I wanted to share the evolution of my blog, the business of it, and where it is today. Thanks so much for following me on this journey!
First Computer & NSYNC
When my dad first purchased me a Hewlett-Packard computer when I got to 6th grade, I remember going on dial-up and using Net Zero to surf the internet for pictures of the boy band NSYNC. Yes, I know I’m a dork. Somehow, that turned into me teaching myself HTML from online tutorials and creating a website about NSYNC. That lasted about 4 years.
Then, I was able to get hosted by a huge NSYNC fan club for my website. After that, I was like, “Dang, I’ve made it on the internet.” Silly little me.
College & Facebook
Then, I went off to college. This was the era before Facebook. Facebook had just been introduced my junior year of college, so it wasn’t big yet. What’s crazy is that I remember showing my sorority sister Facebook for the first time and it was viewed as “stalkerish” at that point. Ha!
Before that time, I had hosted a personal blog (I didn’t know it was a “blog” at the time) where I would post photos of my college experience online. Thankfully, the school server erases all of that stuff when you graduate. Whew! I was the girl who ALWAYS has a camera. So my friends and family should all know I have pictures that I can blackmail you with…muahahahha. Kidding. I would never do that.
DSLR & The Business
In early 2009, Ryan pushed me to buy a DSLR. I had NO IDEA what DSLR was. This was before we were even married. At the time, I was happy with my point and shoot, and the only thing I cared about when picking out a camera was the megapixel. And when I started my research on purchasing a DSLR, I remember feeling very overwhelmed by all the different options and features. We finally decided to buy our first camera: the Canon 50D. We definitely overpaid for it. And Ryan finally found me a hobby so I would quit nagging him on the weekends to do stuff!
After playing around with it, I wanted to start a business. I’ve always had this entreprenuerial spirit. So I decided to open a photography business and I charged only $50 at the time for portraits! Ah! Crazy right? Let’s just say I’ve come a long way since then.
After that, I decided that I wanted to be more professional. So in September of 2009, I started a blog named after what our friends had nicknamed us as a couple, “Sengerson“. This was purely to showcase images of my clients. I also started a mini-blog about my personal adventures because I wanted to showcase everything Ryan and I were doing. Not because we were showboats, but because our family and friends loved seeing the updates on what we were doing.
Personal Blog with DIY Projects, Home Decor, Marriage, and Motherhood
I started documenting our journey then as a married couple and showcasing some of Ryan’s DIY projects both on the blog and on Facebook. Pretty soon, everyone was commenting on our crazy but awesome home DIY projects.
I also showcased our first home together on a shop/garage that sat on 5 acres, half an acre which was our garden. I never really got an itch to decorate or invest in any furniture because it wasn’t our “forever home.”
After that wild ride, we moved, had three babies, a new house, and no furniture. My hobby/obsession then became home decor and home furnishings as well as mom related stuff. Honestly, we had no furniture for the first two years because I didn’t want to spend any money on furniture that I didn’t love and I was not going to settle. So, my taste run sometimes on the expensive side, so that meant I would have to wait. With three babies under the age of four with three full daycare payments, that meant that I would have to wait a long time.
I would spend countless hours pouring over Ballard Design, Pottery Barn, Restoration Hardware, and Basalm Hill catalogs. I slowly started decorating my home and sharing my awesome cheap finds, DIY copy cat projects, and my splurges on the personal blog.
Keep It Personal with Clients
I found that my photography clients would find my personal blog and often comment when we met in person about my projects. That was my catalyst in merging my personal and photography blog together, which would allow my clients could get to know me as a person.
Why Do People Blog
Then, I heard about mommy blogs after getting pregnant. Some of the blogs I visited felt like they were all ads for a product and didn’t make sense with that specific blog. There were some great ones that told personal stories that didn’t feel like it was an ad. I’ve always wondered why do people blog outside of sharing their personal stories. I knew that it had to be income, so I was curious on how they made their moolah.
My friend Brandi introduced me to Sandy at work, who is a professional blogger/entrepreneur. She taught me all there is to know about blogging as A BUSINESS. She is amazing and has a heart of a teacher. She taught me how you can use your blog to turn our hobbies and passions into something that also produces income, that can then be returned to fueling your hobbies and passions (and also potentially providing a great supplement to your income). She has also taught me the community around the blogging world – I’ve made so many friends in this space that its unreal. It is not only an amazing creative outlet, but its seriously feels like a sorority of amazing friends (like the KC Blogger Meet up, which is now the Blog Guild).
Sandy also taught me that brands who love YOU as a person/brand will seek you out to SEND you stuff that you LOVE to just write about. What. Wait a minute. Brands that I like already. Will send me stuff for free. Just to write about how much I love it. And to share my love of their stuff to my audience? Win. Win.
My photography, love of home decor and trials/tribulations of motherhood have now been an amazing way for me to share my clients’ stories via photos as well as my own personal adventures with a wonderful audience while providing my family a steady stream of income (and paying those daycare bills). I LOVE blogging and how it allows me to be real and authentic all while promoting products and businesses I LOVE.
On the other hand, the business of blogging sometimes provides me a chuckle when I am presented an opportunity to blog about adult diapers and personal lubricant. When you guys see me at that level, please tell me to get off the internet.
For now, I’m going to continue to share my projects that I make Ryan do for me, products that make it easier for me as a working momma, and my personal journeys as a wife, mother, career woman, and entrepreneur.
Thank you, clients, readers and followers, for being a part of my journey!
Photo Credit: Sarah Sweeney