At this time of year I am always reminded of a few key days and one of them is my Glitter Birthday. Today Sprinkle of Glitter is 6 years old. Isn't that crazy? It feels like both the blink of an eye but also a lifetime. A world without it feels impossible to imagine but also I feel like the journey is just beginning and I still haven't had time to take it all in and adjust.
Thank you chummyswift.
In 6 years my life has changed in almost every way.
Every year I like to look back and assess where this glitter has taken us and feel proud of the work we have done together, because it is together. You might not know it or feel it but we are a team. We have a symbiotic relationship. Without me you wouldn't have the videos or books or clothing line or live shows, but, without you, I wouldn't have anyone to do those things for and so operations would halt and we'd be in a pickle. I am now and forever your very grateful and humble team mate. <3
This year Sprinkle of Glitter has been quite a life raft for me. An incredibly exciting and showbiz glitzy life raft but a life raft all the same.
Thank you themallorymiller.
Let's talk real stuff and then get onto the glamour.
This was the year my heart broke.
It broke very slowly and then all at once and then I felt like I couldn't catch my breath and would never be OK again. Sometimes, in the small hours of the morning when it's very quiet and there is nothing to listen to but my own thoughts, I still wonder if I'll be OK again. I think I will.
Five years ago I married the great love of my life, Matt. I planned our lives and trusted that we would sail through and be on each others teams until we were old and grey (grey with pink tips I hope haha). But, like everything in life, things don't always pan out as you imagine and my great love story crumbled to a point where I couldn't pick up all the pieces and put them back together again. It felt like trying to hold a million tiny pieces and never really being able to keep them all in your hands at once.
I tried and he tried. We tried every way we knew how but eventually, I gave up. I couldn't do it. We were so far apart that the life of mostly good with a few bad moments felt mostly bad with a few good moments and I didn't think that was enough. I knew we deserved better and I knew the little life we were raising needed to see better too.
Thank you sugglet.
I have never in my whole life felt like more of a failure than I have this year. It will forever be my greatest sadness. I'm crying as I write this. I'm crying for all the hurt Matt and I have both felt and the hurt I think I will always feel in a quiet, hidden part of my heart.
Neither of us are to fault and neither of us did an awful thing, so it's such painful grieving because there is nothing huge to be angry at. It's just sorrow.
Thank you starshiprichterranger.
As the months have gone by, things have softened. I'm coming to terms with being the only adult on my team and I'm happy for the new life Matt is building too. For the most part we get on really well. We bicker (a hangover from our married days I think) but really, I know we both share the same goal of raising a good girl, constantly demonstrating that she is loved and supported and happily, we are finding a new way to love each other. I will always love Matt. He will always be my family, just not in the way we had originally planned.
So, as you can imagine, this year has been rough. I've tried to limit how much of that I share and to focus on the good (which has been there in abundance) but I thought it would be a disservice to gloss over it in a post like this. It's been hard, life does and will move on.
On to the glitz. Good gracious there has been a lot.
Thank you phan-girl004.
The blog year (Sept-Sept) began with a myriad of projects that I had to keep under wraps. I spent hours and days and weeks holed up in my bedroom writing my book, Life With A Sprinkle of Glitter. I thought it would be an easy project that blissfully filled cosy Autumn evenings and that I'd have sent off finished to my Editor by Christmas. How wrong I was.
Writing a book is a big deal. It's a whole job. It's incredibly mentally consuming and takes a lot more effort than I had originally anticipated. So, it was with quite a shock that I found myself struggling and beginning to resent it. As Christmas rolled round and it was apparent I was going to spectacularly miss the December deadline, I was given a 3 month extension and my excitement and vigour returned. Book writing became a joy again and something to feel passionate about.
I wrote the book, predominantly focusing on happiness, during one of the least happy times of my life. It forced me to find good on dark days and to look at life with positivity instead of wallowing in the pain of heartbreak.
When I hold my book or see others holding it too, I feel a surge of emotion I would never have had if it hadn't have been hard to write or if I hadn't have been travelling down a painful road at the time. You can be pleased with things that were easy but you can be proud of things that were hard.
To me, my book is a triumph. It is a symbol of how much I can do and what I can achieve. I hope it is the first of many.
Thank you lovetheyoutubelife.
In Spring 2015 I felt a spark of new life. I'd told you all that was going on and felt a little more able to go ahead with clear air.
I went to New York City to attend a Creator Summit and watch the 2015 Brandcast show. I spent some really great time with my Manager Maddie, Alfie and Joe. Also, I turned 30.
I had been dreading turning 30 for about 5 years and subsequently, it became a bit of a running joke that I would be 25 forever. Somehow, and I can't quite put my finger on why, a few days before the big three-oh, I accepted it. 30 wasn't something to fear and shy away from but something to celebrate and be joyful for. I'm going to say something bold now- my 30th birthday was the best day of my life. Everything amazing that could've happened, happened. I was surrounded by amazing people, given incredible gifts, had insane experiences and felt so alive and ready to run at the world. To age is a blessing. My Mum lost her fight against cancer when she was 37. I'm going to live all of my years with as much passion and joy as I can because some people, like my darling Mother, weren't given that chance.
Thank you sleepwiththekings.
In May I escaped. I booked last minute flights for me and Darcy and jetted off to Seattle to spend a week enveloped in the Bitsandclips family. That trip was life defining for a couple of reasons. One, it was the first time Marie and I had spent together just being supporters of each other. Our previous visits had been fun and frolics but this one was much more for love and comfort. Marie's dear Mother had recently passed away and so it was lovely to be able to offer the tiniest bit of comfort for her and in return, Marie reminded me how good it is to feel family love and welcomed me with such open arms. Two, I proved to myself that I can be a Mummy. That might sound crazy but for the first 3-4 years of Darcy's life, Matt and I had tag-teamed that parenthood gig. Going solo on an 8 hour flight and in a hotel is scary and I had a lot of doubts as to whether I'd cope. Fortunately (for Darcy haha), it turns out I'm ok at this motherhood thing and we both came out unscathed, even when the flight TV's failed and we had to play cards/crayons/quizzes for 8 solid hours-yay!
Summer was a whirlwind. My theatre tour, LouiseLIVE debuted in 5 different UK cities and hot damn, it went well. What started off as a Q&A session has now evolved into a structured, cohesive comedy/audience participation/self empowerment show and I couldn't be more pleased. Plans for LouiseLIVE 2016 have already begun and I'm crazy excited for how it will turn out. I think it might be my favourite project actually. If this whole YouTube thing pans, live shows are where my heart will be.
Thank you memories-and-roses.
After the shows it was straight onto promo for the book which had now transformed from text on my laptop to bright glossy pages of a hardback book. We had a launch party, TV, radio and magazine appearances, book clubs, videos, tweets and a tour. It was incredible. The book hit the top of Times Bestseller charts and I cried so many happy tears I couldn't even stop in the shower. It was the second greatest moment (after finding out I was having Darcy) of my life.
As soon as the book was hot off the press, the project I'd been working on since January was launched - my clothing line. I worked with Simply Be to create a 10 piece collection of clothing that flattered and celebrated the fuller figure. I'm so keen for women to embrace their body shape and feel confident in the clothes they wear that it was a total pleasure to design this line with curvy figures in mind. Every item has now become a staple piece in my wardrobe and seeing the women who have ordered items, take pictures and send me their thoughts really sparks a little place in my heart for them. All being well, this won't be the last you'll see of clothes I've designed!
Thank you Addisonand5sos.
After a quick trip to LA for Vidcon and collabs, the book, the tour, the clothes and a soft launch of my first dip into the stationery world with my 2016 diary (you'll be hearing MUCH more about this in October- we have a tour and all sorts planned), I spent the last 4 weeks of summer at home, with my Darcygirl, being a Mummy and enjoying life in suburbia. I needed it.
My friendship with my neighbour Vicky grew as we bonded over our Daughter's and as we added some more mamas to our group, I now have some local 'Mummy Friends' which is new to me. Before, all my friends with children lived far away, so to have some practically on my doorstep feels crazy comforting. I love that Darcy has so much interaction with children (as well as her school classmates) and I love that there are people I can socialise with who actually don't care about Sprinkle of Glitter. I know, that sounds ridiculous right? But it's not. When you live in a world of glamour and glitz, it's easy to be swept away into it and become a person you didn't mean to. It's easy to let yourself believe your own hype and drift away from your roots. I know this because sometimes I've felt it happen. It's like floating but very slowly. You begin to just float off a tiny bit and then before you know it, you're very far from where you came from. My goal is to never float off. I want to enjoy the glitz and glamour, it's freakin' amazing, but I want to never loose my love of supermarket shopping and the satisfying feeling of putting Darcy's fresh laundry away or the warmth of a chat on your neighbour's drive about the cost of school uniforms. Those are the things that nourish you I think.
And here we are, in September, and I'm celebrating my blog's 6 birthday in the exact same spot that I started it all those years ago. A better decorated spot but the same one none the less.
When I look back on the year I think of a lot of different things. I have enjoyed so many glitter adventures but I think my broken heart stole the show and so I won't ignore that. There is nothing wrong with accepting the sad moments in life and I will now move forward with confident strides and feel optimistic for our glittery future.
Last year I wrote -
"Happy Birthday little blog! What a journey we've been on. First year a wedding, second year a baby, third year a business, fourth year friends, fifth year a community. What do you think will come next?"
As is tradition, I'm going to add to it.
Happy Birthday little blog! What a journey we've been on. First year a wedding, second year a baby, third year a business, fourth year friends, fifth year a community and sixth year, sadly, a broken heart. What do you think will come next?
A million, billion thank you's to everyone who has made this year good, to every kind comment and supportive tweet, beautiful fan art, well edited fan video and every good natured Sprinklerino I've met in real life. You're a good lot. Thank you to everyone who submitted art for this post. Their names are credited below each piece.
Special thanks to Dom, Maddie and Natalie who make Sprinkle of Glitter what it is. Without them, I'd probably just be a mess haha.