Charlotte's fifth birthday

March 2023 Highlights: The Highs + Lows

[shareaholic app=”share_buttons” id=”20872686″]

As the months tick by at an increasingly more rapid speed, our calendar continues to get fuller. March was the last month in some time where we had a few solid stretches of time at home, and we took advantage of it by getting a leg up on house work before being gone again.

Daffodil Days in Bell Buckle

In March, I only spent one night away from home—and that was at a friend’s house for a post-Ryman show sleepover—but there were a lot of long days driving anywhere from three to six hours round-trip. It was also my best girl’s fifth birthday, so we celebrated Charlotte in true style: with lots of glitter and plenty of sequins (which she, adorably, refers to as pearls).

Charlotte's fifth birthday

Charlotte's fifth birthday
Charlotte's fifth birthday
Charlotte's fifth birthday

The Highs

I wrote about DIY projects for Washington Post. A home design story about creative projects you can accomplish with a gallon of paint? Sounds right up my alley! I also loved getting to talk to several home design experts I adore like Banyan Bridges. It was fun to see it trend as a top story and also be picked up as the lead for the WaPo’s homes newsletter.

Washington Post story on DIY paint projects

My Bourbon+ stories hit newsstands. I wrote a pair of city profiles on Nashville and Knoxville for this spirits-focused magazine. This is one of those rare print-only publications, which I kind of love, so if you want to read it, you’ll have to buy it or subscribe.

Bourbon+ Stories by Kristin Luna

Bourbon+ Stories by Kristin Luna

Bourbon+ Stories by Kristin Luna

We had some fun brand shoots. In the past few years, we’ve really stepped up our game with the kinds of photo projects we take on, and one of the most fulfilling has been working with our friends at the local distilleries. It’s been a creative flex for me, too, since I don’t love post-processing, but I’m always learning new tricks.

Photo shoot for George Dickel

Likewise, we did our first real estate shoot for a house listing. A 13,000-square-foot home is no joke to photograph, but again, it was fun to problem-solve!

We photographed Daffodil Days for the Town of Bell Buckle. I’m continuously impressed how much Bell Buckle is able to do in a single year, especially for being such a small town! You can read my guide to Bell Buckle here.

Daffodil Days in Bell Buckle

Mom and I took the kids to Chattanooga. My long-time industry pal Terry and her family came up to Tennessee for Spring Break, and Mom and I used it as an excuse to take the kiddos to Ruby Falls and the Tennessee Aquarium. We initially planned to do Rock City and the Incline Railway, too, but they were wiped by mid-afternoon.

Downtown Chattanooga for Spring Break

Our public art nonprofit finished our first mural of the season. As part of a two-mural project, we went to Madisonville to paint this entire commercial building—all four sides of it—and, two days later, Nathan Brown arrived to paint this mural on the square-facing wall. How rad is that?

Madisonville mural by Nathan Brown
Madisonville mural by Nathan Brown

The Lows

March was an incredibly tough month for the South as a whole, but particularly in Tennessee. A devastating tornado that robbed people of their homes and loved ones was immediately followed by a heartbreaking mass shooting in Nashville, and our community throughout the region will never be the same.

It’s a weird time being a journalist and a content creator who focuses on “fun” things like travel, food and home design, as I feel like I’m constantly in start-and-stop mode with publishing blog posts, journalistic articles for clients and social media moments. Oftentimes, I’ve just hit publish on something when I read about yet another shooting or natural disaster. It feels like the world as a whole just can’t catch a break.

It’s also hard to keep up with it all in general. But the Nashville shooting, in particular, rocked my soul and broke my heart. Of all the tragedies in recent years, it seemed the one that hit closest to home with so many single degrees of separation from the victims and their families.

My Favorites of the Month

On a lighter note, if you need a palate cleanser to get you through these weird times, here are some things I loved last month.

Favorite book: Daisy Jones & The Six (I finally read it!)

Favorite audiobook: Catch and Kill, narrated by Ronan Farrow

Favorite movie: I don’t think I watched any last month! Give me your current favorites.

Favorite TV show: Yellowjackets (Showtime) and Ginny & Georgia (Netflix)

What were your favorite books, movies, shows from March?

You can read all past monthly recaps here.


Leave a Comment