Planning A Day in the Life of J

I have something pretty different for you all today.

I know I haven’t posted since March or so, but I have a pretty good reason. To be honest, I think social media is currently oversaturated with everyone giving their “hot takes” on what’s happening in politics. I haven’t felt as though people would benefit or learn anything from any of the content I’ve considered posting recently, so I spared you all.

However, during this time I’ve developed a fun new hobby that really helps take my mind off things, politics included. I really don’t think anyone could have told me about a more Type A personality hobby than this: planner decorating.

I blurred out some work information, but here’s a glimpse at some of my plans!

That’s right, I make my planner look super cute. I know you’re all thinking this is probably the lamest hobby in the entire world but I promise you it is so satisfying. It’s like scrapbooking mixed with productivity and let me tell you, I’m loving it.

Before I started grad school I thought I needed a new planner, one that wasn’t a Lilly Pulitzer like I had used all through undergrad. I really felt as though I needed a different way to organize both work and school and my social life. I got a Day Planner from Target and used it for the majority of the school year, but I wasn’t buying into it. I would write things down but never looked at it. I also thought it was a bit too big for what I needed. Through different recommendations from friends and family, I ordered an Erin Condren Life Planner. I had no idea what I was getting into.

When I got my ECLP, I saw it came with stickers and thought this was pretty interesting. My Lilly had always come with some deco stickers, but I never thought too much about it. I somehow found my way down a dark hole of YouTube and this is how I found the planner community.

I say community because that is exactly what this is, it’s thousands of women (and a few men!) who decorate their planners and share them online. It’s honestly kind of amazing. I was mesmerized with the “Plan With Me” videos on YouTube and started ordering stickers (ok A LOT of stickers) from Etsy stores.

I use a horizontal Erin Condren because that was the setup I was used to using, but I’m thinking about switching to the vertical layout before school starts again, I think it might work better for how my brain works. Honestly no idea, still mulling it over. Stay tuned if you really care

I’m currently building up my collection and I’m totally in love this new hobby! I started thinking about it and I feel as though “hobbies” are something really lacking with people my age. I definitely have friends who sew and are really crafty, but that’s only a handful really. I know that personally, I always come home from work or school and lay on the couch for hours and watch Netflix or HBO. It’s really nice to have something else to think about and distract myself and use some creative juices!

Since I fell headfirst into the planning world, I naturally created an Instagram account to journey through the process and maybe make some other planner friends! You can follow me at @planningadayinthelifeofj on Instagram!

I’d love to hear some of your thoughts on the hobby question, do twenty year olds not really have hobbies because we have technology? Or do we all keep them private? I thought about keeping this planner decorating hobby private, because I thought people would think it’s super lame. But then I remembered I don’t really care what people think and that I should share what I love so that maybe others could grow to love it too! Leave some comments on what you think!

xoxo, J

International Women’s Day / Right2Speak

“Women were created equally, but not identically”

Today I had a wonderful experience to attend a Right2Speak lunch! Right2Speak is a new movement that seeks to give a home to the voices of women who feel marginalized by the far-left’s claim on “women’s issues.”

Today is also International Women’s Day and the same group who organized the Women’s March on Washington in January coined today “A Day Without Women” and encouraged women to not go to work…I could go on for ages about how silly I find this argument but I don’t have the time nor patience to talk about it at the current moment. I’d rather talk about my own positive experience today!

Today’s lunch was focused on how strong women SHOW UP and participate. The majority of women in attendance were county chairs and members of the Ohio Federation of Republican Women but there were also a few of us representing the Young Republican Women of Columbus! It was a really great turnout for an event that came together in a relatively short time period!

I don’t get many opportunity to hang out with strong and proud Republican women, so I always love occasions like this! After we enjoyed delicious salad and spaghetti, we broke into groups to brainstorm our message to American women and our message to our elected representatives if we had the chance to reach them all!

My message to American women was: Showing up is more powerful than staying home and if I spoke to our elected officials I would want them to know all issues are women’s issues.

During our brainstorming we discussed how we thought that doing our job and doing it well was more than sufficient to be seen as equal. We didn’t need to throw a tantrum and not go to work. We understood that needing constant recognition is a trait of our millennial cohort, but that people need to make up their minds on if they want to be equal or if they want special treatment!! It’s exhausting trying to keep up!

Many of the women in attendance were older and it was really interesting to hear their perspectives. So many of them lived through times when women actually fought for their Constitutional rights and they think what women complain about today is just plain silly. It was funny to hear how many of their families were like mine with mottos like “Buck up,” “Get over it,” and my family favorite “Life’s not fair and then you die.” We weren’t raised to be complainers, we were raised to be hardworking and roll with life’s punches as they come. I think it’s a genuine difference between us and those who Marched on Washington. We don’t expect anything to be given to us, or look for recognition we don’t need or want. We just wake up every day and do our job in this world to the best of our capabilities.

The quote from the top of this post was from one of the women at the lunch and I thought it was really insightful, “Women were created equally, but not identically”

In 2014, there were 125.9 MILLION women living in the USA. This is just a reminder that while all 125.9 million women have the same anatomy, they do not think identically or want to be categorized as one large group. We are different, we are proud and we are strong. Is it so difficult to respect the views of other women no matter how much you might disagree? Talk to someone on the other side and try to understand their perspective! Take time today to learn about you fellow woman, not judge them because they’re different than you. If you really want to “empower” all women, you should start by accepting all women’s point of views.

The Commercial Audi Should Have Ran During the Super Bowl

Last night as I was driving back to Ohio from Pennsylvania, my Twitter feed started blowing up about this Audi commercial.

As soon as I finished watching it, I understood why. Audi used the Super Bowl and it’s millions of viewers as a platform to spread an inaccurate liberal idea, that women are paid less than men.

“What do I tell my daughter,” the father deliberates in the commercial, “Do I tell her that her grandpa is worth more than her grandma, that her dad is worth more than her mom….that she will automatically be valued less than every men she ever meets?”

Let’s take a second to think about how many of those million viewers were little girls. Little girls who just heard they are worth less than their brother, who never even knew that was a concept? Why are we instilling this idea? Why are we perpetuating this myth? Stop teaching little girls to be a victim of society.

Let’s review a few things:

President John F. Kennedy on June 10th, 1963 signed into law the Equal Pay Act. This abolishes wage discrepancies between men and women FOR THE SAME JOB. It is illegal for companies to pay men and women different pay for the same work in the United States. So, I’m sorry protester with the “Equal Pay for Equal Work” sign, this already exists.

Audi tweeted that women make 21% less than men. This is just inaccurate. Women do not make 21% less than a man at the same job. Women, as a whole, probably make 21% less than men when you do not factor ANYTHING into the equation. According to this Fortune article, “Factoring differences in education, experience, age, location, job title, industry and even company, our latest research reveals that the “adjusted” gender pay gap in the U.S. amounts to women earning about 94.6 cents per dollar compared to men.” 95 cents to every dollar. Yes, it’s not 100 percent and I get that, but it’s also not 80 cents to the dollar as so many left wing groups propose. Perhaps one of the more entertaining moments of the night was when Audi debunked their own message:


What causes this “gap?” Simply stated, women are less likely to choose career paths that make the big bucks.  Let’s take education. This is a women dominated career and pretty much everyone knows they make far less than what our teachers deserve (an issue for another time!). If you add up the money women make in their fields compared to the money men make in their fields, of course men will make more. How many women do you see jumping to be a truck driver or a sanitation worker or a construction worker? These types of jobs actually make GREAT money, but women are rarely considering them as a career path.

So what is the real issue here if it isn’t equal pay? In my opinion, it’s the socialization tactics of our society. The commercial could have taken a completely different and successful route. Audi could have made this commercial all about the promotion of little girls in STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) and telling his daughter that no one told her grandma or mom they could be an automotive engineer, but that she could. Audi could have blown the roof off of conventional societal norms, but instead, they took the inaccurate road about an issue that is already illegal in our country.

Women are also less likely to negotiate their pay. In corporate situations, the male in the cubicle next to you might make more than you, not because your CEO’s are sexist, but because he demanded more money. Women, stop taking the very first offer (because they’re probably low balling you) and fight for what you believe you deserve! After you do this, tell your daughters, your sisters, and your friends about it. Teach them to stand up for themselves. Make women negotiating a societal norm.

Perhaps women genuinely do not like fields typically dominated by men. Perhaps we can push these careers all we want, but maybe women like being teachers and nurses and librarians. We honestly don’t know. If so, they’ll be paid exactly the same as their male counterparts in their roles, because that is the law. And unfortunately, those jobs pay less than an insurance broker or financial adviser or engineer. That’s life, people.

So, instead of teaching our little girls to be victims, to continuously tell them their self-worth is less than the other boys on the playground, let’s teach them to be strong and confident and curious and push them towards whatever career they want. 



I’ve clearly needed a lot of time to formulate words about the election, I haven’t posted since before November 8th. Two months later and Donald Trump is the 45th President of the United States of America.

That escalated quickly, huh?

Never in a million years did I ever see this one coming, but guess what, it came. Donald Trump is our president and everyone needs to calm down about 18 notches.

Although Trump was probably my very last pick from the long list of Republican candidates, I’m proud that he is our president. I wish him the very best during these four years, just as I would have hoped for the best had Hillary Clinton won.

However, it seems as though that idea of gracious losing is lost on many Democrats. This is why I’ve taken so long to post, not because I’m “scared” of those on the left, I’m tired. I’m exhausted. I’m sick of having to defend myself and my political party all day and all night. We won but it felt as though we lost. I feel a little empty sometimes. I hope you all can understand this. If I can easily point out the faults of Donald Trump, why can’t you find something positive? Is it really that difficult to have a courteous conversation these days?

Today as I watched the coverage of the inauguration of our 45th president, I was astonished to see upset liberals breaking windows of Starbucks and setting limos on fire. I see post after post about people being “scared” and I’m lost. I am 100% positive that NO American will lose ANY rights under this administration. Sure, if it happens you can pull up this post and say I TOLD YOU SO JESSICA, but for right now, I think people are being a little ludicrous and very dramatic. The day anyone I care about loses any rights, I’ll be right there with them, working to undo any wrongs with all my hearts.


Tomorrow thousands of women (and men) will march on Washington D.C. It’s been said that this is NOT a protest against Trump and I hope they actually follow through on that. I’m worried that many of the women who are attending would rather see Trump burn at the stake then work with him to achieve progress, and I find that disappointing. I don’t think they’ll be happy with anything this president does, even if it is in their favor.  However, I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and hope they feel a semblance of peace after their march.

I have all the faith that President Trump will work to make America a better place for ALL Americans, but I do not think all Americans have faith in Trump, and that’s fine. America was built on discourse and debate and I will defend that to the death. Right now, this defending is exhausting me, but here I am, continuing to do so.

Finally, give President Trump a chance, it’s all I ask.

Leave comments, nice or mean, I’ve developed a thick skin this election…



6 Takeaways From The Final Debate

  1. Hillary never answered the questions regarding Dems inciting riots at Trump’s rallies, claiming she wants completely open borders OR why her husband’s friends, and those who donated to the Clinton Foundation, received preferential treatment in rebuilding Haiti. She deflected to blaming the Russians, which while a valid argument, does not take away from the facts of her emails.
  2. I thought it was smart of Donald to attempt to move the debate back to substantive policy when the sexual assault claims were being discussed. HOWEVER, this will probably only be seen as a smart move by his base. Many Americans, including independents, whose votes he desperately needs, believe his treatment of women in the past is a substantive policy and that trying to move on like that is only showing how he does not care about or respect women.
  3. Trump making the connection between illegal immigration and heroin was well done. Here in Ohio, the heroin epidemic is sweeping the state. I think those communities being hit the hardest might connect with this statement. Although heroin can and is being produced in places other than Mexico, some may think that any way to slow down the epidemic is a good one. I’m not saying its a correct correlation for Trump to make, but politically, it was smart.
  4. The national debt was finally discussed! Chris Wallace asked, “The nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget says, Secretary Clinton, under your plan, debt would rise to 86% of GDP over the next 10 years. Mr. Trump, under your plan they say it would rise to 105% percent of GDP over the next 10 years. The question is: Why are both of you ignoring this problem?” I thought Hillary had an incredibly weak response to question. She stated she “would not add a cent to the national debt.” If people legitimately believe this statement, I’m worried about our country. It’s practically impossible to not add to the debt at this point, and if she wins, she’s setting herself up for negative 2020 ads running that quote while showing all the debt she’s accumulated. I guess I shouldn’t be mad about that.
  5. Trump admitting he might not concede the election. Do I even need to talk about how dumb that was? No? Ok good.
  6. Notably missing from all debates? Climate change & veteran’s affairs. Two issues likely to be a challenge for the next president, but not discussed. Interesting.



The Internal Struggle of Being a Republican in 2016

The other day my mom made a very insightful comment about the 2016 election: “We don’t know what a Trump presidency would look like, but we know exactly how a Clinton presidency would.”

I think this statement describes the very crux of the election and the cause of so much heartburn for Republicans.

A Clinton presidency would be corrupt. The already rampant collusion between departments would be maintained. The Constitution would be tossed out the window by her liberal Supreme Court nominees. Over 300 economists said her policies do not work and that Clinton’s economic agenda is wrong for the nation.

Despite these statements, I’m criticized by many people in my life for not “denouncing” Donald Trump. I sharply disagree and was disgusted by the comments he made in that video. I wish on a daily basis John Kasich or Marco Rubio was our nominee. And while Donald Trump’s campaign does not fully resonate with me and my values, I understand how his message reached those who feel ignored by our political system. So many people feel left behind and they believe Donald Trump will remember them and make their lives “great again.” I don’t blame them.

So while I do not actively support Trump’s campaign, I actively support the Republican Party. I support the very Republican economic policies put forth by our nominee. I believe wholeheartedly in the ideas of limited government, open education, an open economy, freedom of speech, conservative budgeting, and common-sense regulations. Maybe now my critics will understand my dilemma. I cannot support a candidate like Hillary Clinton, as we have vehemently opposing political ideas.

So yes, Donald Trump makes my life incredibly difficult when he goes on a tweeting rampage about ridiculous and fickle things. I cannot and will not defend his scandalous actions. Even as I write this, I know I’m still struggling with the idea of actually casting a vote for him, and I know the possibility of leaving that spot on the ballot blank is very real. I hate being associated with the comments he has made. But at the end of the day, the political and economic ideas I hold most dear, seem to appear in Donald Trump’s speeches but never in Hillary Clinton’s.

As my mom sees it, because Trump does not have a political background, many don’t know what his presidency may entail or how he may act in this arena, but you can look at the failed political history of Hillary Clinton. I thought this was a simple, yet insightful, look into the 2016 election and helps to understand the internal strife many Republicans are going through, the uncertainty of Trump versus the certain corruption of Clinton. It’s tough to be a Republican right now, but I have faith we’ll get through this bumpy ride.





Millennial Spotlight – RNC TV Director Carolina Hurley

I decided to continue my millennial spotlight series with a woman who I’m blessed to know and consider a close friend, Miss Carolina Hurley.


Carolina Hurley is the wonderfully loud and opinionated Director of Television for the Republican National Committee. Previously, she was the National Communication Director for the College Republican National Committee. Did I mention she just turned 24?

She was recently featured in Elle Magazine (!!!) with the amazing CRNC Executive Director Alex Smith in an article titled: “Not With Her, But Not With Him: The Women of the *New* GOP” I recommend you check it out!

I think the best piece of advice you can take from this interview is that she has a personal board of advisors. I think many of you are rising into the professional world and an inner circle like this seems like a smart idea. I definitely want one! (Hey Carol, want to be on mine?!)

I have a feeling Carolina has an even more impressive future ahead of her…so I figured I’d get an interview before she hits it big:

JJ: What was your college major?
CH: Double major in Political Science and Communications from Christopher Newport University

JJ: Any fun family information?
CH: I’m half Colombian. My mom immigrated to this country when she was 18 and her entire family now lives in Miami – great perk for me.

JJ: Who do you look up to? Who are your political inspirations?
CH: Besides the always obvious answer that I look up to my mom, there’s a ton of people that have impacted my life in inspirational ways. I have a personal board of advisors that help me make my career/personal decisions. People on the board range from people in my sorority to a former Senator.

JJ: What’s your favorite place in DC?
CH: The Capitol Rotunda. As cheesy as it sounds, it never fails to remind me why I’m doing what I’m doing and humbles me. As a former Hill-tern, it brings me a lot of nostalgia too when I remember old fun facts about the paintings/portraits.

JJ: Favorite restaurant/bar in DC?
CH: Restaurant? Filomena, for sure. Bar? Handsome Cock and The Brixton on U Street.

JJ: Where do you see yourself in 20 years?
CH: Running the world. Or maybe I’ll just start running in general

JJ: What do you think is the biggest issue in politics right now?
CH: Though I’m seriously passionate about gun rights and upholding the 2nd Amendment, the biggest issue is the federal deficit. Anyone who can look at a 20 trillion dollar debt and NOT think that that’s a huge issue needs to re-evaluate their priorities.

JJ: What are Hurley Happy Hours and how can people be invited?
CH: Hurley Happy Hours (HHH) are quarterly networking happy hours that I host with my immediate group of friends/professional contacts. I will usually invite 25-30 people and each of those people has to bring one person that I haven’t met before. I also bring a “special guest” to host the happy hour with me who shares their personal story of how they made it in DC and bestows any advice they have for up-and-coming DCers. There’s always a special drink named after me and my guest and most of the tab is comped. To get invited, just ask! As long as you’re willing to be social, have a good time and network, I want you to be there.

JJ: Does CRNC have any big plans for the fall?
CH: Absolutely. I’m not sure what exactly I can share about it right now but our field program is going to rock your world (and Hillary Clinton’s).

JJ: Message to millennials?
CH: JUST. VOTE. People all around the world die every single day for the right to have their voice heard within their governments. Don’t throw your power away because you “forgot” to register. Seriously, I’d rather have you vote for Hillary than not vote at all (but I’d like to have a serious talk with you about that first).

JJ: What have you been up?
CH: I recently was on a panel with 5 other women at Politicon in Los Angeles. The name of the panel was called “Fusion Presents: Change the Election, Change the World.” It was all about our different experiences as women in a game that for so long has been dominated by men. I was the only conservatives on the panel (and maybe one of the only ones in the room, for that matter), but it was absolutely incredible. I got to share the stage with a Black Lives Matter organizer, Bernie Sanders’ former press secretary, Allison Lundergan Grimes and a comedian from Comedy Central. How cool is that!

You can follow Carolina on Twitter @noitscaroleena (and yes, that’s how you pronounce her name!!)

Carolina, thanks so much for letting me interview you and even more for being such an inspiration for young conservative women everywhere! 

xoxo, Jessica