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Coffee Talk 01.03.21 + State of the Blog Address

Coffee Talk

Yay, the first Coffee Talk of 2021! It’s weird typing those numbers — my fingers aren’t used to it yet.

For the past few years, I wrote my State of the Blog Address at the end of my Year In Review, but that post was sooooo long this year. So instead, I decided to share my State of the Blog Address in lieu of a Coffee Talk today.

Last year I also did a post I called New Year’s Eve Thoughts… now that was fun to re-read. All those plans! The only thing I can think of to say about that is, Bless her heart… 

I mean, no one could have imagined what 2020 had in store, but I was cracking up reading how our Paris trip in May would make up for our canceled Austin trip in 2019… and how I was moving to a 6-day posting schedule.

(I’m not sure when I fell off that wagon, but I don’t recall it lasting very long!)

But I also love reading about how I was struggling with my weight and planning to hit IF hard in January, because that actually did work out pretty well.

I also talked about my upcoming kitchen remodel, and that timing worked out perfectly. We finished up right before everything shut down in mid-March, and I’ve been able to enjoy my beautiful, updated kitchen during all this time at home.

The other thing I said in that post was that I wanted to focus more on quality over quantity in 2020, and be more true to myself in the brands I style and the retailers I work with. I feel like I’ve done that, and it’s been fairly well received.

I realize I’m not everyone’s cup of tea, but if I’ve learned anything over my 15 years of blogging, it’s that I can’t be all things to all people. Believe me, I’ve tried!

All I know to do is stay true to myself, and the people who relate to me will stick around, and the rest will eventually lose interest and find somewhere else to hang out. That’s just the nature of the space, and I’m okay with that.

Looking Ahead to 2021

As for 2021, I’m once again going to start out by taking Saturdays off from posting to the blog. We’ll have to see how long that lasts…

But otherwise, I’m not planning any major changes to my content or posting schedule this year.

Email Newsletter Updates

Even when I don’t have a new blog post on Saturdays, I will still send out my Weekly Digest email newsletter with a recap of the week’s posts and the weekend sale roundup. (If you’re signed up for the New Daily Posts, you also get the Weekly Digest, as that one goes to all subscribers.)

If you aren’t signed up for any of my emails, you can do that HERE.

Yesterday I sent out my first Weekly Digest email of the new year, and I played around with my format a bit. You’ll have to let me know what you think.

I replaced my usual Weekend Sale Roundup section with Saturday Steals, and I tried to make it more tightly curated with only the very best sales, along with specific product picks. And I added This Week’s Top Sellers to the Weekly Digest as well. (I usually include that in Sunday’s email.)

The idea behind that was to spend less time on the Sunday email and to keep it more personal with just a link to my Coffee Talk post. Plus, it just seems like This Week’s Top Sellers belongs in a weekly recap.

The only thing about that is, it makes that Saturday email really long. Is it too much?

I could do a graphic for This Week’s Top Sellers instead of individual pictures, but I always figure people prefer to see me wearing the items if at all possible.

Blog Redesign!

Other than that, the only major change coming in 2021 is a big blog redesign. It will be a lot more sophisticated than what I have now, with some extra features and a much better Shop.

I’ve sorely neglected my Shop pages over the last few months, so I just took the link off my menu bar. Hopefully with Amy’s help, I can keep the new one more up to date.

The new site should roll out sometime this month, and I’m super excited about that! I know that too much change can be frustrating, so I did my best to keep the design simple and easy to use. I can’t wait to see how you like it.

More of the Same Great Content!

As for blog content, I’m planning more 5 Ways to Wear posts, so let me know if you have any requests for items, trends, or colors you’d like me to style multiple ways. I’d like to do at least one of those a month.

I also plan to do the popular Old Outfits Updated posts seasonally, and I’m working on a post on What’s In and What’s Out for 2021.

Regular features like What I Wore Lately and my Try-On Hauls will continue, as they’re always popular. I can’t promise to do both every week, but there will definitely be a few each month.

Then there are all the seasonal one-off posts that I like to update and republish each year. As I wrote my end of year recaps, I made notes about which posts did really well, and I put them on my 2021 editorial calendar so I can remember to update them and republish at the optimum time.

I’m trying to get better about planning, but that will never really be my strong suit. #iyamwhatiyam

Overall, I’m happy with the content I’ve produced this year — especially considering everything we’ve been going through as a country… and you know, a certain global pandemic that shall not be named.

I just need to get more efficient and figure out what else I can delegate so I’m not overextending myself, and I’d really like to be in a place where my posts are written and scheduled the night before, so I can get my daily emails out by 8AM. I used to do that, and I’m not sure why I can’t seem to get back into that rhythm.

All that to say, not much will change with blog content this year, but I’m always open to ideas and suggestions!

In Conclusion

I’m not one to make New Year’s resolutions or choose a word of the year, and I’m not even making many plans for 2021 at this point.

But I do want to be more intentional with my time, continue to prioritize exercise, and focus on delegating more and being more efficient with my work hours.

If we get to go to Paris in May, great! But I’m not counting on it. (We weren’t able to get a refund on our apartment rental, so we just rescheduled for this May in hopes that things will be better by then.)

I’d love to think that by summertime, masks and social distancing are a thing of the past, but at this point, I’m taking it one day at a time.

I’m just thankful that all of my people are healthy and happy and under one roof, and that I have this supportive community of women online to share our joys and trials.

Once again, I want to thank you for being here. From the bottom of my heart, thank you for sticking around during this insanely trying year. I could not do what I do without you.

The pace of this job can be overwhelming, but sometimes I have to pinch myself to believe that I actually get to do this for a living. I’m so grateful for the community we’ve built here.

I hope you have a restful and very blessed Sunday!

Join the Conversation

63 thoughts on “Coffee Talk 01.03.21 + State of the Blog Address

  1. I’m glad you’re not planning to change much. In 2020 you moved from my top three favorite blogs to my very favorite. I love your what I wore blogs, your coffee talk, your faith and how real you are. Thankful for you and your blog!

  2. I love it all, Jo-Lynne! I love your style, your down to earth transparency, I love when you include a photo of you wearing the items, I’m a size or two bigger so I take your size and go up one or two, I love your try on hauls, your stories of your family and your health journey and all of it. Just like having coffee with a friend. And I hope 2021 is simply wonderful for you and your family!

  3. Thank You Jo-Lynne for staying real. Your blog is the best I have followed and I will continue to follow. In this crazy world I am glad for the few minutes I take out of my day to spend with you. It’s like sitting in a comfy chair sipping my favorite coffee and talking to a dear friend.

  4. Thanks for the state of the blog. I love your Sunday coffee talk…maybe my favorite post of the week. 
    I never commented on your year in review but I laughed out loud about your son not smiling and his birthday picture. I just sent my 19 year old back to the US yesterday to go back to university. 😭 Why does this age not like to smile? 🤣 Anyway, know you’re not alone…same serious faces, different household. 
    It’s been a hard 9+ months for him here in Portugal with us when it’s not where he wanted to be. But, these trying times strengthen us and now I’m thrilled that he’s back where he wants to be. 🙏
    Have a blessed day!

  5. I love your blog, you inspire me in so many areas of my life! I’m riding along, no matter what you change. God bless you and your business!

  6. Happy New Year! Here’s hoping that 2021 will be a much better year for all of us. Thank you so much for your wonderful blog and all of the work you do each day. I look forward to your emails and truly enjoy the content you put out. Looking forward to everything coming from you in 2021!

  7. “Quality over quantity” is my belief also. When I was a poor young adult I was shopping with a friend and we concluded this. Over thirty years later I still feel that way and I am still not rich. Too many times I bought things because they were cheap and ended up disappointed after washing or wearing once. I want my clothing to feel good.

    Maybe that is why you are my favorite fashion blogger.

    Happy New Year.

    1. I laughed when you said, “I want my clothing to feel good.” That’s really what it comes down to for me. I’m all about the comfort, and that’s really what sets quality pieces apart from the rest.

  8. Hi Jo-Lynne, I love your blog posts, especially the Coffee Talks, Nsale, gift lists, and Try On Hauls. My absolute favorites were the White Tshirt Intensive, Sneaker Intensive and your heartfelt #BLM post. You rock!!!!!

    I followed many bloggers beginning in 2019 but by Q42020 I curated to only 3, and yours is the fave of faves.

  9. I enjoy your blog so much! I appreciate your focus on quality-I’d rather see fewer things of higher quality than 20 cheap sweaters that look awful IRL.

    Also, I’d love to see a Spring/Summer shoe trend post when we get out of our slippers?  For me, killer sneakers are here to say, but really high heels, not so much!
    Beth

    1. Yes, I think the sneaker trend is here to stay for a while! I just *gulp* gave in and splurged on Golden Goose. They haven’t arrived yet, so I may decide not to keep, but I realized that I wear my sneakers more than any other type of shoe, and I don’t see that changing this spring.

  10. I always enjoy your coffee talk and posts! So happy to hear not too much is changing. I really look forward to seeing what’s in store for this year.! Will you and Cyndi be doing your 21 days of fashion again? 

    1. We haven’t discussed it yet. Spring is always a popular one, so I’d be open to that, although our weather can be really dreadful in March. It’s always my least favorite season for photo shoots, so I kind of didn’t mind skipping last year. 🙂 I’ll see what Cyndi is thinking.

  11. I love your blog! While I follow other bloggers, you are the one I follow most closely because your style and sensibilities align most closely with my own. I have two daughters, 16 and 21, so enjoy when you include your family in the blog too. My daughters love to shop and we have a lot of fun shopping all together. One thought I have is maybe a mom/daughter post. Similar outfits but styled for a teen/young adult vs mom. My goal is  to look classically stylish, not like a teenager but not frumpy either and appropriate for my lifestyle. My daughters skew much more fashion forward and trendy but I’m trying to guide my older daughter in building her post college wardrobe with good basic pieces. I enjoy your posts with lots of pictures so I can see lots of angles and as you can see, I don’t mind your longer posts! Looking forward to the updates for 2021!

  12. Happy New Year, Jo-Lynne! I love your blog and don’t think you need to change a thing other than to give yourself a day or 2 off!! Your blog is 1 of 3 that I read. The other 2 I skim quickly. Yours is the one that I read every word! 

  13. I love your blog Jo-Lynne. Thanks for explaining 2/3 concept and other helpful tips. I look forward to your blog each morning. I appreciate your details   Many blessings to you. 

  14. I think the week’s top sellers are perfect in the Saturday weekly digest. It just makes sense! 

    Yours is an exceptional blog and the first blog email I open, unless I’m short on time and then I save yours to savor. Sounds corny, but true! Thanks and here’s to a great 2021 for you and yours! 

  15. Happy New Year Jo-Lynne!    I look forward to your email every day!  Love it all, especially the extensive reviews on certain items, try on hauls, gift guides, and 5 ways to wear.  I’m looking forward to what’s in and what’s out for 2021.   Also, thank you for the reminder/motivation to work out everyday 🙂  Thanks for all you do.!  

  16. I think my word for 2021 is declutter. Love your blog. You identify with regular people. You are natural and real. I love that.😍

  17. Thanks for your fabulous posts. I truly enjoy reading you daily. But I agree that taking a day off is wise. 

    I’m so looking forward to 5 ways to wear an item & your old outfits updated. I’m hoping to downsize my wardrobe this year & use my great pieces more wisely. By the way, I’m a JJill clothing fan & appreciate those classic looks, but I can roll with jeans & a tee as well. 

    I truly hope you get to go to Paris in May. I know that’s a dream trip for you. I just want to be healthy enough to go on a few road trips this year (no more broken bones or surgeries for me God willing)  

    Have a blessed day. 

  18. Love your 5 ways to wear posts. Curious…if May doesn’t happen for Paris will your rental apartment let you rebook again? I’ve been in April and July but I
    suspect the fall would be nice too. Dont count out the summer, yes it was hot but we were outside until 11 pm each night and it was glorious.

  19. Happy New Year! I have followed you for years although I seldom comment. Today I just want to encourage you in your intent and direction for your blog. I love your focus on quality and classics and how to keep current and on budget. I also love ideas on how to remix what I have since I like to dress everyday but am not necessarily going anywhere. I love that your core values are similar to mine. I know we could be good friends in person. Also thank you for IF information. I started in February last year and have lost 25lbs. So much more I could say but the bottom line is. Thank You! Your blog is obviously a blessing to so many. I’m expectantly believing with you for a better 2021!

  20. Looking forward to another fun and informative year with you and your blog! With my 67th birthday coming tomorrow, I again realize I am almost 20 years older then you, but feel I can wear everything you style! Very classic, clean, and downright pretty!! My daughter, who is 42 also enjoys your blog, so I know you appeal to a wide range of ages. (case in point, we both bought a Halogen cashmere striped sweater, I bought the Vneck, she bought the turtleneck…made us laugh!!)
    My hope is that you can arrange for a little in-person get-together like you did in the summer of ’19. I missed that event at Kendra Scott because I was on vacation, but was hoping for another chance (post-covid and without masks!).
    And, yes, I’d rather see you wearing outfits rather than graphics. And I love your descriptions, so real!
    As for the striped LOFT sweater you highlighted, I bought it last year…thanks for the reminder. I’m planning a day trip to Ocean City tomorrow and may wear that. Very beachy and warm and cozy.

  21. I love seeing you in the clothing. That really helps me to think of what I would like (I am the same size on the bottom, but one size larger on top.) I cannot imagine myself in something when the model is size 0 and 20 years old!
    Love the try-on hauls and old outfits updated. I cannot afford to buy a lot of clothes, so I like to use what I have and buy some new items to make an outfit more contemporary.
    I also really enjoy hearing about your life, your family, your health/fitness. I am much older than you are, but you inspire me to get moving more. You make this real! Thank you!

  22. I really enjoy your posts, I just wish you were my body type! 🥕. Probably my favourite posts are the ones where you take us through trying to get a good outfit to a great outfit. I have taken the 2 AYW classes and start 3rd tomorrow and while I am learning the info, putting it in practice is really hard. It is nice to see an “expert”(my def of someone who has been doing it a long time) still has to do it by trial and error sometimes.  I am a slow to the starting block in fashion, having not really even thought about it for many years so have lots of time to catch up on!  Keep on doing what you do!  

  23. Thank you so much for all that you do! You have taught me so much about quality pieces and cost per wear, and my goal for the year is to pare down what I have and wear what makes me feel good! Capsule wardrobes are not for me (I love fashion and variety too much), but through you I have learned to style classic pieces in so many ways! I enjoy your blog so much, and I’m looking forward to what you have in store for us this year!

  24. I’m happy you are staying true to yourself and not selling Amazon hauls or Kmart. They have their place I suppose but some bloggers seem to be only selling these inexpensive lines now, I’ve stopped following so many this year. 
    I look forward to your 3/5 ways to style an item, what’s in/what’s out for 2021, and your updated reviews. 
    Like you, I haven’t picked a word this year and am not making any plans. I don’t know when we’ll get the vaccine, so I will be patient and know at some point we will travel again. We are blessed with our family and our health and that in itself should make us happy. 

  25. Thanks Jo-Lynne for continuing to inspire us through your fabulous content while keeping it real. I look forward to seeing your posts each day and enjoy your witty commentary. Here’s to hoping that your trip to Paris comes to fruition this year and cheers to a happy, healthy 2021! 
    Denise E.

  26. Happy 2021!! I’m so excited to see the changes/tweaks you make to the blog and content – not that there is anything “wrong” with things the way they are…it’s just nice to have something fresh sometimes. I’m really looking forward to the Old Outfits Updated (that’s so fun!) and What’s In/Out for 2021…how exciting! Thanks for all you do and for being so relatable and genuine. I’m not big into social media because of how fake so many people are – but on the flip side, some people seem to believe that they Need to be so real that it’s actually rude and insulting. One word – unsubscribe. ha ha Nonetheless, I love your blog and content and look forward to your posts! Many blessings for your business!

  27. You’re hands down my favorite blogger because of your detail, style, and being so genuine. I like your ideas for 2021 and look forward to another year. 
    It’s been awhile since you’ve done a try-on haul, and those are probably my favorite. Then again, I end up buying things and I really need to slow that down. I have been trying to trade in my wardrobe for more quality pieces. I did buy the blue and white striped sweater from Loft last year and really like the style and softness but it did start pilling immediately and I can’t wear it out anymore. I have been wearing it at home but I need to retire it. I think I should respect myself enough to only wear clothes in good condition, whether I am staying home that day or not. You have shown by example that comfy clothing can be stylish and in good shape. 

  28. I’m looking forward to the blog redesign, although the one you have is already really great. I found you in the summer from AYW and have happily followed ever since. You have turned out to be something I look forward to each day during a time when there wasn’t much to wake up for or look forward to, so thank you for being here for all of us and for being true to who you are. I think it’s your genuineness that I love the most. Cheers to 2021!

  29. Happy New Year!
    I enjoy all your posts and look forward to them! I would love more about updating outfits, it really helps to see where I should spend my money. I also love when you do try ons and explain what you like and don’t like. The longer the post the better!! Lol

    Your info about IF was also very helpful 
    Thank you for doing what you do, because you do it so well!
    Lisa

  30. I look forward to your posts and glad that you are not changing much. You are very good in critiquing outfits on yourself. 
    The addition I would like to see is in seeking out clothing sites that feature made in USA items. I commend you for not featuring some large stores that sell cheap and fast  fashion and you have upgraded your choices. We all have our budgets and some of us want to spend a bit more on fewer well made items for our basics!
    HappyNew Year and we’re looking forward to a better one.

  31. Those all sound like great ideas, I especially enjoy “5 ways” posts!  I hope you are able to stick to 6 days a week instead of 7!  Unless of course you’re like me and work actually takes your mind off the craziness in the world  in which case go for it!  Idk if y’all are considering it or not, but I really enjoyed having you and Cyndi do your seasonal style series!  Think we all enjoyed the sense of normalcy it provided.  (And with COVID likely lasting into fall/winter of this year, I think we could probably use it again!). Can’t wait to read all your posts in 2021, yours is one of a handful of blogs I read every day!

  32. I’m excited going forward for the changes you’ve planned. I think of you as sort of a mini me! We are so alike, in some ways more so than my daughter who is your age and 3 inches taller and 25 lbs smaller! Like you, I’m not doing resolutions in the traditional sense, but rather to be more consistent in the good habits that I had going before I had a husband underfoot daily since March. Those being getting up and dressed at the same time, sticking to my housekeeping schedule since my help had to quit and getting back to the year long purging and decluttering I started last year. We do have new moving goals now, although Austin is on hold.  My brother who lives in the home we inherited from our mom is moving into his primary residence, and I couldn’t be more excited. After mom passed away we put about $30k into the house — all new kitchen, carpet and luxury vinyl plank flooring, storage units, updated all the landscaping and I’m excited to live there. He’s retiring in April, and we’ve been waiting for this moment! It’s only a 100 mile move so my wardrobe needs will remain unchanged. And I’ll be getting a huge walk in closet instead of a five foot x two foot with bypass doors! Yippee. 

    I so appreciate you, and all your work on the blog and I cherish our long distance friendship. Hope some day to meet in person! 

  33. Aw, you’re my cup of tea…or I should say, cup of coffee! Your blog is great, and like my new Yeti mug, you’re keeping it hot and have amazing staying power. Happy New Year!

  34. Happy New Year! I have been a reader of your blog for quite a while. I remember you had a bout with plantar fasciitis. I am going through that now. It has put a halt to my running. Anyway, I was wondering if you could recommend supportive but stylish shoes that you wore during your bout with plantar fasciitis? Around home I wear Brooks shoes but I need recommendations for work/office. I don’t want to wear frumpy orthopedic shoes! Thanks for your help.

  35. Hi Jo-Lynne Happy New Year! 
    I really enjoy your blog and would love to see a little more of what’s trending for the up coming seasons in terms of color, jewelry and accessories.  Sometimes when the budget is tight, a piece of costume jewelry, belt or scarf in a trending color is my go too ,if larger pieces are out of the question ! 
    Again ,love your blog and all the hard work you put in it!

  36. Amen to what all the other ladies have already said and written so eloquently.  To many of us, you are a friend from afar that we enjoy connecting with.  Even though I don’t know you personally, feel like you are a friend nonetheless.  Looking forward to your posts on updating/ refreshing older looks.  I am trying to shop my closet more. Ways to update using new accessories are very welcome.  I meant to send you my deepest condolences and sympathy on the loss of your two friends due to COVD and cancer.  As if all the upheavals of  2020 are not enough, death is an even more bitter pill especially when it happens unexpectedly to younger people and funerals or celebrations of life are not permitted. So sorry for your loss. 

  37. Thank You Jo-Lynne. You’ve been a blessing to me even though I’ve never met you. I look forward to your blog and how you share. It was a long 2020. I just found out today at noon my mom in memory care assisted living has covid. Many other residents and staff too. I feel so bad for her and the others. So far my mom just is really fatigued so praying she is ok. I haven’t got to visit her since March 2020. :(. She’s been so lonely and with her dementia so confused. Looking forward to your new post. I’d like to see 5 ways to wear the Everlane black mules. I received mine too late to wear now that the weather is cold. I want to this Spring. :). Love the quality and fit. Thanks for recommendation. 

  38. Happy New Year! Your the best and only blogger I have signed up to receive email updates. I still have a Kate Spade purse that I love and purchased after seeing you with it in a post and asking your advice about color. Still every time I use it I think Jo-Lynne helped me select this like shopping with a friend.

  39. I look forward to reading your blog every day and I have for so many years. You are such a hard worker and I learn so much from you. I love how you explain everything so clearly with great photographs to help us really see what works and what doesn’t. Thanks for being a bright spot in a very difficult year.

  40. It looks like you’ve no shortage of kudos here already, but I’ll add one more. Keep up the great work. You’re genuine, unpretentious, pragmatic (which is nice for gals like me on a tighter budget), and best of all you explain everything in really clear terms (with pictures! my favorite!). Thanks again, and take care.

  41. Hi my name is Talia I just want to report you the someone it’s using you pictures in Facebook to insult and defame my mom and father. We reported the Facebook me and my family. 

  42. How about 5 ways to wear a vest, as in a puffer/down vest or a quilted-type J. Crew vest? I feel like they fit with the “stay warm at home” theme!

  43. Finally, I can provide my two cents worth to this post.  While I have gotten used to you having a post on Saturdays, I can also adjust to there not being one so that you can spend more quality time with your family.  I know that you love your job, which you do mostly from home, but there is such a thing as work-life balance.  Now, I would be very sad if you stopped the Coffee Talk post on Sunday’s because it makes me feel like we are sitting down for a chat, face to face.  Seeing more posts on how to wear straight leg jeans would be awesome, especially if it includes the various footwear that can be worn with them.  And your try-on hauls are another favorite of mine.  Keep smiling!

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