Hi there! Sorry to leave you hanging over the long (and very shoppable, if you’re into that) weekend! Although I tend to delusionally think of myself as some kind of superhero capable of working countless hours and burning the candle at both ends, it turns out that I am exhausted. Just wiped out. All the fun and effort to get this new site for my blog launched turned out to be a more monumental effort (still in progress, damn you comments why won’t you import???) than I presumed and planned for. While I’m so proud of the finished result — and delighted by the positive feedback in comments, emails, messages and such, THANK YOU — I’m also creatively drained.
This blog has been so many things for me, from a fun escape to a business and back to a fun escape again. I have made so many mistakes along the way of this blog and had some really great wins too. I love sharing my shopping hobby with you but I also see this new site as a great opportunity to stop, slow down and examine where we’re going. For example, I’ve had so much fun shooting and sharing my OOTDs over the last several months…but at the beginning of May, I felt my Spring outfit shopping is pretty much complete aside from a few odds and ends I’ll pick up, and I felt weird about the idea of continuing to shoot looks which would mostly be borrowed. So I took a pause for now…I’ve got two outfits left in the hopper to share and then I’ll be focusing on working with what I already own for the time being, unless of course some magnificent item comes along that I must have. I’ll always be looking for new stuff to add to my wishlist because it’s a fun habit that brings me peace and happiness, but my buying is on a serious slowdown right now. Which is not a directive that yours should also be on a slowdown…lord knows there have been times when I’ve delighted in shopping while others are holding back.
Additionally there are a lot of balls in the air in my personal life right now. In my 20s I used to swing from happiness to sadness and back again. In my 30s I’ve learned that I can be simultaneously happy with my life overall and yet have tinges of sadness dotting the day. This may sound completely obvious — duh Roxy, you can be happy and sad and feel multiple emotions at the same time — yet somehow I truly didn’t know that. I’ve settled into a nice contentment with my life, yet also yearning for what’s next, the exciting future I can picture that hasn’t yet manifested into reality. I still feel little pangs of sadness daily about losing my Dad, and wondering how best to take care of my Mom, who was married to Dad for exactly 50 years before his death last Fall and has never lived on her own until now. While my Dad’s final decline was happening, I also moved to a new apartment with my boyfriend after selling our starter place much faster than we expected to. We have the money from the sale invested and are currently renting to see what the home market does here. I thought this new rental apartment would be our dream home; we are quickly discovering its many shortfalls, from leaky master bathroom ceilings to fob-accessed tenant rooms where the fobs stop working at the worst possible moments. It’s total first world problems kind of issues but they tug on me daily. Home has always been respite and right now it’s hard to relax fully at home. The good news is we only signed a 2-year lease; the bad news is we signed a 2-year lease.
Speaking of money, I am also looking more seriously at my financial situation. Being in my mid-30s in NYC, I am delighted to say that I feel successful in my professional career…but I do not feel successful financially. Although I am ever better at managing my finances debts are a tricky recurring issue for me. I pay off my credit cards, then months later they seem to be maxed out again. I feel ahead financially, then a surprise debt comes along that wipes out my savings. I read an article on Facebook last week a friend shared about a late 20-something couple who lives in Brooklyn but ‘barely scrapes by’ on $500k a year and realized…that could also be said of me. I feel it’s important to be transparent about this since I write about shopping. I never advocate spending beyond one’s means here and always advise taking a break if you feel pressured to spend. My debts are not shopping debts but rather business ones — my issue seems to be that I invest too much in my businesses before they are making enough revenue to cover the expenses, leaving me pissing away money on interest. In my mind I consider my personal and business finances separate, but again as this is a shopping blog I want to be open with the fact that my finances are not ideal and I’m working to get where I’d like to be.
Additionally, this blog provides a steady stream of fun income for me but isn’t reliable — I’m currently having a huge issue with one of my affiliate programs (the links you click on here are nearly always affiliate links, which pay me a small percentage if you make a purchase) which has been improperly tracking my earnings since February yet can’t seem to figure out how or why. As a result, my earnings through that program have dropped by nearly 80% in the last 3 months. Several years ago I had a similar issue with RewardStyle, who incidentally has been amazing for the last several months, and now it’s Shopstyle Collective’s turn to fudge it up with me. It’s alarming how opaque the affiliate model is…when I have an issue as an ‘influencer’, the affiliate networks can say they’re tracking everything correctly and unless you have really good direct relationships with retail partners (which I luckily do in many cases) there’s no way for a blogger to challenge that. I’m sure in the end everything will be rectified and I’ll be made whole, but in the meantime it’s frustrating and draining. The good news is that I know I’m still in love with this blog because even with the prospect of earning 80% less from it per month via that affiliate program, I want to continue blogging! It makes me smile to know this blog still lights up that happiness in my heart. I adore sharing this space with you, the community!
Anyway, I am not trying to make this a woe is me post, because in truth as I alluded to above my days are mainly happy tinged with moments of sadness. This isn’t a feel sorry for me post but rather a pulling back of the veil to share where my head is currently at and speak with you openly and vulnerably from my heart. The long weekend gave me a great excuse to step away for a few days and think about the kind of shopping and musings content I’d like to write going forward, and I think I need another day or maybe three to get all the way there. I’ve also taken a short Instagram sabbatical which has been so good for my mental health. I used to run myself ragged and then keep going until I turned into a mean, vile boor. I think I ran into that wall enough times to finally learn to back off and rejuvenate instead. (I hope I’ve learned!)
Thank you so much for being here, and for your continued support. I would like to give you a big hug!!