Blogging is definitely one of those things that changes your life. Whether you monetize your blog or not, you often find yourself needing to treat your blog like a job so you can bring consistent, high-quality posts to your readers.
Personally, I love the blogging life. I love the new opportunities I’ve been able to pursue and the way blogging challenges both my creativity and my practicality. Still, I sometimes look back on my pre-blogging days with a wistful sigh as I remember the free time I used to have.
Here are a few of the thing I love best about being a blogger (and a few things I miss about life before blogging):
THINGS I LOVE
- All the stuff I’ve learned. I started this blog because I love reading and cooking, and the work I’ve put into it has made me better at both. I’m much more aware of the role food plays in books (I even wrote a post about it here), and I’ve experimented with WAY more cooking techniques and ingredients than I would have otherwise. Plus, I’ve learned a lot about photography, which is a hobby I’d never really thought about pursuing until I started AWR. In short, my blog has pushed me out of my comfort zone and challenged me to expand my horizons, which is flat-out thrilling! 🙂
- The Community. This blog has allowed me to get in touch fellow readers, cooks, tea enthusiasts, and all manner of lovely, geeky folks. Traditionally, reading and cooking have both been pretty solitary activities (reading especially), so I love that blogging has introduced me to a community of people who share my passion for food and lit.
- It’s Introduced Me to So Many NEW Things to Love. My blog inspired me to take my love of tea to new heights and start designing my own blends, which has become a minor addiction. Now I’m dreaming about making and selling my own teas some day! Blogging also introduced me to NaNoWriMo and the wonderful, supportive community that helped me write my first novel in years: Operation Crossroads. And I’m planning on writing a new novel this year! I’m also tossing around the idea of developing a homeschooling program that combines cooking and classic literature. The possibilities are endless!
THINGS I MISS
- Inventing Random Recipes. Since I cook weekly blog recipes and make dinner for the Mister and me every night, there isn’t a lot of time left for inventing random recipes. I’ve managed to develop a few original recipes that I tap into when the mood strikes me (Garlic Parmesan Pita Chips, Pork Sung Buns, and Perfect Pork Chops to name a few), but other ideas are pushed to the back-burner or forgotten due to lack of time. To help combat this, I’ve set a challenge for myself this year: include at least one original recipe in each menu. This is allowing me to flex my inventing muscles once again, even if my motivation doesn’t always come from raw inspiration.
- Reading Just for Fun. Don’t get me wrong, I still get to do this. Just not as often as I would like. There are certain books I have on my TBR because I think they’d make great menus, and I have a policy about not making menus for books I haven’t read (just in case I don’t like them). Sometimes if I’m reading a “blog book” and a “fun book” at the same time, it can be difficult to remember if I should be watching out for food.
- The Blissful Days Before Technology Headaches. Blogs are great, but having one means you inherit all the problems that can come with them. I once had a theme designer drastically change the theme I purchased in an update (which is why I switched to Tweak Me by Nosegraze, the awesome theme I have now). A few months later, WordPress randomly cut my upload file size to a totally unmanageable amount, and I had to make a php.ini file to fix it. When it comes to blogging, tech troubles seem to be the gift that keeps on giving.
At the end of the day, I think the pros of blogging far outweigh the cons.
I plan to keep at it for a good long time! 🙂