The Secret I Learned During The Chico’s 35 Years Bold Anniversary Celebration

Let’s Celebrate Chico’s Being 35 Years Bold

Many of you have probably heard me talking about the Chico’s 35 Year Bold Anniversary Celebration in Florida last week. You might have even read a little about it in my Real Chic Recap. I wanted to delve a little deeper and virtually take you with me on the 3-day journey and then I want to tell you a secret. I discovered something about myself on the trip and I want to share that with you too.

So, it all started with one of those emails that always makes me dance around the room. Thank goodness there’s no video of that or you might stop reading right here. Needless to say, I was very excited to be invited to Sanibel Island to celebrate the 35 Year anniversary of one of my favorited brands. Excited might be an understatement. I was over the moon!

When I landed in Florida on the first day I was met by two familiar beautiful faces near baggage claim. Chic Over 50 and The Silver Stylist were waiting there too. Once I arrived at the Pink Shell Beach Resort I entered my room where there were so many fun gifts from Chico’s including a monogrammed sunhat with my IG handle!


I met the rest of the attendees on the beach for nibbles, cocktails and even a steel drummer. There were several familiar faces and even a few new ones but we all gelled quickly.

Day two was a tour of Chico’s FAS Headquarters. It’s a whole campus, you guys! They have a gym, childcare and dining rooms. We got a chance to see behind the scenes and even watched someone hand painting designs. I don’t think I’ll ever get that amazing image out of my mind. We also got to meet their fit model and learn about the technology that goes into sizing. Their mock store had all the fun fall stuff and I love fall clothing so it was basically a little slice of heaven. Heaven and animal prints? Yes, please! Our listening session was basically us brainstorming with the powers that be at Chico’s. We talked about representation, body image, the importance of fit, being bold and so much more.

After that, we went shopping in the first ever Chico’s store on Sanibel Island (cutest boutique ever) and then had lunch at Sweet Melissa’s Cafe. We rounded out the evening with a dinner party and sunset cruise where if you saw my insta story you know there were even dolphins who let me film them jumping out of the water at just the right time! It was seriously a dream my friends.


The next morning, we had yoga on the beach. I love yoga but it was my first time actually doing it on a beach. I kept thinking it was going to be so hot, but it was perfect! I mean it was hot… but the breeze off of the ocean was cool and you can’t beat the beach for the best sounds while your eyes are closed. It was amazing! The whole trip really was. But here is what I discovered.

On both nights a handful of us went to the bar for drinks and girl chat and I am never one to say no to either of those options, so of course, I was right there. Listening to all of those women who are basically killing it, made me realize that I was selling myself short… in my own mind.


Time to Face My Fear

I keep saying how I love it, but it’s my part-time thing, or that I am new to all of this and still learning, and I am not sure why I am here. But you know what I’m not new and I am here! I deserve to be here and it makes my heart happy! I realized the reason I was acting like it was no big deal and just a small part of my life was because I was afraid. What if I failed? What if it didn’t work out? Then I could just shrug it off and say it was just a side thing I was trying out but when you love something you don’t get to be half in. You have to put your whole self in and rise above your fears. So you know what? I am a blogger and an influencer and I’m here for the long haul! I’m all in and if it doesn’t work out it won’t be because I did it half-heartedly!  Nope, I’m using my whole heart…and If amazing brands like Chico’s and O, The Oprah Magazine believe in me then I am going to believe in me too. And the best part is that I know without a doubt, that you’re going to be there for me either way!

Have you ever had to get real with yourself and state your fears out loud? It’s a pretty BOLD thing to do friends. I would love to hear about how bold you are too!

Until Next Post,

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*This was a hosted event by Chico’s but all opinions expressed here are as usual my own





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Tonya Parker is a counselor, author and certified life coach who believes in helping women look and feel their best! Ambassador for O, The Oprah Magazine and author of Single Mom Chic

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