• By Amanda Blackburn.

Why I’m a blogger!

When I hit the very scary “publish” button for the first time over a year ago, I had no idea what to expect. Why did I suddenly feel the need to talk to complete strangers about my life matters?

It all started with a few glasses of wine on a night out with some of the school mums. I very rarely went out for drinks into town so it had been a while. I agreed to go to get to know some of the parents from my son’s class. We had all chatted briefly whilst dropping off our children but none of us had really got to know each other properly. I was at a very low point in my life, socialising was something I had been avoiding. I made myself go because deep down inside I knew that I needed to help myself, I needed some time out from being Mum.

I got talking to one of the mums, she made me feel at ease and we somehow had a connection, I hadn’t noticed her before at school drop-offs or pickups. The wine, of course, helped me to open up and relax a bit, we danced, chatted and I didn’t get home until 3 am. It had been lovely to just have some time for me, I shared my problems with the other mums and listened to theirs. The next day I felt less stressed and a lot happier. Our friendship started there and this is where my new blogging journey began.

This new friend was a blogger and had been for quite a while. She suggested I wrote about my problems to get them off my chest. I wasn’t sure it was a good idea, to begin with, I wasn’t very good on the computer and knew nothing about setting up a blog page. She suggested I should start a post and give it a go, what had I got to loose? I could try writing my feelings down and I could save my posts and share them when I was ready. If I didn’t ever share them she said writing them down would still help.

Writing my first post wasn’t very easy, all the feelings I had been keeping inside, I was now having to think about. I don’t like crying but whilst writing it I cried a lot, but when I’d finally finished my post I felt a great sense of achievement. It took me a few weeks to pluck up the courage to tell my friend I had finished my post, I wasn’t sure I wanted to share it with the world and I knew she’d try and encourage me to take it further.

I finally plucked up the courage to tell my friend about my post. She, of course, couldn’t wait to help me set up my blog page, she’s such an amazing computer whizz and gets great pleasure talking about all things like this. I, however, knew nothing about anything to do with the things she was going on about and felt like she was talking to me in a different language. Blog pages, links, social media, shares, likes, comments how to do this and that????? My head was going to explode!!!!!

Her confidence and faith in me kept me going, she helped me set things up as easily as possible with a free site called Blogger. It was a very straightforward page and great to write and practice on. I typed up what I had written and before I had any time to change my mind I clicked post. It was done, all I had to do now was sit back and wait.

My first post had about 30 reads in the first week which is not a lot but this still made me feel happy and it encouraged me to write another. I had so many things I wanted to get off my chest my head was busy but I liked it. I planned to write a post a week and within a month with 4 posts up I had over 600 reads. I became addicted, constantly checking to see if I had reads, desperate for people to comment on my posts. Our family worries were growing my daughter’s illness was getting worse but the writing was keeping me sane and was helping me cope. I opened up to my readers and the support from people reading my posts made me feel stronger.

I wanted to improve my page so I started to read other posts with advice on how to grow your blog. My brain was busy again, I felt alive, I wanted to improve so badly my friend made everything look and sound so easy, I wanted to be as good as her. Believe me when I say it’s not been an easy ride for me, at the age of now 43 I’ve had to learn everything from the start. I’d never really spent any time on a computer and other than having a Facebook account social media wasn’t really my thing.

I was definitely one of those people who used to wonder why on earth someone would need to tell all their friends on Facebook that they had, just cleaned their cooker or just woke up! But to become a successful blogger you need to know a lot about social media and be very active with your sites. So now I’m that person posting about everything I do. I even talk most days on my Instagram story, telling my IG friends all my life stories and sharing my scary no make up face with the world...

So what can you expect from me as a blogger?

My answer is honesty, no frills, just me sharing my moments of happiness, sadness and most of the time craziness. I’m a 40+crazy mum who has lived and hopes to continue to live a very colourful life. Colourful meaning, lots of explosions with plenty of drama. My blogging isn’t the only thing that keeps me sane, I will continue to share my wellbeing and yoga tips to help you survive.

I know I’m a far cry from the beautiful fashion bloggers sharing their beauty and fashion tips but let’s say….. once a month if I manage to put a few decent outfits together I will share these with you. I like to keep things reasonably priced and I will try to pose without looking ridiculous. I will also share all my beauty tips with you, listing any amazing products that I come across or telling you which ones to avoid.

If you have been reading my posts you will know that I’m a full-time childminder with over 25 years childcare experience. I like to think I’m a toy expert and when I come across something cool I will share it with you along with advice and different ideas of how to play with your children.

I’ve found documenting my crazy journey not only helps keep me sane but it also helps my readers too. I’ve had such a lot of beautiful messages from so many of you, thanking me for my tips on how to deal with anxiety, yoga tips! how to meditate and how I’ve motivated you to go do something different. This means so much to me, to feel like I’m helping is one of the main reasons I want to carry on. I’m so sad I had to move websites as the one I’d been using for a year put it’s monthly price up dramatically and I simply couldn’t afford it. Because I moved I lost all of my comments, I was able to move over my posts but not my comments. So please continue to comment, those comments mean so much to me.

When I get sent things to review I will always try and get extra for giveaways. It’s not been easy to get this and giveaways are hard and time-consuming to run but I like to offer all my readers a chance to enter in a way to say Thank you for taking the time to read. Last year I ran some great giveaways, hopefully, I will this year, so don’t forget to join my mailing list so you will get a notification when I post. Two things I promise, I will always be honest about a product/company/experience and I will only ever write about products/trips/companies that I would actually be interested in anyway.

So there you have it, what you can expect from me?! EVERYTHING. My blogs are about my life and all the things that come my way. Most bloggers just stick to one thing which I probably should be doing if I ever want to become a successful blogger. My life isn’t about just one thing so I will be sharing my life and ALL that it entails.

If you feel I’ve missed something, or think there’s something I should be doing more of please let me know!


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