500

Today is the day: my 500th post.

I am, at the same time, the kind of person who gets sentimental about milestones, but who also doesn’t really spend a lot of time planning anything in anticipation. So, that’s to say, 500 really snuck up on me. I noticed a few weeks ago that I was getting really close, and after posting my new headboard Friday I saw the magic number… 499. I could have squeaked out something “special” and gotten this post up on Monday (I am trying to commit to a MWF schedule) but my job had inventory scheduled that afternoon/night and I didn’t want to phone something in… I mean, it is milestone after all.

I guess a good thing to to at this point is to look back at some highlights, right?

Entering the Office

My highest-traffic post is (you guessed it) the wood pallet room divider. Man, it was so easy to build and was a really, really good space dividing solution in that gigantic bedroom in the old loft. The divider has been really popular on Pinterest and was even featured in DIY roundups on several other blogs, including one in Turkey and one Brazil. It was linked to on Design Milk’s facebook page with (very!) mixed reactions. I know it’s not for everybody, but it worked really well for us at the time.

bruges2small

My favorite series to date has got to be the posts I wrote when we got back from Europe–Eurotrip part 1, part 2, and part 3. I wish I’d been as methodical, organized, and well-written during my study abroad in Morocco, but I was just taking my bloggy baby steps back then. Looking back, the posts are pretty good, but they could have used more photos!

Let’s see… time to post a few goals for the next 500 posts!

  • Reach 1000 in half the time it took me to reach 500. (It took me three and a half years to reach 500).
  • Double site traffic in 2013 (I have doubled it every year since 2009).
  • Do another giveaway, in 2013. My Scentsy giveaway last summer was so fun :)
  • Do several posts giving a photo tour and profile of local San Diego shops and restaurants.
  • Make the final shift off of wordpress.com so I can have more flexibility and customization of the site.

To all my friends and readers, thanks for your comments and views! It would be much harder to keep up this blog without your encouragement. Nobody likes speaking into a vacuum.

Taking On Monday

After a fantastic Thanksgiving break at my parents’ house (and a not-so-stellar three days of retail work), I am feeling energized and ready to take on the week.

This week I’m planning a cool DIY sofa table post for Wednesday (a “fake it till you make it” solution, if you will) and a pretty inspiration board for Friday. I’m also going to get the Christmas Tree out (after weeks of begging Doug to let me put it up, now that Thanksgiving’s over, I can!) and decorate the apartment for Christmas.

And also: This morning I was featured twice! How’s that for starting Monday off on the right foot?

West Elm has featured my old bedroom with its’ Organic Ironwork Duvet cover… I really, really loved that light-filled space. Click here for more photos.

My friend Angela (best friend since 7th Grade, mind you) has revamped and relaunched her photography website, itsjustanji.com, and shared some of the pictures she took of my little family for our Christmas cards.

Ashley over at Yeah. We Bake. (my cousin) shared Thanksgiving with us up at my parents’ house and I can fully vouch for the deliciousness of these 2-tiered chocolate mini cakes. I’m craving one to have with my coffee right now actually….

So I’ll be here resisting the Cyber Monday e-mails I keep getting while listening to my favorite Christmas CD, Christmas With The Rat Pack. Maybe I’ll even bake? Who knows? Ashley makes it seem so easy! Either way, I love that I now live here in So Cal where I can have a Christmas tree up and the sliding glass door open to let the fresh 70-degree air in… Have a great Monday, all! 

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Focus.

I’d love to transform this blog into a full-time gig, or at least, use the blog as a springboard for a different full-time gig, something along the lines of interior designer/decorator/consultant. There. I said it. I put it out for the bloggy world to know.  That’s the first step, I hear.

This, I have admitted to myself, might or might not happen. Becoming a successful blogger is kind of like becoming a famous athlete or actress… Tons of hopefuls, but hard work and yes, talent, will set one apart from the rest. Clearly, I am currently in “the rest.” Let’s change that.

Homework.

Confession time: I recently read every post from Making it Lovely from the beginning of her blog to now. Seeing Nicole’s home come together from scratch was very encouraging. Same thing with Young House Love.

Tangent: I must keep reminding myself that I’m young, that funds are tight, that I do have a full time job that I have committed 40 hours a week to, etc etc. It’s so hard when the bloggers I admire are in their 30s. And already using their blog (among other avenues) for their living. On that note… perhaps I can be the voice of the struggling fresh-out-of college-niche? Although I’m not that fresh out of college anymore. I’m an in-betweener.

Back to homework: I am list-making, putting it in a binder, and I am filing away a few articles like this one and this one to study and try to take to heart.

Investment.

I’ve bought a camera to use for blogging but have only used it a few times.

Maybe if I knew how to use it a little better?

Do I want to save up for alt design summit next January? Seems like every blogger I follow went to it. Maybe if I’m a little more “established” by then?

Upgrading my wordpress and doing a custom design is something I’m interested in, but website woes I’ve been dealing with this week at work make me second-guess going to the next level. We shall see.

Boldness.

They say “if you want something, just ask.” I would feel like such a pest bugging “real” bloggers with links to my blog, so I haven’t done it. But I need to learn to take pride in my work! So what if my home tour hasn’t been featured on an interior design blog yet (ahem.) I am proud of my photos and my friends tell me they’re great. If my content wasn’t great, why would anyone go out of their way to tell me they like it? They would just ignore it like the elephant in the room. The fact of the matter is, I have had people complement my home and my blog, and instead of going “aww shucks,” I need to grab ahold of it with both hands and try to parlay it into the next phase of my life. This means offering to write guest posts, asking for people to write for me, doing more DIY tutorials (possibly) and just focusing and working hard instead of making excuses.

Right?