May's Most Popular Episodes


I love starting new projects. Hence, my recent announcement that I'm getting ready to change a lottt of things 'round here. If you missed it, you can watch this to get caught up on the deets. And speaking of new projects, welcome to this fun new monthly feature where I'll share with you the most downloaded episodes of the podcast every month. 

I have zero clue how it's already June, but I'm embracing the beginnings of the humid southern summer - wait, that's a lie, I'm really just turning up the AC and the wine - and reminiscing on the badass line-up of women that came on the podcast in May.

I may be biased, but the May line-up was on fi-yahhh! Here were your fave episodes. Or well, the ones you downloaded the most! 


#1 | Episode 98: Becoming an Artist with Amira Rahim 

I think our becomings happen so gradually that we don't even notice it until we've finally bloomed. The blooming part always seems so serendipitous, too. Because we had no idea we were becoming all along.

In this episode, I sit down with Amira Rahim, a contemporary abstract expressionist painter, to hear the story of how she became an artist.

It wasn't all paint clothes and easel and painting on the side of the streets until she got her big break - I know, that's what I expected, too.

It was more law school and trying out different jobs until one simple line from a movie changed everything for her - it was that serendipitous moment of her becoming.

Amira shares about how she went from blogging about her art to working full-time as an artist, what changes when your art becomes a business, dealing with negative feedback, and getting comfortable with fear.


#2 | Episode 101: Redefining it All with Chelsea Laine Francis

There's nothing like stalking someone on Instagram for months and feeling like you really know them and then sitting down with them for a podcast soul chat and realizing they're really far more amazing than you ever could have guessed through IG's tiny, square lens.


In this episode, I sat down with Chelsea Laine Francis, a photographer based in Austin, TX, to learn about her story - from fitting women in bras at Lane Bryant to buying her first camera to moving across the country and rather than working at Target, just happening to launch a professional photography career.

Ok. So, there's a lot more to the story than that. But I'll let Chelsea do the story-telling.

If the wild coincidences of the universe somehow led you right here, though, and you know the fear of taking leaps and then redefining everything, this convo is your heartbeat. I'm glad you're here.


#3 | Episode 104: From Wedding Planner to Entrepreneur with Kat Schmoyer

10 months. That's how long it took this lady from starting her business to launching one of the biggest creative conferences in the country. 17 months. That's how long it took her to take her wedding planning business full-time. And now, 3 years in, she's running 3 different brands, managing a team of wedding planners, and planning her 7th conference.

I know. I feel tired, too. Her energy is palpable, though. Just you wait until you listen!

In this episode, I sat down with Kat Schmoyer, the founder of Dear Sweetheart Events and The Creative At Heart conference (and our wedding planner #funfact), to chat about her journey. We talk about the whirlwind that has been the past three years for her and how in the world she manages it all (or doesn't - the hard parts, too, of course).

I also ask Kat about how she handled things when the conference came under fire last year and received some pretty brutal public backlash. We also chat about why this past year has been so difficult for her and how she's moved through things like grief and loss and miscarriage while still trying to run these businesses.

It's 50 minutes of amazing. So, what are you waiting for? Let's dive right in.


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The 5 Most Downloaded Podcast Episodes


I've been wanting to share these for awhile. And what better timing than in celebration of the 100th freaking episode of the podcast!!! 

Ohh, if only I could travel back in time 15 months and 6 days ago to the day the podcast aired and fill myself in on all that would happen during the next 100 episodes and the badass ladies I'd get to chat with (past Lauren: it's pretty epic and they're really effing badass).

I know you're sitting on the edge of your seat, dying to know. Yeah right. You've already scrolled down to see. 

But anywho, let the countdown begin.

My loves, I give you the top 5 most downloaded podcast episodes - starting with numero cinco!


#5 | Episode 1: Introducing the Grit and Glitter Podcast

Here's where it all began folks. This is a short one. But I share my heart behind creating the podcast and why I embarked on this wild adventure. 


#4 | Episode 56: When a Stroke Changes Your Life with Danae Edmonds

Of all the podcast guests, I think I've known Danae the longest. We connected back in the old days when I was still doing NBN (that stands for Nothin' but Nola, my first biz - a granola company). In this episode, she shares her story. She's remarkable.


#3 | Episode 2: Things Don't Always Go As Planned & Sometimes We Outgrow Our Labels with Heather Spooner

Oh, sweet heavens, of all women that are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Heather was one of the first people I shared my idea for the podcast with. She came on the podcast again for another amazing convo, but in episode 2, she shared her story. And it's good. She's amazing. You really should listen.


#2 | Episode 68: Finding Passion & Purpose Amidst Pain & Suffering with Ruthie Lindsey

This was one of those amazing moments for me. When I reached out to Ruthie to ask her to come on the podcast, I was nervous. She has a huge following. But I was so enthralled by her, her story, and her radiant joy despite it all that I couldn't not at least try. Ruthie is the human embodiment of sunshine. And this conversation is sooo good.


#1 | Episode 41: Unapologetically Becoming Your Most Authentic Self with Jolie Ankrom

The. Most. Downloaded. Episode. Say what?! If you know Jolie, you know why this is the most downloaded podcast episode. She's as real as they get, folks. No. Sugar. Coating. It's the most refreshing breath of fresh air. Take it or leave it. And if you don't know Jolie, well, the episode is waiting, my love!


I'm Doing The Podcast Full-Time (and I'm documenting it alll!)


Oh, hi there, love!!

In case you haven't heard, I’m on a journey to turn the podcast into a profitable business (not scary at all; nope). Every Sunday, I’ll sit down and record it all - the fears, the doubts, the insecurities, and the struggles, as well as the progress, the excitement, and real-time updates.

Here's when I made the big A-N-N-O-U-N-C-E-M-E-N-T.

Subscribe on YouTube so you don't miss the weekly updates!


Oh snap. It's blog official. But it's been YouTube official for two weeks now, so if you don't know, girl, allow me to catch you up...


Here's the short story:

I'm going full-time on the podcast.


Here's the long(er) story:

I've been working with freelance clients (doing marketing work) for the past year or so - ever since starting the podcast. The podcast hasn't been a money-making machine (that's about to change - said with that confidence that I'm hella faking like a boss 'til I'm making it like a boss). In fact, it's made no money. At all.

So, I'm going all in. Or full-time. Or whatever you want to call not-doing-other-work-and-solely-focusing-on-the-podcast. 

Oh, and no, the podcast still isn't making money. Yet.

Call me crazy. I'll take it. Because, honestly, the whole making-your-dream-a-reality requires a little bit of crazy.


Here's the video:

I share wayyy more details (and tears and fears) here. So, just hit play and get on to the good stuff...!


Want to help support me on this wild pod-venture?

You can buy me a latte. Just once a month.

What I really mean is, for less than the cost of a latte (which I do loveee), you can support me (and the podcast) through Patreon.

You pledge $3 a month (or $1 or $2 or $5 or whatever you feel like supporting with) and get access to all the podcast behind-the-scenes that I share on Patreon. By the way, there's nowhere else on the planet (or the internet) to get these BTS questions and bloopers. So, it makes you kinda special - and badass.

There's 10 other podcast supporters already over there, so come join the party. It'd mean the world. 


If you missed it, I shared more about taking the leap on the podcast, too, in episode 93!


Creativepreneur Feature with Jen K. Calligraphy: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)


"My biggest challenge as a creativepreneur? I have to name one!? Haha. I’d have to say comparison. That’s the biggest one for me."


Tell us about your creative journey.

I’ve always been pretty artistic, whether it was performing in local plays or making jewelry for fun when I was younger, I’ve always been creative. I’ve also always loved typography and the beautiful form of calligraphy.  Three years ago after my daughter was born I saw a local calligraphy class but missed the deadline for registration. That Christmas my husband surprised me with a 12 week course in Copperplate Calligraphy by a local master calligrapher. It was very detailed and technical and also difficult but I was hooked and since then have been practicing all kinds of lettering from the very formal Copperplate style to super fun brush lettering. I love it all! I started out designing Prints and now have transitioned into the wedding industry more with place cards, envelope addressing, and invitation design.


What's your biggest challenge as a creativepreneur?

My biggest challenge as a creativepreneur? I have to name one!? Haha. I’d have to say comparison. That’s the biggest one for me.  I have to remind myself constantly that this is MY journey and that “her success is not your failure” –whoever said that is right on the money! 


What's your advice for other creativepreneurs for creating courageously?

I’d say do just that. Be brave. Running a creative biz is not for the faint of heart. Believe in yourself, find at least one person who will spur you on in this journey, Practice your craft as much as you can and just keep going!


Download Some Inspiration

Add a little inspiration to your phone or computer with these wallpapers designed by Jen and featuring quotes from the podcast.


Creativepreneur Feature with Alexis Anne Creative: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)


"I am an artist, but it has taken me a long time to get to the point where I can say that about myself without including any sort of a self-deprecating preamble."


Tell us about your creative journey.

Hi I’m Alexis from, and owner of the etsy shop, Dashes of Happiness.

I am an artist, but it has taken me a long time to get to the point where I can say that about myself without including any sort of a self-deprecating preamble. I am actually trained as a scientist - I have a Bachelor’s degree in Neuroscience and a Master’s degree in Cell Biology.  It’s a long, winding story, but for as much as I learned through my training to get those degrees, I was never really happy when I was working in my field. It takes a special kind of person to be a research biologist, and I was not that kind of person. When my first daughter was born, I left my career to stay home and raise her. After staying home for several years, I realized that even though I didn’t want to go back to work in the typical sense, I wanted and needed a creative outlet for myself.  I did a bunch of different things to try to scratch that itch, but it wasn’t until I discovered art that I really felt like I had found my thing. 

I never knew how to draw, and I never did anything with paint other than roll it on a wall in my house. But I went to one of those wine and paint nights where they walk you through the steps of a painting while you chill with your girlfriends, and I just loved it. I realized that art was no different from any other skill - it could be taught - and I was eager to learn. So, I took a ton of different art classes and just started making things for people, and then more people started asking me to make things for them… so eventually I decided to open up an Etsy shop and see if I could sell it to strangers, as well. 

The more that I paint and the more that I learn and explore different styles and techniques, the more that I feel like all of this art was always inside of me. It just never knew how to get out. 


What's your biggest challenge as a creativepreneur?

My biggest challenge is that there is no handbook for this. I can’t tell you how many stupid things I type into google on a daily basis because running my own creative business means that I need to wear all of the hats. I’ve googled my way to competency on everything from figuring out Photoshop to understanding sales tax nexus. It can be overwhelming at times to be honest, and sometimes I feel like I am doing everything the hard way. But I try to take a step back and look at how far I’ve come, and how much I’ve learned since I started this thing, and it’s a good feeling to see that I’ve taught myself so much.  


What's your advice for other creativepreneurs for creating courageously?

Baby steps. I say this all of the time, but I have come to realize that it’s exactly the way that my business was built, and I can look back and see that only through a series of baby steps was I able to get anywhere. I tend to get analysis paralysis - like if there are too many options for anything, I can’t chose any of them. And I won’t start something because I can’t figure out the entire process. Literally, not being able to decide what kind of paper to print my art prints on kept me from moving forward for much longer than I want to admit. 

But I’ve learned that I have to force myself to shut it all out and just creep forward in whatever direction I can move in without having a panic attack.  Do that one tiny thing that you know you can do today, make one itty bitty baby decision and don’t second guess it. Then tomorrow, do one more tiny thing. Pretty soon, the tiny things aren’t as scary, so your steps get bigger without any effort, and then one day you’ll turn around and go, “Oh my gosh, look how far I’ve come!” 


Download Some Inspiration

Add a little inspiration to your phone or computer with these wallpapers designed by Alexis and featuring quotes from the podcast.


October: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)

Ah! There's thirty-one days this month! Hallelujah! I'm pretty sure october wallpaper post has been scribbled in my weekly to do list (and marked off. and re-written. and marked off again. and re-written again.) for ah, about four weeks now. So, I thought it was about damn time that I get around to sharing these beauties with your sweet faces.

The lesson?

Give yourself grace. You're doing a ton of kickass shit and sometimes some of it gets procrastinated (definitely not the correct use of the term, but it'll do). Sometimes tomorrow's "must do" becomes next month's "maybe I'll do". And sometimes we get things done and sometimes we don't. But when you do move through that one thing and finally accomplish it, I hope you'll give yourself that moment, my love. I hope you'll give yourself that moment to sit and bask in the sunlight of "yes i can" .. because you did.

And for all of those other days, download one of these so you can look at your computer or phone for a quick and gentle reminder.




Kristin is the girlboss and creator behind Simple Perks, a paper goods company. She's also the creator of this month's inspirational wallpapers. Check out her website and give this sweet lady some love on Instagram!


Need more inspiration?

Fill your heart with the real, raw, soul-filled conversation on the #GritandGlitterPodcast, sweet dreamer!

September: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)

You know I love a good story. Especially an inspiring one about a dreamer chasing her big, scary dream and making it a reality! I feel so lucky and honored to have worked with an amazing girl boss on this month's wallpapers who recently took the leap and made her big, scary dream a reality.

The best part? Listening to episode 8 of the podcast inspired her to chase this dream.

So, I asked Kelli to share her story, in hopes that it may inspire some of you to chase your dream, too.

Congrats on your new biz and chasing your big, beautiful dream, Kelli! Tell us all about it and how it came to be!

Growing up I was always the "girl with the good handwriting." And after having multiple friends ask me to make them signs for their weddings I thought this was something that I might really enjoy! I had heard Maghon's story and how it all started with a set of cards and thought "Oh, that must be how you start! With cards!" So I went and bought some cards and that was going to be my thing. But a couple weeks in, I wasn't really loving it. And then it hit me "Why am I doing cards? Is it just because that's what worked for someone else?" So since then, I've mostly been doing wooden signs, because that's what I love to do! Fun fact: Sometimes I get so attached to the signs that I make that I think about keeping them to hang in my own home. Then I realize it might be ridiculous to have all of these wooden signs hanging up all over my house, so I take a picture to remember them instead!

How did the podcast inspire you to chase this dream?

I listened to the episode with Maghon from All She Wrote Notes and was totally inspired to go home and start my Etsy shop. I had been toying with the idea for a long time, but was just always so unsure in my abilities. I always thought "there's someone better out there, why would anyone buy from me?" But after listening to this podcast, I just decided to go for it! I'm sure everyone probably deals with that at some point, so I figured I wasn't alone!

If you could give one piece of advice to other dreamers out there who are thinking about launching their business, but are doubting themselves, what would it be?

Don't worry about what other people are doing! Instagram was a place for me to really put that into practice! I had to stop looking at other calligrapher's/hand-letterer's work because it was making me feel worse about my own, and that's not okay! Just as Caroline put it "If you stay true to yourself, you have no competition."


Now, download some pretties for your phone + computer and go chase your big, scary dreams!





Kelli is the girlboss and hand-letter behind KG Letters! Check out her Etsy shop and give this sweet lady a little love on Instagram!

August: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)

If I've learned anything, it's that inspiration doesn't just show up on your doorstep. You have to surround yourself with it. You have to hang it on your walls, sprinkle it throughout your home and obnoxiously tape, glue, paste, or staple it to any space you can find.

I have inspirational quotes hanging on my walls. Photos that inspire me all around the house. I'm inspired by color, so my living room looks like a rainbow took a big dump. It's amazing. And since I spend the majority of my time with my eyes glued on my computer or my phone, I always have a cute, inspirational background set for both of them. I used to peruse Pinterest trying to find the perfect phone/computer wallpapers. Now, I get to work with badass girl bosses to create them!

Needless to say, I whole-heartedly believe in surrounding yourself with inspiration.

And lucky for you, it's a new month which means new pretties for your computer and phone!

This month, I worked with Jessica of Sugar & Grace Creative to create these beauties from episode 11 and episode 13 of the podcast! Her work is breath-taking! THIS one is my all-time fave that she shared on Insta!

Check out the pretties she created below and download your fave for your phone + computer. You deserve a little inspiration!


Grit and Glitter Co. | August Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)
Grit and Glitter Co. | August Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)
Grit and Glitter Co. | Sugar & Grace Creative | August Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)

Jessica is the girlboss behind Sugar & Grace Creative! She is a custom wedding stationery designer based in NJ! Check out her website and give this sweet lady a little love on Instagram!

July: Free Wallpapers (Desktop + Phone)

The best part of what I do is the people I get to meet. These badass boss ladies that I'm connecting with are some of the most amazing human beings I've ever met. The real, raw, truths that fill their souls and fuel their lives is utterly inspiring.

I met Kercia on Twitter. In the online world, your memory of meeting someone can be a little fuzzy. But I remember one thing about my first impression of Kercia - her words. Her words rocked my soul. Her words have this force and power that will crack your heart open, push you towards more, and fill you unlike anything I've ever experienced. So, naturally, I had to get to know her more ... and I asked her to design these beautiful wallpapers for your phone and computer with more powerful words! Because her design ... #allthehearteyes!

I was lucky enough to have a Skype date with Kercia last name. People. Oh, my people. Go get to know her more HERE, HERE, and HERE. And go read her words - on Instagram and on Twitter. They. Will. Fill. You. Up. And you won't be sorry. She is our kind of people. She is good. She is great. She is real. She is inspiring. And her truth-filled words that bleed soul-deep may just change your life ... or your mindset ... or your day.

Kercia created these two B-E-A-utiful backgrounds from episode 6 and episode 8 of the podcast! Good luck picking a favorite! :)

Grit and Glitter Podcast | Kercia Jane | Desktop | iPhone | Wallpaper | Background
Grit and Glitter Podcast | Kercia Jane | Desktop | iPhone | Wallpaper | Background
Grit and Glitter Co | Kercia Jane



Kercia Jane is the amazing calligrapher and designer behind these wallpapers. Be sure to give her some love on Instagram.

Wedding Day Recap: Just a Girl + A Boy (part one)

It's finally here! All the photos and an hour-by-hour (or close enough) recap of our wedding day! Part one! There are a million photos I want to share with you (don't worry! I weeded out a few dozen), so I'm having to break the wedding day recap up into two separate blog posts!

Today, we'll go through the day, from waking up to saying "I do"! Tomorrow, we'll party ;)

7a | Room Service Wake-Up Call & Breakfast In Bed

I spent the night before the wedding with some of the most incredible friends and got to snuggle my soon-to-be sister-in-law! It was the greatest! We had an early morning start and wanted to make sure we ate, so we ordered room service for breakfast the night before! We woke up to room service knocking at our door right at 7a and had breakfast in bed!! Best. Alarm. Ever. It was seriously the most wonderful way to start the day! Then I hopped in the shower before heading out ... because you know, you should at least shave your legs for wedding day!


8:15a | Oh heyyy, ladies!

All of the girls met in the hotel lobby right at 8:15a to head to the salon!

9a | Hair Pretties + Gifts for the Bride

Hair began right at 9a at the salon in downtown Asheville. We had hair/makeup going on from 9a-2p, so while each girl was getting her hair done, the rest of us hung out in the cutest bridal room! We had champagne! Mom brought Panera for lunch (yes!) and throughout the morning, I received the sweetest notes and gifts from my soon-to-be hubba hubba hubby, delivered by his amazing groomsmen!

The first gift was a dozen long-stem roses (swoon!). The second gift was a box of a dozen of the most amazing chocolate truffles from French Broad Chocolate in downtown Asheville (he knows the way to my heart). And the third gift was 3 bottles of wine: one for our honeymoon, one for our first year anniversary, and one for our fifth anniversary. Heart. Melted. Can we get married already?!


2:30p | All Prettied Up!

Once hair and makeup was complete, we headed back to the hotel to get dressed & ready for photos with the fabulous Hope Taylor!!!!

3p | It's time to get ready!!

Let the party begin :)


3:45p | Pop the Bubbly!

We hopped aboard the shuttle to the venue and started right away with photos and champagne!!

Life Lesson: When someone hands you a bottle of champagne, don't chug it. Instead .. sip .. like a boss! (...keep scrolling)!!! :)


6p | Let's get marriiieeeddd!!!

There are no words. That view. These people. That man. My heart.


Introducing ... Mr. and Mrs. Frontiera!!!!

Stay tuned tomorrow for the pic party that followed!!!


Lauren Frontiera