What a joy it is to wish my sweet girl, Kylie, a Happy 23rd Birthday!
Although Kylie is not my biological daughter (I’m her “bonus” mom), she is my daughter in every other sense of the word.
We came into each other’s lives over 22 years ago. I changed her diapers. Rocked her to sleep. Comforted her when she was sad, and celebrated her victories too.
I’ve never NOT thought of her in any other way than as my daughter. She taught me how to be a Mom. And she is lucky to have so many people in her blended family that love her.
As Kylie has grown into a young woman, our relationship has grown too. We still have the boundary of a parent and child. But our connection has also extended to friendship too. We just like to hang out together.
I love that she’ll indulge me by listening to my favorite 80’s New Wave music, rewatching the movie 13 Going On 30 for the gazillionth time, and discussing the latest “DATELINE” podcast. (OBSESSED!)
In return, I love hearing how she sees the world. Kylie has a special twinkle — a little naive, a little quirky, and A LOT of caring and sweetness towards those around her.
I’m not gonna lie… when she told me she wanted to attend my alma mater, the University of Missouri, to attend (like me), journalism school, I was so psyched! And then, she pledged my sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta. Not just mom and daughter… sisters now too!
I don’t think upon her graduation from Mizzou (Mom brag moment, she graduated Magna Cum Laude from one of the top journalism schools in the country), I ever imagined she’s come and be a part of the team at Just Jill.
But with her degree in strategic communications, her skill set was just what we needed. And I love to work with her every day. From being my right hand on video shoots and Facebook Lives to copywriting our product descriptions and managing product reviews, Kylie is a huge asset to the Just Jill team.
I have my “boss” hat on now. Kylie is a hard worker who contributes to the team every day. What a lucky find for our company!
And what a proud moment for her Dad and me.
Since she’s around all of the products at Just Jill, take a look at some of her favorite finds. I always love it when I hear her say, “I think I’m going to get this!”
“My parents have bought me many purses over the years in hopes that I’d finally start carrying one… it didn’t work. I carry my water bottle with me everywhere that I go, so much so that my family teases me about it. So, when WanderFull was first introduced to the Shop, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on one.
I currently have the gold one, but I have my eye on a couple of the new colors we just got in. There are so many colors to choose from, so it’s just a matter of finding one that fits you.”
“These earrings haven’t received as much attention as they deserve! The combination of the chain and the pearls creates a fresh and modern yet still timeless look.
I have always been a fan of dangly earrings. While small hoops and studs are cute, I have a rounder face, so I love the way that it frames my face. I also have a lot of hair, so when I wear earrings, I want them to stand out!”
“I wear this bangle every single day. My mom gave it to me to try on, and it somehow never made its way back (oops). I love to layer my jewelry, so having a simple yet visually interesting piece is key. Whether I am going out, having dinner, or heading to work, it goes with everything I wear.
I have larger-sized hands, so finding a jewelry piece that I don’t have to slide over my hands is a big plus.”
“I’ve always been drawn to earth tones and nature-inspired pieces, whether it’s clothing or jewelry. Regardless of whether you put any weight into the meanings behind stones, I do love what tourmaline represents.
Tourmaline is meant to help you understand yourself and others. It attracts tolerance, compassion, prosperity, and inspiration. And that’s why I love this necklace!”
“I can’t stress enough how obsessed I am with this Blueberry Coffee Cake. This moist cake is infused with pure New England maple syrup and tart blueberries to make the best treat. Although My Grandma’s coffee cakes may be considered a breakfast food, they can easily double as a delicious dessert!
If I had to recommend one product from the Shop to my friends and family, it would undoubtedly be My Grandma’s.”
“I have always thought that hoops were adorable. With how thick my hair is, they always blended in so much that no one could tell that I was wearing them.
Not to mention that they aren’t traditionally shaped, which I love. The oblong shape of this hoop adds a sprinkle of chic and polish to your look.”
“These soaps speak for themselves, but I’m here in case you need convincing. I have met Katie a couple of times, and she’s such a sweet person!
Every time I see her soaps, I am amazed at how talented she is! Fun, creative soaps are such an easy way to elevate your bathroom. Not only will you smile when you see it, but your guests will as well. They are even cuter in person!”
“From the time I was little, I have been going to Calista to get my hair cut. I have tried a lot of their products over the years, but the Cleanse & Condition Duo has to be my favorite.
My hair is picky when it comes to shampoo and conditioner, but it LOVES Calista Jousse. Seriously, it’s the only shampoo and conditioner that I use. I can feel how much healthier my hair feels, and the bottles last for months”
“If I had to pick my absolute favorite collection of jewelry at Just Jill Shop, it would be the Roman Glass. Honestly, the pictures don’t do it justice. In-person, the iridescence of these pieces is absolutely radiant, especially when it catches the light.
Each piece is one-of-a-kind, having been excavated in Israel and dating back hundreds of years to the Romans. So when you wear Roman Glass, you wear a piece of history!”
“When people think of caramels, they think of how sticky it is. Not Hope’s! Just a warning, these little handcrafted caramels are pretty addicting.
Ever since we got these little caramels into the shop, it’s been hard for my mom and me to keep our hands off of them! While my favorite is the spicy caramel (just trust me), the chai flavor is a very, very close second.”