Christine in the Wild (Ohio)

Happy Motivation Monday everyone! Meet Christine from Youngstown, Ohio. She has a blog called Fabulous and Pink, a lifestyle blog sharing life hacks, raising her 23-year old autistic nephew, and her job. She’s passionate about her job she has held with the same employer for the past 32 years. I have to say, I work for an employer and I have colleagues who have been there for 15+, 20+, 25+ years and I don’t know how to math adds up because they certainly do fool me. It confirms the secret to life is to pursue the things that are meaningful and bring you happiness.

I know you are thinking “duh, Julie.” But really, people self-martyr hoping for that recognition, that promotion. People are willing to throw a colleague under the bus for that gold star. Those high moments are short and quickly become a drop of long dread of what you have just done.

Anyways, below is Christine’s interview. I have to say, I gush over that she has a paper planner herself because I have one too!

What’s your 9-to-5?

CJS_NEWI am a life-long administrative professional. I have worked for the same employer for more than 32 years. I started as a secretary/receptionist, and about 25 years ago my supervisor moved out of town and I was promoted to Office Manager. I do all the bookkeeping, payroll, order entry, invoicing, A/R and A/P, human resources, insurance management, banking and finance, and daily shipping. We are a small industrial company that has been in business for nearly 55 years. Myself and my two bosses run the company. It’s a great place to work. One of my bosses is the owner and he is a great, great guy. He’s very home-town and family oriented. He’s very supportive of local businesses and very loyal to his friends and employees.  He always goes above and beyond to take care of all his employees.

I love my job. I love what I do. And I love who I work with. After all these years, it’s still a challenge and I still learn something every single day. It’s truly my home away from home.

You sound like you find joy and meaning in your job, any advice to those are looking or seeking the same? For me, I find joy in my work but a lot of my peers (including my husband) tend to be serial job hoppers despite having amazing benefits and pay (far greater than mine).

Find what you absolutely LOVE to do… then it’s not a job…. It’s something you enjoy doing and it’s not tedious. And, find a place with co-workers you can depend on and are as dedicated as you are.

Favorite things to do in Youngstown, Ohio?

We love dining out! Youngstown has a high ethnic concentration with tons of Italian, Greek, and Mexican restaurants. We are very well known for our pizza, so there is no small shortage of fantastic pizza places!

What was your main drive behind your blog?

As a single parent working 9-5 over the age of 50, I’ve gained a lot of experience that I’d like to pass on to young women in similar situations.

What topics does your blog cover?

Anything and everything. Daily working struggles, making ends meet, dealing with my autistic nephew that I’m raising, family, friends, and relationships.

For people who are visiting your blog for the first time, what posts and/or series should they read?

I would love for new visitors to read about how I got started at my jobAnother, would be my thoughts on being a secretaryOne last would be my experience being a mother of an autistic child.CSimone04

What are your short/ long term goals?  

Short term, to get my blog traffic up and reach as many people as possible. Long term, to be able to build my blog up and monetize it so I can support myself and my nephew if I retire in a few years.

What are meaningful things/activities in your life?

I’m fortunate enough to still have my 81-year-old parents living. And I’ve realized that my family is my biggest support system. And most of all, my nephew is the absolute light of my life. He’s truly a joy and my biggest inspiration.


How do you start your day?

I sleep as late as possible. I get up about 6 am and immediately get ready to head to work. I leave by 7 am and have a 30-min drive to work. On the way, I stop at McDonald’s for my daily large sweet tea (not a coffee drinker!). I arrive at work about 7:40 am and spend a little time surfing the internet before my work day actually starts at 8 am.  

What is your favorite way to end the day?

We head to bed about 11:00 pm and I usually spend about 30 min in bed playing games on my iPad. It seems so silly, but it’s very relaxing!
You got a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go?

That’s a toss-up. My first choice would be Hawaii. I’ve never been there and am dying to go! My second choice is Boston, or one of its northern suburbs. I love those little New England towns. My third choice would be a flight to Miami where I can hop on a cruise ship to the Caribbean. I looovvveee cruising!

Most valuable advice you’ve received?

 Always tell the truth. The truth is EASY to remember. It’s lies that are hard to remember. Treat people the way you want to be treated. Be kind and courteous to others.

You can never leave your home without… my handbag. It has everything I need in it, including my planner and cell phone.

You have planner! I have one too and it’s paper. I presume yours is too!

I do have a paper planner! I can’t bring myself to switch to electronic… I’m still old-fashioned and need that paper in my hands!

How do you find time to blog?

I get home from work by 5:30 – 6 pm every night. After dinner, I spend an hour doing laundry or a little house cleaning. After that I sit down with my laptop and work on my blog. Then on the weekends, I spend 4-5 hours Saturday and Sunday working on it as well. I’m fortunate that I have time during the work day and can squeeze in some blog time.

Follow Christine on social media!


That Texas Couple in the Wild

Meet Michelle and Marty from That Texas Couple, a wife-and-husband blog focusing on travel stories and tips. They’ve been to Italy, Germany, England, France, New Orleans, and more. They’re so passionate about travel inspire they’d like everyone to live a life of travel no matter what their current circumstances are.

I love her life aspirations because, I too, am married and we enjoy travelling. Also we don’t have kids ourselves (yet), but I know when we do have kids, we’ll still travel. Sanctimommies and helicopter moms, beware.

Check out their interview below. All answers were written by Michelle.

Marty and MichellWhat is your 9-to-5?

My 9-5 is a school administrator. I work to ensure that our youth of today are properly educated and ready to become productive citizens. My husband, Marty, who is the other half of that Texas Couple is a police officer. Since we are both public servants, we work crazy hours and our jobs can sometimes be stressful, so we turn to travel to help us take a mental and physical break from life. Check out our bio.

Why did you start blogging?

We began blogging as a fun way to document our travel experiences. Our family and friends always wanted to know where we went and see photos, so it was just a fun way to share our travels. People then started asking us for tips and tricks, so we expanded our blog based upon that, helping people experience travel no matter what their current circumstances are.

We cover travel destinations near and far. Since we are from Texas, we have several Texas posts. We have also been to Europe several times, so I am working on getting more European stuff on there. Our blog is still in it’s early stages, and since we both work full time, it’s growing slowly.

For anyone who is visiting your blog for the first time, where should they go?

When you first visit, definitely check out the following posts:


Texas State Fair

What are your goals?

Our​ ​long​ ​term​ ​goals:

  1. Become blogging superstars
  2. Make enough to travel the world as digital nomads
  3. Retire in Europe to drink wine, eat pasta and get fat! LOL!

Short​ ​term​ ​goals:

  1. Grow our subscribers and followers. This has been a slow process 😦
  2. Get to Ireland or Greece by next summer!

What are things in your life that bring meaning?

Of course my family and friends are super important. I try to always make time for people to build and grow relationships. After family, travel tops the list. Marty and I are always looking for ways to travel more. It doesn’t matter if it’s a long weekend, or a 3-week trip to Europe, we constantly look for ways to travel. If we can’t get away too far, then we find ways to be tourists in our own city. It’s amazing how much you can discover about your local community when you take a guided tour, or just talk to locals about their favorite places.

How do you start your day?

I generally roll begrudgingly out of bed a little after 5. Sleep walking, I put on workout clothes and find a way to do some type of physical activity. To be honest, some days it’s no more than a 20 minute walk, but at least it’s something. I then get dressed for work, grab a cup of coffee and my laptop and start my blogging routine. I spend 1.5-2 hours each morning working on the blog in some way. It varies from educating myself on blogging to brainstorming posts to participating in social media. It’s really my favorite part of the day, I truly love blogging and talking about travel with any and everyone!

What is your favorite way to end the day?

Since Marty and I are empty nesters, I love ending the day on a patio somewhere having appetizers and a glass of wine laughing about the antics of our day. Marty and I are high school sweethearts and he is truly my best friend and the love of my life. Ending the day with him in any way possible makes me a happy girl.

You get a free ticket to go anywhere in the world — where would it be?

Had you asked me this 3 years ago I would have said Rome, Italy, but since Rome has been checked off of my list, I would now have to say Greece. I want to wander through the whitewashed houses on the hillside and sit and have wine overlooking the beautiful blue water.

Most​ ​Valuable​ ​Advice?

Don’t worry too much about what other people think of you. You only have one life and you should live it your way!

Complete this sentence: I never​ ​leave​ ​home​ ​without….

My credit card and camera. You never know what adventure you will wind up on, always be prepared!

It was so much fun to meet a couple who blogs! Follow Michelle and Marty from That Texas Couple on their social media!



Lisa in the Wild (Singapore)

Happy Motivation Monday everyone!

Meet Lisa from Lisa T Pink, a Singaporean-based lifestyle blog focusing on fashion, media, and beauty. When Lisa is not blogging, she works as an analyst as her full-time job. Outside of work and blogging, she enjoys spending time with her family.

Check out the interview below!

Lisa PinkWhat’s your 9-to-5?

I sit in front of a laptop, trying to resolve people’s issues and concerns over matters that probably isn’t issues to begin with which later turns out to be of someone’s issues. At where I work, I support people of importance (or they think they are) with little or almost none to do with blogging but I get to write quite a fair bit on daily basis, replying emails. I call my job, my bread supplier, one who supplies my daily bread (my pay essentially).

Favorites places in Singapore?
My top 3 places in Singapore have to be Sentosa Island, D’Kranji Farm, Botanic Gardens

What was your main drive behind your blog?

Ever since my 1st job as a sub-editor of a Travel Magazine, I have never look back since. My main drive is my passion, my passion for words, my passion to share and my passion to see eye to eye with my readers. Nothing can be more fulfilling and satisfying knowing that people who reads my blog relates to them in some way or another.

What topics does your blog cover?

I cover on Travel, Lifestyle and Fashion topics as that’s my niche even back in the editorial days. But lately, I am trying to share some of my beauty and food encounters too, very subtly introducing this to my readers.

Lisa Pink

For people who are visiting your blog for the first time, what posts and/or series should they read?

My top 3 picks in getting to know me would have to be:

Alternatively, if you are just wanting to get a feel of my writing style, then read up on the following:

What are your short/ long term goals?

Short term – To travel to places where my legs can bring me to before old age hits me.

Long term – My bucket list is too long but these are my top 3:

  1. See my kids grow up, finish school, graduate, get married, the whole life cycle of a normal human being I suppose. I hope they surprise me!!
  2. To live my life to the fullest and retire at the age of 55 with my loving husband. He would kill me if I thought otherwise. Haha
  3. Publish a book that represents me and hopefully will bring Joy and Laughter to people who knew me. A book they can relate to even when I am no longer around.

What are meaningful things/activities in your life?

Time well spent with my family members. Memories can only be remembered and not bought.

Lisa Pink

How do you start your day?

Typically with a cup of tetley next to my bed, made by my lovely husband of course.

What is your favorite way to end the day?

A goodnight kiss.

You got a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go?

Iceland or Norway – To see the Northern lights.

Favorite author or book and why.
Dan Brown – his writing style is not only captivative but definitely not conform to the norm.

Most valuable advice you’ve received (can applicable to life, career, family, etc):

I don’t care where you work, it could be at Starbucks, at the Park or even at a fast food restaurant, so long as you work and get things done, that is what matters most. The Key to success is not where you work, but who you work for!

You can never leave your home without…

MR Samsung!!!

How do you find time to blog?

People are not defined by time, people dictates time! If you want to blog at 8pm, nothing can stop you from doing so but only yourself.

Lisa PinkCheck out Lisa’s blog, Lisa T. Pink and also follow her social medias:

Check out more 9-to-5 blogger (or beyond 9-to-5) interviews here!

Pam in the Wild

Meet Pam from I Want My Pop Culture where she blogs Top 40 music videos from 1980 to today. Check out the interview below!

IMG_0192What’s your 9-to-5?

I work at a department store.

Location: Michigan


What was your main drive behind your blog?

It had been a dream of mine to create a website about music. When I worked in an office, I would think about writing.However, the entire idea was overwhelming. It wasn’t until I was unemployed that I was able to follow through.

What topics does your blog cover?

My blog covers Top 40 music videos from various genres. I recap and review them.

In this case…what are your top 5 music videos?

My favorite top 5 music videos are:

  1. U2 – I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For.
  2. Cyndi Lauper – Time After Time
  3. Dillon Francis & Kygo – Coming Over
  4. DJ Snake & Bipolar Sunshine – The Middle
  5. Kylie Minogue – In Your Eyes
What are your short/ long term goals?
In the short term, I want to make my monthly goals [in blogging]. For the long term, I would like to go full-time [blogging].

What are meaningful things/activities in your life?
I like spending time with my family and friends. I read, shop and try to catch up on my television shows and movies in my spare time.


How do you start your day?

I start my day by opening Facebook. I like to check in and seeing a funny meme someone posted helps me wake up in the morning.

What is your favorite way to end the day?
I end my day at 1 am after watching a movie or a television show.  I’m a currently on a Dawson’s Creek rewatch. It helps me unwind after working my full-time job and writing.
You got a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go?

I would go to Japan in an instant, specifically downtown Tokyo. I love the crowd and constant goings-on of the arcades, kitty cafes and gardens.

Most valuable advice you’ve received?

The most valuable advice I’ve received is to keep writing. I used to bounce ideas off a guy I was interested in at one time and he would always end the emails with it. Although I don’t know where he is now, it stayed with me.

You can never leave your home without…

I could never leave home without my phone. My battery recently went out on my old phone and I must’ve committed a couple traffic violations to get a new phone before it closed.

How do you find time to blog?

I usually blog after dinner. I want to spend time with my family first after a long day at work. It helps me recharge and stay motivated.

Get social with Pam. You can check her social medias at:

Do you blog and work a full time job? Do you want to be featured? Feel free to reach out!

Paula in the Wild

The [X] in the Wild series has been a fun project to do because I get an opportunity to get to know different bloggers from all over the world. Plus I get to apply my interviewer skills.

Meet Paula — she has two blogs: her personal blog, The Geeky Shopaholic and her business blog, Paula Sexton Hickey, Virtual Assistant. And her 9-to-5 job is an 8 PM-8 PM job as a night shift assistant manager. That’s crazy!  Check out the interview below!

Paula HickeyWhat is your blog about? At my personal blog, I write about the things that I love – books, geeky movies and TV shows, blogging, and my life in general.

At my business website, I’m sharing my journey as I start up my own business as well as tips and tricks I learn along the way.

What’s your 9-to-5? I work 8pm- 8am as a night-shift assistant manager for a major retail store. I’ve been with the company 17 years! And I’ve been an assistant manager for five years. Four of which has been on nights. I stayed on nights because of the schedule. Four nights on and three nights off! Which is a pretty sweet schedule!

Location: Tennessee

Favorite places in Tennessee?
Pigeon Forge is one of my favorite places to visit. There is so much to do in that area. You have Dollywood, all kinds of shows and attractions, and you’re close to the Aquarium in Gatlinburg,. My husband and I like to get away over there and rent a cabin for a few days. It so relaxing and fun! You feel like you’re in the middle of nowhere but the town is just a few minutes away. I also love the Tennessee Theatre in Knoxville. My sister and I saw Cinderella there last year and it was amazing! And the theatre is beautiful! Chattanooga is also a fun place to visit. Rock City is my favorite! And the Chattanooga Theatre is awesome! And if you love a train ride, you have to visit the Tennessee Valley Railroad. My friends and I took a ride a few  years ago and it was so much fun!

What was your main drive behind your blog?
I started blogging on a whim. Everyone else was doing it, so why not?! But then I found that I really enjoyed having a place to share my thoughts and connect with people. It also brought back my love of writing!

My business blog is mostly a way to showcase to potential clients my writing style and let them know a little about me.

What topics does your blog cover?
I share my thoughts on books, movies, and TV shows. But I also write about deeper issues like faith and feminism. The business blog so far is about my journey as a VA (virtual assistant) and what I’m learning along the way.

For people who are visiting your blog for the first time, what posts and/or series should they read?
Two of my most popular posts are about blogging: 8 Blogging Rules Everyone Needs to Follow and 8 Things Bloggers Don’t Have to Do. One of my personal favorites is one I wrote for International Women’s Day, The Women I Admire the Most.

What are your short/ long term goals?
My short term goal is to make enough money as a VA that I can step down from my assistant manager position. That would allow me to focus even more on my business. Long term I want to be a full time VA.

What are meaningful things/activities in your life?
Spending time with my husband and our two pups is the best part of everyday. And spending time with my sister, brother-in-law, and nephew. I don’t see them a lot but I love the time I do get to spend with them.


Folks, she would like to emphasize this is not her kid, but her nephew :-).

How do you start your day?
I wish I could say that I was one of those people who had an amazing morning routine and spent an hour writing while drinking a cup of coffee, but the truth is I’m barely functioning when I wake up. The only reason I can dress myself is that I laid my outfit out before I went to bed!

What is your favorite way to end the day?
Laying in bed next to my hubby, listening to the pups snore.

You got a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go? London! I’m a Doctor Who fan after all! And I need my picture at Platform 9 3⁄4! Because I also love Harry Potter!

Most valuable advice you’ve received: “If the direction
you’re going in doesn’t scare you, you’re going in the wrong direction!” I can’t remember where I first read this quote, but it has always stuck with me.

Complete this sentence, you can never leave your home without…my phone, lip balm, and sunglasses.

Wow, you have two blogs! How do you find time to blog? Any tips on managing multiple blogs?
I actually wrote a post about this on my blog. My life has changed a lot since I wrote it though. I’m now married and I’ve started my own business. I don’t have the time to post three days a week like I use to. Now I post twice a month at each blog. And even that isn’t easy to do.

Some weeks are harder than others to find time for everything. I take advantage of any spare time I have to write and then I schedule my posts in advance. That schedule option is a life saver! I also work on my blog during my breaks and lunches at work. I’ll do things like answer emails and comments. I also keep a running list of post idea on my phone, so that when I do write all I have to do is pick a topic and start.

Get social with Paula. You can check her social medias at:

Do you blog and work a full time job? Do you want to be featured? Feel free to reach out!

Sarah in the Wild

This idea was itching my mind for a while. I wanted to do an interview series highlighting bloggers who do full jobs like me. I think we need to highlight there are certainly more things in life than work and blogging is a gateway to support and share hobbies and meaningful activities. To me it is refreshing to hear and know that we are more than our jobs.

So here it is — going forward every Monday, I’ll be doing a series call [X] in the Wild. If you’re interested in a blog interview, contact me.

For the first of the series, meet Sarah from her eponymous blog, Sarah Trademark (, a UK-based lifestyle blog leaning towards beauty products and food. I have to say, she’s got some rad magical hair! Also thank you for being the inaugural interviewee. Here’s the blog interview below!

Sarah Trademark

What’s your 9-to-5? I work as a sales admin in a busy office for a company that supplier industrial fastenings (so nothing to do with my blog!)

Location: Oxfordshire,UK

Favorite things/landmarks from your home? I love going London on day trips to see the sights or go shopping.

What was your main drive behind your blog? I enjoy writing and shaving my views with others.

What topics does your blog cover? Hair, makeup/skincare as well as fitness/food and homeware.

For people who are visiting your blog for the first time, what posts and/or series should they read? I really enjoy writing gift guide posts so I would suggest starting out to check those out!

What are your short/ long term goals? To enjoy myself. Blogging is a hobby for me, not a job, so I want to enjoy what I do and not be pressured to post at certain times etc.

What are meaningful things in your life? My husband and my pets are everything to me. We have a beautiful family (2 guinea pigs and 2 cats)

Ooh you have pets! How are your pets like? They are all so loving. We have two guinea pigs and two cats and they all get on so well it’s beautiful.

How do you start your day? I check all my social pages as soon as I get up before I go to work.

What is your favorite way to end the day? To relax and watch tv before bed.

You got a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world, where would you want to go? I would love to go to Florida to go to Disneyworld.

Most valuable advice you’ve received? Be yourself and don’t try to conform to what you think is “normal”.

Complete this sentence, “you can never leave your home without”… My phone!

How do you find time to blog? I sometimes do it in the evening but mostly catch up at the weekends

Get social with Sarah! You can check her out at:Sarah Trademark

Do you blog and work a full time job? Do you want to be featured? Feel free to reach out!