Friday, May 29, 2015

Two Whole Years of Semi-Regular Blogging! What Now?

You guys. My blog is two years old.

Two years of reading my hilarious prose. Two years of absorbing my magnificent, melodic composition. Two years of sopping up whatever jacked-up issues I'm dealing with, whatever jerk projects I've got going on, and whatever flaw-filled lessons I've learned.

Thank you.

Last year, I evaluated how well I was doing with my blogging goals. This year I've added a couple new goals. Why blog? Why keep this thing going? Well let's get down and dirty with it, shall we?

Write to feel better
Jen Grade: A
I absolutely love writing this blog. Seeing my words in print, cemented out there for anyone to see, gives me a huge adrenaline boost. It's awesome. And the topics help me stay focused. I write myself through my issues. Sometimes these blog posts are quite literally my first moment of clarity during a tricky situation. Other times these posts are intended to help me did this, Jen. This is something you accomplished. It's awesome. Totally makes me feel better.

Write to practice
Jen Grade: B
When I look at posts I created back in 2013, and compare them to posts I'm writing today, I definitely see a difference in my sentence structure. My clarity. A reduction of verbosity. Not to mention, I started a novel last year. I've been editing it since January. I'm practicing, all right. Not all the time. I skip days. I've skipped book editing for a while now. But I keep something coming, no matter how rough stuff gets. I am still practicing. And for the first time, I'm seeing improvement.

Stay away from monetizing
Jen Grade: A
Still not making a penny from this blog. Not one cent. Sometimes I second guess this goal. Maybe I'm being a total idiot. Maybe making money here would allow me to feel more free in other areas. But maybe making money here would make me feel less free here. No tellin' what could happen, which is why I stay pretty stagnant in this area.

Stay positive
Jen Grade: B
I've gotten better with this goal this year. Despite the numerous things I sometimes want to whine about online, I am sticking to things that are primarily informational, funny, positive, or useful. It keeps me positive, ya digg?

Don't be scared
Jen Grade: A
Again, I'm getting way better with this. I care less and less what my friends, family, and general public think about what I write....and maybe that's because I'm finally coming up with things people actually enjoy reading! I've received some really lovely feedback this year from a number of readers and I can't tell you how happy that makes me. I'm less afraid now than I have been in many, many years.

Now for some of those new goals...

Expand my reading and my audience
Jen Grade: F-
I'd like to have some new blogs to check in with each week. Have any blog friends you'd like to share? I'm talking the real friends - people who you love to read and who love to read you. I'd love to check them out! I've done nothing to help myself along with this goal. I've pretty much abandoned my blogging groups (they are so huge and overwhelming sometimes!) and spend my free time checking in with my regular blog loves. It's time to branch out a little more!

Revamp my blog site
Jen Grade: F--
I've had the same standard blogger template for the past two years. I've tweaked stuff in the sidebar, but what I'd really like to do is hire someone to create a beautiful blog site for me. I'm fine with keeping the .blogspot in my name....but I'd love a new look. Again, if you have any whimsical blog design friends, let me know! I'm in the market!

Head on back and watermark those old pics
Jen Grade: F
Man I am not nailing these new goals at all. I have some older posts with pics that need watermarks. I have some old posts with pics that need to be resized. I'd love to take the time sometime in the next 12 months to get that shizza cleaned up. Pro-style!

Create a separate page or section on my blog to discuss my homesteading adventures
Jen Grade: F
I really love talking about all the sweet new stuff I'm learning and the adventures I'm heading into these days.....enough to maybe make it a separate space on my blog. The crunchy life can be twisted to sorta match, but isn't exactly inline with my original theme (stories and lessons about my flaws, forgiven). I just can't stop writing about my little nature lessons, though, because I love maybe a separate section is where it's at. What do you guys think?

And of course, no anniversary post would be complete without a blast from the past! Here are some of my favorite posts (in order from oldest to most recent....can you tell a difference??):

Video Games for Hott Chicks, Working Women, and Moms

Grass Fed Beef 101

Crazy Hooker to Crazy...Homemaker?

10 Surprising Facts about Working from Home

Is the Crunchy Life Worth it?

8 Things I Learned in 8 Years of Marriage

7 Truths I Want My Kids to Understand

Any other goals you'd add up there? How do you feel about changing things up around here? If you blog, what are some of your goals for the season? Tell me all about it in the comments down below! This wouldn't be nearly as fun without you guys. I thank you for reading, for your comments, for pulling me aside and telling me that you read my blog because honestly that makes my heart explode with happiness more than anything else in the world


  1. HAPPY BLIRTHDAY!!!! :) I'll be 2 in September, WOOP! :) Man I need to get myself more into networking but I agree it's SUPER exhausting and time consuming. I can't focus on all these aspects which is why I am asking for suggestions on my blog today Lol. I actively try to find groups in the area to network with local bloggers because I'm trying to connect with people in person who do this for more accountability and just connections. Most of the groups around here are fashion groups - boo!!! Ah well.. Lol. Get your site revamped chicka it's SOO much fun changing layouts! :) Have a great one and I better see you around here for more than another year! Take Care Jen! -Iva

    1. Haha thank you Iva!! The networking piece is probably the least fun for's hard to find good readers and writers - most often I just end up reading 1000 blogs and never getting anything done! HAHA! And yes - the fashion blogs (while obvs on point) do seem to be the popular choice these days! I am, flannel and white tank tops kinda rule my wardrobe. Thanks for the feedback! I think I'm gonna hire a designer :) :) :) Have an awesome weekend!

  2. Man, the thought of going back over all my old posts and fixing pictures and making them 'pro' frightens me. Never!!!!! Way too scary. There's just too much work to be done, so I won't do any of it.
    Happy 2 years to you! I also find blogging to be excellent writing practice.

  3. Happy 2 years. You are doing great. I love your stories. They are so real and honest. I've scaled back a bit on my blog. My husband won't allow me to write about the financial mistakes his sister made and how we have to bail them out. I can't write about his health issues and I don't feel comfortable writing about the temp I just fired - yet. Great goals too.