A Day In The Life

This post is a little different… but I get asked from time to time what my typical day looks like, and I thought it would be fun to write a post about “a day in the life.”

Now, don’t go expecting anything exciting or glamorous.

My job has some cool perks, but at the end of the day, it’s a just job. There are parts I love and parts I hate, there is stress and there are deadlines, but I also get to shop and call it research, and sometimes I get to hang out with Alison and shoot pictures of my daily activities!

Which brings us to today’s post…

Alison was here on Monday to shoot for a brand collab I have coming up, so we decided to take pictures for this post.

Every day is a little bit different, so there is no “typical day” really, but they all start out the same way.

I always get up before the rest of the family — between 5 and 6AM. After I wash up, I go right downstairs and make my first cup of coffee. (Love my Nespresso!)

Then I usually go into the living room and have my devotions. I don’t know why I go to the living room, but I always do. I did at my last house too. I guess it feels set apart from the rest of the house. There is no TV, no computer — no distractions.

After that, I go into my office and start working.

Of course, I’m still in my pajamas at that time of day, but I grabbed this picture from last year. (My office isn’t nearly as big as it looks here!)

I take a break to get my daughter on the bus around 6:45, and then I’m back at work until I need to go somewhere.

There are days that I hardly leave my desk to eat, and others when I’m out of the house for most of the day, but I always put in a few hours of work before I go anywhere.

I’d love to say that exercise is part of my daily routine, but it’s more like 3 or 4 days a week right now. Hopefully when the weather warms up, it will be more than that.

Running is my favorite activity, but these days I’ve switched to walking until I can get this hip issue figured out. I also work out with a trainer 2X a week, so on those days, I go to her house.

After I exercise, I get ready for the day.

I try to get dressed in street clothes every day, even if I’m not going anywhere.

I’m laughing at this picture of me picking out what to wear… since I’m already dressed. OOOPS! We should have shot this while I was in my robe or pajamas. 😂

Once I’m dressed, I always take a mirror selfie before I go downstairs.

I had no idea I put my one foot so far in front of the other… seeing my rear view taking this shot is rather enlightening!

Here’s an outtake for you… haha!

On photo shoot days, I’m usually up and out early. If we’re shooting on location, I load everything into my car.

This picture only shows a fraction of the amount of stuff I usually bring to a shoot. I rarely make it to the car in one trip.

I try to have everything steamed and grouped on my hanging rack ahead of time, but that rarely happens. I’m usually scrambling to put outfits together at the last minute.

It was waaaay too cold to shoot on location on Monday, so we did what we could inside my house, and then stepped outside for a few outdoor shots.

Truth be told, photo shoots are my least favorite part of my job.

It’s super awkward to be taking fashion shots in public locations, and I’m either freezing or roasting.

Plus, all the clothes and shoes and accessories to pack up and then put away when I get back… ugh!!!

But every job has its upsides and its downsides, and happily, I only have to do a few photo shoots each month.

On the positive side, working with Alison has made photo shoots a lot more fun, and easier too. She scouts out the best locations and backdrops for my outfits and has a lot of ideas as far as posing and staging the pictures.

She usually gets the proofs back to me the day of our shoot, and I pick the ones I want her to retouch. She retouches and sends them back to me, usually within 24 hours, or even sooner if I have a deadline. She’s been a life saver as my job has gotten more demanding over the past few years, and she has never once canceled for being sick or having a sick kid. She’s amazingly dependable, and I can’t imagine doing this job without her.

Paul is still a great backup cameraman when I need him, though. God bless Instagram husbands everywhere!

If I don’t have an appointment or a photo shoot or a reason to run to the mall during the day, I’m at home working at the computer.

Writing blog posts and responding to comments is by far and away my favorite part of my job. I love the days when I can just sit here and write all day long. I spend way more time than I probably should editing and tweaking my writing, but that’s what I enjoy most. And of course, interacting with you all!

Besides writing blog posts, there are contracts to negotiate, emails to answer, comments to respond to, my newsletter to produce each day, technical issues to troubleshoot, images to design, photos to edit (I edit all my mirror selfies in Lightroom), analytics to ponder, blog posts to plan, topics to research, and products to select for sponsored campaigns. (Believe it or not, that task can take several hours!)

Actually, the steps that go into a sponsored campaign could be a post in and of itself!

And of course, there are all the tasks involved in being self-employed. I finally hired an accountant and a bookkeeper because I couldn’t keep up, and our taxes were getting more and more complex.

Then there’s Pinterest, my Facebook Page (which I neglect horribly), my Facebook Group (which is so much fun!), and of course Instagram and Instagram Stories…

If I’m not at my desk, I’m usually on my phone. For every Instagram post, I have to generate the ShopStyle widgets and link up all the clothes I’m wearing, and half the time I forget to check the box to link it to my Shop My Feed page.

When I want to share an outfit or try-on to my Story, I have to look up all the links to plug in for the swipe-ups, and if it’s for a brand collab, I have to type out the appropriate hashtags on each post. If I make a typo on anything sponsored, or if I post the wrong link, I have to delete and redo.

It may sound silly, but it’s very time consuming. Instagram is probably my least favorite part of the job — aside from the photo shoots.

And then there are all the boxes… I come home almost every day to find a stack of boxes by my back door. Of course, I have to open them all and try everything on.

Trying on clothes is a huge time suck, and it makes a gigantic mess. That’s another part of my job that I’m not fond of, but I’ve gotten better about having a system and keeping things organized.

Rather than trying things on as they come in, I try to save them up and do them all in one afternoon. Then I take all the returns back downstairs to my office, and stack them neatly in one of those foldable bins on my bookshelf until I have time to get to that task.

Anything I’m going to use for a photoshoot and items I’m not sure I’m keeping go on the hanging rack in my bedroom. And I put away anything I’m keeping, along with all the things I drug out of my closet to create various outfits.

I finally hired a college-age girl to come in and help with returns, and that’s taken a huge weight off my shoulders. I was letting things pile up for far too long because I dreaded the task.

Now, Kate comes in three or four times a month, and we bang it out in a couple of hours. She also takes all the boxes to the post office, which allows me more time to take care of the tasks that only I can do.

Some days I do live chats, and I set up my phone inside this ring light.

Speaking of which, I love interacting with you guys in various ways, and I’m excited to bring back my Facebook Lives for 2020!

I did one on Tuesday, as a matter of fact. I just hopped on spontaneously because I saw it on my calendar, and I happened to be home at that time and wanted to share about my microblading appointment. (You can watch the replay HERE.)

I’m going to do my best to go live every Tuesday at 1PM EST. Sometimes I have appointments that get in the way, but I put my Lives on my calendar, and I’ll try to protect that time slot.

If you want to join me, be sure you’re following my Facebook Page. I do them on my Page, rather than in my Group, because it’s more public and more people can see it there. I do try to remember to give a quick heads-up in the group before going live, though.

In the afternoons, I often have to chauffeur kids around to appointments and lessons, but otherwise, I pretty much work every weekday from the time I wake up until it’s time to make dinner.

That’s when I shut it down. I pretty much never come back to my office after dinner.

I will check my phone, but mostly just scrolling social media without the pressure of work, and I enjoy that.

Most nights, we have dinner as a family, and we usually hang out in the family room and watch TV afterwards. This is, hands-down, my favorite part of the day.

My 14-year-old and I like to watch Survivor, American Idol, and DWTS during their seasons. We also like This Is Us. Paul and I like The Crown, and we were watching Victoria. I hope it comes back! When David’s around, we always watch Jeopardy, and if there’s a Philly sports game on, that trumps all.

If there’s nothing on TV, I read something on my Kindle. The dog usually ends up curled up next to me, which is pretty much the best thing ever, now that my kids are too big to ever want to be this close to me.

Around 8:30 or 9:00, I head upstairs to get ready for bed. I know, I’m a grannie!

If I haven’t done it already, I take off my makeup and apply all the lotions and potions. I have quite an extensive nighttime routine these days. #thisis47

Once that’s all taken care of, I lay in bed and read or look at my phone for a little while before falling asleep. Then I wake up the next morning and start all over again!

Or, more likely, I wake up a few times in the night, check the time on my phone, get a sip of water, and wait for 5AM to roll around so I can justify getting up. Haha!

I don’t know if it’s due to perimenopause or my newfound IF lifestyle, but I need to remedy this situation ASAP. I’ve always been a great sleeper, and I can’t stand waking up all night long.

I’ve actually been trying to cut out the phone usage right before bed because I’m sure that doesn’t help, and I just bought a canister of this magnesium powder. I’m trying to remember to drink a glass every night before I close my eating window.

I don’t love the flavor, though, so I’m having a hard time being consistent. Maybe I should give up and try a pill.

Anyway, if you have any other helpful tips, feel free to let me know!

I hope you enjoyed this post. I’m sure I forgot something, but it pretty much covers it. As always, I’m happy to answer any questions in the comments.

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photos: Alison Cornell