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the view from the seattle ferry

This week… oof. I really don’t have words for the amount of stress I felt this week. I like to think that it started off well enough — on Saturday, I finally did something I’ve wanted to do for months: I got a tattoo in memory of my grandpa. This act made me feel really introspective, something that I journaled about a lot throughout the course of the week. But then, of course, stuff got in the way, namely business stuff. Not sure if you know (ha), but taxes are due, aka the most stressful time all year for yours truly. I’m still figuring out this whole ‘running my own business’ thing and this week really tested my strength in that vision. Like… to the point where I contemplated throwing in the towel and getting a ‘real’ job again. Yeah, I was that stressed out. I had to remind myself to take a  break though, something that doesn’t come easily. I made a nice meal for myself, drank a bit of wine, and zoned out to Broad City. I let myself sleep in and then try to tackle my inbox like a whole new person. Granted, I’m still feeling like a train hit me emotionally, but having a bit of distance helped.

I’m in a pinch here though — do you guys have any other tips for maintaining when you feel so freaking buried in all directions??

In case you missed it, here’s what happened on the blog this week:

Plus, a few other new & noteworthy things:

  • Grace from Design*Sponge got really honest this week with her Things That Scare Me post. You betcha I identify with a lot of what she wrote.
  • Gawker has a really interesting series called Mall Makeovers where women from all over the world go to their local mall and request a makeover that is indicative of the local beauty habits. It’s eye opening and extremely curious to me in that voyeuristic sort of way.
  • Over on Anthology, I shared some really inspiring posts: pressed flowers by Studio Maarten Kolk & Guus Kusters and rugs by Oyyo (the styling of these photos is pretty fantastic).
  • House of Brinson is at it again with their amazing guides. This week it’s iPhoneography. My favorite tip? Edit yourself.

photo from my Instagram — follow me here!

positive vibes

Last night I had dinner and drinks with a college friend I hadn’t seen in… 8ish years and it really got me thinking a LOT. We basically did the 5 minute version each of where we’ve been in that time and what’s happened in our lives. For example, in that time, I moved across the country 3 times. When you lay it all out like that… well, you’re bound to have this moment of overwhelming, abounding perspective. Or at least I did. It all kinda hit me like a ton of bricks. The last time I saw my friend, I was in a relationship that was on and off (and on and off and on… and off…) and totally unhappy with my work situation. I specifically remember at that time that I really, truly believed that that was it, that was my life from here on out. Now I know better. I’ve reinvented myself and my situation over and over since then… and I think I’m getting the hang of this thing called ‘life’ more than ever before. (more…)

i've got a confession to make: i haven't worked out in months. today's blog post is all about taking accountability and being responsibility for getting back on track. www.jojotastic.com

I have a confession to make: it’s been somewhere between 6-8 months since I’ve worked out, but over a year since I did it with any form of consistency. Even typing that makes me feel gross and so disappointed in myself. How did I let it go this far? Actually I know exactly how: prioritizing work over anything else, eating enough french fries for a small country, and way too much travel. I am softer than ever before and, frankly, don’t feel comfortable with how my body has changed. I read somewhere (no idea where) that the things you do in your 20s end up being habits for life. That frightens me.

I feel this change in my body and I don’t like it, in plain terms. I want to take accountability for my actions, so here goes: starting this week, I am going to the gym at least 4 times a week. I feel like that is a good number to start with so as not to overcommit, but to get myself committed and excited for the process. I scoped out this pilates studio in my neighborhood and plan to finally add the climbing gym back into the mix. My goal is to keep this up for a month as a way to jumpstart a new pattern, one that includes making time for myself to be physically healthy.

photo credit: Claire Hudson. see more of this shoot here

today on the the blog: thoughts on my 30th birthday www.jojotastic.com

Today is my 30th birthday and I’m feeling pretty damn introspective about it. I’ve been spending a lot of time journaling, actually. You’ve all followed my journey for the past few years and it’s meant so much to me that I wanted to share a bit of my thoughts with you.

(more…)

sharing a bit about what's it's like 3 days into my big move to Seattle

I’m queuing up some posts for the rest of the week and I felt like I was due for a check in. All I could think about is how I really just need to air out some feelings I’ve been having. Officially, I’ve been in Seattle for 3 days and, overall, it’s totally great. This feels like home… which is exactly the point of all of this, right?

It’s just when I really start to think about things… that things get complicated in my head. There are so many things going on, so much change, so much unknown. When will my stuff arrive? Do the people in my new co-working space like me? Will I bump into my ex-boyfriend and will my hair actually be clean that day? When will my cat stop howling in the middle of the night because she’s scared of the new apartment? And why is that man peeing in the alleyway below to my kitchen?

Stuff like that.

I haven’t been sleeping well and I think I’m sort of fighting off a cold. My body needs a break in a big way. For the past few days, I was able to distract myself from everything thanks to the road trip, the new apartment, the new office, everything. Now though… it’s really catching up to me.

So yeah… there’s that. I just felt like I needed to get it out there and now I feel a bit calmer.

image via my Instagram

today's blog post is all about dealing with feelings of being totally overwhelmed and uninspired www.jojotastic.com

A very weird thing has been happening to me lately — I feel totally overwhelmed by everything going on in my life… and entirely helpless to do anything about it. This morning (and, really, most of today) it felt like there were waves of anxiety practically emanating off of me. I rush from one thing to another without actually accomplishing anything. I’m exhausted, but wake up between the hours of 3 and 5 am wide awake and rarin’ to go. My body is desperately asking me to slow down, but I keep piling it on. I have so much going on: I’m still struggling to cope with the loss of my grandpa, I’m moving and currently living out of a friend’s house, even my cat isn’t here with me. Plus, I won’t have a space to call my own for 10 more days, something that has always helped to keep me grounded.

I really, really need a break. And sometimes it feels like this is all impacting my creativity. I feel an urge to constantly post, to keep up with other bloggers. Then I feel paralyzed and totally uncreative. That’s when boring, meaningless blog posts happen and no one likes that.

I’m letting this post be it today. I’m off doing a really exciting photoshoot, something I can’t wait to share in the coming months, but for right now… I need a bit of a time out today, a few moments away from ‘the overwhelm.’

Photography by Greg Zulkie using actual film!

all ears // a spotify playlist for for my upcoming road trip from san francisco to seattle

I want to do something different this time around. I don’t want this month’s All Ears playlist to be love songs, ballads, and the like. That just feels… played out (pun intended?). Instead, I want this month’s playlist to take you, my readers, through a bit of the journey that I’m facing this month. This month (really, in less than 14 days) I leave California in my trusty old VW and drive north to the only place that’s ever felt like a true home, Seattle. I’m leaving behind so much, but in my soul I know this is the right choice for me. It’s bittersweet, yes, but it’s the only thing that actually makes sense in my life right now.

This playlist has two parts: the first is meant to be a bit of a love letter to California. This gorgeous city and state welcomed me with open arms and, although it’s only been year, I find myself changed and improved. The second half of the playlist feels like the best way I can ever possibly explain all of the feelings that are wrapped up in what it means to go ‘home.’ Sometimes it’s easier to let another explain the emotions.

You can play via this widget or add the playlist via Spotify:
photo from my Instagram — follow along on my #PNWpilgrimage to see more. listen to more All Ears playlists here.