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I somehow stumbled upon my old Livejournal yesterday. Did you have one? For me, the Livejournal trend started in high school, maybe junior year? I remember this girl wrote a Livejournal post naming all the “popular” kids in our grade and calling them out for various oddities. (Ex: Jane Smith needs to keep her fingers out of the cheese at the cafeteria salad bar) Yeah. She went there. The salad bar. Aw shit.

From then on everyone was all about Livejournal (and I’m pretty sure that one girl’s senior year was made a living hell). It’s pretty crazy to go back and read it.  I posted in mine from high school spring break, to college, to my summer internship in NY, to college graduation, and even some after…

There is actually a lot of emotion behind a lot of the posts (mixed in with the occasional rant, ex: “OMG gas went up to $1.95, this is bullshit!”) and it completely brings me back to those memories and feelings. Some of it is borderline embarrassing. I was such a young, irrational, little punk.

What I noticed so much, beyond the stories, was my writing style. It was random, sometimes rambling. But it was so raw and honest. It made me think of this blog and how much I struggle writing it. Maybe it has to do with having an audience beyond my “real life” friends, but often times writing this blog is hard for me. I erase and retype and second-guess.

What I also see though, in my Livejournal, is me. The same me. Funny. Swearing. (Holy swearing, tons of swearing.) Emotional. Scared. Dreaming. Inspired. I’m still all those things. But I do wish I still had the balls to be that girl who said what she was thinking (good or bad) and didn’t care what people thought of it.

Maybe this ties in with the fact that I feel like this blog has been lost lately. I haven’t felt inspired to write here and maybe that’s because I don’t know where this space is headed.

Maybe the issue is lack of topic ideas. I feel like, if I’m given a topic, boom, I’ll tell you a story. Stories I can do. But talking about day-to-day is hard for me because I question if people are interested. I don’t go into detail, I keep it short.

Maybe it’s growing pains. I have seen this a lot recently. Small businesses and blogs are changing, evolving. The owners are not the same people they were when they first started out. It’s a ballsy move on their part but one I appreciate because they are being true to themselves.

Not that I am a new person than I was a couple years ago.
But something is just lacking here.

I’m going to work on this whole blog thing. I don’t know what or how or when, exactly. I’m still figuring it out. But I’m going to work on it.

Rambling today aren’t I?

Join the discussion 12 Comments

  • Franchesca says:

    Oh it’s rambling but I like it. I can SO relate. I started blogging for a completely different reason than I blog now. And now my blog is just… blah. I don’t know. I feel ya. I am starting over, something new. Still not sure how to tie in everything, or if I even should. But I totally agree that it’s all growing pains, and it isn’t pleasant but I think the end result will be something amazing. Either way, I always enjoy what you write 🙂

  • designwithj9 says:

    Julie Ann-I struggle with what to write about too. I feel like my blog is ever evolving. I have been doing a 90% business related to 10% personal rambling (as you put it) ratio. Do people really want to know what goes on in my head? Will they still want to do business with me when they find out? I am not sure if I will ever know, but it keeps life interesting along the way.


  • BCshutterbug says:

    Livejournal… yea, i remember that (although when it was a thing I was already out of school XD lol) I remember looking mine up a little while back and it still had a Canucks (hockey) themed layout and I believe a huge rant about hockey on the most recent post lol. That’s basically what I was using it for in the end. And probably a lot of anime talk. No ‘real life’ friends except one ever read it. I still suck at blogging but I’m trying lol. I’m using more as an outlet to talk about things that I don’t have friends to talk to about and sharing photos than anything else.
    I think you do a great job at blogging. I’m not sure if it’s just my own lack of self confidence in my own writing, but I think you write your thoughts out much better than I do! 🙂 I enjoy reading what you have to share (especially business-wise).

  • I remember Livejournal. I had one. The things we thought that were so important back then…if we only knew.

  • Christine says:

    JA, not sure if you are open to blog suggestions, but I would love to hear more about how you decided to go into business for yourself. Was it an easy move or were you scared to death? Something like the “Quit Your Day Job” blog on etsy. I love that shit. To be honest, I tend to follow blogs of hand-made artisans, because I am completely jealous of your “balls” to just do it for yourself. I haven’t been able to work up the nerve or give myself a deadline on when it can happen, so I’d love to hear what your process was, what you do about health insurance, and if your business sustains you (I assume yes, or else you wouldn’t do it). What are the things you have learned along the way about starting a hand-made business that would have saved you a lot of trouble/fear/etc?

  • I don’t think you’re rambling, you’re honest.

    I once lost a friendship because I wrote a story about the friend who wasn’t doing anything that weird and I thought it was funny. And it bothered me for a long time and I didn’t know what to do about it. She didn’t even talk to me about it, just started talking shit to mutual friends about how much I sucked (this was several years ago, mind you). I don’t know where I’m going with this. My point when I started writing was that I’d write that story about her all over again. It was honest and funny and not character assassinating. Your blog is great. Blogs grow and change with their owners. You’re hilarious. Trust that.

  • gina says:

    I feel the SAME way about my blog. I totally hold back. Right now I do have ideas but not a lot of time to post and when I do have the time, I just don’t have the motivation. I keep saying to myself that I am going to change this but then a new busy week pops up and I realize on thursday that I haven’t blogged in a week….like this week!

  • You’re such a funny lady and I get super excited when I see that you’ve blogged, tweeted, instagrammed something (is instagrammed a verb yet?). I miss hearing your true voice, I love the personal posts and I love following your doings. Please don’t stop! Otherwise, where else would I get my JAA fix? 🙂

  • clem says:

    I completely get you. On all of these things! It’s tough sometimes to stay on top of blogging. And this also reminds me to look through my old accounts and remove all traces of my teen angst from the interweb. But on the writing front, I totally understand that nostalgic feeling that happens when re reading old writing. Even looking through old emails gives me the heebie jeebies, when I realize that so much of who I grew up into is still speaking up in my old writing voice from ten years ago. Its eerie for sure. Definitely causes a lot of reflection. But often only good will come from that! 🙂

  • Alice says:

    LOL, love the random bit about gas prices… you’d totally freak out if you lived here, where a gallon is like almost 8 dollars or even more in some countries 🙂

    Anyway, back to the topic, … I wish I had any smart advice, but I really think you should just take your time, not pressure yourself and do what feels right. Which is hard because you have (we all do) all these voices in your head telling you what you should do, or what others are doing, and how the stats are affected, etc. But if you forget about all that and just write about whatever you enjoy, you should be fine. And blogs change just as our interests change, or our lives change…

    I’m sure you’ll figure it out 🙂


  • Oh man, I had xanga but I don’t even want to imagine what it says or looks like. Young, irrational, punk to say the least I’m sure. And if you’re searching for what to write about I’d say whatever comes naturally. You’ve built up such a strong following, I’m sure we’d keep following if you posted more personal stuff or business updates. At least I would anyway.


  • I totally feel ya. I’ve totally lost the blog bug lately. In fact in the past year I’ve probably only truly blogged once a month. It hurts me because I actually really do dig the writing thing (in fact it’s what I’m trying desperately to turn into a paying career) but for some reason; I reach that open window and just think, “who is really listening and wants to hear this right now?”

    Thank you for the LiveJournal reminder. I should try and hack into mine. I had so many great thoughts in there (and my blog on MySpace as well surprisingly) and some also that I’m sure would be funny to read again. There’s so much I processed during my writing at that time and I may need a little perspective of that time.

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