Blogger Recognition Award
I’m excited to say that Magnets from Everywhere has been nominated for the Blogger Recognition Award! A big thank you to Maria from Dapper House Designs for the nomination! Hop on over to her site for a great blog on home decor, DIY, and organization.
The Blogger Recognition Award is basically a big group hug for bloggers! Each nominee has to do a couple of things to accept the award:
- Thank the nominating blogger. (Thanks again Maria!)
- Write a post about the award. (You’re reading it!)
- Share the story of how and why I started the blog.
- Offer at least two pieces of advice for new bloggers.
- Pass on the nomination to another 15 bloggers.
- Respond to the nominating blogger with a link to this post on their blog.
So how did Magnets from Everywhere get started?
Over the Thanksgiving break this last year we found ourselves in California for the holiday. We had originally planned the trip to see family, but the opportunity to interview at a couple companies had come up and those got added to our itinerary. We spent a lot of time that weekend driving between family and friends and had a lot of time in the car to talk.
Moving to California was certainly a topic of discussion, but it wasn’t something we were taking seriously. Chris had a great job and we had family in NC. The do-nothing option was very appealing.
What we talked about seriously was the direction my career was going. I had been working for the same company since graduating 5.5 years prior. I was an engineer, making good money, respected at my job, had lots of flexibility, and I was unhappy. We had been talking about me quitting for awhile but could never make traction towards it because we didn’t know what else I would do. It almost seemed like a decision that couldn’t be made without outside influences. I kept hoping that something would happen to force my hand one way or the other, but it never did.
I still don’t know what was different about the conversation we had driving around San Francisco, but somehow we decided that I was going to stay home with the kids. We had noticed that over the vacation I was much more relaxed with the children. We had more fun together, despite the difficulties associated with travel. We had a hunch that stress with work was causing my stress at home.
Wednesday morning I went home and told my boss. He wasn’t surprised and we made arrangements for me to serve notice for the month of December.
My family couldn’t believe I had actually done it. I felt awkward the whole month, but also free and happy. The #1 worst part of it was letting our nanny go. I still get tears in my eyes when I think about it.
That same day Chris came home from his interview glowing. He’d met so many cool people working on amazing projects and eating ridiculous food all day long. He was happy at his job, but this was an opportunity to try something new and exciting.
A week later he was offered the job. If I was still planning to work the decision would have been agonizing. We would have fought, we would have stressed, and I’m not sure which way we would have ended up. God’s timing is perfect though and the only question to ask was: do you want to take this job?
He requested a late start date and we found ourselves with 2.5 months to serve notices with both companies, celebrate Christmas, go on a family vacation, pack up, and move.
The first month of my stay-at-home-mom journey didn’t really count. I had so much to do and the grandparents were so eager to spend time with the kids that I only spent marginally more time with them during the days. Somewhere amidst that whirlwind of packing, I formulated the idea of this blog. I had thought of doing some contract writing and this would be a great way to generate a portfolio. I started a WordPress blog with the intention of posting once the dust settled.
The dust has now settled, I’ve written 80 posts, and we are happily situated in California soaking up the sunshine. I am pouring myself into this blog and have learned so much about SEO, WordPress, and social media. I have barely scratched the surface and the more I dig the more there is to learn! The idea of contract writing has pretty much gone out the window. I love my little blog and I’m not willing to split my time with someone else, even if they did pay me!
To date, I have made $0.43 from my blog (woohoo!!!) but I’m optimistic that I can turn this into a profitable business. I’m smart, I’m learning, and I’m excited! What could go wrong?
The absolute best part of this blog is it pushes me in life. The kids and I have done so much hiking these last couple months, I’m making an effort to get to the beach at least once a week, and I’m staying inspired by other bloggers in the community. The blog is also keeping me sharp and giving me goals to work towards.
Advice for New Bloggers
- If you haven’t started your blog yet, go for self-hosted right out of the gate. My biggest blogging frustration was making the switch from wordpress.com to wordpress.org. I remember wanting to tear my hair out because my site wasn’t working and saying, “I only have 9 readers, I can’t lose them!” Even if your end goal isn’t to get rich off your blog, you will want monetization to be within your control, and you need to be self-hosted for that.
- Pace yourself! Don’t try to tackle posting, SEO, Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram all at once. Grab your usernames on all those accounts, but feel free to let them sit. Start with the social media platform you like the most. The more you enjoy it the more natural your engagement will be and the more successful you’ll be. There’s a lot to learn, but it’s better to be started and creeping forward, then stalling out of the gate.
The Next Round of Blogger Recognition Nominees
Take a look at each of these blogger’s sites. They come from all over the world and each offers a unique perspective on travel, food, parenting, blogging, or life!
Connie is a Mom blogger based out of Atlanta. She blogs about faith, fashion, travel, and living in Atlanta.
Wendy is based in NYC but originally from the Dominican Republic. She uses visual storytelling to blog about beauty and fashion.
Clare and Erika share this blog about fashion, lifestyle, and travel. They offer a country-wide perspective, being based out of Milwaukee and Phoenix.
Saidy in a Houston based travel and lifestyle blogger. Her site is full of incredible pictures!
Stephanie offers services for bloggers and online businesses to help with marketing. If you can’t swing paying for help right now, her blog is full of free useful tips and perspective.
Priya is a Mom blogger who blogs about DIY projects, recipes, and travel. She also throws in the occasional post on business and blogging.
Linda is an Italian food blogger living in Brussels. She posts yummy recipes with great pictures!
Allie is a California blogger with a lifestyle blog. Her tagline is “eat good food. make pretty things. practice radical self love.”
Maria is a fashion and design blogger in Vancouver. She has beautiful fashion and style pictures and offers interior design services.
Melissa is a food and baking blogger with drool-worthy pictures of her recipes. She also blogs about travel and home.
Dani is a novelist living in Wales who started this blog to help female writers. She gives book suggestions, writer profiles, writing tips, and challenges.
Christie is a young blogger living all over the world. She’s originally from Boston and she blogs about her adventures and travel.
Katharina is a student blogger from Germany who writes about her travels, studies abroad, and her time as an au pair.
Tara is a food blogger with a great background in the food publishing industry. As a result, her recipes and pictures look fantastic!
Shamira is a travel and fashion blogger from the Phillippines and Ireland. She travels and dresses on a budget and share pictures and stories from her adventures.
I looked through over 50 blogs to come up with these 15. Make sure you check them out!