Oct 17, 2017

Bridging the Gap Campaign: Lana

Over the course of the past four years, blogging has brought so many fun opportunities to my doorstep. From amazing blogging friendships to fun sponsorships, I never expected this little hobby to bring so much to my life. And today, today marks another amazing collaboration here at Whitney à la mode! I'm taking part in an unprecedented blogging campaign featuring 200 phenomenal bloggers: The Bridging the Gap Campaign!

Today is an exciting day with the launch of an unprecedented campaign, “Bridging the Gap,” where 100 Millennial and 100 Midlife Influencers are coming together to blur the boundaries as we believe we are stronger together. We are putting an end to the labels and divisions that no longer serve us as age is simply a number, while it’s your attitude and way of looking at life that truly matters. We are women supporting women, along with a few brave men joining in the celebration. We are coming together to send a powerful message that we choose to be seen for who we are rather than be defined by our ages. We believe in a world without separation. We believe that we are far stronger together. Please join us in this revolutionary campaign as it’s the hearts and souls of the women that truly matter in the end.

My wonderful friend, Lana, from My New Happy so graciously invited me to be a part of this campaign. She chose me as her millennial as we've paired-up for this event. I "met" Lana online when I joined The Blended Blog and then met her in real life when a bunch of TBB'ers joined-up in Toronto in May! What I love about Lana is her calming, positive presence. Spending time with her makes you feel good about life!

Our task for the Bridging the Gap Campaign is to introduce each other on our blogs and we chose to do so in an interview format. So here you go, Lana in her own words:

Short bio: I was born in 1967 in California, but spent most of my growing up years in North Carolina and now Washington. I met my husband of 27 years in 9th grade and we married 8 years later, after I finally talked him into it. I always loved fashion, and have a degree in fashion merchandising/business. I spent many years in the retail industry, first as a sales manager and then a buyer. When my first son was born I was able to stay home and did so for 22 years. In 2003 my husband and I started a business, selling and installing door, bath, and cabinet hardware. It’s fun to work together, but challenging. In my free time I like to write, read, travel, and spend time outdoors hiking and skiing.

What is your blog about? Hmm…good question! It started out as a place to write about teenagers, parenting, and preparing for the empty stage of life. I wrote about that for about a year, and then realized that my boys weren’t going to be in this stage for long. That’s when I changed my name and my focus. Ideally, I’d like to write about life after the kids have flown – about how it’s not over. Even though it’s sad in many ways, this stage of life really is a new beginning. So, Midlife Lifestyle, I guess. But FUN midlife, with travel and fashion and good times!

Why did you start blogging? I’ve always loved to write, going back all the way to elementary school. Someday I hope to write a book. In my everyday life, I work with my husband in our hardware business, doing accounting. SOOOOO not exciting, but important and worthwhile, and it pays the bills. I really prefer to do something creative, and wanted to get back to writing. Blogging seemed like good first step.

What is the title of your blog and why? I switched to My New Happy because that’s where I am right now. I spent 22 years giving my all to being a mom, and it made me so happy. I was worried that after Thomas left for college I would be lost. But it’s a whole new stage, and it’s time to work on myself and the new things that make me happy in my day to day life.

What is the most rewarding part of blogging? The connections. I’ve become friends with so many people that I would have never known existed if it hadn’t been for blogging. Meeting Deena and Carrie, and working on the idea for The Blended Blog brought new life to my own blogging. I love that we have this eclectic group of ladies, from all ages and stages of life, working together and becoming friends in the process. TBB is the true definition of Bridging The Gap. Where else can you find a group of ladies from three different decades, hanging out together, shopping, sightseeing - like we did in Toronto? It’s kind of magical.

What makes you the happiest about being your current age? Having time for myself. Which sounds strange, because honestly, at my age, time is kind of running low. But I feel really happy in my marriage, I’ve raised two great boys. For the first time in 30 years I have extra time for me, and I feel like the possibilities are endless. Now I just need to figure out what to do with all that time

What have you learned from the millennials in TBB? First of all, how to figure out social media! Seriously, I’m so technologically challenged, and you guys know instinctively what to do. I love your energy and exuberance for life – sometimes we forget that as we get older. I’ve learned to look at things differently, to take chances and try something new.

Do you have a millennial blogger that has inspired you? I can’t pick just one, but I love all the millennial fashion bloggers. Your ability to style an outfit and take such beautiful pictures is impressive, and continues to elude me. You guys do it like pros!

How can we “bridge the gap” in our non-blogging life? Keeping our eyes open for opportunities to include each other as equals. I’m fortunate to spend a lot of time around my boys’ friends, and they help keep me young in mind and heart. Being receptive to new opportunities and situations, even if we feel uncomfortable. Not judging others for their age, but welcoming their perspective on life.

Now that you know a little more about Lana, here are a few of my favorite posts from her blog:

Be Brave and Skydive
Paris is Always A Good Idea: Day One
Their Mama: Mother's Day Wishes

And thank you, lovely friend, for inviting me to be your millennial in the Bridging the Gap Campaign!
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