It’s with bittersweet emotion that I announce a big change for The Graceful Host …
We’re MOVING to ….. Louisiana!
It’s hard to even type those words. How do I leave North Carolina? The city I call home. Where my husband and I have built a life. Where we created two beautiful boys. The place where I built a business. Where I’ve fostered sweet friendships. Where I’ve grown up. The home of countless memories and experiences. Just, how??
I’ve had some time to sit on this news. I joke that I never like to do anything fast. It’s just not my personality - I’m a very analytic person who likes to think things through. So I’ve had time to process my feelings before announcing it publicly. And that’s good for me - That means I can type this without being in a gigantic puddle of tears. There’s just a tiny puddle.
So, you might be asking … why are you moving?! Short answer: My husbands job is the reason for the move. He’s being transferred. It’s a gift that we’re able to move to the New Orleans area, really, because that’s where my entire family lives. I haven’t lived in Louisiana since I moved away for college 13 years ago. And truthfully, I never thought I’d be back. I came to North Carolina and attended Elon University, and just fell in love! At the time of my college graduation, my now husband and I were engaged, and even though I didn’t have a job (hello vocal performance major! haha!), I knew I wanted to be on my own. Since my husband, Todd, got a job in Charlotte right out of college, I decided to move to Charlotte so we could officially begin our lives together.
Not going to lie. When I first moved to Charlotte, I hated it. I mean, HATED it. But it was such a different place 9 years ago. And I felt very much alone, since Todd was traveling non-stop - I was basically living alone with no friends around and no job. Since I first moved to Charlotte as a young college grad, I’ve found my place and have created a business - and life! - that I just cannot imagine leaving behind. I opened my mind to what Charlotte had to offer, and she’s never stopped impressing me. I really thought we’d never leave this sweet Queen City. It truly feels like home to both of us.
It’s crazy to think about relocating, honestly. My anxiety is in overdrive, y’all! But as difficult as I’m sure this transition will be, I’m also looking forward to the change. It’s that feeling of living with paradoxical emotion, where I’m scared out of my mind about the unknown and yet, at the same time, eagerly excited for what’s to come. I will miss my friendships and vendor friends here in Charlotte deeply. I’ve had the chance to serve over 60 couples and dozens of families over the last 7 years! Not to mention work with so many talented vendors. And truly I cherish my team, who is just the best out there - Jenny, Brianna, Abby, Kasie, Chandler … I love y’all! I’m just so grateful for the opportunities I’ve experienced over the last several years being here in the Queen City.
But, there’s something to be said for starting fresh. For having the challenge of restarting in a new place, with so much experience under my belt. I do feel lucky to have a handful of vendor friends in the New Orleans area from past events. And of course, this does feel like a homecoming (for lack of a better term!) for me … because New Orleans was my first home. I truly can’t wait to reconnect with so many friends! Plus, we’ve never lived anywhere near family. So it’ll be a nice change to have family up the street, rather than a plane ride away. (Maybe Todd and I can squeeze a date night in more than just once a year! haha!)
So what’s going to happen to The Graceful Host, you might ask? I will absolutely be establishing both The Graceful Host weddings + events AND the Party Shop in New Orleans. And I cannot wait to serve brides + grooms and families in the Big Easy! If anything has come from this, it’s sparked a new fire in me. I’ve had some time to really map out future goals and make sure that I’m realigning my business with those goals. I have some big plans, y’all… I mean, HUGE! The news of the move may have rocked me in the beginning, but now … now, I’m taking this opportunity to dream bigger than ever! It’s been a difficult past few months having to turn away future business because we’re relocating, but I know in my heart that everything will work out and TGH will be better than ever in no time.
Make no mistake … this self proclaimed Carolina girl is terrified of starting over. Just terrified. But I love a challenge. And I cannot wait to have the chance to design and create in the city that gives me so much inspiration. The city taught me how to party - let’s be real. The city that molded me. And I’m very much looking forward to showing my family all that New Orleans has to offer, and to create a new home together.
So friends, my one wish is that you think of me and my family over the next few months as we make this huge life change and move hundreds of miles away from our beloved home of Charlotte.
And if you’re a bride in the New Orleans area …. I’m happily booking for 2020, and I cannot wait to get to know you better! Please give me a call!
And to Charlotte, the place I call home … Thank you for all the memories! I resisted you for so long. You were patient, though. And you welcomed me with open arms when I was ready to let you in. I’ll always think of you as my home. Leaving in the Fall will be difficult, and who knows - maybe we’ll be back?! And if we do have the chance to come back to the Queen City, I have no doubt you’ll welcome me back with open arms once again. Thank you, Charlotte … for everything!!!!
PS. I am still booking events through October 2019 in Charlotte! Our move will be in November, following my last wedding at the end of October. And I’d just love to help you with your event!!