One year ago today, I started a blog.
I set up my first photo shoot, wrote my first post and clicked “Publish” for the very first time.
Then I had a moment of panic when I thought “what have I done?!” But just a moment. And then I just kept moving forward and haven’t looked back since.
And here we are, 365 days later; 500+ readers and 100+ published posts.
Milestones are often a time of reflection. And this one is no different. I’ve been thinking a lot about all that has changed since I put “me” out there and became a blogger.
Before blogging …
I slept more.
I sat down to hot meals that didn’t require a photo session prior to consumption.
No body asked who was going to get the “pretty plate”.
I never got a strange look from the cashier as she rang up one patterned plate, one white soup bowl, one blue placemat, one green placemat and a mismatched assortment of napkins.
I didn’t look at “everything” as a potential background, table setting or prop.
I made fewer trips to the antique store, thrift store or neighborhood garage sales.
And I didn’t have this …
which has affectionately become know as my “prop hoard”.
There have also been a few “blogging truths” I’ve discovered along the way …
You can consider someone a friend even though you have never met.
You don’t have to write the great American novel in each post. Simple and short is just fine.
Don’t just write. Read too. And comment. The blogging Community is amazing. Engage.
Laundry, dishes and toilets don’t just do themselves simply because you want to write.
Kids aren’t quiet and well behaved simply because you want to write.
Because laundry, dishes and toilets don’t do themselves and kids aren’t quiet and well behaved because you want to write, you will find yourself writing at 4 am.
And sleeping less. Did I mention that already?
Food blogging is fattening. Sighhhh.
You can make a beautiful office for yourself, tucked away in a peaceful corner of the house and you will still write at the dining room table.
You will end up turning that beautiful, peaceful office into storage for your prop hoard and cookbook/magazine problem.
You have to throw out the plan or schedule and write what inspires you in the moment or it will never leave you alone.
Don’t be perfect. Be real. People don’t connect with perfect.
Sometimes you will post five times in a week. Sometimes two weeks will go by and you won’t have written a thing. It’s okay.
Blogging is supposed to be fun. Don’t let it become anything else.
The magazine and cookbook problem you have is only going to get worse.
And you’ll start to feel like you could open your own library. You may even find yourself on a first name basis with the UPS guy who is bringing yet another Amazon box to your front door.
That Amazon box, there will most assuredly be a “For Dummies” book of some sort in there.
Food photography is so much fun! Even when you have no idea what you’re doing. Don’t worry! There’s a “For Dummies” book for it.
Don’t compare. You have your own voice and your own style. Be inspired but be you!
Don’t worry about the numbers, the stats, the hits, etc. Write because you want to preserve and share. Write because you want to encourage and inspire. Write for whatever reason you first thought “maybe I should start a blog.”
Blog because you love it and others will love it too.
Since I started blogging, I notice the little things more. The details. I love that I am reconnecting with my grandmothers and the family that came before me as I share their recipes and stories. I am preserving memories and history for my children. And I making new friends and hopefully offering a little inspiration and encouragement along the way.
I remember one Saturday morning, around 4am, my husband walked bleary eyed into the dining room as I typed away. He took one look at me and said “you’re crazy! I love you but, you’re crazy.”
Sometimes at 4am, the thought does occur to me “I must be crazy” – but I just keep typing away. Nope, not crazy just fulfilled and happy and loving every minute of this wonderful adventure that is blogging.
Okay, well the prop hoard is a little crazy …
Thanks to everyone who reads and visits me here at Welcome Company or on Facebook. You have made this first year so much fun and I am incredibly blessed by each “like” and comment and every bit of encouragement you give.
There are a lot of ideas and plans swirling around in my head for the direction I’d like to take this little blog. And there are also dishes that need washed, toilets that need cleaning, laundry that needs folding and a family that always needs their mama. There is event planning, Cub Scouts, PTO, yearbook committee, classroom mom duties, cake requests, etc., etc. that need my attention – which is why I have recently placed this …
on the windowsill in front of the sink, where I am sure to see it often (food blogging also makes a lot of dirty dishes) and in need of a reminder that I am a little crazy when it comes to over committing.
Thankfully, no matter how busy I get, my blog is always here waiting for me and I am always eager to get that next post put together. Someday, I may catch up and all of those ideas may come to fruition. It could happen. Until that day, thanks for hanging in there with me and for reading when I post 5x in a week or being patient when two weeks go by.
I promise you, there will always be a next post.
One day at a time. One inspiration at a time.
Now, I am going to go bake a cake. It is my blog’s birthday after all. There must be cake.