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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview

Today, I am honored to welcome a woman who needs no introduction and is a force to be reckoned with in the blogging community, Cecily Kellogg to This Blogger’s Life.

I have “known” Cecily for a few years now but finally had the pleasure of meeting her last year at BlogHer. When I met her I found her to be more beautiful in person than she appears online ( that sounds wrong but what I mean is that she is such a vibrant woman and I don’t feel that comes across fully online) and she is one of the kindest and most down to earth people I’ve ever met. She greeted me with a hug and felt like an old friend almost immediately.

I’ve always enjoyed reading UpperCase Woman for the transparency of her words and she’s always writing about what’s new and changing on the Internet.  Cecily is a kind soul whose words have weight. She is a doer in the world. She sees something wrong, she puts her back into it and she tries to make a difference. I love that about her.

Cecily is truly one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook. She looks hardcore like she could kick your ass ( and she probably could if you got on her bad side) but I think you’d be hard pressed to find someone nicer.

I’m honored to call Cecily Kellogg my friend and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

This Blogger’s Life…Cecily Kellogg

Cecily Kellogg, UpperCase Woman, DoubleGood Media, This Blogger's Life, the people behind the blogs, blogging

Why did you start blogging?

 

In 2003 I was desperately trying to get pregnant and couldn’t. Someone on a fertility message board

linked to a handful of blogs and I finally found my tribe. I devoured those blogs and the blogs they all

linked to, and by March of 2004 I started blogging myself.

 

What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?

 

Don’t blog about deeply personal things if you’re a sensitive person. I’m sensitive – even hypersensitive

– and my own psychological makeup means I don’t have many tools for creating barriers between what

people say about me and how I react to them, although I am working on it (part of this is also because I’m

an alcoholic; we tend to take everything very personally).

 

What are the three words that describe you best?

 

Loud, funny, and sensitive.

 

What is your favorite website?

 

Oh god, just one? I couldn’t possibly begin to narrow that down. I mean, I live online. It’s like asking

someone what their favorite song is. From what decade? In what genre? I utilize so many for my life and

work I can’t imagine picking one. They are all just tools for doing what I do.

 

What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?

 

Cuddling with my daughter, or hiking.

 

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself from blogging?

 

That I am a great writer.

 

How do you balance life and blogging?

 

I actually just read a really good article about this idea of balance that we’re constantly told to strive for.

I no longer believe in balance. I just do what needs doing and try to make sure I take time to eat well,

exercise, and be with my family – but sometimes that has to all go by the wayside to get the work done I

need to do to support my family.

 

How has blogging changed you or your life?

 

Everything in my life today is because of blogging. While I do have some good hardcore pre-internet

friends in my life, and some great connections with my daughter’s school families, most of my closest

friends are people I’ve met through blogging. It also completely changed my career – not always in the

best ways – and now I run a boutique content marketing agency that serves a very particular niche. While

I’ve struggled as a personal blogger – I recently closed comments on posts because of the chronic abuse

I received from a group of folks – it’s like breathing for me. I can’t imagine life without it.

 

What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?

 

In the decade I’ve been blogging, that has changed so much. I think a great blog requires all of the

following: excellent writing, great story telling, and a beautiful and user friendly responsive design. It

doesn’t matter what niche the blog falls in, if it has those components it can be a great blog. The blogs I

read the most, however, are either industry blogs about tech/content/social media or are the old-school

blogs written in memoir style that share way too much information and make me fall in love with the story.

 

If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?

 

I’ve thought about this so much, and in fact, have set up my life so that I can walk away from blogging if I

need to do so. I’d continue working in online content, just from a business perspective instead of personal

one (which is about 80% of the work I do already). I’d probably expand deeper into marketing work as

well. And I’d finally write that damn book.

 

How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life?

 

Ah, the big question. I’ve learned the hard way that sometimes other people don’t want to star in your

story. It’s an awkward dance, of course, because my family is part of my story daily. For instance, I often

write about my father abandoning me as a baby because it has impacted my life in so many ways, but it

can be hard for my siblings to hear how I feel about him. I’ve taken posts down at their request. But the

biggest change, of course, is that my daughter is now eight and reads my blog now and then and I need

to bear that in mind when I write about her. She approves every post where I speak only about her, and

any photos I post of her. Eventually, I imagine, I won’t be able to write about her at all, and that’s okay.

I’m not a mommy blogger anyway.

 

Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in

the early days? What do you love that has changed?

 

Blogging wasn’t competitive in the early days. It was, really and truly, about community and supporting

each other. But even so, it was plagued with personalities. I had a huge falling out with another infertility

blogger after I lost my twins around early 2005, and it was rough and divided our community for a while.

While today the competitiveness is mostly around the “fame” and the money, it was there even back then.

I will say that in general the level of vitriol on the web has gotten so, so much worse. That’s the worst

thing by far. Blogging is rather terrifying now; I’ve been threatened with everything from violent rape to

being reported to children’s services and more. Without careful monitoring of what I view online, I would

see non-stop messages about how awful I am. It’s fucking exhausting.

However, the good part is still the community. I have gotten to know so many amazing people through

blogging. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

 

How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?

 

Well, I obviously find myself fascinating as that is what I generally write about. But I also write about

elements of politics and culture too.

 

If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?

 

Honestly? I could list amazing historical figures I’d love to meet, but I’d really rather just have a dinner

party with my “sister wives”, or my closest girlfriends.

 

What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?

 

I’m not tough, not even a little. Also, I’m very short and I’m much fatter than I look in my gorgeous avatar

photos.

 

What’s the one post that you are most proud of?

 

This one: https://uppercasewoman.com/2007/04/19/health_vs_life_/

 

Cecily, I know that you are super busy and I really appreciate you taking the time to let me interview you. Thank you for sharing your stories, no holds barred. It was my pleasure to have you on This Blogger’s Life.  xoxo

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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview

Today, I am honored to welcome one of my favorite people and writers on the Internet, Amanda Magee to This Blogger’s Life. I had the pleasure of meeting Amanda last year at BlogHer and she has been one of my favorite people ever since. Not only was she dressed completely adorable, my first impression was what a beautiful smile and legs for days but she had a great personality so the first thing I did when I got home was start reading her blog. She’s a directly to my inbox kinda writer.

I am not blowing smoke up your derriere when I tell you that she is one of the best wordsmiths I’ve ever read and being the bibliophile that I am, that is saying a lot. She is not only a wonderful storyteller, she is an artist. She paints a story with her words and her “book” of words is better than any movie could ever be. Amanda is a writer’s writer and I am thrilled to get to feature her here.
When I met Amanda, we were introduced by a mutual friend at a function and I am pretty sure that I charmed the pants off of her with my gruff vocabulary and loud, overly blunt attitude ( just think naval officer on leave but louder and more obnoxious and you have me). Amanda on the other hand was very Grace Kelly, her personality is as ethereal as her words. Still, she laughed at my jokes and I enjoy anyone who I can amuse without offending.
Long story short, if I had been a regular reader of her site before we met, I may have approached her with a little more reverence and a lot more awe but as it stands, we met exposed in all our human vulnerabilities and became fast friends. I am not joking when I tell you that I look forward to reading every word she writes because it always makes me feel something, think something, consider or take action. Her words have weight and we all need to read them and if you are a writer, mother, sister, woman, human; Amanda Magee should be on your daily read list…just like she’s on mine.
I’m honored to call Amanda my friend and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

Amanda Magee, This Blogger's Life, the people behind the blogs, blogging  This Blogger’s Life….Miss Amanda Magee ( Jones in my head as I now cannot get that song out of my head)

Why did you start blogging?

I initially started blogging because my grandmother once told me, “Write things down. Just a little detail or two each day to help you remember times in your life.” I knew that I would not go the scrapbooking or journaling route with recording our daughter’s first year. The blog was a way to chronicle that sweet time, while also making it possible for my family on the West Coast to keep up with the milestones.

 
What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?

Write for you. It’s really that simple, because anything less is unsustainable. Now, writing for you means a lot of different things, for one person it might mean writing reviews to earn bits of money, for another it might mean writing to cope with emotions. Whatever your motivation, so long as you stay true to it, you’ll find a path.

 
What are the three words that describe you best?
Hmm, why is that so hard to answer. Me as a writer? Open, hopeful, intimate. Me as a working woman? Driven, passionate, frank. Me as just me in the quiet of my thoughts? Worried, sentimental,
 
What is your favorite website?

A site that I kind of forget and am then reminded of and every single time find something grounding or inspiring is https://thatkindofwoman.tumblr.com/

 

 

What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?

Well it isn’t folding laundry, I can tell you that. Ok, sorry, focus. My favorite thing is probably doing something outdoors with my family. A hike, a trip to the lake, or just goofing off in our backyard. It makes bedtime so much easier when everybody has had their itches for time together scratched. That moment when the girls are down and we have the sensation of job done right or a life well lived, it’s priceless.

 
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging?

That I dream in words. My love and my heartache, it all lives inside of words and the release of those words, sometimes as a declaration, other times an admission, and others still a kind of song, makes me feel whole.

 
How do you balance life and blogging?
The simple answer is that I don’t. I think balance, in any sense, is more a loose concept than a real thing. I certainly pursue a sense of balance, but honestly most of the time in order to get the uninterrupted writing time that I crave, I cannibalize my sleep, staying up late or waking early. The saving grace is that my family all know how much writing means to me and, as a result, it has come to mean a great deal to them. The girls ask me to write about them, offering suggestions and delighting in the times that I take them up on it. Sometimes on a Sunday morning Sean will clap his hands and declare that it’s “writing time for mom.” Everyone scatters and lets me have space.
 
How has blogging changed you or your life?
 

I have made dear friends, like share my darkest secrets people who have held me up from thousands of miles away. It’s also taught me so much about myself. I have often said that I wish I created something—music, art, buildings, whatever. Blogging helped me see that I do create something; I make Narnia like doors for people to slip away from the harsh intensity of life and just be inside a moment.

What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?

I think we all define a successful blog in our own way. For me it is having a clear voice and a steady direction, which really means not writing things that don’t add value to my life and never betraying the people who “use their time on me” as my daughter would say. Every time someone visits my blog, that’s a choice, when they comment it’s a gift, I hope that in some way my writing honors that.

 
If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?

Miss it. And find a new way to write.

 
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? 
We have a saying in our house, “If you have to ask, then you probably already know the answer.” I feel like I have a pretty good internal gauge. If I am in doubt I’ll ask Sean or the girls.
 
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed?
I started over ten years ago. I don’t really miss anything because I really cherish each couple of years as a chapter in my blogging tale. I suppose I do sometimes yearn for a slightly less caustic environment. Even as I say that I don’t really know who is to blame, is it the media loving to stir the pot or is it in-fighting within the blogging realm? Maybe I’m just older and less inclined to try and elbow people out of the way. It’s why I am grateful that I love writing, the rest just doesn’t really matter to me.
 
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?

Oh, I don’t. I’ve have stretches when I cannot bring myself to publish because it doesn’t feel up to snuff. Eventually the freeze passes. I think Instagram has helped a lot. I find myself getting so inspired by moments I snap and the conversations that they spark. “Oooh, I can write about this. This is more than a photo!”

 
If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?
My grandfather six times over…
My dear friend Estefania from my year in Spain (1991), I lost track of her and I’d love to hear her say “Ai, Amanda” and then laugh. Sean’s friend Andy and his wife Ali, who live just outside of Boston. Andy and Sean were on the crew team together at RIT. Andy can make Sean laugh like no one else in the world. It is one of my favorite sounds. Jenny Ingram because when you are with her she makes you feel like the most important and wonderful person in the room.
 
What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?

I used to be a smoker. I quit in 2001.

 
What’s the one post that you are most proud of?
I feel pretty deep shame when I run out of patience with the girls. I wrote a post once about a bedtime that tore me open. I was scared to reveal the experience. The night it ran Kristen Chase tweeted a link to the post.  Before I went to bed I got an email from an editor at the Huffington Post asking if I would allow them to republish the post. Reading the post I can still remember what it felt like to have her let go of my hand, it reminds me that nothing lasts forever.
Amanda thank you so much for being my guest on This Blogger’s Life and allowing me to interview you! I am so glad that we got to meet last year at BlogHer and I can’t wait til the next time I get to hug your neck! Keep on telling your stories. I cannot wait to read the book that I KNOW has to be written. Nobody puts baby in a corner:) XOXO

If you want to get to know more of the amazing Amanda Magee go read her blog, check her out on Facebook and Twitter!

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Walgreens, healthy choices, Balance rewards
I am a member of the Collective Bias ® Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper amplification for #CollectiveBias and its advertiser.

Women’s Health has suddenly become top priority in my life. Recently, I’ve been focusing more on creating my own healthy habits. Maybe it’s my age or just the fact that the older my daughters get, the more time I have to actually focus on my own health and mortality; you know, now that I have a free moment to pee alone now and again.

Did you ever consider that what you do for a profession could affect your health? I mean, we know that if you are a stunt man or a cop, your life is generally at higher risk than the general population. Of course, I never considered that being a blogger/writer/ sitting at my desk all day could be detrimental to my health. We all laugh at “blogger butt” and joke about sitting around in our pajamas all day but did you ever really consider that blogging could be bad for your health? Me, neither. But when it comes down to it, bloggers can suffer from issues with our vision from staring at a screen all day. One option is to look into great glasses from https://www.eyeglasses.com/. It can also result in issues such as repetitive strain injury.

vitamins, #Herhealth, #Walgreens, Women's Health, Health

Blogging has made me happy. I love what I do. I love freelancing. I love social media. I love letting my girls see me pursue my dreams and get to do something that I am passionate about.  It’s important to me to be a good example for my girls. In fact, as a mom of girls, being a good example is probably the most important thing to me that and just being around to see them grow from my babies into women.

So imagine my frustration when I went to the doctor and aside from gaining weight, which I can obviously see, my sugar and cholesterol levels were both elevated but normal. All that I heard was blahblahblah HIGH blahblahblah AT RISK blahblahblah.

vitamins, #Herhealth, #Walgreens, Women's Health, Health

My brain went directly to all the things I would miss if I were to suddenly die (yes, I am one of those people); first dates, driving, graduation, college, falling in love, growing up, getting married, getting pregnant, becoming a mom, repeat. Then I thought of all the smaller things like taking care of them when they are sick, holding them when they experience the first crushing blows of falling in and then out of love, the fear and excitement in the big moments, giving the gentle nudges forward when they need to be pushed in the right direction or even just being there to listen when they needed undivided attention and a mother’s unconditional love. I need to be an advocate for not only my health but for #herhealth, as well; both of them. In that moment, I knew exactly what I needed to do. My path had never been so clear. I made all of the doctors’ appointments and I made a plan. I need a plan. I can accomplish almost anything with a plan in hand.

Walgreens, vitamins, #Herhealth, #Walgreens, Women's Health, Health

My first stop was the corner Walgreens to buy myself a bottle of Vitafusion Women’s Daily Multivitamin, Gummies. These have been my favorite vitamins as an adult. They are small and easy to swallow because you chew them and they don’t have that bitter mineral after taste that many adult multivitamins have. I like them so much that I started buying Vitafusion multivitamins for the entire family.

vitamins, #Herhealth, #Walgreens, Women's Health, Health

Next, I started paying attention to what my FitBit was telling me. The first thing that I noticed is that without consciously making an effort to move, a blogger can exist on only taking 337 steps in a day; my goal is 10,000. No wonder why “blogger butt” is a thing. Now, I am getting between 6500 and 12,000 steps a day just by spending an hour every morning taking a walk or bike ride with my daughters. I can feel the difference. I can do better but at least I am off in the right direction.

I’ve eliminated pop from the menu and replaced it with iced water and switched out my daily coffee for unsweetened green tea. I love coffee but I was using so much creamer that it made each coffee have about 250 calories and the caffeine itself was contributing to my terrible insomnia. Now, coffee is a treat that I look forward to once a week (early on Saturday morning) and sleeping without the help of some kind of pill is a wonderful new bonus in my life.

vitamins, #Herhealth, #Walgreens, Women's Health, Health

I linked my FitBit to My Fitness Pal app and started logging everything I eat. You have no idea what you consume until you log it. You might think, “I don’t eat that much or that badly!” Believe me, you probably do. Some days, I found that I didn’t get enough calories and other days, I was going over by about 1000. My Fitness Pal also lets me stay aware of the sugar and cholesterol in everything I eat. In the past month, I have lost 12 pounds. I’ve also committed myself to seeing my doctor once a month to check in on my progress and keep me accountable. These are all baby steps to make sure that I am around for the big and little moments of my life to come.

What do you do to maintain or improve your Women’s health so that you are around for the big and little moments?

 

 

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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview
Today, I am honored to welcome my dear friend, Lori Garcia aka MommyFriend to This Blogger’s Life. Lori is a very talented writer with an always half-full personality and an infectious smile that shines through in her pieces. She is the woman who walks into a room and instantly brightens it up and her writing makes the Internet a better place.
When I first “met” Lori, we were both newbie bloggers who were just trying to figure all of this out. We knew we loved to write and blogging allowed us connections and community at a time in motherhood when we were craving friendships and connections like the air we breathed. Lori is and has always been the kind of person who every woman needs as a friend; she is kind, genuine and sincerely a good person who loves her family and looks for the good in life. We need more people, more writers, more friends like Lori.
Lori is also known as MommyFriend and it suits her perfectly because she is truly a mommy friend that every single one of us needs in life. Her passion for the stories that she tells coupled with her optimistic perspective, always leaves me wanting more. The one thing that always radiates from Lori’s articles is humanity. She tells her truth with wild abandon and unrestrained honesty.
Lori can write about anything and make it interesting but my favorite stories that she shares are her love stories for her family; her boys. The pride and love that she has for her family inspires me to be a better wife and mother. She is one of the kindest and most tenacious women I know and it makes me so happy to see her enjoying such amazing success as a writer, all over the internet.
I’m honored to call Lori my friend and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

Lori Garcia, MommyFriend, This Blogger's Life, the people behind the blogs, blogging

This Blogger’s Life…Lori Garcia (MommyFriend)

 

Why did you start blogging? I always loved writing and after working in an uncreative field for a decade, I decided it was time to scratch that creative itch and begin sharing my stories.  



What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger? Decide what you’re willing to share and not share for the almighty dollar. It’s easier to make these important decisions and stick to them long before a financial carrot is dangled in front of you. If you’re unclear about where to draw the line when it comes to public consumption, spend some time thinking about it. What you don’t want to do is learn the hard way. Ask me how I know.


 
What are the three words that describe you best? Loyal, kind, dependable.


 
What is your favorite website? Ever? www.amazon.com. Come to Mama.


 
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging? Binge watch formerly popular TV shows. I just finished Gossip Girl because I’m 37 years old and that’s totally normal behavior.


 
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging? Not only learning, but learning and believing that I’m not alone in motherhood has been huge for me. My stories help mothers and their stories help me. I feel bigger and bolder as a mother for blogging.


 
How do you balance life and blogging? Honestly, not very well. The two are so intertwined, making a distinction is nearly impossible for me.


 
How has blogging changed you or your life? Blogging gave me confidence in the value of my voice, which has translated to so many aspects of my life. From my career to my relationships, blogging has made me the woman, wife, and mother I am today.


 
What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same? I think a successful blog and a great blog eventually become one in the same. Great content almost always rises to the top because we’re all hungry for it. 

 
 
If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life? First, completely remove myself from the grid. Imagine all the time I’d have! Of course, that would probably only last a week or so because I’m a social being and I’d miss everyone too much, but for that week – man, that would be glorious. I don’t know what I;d do. I’m really into home renovation with my husband, so probably more of that.


 
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? This is a tough one. My tween son established blogging rules for me to blog by…what does that tell you?


 
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed? I think I miss the excitement I felt before every publish. Will people read this? Will they like it? Will they comment? I love witnessing the climb of so many remarkable blogger friends who have made a respectable career in this industry. I love witnessing success. Love it.


 
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content? The blogger’s mind is a funny thing. In time, it comes a bit of a machine, finding blog fodder in every aspect of life. From what we read to what we experience, what we overhear to what we desire, relevant, shareable is everywhere.


 
If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite? Ooo, Jesus, my Grandpa Charlie (most awesome man ever), Brandon Flowers (because yum), my husband (because double yum), Bob Villa (I have some home improvement questions), and Elton John.


 
What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you? Gosh, I don’t know. I’m pretty much what you’d expect, there’s not a lot of dark corners or secret passageways with me. Maybe that I’m a yell-y mom? I yell a lot. I do.


 
What’s the one post that you are most proud of? Probably this one. https://www.babble.com/mom/an-open-letter-to-my-gynecologist/

 

Thank you Lori for letting me interview you on This Blogger’s Life and thank you for always being such an amazing friend and inspiring writer.
XOXO

If you can’t get enough of Lori Garcia, check her out on MommyFriend, Babble and Twitter too!

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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview
Today, I’d like to welcome Jenni Chiu aka MommyNaniBooBoo to This Blogger’s Life. Jenni is one of my closest and dearest friends on the Internet and my BlogHer roomie. who just happens to be one amazing vlogger, blogger and writer Jenni and I found one another and the rest is history. If you have never read her, I recommend that you do that stat!
Her words have touched me (and many others) through sharing her stories with transparency and bravery. Jenni has a way of writing that is so raw and honest that if you are not feeling something when you are reading Jenni, you just might be dead. I can honestly say in the past 4 years she has made me laugh and cry more times than I can count. If she isn’t moving you with her written word, you can be sure that she is probably charming the pants off of you with her hilariously entertaining videos on youtube.
There are a million different wonderful things that I could say about Jenni ( and I’m not just saying that because she totally put up with my snoring;) but mostly I want to leave you with this, she was an actress and a beautiful model and now she is a mom, wife, a writer and a beautiful, talented soul who I am pretty sure can accomplish just about anything she sets her mind to. She is by far one of the kindest, truest women on the Internet and I could go on gushing for days. I know, I am biased because I’ve called dibs on her as my BlogHer roomie for infinity and beyond but believe me when I tell you, do yourself a favor and read her words. Get to know this brilliant woman through her blog. You will be wondering why the hell you hadn’t done it sooner.

I’m honored to call Jenni Chiu one of my dearest friends and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

 

Jenni Chiu, This Blogger's Life, mommynanibooboo, the people behind the blogs

A blogger’s work is never done

This Blogger’s Life…Jenni Chiu (MommyNaniBooBoo)

Why did you start blogging?
I’ve always been a storyteller of some sort, which is why I spent so many years as an actor. After becoming a mother, I think I started blogging for the same reason a lot of mothers start blogging.  I needed some kind of creative outlet.  I also spent months holed up with a colicky baby and no support system after I gave birth. I was in desperate need of some kind of grown up conversation and commiseration.
 
What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?
Write because it feeds your soul, or because it makes you happy to feed the souls of others. If you want to make money at it, have a plan on how to do it… and then be okay with NOT making money for quite a while.  Although, maybe that’s advice for writers… not all bloggers are writers.
I would say – Create a blog you can look at years from now and be proud of (whatever that means to you).
 
What are the three words that describe you best?
 empathetic, honest, undefinable
 
What is your favorite website?

The one that’s already built in my head – I just have yet to make it a reality.

 
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?
Sleep… wait no – play with my kids…
Wait – shop!
Okay now I’m back to sleep again.
 
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging?
That my words can hold more space than my physical body can. In some ways it’s been a relief for me to have my words, and not what I look like, be most people’s first introduction to me.
 
How do you balance life and blogging?
I don’t. I am almost at all times off balance one way or another.
 
How has blogging changed you or your life?
It’s given me a sense of community that I was lacking in my real life.  It’s kept my creative self from dying a slow death.  It’s allowed me to witness and celebrate a thousand aspects of humanity… and also, it’s renewed my faith in women as a community.
It’s also made me a lot less physically active than I used to be (or maybe it’s the kids – or both). Either way, I have to remind myself to back away from the computer and move around more.
 
What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?
I think that depends on how people define success. Some define it by impact… some by income… some by longevity.
For me, I feel more successful when my reach is great – when people read, and are moved to share my blog.  I think a successful blog is shared it’s because it has moved people in some way. There also blogs that are shared or have a large reach because they are inflammatory… they are the Star magazines of the blogging world, and not successes in my book.
I don’t think a successful blog and a great blog are one in the same.  For me, a great blog has well constructed or important content that’s updated fairly regularly… unfortunately, there are many great blogs out there that have no reach and are largely unsuccessful. The Internet is vast and murky.
 
If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?

I would write books… or paint… or go back into acting… or find some other way to connect people through stories of humanity. I would also sleep more.

 
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? 
I talk about what happens to me.  If something happens to someone else, I write about how that event affected me.  I also don’t use the names of my husband or children. I’m quite open about myself in my blogging, but very protective of my family.  I’m sure it will be even more so as my kids get older.  Their online identities will not be built on my blog – that’s for them to do later on in life.

 
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed?
I feel like five years ago the troll population was significantly lower. That may or may not be true however, because no one read my blog back then so trolls probably couldn’t find it.

One thing I love about blogging now is that we have so many different ways or sharing our words and engaging with one another.  Social media has exploded over the past five years.

 
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?

I simply go with what I feel motivated to write about… turns out I have lots to say about all kinds of things.  I also try to remember that they can’t all be gems.

 
If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?
Shakespeare and Tom Hanks because they are two of my favorite men. I would also then invite Nick, Brandon, Monte, and Gary.  The last four are people in my life that I feel died too young. I want them back… even if it’s just for a one-night dinner party.
 
What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?
I ate my twin in the womb.
Kidding.
Probably nothing if they read my blog or follow me on YouTube.
 
What’s the one post that you are most proud of?
Impossible. That’s like asking which kid I love more.
Some of the ones that have done well are:
 I’m Pretty Sure AT&T is Responsible for Many Deaths (I love that I got to read this one at BlogHer’11 for Voices of the Year.)
Thank you Jenni for taking the time to let me interview you. You are one of my favorite people. Keep using that big voice of yours to change the world. I suspect some day soon I’ll be reading your book. It needs to be written.  Love ya , roomie.
XOXO
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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview
Today’s guest on This Blogger’s Life, Ree Drummondis one of the kindest and sweetest bloggers that I know. Ree  aka The Pioneer Woman is everyone’s favorite foodie mom. She does it all. I’ve “known” Ree for a few years now but we only just met in person in 2013 and boy, was it a memorable experience.
In case you were wondering, yes, she is even nicer in person than you could imagine. But don’t be fooled by the gorgeous smile and the cute photos of dogs and cows, Ree’s not just another pretty face. She is a smart, powerful businesswoman who works her tail off to do it all. I don’t know how she does it.

Ree Drummond has been someone that I have respected in the blogging space for some time.

She has truly built an empire doing something she loves; documenting life with her children and husband while writing about and photographing the things she is passionate about. Isn’t that the dream? I know it’s mine; to do what I love and make a living while getting to spend time actually in the moment with my family. Go, Ree! Not to mention, while she is writing books, filming for her cooking show, raising children on a ranch, homeschooling and cooking all of that mouthwatering food she still makes the time for her friends…like filling out these interview questions from me right in the middle of taping a new season of The Pioneer Woman. I appreciate it, Ree. You are good people.
 
Anyways, I could go on all day saying nice things about Ree. The bottom line is that she is a sweet, generous, charismatic mama who puts her foot in some Dr. Pepper barbecue. I’m honored to call her my friend and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

This Blogger’s Life…Ree Drummond

Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview, the people behind the blogs

Why did you start blogging?
I started blogging on a whim one day when my husband took all four of our kids to work cattle with him. I had no plan, no sense that it would last longer than a week. I just sat down, set up a free blog, and posted a couple of photos and stories.
 
What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?
Blog! Blog often. Blog daily if you can. It’s difficult to get comfortable with blogging if you write one or two blog posts a week. When I started blogging, I fell in love instantly and blogged daily for a few months—even on the weekends. It made me a better writer, and made blogging easier and easier.
 
What are the three words that describe you best?
 Happy, Messy, and Weird.
 
What is your favorite website?
Impossible for me to choose!
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?
My favorite thing to do when I have a little free time is just plop down on the couch and watch Real Housewives or old episodes or 24 or, as is the case right now, the NBA Playoffs. TV time in the evenings is what my husband and I do together. It sounds spectacularly boring, but it’s my favorite time of day. It’s when I recharge.
 What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging?
I’ve learned that if I’m passionate about something, I’m much more creative, motivated, and efficient. I have loved blogging from the start, and since I blog about things I love—my family, the country, our dogs, the food I cook—I never get tired of it. That’s one of my biggest pieces of advice to anyone starting a new project of any kind: Make sure your passion shines through. It will show.
 How do you balance life and blogging?
It’s a continual balance. When I started blogging, my kids were all little. Now I have two teenagers, and one is about to be a senior in high school. When they were younger, I  was able to be more rigid and predictable with my blogging schedule. These days, I’ve loosened up a bit because life demands flexibility. While I still blog regularly, I’m not afraid to skip a couple of days here and there if the kids and I are busy. You have to have a little give.
 How has blogging changed you or your life?
Blogging has certainly opened doors for me. I wouldn’t have cookbooks or a TV show if I hadn’t started blogging. It’s all the blog’s fault! 🙂
 What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?
I think a successful blog is one that compels readers to return. One that becomes part of people’s daily reading schedules. That’s why I’ve always recommended that new bloggers commit to blogging regularly—daily, if possible. You won’t become a part of someone’s daily routine if you just blog a couple of times a week. When I first started blogging, I had lived in the country for ten years and must have had a lot to say, because I was prolific in my posting. Months later, after my readership had grown organically, people who visited my site started telling me that reading my site had become part of their day, like their morning cup of coffee. I realized that wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t blogged as regularly as I had.
 If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?
Exercise more and learn to embroider.
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? 
For me, it’s always been easy to strike that balance. I do blog about the people I love, but I don’t share their personal stories because they aren’t mine to share. I stick to our interactions together, fun anecdotes, and things about them that I appreciate and love.
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed?
I love that the blogging community has grown and is so strong today, so I like where blogging is now. If I had to say something I miss from my early days of blogging, it would be that my waist was much smaller. 🙂
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?
Again, I think if you remain passionate about your subject matter—in my case, family, home, food, etc.—you’ll never run out of things to share. And if your passion comes through, people will be drawn to read it. Also, I do try to change up my content so that it isn’t the same every day; I never want someone to come to my website and be bored!
 If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?
Al Pacino in 1972, Vivien Leigh in 1939, Russell Crowe, Meryl Streep, Mother Teresa, and my grandmother.
 What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?
I can put both my ankles behind my head.
What’s the one post that you are most proud of?

This sounds like an easy answer, but I would say whatever post I’ve written that day. Because my household is so busy and I’ve got different irons in the fire, if I am able to sit down and see a post through to the end, I feel like I’ve accomplished something. 

If you’d like to find out more about Ree Drummond ( The Pioneer Woman) you can check her out on her blog, twitter and my favorite Pinterest. If you want to learn about other great bloggers like Jill Smokler ( the Original Scary Mommy) , Jessica Gottlieb, Vera Sweeney and many more, please be sure to check out the rest of the interviews in the This Blogger’s Life series

Thank you, Ree Drummond, for being my guest today. Can’t wait to see you again in person, this time I promise not to body check you in the process. XOXO

 
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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview

 

This week’s guest on This Blogger’s Life is my good friend, fellow blogger and mentor, Jessica GottliebI have known Jessica for a few years now. I believe our friendship was sealed over a conversation on Twitter about drinking good wine, in bed, or something like that and we have been friends since. The more I’ve gotten to know her, the more I admire her keen sense of business acumen, her sense of humor and her determination to always put her family first. It’s hard to find a balance doing what we do but she does it and that’s something I’m still working at.
Anyone who knows Jessica knows that she is a straight shooter, loves her family and likes fast cars and pretty things. I love her because she has a giant heart, can use the word f*ck in casual conversation and still sound like a complete lady and always says what’s on her mind, especially if it’s a cause she believes in. I am honored to have her as my friend and here today. So, without further ado…

This Blogger’s Life… Jessica Gottlieb

This Blogger's Life, Jessica Gottlieb, bloggers, blogging,

Why did you start blogging?

I started blogging a number of years ago when my friend was dying of AIDS. I was raising my kids during the day and then spending my nights by his side at the hospital. I found that my friends would ask me how I was doing and then I’d burst into tears and start giving them the details of Steven’s demise. I needed an outlet and blogging became a good one for me. https://angrymom.blogspot.com Without that site I’d have lost many friends.

 
What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?

Write honestly. If you don’t have a passion there’s no reason for your readers to care.

 
What are the three words that describe you best?

I’d be scared to think about that.

 
What is your favorite website?

Just one? Everyone loves Suri’s Burn Book right? No one’s supposed to admit to reading GOMI but I have to admit that it tickles me. Also I really enjoy suburbanmatron.blogspot.com

 
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?

If you can get my husband my kids and me all in the same room I don’t really care what we’re doing. I am happiest when the four of us are together. As for alone time? I like to be in motion. I love tennis, yoga and hiking.

 
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging?

I learned that I can be respectful of people who I disagree with. Blogging reveals a lot about people that you might not otherwise learn and I’ve found that I can enjoy parts of people and they can occupy parts of my life without needing to agree with them.

 
How do you balance life and blogging?

I have a social media schedule. I am willing to spend up to three hours a day working on these things and no more. When the time is done, my work is done. No one wants to read about a blogger who sits in front of the computer all day. You have to get out and live. Most days it’s less than an hour but three is my absolute limit.

 
What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?

I don’t know what a successful blog is. Is success a large audience? Maybe financial security? Perhaps success means a book deal? Blogs are like the new MLM and the moment someone tells me they have one I sort of cringe because I’m not sure I want to read it. I’m not sure anyone wants to. Hell, most of the time when people ask me what I do for a living I tell them I’m a housewife. There’s something so inherently narcissistic about blogging that I’m both drawn to it and repelled by it. I can’t define success. I can’t define greatness. I’m not sure anyone can.

 
If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?

They same thing I do now. I’d just have to budget better.

 
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? 

This is where the work comes in. It’s difficult (and worth making the effort) to tell only my story. It’s entirely possible to talk about motherhood without talking about your kids. I’ve had a few slips and annoyed some folks along the way but for the most part no one knows much about my kids, my husband or my extended family. When my kids go to get their first jobs you will not be able to google their names. That’s the balancing act.

 
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed?

I don’t know that I feel particularly wistful for anything. Change is good. I love that short content can live on other networks. I just don’t enjoy slideshows, I’d say that’s the only big bummer in blogging right now.

 
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?

I don’t. An awful lot of my content gets ignored.

 
If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?

My family of four and Sasha and Malia Obama. I want the scoop from those two.

Thank you Jess for being my guest today and always being such a huge supporter of other women & bloggers, and on a more personal level, thanks for always being such an awesome friend and mentor to me. Your writing always makes me think and your fierce attitude has taught me that strong women can do what ever they set their minds to. XOXO

If Jessica  rocks your socks as much as she does mine, check her out at JessicaGottlieb.com and at Word of Mouth Women. but if you really want to have someone interesting to follow and engage with, Jessica Gottlieb is that person on Facebook and , of course, Twitter, where it all began.

 

 

 

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The Internet, introverts, online, social media

Have you noticed that even though the world has become so connected with the Internet, almost incestuously so, it’s becoming lonelier? Sure social media and the Internet have made it much easier to reach out and touch someone…anyone. The thing is even with being able to connect with millions of people on a daily basis, we are able to experience solitude in a way that we never have before. It’s like being naked in front of the world and no one noticing.

I guess I had never really thought of this until last night when I was watching television and a commercial came on for online university and it shows all the graduates celebrating via Internet in their own homes and my first thought was, “ That’s sad.”

Don’t get me wrong, online has it place. In grad school, I moved before my last semester and luckily the university offered a few remote classrooms which meant that the professor gave us a syllabus, we met once a week remotely via an online classroom and we turned our assignments in weekly via email.  This all sounded very convenient and it was for me because by this time I was a grown up with a full-time job and responsibilities and a marriage. But what about the 18-year-old who decides that it is more convenient and more cost-effective to just stay home and take courses from his mom’s basement? What happens to the “experience” of college? For me, that was the most important part. It is where I metamorphosed from a child to an adult. It’s where I learned who I was, apart from my parents.

Then I started thinking about it and “it” (the slow submersion into solitude and easing into social awkwardness) starts much younger than that these days. I’m not saying that being an introvert is a bad thing. I am just saying that being raised in a cyber world (online k-12, cyber dating, cyber sex, online college, chat rooms, sexting, texting, email, Skyping and Facetime) can make it difficult to live in the real one. We’ve all become so trusting in the Internet but really do we even know whose behind the screen, at all?

The Internet is an introvert enabler.

I get it. This is supposed to be progress but it feels a lot like going backwards. People are unlearning their basic social skills. Kids would rather text the kid next to them than look them in the eye and talk. People are making up and breaking up via texts and emails. School is not the same experience as when you and I were in school. All of those social norms we learn from facing our fears head on and in person can not be learned without pushing through the in person social awkwardness.  People are not interacting with other people anymore. There is a buffer easing into place; the Internet. It’s hard to connect with people with an entire Internet between you.

I know it sounds ironic coming from a grown woman who has made her living and some of her closest friends online in the past 5 years but I think that was all possible because I had already lived in the real world. I attach real world experience to each and every connection but for a kid who was able to bypass all the in real life social situations, I think online takes on a whole new meaning. I think its solitude at its worst. It has taken the humanity out of the equation.

Sure living online is easier; you can be, do, say whatever you want in half the time and without 1/3 of the effort but I prefer the real world. I prefer to face people and talk to them; hear their voices, see their facial expressions and pick-up on their social cues. I like the feeling of initiating a conversation with a complete stranger face-to-face or recognizing the acceptance and love in the face of someone I’ve known forever. I like the satisfaction of pushing through the messy, awkward encounters. There is growth and accomplishment in surviving real life that you just can’t get from living your life online.

It’s only getting worse. The more technology evolves, the faster society declines into solitude. I’m going to be offline more with my family and friends and want to take those very real connections that I have made online and solidify them in real life. So if you see me at a conference, please don’t hesitate to initiate a conversation. I love to talk to people, just ask anyone whose met me. I’ll talk your head off.

I can’t tell you how many people that I have met who I felt a real life connection with online only to meet them in real life and them not say a word to me. The problem is that it’s a lot harder to speak in person to someone who knows your deepest secrets than it is to tell the world those secrets from behind a computer screen. Believe me the first time I realized that the woman I was talking to had read my life story on my blog, I almost swallowed my tongue in fear but I pushed through and she’s one of my favorite people in the world now…who happens to know all of my deepest, darkest secrets.

In many ways the Internet has allowed us to be more open about who we really are but in others, it has stifled us in our real world relationships.  We’ve gotten lax and stopped trying. We’ve made things so “convenient” that we are missing all the good messy stuff of life. I like the messy stuff.

How has your life changed since the Internet?

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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview

In celebration of my 5th year of blogging, I have decided to start a weekly series called This Blogger’s life.. featuring one amazing blogger each Friday. I will always ask the same 15 questions to all the bloggers.For my inaugural post I am interviewing my amazing friend and fellow blogger, Jill Smokler ( the force behind ScaryMommy.com).

This is how it will work, every Friday ( same bat time, same bat blog) I will be interviewing one of the many amazing women ( or men) on the internet. Those who inspire me, mentor me and even some of those bright new up and coming bloggers. The blogging world feels so small sometimes because we share some of the most intimate moments with one another; marriage, pregnancy, birth, labor, raising children, divorce, sex, fashion, travel, food and everything in-between. It’s the greatest tribe I’ve ever had.

I love conferences because it’s a giant hug fest amongst some of the women that know me best but there just never seems like enough time to hang out; to talk. So, I decided why not interview some of these amazing people, who I am proud and lucky to call my friends. So without further ado, I give you the inaugural

This Blogger’s Life…Jill Smokler aka Scary Mommy.

Jill Smokler, This Blogger's Life, Interview, bloggers

Why did you start blogging? March of 2008, I was home with three little kids and desperate for a hobby of my own. A friend started a blog and, on whim, I figured I’d try one, too. Never, ever thought it would last past a month or two.

 

What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger? To have fun; blogging starts as a hobby – very few people make decent money from it and those who do, certainly don’t immediately. If it’s feeling like a job or a burden, you’re missing the point. 
 
What are the three words that describe you bestStubborn, passionate, driven

What is your favorite website? My own. I mean, it better be, right?
 
What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging? Walking on the beach with my kids, looking for shells. That’s my happy place. 
 
What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself  from blogging? That my path in life is really up to me.  
 
How do you balance life and blogging? Not very well, unfortunately. Since the time the site became my sole income, I’ve constantly been searching for that happy balance, but still don’t think I’ve found it. As a side hobby, it was easy, but as a job, never. I’m not sure you can ever truly balance life with work you’re passionate about, though – something always suffers. 
 
How has blogging changed you or your life? Pretty early on, I realized that blogging could be the vehicle that allowed me to do something I enjoyed from home and not have to go back to an office job. I’m thankful every single day that it has allowed me that. The lifestyle isn’t easy, and I’m always working, but I’m working for me, doing something I love and I can still be the one to pick the kids up from school every day. None of that would have been possible without the blog.
 
What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same? I think a great and successful blog is one that serves its purpose — if you set out to entertain your friends and family and do that, you’ve succeeded. If you want some fun freebies and perks and you get them, you’ve done it. If you want a record of your days with your kids, that’s a pretty awesome gift to give them. I think there are a million ways to have a successful blog, it just depends on how you define success. 
 
If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life? I can’t even imagine! Seriously. I’m stumped. 
 
How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life? The older my kids have gotten, the less I write about them for that very reason — their stories aren’t mine to share. It’s a tough road to navigate, though, and I’ve definitely learned the hard way that most people don’t appreciate being blog fodder. 
 
Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in the early days? What do you love that has changed? I miss the intimacy, I miss having time to visit all the blogs I care about and I miss the focus being on quality content rather than virality; sites like BuzzFeed and ViralNova drive me crazy. I do love that there’s much more acceptance of less than perfect sites than there used to be. It’s no longer taboo to admit not loving every second of motherhood and that’s definitely a win.
 
How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content? I’m lucky to have people send me content, because I certainly couldn’t do it alone! 
 
If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite? Erma Bombeck, Hilary Clinton, Tina Fey, my grandmother, Mark Zuckerberg and Steve Jobs. Hello, random dinner party.
 
What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you? Years ago, I was offered a job to work at Martha Stewart Living – kind of the anti-Scary Mommy workplace. 
 
What’s the one post that you are most proud of? Probably this one – It was the most raw I’ve ever felt, and I still sometimes go back and read the comments when I need a pick me up. 

Thank you Jill for allowing me to interview you. You were one of the first blogs that I ever followed and you inspire me with your big heart and authentic voice. You always stay true to who you are. Thanks for always sharing your truth and being scary awesome.  XOXO

Hope that you all enjoyed my first This Blogger’s Life interview with Jill and if you liked her here, go check her out at ScaryMommy.com or better yet share her hilarious series of Scary Mommy books with the moms in your life.

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5 year blog anniversary, blogging, 5 years

Happy 5-years of blogging anniversary to me!

My blog is officially going off to kindergarten in the fall. Honestly, every year my blog turns another year older and I completely forget to celebrate on the anniversary. I never forget my kids’ birthdays and let’s face it; this blog is like my third child. It’s been a labor of love for sure and I have definitely poured my blood, sweat, tears and truth into this hear little website.

It probably has a lot to do with May being hell month in our house.  We are booked solid all month long. The four of us, the Big Guy, the girls and I, just muddle through the entire month in a blur and then on June 1st we all sit down, put our feet up and exhale a sigh of relief.

But not today, today I have flower beds to plant, pitches to send, conference calls to attend and a garage that has to be rearranged as we are finally emptying our storage unit from back in the days when the house was staged for selling.  It’s been 3 years.  Anyways, today, I am pausing to say thank you. Thank you for the past 5 years! Thank you for all of the love and support and perspective. You complete me. The Big Guy made me a wife, the girls made me a mother but you all made me a blogger. And all of you helped me to find my dream and go after it.

When I started this blog, I had no idea what to expect or what I was doing. Some of you may suspect that I still don’t and, truly, I am still learning something new every single day. That’s what I love about blogging.  Like motherhood the space is constantly changing, the rules are different and there are fads a many but I have just stuck to my original plan; to do it all with honesty and try my best to not screw things up too badly.

Today, The TRUTH about Motherhood turns 5. I can barely remember the time that I didn’t write this blog. It’s gotten me through the toughest moments of motherhood and I’ve made lifelong friends through this site.  You’ve been there to make me not feel alone in those quiet times of doubt, held my hand when I thought I couldn’t go on and even celebrated the little wins in my life and I hope I have done the same for you.

There are changes coming for The TRUTH, you’ve been warned.  I mean you know how 5-year-olds are? They like to shake things up.  This month we celebrate 5 years of blogging, 4 years of Throat Punching on Thursdays, 15 years of marriage, 9 years of motherhood and my youngest turns 7-years-old.  I’d complain about being so damn busy but I can’t because I am so damned blessed.

Stay tuned for changes. Speaking of changes, this Friday I will start a new weekly feature called This Blogger’s Life. I will be interviewing some of your and my favorite bloggers and even some new and up and coming bloggers. Wouldn’t you love to be the fly on the wall on the inside of a blogger’s brain? Well, now you can. Our first interview will go live this Friday with Jill Smokler of Scary Mommy. Hope you’ll check it out.

Thanks for the past 5 years, it truly has been life changing. If you want to stay connected, I am also lots of fun on Facebook ( I won’t lie, I like to share a lot of cool things I find on the Internet and see what you think about it), Twitter ( I like to have silly conversations in 140 characters), Instagram ( I posts lots of photos of cute bulldogs, cute kids, nature and the occasional photo of myself with no nose ), Pinterest ( where I pin all the pretty and cool things) and Google+ ( where I am still trying to figure it all out. Want to follow me so that I can get some lessons from you?)

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