Just thought maybe you’d like to see part of the presentation we did today at the Boys N Girls Club, Smart Girls Luncheon. Yup, Sam and I were the Brilliant Women speakers. It was so AMAZING. The girls were so SPECTACULAR

Here’s my opening…well, my notes…you can ramble through…
PS they are just little notes we read from know…lots of typos.

I’m still wondering why I was asked to talk. My guess is that Heather thinks I’ve done great things by building a beautiful company, starting an orphanage and being generous and kind.

Truth is, I’ve only done what I know how to do. I’m not anything spectacular.

I just wake up every morning, try to gather myself so I can make others smile even if I’m not smiling inside,
then I go about my day trying to make others happy cuz that is the one thing that creates a spark in my heart.

For me to me standing here today is probably close to one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. So When I was asked to speak I said no. I said no way.

I got home thought about it for a couple weeks. I had recently just left my job at Matilda Jane Clothing. A company I founded all based upon a guy telling me I would never amount to anything.

For the past 7 years to many people that’s all I’ve been is “Matilda Jane”. I had lost my identity.

I was time to become Denise DeMarchis again.

I also knew I would never stand here alone.

There’s a girl named Sam McDonald that is muse, inspiration and side kick. Sam helps me to stand up here a little taller, a little braver and a lot more true to myself.

When you look at us you may see us as mother and daughter, coworkers, or a young girl and a very old lady. But what you do not see and I hope that you will feel by the end of this talk is the love we have for each other.

I was looking for extra help to pack orders. Sam walked in wearing jeans, a simple white t-shirt, her eyes sparkled and she rolled in like a ball of sunshine.

And this girl Sam is exactly what I needed in my life.
Little did I know I’m exactly what Sam needed in her life.

There’s a song, that goes ….

“When all of your flaws and all of my flaws
Are laid out one by one
A wonderful part of the mess that we made
We pick ourselves undone”

And it was so true my whole life I was embarrassed of my flaws. I was constantly looking at others comparing myself. Comparing myself to my friends to my family to you and to Sam. I was never smart enough, skinny enough, funny enough… My teachers thought I was never good enough to be in art class . I struggled for so long that I was never to complete package, the amazing package that so many of my friends were.

The package that Sam was when she walked through the door that day.

As I got to know Sam I saw her wearing her flaws upon her sleeve. She showed me it was okay to be me.
Sam showed me that my crazy little flaws made me who I was. These flaws defined me.

I am Denise DeMarchis and this is Sam McDonald.

And of course Sam’s BEAUTIFUL notes….
Memories are like little lasting impressions you make every single day of your life. I have a thousand that I’m proud of and probably a little more than I’d like to admit that I want everyone to forget. One of my fondest memories is when I started at Matilda Jane. I walked in for the first day of work and was trained by Chris to make every single package feel incredibly special. From the tissue it was wrapped in, to the way the sticker was placed on the brown paper bundle, it had to have heart and all of that taught me that the little things matter just as much is the the order itself. I think that’s partially, actually I think that’s TOTALLY why Denise was so successful with Matilda Jane. She never underestimated the little things. The power of the smallest detail can change the way you feel, or in Denise’s case, change the world.

Relationships have always been something I’ve struggled with for a long time. Whether I was hanging out with my best friend enough or if I spent too much time with my boyfriend or if I ever saw my family. Have I spent any time with them lately? Am I a horrible daughter for being away so much? These are things that I’ve always thought about, constantly worried about and never felt like I was doing correct. I have a best friend of 15 years, I have Denise and so many others who loves me and value my relationship but I just worry so much that I don’t give enough of myself to the people who give of themselves to me.

It’s funny to talk about talent when I stand up here next to my mentor, one of my dearest, bestest friends who just happens to be an absolute creative genius. So yeah I’ve felt like I wasn’t talented enough a lot in the past, but how is that this person that I hold on the highest of pedestals (sorry Denise) sees something so valuable in me? I think that’s talent. I think talent is what you have inherently in you that with the help of someone else you can really showcase it and share it with others.

In the video you saw that I slid my way through high school. I wasn’t saying that to be cool because I don’t think it’s cool. I was just too embarrassed and too nervous to be the best at anything. To be good at sports or to try to be athletic was a chance to let someone on the team down. Being smart in class gave me a chance of failing. It’s frightening to be good at something. Because the moment you are, that’s when you start comparing yourself to others. So I took a different route. I took the path of being nice and goofy. I was approachable and shared my silly self with everyone around me. It wasn’t the typical way of succeeding in high school, but it is the way that’s made me who I am today. And I dont think I’d change that for anything.

If you would’ve asked Denise and I a year ago if we liked Pinterest we would’ve said no we don’t use it, we don’t go on it, it’s just kind of scary and makes us feel like “well dang we thought we were doing a good job but look at that”

Being authentic isn’t easy these days. Everyone’s talented or cool in their own way, and you see it on the Internet, if you don’t see it in real life. But how do you find your own way? You’re own way to prove yourself. To prove that you have something to bring to the table. Well, Denise has taught me to listen to my gut and my heart, which have more than once been the same thing. And we all know your conscious always knows best. So my thoughts are…be silly, be outgoing, or be quiet and listen or be the humorous one that everyone is inevitably drawn to, but no matter what just be yourself and never compare who you are to someone else. We’re all just different and that’s how we were made. It’s what us unique and special. And I think that’s pretty darn cool in itself.

Ha ya I just Check my Instagram right before I got on stage 🙂


What a great big blessing to so many you, Denise DeMarchis, and Sam McDonald are!


beautiful women with beautiful souls doing beautiful things felt daily by so many…

Bridgette Lott

LoVe it!!

Erica S

In tears. I love your hearts. The line about learning to give your entire life is what choked me up the most. I feel like such an inadequate mom most days. The house is a mess. I rarely pull things off the way I envision them in my head. I’m getting older and wider (no typo) and don’t look like myself when I look in the mirror, but the one thing I can say is that I know my kids learn to give. It’s an example I try to set every day. If they carry that with them through life this journey will all be worth it. Thank you for reminding me of that.



Theresa Lakin

Thank you for the work you are doing. I recently found out about this organization and I am in awe.

Lauren Marcu

This nearly brought me to tears. What a beautiful difference you are making. Thank you so much for all you do.

Melissa T

Blessed to know about such a wonderful team!

Ashley E

I love this! You don’t have to be “special” to do something great. We all become special by the work and love that we put into life. God bless!


Love this story… I feel blessed to of found Denise and her team ~! 🙂

Sandra K

What beautiful words from two beautiful ladies. Thank you for sharing your not with us!

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