My New Year Blogging Thoughts

My New Year Blogging Thoughts

Hey guys ❤ I hope that you’re all doing well! For this post, I have a bit of a blog update / thoughts post to share with you. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking over the past couple of months, and I’m still thinking about exactly how I’d like to blog in 2018.

Let’s both grab a cup of coffee and settle in for a blog chat. ❤

If you’ve been following along with my blog posts for a while, you’ve probably noticed that regardless of when I’m posting, the mood of the posts are pretty much the same – happy and upbeat. I enjoy writing like this, don’t get me wrong, but it can be deceiving when I share a happy post when I’m actually going through a tough time.

Like several other bloggers, I pre-write posts. Yes, I’m in a good mood when I write those posts, but by the time they’re posted a week or two later, things have changed in my personal life.

One huge example of this is when I shared a few pre-written posts at the beginning of August, ones that I had written before I got strep throat. I was reading the responses those posts received while laying on the couch or in my bed, extremely groggy and feeling awful, which my readers could not have gathered from the posts I was sharing.

I’ve made it hard at times for bloggers to connect with me when I don’t share posts that are relevant to how I’m feeling the day I share them. In one way, it’s a nice escape when things aren’t going well to have nice comments to read, but I can’t really respond back correctly when I’m sick, irritated, sad, or worried.

Pre-writing posts is a wonderful way to blog with minimum stress, but I cannot tell you just how important it is to make sure the posts you share are an accurate reflection of how you are currently feeling. Even a few days’ difference can make a big impact on how you feel about life.

These past few months have been very full for me. From the various doctors appointments we’ve driven to (sometimes multiple times within a week), to the different struggles my family and I have gone through as we make the transition to welcome a new baby into our family this winter, most (if not all) of the posts I’ve shared in this time of my life weren’t all that relevant. There was little to no talk of the stress, anxiety, and fear I’ve faced, and looking back now, I regret not being more open.

It wasn’t that I didn’t want to talk to you guys; I simply didn’t think of it. (Except for when my mom was in the hospital, as you read about here.) In my desire to have all of my posts be upbeat, I haven’t been current. They were relevant to my life, but not by the time I posted them.

*takes a long swig of my imaginary coffee*

In today’s post, I hope to make up for a bit of lost time. In the posts that I do now, I’m going to strive for accuracy over comfort. Being real is so important, making it easier for me and my readers to connect and relate. 🙂

The other blog-related topic I’ve been struggling with for a long time is exactly what posts to write, and how to maintain a post schedule. That has been difficult for me, because I really like consistency … but with the new year quick in coming, I’d like to write a bit about a concept that’s new to me, which is blogging comfortably. It will help me immensely, give me peace of mind, and enable me to receive feedback on what I’m currently thinking about, going through, and maybe even obsessing over. Let’s take a look at what this consists of below. ❤

  • Writing posts that truly mean something to me. While I wouldn’t say that I was always sharing posts this past year that I didn’t care for, I was only thoroughly excited about sharing a small selection of posts throughout each of those twelve months. I’m not upset by this, as sharing ones that matched my blog’s focus and ones I knew readers would enjoy made me happy. However, I need a definite shift of focus now. That practice hasn’t brought me joy for months – I want to write and complete posts that make me grin while working on the drafts. I want to race to my laptop and get the ideas that excite me down on my dashboard before I forget. I’d love to share posts that were started because I thought one day, “I should write a post on that!” Instead of writing posts to fill my calendar, I want to pencil in the best ideas … when they come to me.
  • Sharing pieces that I love, and ditching drafts that I don’t. There have been way too many times where I went ahead and finished a post because, for example, “I need a post for Tuesday’s spot.” Don’t get me wrong, keeping up with a set blogging schedule is an epic motivator, readers love it, and I’ve done it myself at times, but that’s not how I’m able to blog at the moment. When I now see a post in the drafts that I would’ve went ahead and finished even if I didn’t want to, I’ll trash it.
  • Focusing on blogging with purpose. Whether I’m inspiring myself, others, or both (that’s always awesome!), I don’t want to share a post just because it’s a good post. Why did I decide to write it in the first place? Many posts have lost their pizzazz for me shortly after making the draft because my initial inspiration for it had rather fizzled out, leaving me to cover the main points as best I could. Why go to that trouble when the post wasn’t working for me as I had originally hoped it would? For me, blogging is a beautiful side hobby. To keep it this way, I don’t need to treat it as a part-time job.
  • Not worrying about the time of day. If I completely finish writing a post midday, I should go ahead and post it! I’ve been scheduling posts for the early morning (EST) for a long time, but it would make me much happier now to share a post when I’ve just finished it. (Just like I’ve done with this post!) This would make all the posts I share extremely current and relevant.
  • Letting inspiration come, and then writing [a post or two] once it’s there. Throughout 2017, I’d surf the web (my, that’s an old term haha) and scrounge around for inspiration anywhere I could find it when it came time to write posts for the following week. I’d write additional parts to older posts, reblog something, continue with an old series, compose a short standalone – anything to fill my cute blogging calendar. I enjoyed this blogging style for a while, but I quickly grew tired of it. I need to sit down and write posts when they’re there, not sit down to find posts to write.
  • Not worrying about the consistency of my posting. It’s tempting as a passionate blogger to write and post as often as possible to be fairly consistent, but this is not something I desire to strive for in this new year (for now, at least). Focusing on writing more standalone posts is something I plan to cultivate in 2018.

Those are my thoughts on blogging at the moment! If you have anything to add, whether it’s a word of encouragement, etc, I’d be so happy to hear from you. This was quite a lengthy post for an update, but I’ve been needing to write it for months, so it has been so wonderful for me to finally express how I’m feeling.

I’d love to talk to you about blogging in the comments below! ❤
What have you been thinking about blogging lately?
What struggles have you overcome?

— Maggie

A Year of Skies

A Year of Skies

There are few things I love to photograph more than the sky. I never cease to be amazed by its vastness, beauty, and extravagance – it reminds me of my Lord and Savior, Whom I love so much. ❤ It is both of these loves that has inspired this post! I went back through all of the pictures that I took in 2017 and found twelve different photos of the sky which were taken over the months. With these pictures, I found scripture from the Psalms to accompany them. ❤ I hope you enjoy!

“So will I bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.”
– Psalm 63:4

“Blessed be the Lord, because He has heard the voice of my supplications.”
– Psalm 28:6 

“The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness of it, the world and they who dwell in it.”
– Psalm 24:1

“For You, O Lord, have made me glad by Your works; at the deeds of Your hands I joyfully sing.” – Psalm 92:4

“Your name, O Lord, endures forever, Your fame, O Lord, throughout all ages.”
– Psalm 135:13

“May the glory of the Lord endure forever; may the Lord rejoice in His work … “
– Psalm 104:31

“May my mediation be sweet to Him; as for me, I will rejoice in the Lord.”
– Psalm 104:34

“The Lord has established His throne in the heavens, and His kingdom rules over all.” – Psalm 103:19

“O give thanks unto the Lord, call upon His name,
make known His doings among the peoples!” – Psalm 105:1

“Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and let Your glory be over all the earth.”
– Psalm 108:5

“The works of the Lord are great, sought out by all those who have delight in them. His work is honorable and glorious, and His righteousness endures forever.”
– Psalm 111:2-3

“The heavens declare His righteousness, and all the peoples see His glory.”
– Psalm 97:6

Thank you for reading! Have a blessed weekend ❤

A Few Of My Favorite Things – December 2017

A Few Of My Favorite Things – December 2017

Hey there guys, and happy Tuesday!! I hope that you all had a beautiful Christmas. My family and I did! 🙂 ❤ How did you spend your holiday? What were the highlights? You’ll have to let me know in the comments below!

For today’s post, I decided to sum up my month of December with my favorite pictures and memories. I was going through photos on the computer last week and couldn’t help but notice all of the wonderful things that happened this past month.

I am in great shock of the fact that this will be one of the last posts I share in 2017! I’m serious, where did the time go? However, it’s been a fantastic year for me and my family. We went through some tough times, but we had the Lord and each other through it all, so everything turned out beautifully. ❤ I’m so stoked for the new year, but at the same time, I keep thinking back over the last twelve months.

What will the next twelve have in store?

For today, though, I’ll just talk about these last few weeks! ❤ Hope you enjoy!

Favorites of December

— (Featured image) Admiring The Great Outdoors.

Yes, it did rain quite a bit this month, lol, but that’s winter for us in the southern US. There were showers, sunshine, dense fog, and wildlife to watch. The trees shed their leaves as the temperature steadily dropped over the days and weeks, and I managed to get some beautiful shots of the last leaves of the season at the beginning of the month.

— My New Succulent Greeting Banner.

While Christmas shopping early in the month, I found this at a good price in the decor section of a local store and immediately knew it belonged in my room. I couldn’t just leave it there, considering it goes along with all the decorations in my room, haha! Its current residence is my windowsill, where I’m sure it will stay until we move.

— Our First Ever December Snowfall!

I don’t know if I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ve lived in the southern US my whole life, and it has not snowed once before January in our part of the state. That’s rather sad, since I love snow and dream of one year having a white Christmas, but GUYS! Check out the pictures below. We finally got to experience snow around Christmas!

— Rediscovering The Beauty Of Reading.

My love of books went on a hiatus this whole year, as I’ve been too busy occupying my time with other activities to the point where reading books wasn’t included in my free time anymore. It often made me sad, as I didn’t have enough of an attention span to enjoy a good book, but I’m finally back. Haha, I’m a book nerd again!! My goal is to read 50 books in 2018, so we’ll see how that goes.

— Finishing The First Semester Of My Senior Year.

It’s so foreign to me to be nearly done with school! I can’t get my mind around the fact that I’ll be finished with it all early next year. I’m excited, but it will still be strange, hehe

— The December Photography Challenge.

Taking pictures to go along with the prompts for Gracie’s photo challenge was an absolute blast! Some of them were definitely a challenge, haha, when I couldn’t get just the right angle for the photo, or I didn’t have anything present to match the prompt, but it was still fun. I ended up participating in the first three weeks of the challenge, which was so enjoyable to do.

— Admiring Our Christmas Tree.

One of the highlights of every December for me is getting out the tree, decorating it, and then enjoying how pretty it is all month long! It makes everything so much more festive, which I absolutely love.

— Dressing Festively.

When I have a reason to dress up for something, whether it’s a special occasion or a nationwide holiday, I thoroughly enjoy it! Christmas sweaters, patriotic tank tops, dressy casual ensembles … that’s the usual yearly round-up for me, haha. This holiday season, my favorite things to wear have been my awesome red Christmas sweater, soft gray and white pj pants, and my jingle bell ring.

— Trying Tea And Planning Things.

I’m always brainstorming post ideas and moving dates around in my planner, so this is applicable for any month. However, the addition of trying tea (chamomile and peppermint, separately and respectively) was totally new for me! I won’t enjoy chamomile unless I find the perfect blend of flavors for my liking, but I did enjoy the taste and soft twang of peppermint tea with a bit of milk and sugar. It was very festive and made me happy.

— Reaching High Scores On My Favorite Games.

It has been said that I am a competitive person (actually only my family says that, lol), so it’s not uncommon for me to play a game obsessively until I come out on top. A few weeks in a row, I attained the highest score in my league on Subway Surfer, and I was quite proud. I’ve also been playing a game called ‘Plumber’ (a mini-game on a multi-game app), and I completed every single level in record time. haha

my fun, in-game badge haha

Thank you sooo much for reading! December was a beautiful month, and I am definitely looking forward to January. ❤

Let me know in the comments below:

How was YOUR December?