5 Things I’ve Learnt from a Year of Blogging

Shortly after giving birth to Baby Lighty last year, Mrs Lighty had the hair brained idea of starting a blog. How difficult could it be, juggling new motherhood and what has now become my second baby, my blog?! And so, in my sleep deprived state of anxiety, a year ago today, I resurrected the blog that I’d registered with WordPress 4 and a bit years previously.

In many ways, my blog is exactly like a baby; it’s something which needs to be constantly maintained, thought about, promoted and generally loved (well ok, maybe Baby Lighty doesn’t need to be promoted, I haven’t quite reached pushy-mother status just yet!). And even though I’d dabbled with my travel blog for years and therefore knew that blogging could be hard work, and despite the demands of a newborn,  I wasn’t put off, and set my blog up I did.

All Things Spliced was born (again), a blog site I’d initially created with the intention of writing about newly married life (hence the girly name despite Baby Lighty being a boy: “Sugar and spice and all things nice, that’s what little girls are made of!” …just in case you were wondering!), but this time I set off with the intention of writing about new motherhood. With my very first post I tentatively started out, and then I slowly garnered a growing confidence due to the positive feedback of my readers.

And so, having not long celebrated Baby Lighty’s first birthday, here we are now, celebrating my first blogiversary! My first bloggy birthday! My very first year of being a genuine mummy blogger that people are actually reading! And that’s the amazing part, that thanks to you lovely lot, it seems that people are actually vaguely interested in what I have to write about. Who would’ve thought it, eh?!

In so many ways, I still have a crazy amount to learn about the world of blogging; I really, really need to work on my blog’s design and I’m starting to think about the holy grail of blogging – going self-hosted – and that’s just the start of my grand plan. But a big part of me also feels that I’ve come so far in this past year. This post, therefore, is a bit of motivational blogivism for all of those new mummy bloggers out there. Here are five things I’ve learnt in the past year of blogging:

  1. Not Everyone will Agree with you, but that’s OK

A life lesson as well as a blogging side product, I learnt very early on that if you’re working with a brand, not everyone will agree with your review of said brand. It’s ingrained in me to want to please everyone, and when I felt like I’d disappointed some of my readers with a review that not everyone agreed with me on, it upset me more than I thought possible (not to mention sent my anxiety spiralling out of control!). Luckily, I’ve generally had very lovely comments on my posts which have spurred me to carry on blogging and has built my confidence to continue working with brands. Not everyone will agree with you, but that’s ok.

2. HTML and other slightly Geeky things!

Ok, so I probably can’t add HTML knowledge to my CV just yet, but who would’ve thought that technophobe Mrs Lighty would suddenly be editing parts of my blog on the code page rather than the visual page? That I’d have to learn about follow and no follow links and how to create them? That I’d know what a text widget was?! Certainly not Mrs Lighty herself, that’s for sure!!

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3. Your Friends and Family will feel the need to add a Disclaimer to most Conversations once you start Blogging

This disclaimer normally goes along the lines of “I read your blog sometimes but not all the time…”. It’s ok, you don’t have to, I’m not the Bloggy Police! Even Mr Lighty doesn’t read all of my posts, and if my own husband doesn’t, I can’t expect everyone else to!!

4. You will Never get over the ‘Cringe Factor’

I originally started this blog for me and Baby Lighty. In the first few weeks (OK, months) I was crippled with new mummy anxiety. Sometimes I would spontaneously burst into tears because I was so worried about something happening to this little tiny person I had created and loved so much. I’m sure I drove my mummy friends mad with my questions and concerns (sorry about that if you’re reading this and were one of them!). Starting up my blog was therefore my way of chronicling that time with a hope of looking back and seeing how far I had come, and maybe creating a treasure trove of memories for Baby Lighty to look back on along the way. I never really intended it to become public. But then one day I told my Facebook baby group about it, and they were really positive about what I’d written so far. So then I found the courage to tell my NCT friends. They were the first of my ‘real life’ friends that I told, and they have continued to support me on my blogging journey ever since, which I’ll always be grateful for. And then one day, I got brave over a cuppa during naptime and told the world (aka Facebook). And that’s when it really all began. But, a year on from blogging, that doesn’t mean that the cringe factor has stopped; it still very much feels like I’m handing my diary over to everyone to read the minute I hit publish. I’m sure I still blush a little whenever anyone says, “oh I read your blog on such-and-such…”. But only just a little.

5. Your Blog will take over your Life (but you’ll Secretly Love it)

I have found myself exclaiming on certain occasions over the past year “This blog has taken over my life! It’s taken over my life!”. I even have an address stamp now which advises recipients that ‘The Lighty Family’, rather than our real name, has sent them post! But ultimately blogging has bought me opportunities beyond what I could ever have imagined were possible, as well as helping me to forge very many lovely bloggy friendships with the wonderful tribe of mummy bloggers out there. A highlight from the past year was being nominated for the MADS, and I even put my blog address on my CV when I applied for my current job! And for all of these opportunities that have come my way via the blog, I’ll always be grateful.

So here’s to my very first year as a mummy blogger! Happy birthday and much gluten free cake, All Things Spliced! xxx

Photos courtesy of our Cake Smash with Day and Knight Photography.

Proud to be linking up with:

A Mum Track Mind
My Kid Doesn't Poop Rainbows
3 Little Buttons
Pink Pear Bear
Mummuddlingthrough
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69 thoughts on “5 Things I’ve Learnt from a Year of Blogging

  1. Happy blog birthday! Well done on reaching a year of blogging- it has come round quickly, hasn’t it?! You have always been my favourite blog to read and I loved following your journey and becoming friends in “real life”. Looking forward to continuing our journey together! Xx

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  2. Happy blog birthday!!! Being Mrs Lynch will be 1 next week! Time goes so quick!!! Here’s to many more successful years!!!

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    1. Ah I assumed that Being Mrs Lynch was older than All Things Spliced (just because yours is so professional in comparison to mine!!). We obviously all had the same idea at the same time, ha!! Xxx

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  3. Happy bloggy birthday! This resonated with me so much, I’ve told a few select ‘real life friends’ about mine, I just can’t bring myself to go public to other people I know for fear of them thinking that I think everyone cares about me and my life! It all feels too personal! Even my Mum doesn’t know about it and my husband knows about it but I won’t let him see it or even come near me when I’m working on it. You’ve got a lovely blog and one you should be proud of, and what a successful year it’s been! #fortheloveofBLOG

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    1. Ah that’s so kind of you to say so! And you should be proud of yours too, I’ve loved reading yours and I love you pics on Instagram too! It does feel very very personal, especially when writing about ‘thoughts’ rather than ‘events’ but I guess that’s what blogging is all about, telling your stories. Thank you for taking the time to read my post πŸ™‚ #fortheloveofBLOG

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  4. Happy ‘blogging’ Birthday. Yes to no. 3 – I have one friend who is particularly at pains to tell me how busy she is so she can’t read all my posts – I will remember your phrase about not being the blogging police! #fortheloveofBLOG x

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  5. Congratulations on your first blog anniversary that id a huge achievement! Ah now i know why your blog is called that. There are some really good tips here, and blogging does take over. I’ve not been brave enough to share my blog with friends and family or promote on my personal Facebook page. I should do really, I don’t really have much to loose. I love blogging and love reading you blog, hearing all about your family life. Thanks for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x

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    1. Ah I can’t believe your blog is a secret!! I’d have hardly any readership if mine were, ha! Yep a random name but I’ve never thought of anything better, so for the moment it stays. Thanks for hosting #fortheloveofBLOG πŸ™‚

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  6. Congratulations on your first blog birthday! I can really relate to a lot of what you mention in this post. I’ve been blogging for only 2 months after just having a baby 3 months before that. I’ve been through the hesitation of telling people and the blushing when random people say they read a post. I even posted about fertility treatment that some of my family and friends knew nothing about – they do now! It’s really hard to put yourself out there but we do and we should be proud. So well done on your first year and may there be many more! #ForTheLoveOfBLOG

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    1. Good for you for posting about fertility treatment! I think it’s good to get things like that out in the open, because otherwise people just don’t think when they ask about people’s plans to have children. I’ve got a post sitting in drafts about our struggle with infertility and mental health, and I’m sure a lot of our friends and family will be shocked that we went through it. Thanks so much for reading my post, I’ll look forward to reading your birthday one in a few months’ time πŸ™‚ #fortheloveofBLOG

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  7. Happy blog birthday totally agree with number 5 it does take over but yes! I love it it’s mine at least that’s the way I feel great post #fartglitter

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  8. Happy Bloggy Birthday! I’m 3 months into blogging and my ‘real life’ friends and family still don’t know about it! (which can be awkward when I keep telling them how busy I can’t tell them why!). I can’t imagine starting a blog with a newborn, though. I’m totally impressed by anyone who can do that! I don’t think I had the mental capacity to even write my name at that stage! hahaha #DreamTeam

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    1. I think I probably had gone slightly mad with sleep deprivation when I made the decision to start a blog at that point in time!! I’m glad I’ve told family and friends about the blog now, but it was scary at the time. Luckily most of them have been very supportive xxx #DreamTeam

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  9. Aw I love this so much and I am totally nodding along at your points. It has absolutely taken over my life too, and as for the disclaimer from friends and family… mine say things like “This is not allowed to become a blog post!” :-/ haha. Happy bloggy birthday my bloggy friend. I can’t believe it’s been nearly a year since I read your post about the WI? I’m probably feeling a bit emosh as I’ve just read this and Bridget’s Tribal post, but I would like to take this opportunity, on your birthday, to say thank you for being such a brill bloggy friend and a very special part of my tribe! Virtual hugs n gluten free cake xx

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    1. Aww same back at you!! 16th September is the anniversary of the WI post, so not quite a year yet but now’s still a good opportunity to say that your friendship has been one of the best things to come out of blogging, so thank you xxx

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      1. Aw Mrs L! That nearly made my eyes leak! Very much back at you lovely, and *mush alert* I might not have met you in real life, but I do very much consider you a “proper” friend. Hugs n cake xxx

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  10. Congrats! I just celebrated my one-year blogiversary too and went self-hosted around the same time – I wish I’d done it sooner! I agree that blogging can take over your life – I spend WAY too much time in front of a computer – but I love it. The community is great and I love that blogging allows me to be creating while tyring to make sense of this whole parenting thing. #dream team

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    1. Ooh I may be coming to you for self hosting tips in that case!! Happy bloggy birthday to you too, raising some virtual fizz to us and all the other awesome bloggers! #dreamteam

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    1. Haha!! Not sure I’ve ever been happy with that but let’s face it, I wouldn’t be blogging if it bothered me that much!! Thanks for taking the time to read my post πŸ™‚ #fartglitter

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  11. As a ‘newbie’ blogger this was a great read. Well done for creating a great blog and reaching 1 year! Look forward to following more of your posts x #fartglitter

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  12. Aww happy blogiversary!! Such a big milestone to reach…I was nodding along to all your points, especially family members admitting they don’t avidly read it haha. Your first point is such wise advice and I had to get used to that too at first. Thanks so much for linking up to #dreamteam

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    1. It really upset me with the first brand I’d worked with. I was so excited about being asked to work with them and then the negative feedback I received about it really put me off. Luckily I’ve been on the end of positive brand and product feedback since! #dreamteam

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  13. I can absolutely agree to all these.
    I always thought I’d never use or care about htmls. But hah, I’ve made my peace with it.

    I also love how my personal and blogging life eclipses somehow.

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  14. Really enjoyed this post- happy blogoversary! Great achievement to reach the 1 milestone so well done. I get the , same from friends and family, they’ll like my posts on facebook or twitter but they won’t have actually read the post- but I don’t mind they are sharing it to a wider audience so win win! I also get the- please don’t put this in the blog, it’s like I have to tell them ‘this is off the record’ haha #dreamteam

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    1. Haha! I’ve never actually had anyone ask me not to put things in the blog, maybe my friends are too trusting?! To be fair I do always ask permission if I am going to write about them or include a photo. Yes very true about the liking and sharing, definitely win win. Thanks for taking the time to read my post πŸ™‚

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  15. Great post! Happy blogiversary! I also get major cringe factor when I get people telling me they read my stuff. Even though they are always complimentary! Thanks for joining us at the #bigpinklink

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    1. Yes it’s a weird one isn’t it?! I guess they’re never going to say “what a pile of crap you published the other day”, but it’s still putting your life out there which is scary, as everything in the public domain can be judged. Thanks for hosting #bigpinklink πŸ™‚

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  16. Congrats on reaching your one year anniversary! As with so many things in life, it is definitely important to recognise that you can’t agree with everyone and not everyone will agree with you. And it’s okay to agree to disagree. In fact. life would be very dull if we all agreed on everything! #BigPinkLink

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    1. Yes this is very true! I think I was more disappointed that I felt that is disappointed others! But lessons learnt for the future. Thanks for taking the time to read my post πŸ™‚ #BigPinkLink

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    1. Ah thank you! I often feel like I’ve still got so much more to learn, but then I look back and think I’ve done ok!! Thanks for taking the time to read my post πŸ™‚

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  17. Happy blogiversary! Here’s to many more to come! Feel like I’m still learning these things and I’ve been going for a bit more than a year now.

    #fartglitter

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  18. Congrats on your 1 year blogging, I’m 6 months in now, and I can agree with those statements, especially the taking over your life bit! I have learnt so much already, but I know there is loads more to come. I had a meltdown the other day, got some advice from a great friend, who told me I would laugh about it in the future and should blog about it! #coolmumclub

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  19. Yay, congrats on your first bloggiversary! Such an exciting milestone and the first of many im sure πŸ™‚ Loved reading this post and totally agree, the family disclaimer always makes me laugh, even now lol. Emily #coolmumclub

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    1. Haha, glad it made you laugh!! I know, you do kind of think “what hope do I have when my own family and friends don’t always read my blog?!”, ha!! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for taking the time to read my post xxx

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  20. Happy blogiversary. It sounds like you’ve had quite a year. I started blogging in October and had some stop and start moments, recently coming back into it and reading this has given me lots of motivation, inspiration and hope. Thanks! #coolmumclub

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  21. I totally agree with all of these points, especially number 4…although at 18 months the cringe factor has slightly abated it is still most definitely present but tends to manifest itself in different forms! Thanks for linking up with #coolmumclub lovely lady xx

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  22. Wow, I’m totally intrigued about the brand part – I am yet to encounter any real upset or disagreements from the blog but I know it will happen! You have totally aced out your first year. We all love your blog! Thanks for linking up to #coolmumclub xx

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