Over the past year, there were a lot of things I heard talked about that really caused me to pause and think. More and more people expressed their frustrations over there being way too much to get done and not enough time to do it. Magazine worthy, Pinterest-perfect images caused people to feel like they must attain the same (unattainable) perfection in their own homes. Older generations discussed how much simpler and enjoyable life was thirty or more years ago. Younger mothers turned to frozen chicken nuggets and Kraft macaroni and cheese over a homemade meal for their family, not necessarily for the lack of time but rather the lack of knowledge in how to prepare something from scratch. And over and over again, people brought up how an overabundance of things in their life was zapping the time and energy from their day.
And there were issues in my own life as well. I'd look at Pinterest or at the beautiful images posted by my favorite bloggers and question whether or not I was talented enough. I'd sit down to type a post and freeze because whatever I was sharing never felt authentic. The challenges I faced were the same as I've had ever since starting this blog. It just has never felt like a real representation of myself and has never fulfilled me in the way that I had hoped that it would.
When starting this blog back in the spring of 2013, I had a vision. It is as meaningful to me today as when I typed the words for that first post to the world. The problem is, I fell into the trap of thinking that I (and my blog) needed to be like everyone else and I haven't been true to myself and my passions. I've only scratched the surface. For quite a period of time, I've been feeling a tug on my heart and it has only grown stronger that things need to change.
For almost four years now, I've been blogging and creating a platform to compete with my fellow bloggers and friends. And I can't do it anymore. Things were pretty silent around here through much of 2016 because I was tired of trying to figure all this out while still posting things that I didn't feel proud of. My blog will not help anyone, including me, unless I am willing to stand out there on my own and compete just against myself.
Much like life, blogging becomes most difficult when you play the comparison game and do not present the real you to the world. You keep trying and working, but nothing ever quite clicks into place. You see the success of the amazing bloggers and entrepreneurs around you and question why the same doesn't happen for your own venture. You notice the beautiful way they present their homes and get down on yourself for not creating such perfection in your own house. Whether it is in blog-world, your work environment, or the parent teacher group at your child's school, if you aren't being you, you won't ever be satisfied.
What really gets me excited is learning tips that will help me beautify my home and be successful at the things I try. The internet is aplenty with total room makeovers and house tours......articles about organizing your life in 30 days or less.....and cooking a fancy meal for 20 guests at a time. But there is a small problem with that. Unless you know the basics of decorating, the fundamentals of organizing even just your junk drawer, and basic skills like roasting a chicken, you can't easily progress successfully to that bigger picture.
Up to this point, I feel as though my blog has been here to inspire and to show the things I'm creating.
But deep in my heart, I want to teach. It isn't so much that I want to show you what I did, but rather give you the information you need to do something yourself. I want you to leave here inspired not necessarily by what I've created, but what I've taught you to try on your own. My hope is that I can support you, my readers, and encourage you to break free from this stressed-out, overwhelmed, and disconnected world that we seem to be creating for ourselves. Our families, homes, and life in general deserve to feel great once again.
I can remember watching Martha Stewart as a teenager and making notes of different tips that she gave to make household tasks easier. And quickly scribbling a cookie recipe down that I knew I could bake. Even now, it is never an entire magazine article that normally catches my attention.....it is the detail of how books were styled on a bookshelf in the background of a picture. Or it is the tip about how cooking a turkey upside down in the pan will give you juicier meat. For quite awhile I was saving pages out of the Pottery Barn catalogs not because I wanted to buy something.....it was because the way they styled what was for sale caught my eye, like a bowl full of old photos on the coffee table or a collection of different sizes and shapes of candlesticks on top of the mantel.
It is in those small tidbits of information that you learn to decorate, craft, organize, clean, cook and bake. It is in those details that you create something special and unique for yourself. And that is where you'll find the beauty in your life and gain the confidence that you are capable of doing whatever you set your mind to.
My vision now for this blog is short, manageable ideas that you can instantly try yourself. I want to start at the beginning and build a foundation of knowledge to help you in your home. When you know the basics of how to do something, you become more successful at what you try and you save time and frustration by doing it correctly.
And my hope is that I can be able to give the information you need to live life a little more perfect. Striving for perfection is not necessarily a bad thing if you frame it in the context of aiming to be your best. Setting yourself up for success and learning along the way as you practice and experiment will lead you to your own version of perfection that you can be proud of. And when you can be content with the life you've created, those "perfect" people around you become a source of inspiration, rather than a source of unhappiness.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read the words of my heart today. I'm really looking forwards to starting a new chapter here while taking you all along for the ride.
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