A Woman I Know is a new venture for me. Back in April, I began to work on a plan to reformat my weekly link-up which I rolled out this month. I considered the themes that I had been both using and had wanted to use, brainstormed on a few more, and decided that I would go with four themes that would recur on a monthly basis (cuz I like patterns and symmetry and such). Then I realized that some months would have a fifth Saturday and was stuck as to how was I going to handle that situation. I looked back on the list of the other theme ideas that hadn’t made the cut and landed on an idea of featuring “a woman I know” which I had still considered doing but only on an occasional basis.
Many bloggers will publish posts on other bloggers which I appreciate for the introductions to other blogs and the exposure they afford to the bloggers showcased but I wanted this feature to be more personal and use a woman from my non-blogging life. More brainstorming ensued and I came up with a list of a dozen or so family, friends, and co-workers as potential candidates. My next step was to figure out which months in the next year or two will have a fifth Saturday and as luck would have it, this first month of the link-up reformat has a fifth Saturday. The next hurdle was to select the first honoree and ask her if she would do it.
My friend Amy was the perfect candidate for this inaugural post and happily, she agreed without hesitation. She was one of the first people I told about my blog when I first started it almost a year ago and she says that she reads all of my posts (I’ll tell you how I tested her on this in a bit). Amy is one of the most out-going and friendliest people you will ever meet, and not only am I lucky to have her as my friend, she is also my hair stylist, a co-conspirator in keeping the grays at bay. One day I will embrace the silver much like I did my curls several years ago but, for now, I’m not ready and Amy is my go-to gal for color.
I’ve known Amy for about 15 years and we met because my sister and brother-in-law knew her and her family from their temple. When The Husband and I joined the same temple a year later, Amy’s youngest son Devon was in the same Hebrew school class as our daughter Jo and our niece Melissa (and to this day, these three are still really close friends). As couples, we are also friends. Over the years, the families have celebrated good times together and supported each other in sad times as well. Besides being a successful and busy independent hair stylist, Amy is also a wife, mother of three, and grandmother to an adorable nearly one-year-old girl.
Amy has been such a good sport about this feature. There was the photo shoot a couple of weeks ago she found time for on a busy Saturday and then meeting with me another time for the official interview. I had sent her most of the questions in advance so that she could give some thought to what her answers would be but I saved a few for spontaneity’s sake.
A Woman I Know: A Conversation with Amy
Rena: Let’s start with something easy. What’s important to you? What makes you happy?
Amy: My family is the most important thing in my life. My husband, my children, my grandbaby, parents, sisters and other extended family are what make me happy. I love being with them and spending time together.
Rena: What did you want to be when you grew up?
Amy: I wanted to be a teacher or a daycare provider or a veterinarian. I love kids and animals so I thought that working with either was what I would do.
Rena: What led to you becoming a hair stylist?
Amy: I had struggled a bit in college and I had always had an interest in makeup and hair so I started thinking about working in “Hollywood” as a make-up artist. It was my mother who suggested I do the full program in cosmetology school and my first clients were mostly my mother’s friends. I’ve found that being a hair stylist is a good fit for me because I’m a very social person and I love the interaction I get with my clients. I get a lot of satisfaction from helping people feel good about themselves by making them look good. And I get to talk a lot.
Rena: What have you learned from your clients?
Amy: I think that I’m like a therapist for some of my clients, someone they can talk to and share what is troubling them. I’ve had to learn to be patient and tolerant.
Rena: I read an article recently about hair stylist’s top pet peeves. What is your top pet peeve?
Amy: I love when a client brings in a photo of a hair style they would like to try. However, sometimes I’ll have a client bring in a photo of a style that is not suited to her hair and I have to figure out how to tell her so. It’s not always an easy thing to do.
Rena: How would you describe your fashion style?
Amy: I think that I’m lucky that I don’t have to dress in any certain way like I might have to if I worked in an office. I would describe my style as casual, flowy, feminine, cute, and maybe a little bit sexy.
Rena: How has your style changed in the last 10, 20, or 30 years?
Amy: I like to stay current with basic trends so my wardrobe is always evolving. I really love the cold shoulder look as you can tell by the outfits I chose to wear in the photos. Just today I was on-line looking for more of them.
Rena: What is your biggest shopping challenge?
Amy: Well, you know I’m tall (5′ 10″) so often clothes aren’t in the right proportions for me. My height is an advantage with some styles but I look to avoid those that bring too much attention to my hips.
Rena: What do you think about the phrase “age appropriate” when it comes to fashion and style?
Amy: I think that there are some women who don’t use enough common sense when it comes to clothes. A little bit sexy is good but anything too short or too revealing is not good no matter how old you are.
Rena: Congratulations on your recent completion of a six-week fitness boot camp and losing over 20 pounds. You’ve belonged to gym and have been on WW, so why a boot camp challenge?
Amy: As I said before, I really like being social and at a traditional gym, I would be working out alone even though there were a lot of people around and I didn’t enjoy it. With the boot camp challenge (I still go to the workouts), I work out with a group of others who are for the most part, just like me in fitness level and with similar goals for better health. There is a lot of interaction, moving around, and so much fun that with the music, it’s almost like I’m dancing and not working out. I have so much more energy now and it is so much easier to get down on the floor to play with my granddaughter.
Rena: Speaking of your granddaughter, how did it feel to become a grandmother at 48?
Amy: I’m was thrilled. I had always hoped that I would become a grandmother before I turned 50 so that I could enjoy while I was still young.
Rena: Ok, now here’s your test question to see how thoroughly you’ve been reading my posts. What is finger mouthing?
Amy: Finger mouthing? Uh, never heard of it and I’m almost afraid to ask.
Rena: It’s an Instagram thing some of the younger celebs are doing. In their selfies, they pose with one of their hands near their mouth to show off a ring or mani. There was a link about it in my first Wednesday’s Whatevers post.
Amy: Oops, sorry.
Rena: No problem, I’m just so glad you agreed to be my first A Woman I Know. Is there anything else you would like to share?
Amy: I was honored that you asked me. If any of your readers are local and would like to book an appointment with me, they can contact me at email@example.com and if anyone would like to send me a picture of themselves and of a style they’d like to try, I will give my honest opinion as to whether it would be a good look on them.
Rena: Thank you for being such a good sport and willing guinea pig. And remember that time our boobs touched as we posed for the pictures by the shampoo bowl?
Shopping Suggestions For Amy’s Style
Let’s Wrap This Up
Now, onto the Fine-Whatever link up for this week. My featured contributor from last week’s In Real Life themed link-up is Jaymie at Shop Your Closet By Jaymie Ashcraft. Jaymie has a fun, laid-back, and “real life” style and she has been a supporter of my link-up since the first one back in January. Thank you, Jaymie.
I hope that you have enjoyed meeting my friend Amy. Who are the awesome women that you know? The next month with a fifth Saturday is October so be warned my other friends and family, I may soon be calling to ask you for a favor. Please consider saying yes.
Let’s connect! Subscribe, tweet, follow, friend, love, pin, stumble … all options are available and waiting for you. I look forward to hearing from you.