Well, well, well…. we meet again.

This time however i’m 32 (it’s my birthday today) and unemployed. Bet you never thought you’d read that! I have spent the last 14 years of my life dedicated to working and being successful in a world I have retired from. Well retirement is what I’m calling it.

So where do I begin? Well, 2020 first of all; I had BIG plans for myself and the pandemic made them go all sorts of haywire just like everyone else in the ENTIRE world. I had just got my business license and sellers permit to start the online boutique I had been dreaming about for so long Don and Sunset. The pandemic hit and that plan came to a screeching halt. So, I adjusted with everyone else. I had time to think of what I really wanted my life to look like. Let me be honest here, I am very aware that not everyone was afforded this luxury during this global pandemic. I was so lucky that I had the security of knowing I had a job the entire pandemic and being unemployed was a choice I made for myself and my future. But nonetheless I decided that being 31, not married, and no kids meant it was time to make some key life decisions while I still could.

So let me set the scene…. blogging, traveling, cooking, sharing the things that I love with people, and SHOPPING have always been things that I have loved. They keep me going. In March, right when the pandemic hit and I thought I was going to be off for a bit I decided I wanted to get my blog up and running again so I bought the website template Alex from High Moon Studio was offering. By the way, she is AMAZING! Unfortunately, that plan was thrown off when I had to go back to work within the week. So I went back to work and put my blogging dreams to the side like always.

In June I moved back into my moms house to save money to buy a house and not wanting to sign a new lease in the middle of a pandemic. Originally I was thinking like 6 months. Lets all collectively laugh together! One morning scrolling instagram I see Alex (she shows up a lot in this story clearly) post that she is going to have a designer training so that you can learn to create your own business designing branding and websites for people. And immediately I knew I wanted to sign up for it and in the same moment I just KNEW that I needed to tell my best friend Amanda about. I had been telling her to learn coding and be a website developer since we were about 18 and I was first introduced to the blogging world. So Better Together Design Co. was born. I was going to focus on branding and social and she was going to be the developer master that she is. The classes started, we learned a lot, but it was still hard working as many hours as we were working, her having a daughter, and I was commuting about 2 hours one way.

So December rolls around and the anxiety and panic attacks from driving to San Francisco every day were starting to wear on me. I didn’t even have my car because I was driving home and some huge piece of sheet rock came flying at me in the dark and fucked my car up. I was afraid of coming home from work and seeing people every day when my mom has an auto immune disease. It was all just A LOT. I had money saved, designer training under my belt, drive, ambition, and well just knowing that I was gonna make shit work no matter what. So I decided to quit one day.

AND THEN IT HAPPENED….. the insurrection on January 6th. Now, I know that you may be asking yourself why the fuck this matters but hang on for a moment because it does. When I was in elementary school I wanted to go into politics. I mean like I wanted to be the Governor of California and then the President go into politics. I have always cared about people and society and well also, I wanted to be wealthy. Law school, work, run for office, etc. you know the drill. I started to cross stuff off the list until I was about 23 and decided I was done with school and was just going to work because I was already making good money hiring people with degrees from UCLA.

So, January 6th is when the two things I love the most collided and I found my calling. I was PISSED all day long that bloggers and people who had business I loved to shop at were just silent. Defending their silence saying that their platform is a place for beauty, clothes, etc. Now, I understand that people have the right to choose what they share and don’t share on their platforms however, since YOU are your business and I am the consumer I have the right to know whether I am spending my money with companies that have the same values as me. So I decided that with Better Together Design Co. I wanted to create a space where people could come to see what’s trending in fashion, beauty, what I’m cooking, and also talk about shit that matters like police brutality, healthcare, human rights, and politics. I thought what better way than a podcast. I love listening to podcasts and got the idea from a coworker (shout out to Clarissa) after listening to the rant I went on about it on Instagram. It was like taking my original plan and merging it with my current plan and it just….. feels right.

So here we are. I hope that this is a space for people to be inspired to live their life the way that they want. That they know they can equally care about lipgloss as they do about what’s happening in Congress this week. Hence, the podcast name Lipgloss and Politics. We are allowed to be multi-faceted. We are allowed to follow our dreams and we can be whatever and whoever we want to be in this world. I can’t wait to start sharing podcast episodes, dope recipes, my skincare routine, and just life shit with you guys!

Stay tuned…. this is just the beginning.

This will continue to be the vibe around here and how we feel about society telling us how to live our lives and what makes you successful or not!

Janelle

nice to meet you

4/10/21