This post is sponsored by Amazon Fashion & Isotoner. Thank you so much for supporting the brands that I truly love and that make this blog possible 🙂
My number one question has always been how I started blogging and how others may be able to start their own blog. I am super excited to kick off this series of blog posts with Amazon & Isotoner to tell you all about how I started blogging, the process of it over the past 9 years, how I work from home and even how to begin your own blog and community! Today’s post will concentrate on how I started blogging and how my blog has evolved over the past 9 years. The second post will move into how I work blogging into my daily schedule and routine at home and the last and final post will be all about how you can begin your own blog at home and tips and tricks to finding success!
First, let’s chat a bit about my typical work uniform at home. I am always in relaxed mode and I typically wear some sweats and a cozy top with my Isotoner slippers. You guys are really going to LOVE the price on these! They’re only $21 and what I love most about them is the hard sole. I even take these on walks with Winston and even to drop my kids off at school (don’t judge me). My favorite Isotoner slipper is this cable knit pattern with the faux fur on top! They come in oatmeal and rose color as well! They also have “360 technology” which means that there is memory foam all around the foot for a 360 degree comfort fit. Lastly, they have SmartDri Technology as well which eliminates sweaty feet!
Back in 2008 when I first started working in the ER as a Physician Assistant, my life and mindset completely changed. I met so many people without homes, without a support system and without healthy minds. Many patients would come to the ER just for warmth, comfort and food. It opened my eyes to so many different things and some of it was very hard for me to process. I couldn’t understand why others’ had to live this way while I was able to go home after a long day and relax in on my couch with a hot meal. I also experienced illness and trauma that I will never be able to erase from my mind. People taken away far too soon and illness that knew no boundary, affecting those of any age. It took me almost a year to “get used to” my new normal. Heading into work and knowing that what I experience that day may be engraved into my mind forever. The ER is not for the faint of heart, it can be a very difficult place to work and it can be extremely difficult to separate from once you leave your shift for the day.
I went back in day after day and loved it more and more. It became a part of me and now that I’ve been in the ER for almost 10 years, I can honestly say that I will never work anywhere else. I love the stress of it all, the chaos and the drama. I feed off of it and it makes my 12 hour shifts fly by. I love being able to help others in just the few hours that I have with them. Give them comfort and hope. However, I needed something to be able to decompress. I needed an outlet that would allow me to leave my career at the end of the day and venture into something more creative. I have always had a creative side and I wanted to use it. This is when I started my first blog, “From Skirts to Skillets”.
My first blog was mostly focused on fashion. I would put outfits together and link them and talk about recent trends or what I was planning on doing for the weekend. It was very laid back and I made $0 dollars from my blog for the next few years. I would check out my other favorite blogs at the time, Cupcakes & Cashmere being one that I would check out daily. I would comment on them and I really enjoyed reading them (something that not many do these days due to all the social media that is available to us). Instagram did not exist and some days I think it was better in the days before Instagram. Blogs were almost like the newspaper. You would get up in the morning with your cup of jo and sit back reading a few blogs before starting your day….
I can’t remember exactly when I started to look into making this more into profit but I want to say it was about 3-4 years. I did have companies that would send clothing or accessories from time to time and it was amazing. I loved being able to pick out a piece to style on my blog and I would link back to the shops, but there was never any compensation involved.
I deleted “From Skirts to Skillets” one year after a trip to NYFW. I was taken back by the vibe that I felt while I was there and questioned my journey into blogging. However, after a few months, I realized that I missed my creative outlet and that’s when “Sparkling Footsteps” was born. A funky name that I would later come to regret 😉 A year or two after becoming Sparkling Footsteps, I looked into ad revenue and other opportunities to make some income. I was working full time at the hospital and blogging quite frequently and figured, “Why not make a few bucks if I can?”
I was able to make a few dollars here and there with some ads on my website and working with a few brands. The compensation was low but I was so excited to actually be compensated for my time that I didn’t mind. It wasn’t until around 2011 that I actually started making some minimal income. Most of my income was from Rewardstyle. Rewardstyle is a company that allows influencers to affiliate link to stores and make a small commission off of purchases. I would create collages of pieces I loved and link to items. I also worked with a few brands on “sponsored” posts, only focusing on brands that I truly loved and that fit my brand & aesthetic. Turns out that over the next few years, blogging really took off and brands realized how powerful influencers can be for their businesses. Many brands were hiring bloggers instead of celebrities to represent their brand because they were more relatable. This meant good news for me and I jumped on the opportunity to make a bit more income.
There are several platforms, Collectively, Megan Media, Tap Influence, Social Stars, just to name a few that allow you to create an account and have brands reach out to you. If you’re a good fit for their current campaign, they ask you if you want to work together. You can negotiate pay and make sure that they are a great fit for your brand and move forward. This would be the way I built up my income over the next few years.
Fast forward to 2017 and I cannot even begin to fathom how I got here. I am so incredibly thankful for where blogging has taken me and how it’s given me the ability to stay home part time with my children. It’s also given me the opportunity to meet so many amazing mothers within the blogging community. The support that I have received has been so amazing and I could never thank you all enough for that. You truly are the reason why I continue to blog and I hope that this blog continues to be a place where you can find support and tops/tricks for anything related to motherhood.
Thank you all so much for taking the time to read my little spot here on the web and for all of your continued support, it honestly means the world to me.
If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments or email me and I can include a little FAQ in my next blog post for you!