Facebook