I Never Meant to Start Blogging, But…

I’m glad I did.

 

When I tell people about all the amazing opportunities I have had blogging while staying at home with the kids, the natural question that follows is, “how did you get started?” Sometimes it is a “why did you start a blog?” from those who are considering it themselves and want some beginner guidance. You know what? I don’t really know how it all started, but I do know that I never planned on it.

Do you want to know the honest to goodness truth about why I started blogging? I’ll tell you.

Shutterfly.

That’s right. I had this crazy obsession with Shutterfly photo gifts after my first son was born. And by obsession, I mean I basically did their customer service on their Facebook page, researched codes all the time to get insane deals, and had orders coming in left and right.

So…what then? I guess I never really explained how Shutterfly made me start blogging. Well…

It all started with a code. Since I was the “Shutterfly queen” and I did not have much money to spend, I was always on the prowl for new discount codes. This one, however, had a catch.

You had to embed your latest project ON A BLOG POST.

Annnnd…there was my dilemma. I didn’t have a blog. I didn’t plan on starting a blog. But I wanted that code.

So?

I started a blog. My original blog was called something like “Life Like Ants.” I wanted to share a zoomed out picture of what my life was like, from our financial struggles to our newborn adventure.

The past five years were not what I had planned. I never planned to start blogging, but I'm glad I did. Read where I've come from and where I'm headed.Ya, that didn’t go very far. I wrote a handful of posts then ended up starting a few others after that one. Finally I started my blog Dealy Os. It started as a site to simply share my Shutterfly deals, but that was not very substantial so I started posting about all types of deals…a coupon blog. It suited me, since I was a certified “coupon queen.”

I ran that blog for a couple years, somehow started reviewing products and met a ton of other great bloggers along the way.

Unfortunately, I eventually got burnt out. However, I realized I really did like blogging, so I was not ready to give up just yet.

I needed a change of direction. A new “blogging purpose.”

What now? Do I change my blog name and start changing how and what I post? Do I scrap it all and start from scratch?

I was so done with my old blog that I decided to start completely from scratch with this blog, Arts & Crackers.

Those who know me well know that I have a wide variety of talents. I’m a “Jill of all trades” as people say, and not overly-great at any one thing. I get bored of things fairly quickly and that is why I love this blog so much.

While I may not have a specific “niche” that I stick to, like food or preschool education, I love to share anything and everything I feel may be useful for fellow parents. This means I can enjoy sharing crafts I create, recipes I cook, parties I host…whatever is my “in” thing at the time.

I do need to be more organized. That’s my goal for this year.

Who would have thought a blogger, who really did not start for any noble reason like “to make extra income” or “to journal an important event” or “because I love to write” would be where I am today?

I turned a discount into hobby and that hobby into a “jobby.” That means it’s a business now, as I do a lot of freelance work and monetizing to support my family (more accurately, save up money to get our very own house some day), but it is still something I love to keep up with in my free time because it is just fun.

Over the past 5 years I have been blogging, I have learned so much, made new friends all over the world (and even met some in person), gone on paid trips to NYC, worked with loads of brands…never did I imagine my future would hold all of this and it excites me to see where my website heads over the coming years!

So I want to thank you, as the readers, for your support. Thank you for reading, for commenting, for sharing. Thank you for clicking around, using my affiliate links, and just being awesome. You keep me going and I hope I can continue to bring you more and more useful information, fun ideas, and delicious recipes!

I would love to hear from you in the comments below–What is your favorite topic I share about on my site? Do you have any questions for me? Have you ever considered starting a blog (or do you already have one)?


Behind the Blog Logo GraphicThis post is a part of the Behind the Blog Series! I will be joining other bloggers in sharing a little of my “behind the scenes” each month for the whole year! Visit these lovely bloggers below to read their posts then come back and visit each month to read on the topics in the graphic below!

  • Three Years of Blogging–How did it all begin? (Smart Girls DIY)
  • Behind the Blog Series By MonthKnow someone who would love this? Hit the “share” buttons below! Be sure to follow Arts & Crackers on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, or the others at the top right!

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    Written by Alyssa Darby

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    9 Comments

    1. How neat that this all started with wanting a coupon code from Shutterfly, and now you’ve turned it into something amazing! I’m with you on not being able to settle into one niche. I LOVE way too many things to just blog about one.

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    3. I’m a new reader (and one of your fellow series participants), but I really enjoyed reading about your start and hearing how you like to do several things on your blog. That makes me really happy, and I kind of love that you got your start with Shutterfly. So random and fun!

    4. I love shutterfly too! … What a great story! And I love that you evolved. Can’t wait to read more!

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