Tag Archives: blogging

Alabama Bloganistas: Let’s Talk!

Bloganista-defined

I am very excited because in a little more than one week I will have the opportunity to gather with an amazing group of women to gab about blogging — my favorite subject next to what inspiring outfit Beyonce recently wore!

via The Daily Mail, Beyonce in Manhattan on July 2 in a figure-flattering and very on-trend striped dress. That structured bag, though!

via The Daily Mail, Beyonce in a figure-flattering and very on-trend striped dress. Love how her heels mimic the trim of the dress. And that structured bag, though!

Just like Beyonce puts in hours training for a tour, anyone interested in blogging needs to put in some time learning the ins and outs of the blogging biz. The See Jane Write Bloganista Mini-Con presented by Laura Vincent Printing & Design is the perfect place to do so.

mini con graphic

The Mini-Con will be Aug. 1 at the Vestavia Hills Public Library from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Lunch, snacks and more are included with your ticket (buy your ticket here!), and you will hear from a variety of bloggers, including myself! I will speak on the “Blog Like A Boss” panel about addressing body image issues in addition to fashion and fitness and how my professional experience has helped my blog, and vice versa!

To get us pumped up for the Mini-Con, Javacia, the founder of See Jane Write, is hosting a mixer at Collage Designer Consignment in Vestavia from 6-8 p.m. this Thursday, July 23. The event is free, but please register here. And get more details about the special offerings for the night here! I plan to be there by 6 p.m., so I hope you will introduce yourself — I know I plan to try on some clothes, too, so let’s shop!

If you’re a blogger in Alabama, I can’t express how valuable last year’s Mini-Con was for me — learning more about blogging but also making wonderful contacts with inspiring women. I hope you can join us on Aug. 1!

Advertisements

Embrace Your Evolution

photo (15)

Last night I attended a roundtable discussion with See Jane Write with local women looking to work on their blogs and businesses. The question our leader Javacia asked us to consider was: What is our biggest frustration regarding blogging, writing or entrepreneurship?

My frustration was feeling unfocused and uncertain that I was taking my blog in the direction I wanted it to go, and that my readers would want it to go. Thankfully, I left the event feeling inspired and confident. I still feel like I’m just starting out when it comes to blogging as I haven’t yet turned it into a real business. But I have been writing here for several years, and while I do sometimes feel that the topics I write about are disjointed, the women I met with last night assured me that’s not the case.

In my heart, I know this is true. I know that I write here to guide myself toward self-acceptance, toward a stronger self-esteem and more confidence. I am hoping that I inspire others to feel the same about themselves, too. I do this by exploring my own quest to be healthier, to find a happy balance between working out, eating healthfully and living a full life. I examine my love for fashion, my desire to express myself through my own style. And I work on my own feelings about my body and hopefully promote an attitude of self-love and body positivity.

All of these things, in my mind, equal a stellar life. They all come together to help me, hopefully, become a better person and challenge others to do the same.

One woman at the event last night told me she felt that, through my blog, I am peeling back my layers, sharing them with others and learning from that connection. She encouraged me to “embrace my evolution.”

Those words stuck with me, and I’m sharing them with you today to encourage you to do the same. Embrace your journey. Embrace your ups and downs, joys and pains. Peel back your layers and share them with your loved ones. Embrace who you are and who you are becoming.

Kick-off 2015 With Evolutions, Not Resolutions

Last year, my motto was to DO BETTER. This year, I think I can sum it up by saying that I want to DO MORE.

photo (8)

But, as I look at the long list of things I’d like to accomplish in 2015, I want to take a deep breath, a step back and tackle each goal with a mindset of creating small, daily “evolutions” — not making any resolutions.

I read this idea in an article by Clinton Kelly in Woman’s Day. In the article, he admits to making resolutions in the past, only to feel like a failure when he didn’t reach his goals. Man, do I feel that!

I love this quote from Kelly:

Let’s be realistic. Just because the calendar says 2015 instead of 2014, you can’t go on a diet, train for a marathon, learn French and start a gluten-free cupcake business by February. (If you did even one of those, I’d be impressed.) Cut yourself some slack.

So, using this article as my inspiration, I will focus on the small, daily changes, “evolutions,” that add up, including:

photo 3 (31)

1. I will continue the monthly #stellarmiles challenges.
Sadly, I didn’t finish this as I wish I would have in December, only walking/running 7 miles out of the 25 I had planned. Oof — that was hard to admit! I could explain that in addition to this, I did do a couple of spinning classes, a couple of yoga classes, and I was sick with a sinus infection for two weeks of the month, but whatev. The point is, since I started the monthly walking/running challenges in July, December was my poorest performance yet. But I kicked off Jan. 1 with a 1-mile walk, and I plan to redeem myself with #25stellarmiles in January. From July through December in 2014, I walked or ran a total of 170 miles — let’s do better than that in 2015!

2. I will set modest weight-loss goals for myself for each month and weigh-in every other Friday.
I have a big event coming up in June — a family get-together in Florida — and I’ll state right now that I’d like to be 20 pounds down by then (251 now, 231 by June 26). That’s 6 months away, so that means I’d need to lose a little over 3 pounds each month to meet that goal. In November when I started losing weight again, I dropped about 5 pounds in a month — so I know this is possible! I need to focus on the real foods I was eating then (fruits, whole grains, lots of lean protein, very little processed foods or sweets — and very little Diet Coke!) and continue my workouts. I will report in every other Friday to give y’all an update!

photo 1 (47)

3. I will continue to do a mix of yoga, spinning and walking/running and try one new type of workout this year.
Whenever I get too focused on one type of workout — usually running — I tend to get bored. In December, I started going to spinning each Tuesday and yoga each Wednesday, and that’s something I want to continue in 2015. Last year, I also tried a few new workouts, just to spice things up and challenge myself. I definitely want to do that again in 2015 — this time something in the martial arts! Maybe karate, I’m not sure. But it’s something I’ve always wanted to try — so why not?!

4. Work consistently on my blogging and writing goals.
Besides my health and fitness, I have a couple of career-oriented goals outside of my day job that I want to put into action this year. I’m planning to move my blog over to WordPress.org so I can start working more consistently with brands that I love, and I want to look at this blog as a business, while still expressing myself as I always have, and hopefully helping others feel and look their best and lead stellar lives. I plan to make an outline of what I want to accomplish for the blog and work on each one on a monthly basis so I can make consistent progress throughout the year.

I wanted every single item on this display at Saks!

5. Organize my closet — and pursue more fashionable looks!
Just like I became somewhat complacent in my beauty routine by the end of 2014, I was also struggling with my “look.” I don’t have much of a shopping budget right now, but I need to do a better job at working with what I already own and spicing up my wardrobe with a few purchases here and there. I love to write about trends and looks that I love, but actually getting to wear those pieces and doing fun #ootd posts? Definitely something I am working on for 2015!

537994_10100162283589205_431918440_n (1)

6. Becoming even more involved in my city, Birmingham.
I tried to work harder during the last half of 2014 to reach out to new people and cultivate new relationships. Attending events with See Jane Write and fashion outings with Saks, Posh and other avenues. And continuing to volunteer with Big Brothers Big Sisters — my Little graduates from high school this year, so our visits aren’t as frequent. But I want to continue to be there for her when she needs me — and just for fun! So continuing to reach out to others in my community, and embracing all this growing, lively city has to offer, is a major goal for 2015.

Do you have any advice for me for pursuing these “evolutions” this year? What are some of your goals for 2015?

#Bloglikecrazy Reads & Inspiration

Happy Sunday, y’all!

9d2a3e701c09de7f2cfd114675ae288a

Today is the last day of the #bloglikecrazy challenge that our fearless leader, Javacia, gave to the See Jane Write members for November. I have to say, I have been really happy with my posts for November — and I hope you have, too! You might say, “Why do you sound surprised that that’s the case?” Well, I had a lot of fear that I wouldn’t have something to write about each and every day! But as Javacia reminded us when we started out with a #bloglikecrazy kickoff on Nov. 1, writing each day is a practice, and you really do grow with it as you do it each day.

I learned a few things this month that I wanted to share with you, if you are a blogger yourself or you’re trying to tackle a project that takes daily diligence. Here’s what I learned:

1. You do have the time. Some days you may only have 30 min. to dedicate to your goal, other days you may be able to take a couple of hours. But each day, you really can find the time. Same goes for working out! We just need to plan accordingly.

2. It’s the people, in my case my readers, who make the difference. Engaging with all of you on a daily basis as been a great release for me. Whether you’ve written to me in the comments or responded on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, I love hearing your thoughts on something I’ve written and it often fuels me to write something else! My number of subscribers has grown since the start of this month, as have my daily readers and followers on all of my social media networks, and for that I am truly, truly grateful.

3. Writing is therapy. For me, it’s my outlet. Others may like to do craft projects, take photographs or play an instrument. Writing is where I channel my creativity and it’s freeing to spend some time each day focusing on that and on, hopefully, improving that skill. It has been gratifying to work on that every day!

4. You mean more to others than you realize. Whether you listen to a friend or loved one on the telephone, or you help a friend by watching her kids or, in my case, maybe I’ve put into words something someone else has been feeling and now she knows she’s not alone — all of those things bond us to other humans and mean probably more than we know. There’s a lot of value in helping others feel that someone else knows what it’s like to be in their shoes. I’ve heard from a few of you that some of the things I’ve written have touched you and that is the No. 1 reason why I blog. Because we all have our struggles and our ups and downs, but knowing there’s someone else out there who understands or can help, that makes it OK.

So, thank you for a wonderful month! I’m really hoping to keep this consistency up because, for the reasons above, I have found it so enjoyable to write more often. Thank you for fueling that!

3aa43ff10490b50264e5c76ac1ad68f2

And, because I have some lovely blogger friends who have written some great posts this month, too, I wanted to share a few of them here:

Javacia at See Jane Write: What should I include in my blog’s media kit?
What are your thoughts on the Ferguson grand decision?

Tanya at All In Stride: I Don’t Care That You Hate My 13.1 Sticker
Do Vegans Fart More? And Other Diet Questions

Sherri at YouGotRossed: That Time I Spent The Night In Jail

Jessica at Spiffy Eats & Giggle Water: Winterize Your Pantry

Kelly at Inspire Fitness: Lessons Learned From The Vulcan 10k

Chanda of Chanda Temple Writes: Wednesday’s Word

Clair at See Clair Write: How Not To Live Your Dreams

Edward at Soul In Stereo: Beyonce Wasn’t High At The Brooklyn Nets Game, But You Might Be