It is mind-boggling to me that I’ve been blogging for five years. FIVE YEARS TODAY. I cannot think of one other thing in my life that I’ve done consistently in my life for five years: no relationship, no sport, no hobby, no job has been such a stable force in my life as this blog.
There have been ups and downs to be sure. There have been times when I’ve wanted to do nothing but this blog, to figure out how to make it my full-time job (to just do the traveling and writing and taking photos that my bio claims I do). And there have been other times when I’ve just been DONE, when I’ve wondered about the why and the time I invest and whether it’s all really worth it and when it feels like more of an obligation than a passion.
Although the extremes certainly come in waves, most of the time, my relationship with this blog is as steady as they come. It’s just what I do: it’s why I take the photos and why I explore new neighborhoods and why I’m always up for an adventure or a Instagram photo shoot with a new outfit or an early-morning coffee date at a cute cafe. It’s why I spend every birthday in a different country and skip taking cabs to save for international flights. Because, sure, I do it all for me and because I enjoy it—but also because it’s something to blog about, a sort of self-serving circle of travel and styling and all of the lattes I can drink.
When I started this blog five years ago, I’m not sure what I wanted out of it or what sort of success would have happened in my wildest dreams. Actually, that’s a lie: I wanted a book deal then and I want a book deal now, but the difference is that now, I actually understand that you need to do something worth writing about and you actually need to sit down and write in order to have a book and a deal.
But as Henry David Thoreau said: “How vain to sit down to write when you have not stood up to live.”
In the past year, I’ve celebrated my birthday in Turkey, spent an amazing summer in the Berkshires and Avalon Beach and Rockaway Beach, done yoga in Nicaragua and shopped with my mom in Paris. I’ve worked with two major national beauty brands (one will be released later this year!) and I’ve had countless coffees with the coolest people in the travel, lifestyle and fashion industries. I quit my job at ONA and started a new one at Vimeo, and stayed in my cozy Brooklyn apartment and sipped wine with a wonderful group of girlfriends in the city and kept dating someone who makes me laugh every single day.
Not every day is the most exciting day of my life, but every day, there is something that makes me think just how darn grateful I am for the opportunity to live in this city and be surrounded by these people and travel how I want to travel.
In some ways, this past year confirmed my slow (and sometimes hesitant) shift from travel to lifestyle blog. Because I think what the past five years has taught me is that you don’t need to go across the world to find yourself, and you don’t have to go to a brand-new country to be in awe, and you don’t have to even leave your city to experience a brand-new perspective.
If you want to travel the world, then go. But if you find comfort in a stable savings account and joy in a perfectly-organized closet, there’s nothing wrong with creating a routine and committing to a relationship and buying fresh flowers every week. Travel is still a huge part of my lifestyle, to be sure–but I feel lucky that I’ve grown into a life that’s more than just booking the next plane ticket.
A look back: first-ever post, first blog-aversary, second blog-aversary, third blog-aversary and fourth blog-aversary. As always: thank YOU for reading and for making all of this possible. Cheers to the last five, and the next one up.