state of the blog address

State of the Blog Address

As I was catching up on one of my favorite blogs a few days ago, I spotted a post title that completely resonated with me. Hey Natalie Jean decided to publish a sort of “state of the blog address” to answer reader questions, and although I want to discuss something entirely different, I found it appropriately titled — so here I am. Let’s talk about some things you may have noticed in the past month or so, plus the direction of this ol’ blog of mine. WHERE I’VE BEEN Blog posts have been sparse around these parts and I myself have been a bit flakey due to an extremely long and wonderful family vacation that involved a whole lotta wondering and New York, Virginia, DC, and Maryland. Although I’ve been away from the world of blogging because real life always comes first, I’ve had a lot of time to think and reflect and I feel […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging20 Comments

15 more blog post ideas

Blog Post Ideas

If you’re in a creative rut, here are 15 more blog post ideas you can use for your website. Enjoy! 1. Love Story. I realized yesterday that I’ve never even written about how I met my husband. I mean, it was at a bar and we were both tipsy, but still. I’m sure people would want to hear about my lame story, right? ;) 2. Travel Plans. Do you have a vacation planned? A list of places you want to visit this year? Let us hear about them! 3. A Year of Firsts. As I was brainstorming post ideas today, I came up with something I think is super duper cute. Your blog is the place where you document your life, so let’s talk about things you tried this year. You could even use this idea for your children. Now how sweet would that be? 4. Favorite Instagram Photos. Instagram […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice34 Comments

i’ve met some of my good friends online

When I started my first blog back in Scotland, I had no idea what I was doing. I published posts for my friends and immediate family, and wasn’t aware that there was an entire community of expat and travel bloggers I could connect with. I didn’t even consider that some of these women would become my good friends down the road, and honestly, I used to think that meeting people online was somewhat creepy. Ok, really creepy. Obviously things have changed since then. I’m here to retract my previous sentiments and tell you that I’ve met some of my good friends online. In fact, I’ve met some of my closest friends online because of the blogging world. And the thing is, we don’t have to be friends. We just are. We didn’t grow up together and we didn’t go to school together. We don’t work in the same offices and most of us […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Lifestyle56 Comments

competitiveness in the blogging world

Competitiveness in the blogging world. Does it drive you nuts or push you harder to succeed? You can’t deny that this competitive nature is in the back of almost every blogger’s mind, so it’s a topic worth discussing. Although healthy competition is expected and perfectly fine, comparing yourself to other bloggers and getting too caught up in the numbers will result in a short blog lifespan. Believe me. It’s something I have to consider every time I publish a post and wait for those views to pour (or trickle) in. Obsessing leads to feeling burnt out and it just isn’t worth it.

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice87 Comments

fresh start

Isn’t it funny how something as small as a new design can give you a fresh start and a new perspective when it comes to blogging? My friend Amanda was kind enough to overhaul my entire website for spring and I can’t think of one thing I’d change. That’s surprising because I can be a big pain in the ass when it comes to the elements I want in a design. She’ll also be creating my new photography website in the near future and I’m sure it will be just as stellar. Amanda is a joy to work with and I highly recommend her if you’re looking for a fresh start like me. She’s sort of a genius when it comes to coding and isn’t afraid to work with her clients until everything is perfect. But back to fresh starts… Settling down after three years of moving feels like a […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Lifestyle46 Comments

sometimes i blog for money

Sometimes I blog for money. I feel like a prostitute writing that out. Oh my! And now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, here’s the deal… I’ve seen a few posts addressing the issue of authenticity and accepting sponsored posts and figured I’d touch on the subject. I entered blog land so I could keep my friends and family up-to-date while living abroad, but always had the intention of attempting to do this full-time. Who doesn’t want to make money by rambling all over the Internet, and when you’re offered $60-$200 to publish a single post on your website, who in their right mind would turn that down?! Well, maybe someone with more self-control than me, but I’m not working right now and I’d like to contribute in some way. My badass husband can’t make all of the monies in this household; therefore, I have decided to blog for money. Now […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice47 Comments

photography books | spark your creativity

Photography books to spark your creativity: After completing a few photography classes and really getting to know my DSLR, I began looking for photography inspiration in different places. I spent a lot of time researching websites and books and came to the conclusion that I no longer needed instructions and a ton of boring text because I had already mastered shooting in manual — woo hoo! No more snooze-fests for me! Needless to say, I wanted something more visually pleasing. I found that Pinterest was a great resource for posing subjects, photography props, and even photoshoot outfit ideas, but I also wanted something that would inspire me to try new things for my blog because I love looking at other bloggers’ lifestyle photos and home photography projects. Here are the five books I’ve really enjoyed these past couple of months. 1. A Beautiful Mess | 2. Creative Photography | 3. 50 Photo Projects 4. Photojojo! […]

       
Share


Filed Under: blogging, Blogging, Blogging Advice, Photography12 Comments

6 tips to start sponsorship on your blog

6 Tips To Start Sponsorship On Your Blog

Sometimes growing your readership requires a monetary investment so one way to break even is to offer sidebar ads on your website. The concept of blog sponsorship seems easy enough; however, it can be a tricky thing to grasp. If you’re doing it right, it’s time-consuming. You need to give every single one of your sponsors the attention he/she paid for and this means scheduling social media shout-outs, sponsor spotlights, individual guest posts, and monthly giveaways. Some months your giveaways might get more entries than others, and this also goes for readers clicking on sidebar ads. It can be frustrating when some weeks are more successful than others, but it’s important to not get discouraged and to keep giving your sponsors attention. It’s not your fault your readers are more “click happy” on certain days of the week, and you cannot do anything to control this. If you’re considering sponsorship […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice36 Comments

blogging and social media | a guide for beginners

Blogging And Social Media

I’ve been on a blogging tutorial kick lately, so why not talk about social media? Here are some important tips I think every blogger should keep in mind: 1. Use your blog name and make sure your handles match. If your blog name is “Puppies and Kittens” (hehe) but your social media handle is “ChristineM123” how will people find you? Make it easier on your readers by using your blog name and ensuring that all handles match or are as similar as possible. Since my blog name is “Postcards from Rachel”, my Twitter handle is @PostcardsRachel, my Pinterest account is @PostcardsRachel, and my Instagram handle is @PostcardsfromRachel. You get the idea! 2. Promote other bloggers’ content and they’ll return the favor. We’re all trying to grow our presence on the Interwebz, so why not help each other out? Tweet and Facebook some of your favorite bloggers’ links and I’m sure they’ll […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice30 Comments

15 blog post ideas | get over writer’s block fast

15 Blog Post Ideas

I’ve been feeling a bit uninspired lately so I took a look around my WordPress drafts and blogging notebook and realized that if I would just finish all of these posts, I’d be set for months! Even though I have plenty of blog post ideas right now, writer’s block is inevitable. For those of you who are dealing with writer’s block right now, here are 15 blog post ideas to help you out. Sometimes a post prompt is all we need! 1. Home Tour. This is the first thing that came to mind since we just purchased our own place and I’m excited to decorate. Even if you live in an apartment, show us some of your favorite areas! I know I’ve instagrammed our apartment kitchen “drink station” a few times and I love to see other bloggers’ spaces since I’m snoopy. ;) 2. Your Jewelry Box. I’ve been meaning […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice65 Comments

six questions | ask me a question and win a gift card

Six Questions is a startup based out of Harvard and MIT for internet personalities to answer their fans’ top questions and a few weeks ago, they contacted me about filming a short introduction for their website. Now I’m not sure I’d consider myself an “internet personality” and who knows if I actually have blog fans, but I wanted to participate because it’s a fun and interesting concept. Since I recorded a 30 second video for them, I’ll be the featured guest until January 17th. During this period, you can compete to submit and vote up questions, and then at the end of the week, I get to answer the top six questions in another video and you can all make fun of my akward-ness once again. Yay! But wait — it gets even better because you can win cool stuff by participating. The reader with the top-voted question will receive a $25 […]

       
Share


Filed Under: blogging, Blogging, Lifestyle16 Comments

top posts of 2013

2013 has come to an end and first and foremost, I want to thank all of you for sticking around and reading my blog. When I created this little space while living abroad in Scotland, I had no idea that it would grow to become such a creative outlet — and never in my wildest dreams did I think I’d make lifelong friends because of it. The beautiful thing about blogging is that when you’re vulnerable and decide to share your ups and downs with the entire world, you receive support in return. This support makes life a little easier and I’m certain it made 2013 a better year for me. So here’s to 2014. I couldn’t imagine a more excellent way to ring of the New Year than to share my favorite posts of 2013 with you all. ;) 1. Ways to improve your photography In 2013, I started […]

       
Share


Filed Under: blogging, Blogging13 Comments

blogger to wordpress transfer | my experience

In September of this year, I decided to transfer from Blogger to WordPress. Even though I’m enjoying this platform because of the plug-ins and customization, I can honestly say that this switch was the worst experience of my blogging career. My theme was completely botched and was causing loading errors for readers, my links weren’t working (Pinterest, Bloglovin’ and Facebook were completely useless to me), and all of that SEO juice I had built up over a little over a year? Gone. I still can’t believe I paid that much money for someone to completely screw me over and not even blink. When you invest hours upon hours of work into your website and an “expert” ruins all of that, you want to scream and give up on blogging all together. It gets better. The paperwork I filled out in the beginning of this whole process specifically stated that I needed to […]

       
Share


Filed Under: blogging, Blogging, Blogging Advice74 Comments

how to grow your blog… and love it, too

How To Grow Your Blog

In the past couple of months I’ve received quite a few emails with blogging questions so I figured a blogging advice post was in order. I hope to answer your questions and get you excited to grow your blog. 1. Don’t just hit publish — network. When people email me with questions on how to grow their blog, this is the first piece of advice I usually give. I truly believe that networking via Twitter has made all the difference when it comes to my blog readership numbers. Because my blog is focused on life as an expat and our travels, I follow bloggers who have the same interests as me, then I build relationships with them. If you do this, not only will you gain a new reader, but you’ll also gain a partner in crime when it comes to blog projects and collaborative posts. Plus, it’s always nice […]

       
Share


Filed Under: Blogging, Blogging Advice91 Comments

blogging advice? yes!

Blogging Advice

Recently I’ve been getting emails asking for different tidbits of blogging advice so I couldn’t be more excited for this giveaway! I still plan on doing a blogging advice vlog to answer some of your specific questions (even though I’m not an expert), but in the meantime you can enter to win a blogging eBook from Alycia Crowley of the Crowley Party. I had a chance to review “Blogging At The Next Level” and this eBook is packed with valuable information. The eBook is only $5.00 and even includes a free copy of any addition materials Alycia writes. Yay! What you can expect to find in this eBook: TABLE OF CONTENTS DEFINE YOUR SUCCESS………………………………………….. 1 What, Why and “IT”! LOOKS MATTER..………………………………………………….. 6 What makes a good blog design? QUALITY IMAGES………………………………………………… 10 Quick tips for great photography TREAT IT LIKE A BUISNESS……………………………………. 13 Want to make money off of your blog? GETTING […]

       
Share


Filed Under: blogging, Blogging, Blogging Advice32 Comments