About a month ago, I went to New York City to visit my friend Emma for the weekend. I had some American Airlines miles that were about to expire, and combined with the Alaskan Miles I racked up when I converted my Virgin miles over, I was able to swing a round-trip ticket for free.
Usually when I return home from a weekend in NYC, I count my lucky stars that I don’t live there. I appreciate what a great place it is to visit and explore—and I loved the summer I spent there—but I’m always exhausted by the time I leave and excited to get back to the life I’ve built in Arlington, where daily tasks like grocery shopping and laundry require less friction.
Despite the fact that LGA makes me so thankful that DCA is my “home” airport—no, seriously, you guys have no idea how thankful I am that I live a $12 Uber ride away from a clean and modern airport—as I was sitting at the gate to catch my flight home, for the first time in my adult life, I wished I lived in New York City. Not only did I have the best weekend catching up with friends from college and high school, the energy of the city was so contagious—there’s always something to do, something new to see. And despite it being cold and windy, I loved being out and walking around the Upper East Side and Central Park. As my Uber driver dropped me off in my slightly suburban neighborhood, I couldn’t help but wonder about what could be in another life in NY, NY.
I alluded to it some in this Instagram post, but since returning home from New York City a month ago, I’ve really been struggling with the fact that my life feels really stagnant. Most days, I feel like I’m on cruise control—work, workout, eat a $12 salad for dinner, rinse and repeat. As such, I started to seriously think about what would help me shake the stagnation—whether I wanted to move to New York, move into DC proper when my lease is up, sell all my belongings and spend the summer in Europe having an Eat, Pray, Love moment. (Don’t worry, I love my new green lacquer dresser too much to do the latter—it’ll be on the blog this Friday!)
I still don’t really know what my next play is, but in the interim, I’ve really been trying to make an effort to get out and explore DC more, both after work and on the weekends to try to replicate what was so magical about that weekend in my own city. And it’s been so fun to work through my DC to do list with the same zest I had when I moved here at 22. (I shared some recent restaurant ventures here.) I also think the warmer weather on the horizon has brightened things up for me—there’s nothing worse than a 40-degree April day.
A young man named Justin Bieber once told me (rapped to me?) that the grass isn’t greener on the other side, it’s green where you water it. When I think about this blog, it’s still one area of my life that doesn’t feel stagnant—and I’m so glad I’ve spent time watering it over the last four years.
When I think back on my daily life in 2014, it’s a little blurry. Time has faded any rough edges, and all I have left is a nostalgic view of my life in my first “real” apartment trying to navigate the demands of adulthood for the first time—working a 9-5 job, paying bills, dealing with non-college-bar-rail-drinks pricing. Funnily enough, I miss the simplicity of those days. The stakes didn’t seem as high as they do now. (Eight-year blog anniversary me is laughing.)
What I do remember more clearly about my life four years was that I was really excited about starting a blog. I spent all my free time reading blogs, following my favorite bloggers on social media, and trying to convince my friends to read the same blogs so I had people to talk about blogging with. I finally decided I should just start one myself—and I’m so glad I did. I kept it a secret for a few months—I think the only person I told was my sister—and posted about it on my Instagram once I had a few months of content built up.
Sometimes I forget how far I’ve come since then. My fourth year of blogging has brought me things I couldn’t have even dreamed up back then—trips to the Greenbrier and the Jefferson Hotel, deepened friendships with gals I literally met on the Internet, opportunities to practice photography and writing regularly, and invites to fun events and openings in DC that make me feel more connected to my city.
When I think about what my life would look like without my blog, it’s almost unimaginable. A Touch of Teal has given me more opportunities, more sense of purpose, and greater goals to work towards than anything else in my life. Thank you for all the support and following along—I can’t wait to see what the next year holds! x
*** SHOP THIS POST ***
Mi Golondrina Arroyo de Flores Blouse
Old Navy Mid-Rise Rockstar Super Skinny Jeans
Steve Madden Gladiator Sandals—similar here
J Crew Factory Gold Link Bracelet
Madewell Prague Satchel
BP Mirrored Sunglasses
Baublebar Mya Drop Earrings
Photos by Michelle Preau