So You Want To Start a Blog? | Where to Start.

Blogging is the single greatest thing I have ever done in my life and I think I will feel that way until I have children. I encourage everyone to start one, but how do you do that? How do you pick a niche? How do you know what you want it to look like? Where do you look for pictures that won’t get you sued? And most importantly how do you consistently come up with content. Well, welcome to my new series where we will explore all of that.

Today we’re going to start at the beginning: how do you start a blog? Well, my friends, my advice would be to pick a host site you’re comfortable with. I chose WordPress because I liked that it was really easy to follow other bloggers, something I could never figure out on Blogger, however that is a very popular platform that I’m sure has its benefits. I am extremely partial to WordPress so I would say go for that, but if you’re more comfortable somewhere else, by all means, do that too.

Then you have to pick a domain. It can be related to what you want to blog about, but not necessarily. Some people go for a username for titles, other a general theme, find something that speaks to you, anything that speaks to you. My good friend from high school called her 9to5 which I really like. It can be as simple or complex as you want within the character limit. After you have your name for your site, you need to decide whether or not you want to register it. Personally, I registered mine after I was one-hundred percent certain blogging was something I was sticking with. Some people do it right off the bat, the only thing with that is you pay for the year– so if you forget about it, you lost some money.

If you decide to take the leap first thing, I would highly recommend paying the yearly $99 for the all access WordPress site. It allows you to have complete control of your content but also the benefits of WordPress hosting. This means your followers will still get updates when you post, you have a really good support team to help you with any problems, and your phone number and address can’t be found through your web address. You can purchase cheaper WordPress plans but honestly, I think the money is worth it.

Once you figure out all of that it’s time for a layout! Back in the early days of my blog, I was constantly changing the layout because it’s really fun. However, not always the best idea for consistency purposes. Find one you like, and what I like to do is make it so it’s something I would want to read. If you aren’t having an easy time reading it no one will.

Now your blog is all set up and it’s time to move on to picking your niche (or maybe not!)

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2017 Goals

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The yearly post. This is quite possibly the only yearly blog post that I have routinely written. As I wrote in a post earlier this week, I am beyond ready for the new year, and here are the many (that I will hopefully keep) goals for 2017. As I point out every year (I think), I make goals rather than resolutions because I don’t want to make myself change but rather just make goals to achieve, if that makes any sense. This year a lot revolve around my blog because other than Donald it was probably my biggest disappointment of 2016.

  1. Blog at LEAST three times a week.
  2. Go self-hosted, break out of .wordpress (eek!!)
  3. Get my first real adult job doing something I love.
  4. Move out of my parent’s house.
  5. Travel somewhere cool.
  6. Grow in my relationships with God and Jesus.
  7. Learn something new
  8. Eat better– i.e. eventually no more dairy or soy, the crux of all of my stomach issues
  9. Find a therapist wherever I end up post-graduation to continue positively growing with my mental health.
  10. Be creative all the time, in thinking, in daily life, constantly expanding my mind in creativity.

What are your goals for the new year?’

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Out of Reach

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Out of Reach.

I feel like a lot of the time I play the “poor me” game and I just think everything is out of reach. However, that’s really not true.  I am rather fortunate and I’m starting to believe that there aren’t that many things out of reach. Maybe it’s because I got some good news yesterday, or maybe I’m just growing up, however, life is good, and why change that?

The prompt suggests talking about the ex who got away, maybe it’s best that they got away. Like maybe they got away for a reason, that’s what I like to think at least. I would say that the one who got away from me, was supposed to go away because if he would’ve stayed I can’t say I would be the same, who knows if I would even blog, who knows what my life would’ve been like and I like to think that he left for good reason. While it took a while to accept, I’m finally comfortable that he did and hurt me, because the pain could have been a lot worse later.

It also mentions places. I don’t like to think that places are out of reach, the most out of reach I would say is Antarctica because it’s really hard to go there if you aren’t a scientist or doing research, however, it is a goal and I’m sure I’ll reach it one way or another.

There’s also nothing I would change to have something in my life again. I’m a big believer in fate, once something goes, it can be gone. I guess I would change things I said to people or how I reacted to certain situations. but I’m very content with my life now so I don’t want that to change. I’m afraid that if I could change my decision or change my life in anyway that I wouldn’t be where I am today and I don’t think I would like that. All decisions create this ultimate life, which right now I’m very happy with and I don’t want it to be any different. So yes, while things may seem out of reach sometimes, maybe that’s for a reason, and I think that people like me just need to push through it. Don’t limit yourself to the past and things that could have happened. Push yourself past that and embrace the now, you never know what might happen from it. Think about it!

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Dear WordPress,

Well WordPress this evening’s post was supposed to be about my love for summer nights, however, you just changed my mind.

What on earth is this new format? I don’t think you asked for my permission to change it this drastically. This is not how I like to blog. I like to see clearly what I’m tagging as well as the categories I can chose from. I don’t like that it’s so narrow, what was this change based off of?

I guess this stems from my hatred of change, I like consistency, I like to know where everything is. I also don’t like how this font looks when I’m typing. What are you doing to me?

I don’t like this one bit, however it does look nice but I like the old way better. I could navigate to older posts to make sure I hadn’t written about my idea before. Where is that now? Where is my very easy to navigate dashboard? I miss it already and it’s hardly gone. My day went from good to sad. I’m very upset with this layout.

Does anyone else feel this way? This is worse than the twitter change. Maybe. Actually it is because I hardly ever look at my own profile, but I type here EVERYDAY!

I’m not okay with this. Someone fix it back to the way it was. It’s been gone for just a short amount of time and I miss it so much.

Dear WordPress, please fix this issue.

XOXO,

Mary.

Before you go, it’s too hard to find the publish button and I like seeing my post when it’s completed, please change it back. Please, I’m begging.

13 Questions Tag

Guys I know none of you like tags but I just love them so much.  So here is the 13 Questions Tag. I hope you enjoy. Side note: feel free to check out my youtube channel http://www.youtube.com/user/marysaverageadventur/about and follow me on twitter and instagram @mrmilligan13 :) Thanks for reading!

The 13 Questions Tag

1. What do you order at Starbucks?

If it’s hot out iced coffee with either caramel or hazelnut and if it’s cold either a caramel latte with extra foam or a regular coffee with room for cream.

2. What’s one thing in your closet that you cannot live without?

Probably my leggings or my collection of oversized sweatshirts, seriously that is like what I wear everyday.

3. What’s one thing that most people probably wouldn’t know about you?

I can’t wear socks to bed without feeling like I’m suffocating.

4. Name one thing that you want to do before you die

I want to go to at least one country on every continent- including Antarctica.

5. What’s one food that you cannot live without?

French fries that’s why I’m fat.

6. What quote/phrase do you live your life by?

One of them is a text post from tumblr and it goes like this:  “do you think God ever gets sad like “what do you mean you don’t love yourself i worked so hard on you….”  and then someone comments exactly what I’m feeling “…why is this so uplifiting?” but it really is, whenever I feel bad about myself I think about this and I know that He wouldn’t want me to feel like that because no matter what He loves me and made me in His image and I should love that about myself.

7. What do you like and dislike about the WordPress community?

I really like the support that everyone gives through comments and how no one is really tries to self-promote their own blogs through comments.  I don’t think I have really been around long enough to find something I don’t like about the community yet.

8. What’s your number one most listened to song on iTunes?

The last time I checked it was “The Best Laid Plans” was, it’s by We the Living and I was obsessed with it for like all of tenth grade (I think) but basically that was all I listened to.

9. What kind of style would you define yourself as having?

A relaxed style- I can really dress up a pair of leggings.

10. Favorite number

5

11. Two hobbies

Crocheting and building random things

12. Two pet peeves

I have to many but I guess to big ones are people who abbreviate words with numbers just shorten words in general. I also don’t like when drawers are wide open, it drives me insane.

13. Guilty Pleasure

Chocolate.