Writing Process Blog Tour

Hey everyone! I hope your week started off well! A little bit ago, Ari, from Ari’s Menu and a good friend of mine, invited me to do the Writing Process Blog Tour, which invites bloggers to let readers in on some behind the scenes information. I thought, why not!?

When I sat down to answer the questions, I realized that my answer is completely different from what it would have been 3 months ago, a year ago, or two years ago. It’s always changing as factors in my life change, such as free time, inspiration, and what I choose to write about.

Let’s get started!

1) What am I working on?

Quality over quantity. My blog is almost three years old and for most of that time I thought it was so important to blog at least every weekday. Nowadays, I just don’t have time for that and I don’t always have that much to say. I’m learning that it’s okay to post 2-3 times a week and focus on writing better content. Also, my life is so much busier now than it ever was before. I was supposed to get this post done by yesterday, but I had an amazing weekend instead.

PicMonkey Collage

2) How does my work differ from others of its genre?

This might sound corny, but my blog is different from any other because it’s just my voice, and no one else has my voice. Most of the time my posts are just the ramblings that are in my head; whether that’s a Thursday Thoughts post, or a more meaningful reflection post. Each post that I write is a reflection of what’s happening in my life at that time.

3) Why do I write what I do?

I started my blog because I wanted to write about my life and topics that other women could relate to in hopes that they might not feel alone. I wanted other women to feel connected, learn from my mistakes, and maybe smile every once in a while.

282636_4534038631522_478961729_n

4) How does your writing process work?

BAHAHAHAHAHA. WHAT? I have no writing process.

As I said, it’s purely what’s on my mind. If I think of something I want to write about, I sit down and write it. Sometimes it will be days ahead of time and take a little more extra effort with graphics, photos or editing, and other times I’ll write it in the morning, hit publish and there you go! I went through a period of planning ahead and scheduling posts, but that just doesn’t fit my writing style right now

 

Now that you’ve heard from me, I’m passing the torch along to Emily from Perfection Isn’t Happy! Emily and I have been reading each other’s blogs for years and have gone through some very similar “quarter life crisis” feelings, which definitely gave us a connection. I’ve been lucky enough to see Emily not only a few times in Chicago, but also at a couple blogger events as well!

HLS2

 

Why do you read certain blogs?

If you’re a blogger, what’s your writing process?

Did you do anything fun this past weekend?

Making Blends

Sooo it took me a little while to write this, didn’t it? I realized that many of you have read recaps from several other bloggers who attended Blend, and for the most part mine would have been the same. We all attended the same meals and workouts, we all talked to the same brands, went on the same hike and many of us explored Park City together as well.

What I want to talk about today is why Blend was one of the best weekends of my life (and no, it wasn’t just because of the swag!). Blend was great because of my own mindset, and because of the other women who attended.

My time in Utah was the first time I’d ever been pushed out of my comfort zone and still felt like myself. I’ll share more on that in a future post, but because I felt like my normal, everyday self, I was able to be more confident, outgoing and friendly than I’d ever been before.

being me

And what happens when you have self-confidence? You get to know the people around you. And let me tell you, Blend had a great group of people.

blendfriends

Photo Courtesy of Stephanie

A few of them I had met before, including my wonderful repeat roomies, Ari and Nicole. These two always make me smile and laugh, and I hope we stay friends for a very long time!

ari and nicole collage

As well as my roommate Ashley, who I’d met before briefly but loved the experience of getting to know her so much better. Ashley and I are so similar in many ways, and yet very different. She is such a strong person, a wonderful wife and mother, and a great listener.

ashley

One of my favorite moments of Blend was meeting Janae. I have been reading her blog for years and she inspires me with her strength and her faith. Of course pictures of her adorable daughter Brooke don’t hurt either. Why did I love meeting her so much? SHE recognized ME. That moment made me feel so loved and special, and reminded me that my blog and writing don’t go unnoticed.

Janea collage

Getting to meet Annette was like getting together with an old friend. Despite never meeting her before, it was like we’d known each other forever. Although she was only there for one night, I was so grateful for the extra time I got to spend with her and her daughter, Lily. She is a role model and an inspiration to me in so many ways.

Annette collage

Lindsay Cotter felt like a big sister figure to me, with her quiet confidence and quickness to take care of me and everyone around her. She loves to serve others as well as talk, listen and share.

Lindsay Wright, one of the organizers, has been a huge influence on my own change of perspective and growing faith. Her honesty, her love for her family, her desire to bring together a community and realness has always impressed me. I was grateful to have the opportunity to meet her, hug her and thank her.

photo 1 (39)

Beyond these women, almost everyone I met I was able to connect with quickly: fellow redheads, sisters in Christ, runners, cocktail-lovers, listeners, readers, and so much more.

Blend was not just a fun retreat in Park City, Utah for me, it was a lesson that I have so many people who support me, that I can be myself around people I barely know, and that I need to make a lot more money so I can start visiting these ladies!

BlendGroup2014

Photo Courtesy of Lindsay

 

Have you ever met someone that turned out exactly as you imagined?

Tell me about one of your favorite weekends ever!

To Share or Not To Share

Hey everyone! First of all – THANK YOU for all of your amazing comments from yesterday! I don’t think I’ll be able to get through all of them and respond but I read each one and some of you were so supportive and shared how you could relate, which I really appreciated. Yesterday’s post also got me thinking about how much I share, and where the line should be drawn on what I should or should not put out in a public space.

I’ve gotten a few questions and requests for blog posts over the past couple months about intuitive eating, binge eating, etc. and how I’m doing with the issue. Since I shared a lot of my story last year, I expect these kinds of questions – many of you are curious or going through the same thing, and I understand why people would want updates.

garden of the gods

But, I’ll be honest – I don’t love talking about these things on my blog anymore, which is why those types of posts (such as yesterday’s) are a little more rare. I think as I’ve gotten older I’ve gotten a lot more private about my life, not wanting to share everything on the internet. I also feel a little lost myself at the moment and am not entirely sure what to say or share with you all.

On the other hand, I started this blog so that I could be real and be someone that women reading could relate to. I wanted to put myself out there to start conversations, to make people feel like they weren’t alone and to connect with my readers. Avoiding personal topics makes this a lot more difficult at times. It’s a hard balance for me – deciding what and what not to share in these space and essentially for the world to see.

994372_686501149495_1101937334_n

Photo courtesy of Carissa G. Photography

Weirdly, it’s not the sharing with people I don’t know that bothers me, that’s easy. It’s knowing that my family, friends, old classmates and colleagues read this blog that makes me more hesitant to share. It’s weird to see someone in person knowing that they know way more about me than I would have normally shared with them, or that I know about them.

privacy

So if you have any specific questions or curiosities always feel free to email me at peaceloveandoats@gmail.com. As for the blog, I’m not really sure what will happen with what I choose to share, but like everything else, I’ll take it day by day.

 

If you’re a blogger – do you have a hard time drawing a line or finding a balance?

If you’re a reader, how do you feel about the topic?

Share the Love & Summer Running

I have a bit of a random post for you all today. I wanted to share a bunch of links but I only accumulated a few and some of them are getting a little “behind the times” so I thought I should get them to you asap! I also made a great running playlist that I wanted to share with you all, perfect for the summer.

First, let’s start with the link up! I read too many blogs, so I think you all should benefit from that in some way. Here are my favorites from the past couple weeks:

Kelsey teaches us all how to take an amazing race photo, even if it involves blocking someone else’s face (*cough* mine *cough*)

Laura shared 50 Easy Whole Food Meal Ideas. Not recipes necessarily, but closer to what I would throw together for a quick and healthy meal!

Heather wrote a great post about loving yourself right now… sounds familiar!

Clare shared a great article about the friends you make during your 20s

My friend sent me this article with a great message, about how no matter how old you are, you should focus on what you have, rather than what your missing at that point in your life.

 

And now for that summer running playlist! I got several of the songs from Janae’s running playlist and added a bunch more of my own favorites.

 

summerrunningplaylist

 

What’s the best post or article you’ve read recently?

What’s your favorite song right now?

Discovering New Blogs

Hey everyone! I hope your weeks all started off well! So, I called it yesterday – a few short minutes after publishing my post I decided that Monday needed to be a rest day. My whole body was just asking for a day off. Although I was super tempted in the evening to hit the gym, I knew I needed to stick to studying. So I did what any normal girl would do: I had a dance party. It took about 10 minutes, 1/9 the time it would have taken me to walk to the gym, workout, and walk back. And it was way fun.

I’ve always liked Blink 182 (thanks to my older brother), but I’ve developed a sudden and passionate love for some of their upbeat songs, so as soon as one came on, I turned it up and went crazy. I hope whoever lives below me can’t hear me jumping around…

Also, I had my first real physical therapy appointment yesterday! I’ve never been to a PT, so I wasn’t sure what was going to happen, but it went about how I expected. She assessed me by having me walk, and then stretching and feeling my hip and leg muscles. Haha I kind of enjoyed it, it was kind of like a massage, but stretching instead of massaging. Except the part where she punched my hip.

Yep, you read correctly. Don’t worry, she warned me ahead of time. She said my femur wasn’t fully in my hip joint, so she literally whacked it a couple times to start moving it back into the right place. It hurt, but I laughed??? I guess that’s how I deal with pain?

Anyway, I’m going back 2 more times this week and then once next week before I head home for Thanksgiving, with even more appointments scheduled after that. Thank goodness for insurance.

She said I can try running, but suggested I foam roll beforehand, run/walk, take it easy and stop immediately whenever I feel pain. Hey, I’ll take it! So we’ll see how that goes… I’m just glad this is my super busy week (other than finals), so I have plenty of time to make it into these appointments.

Well, enough about me! Today I wanted to share with you guys a few new blogs that I’ve discovered recently. You may have been reading these for ages… but I’ve found that there seem to be certain blog circles, where groups of bloggers all read the same blogs. When I went to the Healthy Living Summit I discovered SO MANY blogs I’d never heard of, and some girls thought it was odd I’d never heard of them! Prime example: Katie at Healthy Diva Eats. Do I live under a rock? I guess so.

One blog is called Modern Girl Nutrition: A Teen’s Guide to Eating Green.

image

I discovered Sunnie’s blog because I’ve seen her comment on mine, so I checked her out. She’s only FIFTEEN!!!! I’m so impressed with her, there’s no way I’d have been able to keep up a blog like that at 15, or eat so healthy! I’m pretty sure my freshman year of High School involved eating as little as I could all day (to fit in…. obviously) and then having oreos after school. Winning.

Back to Sunnie. She says (on her About Me page) after once eating “Nutella straight from the jar and downing Twizzler after Twizzler” she is now “dedicated to preserving the health of our country by sharing delicious, healthy recipes and great information.” She’s got a ton of informational posts, product reviews, and a bunch of healthy recipes. Definitely go check her out for some clean eats and healthy living!

Next up is Michelle at Peachy Palate: Eating My Way to a Healthy Life.

image

What first drew me in were her gorgeous photos, and then once I started following I saw that she posts a new recipe every day! Or at least has so far, which is impressive in itself. Everything looks so delicious and seems pretty easy to make. I can’t wait to try out one of her recipes! Currently returning to school to study nutritional therapy, Michelle has plenty of posts on nutrition and hundreds of recipes, all healthy and colorful. If you need a new recipe, this is the blog to go to!

Last but not least is Nutrition Nut on the Run: An Active Foodie’s Pursuit of a Healthy Life, One Run at a Time.

image

I discovered this blog only yesterday, when I saw a tweet about her 3rd year of blogging! Clearly I’m behind the times here…

Hillary is a California girl and a recent college graduate. After having a serious health scare, Hilary has found that eating wholesome, natural food is what helps her stay healthy. She writes about recipes, running, workouts and her life. Sounds like my kind of blog! I can’t wait to see more!

 

What are some of your favorite blogs?

Have you ever been to physical therapy?