HTC Chit-Chats & Updates: 5 Things in my Shopping Cart, Fall Playlist & Current Feelings on Blogging
It’s been a while since I sat down and did a Chit-Chat post – July was the last one, I think. It’s no secret that I’ve really struggled to post consistently here this year, and every time I start to get back into the swing of things, something happens to throw me off again. And recently, I’ve been having a hard time wanting to blog at all. More on that below. Here’s a general life update, moody music for the last few days of October, and where I’m at with blogging:
- I’ve been at my new job as a Recruiting Coordinator since the end of July and I am so happy that I made the move. The transition was really, really hard. I cried every day for the first week, thinking I had made a mistake and wondering if I should try to go back to my old job. The company I’m working for is growing at an exponential speed, so there wasn’t an exact playbook for what my responsibilities were or what the expectations were for me. I don’t do well when I don’t know EXACTLY what I’m supposed to be doing. However, I got over that hump and realized that I had the opportunity to BUILD processes and routines and now, I love it. I love that my opinion matters to my managers, I love that they trust me to take lead on projects, and I love that I have the ability to make suggestions for improvement and then implement them. We’re getting ready to move to our brand-new multi-million dollar building in December, which will make my commute all of five minutes and I CANNOT WAIT!
- We finished our year of the concert this month by going to see Imagine Dragons live with my sister and brother-in-law. (ICYMI, we didn’t have time to go on a trip to celebrate our anniversary this year between buying the house and my sister’s wedding, so we decided to celebrate all year long by going to concerts! We saw Twenty-One Pilots, Bastille, 30 Seconds to Mars & Muse, and ended with Imagine Dragons.) They were absolutely UNBELIEVABLE live (and, dare I say, BETTER?) and their show had an incredible message of unity, positivity, and hope. I highly recommend seeing them if you ever get the chance!
- Dustin and I decided that it was time to make an investment for the impending Zombie Apocolypse and sell his little sports car for a big rig! We bought a 2001 Jeep Cherokee in August and have been working on building it up into a dedicated off-roading/crawling rig ever since. This baby (who Dustin lovingly refers to Dinah) has a 4 & 1/2 suspension lift, 33-inch off-set rim mudders, and an Aussie Locker in the rear for crawling. Since we brought it home, Dustin has replaced the steering stabilizer, power steering lines, emergency brake, rotors, brake booster, and we have added on a sick light bar to the top. Even though I don’t work on the Jeep, I have loved learning about how it works and what we can do to make it even more powerful on rocky trails. Next project is to upgrade the steering system/track bar completely and put some rock sliders on the sides. If you follow us on Instagram, you’ll have seen that we’ve already taken her out on some great adventures and our plan is to have her ready to go for a week-long crawling trip in Moab!
The BEST part about having a Jeep? Both of my sisters and their husbands have Jeeps, too! It WASN’T planned to be that way, but we all ended up getting Jeeps within a year of each other. It’s been so awesome to go on adventures together with our little Jeep Brigade and we can’t wait to go to Moab all together in February.
- We’ve made some great progress in the house since July, including painting ALL of the walls on the main floor, furnishing the front sitting room, and buying a new couch for our living room. We just cut down the SPAWN OF SATAN apple trees in my backyard and I seriously shed tears of joy when they came out. Teddy and Rosie loved to eat the rotten apples that fall down and then puke them all over my house, so I’m very stoked that I no longer need to worry about them!
- Dustin’s grandmother passed away at the beginning of October, so we packed up very last minute, got in the car, and made the drive from Utah to California so we could be with his family and celebrate his grandmother’s life. It was sad to be going on a trip for those reasons, but Dustin and I made the best of it that we could. That included stopping at the Truckee Dinner for brunch, where Dustin’s company, Workday, was founded, and spending an afternoon walking along the Riverwalk in Reno and catching a last-minute movie before going out to Sushi with my brother-in-law’s parents.
- I am officially 11 years cancer free as of last week. A lot of emotions come with this time of year, especially the ever complex survivor’s guilt, but I am grateful for one more year under my belt and the hope of year 12 around the corner.
Things in my Shopping Cart
I’ve been doing a lot of “window shopping” online recently – you know, where I put a bunch of things in my shopping cart but don’t check out? I am getting a bonus with my next paycheck, so I definitely will be able to buy a couple of these things, but I’d love your help choosing (because I’m the most indecisive person in the world.)
Reindeer Doublehood Sweatshirt – Okay, I already have three doublehoodies, so I realized I probably don’t NEED this one, but it’s SO festive and Christmasy! Plus, these are the coziest sweatshirts in the world and I LOVE the thumb holes. I know I would wear this every weekend leading up to Christmas (and probably after, let’s be real) and it would look great with leggings because it’s more of a tunic length. It’s a bit pricey, but man, are these hoodies QUALITY!
AE Reinforced Distressed Jeggings – I’ve been looking at these pants for weeks. I love that they are distressed, but patched at the same time, so they would be perfect for fall and winter. AE jeans are always dependable and durable. I’m not sure how I feel about the high-rise on the waist, but a lot of people say they hit more mid-rise. These would look so good with all of my sweaters and booties, PLUS they are 30% off with the code SHOP30. Really tempting.
“What the Elf” Pajamas – Oh my gosh, I’m dying over these. I’ve never had “Christmas Pajamas” because as cute as they are, it seemed silly to have PJ’s I could only wear until Christmas Eve. BUT THESE ARE HYSTERICAL and also look so cozy and ALSO I could wear the pants all winter long. Soooo, really, I think I might need these!
BP. Knit Beanie with PomPom – My sister wore a beanie with a pompom to the Imagine Dragons concert and it looked SO cute on her and it made me want one SO badly! This one looks really cozy and thick, comes in several colors, and is at a great price point (with free shipping & returns.)
Tarte Blush Bliss Palette – The Tarte Blushes are my favorite of all time and I loveeee seeing their holiday blush palettes come out. I bought one two years ago and it is the one I reach for the most every time. Do I really need more blushes? Probably not. But the quality is so good and the packaging is so pretty AND Ulta currently has it on sale for 23.00.
I have playlists dedicated for each season on my Spotify, but I have to say that my Fall Playlist is my favorite. I am ALL about moody, acoustic, layered music during this time of year that makes you feel nostalgic and cozy all at once. Definitely had to share it on here – must-listen tracks include Faux by Novo Amor & Ed Tullett and Forest Fires by Axel Flovent. So dreamy. So perfect for those windy, cloudy, raw days.
Current Feelings on Blogging
- Like I mentioned earlier, it’s been really hard to get back into the swing of things with blogging since we moved at the beginning of the year. I’ve really questioned myself and my blog over the last few months, especially. There seems to be a lot of negative connotations with blogging lately – that people who blog are fake and that they only write about things that they get paid for, instead of being honest. It’s made me question if I’m contributing to those negative feelings – do I make others feel bad when I post a professional picture on Instagram? Am I really helping others by writing here or do I come off as a poser just trying to get free stuff? For the last few months, I seriously considered ending my blog and just being done with it all. The numbers game and the algorithms and the comparison and the pressure were just weighing me down so much.
- I had a heart to heart with Dustin about blogging a couple weeks ago and shared how discouraged and sad it was making me. He asked me to tell him why I started blogging and what good things had come from it. I realized that I started blogging as a creative outlet during a bit of a mid-life crisis and it was so therapeutic for me to just write and share fun little tips, tricks, and fashion finds. I found some of my very best friends through blogging – girls who I have talked to literally every day for over two years. I’ve developed new skills and talents, I’ve become a stronger writer, and I’ve learned more about running my own side-hustle. Most importantly, blogging has helped me find a new confidence in who I am and a new peace with the body I’m in. It has given me (and others like me) a voice when it comes to things like being a cancer survivor or surviving trauma. Blogging has done SO many good things for me and it has brought me so much joy. The more I thought about all the good my blog has done for me, the more excited I became about writing again.
- Here’s the thing: I don’t ever, ever, want Hey There, Chelsie to feel fake, to feel like one giant ad, or to make other women feel bad about themselves. I don’t ever want to come across as a poser or unauthentic or full of crap. And while I love that I’m able to partner with brands and try out new products to recommend, that’s not why I started blogging. I just want to make it as clear as possible that I am just an everyday kind of girl trying to find my way in this world as a wife, as a cancer survivor, as a woman, and as a future mother. I want this to be a space that others can escape to for some light-hearted reading or a place where others can find inspiration or confidence to try new things and pursue a vibrant life. I lose sight of that sometimes, but I’m ready to come back to it.
- Basically, all I’m saying is that I am going to let the pressure off myself a little here. I’m not going to worry if I don’t post X amount of times a week on the blog or on Instagram. I’m going to post what I want to post and not worry about niching because lifestyle blogs matter. That might a makeup tutorial or it might be a room reveal or it might be Pinterest tips or it might a random life update. I will still take sponsored work when it is the RIGHT opportunity and I won’t overbook myself so that I feel burnt out. I am going to keep it as real as I can here, and not let numbers or algorithms suck the joy from blogging or why I started it in the first place. Hold me to it, okay?
Things to Check Out:
- ANYONE ELSE BINGE STRANGER THINGS SEASON 2 LAST WEEKEND? Dustin and I have been binge watching season one all week long so that we were fully prepared for season two. We went to a party Friday night to watch the season premiere and then binged the rest on Saturday and Sunday with my sister and brother-in-law. If you are feeling down about season two coming and ending so quickly, here’s a list of 23 Underrated Netflix Shows to Watch so you can fill up your time while we wait for season three.
- As I’ve been reevaluating my relationship with my blog and where I want to take it from here, I found this article on being a minimalist business owner REALLY helpful. It helped me realize that I just needed to simplify things to reduce the overwhelm and stress I was experiencing.
- Everyone has been talking about their love for their Instapots recently and I feel like maybe I’m missing out? Does anyone have one? Is it really that amazing? I read this super helpful article to Instapots, but I still feel overwhelmed by them?
Okay so, that’s where I’m at these days and what I’ve been up to and why the blog has been a bit quiet recently. But hey, thanks for sticking around while I figure it all out. Let me know what you’ve been up to below? xoxo