It doesn’t really feel like my birthday until I’m riding up a mountain in an open air sleigh to Beano’s Cabin.
The past three years, we’ve spent my birthday in Beaver Creek, Colorado. For my birthday meal, we take a sleigh to this magical lodge called Beano’s cabin. After a chilly ride up the mountain, we leave our shoes at the door and slide into cozy slippers provided by the lodge.
Tired, overstimulated, worn-down, anti-social. This is how I feel when I don’t have alone time.
A few months ago, I spoke at Florabundance Design Days. I LOVE getting to speak to fellow floral designers and business owners. At Florabundance, I got to see industry friends, meet Bloomers, and even participate in demonstrations from some of my favorite designers. What’s better than that?
I normally quit working at 3pm and go pick up my kids from school and don't look at work again until the following day. Today, I had back to back appointments all day and left work at 3pm, picked up my kids, but had to bring work home with me. It is incredibly rare that I work at home with my kids around, but this is one of those rare weeks where there are major deadlines and extra hours are necessary.
Had I known, I'm not sure I would have agreed to do it.
See the little girl in this photo. She turned four a few weeks ago. We have never cut her hair. It has grown at it's own sweet, slow pace and I've honestly wished it would stay short forever. As silly as it may sound, there is something about her hair being short that makes me feel like she's still a baby.
As many of you know, I’ve prioritized exercise this past year. Working out isn’t my favorite thing, but I want to be healthy for myself and my kids and so I can live the life I want to live. I have three kids five and under. If I’m going to be the mom I want to be, I have to keep my energy up!
Now, I really thrive when I stick to pretty strict routines. I can feel a difference if I miss even a few days of working out. When I went to Disney for eight days with Stella, I didn’t plan ahead for exercising, and even though we walked around nine miles a day, I could feel the difference. So, in January when I went to LA for the Florabundance Design Days conference, I knew I had to have work-out plan so that I could stick to my schedule and not miss any gym time!
Before I had Stella, when it was just Brian and me, I would wake up at 5 am every day. I’m one of those rare introverted extroverts: when I’m on, I’m totally on, but I need time to myself to re-energize and recharge. I loved having time all to myself, before Brian was up, to prepare for my day.
Then I had Stella. After being up all night with a baby, the last thing I wanted to do was wake up at 5 am. Shortly after, I had the boys. Same thing. Somehow, five years have passed since I regularly woke up at 5 am. And I miss it.
Let’s say the average person wakes up at 7am everyday.
I remember around this time last year, having dinner with a friend and somehow the topic of sensitivity came up and I said, "I'm sensitive."
Her response was, "That's really good that you recognize that and are able to admit that. Now you can work on it."
Her words were meant to be encouraging and I know they came from a place of love. The truth is I'm grateful that I feel things so deeply. I believe that feeling deeply allows for great inward focus, which has helped tremendously in growing my business. I also think it allows me to be more aware of what others are experiencing, which comes in super handy when planning a wedding. The truth is I don't view it as something I need to work on, but rather a strength.
He gives the best hugs. He even pats you on the back as he hugs you tight. It's the sweetest thing. Home is his favorite place to be. Everyday when he comes home from school, he says, "Mommy, I want to put on my pajamas."
Tonight Zeke (and his brother, Perry) are performing in the Christmas program at school and I can't wait. Perry will love everyone looking at him and he will be singing as loud as he can possibly sing.
A couple of days ago I wrote a post about my marriage and wedding anniversary. I received around 40 direct messages saying something along the lines of, "I can't believe you would lose followers over this."
Here's the thing: I'm perfectly ok with losing followers.
Today is our 13th wedding anniversary. We dated five years before we married. We've officially been with one another half our lives. Warning: This is not going to be one of those sweet and sappy anniversary posts.
To be honest, this past year has been the hardest year of marriage we've had. In almost every way, our roles switched. Something neither of us asked for or were prepared for. We struggled to navigate our new normal.
I’ve only been doing kid birthday parties for four years, but it only took me two years to figure this thing out. Here’s what I do to make sure I actually get to be present during the parties – you know, like actually talk to the people there, watch my kids as they blow out their candles with my actual eyes and not through the viewfinder on my phone – and have zero clean up when the party's over.
I am a travel junkie at heart. I am one of those people who would totally take my kids out of school for a year and travel the world. Maybe one day I will! A lot of our traveling the past couple of years, especially with three little ones, has felt more like trips than vacations. Seaside, Florida is that one place where we go every year that actually feels like a vacation. We rent a beach house for a week and we have zero problem unplugging. We go about the day with no real schedule. We go for bike rides, swim in the pool, and play by the beach. Everything is in walking distance. We eat good food and each day the kids pick a treat, either a snow cone, ice cream, or something from the local candy shop.
Before I share with you this story, I want to thank my husband, Brian, for giving me his blessing to share it with you. He is the best human being I've ever met and allowing me to share part of his story in hopes that it might help someone else just adds to the very long list of why I love him. My husband Brian worked as a financial advisor for years. It was a stressful job to say the least. After our twin boys were born, Brian began to get very sick. We were in and out of the hospital with him four different times ...
Brian and I were married eight years before we had kids. During those years I would go through Ina Garten’s cookbooks, page by page, and cook a new recipe each night for dinner. I love to cook. There is something about taking ingredients and making them into a delicious meal that just makes me happy. Brian and I always ate our dinner at the table together. This is where we would really talk about our day or dream about our next vacation. Fast forward to today and life's a little more full! Driving three ...
This past weekend, we went bowling with some friends. One of them said to me, “you know my daughter’s four and we only have 14 summers left with her and it really hit me the other day that we need to make time to create some memories. We need to plan a little vacation. I mean, 14, that’s not many.” I couldn’t agree more! Brian says out loud almost every week “the days are long, but the years are short” mainly to remind us that even though we are exhausted and ready to put the kids to bed and ...
I remember so much about my first year with Stella. I remember the way she looked at me when I fed her, making faces at her while I changed her diaper, laying on the floor beside her cheering her on as she learned to crawl, sitting with her for hours as she played with her favorite toy, and I’ll never forget her first effort in trying to talk when she said, “agoo”. I loved oohing and ahhing over her. I loved to just sit and study her facial expressions. I will forever treasure that time. She was 15 months old when I ...
After several newsletters about important topics like maximizing your workday, getting a grip on email stress, and making more time for your family, I thought it was time to write about something a little more fun, TRAVEL! A little background about me and travel - it is my favorite thing in the world! It’s why I work. I’m constantly planning the next adventure and no day is more exciting than when my new issue of Travel and Leisure arrives in my mailbox. For me, travel has been far greater an education than ...
Last year, I was in a meeting with a client; she and her mother had a wonderful relationship with one another. They listened to each other. They respected one another. I could tell they had great admiration for each other as well. I’ve seen lots of different mother daughter dynamics through my years of working in the wedding industry, but this one was different. While the daughter completely respected her mom they also genuinely enjoyed being around each other. They were friends too. In one of our last ...
I’m Jessica Zimmerman. I’m the owner of ZIMMERMAN, a floral + event design studio. Brian is my husband and together we have a daughter, Stella, and twin boys, Perry and Zeke - a full home and even fuller hearts! Three years ago, I was drowning. I owned a rental company and I was working 12 - 14 hour days barely scraping together enough money to pay my bills. My daughter was six months old and I desperately missed her. Every single day I would wonder.. How did I get here? How is it that I’m ...
With less than two weeks before Hillary Butler arrives in our studio to teach her abstract painting workshop, we over here at ZIMMERMAN have been in a very artsy mood! ZIMMERMAN owner + lead designer, Jessica, is a lover of art. So much so, that when building her home, she painted every single wall white so the artwork she and her husband have collected would pop off the walls like their very own little gallery.