Monday, October 5, 2015

Rainy Day Uniform

For a pretty exciting day of dental and doctor appointments back in my hometown, I threw on a black sweatshirt, baseball cap and these dark green booties. It's officially hat season for me, which means less work taming my mane and a variety of ways to change up an outfit with just one hat choice.
It was a quick trip home, but I managed to grab a late lunch with my mom while simultaneously working. I had THREE appointments..It's hard when I love my gyno, dentist and dental surgeon back home, but sucks when I make one single trip to knock out all the appointments. My least favorite day of the year.
[Le Beau Sweatshirt from Shopbop, Cyra Catelyn bootie c/o Hushpuppies, jeans by J Brand, bag by Proenza Schouler, hat from Lululemon]

Friday, October 2, 2015

5 tips to balance work + blog without wanting to punch someone, cry or perform other acts of meltdown

If you burn the candle at both ends, balancing blogging and working full-time, you probably experience the frustration, stress and self-doubt that bubbles up. Here are five tips that help keep me on track and keep me sane.
Create an editorial calendar. As a Type A personality, nothing puts me at ease more than being in complete control. I typically post three days a week and I just use Microsoft Word to plan out my monthly editorial calendar. Nothing fancy. Excel probably works better, but I use this doc to write out ideas and track partnerships. I may only plan a week or two out, but being able to see the big picture for the next month, especially if I have planned campaigns can help me plan days to photograph, publish posts and promote. Oh, and using the cross-through button let's me electronically cross things off my list.
Just say no. One of the hardest things about balancing essentially two jobs is making time for yourself. I stress myself out by saying yes to too many things and before I know, I have obligations seven nights a week, two weeks straight. My new goal is to leave at least TWO evenings after work free of any obligation. This gives me time to work out, spend more time with my dog and get caught up on school stuff. I really just want to sit on my couch and watch On-Demand and unwind while eating cheese. This is what makes me feel re-energized. What about you?
Don't forget the ones you love. It's easy for me to neglect the people I love in my life like Kyle, my grandparents or my mom. I justify in my head why I don't have time to look up from my computer and have a conversation with Kyle or why it's okay to put off calling my grandma for another week. It's shitty. The good thing is that if you recognize this and become self aware, that's a huge step. Set rules for yourself like leave the iPhone at home during dates or take a minute to fully be present in a conversation with friends. This is a constant struggle for me, but I know when I do this, it's appreciated and something we should all try to do. Sometimes this boils down to time management or work anxiety and so you have to plan your posts and social out and take time to yourself to not check work email.
Find or build a network. No one quite gets the balancing act of blogging and work full-time unless they do it too. Make friends online or in person or both to share frustrations, get advice and hold each other accountable. Sam of Samantha Elizabeth is my girl to vent to and make sure I’m doing what I said I told her I’d do. Our goal is to meet often in person and review some of our goals and actually make time to do it. It reinvigorates you to talk about your goals and projects out loud to someone who gets it and cares. I've also going to make it a quarterly goal to go out of my way to build friendships with new bloggers. I get comfortable with my current group of friends, bloggers or non-bloggers. Making new friends is exciting and why I loved blogging in the first place. What's also great about building this network is the ability to collaborate together, do guest posts for each other and support one another. These networks and friendships have lifted me out of dark places and given me motivation to be creative and keep at it.
Define success. It's easier to stay on track when you know why you're doing what you're doing. Why are you blogging? Are you blogging on the topics most interesting to you? Is there a way for your blog to help advance your career? Is your goal to blog full-time? I've realized for myself that my blog has been the gateway to many connections and job offers. I work in public relations so a personal brand along with writing and photography have given me an edge in the job market. It also helps me do things I don't get to do at work. I don't get to photograph style, fashion or food. But I have to remind myself that it's okay if I don't have time to post because I just don't have to. That's the beauty of blogging for fun. Sure, I make supplementary income, but I feel more in control with not needing any and every job I receive. Each year, you should reevaluate your priorities, set 2-3 measurable goals and determine if you're putting time where you should be and if what you're doing with your blog is what you want. Blogging can be whatever you want it to be.

Questions? You can always email me at Happy to help!
Rings by Katie Dean Jewelry, plaid shirt c/o Aeropostale (last year), iPhone case + headphones c/o Ankit

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

All the things

Well it's starting to look and feel a lot like fall. I love it. For a day trip to Grand Rapids, I dressed in my most comfortable layers and headed out to drink good coffee and check out Art Prize with my friend Ashley. I bought myself this Proenza Schouler bag (HALF OFF NO LIE) a couple weeks ago too and it's slowly becoming attached to my body.
We rushed to get to Le Bon Macaron where we immediately became obsessed with the pumpkin flavor and the iced vanilla latte. We indulged in more coffee at Rowster and then checked out a couple Art Prize venues before walking through the downtown market. What a lovely day.
[Rodarte tee from Shopbop, leather jacket from Zara, jeans by BDG (loving these cropped jeans), bag by Proenza Schouler, Rayban aviators c/o Shade Station, rings by Katie Dean Jewelry]
Photos by Ashley of Lavender Lists

Monday, September 28, 2015


I don't often to choose to dress up, but every couple months, I have a legitimate reason to switch out the jeans, show off my unshaven legs and whirl around in a dress. Last week, I headed out to an awards event and styled this dress with the capelet with hairy legs and black heels. I just love how playful the dress is and wore it again for dinner with my friend Liz last weekend. I later regret the pink heels and wish I would've stuck with the black heels as I wore earlier in the week. You live and learn.
[dress from West and Lou, BB Dakota Bristol Capelet c/o Mixology, pink heels c/o Lulu*s, rings by Katie Dean Jewelry]
Photos by Liz Westerhof

Friday, September 25, 2015

Northwest Photo Diary

First time in Seattle and at the market!
Giant bouquets of flowers on the cheap. So cool.
Meat and Bread: delicious.
Hotel views.
Always a blast to travel with my friend Melissa who loves to eat too many donuts, walk and explore and shop with me!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Layers for Pacific Northwest

For a lengthy flight last week, I layered up and tossed on this oversized scarf to double as a blanket since 1. it's actually chilly out and I love it 2. I freeze my ass off on my planes. I've been remixing this top, jacket and scarf, all versatile pieces I'm planning to get a lot of wear out of this fall. What's your go-to piece this season?
[jacket c/o Lulu*s, jeans c/o Madewell, striped tee from West & Lou (similar striped tees), bag by Rebecca Minkoff, scarf from Retail Therapy, rings by Katie Dean Jewelry, boots by Steven Alan (similar black wedge booties)]
Photos by Ashley of Lavender Lists