Happy New Year!

Bows & Sequins celebrating New Year's Eve!

Happy 2017! I hope you all had a happy and safe holiday with your friends and families. I spent the long weekend up in Wisconsin with a big group of friends and it was the perfect mix of low key fun. For the first year in a while, I feel refreshed and ready to hit the ground running this week!

I think most people fall into one of two categories… You either hate resolutions or you embrace them. While I definitely don’t support waiting around to make changes in your life (Why wait for a new year when you can just start now?!), I always welcome the opportunity to take a step back to reflect and make plans for the future.

Bows & Sequins celebrating New Year's Eve!

2016 was a rollercoaster ride for me. This past year was full of incredible experiences, but also (hands down) the biggest challenges I’ve had to overcome, both personally and professionally. Extraordinary highs paired with some of the lowest lows. But with challenge comes growth and I truly feel like I’ve learned more about myself this year than the past 27 combined. I’m excited for the feeling of a fresh start and ready to head into the new year with new goals, plans, and perspective.

Bows & Sequins celebrating New Year's Eve!

I don’t have ‘resolutions’ per se, but I’m consistently trying to be a better version of myself throughout the year. In the spirit of the new year, here’s a little list of some of the things I’m currently working on…

  1. Health & Wellness // I stopped weighing myself about a year ago because I got so frustrated with the number on the scale. I’ve incorporated a lot of strength workouts into my exercise routine and when you’re gaining muscle, the number doesn’t reflect all of the hard work you’re putting in. I now gage my feelings towards my body based on what I see in the mirror and how my clothes fit. I’m not working towards a number, but more so a feeling. This year was a tough one for my workout routine because I was traveling more than I was home in Chicago. Admittedly, I do work out a ton when I’m in Chicago, but it was hard to keep up with any progress or results when I was traveling so much. While I still will travel a good amount this year, I’m striving for more of a balance between being home and away. While I’m home, I’m going to be switching up my workout routine a little bit over the next few months in an effort to break past the plateau I feel like I’ve hit. It seems like a lot of you enjoy the fitness content here on Bows & Sequins and I’m going to make an effort to share more of that in 2017… Please let me know if there is anything specific you want to see, read, or know more about!
  2. Positivity & Perspective // Life can be a real bitch sometimes, you know? But it could always be worse. There were a few periods of the last year where it just felt like anything that could go wrong did go wrong. It’s easy to want to throw in the towel and just give up, have a bad attitude, or feel sorry for yourself. I’ve spent a lot of the year training myself to look for the silver linings throughout the shitstorms and handle myself better on the bad days. One of my favorite quotes to remember… Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. –Charles R. Swindoll
  3. Balance & Slowing Down // This resonates with me on so many different levels right now. I tend to do the most. I’m a zero or one hundred (and ten) kind of person… I’m all the way in or I’m out. For example, I wanted to take advantage of my travel opportunities in 2016, but I really ended up burning myself out with being gone so much of the year. Same thing goes for work projects, going out, dating, you name it. I am trying to have more balance in my life right now, in pretty much every aspect… Even if that means slowing down at certain points. I tend to be go, go, go, and always looking ahead, but I need to remember to relax and enjoy the current moment, too.

Bows & Sequins celebrating New Year's Eve!

I could go on and on with a laundry list of things I want to change and improve upon, but I’ll leave it with those three for now.

I definitely don’t say it enough, but I want to give the biggest heartfelt THANK YOU to each and every single one of you that read this blog and follow along on my journey. I feel so lucky to be able to have this little community to share bit and pieces of my life with, and I can’t thank you enough for all of your support over the past six years. Here’s to making 2017 the best one yet!

xoxo JRS

Bows & Sequins celebrating New Year's Eve!

Photos taken at South Loop Loft in Chicago

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Leave a Comment


  1. 1.2.17

    I really enjoy following along with you! Happy 2017!

    • 1.20.17
      Jessica said:

      Thanks Rachel, that means a lot! Happy 2017!

  2. 1.2.17
    Ellie said:

    Love this post! I waffle between making resolutions and trying to constantly evaluate and check in with myself. My 101 in 1001 list doesn’t hurt either since that has lots of goals on it :).

    If you need easy workouts for when you’re on the road, I recently discovered Spotebi.com and I’m OBSESSED. I’ve actually done 3 in the past 8 days which is better than the no workouts I usually do lol. Each workout is really short (about 30 min) and on each page there is a breakdown of the moves, a Spotify playlist, and an interval timer that announces out loud the next move, counts down, and has an animated drawing of the exercise. I’ve tried to do intervals by looking a printout and the clock and focusing on what I’m doing and it’s so discouraging! This way, I can focus on the moves and let the timer tell me what to do next and when. I don’t love the 10 min warmup they suggest, so I do a couple songs I remember from Zumba classes or just dance around for a song or two to warm up 🙂

    • 1.23.17
      Jessica said:

      Amazing, this sounds right up my alley! I’ll definitely have to check it out next time I’m headed on a trip. Thanks!

  3. 1.2.17

    Those look like some great resolutions for the New Year. Slowing down always seems like a must, especially after the hustle and bustle of the holidays. Also, I’m loving that loft! I’ll have to check it out next time I’m in Chicago. –Tovah @ illhavewhatsheswearingblog.com

    • 1.23.17
      Jessica said:

      Yes, you definitely have to! South Loop Loft is a must!

  4. 1.2.17
    Sofie said:

    I love you fitness and travel content above all else. If you’re up for it, it would be great to hear what you think of different fitness classes in the cities you visit. I think a lot of readers would get some use out of a London or Paris studio guide.

  5. 1.3.17
    Mary Kate said:

    Love this post! I absolutely look forward to your fitness content. I find it difficult to work fitness into my schedule between classes, but I know it must be a priority. Would love to see a post on workouts you can do with little time!

    • 1.23.17
      Jessica said:

      I know how challenging that can be! When I was working full-time in addition to the blog, my workout priority was always a) something I enjoyed, and b) something that gave me a full-body workout in a short amount of time. That’s why I became addicted to SoulCycle! I’d try to squeeze it in 2-3 times during the week and once on the weekends.

      I’ve become quite the fan of Orange Theory fitness lately… I love how you get your cardio and your weight training in during the 60 minutes. Have you tried it?!