I started blogging in February 2009 in a moment of desperation.
At the time, it had been almost a year since our little guy was born, and we had made the full transition to a one income family (which meant a 75% drop in take home pay). It was a radical change in lifestyle but I was absolutely sure we could pull it off – we canceled our credit cards, starting clipping coupons, discovered deal shopping at CVS, and I was routinely picking up spare change off the sidewalk… whatever it took, we were going to make this work.
We started to hit our stride… we had envelopes with cash in them, new (much more affordable) cell phones, and no more Netflix. I learned to make bread and yogurt and laundry detergent. And it looked like we just might pull it off.
Then we got a very unexpected $3,000 bill for a car repair.
$3,000 — that’s a lot of pennies to find on street corners!
Needless to say, I panicked. We were NOT going to make it if we had to come up with $3,000 for car repairs, or anything else for that matter.
So I did what every other mom in desperate situations do… I started a blog.
I had been reading money saving blogs and seeing how all of these stay at home moms were a generating a really nice source of extra income. Why couldn’t that work for me too, right? I had a swanky degree from an Ivy League college, I had worked for a Fortune 500 company, I had a lap top…
And in the first two months of blogging, I earned 72 cents.
I kid you not.
The problem was that my blog looked ugly. It was the classic white, minima Blogger template that everyone else was using. And it was ugly. Really, really ugly.
So I determined that if I was going to make money with my blog, I needed a make-over. Of course, I wasn’t going to PAY for a blog makeover, I was going to try and win one (I couldn’t justify spending money on a blog that was supposed to be making me money. And my 72 cents wasn’t going to get me very far!)
I entered every blog makeover contest I could find… at least thirty of them. And nada. No luck, no winners, no makeover.
While I was waiting to win it big, SOMETHING needed to be done to make my blog look better.
I started dabbling.
I started playing.
I asked a lot of questions.
I downloaded a lot of free e-books.
I figured out Picasa.
I taught myself how to make a button – it was an ugly button, but it was free.
I downloaded the free trial version of Photoshop.
I taught myself how to make a header – it was an ugly header, but it was free.
And I discovered that I was really enjoying the technical side of blogging. I was enjoying the problem solving and the challenge of learning a new skill. And that people might actually hire me to help them with their blogs.
Hire. Me. to help with their blogs.
Which could help pay for things like groceries and car repairs and trips to Tahiti (just kidding).
And last month I paid the mortgage.
Who would have ever seen it coming?