Apr 24, 2014

Retail Therapy

I am pretty good at suppressing my emotions when I am stressed out. Maybe that's because I take it out on my wallet and engage in retail therapy when I am stressed out. It gives me a sense of control in an unpredictable world. 

But I'd go broke if I really splurged whenever I was stressed. So this week I took it out on Target, which was perfect because they have some really cute Spring/Summer pieces right now. Here's what is alleviating my stress:
tiered maxi dress

striped hoodie

white skinny jeans

Mint Sandals

Pink Necklace

I held off on buying these two items, but I think that they will be mine very shortly:

rope mirror

Anchor Bookends

Does retail therapy work for you? And if so, which store is your therapist?

Linking up with Treat Yo' Self Thursdays

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Apr 23, 2014

The Thing About Blogging

Blogging. To say it is a strange hobby is an understatement. Every year, millions of blogs are started, and if you asked a blogger if you should start one too, they'd probably say something like Oh my god yessss it's the best thing everrr. But I think that there are a lot of things about blogging that people don't really discuss that I'll talk about:

It really is a narcissistic pursuit. And that's perfectly fine, own it! But let's not kid anyone. A blog is all about me, me, and look at me!

It takes a lot more time than it looks. I know that for me, posts on average take at least an hour, to create: there's working out ideas, the writing, editing, editing photos. And that's just once I open the page.

Which leads to another thing: planning. Posts, at least for me, are not always as spontaneous as they may seem. I create an editorial calendar so that I know what I will be writing about (more or less) throughout the week. Recipe posts, for instance, take some brainstorming, shopping for ingredients, preparation, and photography. That means that in addition to being concerned with a current post, you also have to be planning ahead and thinking about what you'll be posting next week.

And when you don't plan ahead, you might have irrational anxiety about what to post. Because blogging also makes you worry about the strangest things. The world will keep spinning if you don't have a new blog post every day, and yet, the anxiety about tomorrow's post is real.

And that isn't the only thing you will be irrational about. Once page views begin increasing, you might become obsessed with them. Page numbers low one day? I know that it sours my mood. Page views hit an all time high? Holy crap this is the best day ever! Why I care about how many people look at my blog on a given day is beyond me, but blogging will likely make you develop these OCD tendencies.

You might find yourself taking a lot of pictures of yourself. And if we're being real, let's admit that it's a little bit obnoxious. I'm not going to stop any time soon, and I think that they help blog posts (see above about page views), but taking pictures of yourself so often can be a bit ridiculous, and hard to explain to your friends who are not bloggers.

You probably won't make lots of money from your blog. Some people make some decent money, but few do it in a way that manages to maintain the integrity of their blog. Calm your tits; I'm not saying that if you monetize your blog it sucks, but I will say that the blogs that I think suck the most are ones where every post is let me introduce you to my new BFF sponsor or this post is brought to you by Tampax or Depends-- do you really want to be that person shilling Depends? If you're starting a blog to earn money, then by all means, make that money. But know that the money won't come immediately.

You have to remember that you have an audience, and that audience is entitled to an opinion. If you're putting something out there to the public, that public has every right to judge you or laugh at you. It may suck, but it's the truth. It may be something you have to deal with as a blogger.

Of course, there are all sorts of wonderful things about it: the people you "meet" and then those that you really meet, the ability to connect with others through your writing, and the creative challenge, just to name a few. It takes a lot of dedication, preparation, and guts, but in the end, I'd say that it's worth it (even if it makes you a bit crazy at times).

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Apr 22, 2014

Saving the Earth, One Plate at a Time

Happy Earth Day everybody! 

My life goal is to see as much of the Earth as I can. What can I say; I think our planet is really, really neat. And the older I get, the more I realize how important it is to be mindful of our actions and choices. I want my future children and grandchildren to get to enjoy it as much as I do. 

C and I try our best to make Earth-friendly choices: we recycle, we have an electric car (my Mini is obviously gas powered, but gets very good mileage), and our house is solar powered. But I've long felt a twinge of guilt knowing that I have been avoiding the one thing that could probably make the most positive impact on the environment: giving up meat. 

We often think that it's gas-guzzling SUVs that are the biggest enemy, and while they certainly aren't doing any good, it's estimated that one-fifth of man-made carbon emissions are generated by the meat industry.

What's even more frightening is considering how quickly our planet's population is growing. This month's National Geographic has a fascinating article about how our current diets and agricultural products are just unsustainable. 

The problem is, I love meat. I wish I could be a vegetarian, but....I just.... I just love a good steak.

But I can commit to going meat-free one day a week. You may have heard of the Meatless Monday movement-- if you haven't, it's just like it sounds: not eating meat on Mondays.

That is definitely something that I can do. Now imagine if thousands of people cut back on meat consumption. What if hundreds of thousands did?

It's something that is so easy to commit to, and at the same time, so effective. So who's with me on pledging to go meatless every Monday?

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