Before I started blogging, I was a blog reader. Now, this was back in the days of google reader (I loved it), pre-Instagram and Pinterest, and during a season of my life when I was home with three little ones (and one more soon-to-be on the way). My discovery of blogs was admittedly late, but I fell hard, fast. So much so that I decided to start one up of my own (well, actually two, which morphed into one, but that’s another story).
Here we are, nearly 7 years later, and I still love reading blogs. Granted, it’s a little different now that instagram has become such a quick and easy micro-blogging platform. You can get pretty filled up on inspiration and encouragement and just plain beautiful images after a few minutes of scrolling through. But, there is something wonderful about the extra bit you gain by reading an actual blog post.
Over the years, a majority of blogs have lost their personal, un-polished humanness in exchange for more editorial, pinnable, unique content offerings. There is nothing really wrong with this type of blogging and I have fallen prey to the pressure many times to churn out content that will get the most social shares and look the most professional.
And yet, I always come back around to remembering what it is I like best about blogs I read and what I want for my blog, too.
My favorite blogs are favorites because there is a person behind each post. Someone I like. A woman I would want to be friends with in real life. Sure, she might be a really great decorator or very wise with her words or a taker of beautiful photos, but as I look at my list of current favorite blogs and assess what they all have in common, I see a woman behind the blog who is real and not afraid to be herself online.
This is most definitely my goal as a blog-writer and what I love most about the blogs at the top of my Blogs I’m Lovin’ list.
Real. Unashamed. Imperfect. Confident. Generous and kind.
It’s been 5 years since I shared my favorite blogs (here is the oldie post which still boasts many of my still-favorite blogs). I like to receive blog posts via email and subscribe to quite a few. This list of 7 are among my favorites.
Here they are, in no particular order:
EMILY at Style By Emily Henderson | This spunky, smart, adorable mama of two shines on the camera and makes the most eye-appealing rooms. Her style pushes me in new directions and I love her witty way with words.
SHANNAN at Flower Patch Farmgirl | Goodness. What can I even say about how lovely and vulnerable and real Shannan is on her online space. Her writing is so pretty to read – almost poetic at times – and no matter the subject matter, it is always wrapped in grace and curiosity and a longing for truth. Plus, she doesn’t take herself too seriously and I like that about her. She just wrote a book (you can pre-order it here) and I can’t wait to pour through it.
ASHLEY at Under the Sycamore | Ashley’s blog is a longtime favorite and never fails to offer sweet moments of her life and family with gorgeously candid photos that tell stories on their own. She shares crafts, photo tips and teaches an online photography class called Snap Shops. I love that Ashley seems so comfortable in her own skin. She lives simply, homeschooling her kiddos, raising chickens, creating a happy, colorfully embellished life. I like her.
MYQUILLYN at Nesting Place | ‘The Nester’, as she’s known in blog-land, was one of my first blog reads and who I owe my early blog growth to. She linked to my blog very early on and said nice things and gave me confidence to continue. She has become a real-life friend (I’ll be at her farmhouse this spring!) and a constant decorating/homemaking cheerleader to us readers to stop worrying about perfection and do our thing. Her house style is cozy minimalism with a hint of quirky, which is such a match to her warm, silly personality.
KATE at The Small Things Blog | I first found Kate on Instagram where she is so friendly and approachable. Her blog is filled with hair and makeup how-to videos that just suck me in and I especially like that she talks as if she were sitting right next to you. In fact, I wish she was sitting next to me making me over!
DANA at House Tweaking | You know what really appeals to me about Dana (besides her really, really great sense of style)? It’s how she seems so confident and unaffected by what others think. Not that she’s a rebel or anything, and I don’t know her so I can’t say this is true of her, but she shares her thoughts and ideas and inspiration very matter-of-factly and I appreciate that. She keeps her personal life fairly separate and yet you just know as a reader that she loves her family. Plus, like I said, I’m a big fan of her style and house.
MELISSA at The Inspired Room | Another longtime read with a smart, soft-spoken, hospitable woman behind it all. Melissa talks about houses and shares great decorating tips and solutions, but also goes deeper into creating a house you love. She is a local Seattle blogger who just bought a new (old) house and is making it into her family’s home, one project at a time. She’s also very cool and business savvy and someone I look up to, for sure.
Alright, I’m done gushing. But wouldn’t you agree that behind a really great blog is always a genuine, likable person? I’m thankful for the little piece of goodness that each of these women shares with the world.
Hey … one more thing. Great news! If you’ve been wanting to start a blog (or up your blogging game), Ryan and I teach an all-encompassing online course called The Blog Class.
We cover it all:
- how to start
- why WordPress is worth it
- what to look for in a theme
- creating your blog header and sidebar graphics
- understanding the importance of content
- finding and keeping readers
- the best methods for making money with your blog
And so much more. Seriously. There are over 100 videos with not only concepts, but actual step-by-step instructions to walk you through each step.
If you’ve been on the fence about blogging, let this be a gentle nudge to listen to that desire and go for it! We’d love to be your teachers.