Monday, August 11, 2014

Hopping on the Blogland Tour

While I have immensely enjoyed spending more time with my little ones and baby over the past few months and less time editing, writing, and promoting posts, I feel like it's time to slowly wade back into the blogging waters. What better way to dip my toes in than to join in a fun Blogland Tour? What's a Blogland Tour? It's a way for you to learn a little more about me and my writing process and to meet a couple of wonderful bloggers.

My friend Paula from the Sweet Pea blog invited me to join in this round. Have you "met" Paula?

I've actually known Paula for much longer than I have been blogging. It's probably been close to ten years, even though we've only met in person one time! She is a creative, thoughtful person, and I love her blog posts because she often shares the history and stories behind the pieces she repurposes and reinvents.

Paula is a 7th grade teacher who loves to be active. She enjoys taking the time to run, cycle, and lift weights. Paula also loves being domestic. When she has free time, she likes gardening, cooking, decorating, sewing, and crafting. She and Mr. SP also have the most adorable pup, Sherman. 

One of my very favorite posts of Paula's is this genius DIY pallet wine rack, perfect for outdoor entertaining!

About Me and My Blog:

I started my blog back in 2008, when my now middle child was a newborn. I was cooped up in the house during a hard winter and felt like I needed a creative outlet. I wrote a grand total of maybe three posts that year before taking a break and making the choice to start blogging regularly in 2009.

I am a stay-at-home mom of three kids: two girls and a baby boy. I've been married to T for thirteen years, and we live in Virginia. Our family also has two dogs...a ginormous beastly German Shepherd named Elinor Dashwood (Ellie) and a Pomeranian named Emma Woodhouse. When I have a spare moment to catch my breath, I enjoy reading, thrifting, decorating, crafting, shopping, and taking pictures.

I also contribute to Centsational Girl's BOTB column and the Best of DIY site.

What am I Working On Now?

I feel like I have a bit of project ADD at the moment.

I'm trying to nag T into helping me repair my thrift store bench so I can reveal the ongoing mini kitchen makeover. Also in the works are a girls' study area, completing our shared play/craft space, updating a pair of window treatments, a gallery wall for my family room, painting the dining room, a back-to-school wreath, and a possible Instagram display for an upcoming Martha Stewart Plaid campaign. looking at that list, I think maybe I need to do a post solely dedicated to my to-do list. It's hard to fit all of this in when you've got a baby and two busy girls at home all day! But I do love to be creative.

How Does My Work Differ from Others in this Genre?

My blog straddles several different genres because when I do blog regularly (ie. before baby arrived), I tackle home decor, crafts, recipes, and home living.

But the phrase I'd use is "Realistic Inspiration." With many blogs becoming more and more like mini magazine spreads, it can start to feel like you'll never measure up...whether you're a reader or a blogger. A lot of the DIYs I see are sponsored by big companies who send bloggers materials and compensation. I've done some of those myself, and there's nothing wrong with it. But when you bill yourself as a budget blogger, it can start to sound a little stale when you've posted your fourth "budget room makeover" that was almost completely sponsored.

My family has tightened our financial belts over the past few years as many of yours have. I don't share a lot of large DIY and room makeover jobs because we just don't have the money. I share crafts and DIY projects when I have the extra cash or gift cards to spare. I'm through with posting crafts and other projects for the sake of posting. So...when I do post a project, you can bet that {unless it's under very special circumstances} it's going to be something you can replicate at home...without breaking the bank.

Why Do I Write/Create?

Simple: because my head would explode if I didn't.

How Does My Writing/Creative Process Work?

For the writing, I was very structured before baby #3 came along. I'd sit down every evening after the kids went to bed and put a post together...spending an hour or so writing, editing photos, and editing the writing. Posts went up like clock work at 8:01 EST every day from Monday to Friday...and at other intervals on Saturday and Sunday.

With three kids, one of them being a baby, I am no longer able to keep up with that schedule. I've probably only posted 5 or 6 creative posts in the past 6 months. I'm okay with it because I know there are seasons for everything, and my current season is about cherishing the little ones God has blessed me with.

As far as creating, I'll squeeze it in whenever I can. Usually during the hours of 1 to 3 pm, when Harris naps. Those are great spray painting hours, as far as I'm concerned!

Where the Tour Through Blogland Goes Next:

If you haven't visited Chaney from May Richer Fuller Be, it is my pleasure to introduce you.

I love this girl's style! She contributed to my "Season of Serenity" Christmas series last year, and she is so creative. Chaney is a genetic counselor by day, but she also dabbles in graphic and interior design. Her blog is full of clear, bright photos...loads of inspiration. One of my favorite projects of Chaney's is this vintage kitchen cart makeover, so sweet!

I do hope you will take the time to visit Chaney's blog. You are sure to be inspired!

Thanks for joining me on this little tour of Blogland. I will have features from the weekend link party up in a day or two, and I'll be back later this week with a Canvas Giveaway and a link party!

If you enjoyed this post or found it helpful, I hope you'll click your "Pin It" button to add this post to Pinterest, or a +1 for Google+. And I always appreciate kind comments.

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  1. I love your phrase "Realistic Inspiration" because that's exactly why I read! I know I'll be able to follow your well written tutorials without having to rent tools or take out a loan to afford the supplies. Thanks so much for doing what you do! :)

  2. Thanks so much for your kind words about me. I always have enjoyed your blog and I definitely like that you keep it real. I am looking forward to seeing the completion of some of the projects that you are working on.

  3. Wow Amanda, sounds like you have a long list of projects on your list. Which is pretty much how I always feel as well. Just wanted to say I love how you really do keep things grounded here on your blog and admire you for remembering what is really important.


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