Category: About Jen  //  View all recent posts


10.12.17

MJ Lifestyle Magazine in the making

Who the hell starts a magazine?! I ask my sister.
Annoyed she responds Ugh, a lot of people!!

After hearing her response Im instantly brought back to every moment where I wanted to give up because it was either too hard or I just didnt think I was good enough.

YOU ARE UNLIKE ANYONE ELSE.

YOU CAN DO ANYTHING YOU PUT YOUR MIND TO.

YOU ARE CAPABLE OF ANYTHING.


Since I was a young girls these mantras have been present in my mind. However as an adult, the stakes seem so much higher, and self doubt starts to get the best of me. Where did these mantras come from? Who gave me the confidence to know that I do have it in me? Who instilled this in my mind so much so that I still use it to get out of my head?

As a mother who has her own two little ones starting off school and team sports and learning about the world, Ive become familiar with my childhood once again. It somehow becomes so clear how significant being a positive voice in your childs mind is.

Every time I doubted myself, whether is be on the soccer field or a school presentation or boys teasing me, I always had my dad on the sidelines cheering me on and my mom there to hold my hand. As a kid you are so consumed with yourself and the things happening around you, you dont understand the sacrifices your parents have made for you and you certainly don't appreciate it. Mom and Dad, you have given me everything and my family everything, I'm eternally grateful for the positive influence you have on us all. Thank you.

As I embark on this new adventure - launching a Womens Cannabis Lifestyle Magazine - Im terrified. But I also know that I am capable and I am unique and I can do anything I put my mind to. And if that little awkward girl with NO rhythm can make the cheer leading squad then this strong educated woman sure as hell can create a magazine!

We've got our hearts pounding with our newest passion project, MJLifestyle Magazine, a platform that believes in Inspiring Change by Encouraging Women to Share their Stories and Lift the Stigma. Cultivating a Positive Image for Women & Cannabis, Promoting Community, Diversity, and Radical Inclusion for all Women through Unity, Collaboration, and Creativity.

Follow along in the journey with me, Ill be sharing our steps along the way and would love to have you by our side!

For ways to share your story and get involved visit: MJLifestyle.com
and follow us on Instagram @MJLifestyle

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06.10.17

Tell me about Cannabis

Since yesterday's 'Coming out of the Green Closet' post, I've been getting a lot of great feedback from you ladies out there and many of you have questions. So I figured I would do a little post on how Cannabis can be used aid with things like anxiety, insomnia, pain and cancer. Please know that I'm in no way a professional doctor or formally educated (although I did do a college paper on the legalization of Marijuana), but I am experienced and do know more about it than most people I know.

Let's start by getting your Cannabis Medical Card. Some states have already legalized it for recreation and medical, California has passed and we are expecting it all to be legal and open to the public in January of 2018. Until then, you will need a Medical Cannabis Card to purchase legally from dispensaries. So how do you get a card? You may seek advisement from your General Practitioner and they can refer you or you can visit HelloMD.com to apply & register from the ease and privacy of your own home. It costs between $70 - $100 annually and you will receive your card in the mail, I got mine the very next week.

A lot has changed and continues to change as we learn more and more about the benefits of this plant. There are 3 Types of Cannabis: Sativa, Indica & Hybrid (a combo of the two). I know Indica for being more of the sleepy, relaxed feeling, this is good for anxiety & insomnia, but not really for functioning all that much. If you don't fall asleep from Indica then you will get the munchies, consider yourself warned. Sativa is my best friend, but sometimes she strikes my anxiety a little so I can't use her too often. Sativa will give you a more uplifting & creative feeling. The Hybrid is a combo of Sativa & Indica in varying strengths. Personally I go for Sativa Dominant Hybrids with some CBD in there too. For more info on the differences, I found this article on Leafly.

CBD - this is big healing element in Cannabis and I've been getting lots of questions on it. CBD does not have the psychoactive effects that THC does, so you can dose without having that high feeling. This is the stuff that is fighting cancer and helping children who suffer from daily seizures and many other things.. And of course, it is more expensive to have pure CBD. I like to make sure there is some percentage of CBD in everything I take because it also helps with my anxiety.

Medicating with Cannabis doesn't mean you have to smoke it, there are many many ways to benefit from this plant. My husband made me ditch the bong many years ago, and because of the smell, I got booted to the garage or patio. I chose not to ingest or smoke while I was pregnant or nursing and within just a couple of years, things had advanced so much that I no longer had to stink up the garage or myself. Thanks to... The Vape Pen. I've tried a few different types - the ones that burn green bud are super smooth - check out PaxVapor.com - but it def still smells like weed. They have a new model that you can burn oil or bud in that I really can't wait to try out.

Cannabis Oils are very popular right now because they are discreet, convenient, and easier on the lungs. I personally, choose to smoke Premium Oil Cartridges that screw into a little battery pen. It's a smooth hit, very little odor and much cleaner on your lungs. Premium Cartridges typically have a metal mouth piece (opposed to plastic - think smoking heated up plastic? No!) and contain oil that is clean of any solvents or harsh chemicals. When medicating, remember that the process starts from a tiny seed, then as it grows you want to make sure they aren't using chemicals or pesticides to help maintain the plants. Then you want to make sure the extraction process is clean too, this is going into your body, so it is important to consider what other things can potentially be ingested along with it. My favorite Cartridges are 710 KingPen (I prefer the 1g because they are $50 for 1G compared to .5g for $35) not all companies offer this size, so when I can get it, I do! I also like GoldDrop, Jetty Extracts, and Absolute Xtracts.

You can also Dab with the oils, but dabbing is a little more maintenance and probably for the younger crowd? maybe? I have done it, it is smooth, but too many tools for this mama so I won't go into it.


Edibles - there are a ton of edible creations happening all around us - Chocolates, Butter, Cupcakes, Lozenges, you name it.. Again, it's important to understand the brands you are using and that their mission aligns with yours. Kiva Confections so far is killing it in the Cannabis Chocolate Biz. They make different flavored chocolate bars with varying strengths & little mints too! Each Chocolate Bar has 4 dose sections, if you have not tried an edible in a while, please only take a 1/4 of a dose and wait an hour or two before taking more. Kiva has these incredible little Terra Bites in two flavors: Espresso & Blueberry. I know a lot of people who either pop one or two an hour before bedtime or take in small doses through out the day. Each little ball is approx. 5mg of THC and are quite tasty! Obviously with Edibles, this is something to be taken very seriously if you have children. I definitely foresee and a rise in the need for a mini freezer that locks! Until then, you can purchase a lock box or prescription lock bag. I prefer to keep all my edibles in the outside freezer as they are easier to consume, stay fresh and taste better.


There are also some seriously killer looking products coming out for keeping your product safe. Check out these ridiculously cute bags from Vanderpop


I've had lots of questions about tinctures too, and these are really great for calming and soothing effects. They also tend to be richer in CBD. I've been using MoxieMeds - Modern Medicine for Women by Women - can I get a Hell Yes?! and they've got two different strengths to provide relief from cramps and pain, calm anxiety and emotional stress, reduce inflammation, and overall help to balance hormonal cycles. They have a 'Relief' of 1:1 CBD:THC and 'Recovery' of 4:1 CBD:THC. The 4:1 will be really low in THC, so less psychoactive. For even LESS Psychoactive, I have seen Tinctures of 20:1 CBD:THC (but I don't think Moxie offers that strength). Tinctures can be added in juice or tea, or for rapid relief place the liquid under your tongue and hold it for a minute or two before swallowing.

There are many other products, new ones coming out everyday! Even Topical Balms that can ease muscle pain and tension - check out what Flour Child Collective is doing in SF! My BF Shannon Paras shot their most recent shoot!

Lastly, where do I get it?? Once you have your card, you can visit and register with any local dispensary you would like. Once it became legal, I was introduced to Harborside Health Center and have been a loyal customer ever since. I believe they have two main dispensaries in Oakland and San Jose, everyone there is super friendly and knowledgeable on their products. Sometimes there is a wait in line, but that is what happens when you have reliable people educating and not rushing their patients. If you don't want to go there in person, guess what?? They have FREE DELIVERY!! Because this is so new, the laws are sort of changing all the time, in fact the tow I live in apparently outlawed Delivery come 2018. What exactly that means I don't know, but I will figure it out when it happens. Mail Service is still a Federal Institution and Cannabis is not prohibited in the mail, so don't mail it to anyone, ever. Additionally, there is an app called WeedMaps that will direct you to all the Dispensaries near you.

Please feel free to ask me any questions you have and thank you so much for supporting me on this platform. I know a lot of you cannot be as vocal because of your professions or whatever the case may be, just know that I will be here to fight for you, I will advocate for you, for all of us. Cheers!
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06.06.17

I am awesome

I am awesome. Those were the first 3 words that came out of my mouth when a new friend wanted to interview me. I think he was taken back a little; his reaction seemed a little off and almost 10 years later, he still tells this story. What could it have been? Was it too Egotistical? Too Confident? Too True? These thoughts would often race my mind as I would refer back to other family members and close friends joking that I 'have a big head' - it was even in several of the toasts at my wedding. I love a good laugh and it is all in good fun, but I began to question myself and often times put myself down so that the notion of being too confident would never cross anyone's mind. My thoughts began to break me down and I began to hide some of the real me for fear that somebody would take it the wrong way and think negatively of me. Self Criticism is so unhealthy for the soul. We all should feel free to share our beauty, our kindness, our awesome with the world.

When I said I was awesome, I meant it, but maybe it wasn't heard the way I intended it. I believe everyone should love themselves and if you don't, why the hell not? I'm a good person, and if you've met me for more than a minute, I wouldn't have to explain why. Just put it this way, it has nothing to do with my art or my work and everything to do with being me. Of course I have flaws, just like you, but I don't need to point those out, I just work on them everyday. Even at 40 years old make bad decisions. Often. And I have to take responsibility for them when I'm around my little ones to show them first hand that we are all flawed.

A decade ago, my partner Maria Chang and I joined forces and pioneered the 'Couture Boudoir' - a day of glamour and passion with an award winning hair & makeup artist and equally acclaimed photographer. At the time, Photographers were not yet offering Styled Shoots and Boudoir definitely felt like taboo no matter how beautiful we made it. It was amazing, but I was so afraid of what people would think that I didn't blog about it or post it on social media, and I never admitted what I did when I first met someone. Fuck what a shame.. But I think if I didn't feel this way then, I couldn't possibly feel the freedom that I do now. When moving to Kansas I was worried I would be kicked out for the work I did. While I didn't do much local work during our stay (I traveled home for shoots often) I was greeted with some of the kindest people on the planet and never once felt judged. Although there was one BIG thing I still didn't share with most..

My husband says he knew right away, but maybe it was because of the guy I was dating.. I've always been incredibly responsible and driven, pretty much every job I've ever had, I've taken the place over. I've got my shit together, but for most of my adult life I've kept a secret for fear of not being taken seriously, or being labeled a criminal or druggie or letting my parents down. I've got a conservative but understanding husband and I can count on one hand the close friends that will join me, but for every other aspect of my life, I've hid it. I've felt shame. I've always been different than the other girls, usually labeled the crazy one who talks about sex, shoots naked chicks and smokes pot. And I am crazy, but in a wholehearted, antagonistic way. For me, Cannabis calms my mind and arouses my creativity. The legalization of Cannabis has opened the doors to a brand new resource that can not only produce medicines, but paper and goods and art and enjoyable edibles :)

Maria and I have embarked on a new adventure photographing & marketing for Cannabis Lifestyle Brands & Products. Our mission is to kill the stigma that's associated with Cannabis and curate a Positive Image of Women & Cannabis. We want to promote self-love and empowerment and show that Cannabis isn't just about 'Bongs & Thongs' for women. Cannabis has no face. We are lovers, mothers, healers, professionals, sisters, artists... and some of us are fighting for our lives.

A couple of weeks ago, Maria & I were asked if "we even smoked weed?!" What does that mean? Is she falling for the same stereotypes that others do? Were we too put together or too successful to be stoners? I don't really know. Maybe I looked too square. I chose not to answer. I don't have to prove my weedness to anyone. But what I do have to prove is that Cannabis is not a bad thing, it has healed many many people, it's far safer than alcohol or prescription drugs and it is a sustainable product - it can make so many things! The legalization of Cannabis will change our world!

So where am I going with all of this? I'm feeling pretty alive right now and I'd like to share it with you however I can. Ladies, let's stop beating ourselves up and let's practice lifting one another up instead. It's pretty obvious that it is up to us to start changing this world. We are the ones raising our youth, educating them. It is our job to be the constant figure in their lives, to advocate for them. To advocate for us.. Stop competing with each other. If you see a girl working her confidence give her a hell yeah! And please.. the judging. this is so hard I know first hand, but let's practice opening our hearts and our minds to something that may be different that what we already know. I believe we have so much to learn from other people, share yourself with them and be loved.


For more up to date info on our new Cannabis Projects Follow our Instagram @MJLifestyle

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12.29.16

Dont give up your day dream

I'm sitting here still sweaty from my U-Jam class even though I already showered and now my clothes are totally sticking to me. I guess it's nothing a hairdryer, blanket and the heater wont fix :) It reminded me though of how amped I am for 2017 and just overall grateful to be right her, right now. We've got just about everything moved in to our new house here in CA; I've begun decorating in my mind, the kids school and daycare are taken care of and I've finally got my core workouts scheduled. All I feel right now is a sense of relief with excitement running through my veins. It feels good, real good.

I'm not sure if I have told you about U-Jam before, but it is an incredible dance fitness program with sick dance beats from all over the world. I'm crazy addicted to the feeling I have when I'm in my groove and couldn't be more excited to be back under the instruction of my main girl Jollene. A couple of years ago I challenged myself to become an instructor, I did it and am stoked that I did, but I think from here on out, I will leave the instructing to the real pros! Anyway, Jollene always has positive vibes she sends out to her class and today, as our last class together for 2017, she encouraged us to never stop giving up on our dreams. Keep them realistic, but never stop dreaming... this marinated in my head a little. What are my dreams and aren't I already living 'the dream' with a loving family and career doing something I love? Wouldn't it be selfish of me to really want anything more? But she said 'Don't stop' and I can't stop, there is still so much that I want to achieve. And simply because I love what I do, doesn't mean every part of it is actual physical work. And what about the pressure us artists hold on us? Yes, we were given a talent, but what a burden it is constantly trying to be better than your last creation? How heavy is the pressure when your love, your passion, your art, is what pays your bills. As artists so much of what we do is a reflection of our current mood or state of mind. We incorporate our lives into our creative vision, we use pieces we've picked up along the way to create what we create. Art, it's an ever-evolving and no matter how much of it consumes us, it's up to us to continue evolving too.. to keep dreaming and reaching and turning those dreams into a reality.

I do still have a lot of dreams for myself and for my career, often those two things are entwined, but not always. And I don't want to stop, I can't stop. I hope this little tidbit might inspire you too, to never stop dreaming and going after your dream, whatever that may be. Maybe you've lost a little part of yourself along the way as life often takes over and we tend to go straight into auto-pilot. Let's take a few moments to breathe it all in, clear all the clutter and find that little piece of ourselves we've been missing. We are super excited about things to come in 2017 and welcome you into our plans! I can't wait to create more and I can't wait to see what you bring into 2017!

Manifest that shit!!

xx,Jen
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12.12.16

What are you so afraid of?

I've been home about 3 weeks now and the recent conversations with people I havent' seen in a while have got me thinking.. When I left for Kansas, I was very thin with anxiety, I enjoyed fitting into clothes better, but it got to a point where I couldn't even find jeans that didn't sag in my booty and my neck skin started to sag because I had nothing on me and quite honestly, my head was not in the right space. Fast forward a year a half of being away, some ovary issues, a cranky hip, new meds and well, to say the least I've gained a few of those lbs back. My girlfriend Shannon has been nudging me to get back into my U-Jam class because our instructor Jollene's energy is something I just can't get enough of. I was able to go to a few classes in KC, but the classes were smaller and darker so we couldn't see too much of ourselves in the reflection staring back at us. Not the case in Jollene's class, this ray of sunshine has a bright, positive space to dance away anything on your mind. I kept catching glimpses of myself with disgust 'Ugh, why did I wear this tank top? All I could look at was my flabby, white, lumpy arms staring back in the mirror. I found that every time I just ignored the chick in the mirror, the sexier I felt dancing to the music. It suddenly hit me why so many women don't 'have the guts' to do a photo shoot that is all about them.

I know that I am not happy with the way I look right now and that I don't really care to see anymore of myself than I already do. But nobody else sees the things we hate in ourselves, the things we fixate on and hold against ourselves. Nobody cares about those things, all they want to see is your smiling face dancing to the beat of your own drum.

What if I could show you how beautiful you are? What if we could give you an extraordinary day of beauty, fashion and empowerment? Leave you with a sense of accomplishment, bravery and confidence. Don't you think you deserve this? And hasn't it crossed your mind 'I wonder how I would look doing one of these?'. Aren't you curious? Do you think you can go your whole life not knowing how it feels or how freaking good you might photograph? Do you want to go through your whole life not pushing yourself to take that jump into the uncomfortable. And don't think you need a lover to have yourself photographed. This is a gift for you, this is part of your life story. A little piece of yourself that you can share or hold tightly onto. Our photoshoots can be anything you want, the limits are endless, just imagine as if someone was writing a magazine article about you. This is about who you are when you close your eyes, it's about fantasy and you can be whomever you want to be.

We really don't even know what the call this anymore, because it isn't all boudoir, it's got a bit of lifestyle and fashion mixed in there too. Our production-style shoots are story-boarded, styled and shot like an editorial feature, complete with hair & makeup styling by industry leader, PMA. Collectively, our team will curate a moodboard, collaborate on wardrobe, location scout, and design an incredible photo shoot with magazine worthy photographs show for it. This JENNIFER SKOG EXPERIENCE celebrates the life you created and will leave you feeling beautiful, empowered and craving more!

So the other day, I was chatting with a friend on the phone and I shared that I had been considering doing something with my career for 2 years now. Flabbergasted he said "What are you so afraid of?!!" I was speechless. He's absolutely right, what am I so afraid of? All of could think of is the young girl that was encouraged never to be afraid to pursue your dreams. If anyone can do it, I can. And that is absolutely what I hope you take from this message.

All shoots booked between January and April will receive a special one of a kind gift from yours truly.

xo,
Jen

See our latest work on our new Instagram @SKOGgoneROGUE I can't wait to work on our next project together!




fashion photography, portraits, boudoir photography, intimate photography,self love
soulful portraits, boudoir photographer, jennifer skog, vogue, intimate portrait, mood
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