Personal

Ask Me Anything

Back in January, I asked you to share a bit about yourselves and tell me what you wanted me to write about. And I received some incredible feedback that left me feeling inspired to cover a few new topics like how Conor and I met.

Then I opened myself up on instagram asking you to email me if there was something you were struggling with. I was able to talk to someone about relocating to a new city and a few of you struggling to make friends (because we’ve all been there) inspired me to write this. That post resulted in women across the country connecting with one another – a group of 9 in DC and there are over 30 women planning a brunch here in Chicago!

Writing about things I’ve struggled with personally and professionally, and being able to help others by sharing my story is something I really enjoy doing. So today I want to know what issues you might be dealing with, what you want to know about me, or what I can write about that might help or inspire you. Know that I’ll do my very best to reply to each of you and that I’ll cover topics I feel I’m able to cover in the weeks to come.

What questions do you have for me? Leave them in the comments below!

  • Anna Fuertes

    Hi ! My dear yellow lab is 10 – I know how you love dogs as well – and I dread even just thinking about they moment Sam will leave us. Have you ever thought about this? I’d love to hear your thoughts. thanks! xxx

    • Jessica

      Hi Anna, I’m not Danielle, but my beloved 12 year old German Shepherd mix passed away almost a year ago, after 10 years together, so it’s a relatively recent experience for me. It was incredibly hard–making that final decision to put her down is truly one of the hardest, most “adult” decisions I’ve ever made in my life, and I have great sympathy for everyone who has to do it. We’re often faced with actually making that choice for our pets, which is so hard to do, even when you know it’s the best option to take for a suffering pet. Something that gave me a measure of comfort was reminding myself that this too is part of love–and providing peace, comfort, and dignity at the end of your pet’s life is one of the last ways you will let them know that they have been so loved and cherished. Something my mother told me that also helped was “this is the last good thing you will do for her.” It doesn’t feel that way, but it’s true. I was able to be with my Scout when she passed, peacefully and painlessly, the two of us together. Nothing can really prepare you for that moment, but a good vet you trust and kind vet techs can make a huge difference. I also had a good friend with me, which is a lot to ask of someone, but it also helped. I hope you have more happy years ahead with Sam.

      • Anna Fuertes

        Thanks a lot for your loving message Jessica 🙂 It really helps to share these feelings… take care and greetings from Barcelona.

        • I have thought about it and dread the thought of Buddy not being here. This might sound crazy but late at night when we’re laying in bed, I’ll stare and him and just think about how lucky I am that he’s my pup. I try not to think about it because nothing can really prepare me for that day. He’s been my best friend. My roommate. My family. What Jessica said was so beautiful and sad at the same time. I just try to enjoy every moment and not think about it too often, but remember that it’s a reality. Wish he could be with me forever!

  • Sara B

    I would love to hear more about your financial budget… you always have new beautiful furniture/clothes/makeup/nights out… do you budget for these things? How do you save for retirement? How do you and Connor share home expenses since you aren’t married? Would love to see how you do it!

    • Amy Austin

      I wonder the same thing! Thanks for asking this:) and thanks for answering Danielle!

      • Anna Fuertes

        that’s a good one!

  • I’d love to hear more about your freelance interior design business! How many designs have you done? I’d be so interested to see any pictures or before and afters. I’d also love to know about the business of it – what services do you offer, what is the pricing like, how big a part of your life is it? I’ve done a little freelance design myself and would like to do more, so I’d be really interested to learn more about how you handle the business aspect of it. Thanks!

    • That would be such a great post if I had more info for you, but because it’s almost always e-decor, I’ve actually never gotten official before and afters and don’t know how interesting the post would be. Clients usually hire me for a few hours to help pick things out and that’s kind of it. The Everygirl keeps me pretty busy and it’s not something I’ve really pushed. Let me think about this one!

  • Ally

    How did you leave your job and pursue your dreams? I feel stuck in a job I do not love, but guilty if I were to leave. I want to grow my career and do what is best for me, but every time I try to do that I feel pressure to stay put in a position that I am not happy in.

    • I will think more about this, but I actually didn’t! I kept my job for 2 years until I could afford not to take on design projects, and now take on a select few and have my blog for fun. Make a list of everything you love. Figure out what it is you want to do or find something that might make you happier / get you closer to what it is you want to do. Or start something on the side and stick with it until you can go full time! Did that help at all?

  • If it isn’t too personal, I’d love to know how yoo support yourself full-time from and hire staff for The Everygirl. Is it just adsense, or does something else come into play? I think it’s very inspiring that you get to work for yourself!

    India | youtube.com/booksandbighair

  • Jess Holzberg

    I would love to hear more about your design business! How did you get started? Do you have formal education in interior design or did you just know you had passion and a knack for it?

    • I think people think this is more of a business than it might be. I’ve worked with VERY few clients – less than a handful in the past year? So I wouldn’t even say that I’ve “gotten started” since it’s not what I do. Ha. It’s just something I enjoy and do very, very, very on the side.

  • Anne

    I would your thoughts on the Dyson hair dryer – and how it compares to what you were using before (and what that was!). I have been thinking about making the investment – but have not pulled the trigger yet. I would love your thoughts!

    Also – would love to hear more about your process towards streamlining your closet (and not feel like you are wearing the same thing all the time!). I am trying to get rid of things I don’t love/use – but its so hard with clothes! Thanks!!

    • I can’t really write a full post on the dryer so I’ll answer here. I do like it–it’s easier to use and I really like the 3 heat levels, but I actually got it from Dyson at an event, so I didn’t buy it. I had a GHD but like that this one isn’t as damaging. If you have a good enough dryer you’re probably fine though. I’d just do some research!

      I will write more about streamlining my closet but I do kind of feel like I wear the same thing all the time. Ha.

      • Anne

        Thanks Danielle!

  • Tuere

    What’s your take on aging? I’ll be 40 later this year. I feel neither young nor old, yet realize I’m entering what people call “middle age.” From a chronological perspective, that makes sense because this probably is the middle of my life in terms of the number of years I’ll be alive. Yet that description doesn’t feel right to me either. Maybe it’s because I have yet to reach the socially expected milestones many people reach by this age (e.g. engagement, marriage, children, home ownership, divorce, remarriage, etc.). In other words, I haven’t “settled down,” as people define it. Oddly (?), I have yet to feel an itch to do so either. I embrace a slower pace of life while also feeling like I’m becoming more open and free-spirited about what I want my life to be like. Ten years ago, (even five years ago) I didn’t see this being the case. I’m evolving, into what, I’m not certain yet. It’s coming into view. So, I wonder what your experience is with who you’re becoming with age, too.

    • I actually have some anxiety about aging. The idea that you have to do XYZ at a certain age or whenever is really unreasonable. Success and happiness are determined by what works for you, your lifestyle, and what makes you happy. If you’re living the life you want, that’s all that matters! No one really knows what they’re evolving into. I will think more about this one and hopefully come up with something, because I really like this topic. Thank you!

      • Jessica

        I’d love to hear more on this too, Danielle. I feel the same way. I just turned 35 and I don’t feel “old” by any stretch of the imagination (quite the opposite), but I have a lot of anxiety about not passing any of these supposed “benchmarks” of adulthood. When almost everyone you know has, it can feel rather lonely (so I loved reading your perspective Tuere!).

  • Jessica

    I’d be interested to hear what an everyday workday is like as an editor–I’m curious about what you do, exactly, as an editor of The Everygirl. I know you mention a lot of conference calls and working with brands, but I’d love to know more (though I realize this might be more of an individual blog post idea–maybe?). I’d also be interested to know if you ever think about your professional future post-Everygirl, though I’m not in any way suggesting that you should be considering that or even need to! I also fully understand that none of us can predict the future, and I’m not really a “5 year plan” kind of girl myself. But I am curious if you’ve discovered more about what you do/don’t love about running your own website, and how that might affect the type of professional options you explore in the future.

    • I’ll see if I have enough for a post, but our days consist of what I’ve said–lots of calls, talking to our director brand partnerships to figure out sponsorships, then working on those sponsorships when contracts are signed, working with the team, reviewing story pitches, coming up with them, team meetings 2x a week, working on (some, mostly sponsored) content, some styling when that happens, holiday content the later part of the year etc. We are also working on something really big right now that I can’t post about just yet.

      I plan on sticking with The Everygirl as long as she’s around, and am living in the moment / enjoying the ride. I’ve thought about random things I might do but honestly have no plan or idea since I can’t really imagine not doing what I’m doing. I have DEFINITELY discovered things I enjoy more than others but that’s normal with any job, right?

      • Jessica

        Thanks for responding, Danielle! I always enjoy hearing what people actually do in their work everyday. I think it’s great you’ve found a project and profession that you enjoy so much! And I agree–a job is always a job, even when you love it. And that’s perfectly okay.

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