Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Truth, Heart, and New Dierection of Potlucks on the Porch

It's a novel, but please read :)!

The Dreamy Bloggy Beginning
Right after my twins were born in 2010, I discovered the world of blogging. I knew about family blogs, but I had NO idea what creative wealth and inspiration existed in the blogoshphere! During the long hours while feeding those two babies, I read craft blogs, sewing blogs,cooking blogs and all other sorts {yeah, I know, I "should" have been looking into their eyes, singing, and teaching them the ABC's}.

I became so inspired and felt that I was already a part of the blog world world without even writing one word or posting one picture on ANY blog. I even dreamed about blogs, and I'll admit some of my favorite bloggers were literally my friends in those dreams.  I was THAT into it. Sometimes I could't sleep because I was so excited to start a blog. Yeah, I really am a nerd, I know :)! 

As soon as I got a handle on life, my sister and I started a blog... it didn't fly. Then a few months later, we rounded some of our greatest friends together and started Potlucks on the Porch. We started it because we wanted to share ideas, and  found out that bloggers can earn money. We worked hard, and even for a short time we did have a little money coming.

Our discovery, however, was that making money on a blog is hard!. We also found that simply writing a blog post takes more work than we EVER imagined! Some of us also felt that the blog just didn't fit with our life and family. Blogging takes passion or it just doesn't happen, and certainly, not everyone is cut out to be a blogger. 

We went from a post almost every day of the week when we started, to barely one post a week now :). Ya, realized that we couldn't just snap our fingers and have a blog post published. Oh the time and mental effort...!

So, what happened to our blogging team? Jenn and Maren decided that blogging was not for them... truly, life is too short to do something you don't love if it's not bringing benefits you need or want.  Lauralee is pregnant, and Jan just had a baby. They stopped blogging for a while, and they may come back. As for me... call it passion or foot stomping determination... I'm still here, and here are the reasons.

But First, a Little More History...

My little family moved from Utah county to Las Vegas in June. Moving ALWAYS tires me out. It takes a while for me to get going again with anything afterwards. Also, I'll admit that truly my first reason to join the blog world was because it inspired and lit me up inside. My second reason, however, was that I noticed that my favorite bloggers did it as a business. I thought that it sounded really great to be a stay at home mom, and earn a little extra cash through blogging! 

At the time we started Potlucks on the Porch, my family desperately needed some money. My husband and I have had major financial crashes in our married life. His business  didn't take off the way we hoped and planned, and after years of thinking it would, it never did. I know that we weren't the only ones, and other people who've gone through it know how rough and desperate those times are. 

Thankfully though, he changed his path and started nursing school just after my twins were born. Even though it was SUCH a roller coaster of a time with 4 kids under the age of 5,  my husband in school, and being dirt poor... I am so grateful.  He finished school and the hellish testing period, then landed a great job here in Las Vegas.  I never thought that an RN could earn the money he does. Again, he's and RN, so obviously it's not like millions or anything, but it's an income that meets our needs. We can pay all of our bills, we have enough to save, and we even have a little bit to spend on some fun extras.  It's a huge blessing.

He'll be really embarrassed when he know I put this picture on here :)!

Thanks to the blessing of having enough, I don't have to stress out about working. I don't have to turn this blog into a money making business. So, right now, I'm not!!! One day though, once all my kids are in school I might focus on turning it into a business again, who knows?

I do know that I really enjoy blogging. It definitely is a passion for me.   I do want to keep it up. However, I don't want it to be my "other child", or even my job. as it was this past year.

I'll admit, I felt exhilaration when some of my posts went around Pinterest.  I loved it when bloggers I  admire gave me some attention.  I realize that this blog is just one of the millions of small blogs in the blogosphere, and it felt good to get recognition from Six Sisters' Stuff and featured by Tater Tots and Jello. It's like when the most popular kid in high school gives you some attention... feels good. But, that's not what matters to me.

Getting Closer

Now for the heart of it all...  When I was a child my mom had to work. I remember just craving being around her. I missed her so much. She often needed extra naps to make up for the sleep she missed, and I would sit outside her door and just wait for her to wake up.

She drove me on my paper route, and even though I hated throwing and smelling those newspapers, I relished the time I had with her. It was more precious to me than I realized.

When I was 16 years old, she passed away in a car accident. Obviously my world was crushed, and I've never stopped missing her. It was the lack of having a mom at home that made me understand how important moms are.

 One thing I knew for sure at that time was that I wanted to be a full time stay at home mom if it was at all possible.  I know that it's not possible for every woman. Some women need work to keep sane, others need it to support their families. I'm not making judgments on anyone. This was just the path I chose when I understood what was of the most importance to me, and what I felt God wanted for me.

I am very thankful that after some serious financial troubles, we're at the point that I know my husband can provide. That makes a huge difference for me in regards to this blog.  Right now I won't be entering in all kinds of link parties, stressing about what people want me to post about, or even caring about all the stats... because I'm not focusing on making money.


My focus for this blog is things that "light me up".  I want to honor my heritage and my posterity. That's what matters most to me. I come from a line of amazing men and women who taught me so much. I want to pass their wisdom, and gems that I've gained along the way to my children, and to anyone that may benefit.

I've had so many questions during the 9 years that I've been a mom. Times when I wished so much that I could just call my mom or grandma and ask for a recipe or what to do in certain situations. I wished that I had a record of things they made for me, and activities they did with me.

I hope that one day my children will have access to those kind of things, and I feel like this blog is a tool for that.

I always wish for REAL gems that teach me how to be a mom, a wife, and just a great woman (including practical, beautiful, and spiritual). That's the stuff I'll include here.  Not that I'm an expert, I learn as I go.  I'm a very religious person, but didn't want this blog to be too religious because I want people of all faiths to relate here. I hope people of all faiths feel welcome here. I also want to share ways that help my family live our faith better.

 My major in college was family science, and I learned great things about family life. I may include some of my insights in those areas too too. My career was teaching LDS seminary to High school kids in the Church Educational System. It was a joy, and I want to include more about those most important things to me.

I do know that a mom needs something that's her own.  Time to sharpen her own saw. I feel like this blog did that for me this past year, we'll see what happens now. I still LOVE tutorials, craft, and recipes and will include them. I also have dreams of writing books, starting my own non-profit organization, and traveling the world. I'm planting the seeds of those dreams here.

So.... there's the truth and the heart of the current status of Potlucks on the Porch :)! Stay tuned, and we'll see where it goes from here.


P.S. The layout of the blog will eventually change, such as pictures and logos, but it may be a while :).

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  1. Replies
    1. Thanks for reading Emily! You're a good friend <3!

  2. Nancy, I am so glad you're still here! You have always been my hero and I love to follow your life and thoughts and experiences this way. Love ya!!!

    1. Love you too, Jenn!! You're such an important person in my life <3! I just wish I could see you more often.

  3. You are inspiring me on a Tuesday morning. My twins are now 15 months and seem to be more demanding than ever. My own blogs have definitely taken the brunt of that and I don't have the natural ability to be a 100% devoted mother to my 4 boys. Keep working at it. That is my take-away. Keep working at all of it. Thanks, Nancy!

    1. Thanks so much, Michelle!! I really appreciate you taking the time to read and write back to me. I just realized who you are... Maren's S-I-L, right? I just read through some of your posts, and you totally inspire me!!!!! I LOVE that you take off and explore! That's one of my dreams too! Big time! Thanks for keeping in touch. I'm excited to keep reading your blog too! Did you change the name?
      Thanks so much for the advice too! Work is what it takes. Good luck with those twins and the blogs... I know, some days are the best ever, and some are hard!!
      Thank you, Michelle!


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