Happy Birthday, Blog! And to pat myself on the back a little, congrats to me for writing for a whole year! This past year has been one with probably the most amount of change I have ever had in one year. I went from living in an apartment in Portland, running an Etsy shop, and writing this blog about crafts, food, travel, etc to now living in our self converted van (currently in Austin, TX), working as a wellness coach online, and writing about the van, life on the road, and a chronicle of our adventures. But even with all of that change, many things have also stayed consistent, one of them being writing this blog.
When I started this blog, my idea was to share my passions with the world, I just didn’t know how much the passions I showed you would change. Travel has been a large part of my life since middle school. I remember trips with my dad to Washington, D.C., New York City, the Grand Canyon, Canada, Japan, France, and Italy. It was these trips that made me realize that studying abroad in college was non-negotiable to me. It was going to happen, no matter what. In fact, I actually picked my university in the end based on their study abroad program (I wouldn’t recommend anyone doing that, but it ended up working out well for me). So, transforming from a stationary life in the Pacific Northwest to living in a new city every few weeks has really been me living the life I knew I wanted all along, going back to who I was and who I want to be, and finding myself. And I think that has been reflected in the content on this blog, or at least I hope it has. So, to celebrate the one year birthday of the blog, I wanted to share a few highlights with you.
Favorite articles to write:
Most popular articles:
What I love about blogging/writing:
I have been writing articles for a few years now. I started my writing career as a part-time thing for my dad writing about the job application and interview process. I wrote an article a week for him for about a year or so before moving on from that topic and eventually moving to this blog. Writing for me is just another form of expression. I am an emotional and creative person and I tend to express my emotions best through my art. For obvious reasons, writing is the most helpful. I am also an incredibly language focused person; I have taken courses to learn Italian, French, Latin, and German. And I still want to learn Spanish and ASL as well as get back into French and German so I can carry a conversation in many languages. Writing helps me to understand how different languages structure sentences and organize words. And lastly, I am a very chatty person; I can stream of consciousness someone for hours. Writing helps me be chatty without annoying my husband with constant chatter.
Blogging and running my own blog helps me to share my thoughts, passions, and ideas with the world. I get to decide what I write about and how I speak about it. And that makes me happy.
What I’ve learned:
Well, to start with, I’ve learned how to use Squarespace a little better, customize it more, and overall make it more of my vision (looking at my first articles makes me cringe a little but I’ll leave them as they were originally created for posterity’s sake). I’ve also learned how to create a process for this sometimes messy and often directionless project. But most importantly, I’ve learned how important my voice is and how to share it.
Best experience so far:
Writing for this blog has been incredible in so many ways and has allowed me to connect with so many new people I wouldn’t otherwise be able to get to know. But one person stands out more than any other. Cheryl. Cheryl is a wonderfully sweet lady who also made a beautiful cow quilt. She reached out to me with some questions about how I did a few things when making my abstract cow quilt; she was making the same quilt for her niece and wanted some advice. After a few back and forth emails, she powered through her quilt finishing it quickly and skillfully. As much as I loved our initial emails and getting to help a fellow quilter, I was so honored and proud when she emailed me a few weeks later to share her beautifully finished quilt. It’s connections like this that push me forward in what I do, it’s what I want to come from either of my blogs. Someday, when we settle down in one place I dream of having a craft shop with a big community space for people to interact, work together, share tips, and create a community.
What to look forward to this next year:
This blog is essentially about my life. Currently, my life is a lot of traveling so that will definitely be at the forefront. You will see lots of articles about where we go, what we experience, and how we do it. But, I want to start creating city guides, answering more questions about van life and how we did the build, maybe help someone else with their build, and get more into our day-to-day life.