August 13, 2017

You can start a blog in 11 minutes, according to a blogger named Jacob.  The instructions are here.  Good luck.

Unless you’re me, then you can start a blog in 2 months and 12 days because what’s the rush?

First I needed a laptop.  When Jeff was out of town, I spent an evening at Best Buy picking out the perfect blogging laptop which would magically give me new skills.  The next day when Jeff returned home, the two of us brought the newly purchased laptop back to Best Buy together so he could help me pick out a laptop that actually made sense.  Over 27 years of marriage, we each have our areas of expertise.  For example, I pick out lots of good books, travel destinations, and bedding.  He chooses building materials, rescue dogs, and computers. It’s a good system.

Once the right laptop is purchased, you need how-to-blog lessons.  Within days of deciding on this new hobby, Jen Hatmaker (my favorite blogger) referred her readers to her blog professional, Micah Murray, along with a promo code for his “Clumsy Bloggers Workshop.” Done.

A professional photo is recommended, and as a bonus, I got to catch up over coffee with my photographer friend, Autumn Young, who is, of all things, moving into an RV with her husband this fall.  How awesome is that?!

Here’s a fun thing about photos.  You can get touched up with the click of a button.  White teeth–click.  If only it were that easy in real life, but after the swimming pool incident of 1970-something, and the subsequent fake tooth, I can have white teeth just as soon as I have enough disposable income for porcelain veneers.  I’m sure everyone can relate to this, right? A week in Jamestown, ND with cousins, racing out of the pool as fast as my little 7-year-old body would take me to escape those cousins who I was sure were going to drown me, and chipping my tooth on the side of the pool.  I don’t really know how old I was, but it feels like I was 7.  Also, I never learned to swim.  I blame Jamestown.

But in photos, I can have white teeth.

Now you need the name of your blog–the domain name, this is a thing you purchase, along with a hosting site.  Choosing to not be creative at all, I chose

Once you’ve done this, all you need are the words.

Once I decided to blog, the words left.  Things I had instead:  a blank mind, blank screen, no new ideas, and an extra dose of anxiety.  We don’t have to let these things stand in our way. But we can think about all of it for 4 weeks or so waiting for “the right time.”

During my 4 weeks, I read a great post by Joshua Becker, one of my favorite bloggers.  His blog is:  Becoming Minimalist.  Here are the 15 reasons he thinks we should blog.

I read his book The More of Less last year and I sincerely believe someday I’ll grow into a lifestyle that resembles minimalism.  For whatever reason, my soul longs for this simplicity.

Joshua claims by blogging “You’ll live a more intentional life” and “You’ll develop an eye for meaningful things.”  These were benefits I didn’t expect, but seem to be true.  There is a new awareness in my life just in the last couple weeks.  I like it.

I had my own reasons for starting a blog, mainly because writing is therapeutic.  I write it down, and I feel better.  Sometimes there is feedback I don’t expect, and it encourages me, challenges me, and almost always makes me feel less alone.  With all the stuff going on in the world that feels scary and heartbreaking, writing helps me process my feelings and connect to other people.

Also, writing is free, and real therapy isn’t.  At least this is what I believed.  According to blog-in-11-minutes guy, you can start this new blog for $7.  Again, I have my own path.  After the laptop, workshop, hosting site, domain name and phone consultation with Micah, it was more like $907, but still.  It’s possible I would’ve spent more than that on real therapy.

A few years ago a pastor or speaker said something like, “You should always be doing something that scares you.”  The concept stuck with me.  The person who said it?  That part left my brain.  But since hearing this idea, it pushed me to go to Haiti in 2015, something the old me never would’ve considered.  It also helped reassure me of my life choices when my husband and I sold our house and took off in an RV last year for a much-needed sabbatical. Blogging is the newest scary thing.  I thought you needed confidence to blog, but you really don’t.  You just need a little courage to type it and then push publish.  Like I’m going to do now.

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