• Elephant_Hook_P1030922

    Elephant_Hook_P1030922

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  • pottery barn teen fall 2013

    pottery barn teen fall 2013

  • L

    Fall Goal #1: To Rest

    10.03.2013 / LIFE

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    This fall, I’ve written down a few goals for myself (I can’t wait to share them here!) – one of which has been to spruce up my bedroom. Recently, I received a few finds from my favorite recent collaboration: Emily & Meritt for PBteen (by the way – my best kept secret for affordable decorating is to never discount a children or teen store when searching for unique decor!) and the dash of pattern and positivity and quirk was just what I needed to lure me into the quiet more often than not. I’ve been organizing jewelry onto hooks and clearing books from my nightstand and, gosh, there’s just something about fresh, new clean sheets, you know? So far, it’s working wonders to have a retreat that feels inviting but inspiring, and I’ve found myself heading to bed earlier and earlier knowing that a peaceful, uncluttered haven awaits me. Because here’s the thing:

    pottery barn teen fall 2013

    This fall has been one of the busiest seasons yet. And it’s weird, because from the outside, my life looks very not-busy-at-all. I wake up at 7ish, make breakfast for Bee and play with her uninterrupted, reading books and throwing dance parties and pulling toilet paper off every roll in the house. It’s one of my favorite parts of my day – so calm and peaceful and morning-like with no technology pings or alarms or reminders to pull us from the moment. And then I head to my local coffee shop at 10 to sit down in a corner of the world with a massive mug and a matching to do list. I nearly always pack up by 5-6 and bring home some take-out (thank you, Chipotle, for sustaining the Loechner family), settling in for a night of dinner and baths and story time, and then, after Bee goes to bed, it’s time for more work. And that’s when things get hairy.

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    I used to be good at this – going to bed at a decent hour. I was always tucked in by 11 or so, usually sooner. And then, I launched this beautiful beast, and suddenly the world seemed like it needed everything from me, all at once. And I offered it, at the expense of my sanity and sleep. I’ve had no less than three semi-nervous breakdowns this weekend, many of which arrived upon the realization that I have zero clean clothes and [seemingly] zero time to wash them. This says a lot, because friends, I have a lot of clothes. It was as if the pile of dirty laundry signaled everything that had taken a back seat in my personal life – family visits and nephews’ soccer games and just, life. I’ve been moving through life with a work filter for the past month, throwing spare change into the piggy bank of productivity when I should have spent it on something more valuable. Family, friends, moments.

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    And of course that’s not a sustainable course of action. I know this. My heart knows it, and my gut knows it, which is why I get a ping of anxiety when a new email rushes in and it’s an opportunity I know I should accept, but know that I shouldn’t. Should-but-shouldn’t is the soundtrack playing in my head, looping unnecessary stress and playing sad songs no one wants to hear. So this month, my new goal is this: rest and rejuvenation. It seems fitting that I always seem to throw myself into the fire during fall – the bright, bold colors are ablaze and eventually give way to the calm of winter. But this year, I don’t want to wait for the white space that snow provides. I want to create it myself.

    Here’s to rest and white and clean sheets and self-care. Here’s to fall goals, friends.

    Image Credits: My dear husband

    p.s. Special thanks to PB Teen for helping me create an inspired haven! Products featured: The Fantastic Fringe Garland, The Bunny Alarm Clock, The Metallic Dottie Bedding, The Animal Wall Hooks

    • Boo! Looks like they only carry the duvet cover in twin and queen :/

      love it so much though!

      • The queen duvet cover fits nicely on our king-sized bed, actually!

    • A friend recently told me, “to say ‘yes’ to something means saying ‘no’ to 10 other things.” It struck me. My ‘yeses’ better be worth it. Every so often, we have to hit the reset button, keep our drive in check, and prioritize. I really enjoyed your reflection, Erin. I’ve realized balance may not exist, but pacing does. So as I continue to challenge myself, it try to enjoy the process and pace myself.

      Cheers, Erin

      • AMEN to pacing over balance – that’s an excellent distinction. Thank you for sharing, sweet Erin!

    • This is perfect, Erin… thank you so much for sharing! I think we all struggle with taking the right amount of time for ourselves… and I love that you’re making your little oasis a part of the package! Something about having a space to relax in makes such a difference (I know if my space is all in disarray it’s all I can think about…). I love when you share like this. :) Hope you enjoy plenty of rest and relaxation this fall!

      • Thank you sweet Laicie – I couldn’t agree more. It’s tough relaxing in a space that isn’t conducive to doing so!

    • It’s kinda funny (and maybe a little crazy-sounding), but I have such faith in you, even knowing you very little. I know that you’ll make your way through this busy season and strike the balance that you’re looking for. The world demands so much from people who have so much to give, and you’re no exception. :) Thank you for inspiring us all.

      • Oh Chelsea, you are such an encourager! Thank you for your support and kindness – I’m taking small steps to strike that balance and am feeling good and hopeful and optimistic. (Your encouragement helps, too – thank you, sweet friend!)

    • Wow. This is timely. I’m glad I’m not alone! Ha! I feel exactly the same way. I’ve got all these opportunities being placed on my lap and I want to say “yes!” to everything because I’m afraid I’ll miss out or won’t be considered next time around if I don’t. But, the moment came last week. Oh yes. The moment I wrote someone back and said “Thanks. But, no thanks.” It felt goooood actually! : ) Need to scale back. Way back. Especially with little ones in the mix. My baby girl is 21 months. These are just the most precious months, aren’t they? And I don’t want to miss a beat!! So, I totally relate to what you’re feeling!

    • I’m in a very similar place. It’s hard: There’s so much I want to do! I want to do it all! But when I try to do it all, I end up not being able to do any. Love the idea of not waiting for the white space of winter. We need white space in our time for the same reasons we need it on the page: So we can more clearly see the power of what the space borders. Wishing you luck in your endeavor to rest.

      • Thank you, sweet Rita – I wish you the same! It’s a constant struggle, this back and forth and much and little, isn’t it?

    • I’ve cut back a lot and funnily enough, I feel like I’m getting more done. Well, it’s more of what I’d like to get done. More creating, more photography. More family time.

      When the model for being an artist is 24/7 creating, it’s a challenge to make a life that is an “and” like of life rather than an “either/or”. Creating AND family. Not creating OR family.

      But it’s all about intent and choices. That makes all the difference.

      • AMEN. I’ve always found that when I slow down, my productivity truly increases. It’s like my mind is running on all cylinders and I’m not distracted or frenzied – there’s a level of focus that’s unmatched when things get harried. And then I get in a flow and my brain thinks, “hey – let’s make ourselves busy to shake things up!”

        ;)

    • This summer I gave myself a break from being obligated to do things “for work.” This meant I was no longer HAD to blog five days a week or develop new products or services to launch. Giving myself that permission to say no to the “have tos” actually increased my creativity and I came up with so many new ideas. I just read an article on 99u that you might like about organizing your to-do list by emotion. Let me know what you think. xoxo

      http://99u.com/workbook/18750/introducing-the-to-do-list-organized-by-emotion

      • AMEN, amen, amen, amen. I’m so good at setting these boundaries for myself, but now that I have a team, I’m still trying to navigate how to be a great leader and a team player and still get our content edited and up on the site, you know? I feel like I’m striking a balance (almost!) but it’s been an incredible learning curve.

        CAN’T WAIT to read this article, btw, thank you!

    • Your post really hit the nail on the head. And I felt it viscerally because I’m in the same boat, except I get up at 5:30 and work until about 10pm. I write cookbooks for a living, but that’s not enough to sustain us at the moment, and so I took on part time PR work which is 30 hours a week. Make a long story short: my work day is about 16 hours.. which means i have 8 hours to: eat, sleep, play, read, etc. It’s been months of this and I’ve been having a meltdown nearly nightly, if not several times a day. It’s not sustainable and while I need to suck it up for another month or so, I am trying to figure out how to balance it all. I hope you get a moment to find that balance – freelancing is so funny like that: feast or famine and you feel like god forbid you turn down ONE offer because who knows, there might be a dry spell in the future. Thanks so much for writing this – it’s nice to know I’m not alone in this stress vortex… I hope that you get a well deserved break soon.

      • Oh love – I feel for you! I’m so far from working 16 hour days at the moment, but I’ve been there and it is HARD. Sending good vibes for balance soon, however that happens. Big hugs,
        e.

    • So how I feel like decorating the bedroom is so much more difficult than the rest of the house. I love all of these inspirations.

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