Thursday, October 3, 2013

Keep Reading

I am starting off with a very real photo of what I am a) wearing (Ben's comfy clothes), b) doing (watching Say Yes to the Dress and organizing my clothes), and c) drinking (Cotes du Rhone)... because I am about to launch into a real post about this blog.

I've hit a bit of a blog rut. I felt like I had great outfits and great shoots in fun locations going on when we first moved, and then the weather changed and my blog now has seasonal affective disorder. The rain doesn't make for great light, or great photo-shoots in interesting spots, and it's downright cold. I finally got a tripod, but I'm terrible at taking photos with it (I can't ever seem to get my whole head in view) and my main squeeze photographer has been studying dead bodies non-stop. I also don't have as much discretionary money now that Ben's in school and we have increased bills here in Portland. The shopping has slowed a bit and I'm feeling blah about everything. I just want riding boots and a J. Crew blazer damnit!

I was also perusing GOMI today - I know, it's a website that only causes negativity, but sometimes it helps keep me grounded - and it made me think about how my blog comes across to you. If things feel tired to me, there's a good chance that you're feeling tired of what I'm posting and if I'm uninspired, well, you know the drill. So I am working on coming up with an editorial calendar that includes more interesting content for you, not just repeat cold-weather outfits that aren't very creative at all. I'm thinking I'd like to add back in remixed item posts, more shopping wishlists and great sales, some local activities, some added easy DIYs for those of us that love the holidays but are crap at DIY, and more simple and quick cooking/baking.

Along with those new, more intentional posts, I think it's worth discussing sponsored posts and campaigns. GOMI loves to spend time hating bloggers for getting things for free or writing sponsored content, and honestly I get it. Sometimes I enjoy reading sponsored content, sometimes when it entirely doesn't fit the blog, I really don't. But I also love getting the opportunity to try a product, review a service, or participate in a shopping/cooking/craft challenge that is paid. It's really fun. How often do you get paid to have a lot of fun? I know I don't ever get that opportunity outside of the blog and company picnics.

I have been trying to be conscientious about blog content since I started blogging and I've made a few mishaps. I can definitely feel it when I post about something that just doesn't fit with my blog. It's just not worth it to compromise my readership or my love of the blog for those opportunities, payment or no. So I try to avoid them (like writing about Wendy's chicken sandwiches or Kias or Lunchables or tampons). But I have also been pursuing these other opportunities (like a post about Revlon makeup, or shopping at Sears, or drinking tea) because I am interested in this blog being my second job. Being compensated for blogging is a dream come true. It brings out my entrepreneurial side, my creative side, my happiest side. And it allows me to pay my bills. I think it's important to point that out. I really would love to pay more than the minimum on my student loans. Or have a vet bill nest egg (darn cat). Or contribute to my retirement. Or replace old, tired furniture. Or afford Comcast when they raise their rates. And my 8-5 p.m. job just doesn't allow me to do all of those things. 

Blogging has been a gift. It is a lot of hard work and I spend a lot of time on it, but it has allowed a bunch of things to happen - like let me reinvest $ in advertising on other blogs, host great giveaways, respark my creative side, and get me back into photography. And it's let my savings grow through sponsored content. So thanks for being readers and sticking around through some good, some bad decisions. I hope you'll keep reading and enjoying and I hope to keep trying my best to make decisions that fit this blog and are of interest to you.

Happy Friday!


  1. I love your blog! I'm looking forward to seeing what you come up with next <3

  2. Your blog is great, I look forward to reading it daily. But, I totally know what you mean and sometimes feel that way too. It'll be good for you to put together an editorial calendar, that will definitely help you.

    xo, Nina

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  4. I really enjoyed reading this post and that pic of you "being real" is still beautiful!

  5. As far as sponsored posts go, I see nothing wrong with them (as long as it's not a daily thing because that can alienate readers).

    Looking forward to seeing the new changes you're making!

    The Tiny Heart
    Scarf Giveaway!

  6. I have to say I am so happy I found your blog and love that you did this post. I think we all get to a point where we feel in a bit of a rut and that is completely understandable. I see both sides of the sponsored posts, I do them here and there but always make sure it is something I actually love and am willing to support. I can't stand when I see a blogger doing a sponsored post every single day pushing stuff I know that they would normally never purchase or support. I also do see though that you have to make money somehow and know it's not cheap and very time consuming to run a blog, especially alongside a day job. I just have to tell you again I love you honestly and this post seriously helped me see the real you which I don't get that feeling with many!

    xx Cara

  7. i've been in blogging ruts too and also get worried about doing too much sponsored stuff. but blogging really is a lot of work so i don't want to feel bad about getting (a tiny bit of) compensation when i do. keep doing what makes you happy on the blog and it will work out :)
    -- jackie @ jade and oak

  8. I think you have a good perspective on things and I hope your upcoming changes inspire you to keep your blog up. I personally don't mind sponsored content IF, and that's a big thing, IF it fits with the bloggers tastes and lifestyle. I get that blogging takes a lot of time and effort and I can't begrudge people for wanting to be compensated, I just wish more bloggers would use a little discretion when saying yes to sponsors AND space them out. I was so bummed a couple months ago when one of my favourite bloggers went pro and had 2 weeks strait of sponsored posts. That was too much.

    plus I'm always glad to be introduced to a new company or product I didn't know about.


  9. I love that this is such an honest post. Blogging needs to be fun for you, because if not it will come across in your posts! It's better for you to post content you are passionate about than just stuff you are ho-hum about. You'll get your inspiration back :)

  10. I just found your blog, but this post really hit me. Don't feel bad about hitting a blog funk, we've all done that. What I like is that you're thinking about covering a wide range of topics in the future. I feel that's so important. It's hard just doing fashion or beauty posts. It's costly too. I try to mix up topics. I accept sponsored posts (i have one today and monday) because I like to try new products and it 's a great way to do so. I never push off products on my readers that I wouldn't want. Accept sponsored posts! They'll open you up to new things.

  11. Oh I completely understand.. my day job is extremely consuming and my outfit posts are usually once a month at best... with my husband being my photographer it has to fit in our schedule not the other way around... The thing is, the dream is to do what we love and be happy while doing it.. Life ebbs and flows and sometimes the things we love to do need to go with it... just stay true to who you are, be real and make no apologies for it... and most importantly know that you are amazing regardless of what your blog is doing or not doing... Because at the end of the day we are defined by our character and the choices we make not by our hobbies or career.. or the lack there of... (thank God)... You rock girl friend... keep going strong!

  12. Keep it up! I've been in a blogging rut for months, mostly due to major life changes, but you're right about all it can give back to you. It can be incredibly rewarding and your hard work is appreciate!

  13. Kelsey, you are one of the honest bloggers I follow and that's why whenever I get the chance, your blog is one of the first ones I visit. I love blogging, but lately I haven't been able to blog at all. I miss it. But at the same time, school, research and work has taken over my life. I am hoping to start blogging at least once a week again, but am not really sure when that will happen.
    I am happy to hear that you have been inspired again and am looking forward to reading all of them! And hopefully, getting inspired as well! :) I would just like to say that, you are doing an amazing job Kelsey, and keep it up!

    - Sukhi


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