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4 Things I Didn’t Know When I Began Blogging

Eight years ago I linked arms with other word-lovers and began blogging. {I shared a snippet of how the journey began in this post.}

Today, however, I’m sharing four unexpected things I’ve learned since I began blogging:

How Long Does It Take to Write a Blog Post?

The Time Required

Some of you blow me away with the speed in which you create a post. I stand in awe. I can count on one hand how often I’ve whipped up a post in less than an hour…or two. I usually don’t write it all in one sitting. My perfectionistic tendencies tend to hit the draft button multiple times, unfortunately. Suffice it to say, what I thought would be a quick way to express my thoughts has evolved into a love affair with the mingling of life and words. I wouldn’t change a thing.

 

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There Are Clever and Creative Ways to Cut Prep Post Time

I wish I’d known this when I began blogging in 2008. Of course, I didn’t know social media whiz Edie Melson back then either. Today there’s a plethora of information waiting to be leveraged, some of which I’ll share at the end of this post. I’m trying to cut my prep time by setting a timer and rebuffing the bully within when it tells me everything must be perfect for it to be meaningful.

 

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We Must Embrace the Learning Curves

My insecurities can sometimes send me scurrying like a squirrel trying to dodge headlights but gradually they’re disappearing, one by one. I’m learning how to operate my new camera, how to manipulate images, and create memes, among other things. All this, while spiffing up my SEO skills, has given me creative whiplash. But hugging these curves have helped me progress along this spectacular blogging journey!

 

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Some of My Sweetest Friendships are Forged through Blogging

I knew when I began attending my local writer’s group (Cross N’ Pens) that my circle of friends had eternally shifted upwards but I wasn’t prepared for the friendships developed through blogging. Although miles divide most of us, the distance is shortened when we support and encourage each other through social media. The eternal circle continues to widen, grow, and deepen. And for this one fact alone I will always be grateful for the blogosphere.

What’s one unexpected thing you’ve learned since beginning your blogging journey? Please share in the comment section.

Additional Resources:
The Write Conversation
Fistbump Media (They switched my blog from Blogger to WordPress and continue as my support – amazing group!)

 

When Trials Awaken An Attitude of Gratitude

As I bring this month of gratitude to a close, I want to share one final act of thankfulness. It will also explain why I’ll be taking a break from blogging during the month of December.

In September, I had a CT scan. It was to be a straight-forward procedure to help the surgeon who performed my gall bladder surgery earlier this year view the scar tissue, as the site was giving me some pain.

The site turned out fine but the scan did reveal a mass, which turned out to be multiple fibroid tumors. The surgeon remarked on how, if it had not discovered, it would’ve more than likely become cancerous. While not excited about what was found, I couldn’t help but thank God all the way home, confident He orchestrated the unfolding of circumstances.

As I write this (early November) I’m scheduled for surgery on November 19th. If I’ve not replied to comments as quickly as normal, this is why. I’m recuperating on my comfy couch with my spoiled rotten pup and a hard-to-put-down book nearby, Lord willing.

Blogging in December is one of my favorite things to do. I will miss it — I will miss you — terribly. I thank God for the friendships He has allowed me to forge through this ministry, and for those He has deepened.

I pray you and your family will be richly blessed as you celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. 

I look forward to returning in January! In the meantime, feel free to stay in touch as I would love to hear from you. I especially thank you for your prayers. 
 

I thank my God every time I remember you. Philippians 1:3
Every single time, my friends.

How Choosing Godly Wisdom Creates Gratitude

Earthly wisdom is doing what comes naturally. Godly wisdom is doing what the Holy Spirit compels us to do. -Charles Stanley

I, like you, have tasted both the natural and the Spirit-led. After having tasted the latter, we can’t help but refuse to settle for anything less.

But sometimes it’s not easy telling them apart at first. This is what happened when, over the summer, I began nurturing grandiose ideas for my blog. Nothing was inherently wrong with them, but as I worked through the ideas, I felt unsettled, never at peace. Nevertheless, I pushed on for weeks, believing it was simply part of the hard work required in making things happen.

A particular writing friend of mine loved me enough to call me to task on my ambitions. Were these my ideas or God’s? As I prayed about it, God revealed in a number of creative ways that the ideas I’d been working so hard on were not part of His plan for our blog right now. When He confirmed this in my spirit, peace settled over my soul like soft snow rests on gnarly branches.

No matter how hard we work if we’re not in step with the Spirit, all is in vain.

I’m grateful that the One who indwells us is not an “It” but a “Him”. The Holy Spirit is personal and active in our lives. When in step with Him, life takes on an abundant edge that it misses otherwise.

How are you grateful for the Spirit’s work in your life today? Please share in the comment section!

 

If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Galatians 5:25
{I decided not to share the specifics of my former grandiose ideas because the Lord is calling others to do exactly those things—PTL—but not me, at least for now, and for this I am thankful.}

Why I’m Taking the 31 Day Challenge

http://www.thenester.com/2014/09/31-days-2014.html

by Cathy Baker

Here’s why I’ve decided to participate in Myquillyn Smith’s (The Nester) 31 DAYS writing challenge to blog every day during the month of October:

  • I love to blog. It’s that simple. Putting my thoughts out there for all to see is a bit scary but I wouldn’t want it any other way.

  • The challenge offers a unique opportunity to meet other bloggers. Who doesn’t enjoy meeting others willing to undertake similar challenges?

  • Structure is my friend. Having said that, I’ve decided to blog every day in October except Sundays.

  • Because it’s where I am right now. The theme for my October blogging is “Join In The Dance…Staying in Step with the Spirit.”

Later this week I’ll be sharing the “why” behind the topic. In the meantime, if you enjoy blogging, it’s not too late to join in the fun

My Friday Fave

The focus of this publication may be on visually inspiring online journals, i.e. blogs, but this book-a-zine is for anyone who goes a bit gaga at the sight of sufficient white space, quality paper, top-notch photographs, and information that would interest bloggers, writers, crafters, artists, and organizers alike.

An investment of sorts. Enjoy!

Tiny House on the Hill

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