After Dana’s Peddicord’s daughter, Grace, was born, Dana felt a need to always be connected to Grace, whether it is when she is living in her home, off at college or beyond.
“I often look at Grace and I can’t believe God gave her to me,” Dana says.
“I want to always feel connected to her, even when I’m not on this earth, and I realized the only way to give me that security was to develop a better relationship with God.”
Dana believes that faith is very personal. Navigating being a new mom, a small business owner, a wife, a friend and many other roles challenged Dana to find more resources to manage day to day stresses. At the recommendation of several friends, she started reading “Jesus Calling,” a daily devotional.
“My friends said that Jesus was literally calling me, just like the book’s title,” Dana says. “Reading ‘Jesus Calling’ daily has helped me set intentions for my days, it has helped me find a deeper faith, and to be less fearful of ever being without my girl because of the love we share.”
As co-owner of Pink Lou Lou Design Studio, a hair and makeup studio that offers styling for any occasion, Dana, like many moms, struggles with making time for everything from her small business to raising Grace.
“There’s something about mom guilt that makes my heart hurt when I have to schedule things away from Grace when we could spend that time together, especially during my busy season,” says Dana. “I try really hard to balance my time between being a mom and a business owner, but being my own boss sometimes blurs the lines between all of these areas. My business partner, Allison Jenks, and I have loved building our business over these last six years and it’s incredible to get to do something you love with your friend.”
Along with being a small business owner, Dana is the treasurer of the board for the Miss Kentucky Scholarship Program.
“Serving on the board is almost another full-time job, but I love it,” Dana says. “I believe in what it brings to the women of Kentucky, who participate in the program, as well as to the children in Kentucky who get to spend time with whomever wins Miss Kentucky each year.”
Since becoming a mom, Dana says that health and fitness have become a bigger priority and because she wants to raise Grace to have a healthy body image.
“Exercising gives me time to myself, helps me to feel fit and energized, and gives me a great community of people I enjoy spending time with,” she says. “Health and fitness in general has become even more important to me since becoming a mom to a little girl. I want Grace to see a strong role model who isn’t concerned with a diet or a pant size, but more so lives a healthy lifestyle overall.”
While growing up, Dana says her mom always made reading a priority. Dana credits her mom for being not only being the person who taught her to love to read, but the one who taught Dana everything she knows about loving another person. Dana always loved the book “The Giving Tree” by Shel Silverstein, so it was only fitting that her mom gifted her this book when she became a mom.
“If you are familiar with this book, you know that the tree gives and gives to a little boy that the tree loves until there is nothing more for the boy to take” Dana says. “The tree is left bare—no apples, leaves, or branches—the trunk is gone and all that remains is the stump. Yet the tree is still able to give something to the boy, whom is now an old man and he needs to rest. A stump makes a perfect seat. The note my mom inscribed in the book reads ‘Even when it seems there is nothing left, there is always something that remains for those we love.’ ”
Dana and her husband, Michael, agree that Grace motivates them every day be better people. As parents, Dana and Michael want to protect Grace’s heart, but they know they need to find that balance between what will keep her safe, while also letting her be the light of joy they hope she becomes as an adult.
“I think that’s what kids do for any of us,” Dana says. “You try to teach them to be the good you hope to see in the world. In turn, you have to try to show them what is good, what is right, what is kind. If Grace ends up being a kind person, I will feel like I accomplished what I wanted in being her mom.”