Women I Admire

Meet Hil the Thrill!

It’s time for another interview with one of the Women That I Admire!  I’m so pleased to introduce you to Hil (of Hil the Thrill), aka the Lucy to my Ethel.  Hil and I have been friends for …gosh…10 years now?!  We initially connected over shared experiences and realized that we were in kindred spirits in so many ways.  If I could build a tiny village for all of the people I love to live near me, Hil would certainly be across the street.

What I admire about Hil is her strength, her humor, and her dedication to her family.  She has overcame so many hardships to raise her two beautiful daughters into fun, beautiful, free spirits. Hil herself is a free spirit, an artist and a writer with a HUGE heart.  Did I mention that she is an artist?  She paints whimsical nature inspired paintings that perfectly capture her spirit.  Okay, okay, on to the interview:

NAME  Hil Eldridge “Hil The Thrill”

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AGE, HOMETOWN, OCCUPATION

35, Rednecktopia, Pa., Artist/Farmer’s Wife

ONE WEIRD FACT ABOUT YOU

I paint with both hands at the same time. The paint is in my left hand and a wet brush is in my right.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE VINTAGE STYLE

Edwardian. I’m dying for turbans with feathers to come back. I’m not kidding.

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WHO WAS YOUR FIST STYLE ICON?

Punky Brewster *

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WHO IS YOUR CURRENT INSPIRATION?

So many! Probably the biggest inspiration to me currently is the environment around me in rural Pennsylvania. I use my iPhone to take pictures every day, and this trains me to constantly be in the lookout for the beauty around me.

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HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR PERSONAL STYLE?

Post industrial utilitarian
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WHAT IS SOMETHING YOU LOVE ABOUT YOURSELF?

I love my hands because they can do so many things!

DO YOU HAVE A SELF-LOVE MOMENT TO SHARE WITH US?

I used to entirely live my life based on “what needed to be done,” regardless of how I felt, or what I liked, or needed. In this manner, I built for myself a “suitable” life, but not a juicy, joyful, passionate one. I became extremely ill with an autoimmune disease that took years to diagnose. I was depressed, in pain, and could not work. I had my affairs in order and I was ready to die.

At age 35, I began taking myself to the lake, and putting my ill, plus-sized body into a bikini for the first time in my life. I wasn’t there for an outing with the kids, or to accomplish anything for any one. I was really just there for my own enjoyment, my own oneness, my own quiet. I found myself coming back day after day, alone, while my daughters were at school. So decadent! And also, so free! This became a pivotal moment in changing my worldview.

I learned that “juiciness” is necessary for my health. You can eat right, exercise, have a full career, a balanced family life, and an organized sock drawer, but that electricity, that beauty, that connection to nature and the universe is BASIC. Without it, I was literally dying. The autoimmune disease was only the modality of my near death. The lack of “juiciness” was the reason for my near death.
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WHAT IS THE ONE THING THAT YOU REALLY SPLURGE ON FOR YOURSELF?

Time. I give myself and others time. When my kids were small, I went through a horrific marriage and divorce. I decided that I would be rich in time, for my kids and for myself. I work hard to make more time.

i just LOVE this answer and this is part of why I admire Hil so much! For me, when I think of splurging, I immediately list the items I purchase for myself, but she just doesn’t think in those terms.

WHAT IS ONE WAY THAT YOU WORK TO IMPROVE YOURSELF?

I discovered, through meditation at the age of fifteen, that the three pillars of life for me would be Art, Nature, and Spirituality. When I want to improve myself, I go towards one of those three things. I also love a good “Infinite Waters” YouTube video, where he says,”Breathe in that good ass PRANA!!!!”

HOW DO YOU PRACTICE DAILY SELF-CARE?

Coconut oil, Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar, Tumeric Tea, Kombacha, and throwing the ball for my dogs.
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Paintings By Hil Eldridge
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Find out more about Hil at:
Hilthethrill.wordpress.com
Or Instagram Hilthethrill
Or Facebook Hil Eldridge
Ask about custom painted canvas shoes!

Feminist Princesses

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I’ve been working on a blog post about great female superheroes to get your daughters started reading comic books.  I think comic books have evolved SO much in the past 25 years when I started reading them.  They are actually making a point of putting women in them that are strong and capable and intelligent – not just as love interests for the male superheroes.  It’s pretty great.  While googling “Gloria Steinem as a superhero” (because what feminist hasn’t googled that at least once, amiright?! (p.s. why hasn’t that been drawn yet? someone draw that please)) I discovered a great set of drawings of feminist women through the years AS DISNEY PRINCESSES.  This mashup makes me happy like whoa you would not believe.  I am printing them all and making them into paper dolls for my boyfriend’s three young daughters to play with.  I’m for real stoked about this!

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Found via the Atlantic.

Meet the Model: Megan

MEET: Megan Dawes

Megan is a dear friend of mine and is sweet enough to model some of my vintage wares from time to time. She is the owner of The Victory Parlor, an absolutely adorable little shop in downtown Herrin, Illinois, as well as one of the cosmetologists there.   One of my favorite things about Meg is her infectious optimism and sense of humor.  Meg is one of those people that is full of love and happiness at all times and it’s hard to resist her enthusiasm and laughter.  Not only is Meg a total sweetheart – she runs a business (which I’m learning is no easy feat) and has been cosmetologist and self-love advocate for six years, and she’s only 24-years old! Not to mention, she’s the only person that my extremely picky 15-year-old will allow to touch her hair!

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Occupation
Salon owner and cosmetologist at The Victory Parlor.

What is your favorite vintage style?

I love 1940’s pinup style.

Who was your first style icon?
Audrey Hepburn!

Who is your current inspiration?

Joan Jett!

How would you describe your personal style?

A mix of several different eras with my own twist.

What is something that you love about yourself?

I’m very ambitious! I set goals and then I make it happen.

Do you have a self-love moment to share with us?

Opening my own salon when I was only 23! It was a lot of hard work, but I knew it was what I wanted to do so I put in the work that was needed. It has been very rewarding.

What is the one thing that you really splurge on for yourself?

Whatever catches my eye! It could be clothing, jewelry, or food. I like rewarding myself for my hard work.

What is one way that you work to improve yourself?

Yoga was new territory for me and truly changed how I viewed my health. It’s an excellent way to keep stress down and to clear my head.

How do you practice daily self-care?

Most days at work, you’ll catch me in something cute and comfy without any makeup on. I think it’s extremely important working in my industry to show women that you don’t have to look like a barbie all of the time.

How do you help other women to embrace their own self-love?

I have been a licensed cosmetologist for going on six years. I’ve performed everything from makeup applications, to waxing, to hair transformations, to nails over the years. Opening my shop up has allowed me to reach out to individuals that are going through a struggle, which is my favorite way to help. We are always donating services to charity events and to those who really need a pick-me-up, regardless if money is an issue or not. The most rewarding feeling is bringing a smile to someone’s face and watching their confidence when they feel and look good.

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