All That Glitters


This is happening, this is working, this is a dream come true!

I’m on a jet plane headed back from Vegas (NFR) and I feel so energized. Wow! This has been an amazing trip, both personally and professionally! Hard work and believing in yourself does pay off. This is the first time in a long time that I feel like everything is coming together.


You know how you run around, trying to make all the ends come together? Whether it’s your business or your life in general! You’re networking, talking, working, praying and double-double checking everything, and you feel like you’re not getting anywhere, BUT you keep going and going? For years, that’s what I’ve felt like. This week I can say OMG things are coming together. Those amazing ideas, the ones that you wished would snap perfectly into place? Well, they’re snapping!

Amy and I flew into Vegas for NFR a day early to attend one of the sweetest weddings we’ve ever attended. That’s where the fun started!


I do have to say, playing blackjack with George Strait was the highlight of the whole trip! The high five and the kiss on the cheek just about did this Soule Sister in! Talk about a dream come true!


I loved seeing all my long-time friends from Cali, and my hubby brought so many smiles to my face. This last week really made me remember why I’m doing this: because it’s FUN. It reminded me, why work so hard on a dream if you’re not having fun?


Even if something glitters, if it doesn’t bring you happiness, why should you hold onto it? Life is too short! Life is once! I have to remind myself every day to take a deep breath and enjoy this ride God has given me! Even in my darkest times, I’ve always known he would bring me through it, and this week was a huge payoff for me emotionally. Almost 13 years later, I’m still so in love with the person to whom I said “I do.” We have two amazing strong-willed girls. I get to spend time with family and people who love me, with a company Amy and I have fought for every day for the past 10 years…I have to say thank you Lord!


I know tomorrow brings new struggles and challenges, but this last week was badass! Yesss! I hung out with George and Norma Strait!

Find your Soule and go for it!

Love, Lolo

The Way You Are


The moment you realize your daughter is hanging on every word you speak is so powerful. She’s 10 and she’s listening to everything Joel and I say, everything my friends and I say—but the moment I have the power to really make her feel great or bad…it can be overwhelming.

Last night we were waiting in the truck, just the two of us, and she was sitting next to me up on the console of the truck, in the middle of the front seat. We were face-to-face, and I just looked at her and said, “Charley, you are so beautiful. I am so lucky to be your Mommy!”


The softness that came over her eyes, the delight in her huge smile that followed me saying that brings me to tears as I write this blog. I know I’m the most powerful, influential person in my daughter’s life, but in that moment, I really got what that meant!

It’s my job every day to tell her and Jaylee how amazing they are. My last words to them every night are, “Who always loves you no matter what? MOMMY…”


I love the song from Bruno Mars, “You Are Amazing Just The Way You Are.” That song is about loving who you are, accepting yourself even though you’re imperfect—and doing the same for others. We all have things we don’t like about ourselves: our nose, our butt, our curly hair, our straight hair or how fat we are. Blah, blah, blah!

Soule Sisters, take that power back! Look at the things you do love and move on from the things you don’t. Life is too short to focus what’s not great! I know it’s a cliché—the thing about clichés is that they’re usually true—so here’s the cliché: NOBODY IS PERFECT. God gave each of us so many gifts, and to waste those gifts on wishing away our perceived imperfections is a colossal waste of life and goodness and happiness.

This week I’m putting all my outfits together for Vegas and, yes, NOTHING is fitting. I am 10 pounds heaver than ever! So WHAT?! A few new pairs of jeans, more crystal, fantastic makeup and some jewels, and this Gyspy Sister is going to rock 40 with a few extra pounds.


I can choose to be mad and make it all about me and my weight, or I can show off my qualities and have a blast with my friends and hubby in Vegas! Wherever you are in life or whatever size you are, you’re amazing just the way you are. And if I don’t live my life by those words, what I am teaching my daughters?

XOXO-Love Lo

Ho Hum Christmas

coverSo, every year, once Halloween has been tucked away in the history books, and November rolls in, there’s the huge debate: Decorate early for Christmas, or not? Do you roll through November with pumpkins and fall décor in your home, sipping pumpkin pie lattes, or do you get your elf hat and break out the candy canes at midnight Oct. 31? Normally, I try to stay pretty neutral on what I write about, but on this, I just can’t maintain neutrality! I really dislike the “hates” of Christmas—bah-humbug to the haters of early-Christmas revelers! I just read something on Pinterest the other day that said: For every Christmas tree that is lit before Thanksgiving, an elf kills a baby reindeer. WHATEVER! That makes me want to poke someone with a sharp candy cane! I am “that person!” As soon as Halloween is over, Christmas is on! My decorations go up. It’s the only holiday where I really “deck the halls!” I am so thankful for Thanksgiving, but I love the Christmas spirit, especially since I have kids. I feel, as a mom, it’s my job to bring that magic to life. The real world will set in for my girls soon enough, it’s my job to make the most out of this time.


It’s about magic, anticipation and joy for my sweet girls! My Mom always made it such an event for all of us girls. She made it so extraordinary, and I want my girls to feel the same way. It’s the best time of year, all about love, family and festiveness! I know not everyone feels that way, but I just can’t stand the negative posts about Christmas. For goodness sake, it’s Jesus’s birthday! What’s wrong with making that a marathon celebration? If you don’t want to decorate, GIVE and GIVE more. There are so many who go without all year, this is a time to GIVE! It’s a season for kids; it’s a time of enchantment, an opportunity to give yourself over to the childlike wonder of the season. I think I act as much like a kid as my girls, and it’s wonderful for me and for them!


So, this holiday season, put kindness in your heart. Forgive the ones who’ve done you wrong. I am not telling you to embrace those who’ve forsaken you, just forgive and let the anger and resentment blow away in the frosty winter air. Take stock of the amazing gifts you have, both material and immaterial. We live in one of the most prosperous societies in history. It’s a truly amazing time, don’t waste it on bitterness. Grab some marshmallows and hot cocoa, pop some popcorn, grab your copy of “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer,” and enjoy this delightful time! It’s a gift waiting to be opened.

Will It Matter?


So, I posted a blog the other day about my Grandma Graham, and how, although she’s still alive, we’ve effectively lost her to Alzheimer’s. I wrote about how crushing that’s been for me and my family.

It’s made me think a lot about my family and close friends and how I don’t want to take those special relationships for granted. I was talking to a friend of mine the other day who said her Mamacita (her grandma who has since passed away), gave her a sage piece of advice a long time ago. She told my friend that when something upsetting happens, ask yourself, “Will this matter in 10 years?”


My response was, “Hey, I always say that! I’ll ask myself, in six months, will this make a difference?” Sometimes the answer is, “Hell, yes!” But, more often, the answer is, “Nope.”

When you view problems through that prism, it brings into focus what’s important, what really matters and what is worth fighting for. Somebody dinged your car door in the parking lot, yeah, that’s frustrating, but, really, long-term, is it going to affect the quality of your life or your loved-ones? Absolutely not! So, why waste time on those emotions?

There are things I get plenty frustrated with, especially if they involve my girls! I want the best for them and I will always fight for them. That kind of stuff, I’ll go to the ends of the earth to make right, because, yeah, in six months or 10 years, that WILL matter to me, and it will matter to them!


So, a gentle suggestion to use the “Lorinda” or “Mamacita” yardstick in your life—when you’re faced with a maddening situation, ask yourself, “In X amount of time, will it matter?”

You’ll save yourself an inordinate amount of grief and, chances are, you’ll learn to separate the mountains from the molehills.

–Lorinda Van Newkirk

Time Won’t Stop

1From the time I get up—which is early, because I don’t require much sleep—until the time my head hits the pillow at night, my life is a frantic, non-stop race. That’s just how I’m wired! I have a ton of energy and I USE it! I give thanks to God for that, because I love to go, go, go.

The other day, I took a moment for reflection. It got me wondering, how often do you notice, with the everyday hustle and trying to keep up with whoever down the street, that hours pass, days pass, months pass and BAM!—you realize you haven’t been smelling the roses along the way?

My grandmother (my Dad’s mom) has Alzheimer’s—her body is still here, but her mind is gone. I think about her every day. I wish so badly that I could call her, go see her and talk to her.  It crushes me to know that one of the most important women in my life no longer knows who I am, or even who she is. I’m so mad at myself for not taking more time, when we first learned she was sick, to visit her, to let my kids know her more…now it’s too late, and my heart is broken.


This last summer, Jaylee took up sewing. So, of course, we now have a sewing machine and all the fun stuff to go with it. Grandma Graham taught me how to sew, and again, I found myself fervently wishing she could’ve taught Jaylee, too. She taught me so much in life. Two of the greatest things she taught me were to never give up and to just keep working. She would be so proud of me today—I took her words to heart, and I marvel at how far they’ve taken me.

As I write this blog about her, tears fill my eyes because I’ve been remembering all the wonderful memories she gave me.  I have asked myself, “What I was so busy with back then? Does all of that really matter now?” If I had taken a little more time with her, would the pain be so bad now? Would it have made it harder?


I have one grandmother left, Nana, my Mom’s mom. She is pretty amazing, too. So kind and loving. She lives in Alaska and visits my parents in California a few months out of each year. My girls love her and miss her every day. I love when they bring her up in stories and ask when are they going to see her! I am so lucky to have had so many amazingly strong great-grandmothers and grandmothers in my life.


With the sadness of not being able to talk to Grandma Graham, I have made it a point to call and check in with Nana often. I truly love visiting with her and she makes me laugh and smile just to hear her voice! I’m planning a trip to Alaska this summer to take the girls. They’ve never been. I don’t want to look back again and feel I made the same mistake twice. While time is free, it’s also priceless—spend it wisely.