I was excited that my sweet friend and now mentor, Catherine Grace O’Connell, asked me to join the Bridging the Gap campaign a few months ago. Her vision to unite Millennial & Midlife generations to end divisions of all kinds is truly inspiring and I am privileged to be a part of a cause that promotes unity and “Reciprocal Mentorship”. Today’s launch of Bridging the Gap brings together 200 Influencers who have committed to take part in a campaign to promote awareness and bring about social change. All woman, despite disparate demographics, have so much to offer one another. #WeAreStrongerTogether.
From our first conversation over the phone, Karen and I instantly connected and discovered that despite our age differences, how much in common we have. Karen and I share a love for fashion, interpersonal and deep connections and the desire to add value in the lives of others and make a difference in this world. We also both love the beach!
Karen grew up in Santa Rosa and still lives in Sonoma County with her 2 children. Karen is an incredible mother and one of her biggest accomplishments is how she raised her kids to become incredible individuals. She has a sweet son, Matthew, who makes her feel loved by giving her hugs and telling her he loves her every day. Her Daughter, Hailey, is loving and caring and very creative! She’s a self-taught photographer and even helps Karen edit some of her photos for her blog. She enjoys traveling with her children and next February, Karen and her daughter will be going to NY to attend spring 2018 NYFW which is so exciting! On Karen’s bucket list are also attending Fashion Week in Paris and Milan.
There are so many things in life that you can be passionate about and this message is something that Karen really wants to express. Karen chose a career that provided security for herself and her family, but she didn’t let that stop her from her passions of travel and fashion. She saw an opportunity to express herself when she took her love for photography and started posting photos of her outfits, travel and nature. She also shared her joy of baking and love of shoes with her friends and followers. Karen shares that she is proud that she didn’t let her age stop her from starting her blog even though it was something that almost made her not go through with it. With the encouragement of her friends and family, she decided to take the leap into the world of blogging. After meeting Catherine and joining the Fierce 50 campaign back in February, Karen’s blog really took off. Karen is a passionate and genuine woman who desires to inspire people to follow their passions and purpose and to live a life full of “joie de vivre.”
On her blog, you will you will be inspired by her classic style. Her last post features her in a gorgeous silk wrap dress and white booties, something that I could also see myself wearing on a day out with my girlfriends! Most importantly, you will get to know her kind heart and see the love she has for her friends and life experiences.
Besides her love of fashion, photography and travel, Karen also is passionate about cycling. One thing that you might not know about Karen is that she has ridden in 3 Levi’s GranFondo rides in Sonoma County. Levi Leipheimer’s King Ridge GranFondo is a mass participation bicycle ride held each autumn and draws over 7000 athletes from all over the world. Karen participates in the intermediate Medio course which is about 65 miles and plans to ride again next October for the 10 year anniversary.
Here are some more questions to learn a little more about Karen:
What is your philosophy on life? Live life to the fullest and in the moment. Don’t let fear get in the way of living your passion or following our dreams.
What’s something that makes you really happy? Having a great time (laughing, joking, sharing stories, deep conversations, rich experiences) with people I am surrounded by.
What is a valuable life lesson that you’ve learned? When I was diagnosed with a non-malignant brain tumor when I was 44, I learned that every day counts and being with the people you love is what matters most.
Anything else that you would like people to know about you? I am a passionate and caring person who cares deeply for people in my life. I would do anything at the drop of a hat for the people I love.
I am so happy to get to know Karen through this campaign and hope to continue to develop our friendship! During our conversations, I’ve realized how much we have in common: our dreams, goals and even struggles. We both want to live a life of kindness, feel part of a community and to provide value to the lives of others. Being a part of Bridging the Gap has made me realize that there is no gap – that all woman, despite our diverse demographics have so much to learn from one another. Thank you Karen for sharing your life with us and Catherine for bringing us together!