To celebrate the coming of a 3-year blogging anniversary, it is more than necessary that I finally give you, my devoted and beautiful readers, a way to provide me with all the feedback you've been holding back!
(Prepare for an explosion of thoughts, rambles, and rants. Feel free to read or simply scroll down to the survey!)
A tad early, but this girl is not posting on Sunday. Sunday, being June 26th and the 3-year anniversary (blogiversary) of Strength and Sunshine. Yes, 3 years! I know a thing or two about blogging now. However, I feel like the first year doesn't count for me. Year 1, Strength and Sunshine was a mishmash of different types of posts and I really had no goal or idea of what the hell I was doing (I'm not embarrassed by my first post, though! I think it was great to open the blog with!). Then I nailed it down that Strength and Sunshine would be a food and recipe blog. Niching down further to be a food and recipe blog for those with celiac disease, food allergies, and restrictions. That is exactly what I want and I kind of regret not figuring that out sooner. Now I'm slowly going back to some old posts and revamping them (there are so gem recipes to be found!)
There is a lot to be said about my feelings toward this job, blogging, social media, and what it has done to my life. I don't follow the "rules" or crowd. I just surpassed 5000 Facebook fans over the weekend without sharing a single post from another blogger and only posting once a day. I do not use Pinterest right and pin mostly others' recipes and don't pay for a scheduler, yet I have almost 16000 followers. Twitter? Well, Twitter is Twitter and I have no qualms. Instagram just doesn't understand me, nor do I understand it (sorry, I have a dinosaur Andriod, so it's hard.) Video? Hahaha!
Then we come to the main hub. My home base and the only platform I really care about and want to care about. That's why I'm such a stickler for comments. Blogging was meant for comments, not social media. If you're a blogger, you should be taking care of your blog, readers, and other bloggers first and foremost. After only 3 years, I've seen so many changes in the blogging world. I feel like I started right at the tail-end of the "Golden Age" of blogging before everything started switching over to social-media-based. I'd been a blog reader since I was 12, so I've been in the space even longer, I've seen a lot. The market is so saturated now too (especially food blogging. If you post a recipe blending up dates and nuts, then roll them into bites... it seems you're qualified as "food blogger").
You know I don't sugarcoat things, I have snark, and I say it like it is. You're not going to get one of those clickbaity, "Things I've Learned from Blogging" or "My Favorite Things About Blogging", posts from me today. Everyone writes the same things in those posts and there is no way those are true for everyone who writes them. I will give you a piece of advice or wisdom that I think explains blogging perfectly. Blogging is exactly like high school:
From the cliques and popularity, the different subjects you must learn and homework you must do, to the tests, criticism, and high marks (even report cards in the form of monthly analytics!) you receive. I didn't realize that's how it would be when I started, but it truly is.
"Rebecca, why are you blogging then?" That's a good question. With all the stress, hurt, anger, tears (so many tears), I am still going to always come back. To this. To this little blog of mine. Strength and Sunshine means more to me than I can express. I'm never going to be one of those "big shot, big name" bloggers. If I were, it would have happened already. I'm okay with that. Blogging is NOT my full-time job, nor would I ever want it to be. Strength and Sunshine is simply a home that I built, all on my own, where I can freely share the recipes I create, my passion, and what I hope is helpful advice for those with celiac and food allergies, like myself. Blood, sweat, and tears went into building Strength and Sunshine from the ground up, all on my own. I don't pay for a VA, blogging courses that all give you the same info you can read for free, Facebook ads, Pinterest schedulers, etc. Strength and Sunshine is real, just like life is real. It's not going away either. I'll be here, and if you want to come over to this home (I hope you do!), I will more than welcome you into, my hub, my Strength and Sunshine.
I hope all of you, my true readers, take this survey so I can make Strength and Sunshine not only my home, but your home as well. Sorry for all the Debbie-Downerness again. That seems to happen on these big celebratory occasions (I should work on that!) Please know, that if you are a Strength and Sunshine reader, I appreciate you more than you know Who else would I share my recipes with? I have so many (last count was 114 recipes I have made, written, shot, and are sitting waiting to be posted). If you don't believe me, then I guess you aren't a true Strength and Sunshine fan 😛 What can I say? I've made it all (except marshmallows...still haven't tried that one again!)
So tell me:
+ You don't need to tell me anything, you've already told me enough in that long survey. THANK YOU!
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