INTRODUCING KELLY JOHNSTON: MY MILLENNIAL PARTNER
The eyes are said to be the windows to the soul. If that is the case, then Kelly Johnston’s eyes reveal a view that captures the essence of a beautiful soul.
Kelly is my millennial partner for The Bridging The Gap Campaign, which is aimed at tearing down stereotypes and building intergenerational bonds that unite women of all ages. There is no doubt that women are judged by their appearance, and that as we age, we are classified as old material, shelved with an expiration date.
This campaign is aimed at halting that trend, and creating a new one.
I was lucky enough to be able to partner with Kelly a few months ago, when I chose her from a list of millennial bloggers who would be participating in the campaign. I won’t lie to you, I went directly to her Instagram to see what she looked like, how many followers she had and the content of her IG feed. Of course I was completely struck by her beauty, but it was really the Canadian flag in her profile section that sealed the deal for me!
Living outside of Canada for over 2 decades has had a profound effect on my Canadian roots. Don’t get me wrong…I adore the United States, its complexities and troubles notwithstanding, it truly is the land of opportunity and freedom and I am grateful for the life that I have built here. But once a Canadian, always a Canadian, eh?
Enough about me…I want you to meet this sweet young woman, whose infectious personality was clearly evident from her first email. Kelly was born and raised in a small town outside of Toronto. She attended school there and I imagine was very popular! After graduating from High School, she did a stint in Finland, having followed a boyfriend there. Even though she was only 19 at the time, and her parents were a little less than enthusiastic about the move, she describes it as a fantastic experience. Once she moved back to Canada, she studied Dental Hygiene and worked as a dental hygienist for seven years. It was at the invitation of her father, who owns and runs a local private Hydro company in Ontario, that she decided to switch gears and learn the business, which she will ultimately take over. She claims to work in very unglamorous clothing and surroundings, donning mostly work boots. Somehow, I get the feeling that she looks pretty fabulous in those boots!
Her entry into the world of blogging on social media began a couple of years ago when she Instagrammed herself in a TRIANGL bathing suit. The Australian brand took notice of her and that, shall we say, was the beginning of something wonderful for Kelly. Her following began to soar and she was offered many partnerships. Kelly is very particular about brands with whom she will partner, and only features ones about which she is passionate. Skincare is one such area; it is something that is of utmost importance to her. Two years ago, she was diagnosed with skin cancer, something that changed her life completely. Like many of us, she spent time in the sun….(yes it gets warm enough to sun bathe in Canada), and never thought that she would fall victim to its harm, especially in her twenties. It was truly a wake up call for her. She is diligent about sunscreen application and partners with brands that promote that in their products.
Kelly’s mom plays a key role in her career, as she is her photographer. Once you visit Kelly’s Instagram page, @kellynicolejohnston, you will see that even though her subject, (Kelly), is a knock out, her mother has a fabulous eye and a great deal of talent!
Kelly’s outer exquisiteness is matched and may even be surpassed by her inner beauty. She is warm, compassionate, honest and wise. And all of this comes across in her Instagram posts. She speaks form the heart in an unencumbered way. If I was asked what I have gleaned from this relationship, it is her ability to live her life in a full and meaningful way, to put everything into perspective, to have dreams and goals but not to obsess over them. I was certainly not as relaxed about myself at Kelly’s age as she seems to be. I was always concerned with what others thought of me and would I ever achieve my full potential? At the age of 58, I still struggle with some of these issues, but my friendship with Kelly helped me to not judge myself so harshly and to be less self- critical. Kelly and I are mutual admirers, and are each other’s biggest cheerleaders. I am looking forward to forging a friendship with this special woman, so wise beyond her years. Those eyes are what initially drew me (and everyone) in, but the view that they expose is something that I am certainly glad I get to see.