For the better part of this year, I'd been grappling with whether or not to continue blogging. Social media and content marketing take up most of my time personally and professionally, and I was spent trying to keep up with it all. My Year of Simplify focuses on slowing down, and that meant spending more time offline being present in my moments. And still, despite all of these changes I'd welcomed into my life, something didn't seem right.
I bought my SquareSpace site five months ago, and finally started looking through old posts to see what would make the cut in my migration from Blogger. Holy cow. What a trip!
I was so good at writing headlines back in the day! I love how unabashed and free I was. I wrote about anything and everything on my mind, and I gave no fucks what people might’ve thought about my opinion. What happened along the way that made me lose that?
When I realized my audience grew beyond my boyfriend and sister, the fear and insecurity of putting thoughts out there scared the shit out of me. That's what happened.
I used to write about everything. Civic opportunities for good Seattleites looking for volunteer gigs, boards to join and things to do. Since day one I’ve written about boutiques and events I thought were cool, with no one prompting or persuading me. I shopped somewhere and I liked it, so I talked about it. I met a lot of inspiring small business owners though my job at the chamber of commerce, and I wanted to share their stories, so I did. I danced my life away and met some amazing people at events, and I wanted others to have those same experiences. None of that has changed. It is sad to take a trip down memory lane and see posts about stores that have since closed, designers who aren’t designing anymore, venues that have shut down.
I started Fresh Jess in the midst of that 2008 recession. There are a lot of things I wrote about that don’t exist anymore. RIP Goods, Snowboard Connection, Tulip, GEMS Sneakershop, Damselfly, Girl Power Hour, Yo Son, The War Room, Daily Candy, Olivine, Rover’s, Madison Park Conservatory, DELI, Luisa Taqueria & so many more. I wrote about Obama’s first election, from the exciting election season to his first few accomplishments in office. Slowly that faded and gave way to other parts of my life. That was such a pivotal moment on many levels, and I am so grateful to have these posts as a means to look back at that exciting time in our nation’s history.
You’ve seen all of my fleeting and not-so-fleeting obsessions. Harry Potter, Rob & Big, bulldogs, inspiring women, Georges St. Pierre, Twilight, Nicki Minaj, Frank Ocean, Nikes, Kanye and of course, Queen Beyonce.
Of course, there are other businesses and events still going strong to this day. I wrote about them too. Shoutout Trophy Cupcakes, Kona Kitchen, Sweet Life in Olympia, Teddy Bear suite at the Fairmont Olympic, skillet bacon jam, Seattle Works, Gene Juarez, CRAVE Seattle, and the list goes on.
I wrote about grand openings of Wing Luke Asian Museum, Alive & Well, Lil Woody’s, Live Aloha Hawaiian festival, Show Pony in Fremont, H&M, Urban Yoga Spa, Homegrown, and so much more.
I wrote about meetups that were organized so we could figure out the big bad world of blogging - and later, social media. I wrote about very unique things happening in Seattle from a Seattleite’s point of view, and I wasn’t paid to do it. I wasn’t a journalist or a magazine editor. I just did it. I just do it. I am still doing it. I will not stop as long as there are stories to tell. And are there so many incredible stories to tell.
No matter how much the world of blogs and social media grows, changes and saturates, Fresh Jess will always be my platform to say what I want to say, how I want to say it. It's a chronicle of my life. How could I ever not blog?
"It’s all good to be the reader, but it’s way better to be the creator; editor. It’s just fresher." - Danyel Smith for Rookie Mag
The new FreshJess.com hopefully makes it easier to see all of these stories I want to share with you - past, present and future. I'm totally re-energized about blogging now that I'm all settled here, and I can't wait to flex these writing muscles like I used to back in the '99 and the '00 (or in 2008 when I was a doe-eyed blogging newb!)
Please take a look around and let me know what you think! Enjoy!