Yep, here we are ‘in the bleak midwinter’. Have I mentioned before how much I hate January? Very probably! The cold days, the long dark nights, not being able to get outside with the children, endless coughs and colds… I looked up images of wintry scenes and of course they’re all of twinkly snowscapes with bright blue skies. In reality, in the south of England this week it has been occasionally icy, windy, rainy, cloudy, grey and dark with very brief low sunshine breaking through. Sorry, this is turning into a weather report. I’ve always thought that one day, in retirement, it would be nice to spend the winter months living abroad somewhere warm and sunny.
I’m not sure why I got so motivated to get on and do ‘things’ with the blog these last couple of weeks, but I have finally undertaken some stuff that several of my more successful compatriots got on with about 10 months ago!
After going self-hosted a couple of weeks ago I have been adding various useful tools and widgets and then, after what was, really, quite a brief brainstorm, I decided to take the bull by the horns and launch my very own, very first linky, The Truth about… which went live on Tuesday.
I know, I know, I’ve read very similar posts by others in the past too and it’s really a very personal thing. I’ve been putting this process off for, literally, months. I decided to go self-hosted and up my game back in April – probably just round about the time that Sara from Mum Turned Mom posted her really helpful guide at which point I popped over to TSOHost and laid down my fiver for ownership of andthenthefunbegan.co.uk. I also made enquiries immediately with Helen Braid from Ellie Illustrates and assumed that having a re-design would necessitate the move to self-hosted. It turns out that that’s simply not the case – she can design a header which fits in perfectly with the WordPress Forever theme and slot in a nice little page background too with no effort whatsoever on your part. I enjoyed designing my new look but I guess I then laid back on my laurels and just decided not to worry too much about making the big techy move – something which kind of scared me!
Anyone who read my Flat Pack! post on Wednesday will know it’s been all about the new bunk beds this week! Although it felt like a big move – and frankly, a huge transition particularly for EJ who has now gone straight from his cot to a full size single bottom bunk at the tender age of two, I’m glad that we’ve done it. Having said that it hasn’t all been plain sailing. On night one EJ climbed in and went out like a light no problem, but night two he wasn’t quite so docile and cried when I tried to tuck him in and leave. I climbed in with him, sang a lullaby, let him have his milk, tried to leave again but he was having none of it. JJ tried to take over for me bless him, but EJ just wanted his mummy! Eventually I told him I was going to go and have my shower and come straight back and, to my amazement, he agreed! Needless to say he was sparko by the time I returned and we went through the same thing last night too so I’m hoping a routine of sorts is forming and he’ll be comfortable with his new bedtime views very soon ( especially as I’m on my own with them for the next few nights while the hubster works).
In the last week and a half I have had the opportunity to meet up with two lovely new friends I’ve made through blogging – Elfa from Californian Mum in London (who invited me along to a fab beauty promo event at John Lewis) and Hannah from First Time Mummy who lives ten minutes from me and invited me over for tea and a chat. Talking to other bloggers has made me realise that I’m ready to stretch myself a bit more – I’m ready to go self-hosted, make a bit more of an effort with promotion and appearance (which is not to say that I’m not still a little bit in love with the Wizard of Oz header that I designed and Helen from Ellie Illustrates created months and months ago now), and potentially take on a few review gigs.