Saturday, May 12, 2012

1600 Hours Later...

Well...1603 to be exact.

I finally did it.

It may not seem such a huge deal to graduate from hair school, but for me, it's a miracle. Not because I'm a "slacker" or "a little slow" (quite the contrary, I tend to be a bit of an overachiever)...but because for a good few years, completing post-secondary education just wasn't in the cards for me.

In my second semester at college, my father had passed away. From that point, I felt like my life had snowballed and landed in a hole of impossibility, no matter how much I tried to make the impossible possible. Have you ever gone through a point in your life, where you felt like you were trying your absolute hardest with blood, sweat, and tears but no matter what, you still failed? That was me. Before I left college, I had ended up as a part time student working three jobs. I would work until 4am, then be to class later that morning by 8am. It was a vicious cycle I simply could not keep up with while trying to overcome the grieving of losing my father.

So I packed up and went home. I kept trying to get back into school....local art schools, even community college just to finish my associate's degree. Nothing would work out. The financial aid wasn't there, they lost my files and class had already started, etc. For one reason or another, it just wasn't working out. I couldn't even get a decent job to try and get back on my feet.

Then one day, I finally gave into the idea of going to cosmetology school. I've always wanted to go (after all those years of doing everyone's hair and makeup for Show Choir and Musical Theater), and people kept urging me to. I started looking around, and I ALMOST ended up at the Aveda in Lansing, MI...but I couldn't afford the housing at the time.

Around this time, my aunt who had just moved down to Florida a few months previous, had come up for my cousin's graduation. We started talking at the open house and at one point my aunt just turns to me and says, "hey....why don't you come back with me in a few days?" Well, that took me about 5 seconds to decide my life was going nowhere and I had nothing to lose, so within 3 days I packed up and headed down to Florida.

Thus, I got a job, started attending school, and I even caught myself a husband!

There were a lot of scares while I was in school, that my financial aid was going to fall through....then there were a lot of things my husband and I went through in the last year. But I held on and tried my best to give 110% regardless of what was going on in my life at the time. I had one goal, that was to graduate and graduate well.

And I did. So here I am, diploma in hand, I've been studying for the state boards for two months, and we're getting ready to head back to the "Show-Me" state. And not to mention my husband has completed one of his goals and is moving onto his next as well. I'm really proud of him, too.

Anyway! This has been a huge deal for me. I'm so glad I have this opportunity to do something I love, and that my life has taken a total 180. And thanks to all my friends and family (and models) who have supported me all the way!

Without further ado, my graduation from the Aveda Institute of St. Petersburg!

First of all, I would like to take this moment to thank Betsey Johnson for providing me with the perfect graduation dress...in petite size:

Out of 4 awards given, I won two...Highest GPA and Highest Retail Average (we couldn't seem to get a picture where someone wasn't laughing):

With my mother and step-dad:

The hubby helping me clean out my station for the final time! (Gosh, we look so young...I swear we're in our 20s!)

Packing up my portfolio I scrapbooked for my clients to look through:

One last snapshot of school:

And my coconut!

Wait...what? Okay, so here's the story:

When I was younger we came to Florida twice and also went to Hawaii for vacation. Every time I was DYING to bring back a coconut. Because that's just what you do in exotic places, you get coconuts! However, I was always told I couldn't because they don't allow you to take coconuts on airplanes. SO. Thanks to my mom for being innovative and remembering all those years ago, I finally got my Florida coconut!

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Journeying through the last 6 years of my life, I'm reminded of how God is in control, no matter what the situation. He has carried me through some of the hardest times of my life, and now through one of the most promising times of my life. There will always be a bigger picture, and I cannot fail if I always choose to trust God, and obey. One verse that I have specifically encountered on multiple occasions is Deuteronomy 31:6

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.

Isn't that promising? If I hadn't failed so many times, I never would have gotten to the point I'm at now. I would still be struggling and trying to figure out where I was going next. Perhaps I never would have met my future husband.

You know that old hymn, Great is Thy Faithfulness? That one is my favorite. :)

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Vidal Sassoon 1928-2012


So it's been a while, eh? Between my photo shoot, my graduation, my husband's graduation, moving in less than two weeks, registering and studying for State Boards, plus everything that has come in-between all that, we've been real busy! I'll share photos of all those events separately to avoid making an overly-lengthy post, but what I would like to touch on here today is a legend in the hair industry.

Vidal Sassoon was a hairstyling icon who worked on creating efficient, low-maintenance hairstyles through geometric cutting and shapes. He's most known for reinventing the classic "bob" and inspiring hairdressers all over the world to push limits and "change" the industry.

In celebration of Vidal Sassoon's life, BehindTheChair.com is making their entire edition of their Vidal Sassoon issue available for free. Especially to all my hairdresser friends, this is a great opportunity to get a taste of what this innovative hairstyling pioneer has accomplished.
Check it out (Click the image):

The segment on Vidal Sassoon beings on Page 109.

"He changed the way everyone looked at hair. Before Sassoon, it was all back-combing and lacquer; the whole thing was to make it high and artificial. Suddenly you could put your fingers through your hair! He didn't create [Sassoon's five-point cut] for me; he created it on me. It was an extraordinary cut; no one has bettered it since. And it liberated everyone. You could just sort of drip-dry it and shake it." - Sassoon's former model and creative director of American Vogue, Grace Coddington.