Today, we get to go behind-the-scenes with Abby. She's a woman of many things: Mother, wife, pen pal (she's had one for almost 20 year!). She chronicles her life with her husband, daughter and two dogs on her blog, and I was so excited to learn that we share the same birthday! I hope you enjoy reading her story. And as always, I'd love to feature you and your blog, so feel free to email me (mellow1422 [at] aol)...
Birthday...Aug 4 (same as President Obama!), 1983
Where are you from...Salt Lake City, Utah
3 words that describe you...happy, hopeful, loving
Occupation...Daycare owner and piano teacher
Blog: Diligent Joy
When did you start your blog...I signed up for Blogger in early 2010.
What inspired you to start a blog?
I love photography but hate scrapbooking. I heard that you could print your blog and thought it would be the perfect way to document my daughter's life. I had no idea that it would turn into such a wonderful and challenging journey.
What do you love the most about blogging? Does anything about it stress you out?
I really enjoy writing and always have (I was the 3rd Grade Creative Writing Award recipient, you know). I love having a place, other than my own personal journal, to write freely. Blogging has encouraged me to challenge myself as a writer, and I'm thankful for that. I also love the fact that blogging has inspired me to become a better photographer (I just purchased my first DSLR and can't wait to use it!). I also love writing about beauty and beauty products. I have a series called The Beauty Aisle (all about hair, makeup, and skin care) that is really fun for me.
Nothing about blogging stresses me out. However, I can see how reading other blogs could become stressful because we have the tendency to compare ourselves to others. I try to avoid that by appreciating the talents (writing, crafting, parenting, photography, etc.) of others instead of wishing I had them, too. I'm never going to turn an old t-shirt into a purse, and that's okay! We all have something unique to bring to the blogging world, and I love that.
If you had to describe your blog in one sentence, what would you say
My blog is about me, my family, the beauty products that I love and my commitment to be happy every day, even when it's difficult -- thus, the name Diligent Joy!
What has blogging taught you?
There are a lot of amazing people in the world. There are a lot of people out there who are doing/writing/creating wonderful things, and I like knowing that I have access to them at all times. I like knowing that I don't have to rely on traditional media for my daily glimpse into the world beyond Salt Lake City. Blogging has expanded my mindset and has been a reminder to me of how diverse (and extraordinary) the world is.
What advice do you have for new bloggers?
People have told me that they tried to blog but couldn't figure it out. New bloggers just need to be patient. Learning a platform like Blogger is like learning a new computer program. It takes a little time and the more you do it, the easier it becomes. Also, new (and old) bloggers should never try to imitate other blogs. The key, I think, is to find your own unique voice and use it.
Where do you see yourself and your blog in 5 years
In 5 years, I'll be in my early 30's. My daughter will be in school (sniff sniff). My husband and I will be home owners, and I might have to finally face the fact that I am an adult (I still feel like a kid). I'm not sure if we will have more children at this point, but I am hoping to do a lot of traveling in the next few years. I'm also planning on becoming a certified yoga instructor and teaching piano full time.
I don't really have a plan for my blog. I'd like to see it grow. People tell me that my blog inspires them, and I love that. It's what keeps me blogging. I'd like to have a bigger audience and hopefully inspire more people.
What has surprised you the most about blogging?
Before I blogged, I had no idea how vast the blogging world really is. I thought that blogging was for moms, crafters and political enthusiasts. I never knew that someone like me would fit in so well. I didn't know that this whole other culture existed. I didn't know about giveaways or sponsors or even guest blogging. Getting to know bloggers from all over the world has been a great experience, and I still find myself being surprised at just how many blogs there are out there.