This week it was my little blogs birthday. During the summer holidays of 2013, I began to look into starting my own blog. My hours in work were dropping to 10 hours a week, and I needed a distraction to keep me away from the ironing and housework. Blogging seemed the answer, and I knew I wanted to focus on our travels and adventures as a family. I spent the summer holidays researching ‘starting a blog’. Which platform would be the best…. WordPress or Blogger ? Looking at endless themes and thinking of a domain name. And on 7th September 2013, I published my first post, all about our adventures during the summer holidays.

Not a bad view when you are blogging

Not a bad view when you are blogging

So what I have learnt over the past 2 years ?

That yes, blogging does indeed act as a distraction from the ironing and housework (sorry husband).

Whilst I am no tech wizard, at the weekend I finally moved over to self hosted. This is something that had been on my to do list for months. It certainly wasn’t as scary as I thought, and the lovely guys at TSO Host did the majority of the migration. So whilst techy things can be scary, with the help of YouTube and the Northwest Bloggers Facebook group, I managed it.

Which brings me nicely onto the blogging community. I love being part of this crazy community. Bloggers are helpful, friendly, and bloody proud of the hard work each and everyone puts into their blog. Some of the blogs I read on a regular basis and I completely love are

mummydaddyme – Filled with stunning photography of her beautiful girls and family

extraordinarychaos – I discovered Sarah through our mutual love of Walt Disney World

letstalkmommy – I love following Jenny on her adventures both in the UK and the USA

theheartylife – Mary blogs from the heart and I had the pleasure of meeting her in May

uncheshirewife – Lorraine has me in giggles with her poems and life with a teenager

lifeasourlittlefamily – Kerri-Ann has the most adorable and stylish little boy

minitravellers – Karen has a wonderful website full of travel and days out. Completely up my street

mummyofboygirltwins – Jess has a wonderful writing style and I love reading about her family and new home

mumofthreeworld – Sarah has children which are very similar in age to mine, and I love reading about her family life

Going to a blogging conference is not as scary as you may think. I waited 18 months until I went to my first one, and I really wish I had taken the plunge the previous year. Conferences are a great way of meeting people, learning new things and connecting with brands.  Plus you get amazing goody bags. I shall forever be grateful to Lorraine from uncheshirewife for holding my hand (and for giving me a lift home lol).

That blogging can give you some pretty amazing opportunities. Ever sat in a cinema whilst being served food and drink linked to the film ? The Dare to Dine event at the Trafford Centre gave us this pretty cool opportunity. The kids have had some great days out, and recently I worked with Forest Holidays.

Who knows what the next 2 years will bring ? Blogging is a little like parenting. You never know what the next day will bring, and its a huge learning curve. I still have so much to learn. I am still a pretty rubbish blogger, in that I don’t blog everyday, I don’t have a huge camera (most of my pictures are on my iPhone) and I keep forgetting about joining linkies. But most importantly I have had fun along the way. And that’s all that matters really.