In 2013, towards the end of my second trimester during my pregnancy with Squeaker, I was confined to partial bed rest. I had to stop working and from that point on, I stayed home. Naturally, there was only so much TV I could watch, books to read, FB games to play.. you get the picture. Then it dawned on me to restart my family website that I had done so many years ago… before blogging became what it is today. But, I’ve talked about that already, so let’s get to the heart of this post: becoming a blogger. Really, this is a general recollection of how and why I made the transition.
I suppose this also explains a bit behind the blog name, but if you’ve read my about me page, you knew that already 😉
My steps to becoming a blogger probably started as many others have. Either with boredom or wanting to share something or contribute something to the internet. In my case, it was mostly boredom and wanting to see if I could take blogging seriously again. My biggest roadblock in the past was consistent posting. Sometimes I still struggle with this, but I’ve become a better blogger throughout this process. Not a perfect blogger by any stretch but I think I better blogger none the less.
And it wasn’t until Squeaker was a little bit older and that I got a new computer (initially for school purposes) that I really started to get more serious about blogging. I wanted to learn more, I wanted to monetize (though that’s not my sole purpose for blogging), I wanted to work with companies, and I wanted to network with other bloggers. I wanted to grow beyond just having a personal blog. I really wanted to become a blogger- maybe even aspire someday to be a professional blogger.
So I dove right in without a helmet or a safety net.
That was wrong. Oh so very wrong.
I realize now that I should have gone about things differently because I was really trying to do too much at once. I should have waited until I had more content, I should have waited until I had a better posting schedule. There are plenty of things I wasn’t doing right and yet, somehow, I still managed to make something of it.
There were also plenty of times that I was ready to just scrap the entire idea and let it go to the wayside. But then I realized that I wanted to stick with it and I wanted to make something of it.
So I kept at it, got a little overwhelmed with a gift guide and giveaways, but I kept at it.
In hindsight, the gift guide and giveaways were a good thing because I learned a valuable lesson from it: I am not cut out to be a review blogger. I don’t mind doing the occasional review, but strictly reviews? Nope, not for me. Will I still do gift guides? Of course. Just not to the extent that I had before because it was taking over my blog and my life.
That has been one of the most important things that I’ve learned- not letting my blog take over my life despite the overflow of life that goes into my blog. I want to keep this blog authentic and share things like School with Squeaker, Autism and Afterschooling, recipes that we enjoy, my own mishaps with fitness at home, or being an uninspired homemaker. But I also know that I need to mix things up a bit and it’s all about finding a balance.
I also realized that I wanted to expand a bit from being just a mom blogger. Not that I mind that but I wanted to have a solid identity for my blog. One that truly reflected me and my life- and all that it entails. Yes, I’m a mom and first and foremost when people ask me what I do? I’m a stay at home mom. Sometimes I’ll mention that I blog or I’ll add in- I’m a blogger. But being a mom is my first occupation.
It wasn’t until I was goal planning for 2015 that I finally identified what I wanted my blog to be. And it wasn’t until earlier this year that I finally realized- I’m not just wanting to be a part time blogger. I want to make blogging part of my full time work at home. But, if you read my author bio- yes, I’m finishing up my bachelor’s degree in psychology and yes… I had previously wanted to go on to graduate school and get my PhD.
But that’s also changed since I started blogging more and started putting more effort and time into my blog. My blog has also helped me keep things in perspective. I don’t have set blogging hours but I do have time where I don’t blog and family always comes first. For me, one of the biggest things that I’ve learned during this transition is to balance my time.
I’m not neglecting school entirely because I still want that foundation, but it’s also not my end goal. My career goals have changed and I want to be able to stay at home with Squeaker and be there for Sweet B when she needs me. I’ve even started considering homeschooling as an option if I can make a good career out of working at home.
Working at home will allow me to do that- to be there for my kids and to possibly homeschool if we’re lead down that path, and I want this blog to be a part of that. There will be other things too, of course, and that will be revealed over the course of this month. But that’s another story for another day.
Be sure to look out for the next part of this blogging series next Monday: Blogging Groups- Are They Worth It?
So that’s part of my story to becoming a blogger- what’s yours?
Linking up with: Titus2Tuesday, A little R & R Wednesday, Share with Me
I think new bloggers can learn so much from the lessons established bloggers learned when they first started blogging. I couldn’t agree more that I wish I had put a little more thought into things from the beginning instead of just jumping in haphazardly!
There are so many things I wish I could have done differently, though I think blogging is really a trial and error process. Hopefully we all eventually find a system that works for us.
I love this article. It can be very difficult to to transition from a mom to a mommy blogger. You have to balance your family and your blog. It can be daunting at times.
I started blogging in 2008 when we moved to South KOrea. I didn’t know anyone there, a friend of mine encouraged me to try it. Although I hesitated at first, I am glad I gave it a try because I totally love it now. Blogging is not only a pleasurable hobby but serve as avenue for learning and meeting new friends.
Balancing a blog and home life can be very challenging. We always want to do more than we have time for. I’m totally guilty of that myself. I constantly bite off more than I can chew.
There are lots of times I still find myself a little overwhelmed with everything I have going. It is all a process and we learn what works for ourselves.
It’s important to remember that what works for one might not work for another. Also, just because someone else does XYZ doesn’t mean you have to do it too. I have to keep saying that this isn’t a race. There is no finish line. Blogging doesnt have a start and stop date. It ends when you retire from it.
Thanks for sharing this. Im a SAHM mom, too and have just realized that I really do want to make something out of my blog. Just when I think Im doing well, I see something major that another blogger had done and I get pretty down on myself. I put a lot into my blog and would simply love more followers and subscribers. Any tips are always appreciated!
I think the best piece of advice that a bigger blogger ever gave to me- don’t compare yourself to others. We all grow in our own time and our own terms. I try not to compare myself with fellow bloggers- especially in my niche. But it can be rough.
I agree…it can be pretty discouraging when you think you’re doing something great and then another blog does something better. But that’s part of life and like Kori said, we really can’t compare ourselves to other bloggers. We are here to support each other, not bring each other down. Great post Kori!
I see what you mean by rethinking your long-term career goals! I think it’s great that you want to fully embrace blogging! The opportunities are all there and are what you make it! If you want this, then go for it and you can make it happen! XOXO
Absolutely 🙂 There’s still other stuff I’d like to try so I’m not fully relying on just blogging for an income, but I do have the desire and the drive and to make it happen.
I’ve been blogging for 3 years and social media changes daily. There is always something new and learning is mostly self taught. I love doing what I do. It can be time consuming but worth every minute at the end.
I started blogging so that my parents who live miles away could see what my boys were up to on a daily basis – then I got bitten by the bug and haven’t looked back! I have met so many lovely people blogging!
I hear you! It is hard to transition from being a SAHM to a working mom, and I think transitioning to a blogger is even more difficult. It is so hard to manage work/home time and time spent on social media. Good for you for sticking with it, it’s not always easy!
This is great. I’ve blogged on and off since I was 12…but on for over a year now… And it’s been quite a difference from stay at home mom to blogging mom. I love it though and love hearing others experiences too!
I started my blog as a side project. Over the years it started growing and I’ve had to invest more and more time into it. It’s still a lot of fun!
I hear you! I made TONS of mistakes when I first started blogging. But sometimes you just gotta learn by doing. I’m not much of a reviewer either. I’ve had better success selling my own products and services.
I can be so hard sometimes to balance blogging and family life. Thanks for sharing your experience from mommy to mommy blogger.
Oh balance. it’s such a delicate thing. I won’t lie, my blogger story hasn’t changed much. I was overwhelmed then, I’m overwhelmed now. Though I’m blessed in the whole thing! lol. I love what I do, no matter how overwhelmed I am nowadays!
I actually think you were right to jump in “without a helmet or a safety net.” Sometimes, I think that’s the only way to learn!
I started blogging in 2004. I have always loved bargain shopping, therefore that’s what my blog was mostly about at the time since I loved sharing coupons and deals. I did that for years, but I eventually grew tired of since I felt like I was doing a lot of working for nothing. However, it seems like coupon and deal blogging has come a long, long way since I had first started. 🙂
I have huge respect for work-at-home moms! My mom raised me through a home-run business…
I’m so glad you’ve decided to write this segment as a fairly new blogger myself I keep there is always so much to learn. I’m really intrigued for the next installment about blog groups and your input on that.
Blogging entails a lot of hard work and well yeah, time ( something that I try to squeeze in on most days ). I guess the key here is to just keep on writing about stuff that you love and try to just enjoy the entire process. I find myself being too hard on myself on some days ( requiring me to put x number of posts per month ) but then I realized that it does not do me any good. I blog to keep me sane and it should be fun – it should never be a burden.… Read more »
The learning curve for bloggers seems so high nowadays! You’ve got a never ending list of things to do, learn and set up!
Love this, and reading your blogging journey! When I jumped into my blogging journey a little over a year ago I had no idea the amount of opportunity that awaited me! I dove in also, and had to take a step back and tweak some things! I would love for you to share this post at my new link party Making Memories Mondays happening now! Following you over from Tuesday talk and looking forward to seeing more! 🙂
Thank you for stopping by! I will be sure to check out your link up as well!
I don’t mind doing the occasional review, but when the mailman drops off a huge amount of packages that are meant to be used and review, I tend to freak out. I finally decided that just wasn’t for me. When I do them, I have very selective. You just have to follow your gut instinct. If you dont feel right about something, don’t do it because readers can see right through it.
I totally agree with you about the product review wormhole. A lot of times I get offered product reviews with no compensation, and I simply cannot take time away from my life for no money! Good for you for working toward your goals!
I went from a mom on mat leave, to blogger, to full-time working mom + blogger! I can totally relate! Thanks for sharing your story!
I think it’s great you want to do this so you can stay home with your kids. I highly encourage you to keep plugging away. My story isn’t so great or different…I like to write, I always have, and I like to make fun of me and my family…so there it is. My blog was born 🙂
I started blogging to be a makeup blogger then a week in I found out I was pregnant. I went from a mommy/review blogger to a lifestyle blogger, brand and early intervention advocate. I learned a lot over the 5 years of blogging, I wish I would have learned more before I started but it’s been a fun journey!
Hi there! I’m a SAHM/ mommy blogger too. I never thought I would be a stay at home mom much less a blogger. I got a BA in psychology and went on to get a double masters in criminal justice and social work. Then life happened and child care expenses and student loans kicked in. Working started to COST too much. For my family, me staying home was out of necessity. Four years later and I’m glad I did. The thing that motivates me as a blogger/writer is to also keep my purpose for blogging front and center. I want… Read more »
When blogging was introduced to me by a friend, the main reason was to earn extra because I was a widow raising a son. Never thought I would enjoy both – writing and earning at the same time. I’ve been blogging for seven years now and still loving and enjoying it.
THese are some grand tips. I will have to pass them along to my friends that want to start blogging.
Great post, and lots to think about! I have a lot of the feelings you were describing, haha!
I found your blog through the Tuesday Talk and I love it!
Thank you for the visit 🙂 I’ll have to pop on over to see your blog as well.
I can totally relate to this. The reviews. The exhaustion. The feelings of being overwhelmed… and, lastly, the sticking with it!
Blogging has been a long journey but I’ve learned so much along the way. There’s a lot of stuff I wish I new before starting
I started blogging as a way to destress and let out my feelings. I didn’t know blogging would grow this big. Like you, I wish I knew more before I started.
What a great journey into blogging. It truly goes to show that life doesn’t always turn out how you planned it to be. I started blogging for two reasons: to hone my writing skills and also as an excuse to document my life as a first time mother to my daughter. I love that I’m able to write things down, take pictures, and tell stories with the prospect of her reading it someday. Plus staying at home with her is a full-time job within itself. The blog gives me a perfect avenue to keep up with her milestones and our… Read more »
balancing stuff and time management is always the key and the struggle if I must say, lol.
Blogging is so difficult – there is so much time and energy spent in the beginning before you see any results and its hard to balance that around the full time job of being a mom – but spending more time with our kids is a great benefit! Thanks for sharing.
But it certainly does pay off… or at least we hope 🙂
I am glad that you found something that you love to do in blogging. I don’t believe that you went about starting it the wring way though because you learned a lot in the process. I look forward to following your blog! Xo
Ahhhhh so much I would of done differently my self!!! I just started to blog”for real” and not just posting once in awhile back in September… Thinking that would give me one year before my daughter starts school to turn this into something… And omg…. My blog blew up overnight…. Here I am in March and it’s a full time job pretty much…. Kinda over my head since I’m still a stay at home mom…. Wish I would of taken things abit more slow… And did more research since I have no clue on anything technical and companies think I… Read more »
I loved your story! I actually used my blog in the beginning as an outlet. It gave me strength and helped me through the challenges I was dealing with in life. I love being a blogger!
Thanks for sharing! I dove in heads first and was very overwhelmed (still am). I a steep learning curve and takes a lot of time. I am working hard to find a balance. I am really enjoying blogging. I have a masters in social work, but have been a stay at home mom for a few years. I started blogging, for two reasons: we needed some income for the extras and I needed a creative outlet. Good luck with your blogging.
It took me a month or so to recover from the gift guide, that was something I’m definitely rethinking in the future. And thank you, best of luck with your blogging as well!
Thanks for sharing the details of your experience! Blogging is hard work, but it definitely pays off 🙂
Thank you for writing this. As a new blogger I’m always eager to hear what others have learned. Following you on G+
I am just starting my blog adventure, so it was interesting to read your story..
This is great and very true. It’s hard sometimes in the world of blogging but we wouldn’t be doing it if we didn’t all love it! Please come share this and link up with me on Wednesday (I think a lot of Mommy bloggers will love this)! Have a great week! xx Ashleigh @SimplyWright
I will definitely check that out, Ashleigh!
I jumped in head first, before I knew anything and starting learning from my mistakes from day one. I think once that bug has bitten it is like a disease. You either have blogging in your blood, or you don’t.
I am just on my second year of becoming a blogger. You just remind me how to start it. I started from zero. I was very nervous also as I just started an English blog. I spent a lot of time writing post by post, but it is now a kind of habit. Thank you for sharing.
Great post. I find blogging so up and down. It’s hard to learn all the ropes but I am trying but I think that’s the beauty of it. Its a forever learning curve. Keep up the amazing work. Thanks for linking up to Share With Me #sharewithme
Thought provoking! Thanks for sharing on Monday Madness link party 🙂
Hi Kori, I agree with many of the comments, I started blogging in 2009 and have and am still learning how to blog, what to blog about, a niche and spending so much time at the computer everyday. It takes endless hours to keep a blog up and running, and if you take a break, you can easily drop off the radar, I took one and found that out, even for 2 weeks. I came back and it was almost like starting over, looking back have posts scheduled, however, that doesnt take care of comments and visits to other blogs.… Read more »