Learning to Blog

Just Write Something!

As a new baby fern frond unfolds, so does a newborn blogging life begin…

There are many blogs on the internet today, so why start your own?  I think a better question is, Why Not? I am not looking for praise and thousands of adoring followers (though a few, besides my mom, would be gratifying).  I just want to add my voice and chronicle life as it happens.  Learning new things can be difficult, so why not share what we’ve learned along the way?  Google “How to Start a New Blog”, and you are inundated with responses.  It can be overwhelming enough to make you re-think your desire to write and share online.  So I’ll be sharing what I learn as I start this new blog, and hopefully that information will be helpful to others (maybe to you!) as you learn along with me.

Here’s where I’m getting my info for starting the blog so far:




I had to google “how to insert link in wordpress post” just to write those last three lines. Because I’m such a newbie.

I knew I wanted my blog to be self-hosted (after research, self-hosting seems the best way to leave all of your options open for earning income from it as your blog grows and expands), and they all recommended bluehost, so that’s what I went with. I paid around $72 for a year.  It would have been cheaper per month to commit to three years, but that’s kind of a huge commitment when you are not sure if you and blogging are going to be besties, so I opted for one year.

But wait there’s more!

What I did not realize, though, is that all of these folks were also going to recommend that I use a premium (as in, not free) framework and theme, which would amount to spending more money.  After looking through many premium themes (they are as numerous as grains of sand on the seashore), I decided to go with a free theme, because I am not made of money (as my mom would say)!  I can always upgrade/switch later if it is necessary.

Now to choose a theme:

I made a newbie mistake and went straight to wordpress.org and downloaded a theme.  Then I realized I had no idea how to get said theme onto my blog.  So I went back to the blog and on the sidebar, there’s a tab called Appearance.

From there, you can click on Themes.

Then I chose wordpress.org themes and went to feature filter. This allows me to focus only on the free themes that meet my specific criteria.

Then I’m like, “Wait? Do I have criteria?”

I decided to keep it pretty broad, so I only checked the box for photoblogging and a right sidebar, because those were the only two things I knew for sure I wanted to focus on.  Aaagh, so much to learn!  But I love to learn, so that’s ok.

Then I found one that was visually appealing and clicked on it.

Note: I would suggest checking that

  • the theme has been updated recently
  • it has been downloaded by many users
  • it has positive reviews

The one I liked checked all those boxes, so I looked at the preview to get a better idea of what it would like full screen on my computer.  I think I found a winner!  I chose Rara Clean and downloaded it.  Because I did it through my wordpress blogging dashboard, it automatically installed for me.  Nice!

I’m sure there will be much tweaking involved, but this is a start.  And I have lots to do today, including filling orders for my Etsy shop, Old Trace Designs, folding laundry, and considering de-cluttering my house using the KonMari method I’m reading about in The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

So looky there: my first real blog post with actual, useful information! Goal #1 for the day is accomplished!


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