Forest Fairy

Camping at Lake Cushman

The first day of July was my husband’s 30th birthday, so we took a camping trip that weekend to Lake Cushman, WA. It was one of the most beautiful camping spots we’ve ever been to, with large yet private camp sites nestled into the evergreens, a large, warm lake not even five minutes away, and absolutely no cell phone service. Having an entire weekend away from phones, Facebook, Instagram, emails, and everything I am so connected to on a daily basis really struck home how much I am used to checking my apps.

If I have to go to the bathroom, I browse Facebook or read a Kindle book. If I’m on a long walk, I scroll Instagram stories. If I’m in a beautiful place I’m always searching for the best shot to share with friends. I habitually reach for my phone to check notifications when I’m bored, when I’m tired, when I’m going to be sitting for a long while, when I’m a passenger in the car, when I’m just kicking back in front of the fire… and having three full days of no service at all really emphasized the unconscious urges every time I went to check my phone and realized I coudn’t do anything with it but tell time.

I missed my online connections, being able to share my adventures with close friends who live far away, being able to read books when Evie fell asleep on me for an hour, being able to chronicle our trip easily. But it also pushed me to reevaluate how I use technology, the time I spend on an app, and what I share online.

Lately, I have missed blogging. If you have followed me for a while, you might have noticed that my posts have gradually fallen from 4-5x a week to 2-3x a week, then to 1-2x a week and in these last weeks everything has been sporadic. Part of this is due to my wanting to spend as much time having adventures as I can with my family. Our entire summer of weekends are planned out, with camping trips and mini vacations and every adventure we can take our kids on, and that leaves little to no time for photographing outfits.

So, I have missed posting regularly for a while. But I miss it in other ways, too. Today, as I sat to finally share these photos nearly ten days after they were taken, it struck me that I miss blogging not only because time has not allowed it, but also in the way that blogging used to be.

When I first started blogging, this was purely a diary for life. We had just moved to a new state, I knew nobody, and I wanted to chronicle something. I was new to posting online, having only ever shared my fiction before, so I had a fake name. Eventually, it evolved into photo blogging and I shared my daily outfits at the end of every rambling post. Then, fashion took over and I shared my daily outfits whether they were perfect or not.

But I feel like as the years have gone on and I’ve reached for what I thought I wanted to be nearly ten years ago when I started this… is no longer something I want. Yes, I love having beautiful photos and I love wearing vintage. I love doing pinup hair and makeup. I love all of that, and I will never quit loving that. But I don’t know if that’s who I really am at the root of blogging. I don’t know if that’s truly what I want for this blog.

Blogging, for me, was always a hobby. Something I could share daily without too much pressure. A creative endeavor that combines things I like to do that I never planned to make into anything other than a sort of visual diary of life. And the way it has evolved has taken away that diary. I no longer feel like I can post daily outfits for fear of something not being good enough, not fitting the aesthetic of vintage/pinup that I’ve created. I mentioned a little while ago that I really wanted to start sharing daily outfits again, and the response was mixed. Some people loved my “old” blog and daily style, others prefer the way it has evolved now and the more selective style I share.

So, I hesitated.

I wondered if I should really continue to blog. I wondered if I really want to blog. If I should just give it up for a while, or forever. If it was really worth the stress and hours I put into it. If it was really something I wanted to continue. The more I tried to schedule things and make it easier on myself, the less I enjoyed posting.

But I know I don’t want to quit. Sharing my style with whomever wants to see it has always been a source of joy in my life. I just need to remember what it used to be, and devolve a little.

So this summer, blogging has taken a back seat to life. I want to spend more time with my kids, enjoying adventures, and less time worrying about whether my blog outfit will fit into the weekend somewhere. This summer, my blogging style may change yet again. If I feel like it, I might start posting daily style again solely because that is what I’ve always loved the most. I won’t be worrying about schedules, I won’t be worrying about daily posts or weekly posts or bi-weekly posts. I won’t be worrying about the content I write to go along with whatever photos I share.

And sure, maybe my photos won’t be as pretty, my outfits won’t be as coordinated, and my makeup definitely won’t be on point. But that’s okay with me, and I hope it’s okay with you, too. Just like my life, this blog is ever-evolving, and I want it to remain a visual diary of who I am.

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  • This post perfectly sums up how I’ve been feeling about blogging lately. I notice I spend far too much time on my phone and not enough with the people I love. I look at beautiful locations as places for photo shoots, not places to enjoy. Reading this made me feel a lot better about my shift in perspective of blogging. I’m glad to hear you’ll be spending more time with those adorable kids of yours and can’t wait to see where this next chapter of your blog goes. <3

    xo, Helene
    http://www.circleskirtsandpetticoats.wordpress.com

  • Julie Coppenrath

    I gave up Facebook in January. It was the best decision I have ever made. I’m literally a happier person. What I did was I posted I was leaving and if anyone wanted to keep in touch – messenger me. I wanted to go back to the “vintage” way of connecting with people. Phone calls or letters. I realized I didn’t need to know everyone’s daily ooinions and what was happening in their lives on a daily basis. I prefer to have actual face to face time and for those away from me – a phone call or even better skype. To help me stick to my decision I unfriended everyone. I tried before to just delete the app but before long I was back on it. It took up so much of my time and attention away from my family and those around me. Now I am more connected and happier. I kept Instagram but I mostly only follow interests rather than people I know.

    It’s been liberating. I’m getting so much done. My brain literally feels less bogged down.

    As far as you blogging, I can’t say I follow you because of vintage clothing. I follow you because of the way you write. It’s an easy read. I enjoy the styles you put together but mostly I enjoy reading about you and your life. Do what brings you peace. It shouldn’t feel like an obligation. Maybe right now it’s a journal style. That’s ok. Let it evolve naturally. I’ll read it.

  • I think you need to focus on what YOU want – others’ opinions won’t matter in the end. You have to be true to you. I have often wondered if I should bother with my recipe posts (not that they happen as frequently as they used to) as they do not get as many views/comments/traction but I also don’t want to just stop posting them because of that – the sweet treats are a part of my blog’s mission/purpose. If I stop just because they don’t “do as well”, I am not staying true to me, really.

    So do whatever you want to do – it’s supposed to be fun for you, after all!!

    http://www.inanutshellblog.com