Coachella 2014 Recap

Happy Friday! Last weekend I had the pleasure of going to Coachella, a three-day music and arts festival in the desert of Southern California. The first time I went to Coachella was in 2005…with my mom. I only went for one day and with the sole intention of seeing Bright Eyes, my favorite band throughout high school. My music taste has grown since then, and with it, so has Coachella, a festival that now brings together almost 200,000 people in the name of music and art each April.

After my short stint in 2005, I went back to Coachella in 2010 and ’11, this time with a big group of friends and a long list of performers I yearned to see. Between waking up with the sun and dancing alongside thousands of other music lovers, I was sold. This was my Happy Place. I had to miss Coachella the past few years while I was in Japan, so I was ecstatic that I had the chance to go back this year. It feels a little trite to try and describe my experience at Coachella, like attempting to discuss what you love about someone and feeling like none of your words live up to what you really mean to say. I guess all I can express is that it feels free, as if you’ve peeled back the layers of society, only to find something a little more simple, creative, and likable. Ultimately, it’s hard not to feel ecstatic when you spend three days in the company of your closest friends, listening to some of the best music in the world.

In total, I saw 34 performances, which still kind of boggles my mind. Some of them I had been looking forward to since the lineup was announced, while others I wandered into unknowingly and left a little different than when I arrived. Below are all of the musicians I got to see live on each of the days. I linked most of them to a song I recommend listening to so that you can check them out, too. :) I also bolded my favorite performances and included a list of artists I regrettably didn’t get to see, but wish I did! I think my top five acts of the weekend were Flume, RL Grime, Little Dragon, Arcade Fire, and Daughter. If you ever get the chance, I highly recommend seeing them live! Here’s who I saw:

Friday: MS MR, Jagwar Ma, Grouplove, HAIM, AFI, Chromeo, Flume, Zedd, Outkast,

Saturday: Young and Sick, UZ, The Internet, Temples, Bombay Bicycle Club, Chvrches, Julian Casablancas, The Head and the Heart, Washed Out, Dillon Francis, RL Grime, Solange, Sleigh Bells, Pharrell Williams, T.E.E.D.

Sunday: Flight Facilities, STRFKR, Classixx, Frank Turner, Blood Orange, Flosstradamus, Little Dragon, Daughter, Beck, Arcade Fire

Notable Mentions That I Didn’t See (But Wish I Did): Shlohmo, Bonobo, Girl Talk, Anti Flag, Aeroplane, Banks, MGMT, Pixies, Empire of the Sun, Nas, Surfer Blood, and Adventure Club.

My Favorite Moments

1. Since Coachella is so huge, many people carry around poles with something attached to the top so that their friends can easily find them in a crowd. My favorite one was an enormous Steve Buscemi head that always seemed to end up right behind us.
2. Making ribbon twirling spirit sticks, buttons, necklaces, and instruments at the free arts and crafts area.
3. Watching all of my guy friends make ribbon twirling spirit sticks, buttons, necklaces, and instruments at the free arts and crafts area. :)

4. Accidentally falling asleep outside my tent two nights in a row because I didn’t want to leave my friends.
5. Waking up covered in dirt and sand after falling asleep outside my tent.
6. Likewise, waking up every morning just an arm’s reach or a few steps from people I love.
7. Going literally bonkers at all the trap music shows we went to. BONKERS. I never really listened to trap music before, but I can appreciate any genre where going batshit crazy is not only accepted, but expected.
8. DANCING. I love dancing. Since there was music playing almost 24/7, I’m pretty sure my body kept moving, even when I was doing mundane things, like waiting in line for the bathroom or charging my cell phone. A couple of my friends were wearing Nike watches and at one point when we checked them, they had burned 3,000 calories so far that day just from all the walking and dancing we’d been doing.
9. Beyonce came out at the end of Solange’s set! She didn’t perform, but she and Solange did a little dance number together and then hugged and laughed by each other’s sides. It was really cute to see their relationship in person.
10. After Solange, my friends and I were high on adrenaline and literally ran to the next show, Sleigh Bells, a field away. When we arrived, we found a big open space and just started busting out the craziest dance moves we could and jumped around nonstop. We were like little kids on a sugar high.
11. I had no expectations for Pharrell’s show, since I haven’t listened to him since N.E.R.D., but he ended up being one of my favorites because of all the surprise guests he brought out. In total, he brought out Snoop Dogg, Busta Rhymes, Gwen Stefani, Nelly, P Diddy, Diplo, and Tyler, the Creator and they performed songs like, “Hot in Herre” and “Drop It Like It’s Hot.” I freakin’ love throwback music.

12. Feeling major girl power! So many of the best acts we saw were headed by women. It was pretty damn neat. :)
13. Seeing artists I’d barely heard of, like Daughter and HAIM, and leaving completely in love with them and their music.
14. Feeling a true connection to the musicians who performed, either because of things they said in between songs or because of the raw gratitude they exhibited. A couple singers teared up because they were so happy. It was just kind of beautiful. :)
15. When they cut the sound at the end of Arcade Fire, the last performance of the weekend, but the thousands of people in the crowd continued to sing along together.
16. The fact that I haven’t stopped smiling the entire time I’ve been writing out these memories.
17. Spending a weekend of bliss with some of the best people I know. :)

And because I barely took any photos at Coachella, here’s a video of me and my friends dancing.

p.s. I was a bad blogger and didn’t take many pictures at Coachella, so you can thank @hanstammy, @yungchalupa, and @trickdvddy for letting me steal some shots from them! Thanks friends. :)

Now I have the pleasure of introducing you to a couple of my sponsors!

Setarra of Quaintrelle


First up is sweet Setarra, a down-to-earth girl I’m pretty sure you’ll adore. :) She’s got a medley of posts to share, from pictures of food I could happily eat for every meal to neat ways to bring people together (have you heard of an Instagram meet-up before?!). She also hosts a fun link-up, encouraging readers to share their local adventures. If you want to get to know her, check out this or this. She’s also a dance lover and posts lots of neat videos you should probably check out. Basically, Setarra is the kind of girl you’d want to be friends with. Go give her some love on her blog, Quaintrelle!

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Esther of Esther & Jacob


I had the pleasure of meeting Esther last month and can attest to how sweet and wonderful she is in real life! On her blog, Esther & Jacob, she writes mainly about married life, travel, and anything where she can share some of her gorgeous pictures (she’s a photographer, so you know she’s got it goin’ on in the photo department). I recommend starting here or here if you’re new to her blog. She also does something that I totally love: date her husband. They have a goal to go on 52 dates this year and do fun, random things together, like visit the Pinball Hall of Fame. I’m pretty sure you’ll enjoy Esther’s blog as much as I do…go say hi!

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Planting Plants + Pot Decorating (The Creative Collective)

The Creative Collective is a year-long community building, creative program (though you can jump in and join us at any time!). I’ve thought of 23 fun activities for us to do (roughly two/month), which are designed to help you exert creativity in all its forms — from writing and photography to painting and even bartending, we’re going to get creative in the best ways! Just visit this post to read all of the year’s prompts. On the specified day, I will hold a link up here, on my blog, where you can share a blog post or photo related to YOUR project. Then, we can all peruse each other’s artwork and make new friends to fuel our creativity during 2014. Can I get a WOOOOOHOOOOOO?

Here’s today’s prompt:

Planting Plants + Pot Decorating

The basic idea? GO BUY A PLANT. Simple, right? Then, get a pot and add some flair to it. Make it you in whatever way you know how.

For my plants, I decided to buy two succulents. I already have a bunch of succulents in my apartment, but I try to stick to them as they have proven to be one of the only things I am unable to kill. *grin*

I kind of like erratic, eclectic art, so I wasn’t worried about straight lines or perfect shapes for this project. Hence, I give you Exhibit A:

I used basic acrylic paint and some cheap brushes and had a lot of fun making these to the tune of some of my favorite songs. Painting pots is pretty peaceful, don’tcha think?

I hung this beaded thing that I got in Thailand around them and called it a day!

What kind of plants did you choose? Link up your posts below!

Our Next Prompt Is…

WEDNESDAY, May 7th: “Hunting for Photos.” Go on a photo hunt and create a themed set of at least five photos. Some possible theme ideas: life/death, innocence, shapes, or certain colors.

Creative Collective Linkup RULES

  1. You MUST leave a comment on the person’s blog who linked up directly before you. Check out their post, share some love, and make them feel like a creative all-star. (Don’t worry, the person who links up after you will return the favor!…Comments for everyone!). 
  2. Please link up your posts or photos related to our Creative Collective prompt. Do not share links to unrelated DIY projects or to your blog’s homepage. They will be deleted.
  3. If you like this project, share it! The more the merrier, ya dig? I even made a cute little button for your blogs, which links back to the Creative Collective page! Just copy the code and you’re good to go. :)
The Creative Collective

5 Steps to Take When You’re Burned Out

by Paisley Hansen

At one point or another, whether it was at school or at work, we’ve all hit the proverbial wall. It’s the time when stress builds and you feel empty inside. This is often described as “burnout,” where demands feel like they become too much for one person to handle. Many people fall into a slump, losing the motivation to do daily tasks. It can hit pretty much anyone at any time, and when that moment comes, it’s important to know how to bounce back.

1. Identify Burnout

The first step to combating burnout is to recognize when it has happened to you. Do you feel exhausted all the time? Do you get angry easily or withdraw from others? Is your performance at work not as good as it once was? Do you stress over work even when at home? Are you suffering from new health problems? Does everything you do feel like it doesn’t matter? Are you simply not happy? If you answered “yes” to any or all of these questions, you may be burned out.

2. Get Some Sleep

When our minds are constantly thinking about work, and stress begins to overwhelm us, it’s easy to lose sleep. But sleep is one of the most important things you can do to overcome burnout. Many people who are burned out sleep less than six hours a night, which can lead to more problems. Eight hours of sleep is the usual recommendation, so make sure to schedule enough time for it.

3. Learn to Relax

Outside of sleep, find ways to get some much needed relaxation. Find something you enjoy doing outside of work, like a hobby, that you can concentrate on. That in turn keeps your mind actively thinking about things other than work. This can also provide an opportunity for you to slow down and have fun in the middle of a busy life. Exercise is another good option. Working out keeps your body active and helps relax your mind. In case your schedule is full, many health and fitness websites show how to squeeze in a good workout in a short amount of time.

4. Watch What You Eat

Many people often turn to food as a way to cope with unhappiness, which can lead to weight gain and other health problems. Others actually go without food and skip meals because they feel like they don’t have time to eat. This can put added stress on your body. Whatever the problem may be, find the right balanced diet and make sure to eat nutritious foods that also provide a nice energy boost. Superfoods may be the right choice. As personal care company Nu Skin notes, superfoods are nutrient-rich foods “beneficial for health and well-being.”

5. Go Offline

Those feelings of being overwhelmed can at times be compounded by technology. The internet is now easily accessible from almost anywhere through our smartphones, laptops, and tablets, and that can lead to work and other obligations blending into every aspect of our lives. To combat burnout, try staying off your smartphone or tablet when it’s not necessary. Take a break by disconnecting, even if it’s only for a few hours. Even with all these steps, the causes behind your feelings of burnout may not completely disappear. Understand that recovery takes time, and while you get back on your feet, you’ll have some valuable experience for how to deal with the same problems when they crop up in the future.


Paisley Hansen is a health and fitness writer and enthusiast. Follow her @PaisleyHansen.


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