blogging

How I Started Blogging and Turned my Dream into Reality

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Have you ever thought about starting a blog? Are you interested in how I started blogging? I’m so glad I started mine and I have some great resources to share with you that helped me get started!


Computers from Early On

I have been on computers since I was 4-years-old back in 1990. For anyone who wasn’t around back then, that was BEFORE THE INTERNET!!! AHHH!!!! Anyway, we started out with a Macintosh Apple Computer similar to the one below, though honestly, I think we had an older version to start. At that time I also had an awesome keyboard for my little kid games.

Apple Macintosh Computer from about 1990 or so with a keyboard and mouse.
Similar to the first computer I ever used.

Needless to say, I’ve been on computers basically my whole life, for as long as I can remember at least. My dad felt it was really important that I get used to computers as he could tell back then that computers were going to be big and I needed to get in on the ground floor.

I loved computers from the beginning, loved playing games and then typing as I got older. I remember in 6th grade we had formal typing classes in the computer lab near the front of the school. I always loved that class because if we got done early we’d get to play Oregon Trail or Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego. I also loved to add clip art to a basic paint-type program called Kid Pix. It was awesome. Being an early romantic, I’d almost always have hearts in my art, usually above a man and a woman facing each other as though they were kissing and often a baby would be below them. I always wanted to be married and have a baby, even back then.

As I’ve mentioned in other posts, I started writing as a hobby when I was in 2nd grade. I always loved journaling out my feelings, writing about whichever guy I had a crush on at the time, and writing poetry. As a teenager I wrote over 1,000 poems of varying topics, I still all of them in notebooks in my current bedroom closet. Maybe I’ll publish some someday… I had entered a couple of poems into contests as a teen and did get them in some books but that was pretty common to be able to do back then I think.


Computer + Writing = Blog

Once I got a bit older and the internet came about, I started making some simple blogs on homestead.com or something like that. I remember I had a basic journal-type blog and then also had a blog that was pretty much all animated images which were new and amazing back then as a kid in junior high. Lol Maybe it was incredibly awesome to everyone, I can only speak for myself though. It was actually part of a class that I made The Simpson animated images blog-type website. Oh, those were the days.

I took a break from blogging since I wasn’t writing much content that I felt I wanted to share with the world, i.e. really personal, emotional poetry, so I just concentrated on writing for myself and not sharing with others.

College, graduate school, more graduate school, and the start of my career meant I didn’t blog then either because I was too busy writing for anything BUT pleasure. I did start a private blog once I stopped drinking in March of 2012 because I wanted to type out my thoughts and share them with my parents and my boyfriend, who now is my husband. I still have that blog live and have considered making it more user-friendly and adding it to this blog but we’ll see.

From 2012 to 2015 I was webmaster for my state’s school psychologists association as a board member, among other roles such as co-chairing the membership committee, and technology. I feel like there was one more but many years + 3 kids later, I can’t remember it all. That is when I really got into blogging and using WordPress which is by far my favorite blogging platform.


WordPress

During that time, my then-boyfriend, now husband, and I went to WordCamp two years in a row, which was so awesome. I should mention, my husband is a web developer and also has a blog. He helped me quite a bit with the coding side of the association’s website while I did more of the designing, content, and things like that. I can do a lot but sometimes we needed some actual coding experience to get us all the features we desired. Sadly, that version of the website that he and I had spent countless hours on is no longer, as they’ve decided to go another route. Oh well. It helped keep me busy which helped keep me sober in those early days of sobriety and made me feel good about myself so I consider it a win.

WordCamp was so fun to go to and geek out with all the other local people who use WordPress as their main website platform. We learned so much from the WordCamp weekends.

If you’re interested in starting a blog using WordPress, click here or the button below to check it out. It’s a very beginner page in which WordPress tells you what you need to do to get started. I won’t reinvent the wheel here since it’s already laid out for you.


Personal Blog

I started a personal blog when I got pregnant with my high-risk MoDi Twins so I could share the details of my biweekly appointments and such with my Facebook friends and family. It also was a great place to write out my hopes, fears, and frustrations around that pregnancy. It was a very difficult and traumatic pregnancy, and I’m surprised all 3 of us survived.

When my twins were 2 I decided I wanted to start a ‘real blog’ meaning one that I didn’t just share with a small subset of friends and family but that I wanted to write to help others who were pregnant with MoDi twins and anyone I could. I have some health conditions that can greatly affect pregnancy and I was astounded and frustrated that though I had great doctors, they weren’t up on the latest research of how to handle those conditions during pregnancy and I had to advocate for myself, and my babies, quite often. I wanted to ensure I shared the best practices with anyone that I could, and I felt the best way to do that was via a blog.

It was the Fall of 2020 when the name “The Way it Really Is” finally popped into my head. Before then, I had wanted to start my blog but I just couldn’t think of a name that encompassed the rather random-seeming ideas I wanted to write about and tie together. Once I came up with that name, I got to work and started designing the blog that you see here today.


Start a Mom Blog with Suzi

In the Fall of 2020, once I came up with my blog name and purchased the domain, I saw an ad for “Start a Mom Blog”. Though I usually don’t click through ads, I clicked this one and I’m glad I did! Start a Mom Blog has been a wonderful resource for me in starting my blog and continuing to see it grow. My initial purchase was just $27 and I got an amazing amount of content to get me started!

Having the basic knowledge from Suzi at Start a Mom Blog, I knew I could make my blog into something real, something that others would find helpful and would stick out. One of the resources I got initially is called the Blog by Number ebook. She has so many wonderful resources that break everything down step by step with how to start a blog, grow a blog, and make income with a blog. Her resources have really given me so much knowledge and confidence moving forward!

Click the button below to see the Blog by Number ebook. It’s one of the ebooks that helped me feel confident enough to start my very own blog! Suzi’s resources she’s created based on her own success and research are amazing, comprehensive, and worth so much more than she charges. The first kit I got from her I just spent $27 on and it contained 3 ebooks and so many other wonderful resources. I’ve continued to come back to her for all of my blogging needs.

Recently I enrolled in her mini-course regarding developing printables and I’m excited to roll some of those out soon!!

Click below to check out the Blog by Number ebook, course, and bundle! The ebook is very helpful but the course adds in a pre-built website to get you started, videos to help you, blog post templates, and so much more! The bundle includes all of the above plus the Blog by Number course, Niche by Number course, Post by Number course, The Perfect Affiliate Post, and more!!


Printables by Number

Suzi and John of Start of Mom Blog just released Printables by Number 3.0 which I recently purchased and am so excited to dig into!!

printables by number 3.0 main layflat
Graphic from Start a Mom Blog

I hadn’t thought of the legal side of having a blog until Suzi from Start a Mom Blog was posting about it on Facebook. I thought omg, duh! Of course, there is a legal side to all of this! There are always Privacy Policies, Terms, and Conditions, and a Disclaimer on websites, of course, mine would need one too!

There is a lawyer, named Amira, who does this for a living and she makes easy-to-use and easy-to-customize legal templates to ensure your blog is legal in every aspect. So far I just have the templates above but likely will purchase more if/when my blog continues to grow. Her site is called ASelfGuru and she has so many amazing templates to cover any aspect of your blog. I will be writing a more in-depth blog post about her templates at a future date.

The Comprehensive Legal Bundles are the best value for your money. You can learn more about them by clicking the pink button below and/or continue to read on below.

The Starter Legal Bundle is essential for any blogger as it includes the Terms and Conditions Template, Disclaimer Template, and Privacy Policy Template. These templates ensure your blog is legally compliant and protect your blog/business from fines, audits, and lawsuits. The Starter Legal Bundle also comes with 9 FREE Bonuses including the Earnings Disclaimer, Testimonials and Reviews, GDPR Visitors Rights, Cookie Policy, and more!

Once I had this starter bundle, which honestly just took me about 30 minutes to personalize and upload to my own website, I felt a huge weight off my shoulders and a sigh of relief.

starter legal bundle templates
Graphic from A Self Guru

The Premium Legal Bundle is a step up from the Starter Legal bundle and adds the Sponsored Posts Contract Template, Independent Contractor (Freelance Contract) Template, and Guest Blogger Agreement Templates to the aforementioned Terms & Conditions, Disclaimer, and Privacy Policy Templates. The Premium Legal Bundle comes with 13 FREE Bonuses including the Non-Compete Disclaimer, Third-Party Links Disclaimer, and so many more!

premium legal bundle set
Graphic from A Self Guru

The VIP Legal Bundle is the best deal of all of the bundles and the most comprehensive. It includes all of the templates listed above PLUS 10 Additional Legal Bundles PLUS 13 FREE Bonuses!! The VIP Legal Bundle will cover you as your blog grows and honestly is what I wish I would have purchased from the start! I really love the Design Service Agreement Template, Partnership Agreement Template, and LLC Operating Agreement Template.

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Graphic from A Self Guru

Awesome Affiliate Programs

A Self Guru also has an affiliate program that is also offers affiliates who have purchased their products 40% of the purchase price for anyone who purchases through their affiliate link. I also have become an affiliate of theirs so if you choose to purchase and go through my links I’ll income from that, which I’d really appreciate as well!

Even if they didn’t have affiliate programs, I would still recommend them. I honestly didn’t know they had affiliate programs when I did purchase them, it wasn’t until I had already implemented the changes to my blog and took the advice given and started recommending them to others that I found out about the affiliate programs.

(Currently this affiliate program is not available, I’ll update when it is) Start a Mom Blog has a 40% affiliate program, meaning if someone pays $200 for a course that you have purchased and then you enter their affiliate program, you get $80!! You just would need 3 people to purchase through your link to make your money back and then some! If you click to my affiliate link I’ll get 40% from that which would be super duper awesome and appreciated!!


My First Year Blogging

Within the first year, in addition to ongoing research and classes with Start a Mom Blog and getting my Legal Templates set up, I wrote 100+ blog posts, set up my Amazon Affiliate account, Google AdSense, and started making a tiny bit of money. Pretty cool. Even better, I feel I helped hundreds of women expecting twins, looking for the latest deals, or looking for very honest parenting advice with my blog.

The hardest part has been ensuring my blog posts get out there for others to read. Most Facebook groups don’t allow self-promotion, even if it is to help others. The admins of the groups don’t care that I legitimately write content to help people and answer the common questions many moms, especially twin moms, have. They just see it all as self-promotion when I post my blog and that is incredibly disheartening.

I’ve been working hard to improve my SEO (search engine optimization) to help my blog get found via internet search through Google and Bing, but we’ll see if that all pays off.

Always feel free to use the sharing buttons at the top of the article to share to your social media pages or pin the image at the end of each blog post. I truly appreciate and celebrate every blog visitor I get to my blog and every person I am able to help.

See below for more blog posts about blogging!


How I Started Blogging and Turned My Dream into Reality text overlay with woman blogging in photo

Founder, Professional Blogger at The Way it Really Is, LLC | [email protected] | Website

As a mom of identical twins and a son two years older, I have gained invaluable experience in the realm, and chaos, of parenting. With a Master's Degree and Education Specialist Degree in School Psychology, I spent years as a school psychologist, helping children navigate through their educational and emotional challenges. Now as a stay at home mom and professional blogger, I combine my areas of expertise to help you in your parenting journey.

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