06 Dec 2017

Life Update!! (All the Things)

Hey y’all! SO many things have happened since I’ve last written on this blog: I’ve gotten engaged, I moved from NYC, I’ve started a new job, and I’ve refreshed my logo and a new layout design! Although all of these things deserve separate posts, I thought I’d update you with everything in one big life update first. Grab a cup of coffee and let’s chat!

I’m ENGAGED.

I said yes to my boyfriend of 8 years on October 27, 2017!! It was perfect – an intimate proposal 2 days after my 26th birthday (and actually on my cousin’s birthday!) in a gorgeous park overlooking the Manhattan skyline. It wasn’t three hours later than I was on the phone with my mom, squealing and talking about wedding hashtags. Of course I’m excited about spending my life with arguably the most annoying person in the world (love you Rob!). Of course, the marriage is more important than the wedding – the wedding is only a day, after all – BUT this wedding is so important to me and so many people. I want to enjoy being a fianceé and a bride as much as I can since I only plan to do this once! So, I treated myself to Southern Weddings 10th Anniversary Issue, the Southern Weddings Joyful Wedding Planner, and The Knot Engagement Issue. I’m still on the hunt for a Bride-to-Be Coffee Mug to drink out of every single day.

We already have a venue — we were both sold as soon as we toured it — and a tentative date. This date is so so SO important to me, so I hope it works out. I honestly have so much to say about this engagement and wedding planning that I’ve added a Wedding tab to my blog. Let me know if you would like to see any wedding related posts!

I moved out of NYC.

After a little over a year, I moved out of NYC to head back down south. This is another life update that calls for it’s own post. I truly wanted to love NYC as much as most people do, I found that I just craved the South and close proximity to family so much and I couldn’t shake those feelings. Don’t get me wrong, the city is wonderful in a lot of ways: all of the lights (Cue Kanye), having almost anything at your fingertips, and literally being able to walk outside to a movie set (I walked past Amy Schumer filming something on my commute, and my boyfriend saw some of filming Luke Cage on his) were amazing and definitely not something I could get everyday in South Carolina.

However, I found that the city wore down on me: the constant busyness, the lack of grass (you never know how much you miss grass until you go weeks without seeing it) and the griminess of the city. I think on one rainy, gross way to work, skipping up subway stairs to avoid stepping on an abandoned box of pizza and looking to the left to see a perfect circle of human poop was the day I decided I couldn’t stay there much longer. I started to get so grossed out by Manhattan, it even got to the point where I physically dreaded leaving my house.

Like I said, I have way more to say on leaving New York. And it wasn’t all bad – I had the coworkers of a lifetime and met Oprah, so stay tuned.

I started a new job.

As some of you may know, I worked at HBO for a year in the digital + social media department. It was AMAZING. Surely the best job I’ve  had thus far. So, why did I leave? My desire to leave NYC also meant leaving HBO. I also realized with a jolt that corporate life is NOT FOR ME. At all. This might be the most millennial thing you’ve ever heard me say, but I truly dislike structure in the workplace. I think, besides my very first job out of college, this was the first job where I wasn’t in control of my own schedule. I’ve always needed to make my own schedule so I can have time to write, and even though I finished my manuscript and landed an agent with it (!!!) it still felt like I was in a creative rut. I wanted to find a job that gave me the freedom to write as well as paid the bills, and I’ve found just that. My new job is within the same field, but remote. Like I said, HBO is a great and super cool place to work and I’ve met some incredible people there (I’m even inviting them to my wedding!) but I want to be able to use most of my workday towards writing.

Speaking of Which… Writing.

*whew* Writing is always there, but sometimes it’s easier than others. I have two exciting things I’m working on, but I did go through a little period of writers’ block, which is never fun. I think it may have been because I left my old job, started my new job, got engaged, and moved from state to state all in one month. I’m starting to get my writing (and reading) bug back to make up for lost time, which I’m very excited about. My tips for writers block? Pray, remember WHY you write, read, start small, and sometimes, spend a day or two doing nothing writing related. The thoughts will naturally build up in your head to the point where you can’t wait to write them down! More to come on this soon 🙂

My new theme + refreshed logo!!

I had the pleasure of trying out this theme provided by Empress Themes, a site created by Victoria McGinley and Lisa Butler. I’ve been following Victoria for Y E A R S, and reached out to her about FIVE years ago about potentially creating a custom blog design for me. At the time, her price point was a tad bit out of my budget (rightfully so, she’s amazing!) so I am super glad she’s offering premade themes that allow bloggers on a budget to enjoy her crisp, clean designs. I’m using the Archer theme, because it’s more word focused than picture focused, and it looks so clean and professional. I LOVE it. She has two more incredible themes to offer than you can check out here!

As for the logo, the cartoon is the same one from Marshae Smith Designs, but I’ve added elements from a designer on Etsy to create my new, perfect logo! The refreshed logo combined with the new layout gives me a blog feel that I just love.

Those are my life updates in a nutshell! Like I said, I plan to elaborate on more of these in a separate posts, but please let me know if there’s something you want to see specifically! I’d truly love to know. Thank you so much for reading!

 

14 Comments

  1. Chantel wrote:

    I’ve missed your posts, India. Congratulations on the engagement and other fun changes! I’d love to read separate posts on all of these.

    Xx

    Posted on 12.7.17 · Reply to comment
    • India wrote:

      Thank you so much!! I’ll definitely do more 🙂

      Posted on 2.6.18 · Reply to comment
  2. Kady wrote:

    Congrats on all fronts! It sounds like it’s been a busy spring & summer. I’ve missed reading your blog and was excited to see it pop up in my email this morning. We just celebrated our first wedding anniversary in October and I still love reading wedding posts by others! They were a huge resource for me while we were planning ours. I’m happy for you friend!

    Posted on 12.7.17 · Reply to comment
    • India wrote:

      Aww, thank you so much for this!! Happy late anniversary (I’m late, just seeing a lot of my comments lol!!) But I’ve been reading a ton of wedding blogs and they’ve been super helpful!! Thanks again! 🙂

      Posted on 2.6.18 · Reply to comment
  3. Chika wrote:

    Hey India,

    That’s such great news! I wish you all the success and happiness coming your way, and may your married life bring you great joy 🙂

    Posted on 12.7.17 · Reply to comment
  4. Norma wrote:

    Congrats! Just started following on Instagram.

    Posted on 12.7.17 · Reply to comment
  5. Lu McFarlane wrote:

    Congratulations on your season of new beginnings, enjoy being a bride-to-be, it’s a lot of fun. While I was engaged we read Sacred Marriage by Gary Thomas together, and it was helpful and provoked many good conversations. I’m a native New Yorker, currently living in Central PA, and I truly love and miss my city every day- stink smells, crappy mta service, and rats the size of cats, I miss it all lol!

    Posted on 12.7.17 · Reply to comment
    • India wrote:

      Thank you!! And I’ll definitely check that book out. I actually do miss a few things about NYC, but overall, I’m glad I left haha! I guess there’s no place like home!

      Posted on 2.6.18 · Reply to comment
  6. Em wrote:

    I know this is a little late, but I’m so excited for you, friend!! What amazing updates!

    Posted on 1.2.18 · Reply to comment
  7. Nicole wrote:

    Could you elaborate on how you got a job at HBO, how you now have a flexible job being so young and what your major was in college? Congratulations on the engagement!

    Posted on 1.8.18 · Reply to comment
    • India wrote:

      Hi! I’d definitely do something like this, thanks for suggestion!! And thank you! 😀

      Posted on 2.6.18 · Reply to comment

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  • Still swooning over this @galmeetsglam dress and @kendrascott jewelry 😍 @whitv is a creative directing genius!
  • I met the Planner Queen @emilyley today and she is just as sweet and warm as you’d think! I had the pleasure of participating in the @simplified planner photoshoot and planner gals: y’all are NOT ready for the new covers. I already have mine picked out lol! Today was such a fun day with so many amazing and hardworking women. 💕 #simplifiedsisterhood
  • So this is the first true bookshelf I’ve had since I’ve started Booktube like FIVE years ago!!! These aren’t all of my books, I need another shelf, and I don’t know if this shelf will stay organized like this (I’ve already arranged one), but for right now, I’m soo happy with it. Two of these rows are TBR shelves - I haven’t read the books on them yet! Do you see any faves? 💕📚 #shelfie #shelfiesunday
  • The cover of my debut novel, THE FORGOTTEN GIRL, publishing with @scholasticinc on November 5, 2019! The full interview including the inspiration behind the story and some fun facts about me are at the link in my bio! I LOVE this cover so much and how it perfectly embodies the story! The cover focuses on our ghost, Avery, who was buried in an abandoned and segregated graveyard. 👻❄️She wants to be remembered by any means necessary. Iris and Daniel try to help her but ... to what end? Thank you so much to @maevenn for such a BEAUTIFUL cover. A bonus is that blue is my favorite color! 🙌🏽💙 #TheForgottenGirl
  • I’ve uploaded my 2019 Bookish and Writing Goals and a Copyediting vlog to my channel, and a bpost all about @purebarrelkn and how it made me love working out again to my blog! The links to all of these are in my bio. I’ve turned in first pass pages for #TheForgottenGirl too! 😍 I can’t wait to show you what the cover and inside pages look like! This past week was pretty busy, so I felt this shirt from @clutchcowork was pretty fitting. Here’s to an restful Sunday to prepare for the start of the a new work week. ❤️
  • Happy New Year everyone! I took the day yesterday to set goals for the year in my #powersheets, and figure out my Word of the Year. I decided on Steadfast. Here’s why. ⬇️ Steadfast: fixed in direction; steadily directed: a steadfast gaze. firm in purpose, resolution, faith, attachment, etc., unwavering, as resolution, faith, adherence, etc.

Last year I spent a lot of time dwelling on decisions - from big ones to small ones like figuring out which book to read next. 😂 I was easily distracted by worry, stress or social media. 
This year, I’ll have tunnel vision and focus on what matters. I’ll be able to make a decision and stick to it. I’ll focus on my debut author year without the noise. I’ll be so strong in my faith that I won’t think to worry or stress. I’ll be intentional in both work and play time! 
And there’s this Bible verse: “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” Isaiah ‭26:3‬ ‭NIV‬ 
Here’s to a fruitful and exciting year! 🙌🏽🎉What’s your Word of the Year?
  • This month marks 6 years since I chopped my hair off and went natural! Every December, I get my hair trimmed and straightened (this time, I got around 3 inches cut bc i wasn’t that kind to my hair this year.) Swipe for the blowout I got right before I got it straightened, and some other fun pics through the years! ❤️ the very last pic is a length check. Thinking of doing a natural hair journey video on my channel! 🙆🏽‍♀️
  • Merry Christmas from us and our 3 different types of plaid. 😂🎄🎁 ❤️#PajamaChristmas