Faces of Friday: Hilary Verhaeghe

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The purpose of Faces of Friday:

Faces of Friday is a new interview-based series that I am launching to provide readers with insight into the lives of some of the unique, inspiring, & influential people I have had the honor of meeting/ knowing. Life can take you to unexpected places and the people you will meet throughout the series are willing to share with you where their lives have taken them.

I believe that one of the most important things in this life is the connection we share with one another. Identifying with another human being is an amazing gift, and it can inspire you to learn, grow, create, and open your eyes to what the world has to offer.  We are not alone in this crazy thing called life.  Life is a beautiful thing filled with beautiful people, and not everyone gets the opportunity to share their story. I want to provide others the opportunity to share their story and I want to give you the chance to hear it, learn from it, and maybe, just maybe, identify with it. I believe wholeheartedly that we were all meant for incredible things.  I hope you enjoy reading these stories, and I hope that they touch you in some way. We are all learning to navigate life’s murky waters, why not learn from each other along the way?

Hilary- 

Whether you know it or not you are a very inspiring individual! I have never met someone with such a positive outlook on life, and someone with such a sunny disposition.  I don’t know if you remember this or not, but when you and I first met (what 8 years ago?!?) and were getting to know each other, I was complaining about something. I don’t remember what that something was exactly, I think I was comparing myself to someone prettier/skinnier. You rightfully put me in my place saying, “Kasey, you should be grateful for all that you have, there are other people in this world that are starving and fighting for their lives.” At the time I was flabbergasted, I was a 20 year old who thought you were being dramatic, and a bit harsh. However, that comment has stuck with me and whenever I feel down about myself, I always think about how grateful I am for all that I have. I am so glad to have met you, you gave me a more positive and realistic perspective on life!

That being said, a lot has changed since we met 8 years ago! We have both since moved and have been a bit out of touch, but we have been following each other via social media. You are doing incredible things! Tell us about them!

Where are you from?

Geneva, Illinois, a small town where everyone knows everyone.

Where do you live currently?

Naperville, Illinois, which is only 30 min from Geneva. It's a bigger suburb with more things to do!

Did you pursue higher education?  What did you study?

I went to Scottsdale Community College for a year and then esthetics school in Arizona. I attempted college one more time at DeVry - Tried it online and am still attempting to graduate.

What do you do for a living? Is this always what you had planned to be doing?

I'm an esthetician. I've worked with doctors in a Med Spa, a retail store that sold skin care, and now I work at the spa at Trump in Chicago.  

I always saw myself in the skincare industry. I love seeing the changes I can make to the skin and I love making the client happy. I also teach at Pure Barre, which is a 55 minute workout that utilizes a ballet barre to perform small isometric movements.  That's something I didn't see myself doing, but I couldn't be happier being a part of it. I have met so many amazing women it's been a whirlwind! When I moved to Naperville I started to teach at another Pure Barre studio because they were closer to me, but continue to teach in Geneva. I just love to be busy!

What inspired you to start The Muffin Movement?

This is what inspired The Muffin Movement and what inspires me to keep going each day:

Friday October 25th I went out to Paris club with coworkers from The Trump. That night my purse was stolen, a Tory Burch bag that I bought myself for my birthday!  I had just purchases a new car that Friday, and was in a hurry to head downtown, keeping both of the keys in my purse. As the night unraveled I realized my purse was gone, and everything inside; cash, house keys, new car keys, paperwork for the car, checkbook, everything!  I cancelled all my cards, opened a new bank account, bought new car keys (which was 340 dollars, because they needed to be programmed.) During all the chaos I realized something, it’s just a purse. Here I was missing a bag when there are people on the streets, who are hungry. It didn’t make sense. That next week I started baking apple muffins and giving them to the homeless. Little did I know just how amazing it would make me feel! Four weeks later I receive a call from O’Callagans, a downtown Chicago bar, they had my purse.

I picked it up and EVERYTHING WAS INSIDE; karma at it’s finest. Fast-forward three months, and I have created a movement!

It's been absolutely beautiful how this has unfolded. When I hear that I'm an inspiration, it inspires me even more - to know others want to make a difference because of what I am doing! I never thought of myself as someone who could make a difference. I will say I love who I'm becoming.

What is your personal mantra?

Love this! I use some for different purposes.

When I'm feeling overwhelmed “Wherever you are be all there.”

Resisting change/tasks “Feel the fear and do it anyways.”

The best of all “If you play by the rules you miss all the fun.” You can find my picture next to that saying in the 2005 Geneva high school yearbook!

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Has life taken unexpected turns? And if so what were they?

Each day is an unexpected turn. You can't really expect anything. We can plan as much as we want, but it's life and that's the beauty of it. I've learned to appreciate all the roller coaster rides life has to offer.:)

What is the best piece of advice you have been given?

I actually had to think about this question. You would think a women at 28 years old would have been given some sort of advice.. But the only type I can think about is what not to do when dating. Hahaha

If you could give advice to your younger self, what would it be?

Everything is going to be fine. Learn to forgive yourself so your future can be bright. Love yourself more and more each day.

To learn more about The Muffin Movement click here.