Three-Year Blogiversary

I attended the Writer’s Digest Conference three years ago, with hopes of successfully pitching a book that I had written to some of the top literary agents in the country. One of the biggest pieces of feedback I received was that I needed to create a bigger social media platform, and that one of the best ways to do that was to begin blogging. I tried to explain that I didn’t have much to talk about, and even when I did, I’ve always had better success getting a response from myself in the mirror than from other people. (That was a joke, in case you were concerned…)

I created my blog and tried to incorporate as many interesting aspects as I possible could. Between poetry, posts on achieving happiness, traveling experiences, and daily journeys, I had hoped that I could maintain the interest of just a few fellow bloggers, or at least my mother. Well, here we are three years, over 500 followers, and 101 posts later. I couldn’t have made it this far without each and every one of you, and I truly mean it.

A little inspiration goes a long way and I was hoping to help inspire any and all followers that would be joining me on my blogging experience. Little did I realize though, that within these few years, my fellow bloggers would be the ones inspiring me. You have all inspired me through your blog posts, comments on my posts, pushes to continue writing, and especially through your encouragement and motivation to not only make me a better person and writer, but a better blogger as well. And to be quite honest, that is more than anything I could have ever imagined or asked for, and for that, on this three-year blogiversary, I’d like to celebrate with all of you.

I ask that you help me celebrate my blogiversary by commenting with the link to your blogs so that others can follow you all as well. My fellow bloggers have opened so many doors for me, so I’d like to try to help open at least one for you. And with that, I’d like to make a toast to my fellow bloggers for helping me make it this far and for welcoming me with open arms into the world of blogging. If you want to treat yourself to some cake or champagne, by all means help yourself so that we can really get the celebration going! (The best part of an online party is that I don’t have to supply the food or drinks and you don’t have to supply the presents!) I hope that this experience continues for years to come, especially so that I don’t have to go back to talking to myself in the mirror. (Again, a joke.)

Wishing You the Happiest of New Years

I have spent the past few months debating how I would make my comeback to the world of blogging. If you have been following my posts over the past few years, you’ve probably noticed that I was unsuccessful at finding the perfect excuse to make up for my absence. Out of fear for being gawked at by the blogging community (and quite frankly, myself too), I won’t spend too much time mentioning that the last time I posted on here was last New Year’s Eve, promising to post more often throughout the new year. I also will try to not shed too much light on the fact that I don’t recognize the updated WordPress layout, and it took me a second to remember the password to my account. You know how it is when life gets in the way, or at least you know how we use that excuse to cover up for our procrastinations. But enough about that. The New Year starts in just a few hours, and for those of you who aren’t already drinking and celebrating, like myself, odds are, you’re probably debating what kind of New Year’s resolution to set for yourself. Will you finally try to shed some weight, or will you decide to go ahead with the plans of taking your dream vacation? Will you spend more time with family and friends, or will you dedicate this next year on receiving a promotion at work? As you can tell from last year’s resolution on my blog exactly one year ago (which is probably the post underneath this one), I swore to blog more and continue writing for all of my readers (aka my mother), but more importantly for myself. I clearly didn’t go through with that resolution, so here is a little guideline that I will be trying my best to adhere to this next year. I hope it will help you in your resolution-making process, so here it goes.

~Here’s to saying, “I love you” more often, and meaning it when we address those we care for.
~Here’s to rekindling old relationships that have been on our to-do list, while strengthening the relationships we already have.
~Here’s to learning how to trust, both in others and in ourselves.
~Here’s to trying to find a positive in every negative situation we encounter.
~Here’s to making an effort to find joy each and every day, while accepting sadness and using it as a means of finding a positive in every trying obstacle we encounter.
~Here’s to laughing much more than we already do, and making time to laugh at ourselves as well.
~Here’s to knowing that it’s okay to cry if we need to.
~Here’s to not caring about what others think of us, and only caring what we think of ourselves.
~Here’s to enjoying the nature around us and appreciating what we have and our surrounding environment.
~Here’s to planning a trip, whether it be across the country, across state boarders, or even across the street to catch up with a long-lost friend; but here’s to executing this plan and actually going through with it.
~Here’s to setting goals, and attaining every goal we set.
~Here’s to understanding that mistakes are inevitable, can and will occur throughout our lives.
~Here’s to getting back up after being knocked down by a temporary failure.
~Here’s to eating healthier, but not forgetting the importance of splurging on a heavenly piece of chocolate cake.
~Here’s to exercising more often so that our doctors can leave us alone.
~Here’s to saving up money for a rainy day, but keeping enough around to binge on an exciting shopping adventure.
~Here’s to finding a hobby and finding a passion, and fully enjoying them both.
~Here’s to learning a new skill, trait, or language, and sticking with it until we have mastered it efficiently.
~Here’s to anticipating the future, but always remembering to live in the moment.
~Here’s to connecting to spirituality, whether it be through religion, a high being, or just finding one’s own peace.
~Here’s to finding meaning in each of our lives in all that we do.
~Here’s to making a difference, not just in our lives, but in someone else’s life.
~Here’s to giving without expecting to receive, and receiving with the utmost appreciation.
~Here’s to hoping I don’t regret not having proofread this before leaving my house.
~Here’s to blogging more than once a year so I can see what it’s like to post on days other than New Year’s Eve.
~Here’s to an incredible year ahead of us filled with health, happiness, and an abundance of love and support.

From the bottom of my heart, Happy New Year and it’s great to be back here with you.

New Year

New Year’s Blogging

So I keep getting this voice in my head that continuously reminds me that I haven’t blogged in almost a year. And the last time I posted something was about how I was going to start posting more often since I had been slacking. Well, you all can understand how life gets in the way and how some of us tend to put things off until we “find the time,” but I’m tired of making excuses so here we go.

With nearly fifteen minutes left in 2013, I wanted to post something committing to making a promise. I didn’t want to wait until next year to start anew because I wanted to end this year and begin the next one on a positive note. I will blog more throughout this upcoming year. There. I said it and now it’s published for the WordPress world to see.

This past year has been a great one, and I can’t exclaim how fortunate I have been throughout 2013. With another year soon to be in the past and a new one arriving shortly, I think it’s safe to say that 2014 is going to be a year filled with love, happiness, blessings, and incredible opportunities for each and every one of us. I hope you all have a great evening enjoying the remnants of 2013 and welcoming in the start of a New Year, and remember, it’s never too late to make any kind of resolution (Says my guilty conscience from not blogging enough this past year). Happy New Year to each of you and I can’t wait to share it with you all.

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My One Year Blogaversary

Now that I’m back from my spring break cruise to the Bahamas, I no longer have a an excuse to not blog. So here we are, with this hopefully being the first of many steady posts to come. As you can tell, its been a while since I blogged consecutively, so there’s definitely a lot of ground for us to cover so I can catch you up on everything. On January 20th, I celebrated my one year blogaversary. I received a notification saying it was my one year anniversary of my Hurdles to Happiness blog, but since I had taken a break from blogging, I smiled and left it at that. I didn’t arrange for any festivities, I didn’t post anything about it, nor did I invite my fellow bloggers to celebrate with me. But everyone loves a good celebration, and with you all by my side, there’s no one else I would rather celebrate with.

I’ll get to the celebration part of this post soon, but first, I’d like to go back one year and a month and a half (right before I started this blog and joined the blogging community). As most of you know, I wrote a Self-Help book for teenagers a while back and attended the Writer’s Digest Conference last January to pitch my book to notable literary agents. Something that each agent mentioned to me was the fact that I can’t become an author and publish a book if I don’t have a platform of followers. Their suggestion was join the world of social networking and become an avid blogger and tweeter. “Wow,” I thought to myself. “What could I possibly have to blog or tweet about that would hopefully be of interest to others?” This question stayed in my mind for quite some time, but I figured I’d have to give it a shot if I wanted to build up a platform with hopes of one day becoming an author. So I began posting about my writing process that involved everything pertaining to my book. Then I figured I’d throw some poetry into my blog and put in some poems that I had written a while back, and hopefully come up with ideas for new poems. And then it hit me. I also want to work on helping others as well as myself down the path towards achieving happiness. If that’s what my book is about, that’s what the majority of my blog should be about to.

A little inspiration goes a long way and I was truly hoping to help inspire any and all followers that would be joining me on the blogging path to Happiness. Little did I realize though, that within a year I would receive more followers than I could ever imagine and that my fellow bloggers would be the ones inspiring me. You have all inspired me through your blog posts, comments on my posts, pushes to continue writing, and especially through your encouragement and motivation to not only make me a better person and writer, but a better blogger as well. And to be quite honest, that is more than anything I could have ever imagined or asked for, and for that, on this one year (and almost two month) blogaversary I’d like to invite all of my fellow bloggers to comment on this post with links to your blogs. I would like for all of my followers to connect with one another and have a door opened to new blogs for you all to enjoy. So please, I ask that you help me celebrate my blogaversary by posting the link to your blogs for others to follow. I can’t think of a better way for me to celebrate my one year blogaversary than with all of you on this one year anniversary post. And with that, I’d like to make a toast to my fellow bloggers for helping me make it this far and for welcoming me with open arms into the world of blogging, and I hope together, we all have many years of blogging to come!

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Getting Back Into The Swing Of Things

It has been quite some time since I consistently posted here on WordPress. I can use the excuses of having been busy with classes, finals, the daily stressors that use up our focus and energy, or I could just pick one out of a hat, because believe me, there are plenty of excuses I’ve been holding onto.  However, in the scheme of things, I don’t really have a legitimate excuse to not have been blogging, except for the fact that I was tired. Since my return from Spain in August, I no longer had exciting adventures to share. Any and all progress made with my book had come to a standstill, so I hid from writing. I avoided it at all costs and tried to put my focus anywhere else that I could. However, in the end, for us bloggers and writers, there is no avoiding writing so here I am, facing my fear and returning to the blogging world. There is a lot to talk about since my absence so I hope you’re prepared. Not to mention, I hope I’m prepared too. And within the next few weeks, I will be working on independent publishing so that I can finally accomplish the goal of publishing my book. This is where I would insert the saying, “Here goes nothing,” but I’d like to rephrase that into a more positive one. There is no harm in trying to accomplish your goals, for regardless of how successful you think you may or not be, you’ll always be successful for having known that you did what you set out to do. So as I was saying, “Here goes something.”

Reader Appreciation Award

Reader Appreciation Award:

I was recently nominated for the Reader Appreciation Award by the amazing Rev. Whitfield. Her blog http://crustybreadblog.com/ is one that I recently came across and began following, and I am extremely glad that I did! I would highly encourage everyone to check out her blog because it has such great content that is beyond enjoyable. Thanks again for this prestigious award Rev. Whitfield! :)

Now the rules for accepting this award are as follows:

  • Add a picture of the award to your blog post.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and include a link to their blog.
  • Nominate 5-10 other Bloggers and inform those selected that they have been nominated.

The following bloggers are ones who definitely have my appreciation for either supporting my blog and/or for the great content on their blogs as well! Congratulations everyone!

Here are the nominations:

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

The Very Inspiring Blogger Award

A short while ago I was nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award, but somehow didn’t come across the comment nominating me until a few days ago. Better late than never, especially when it comes to exciting awards! I was nominated for this awesome award by Sahbina from http://sahbinahvioletflynn.wordpress.com/. Her blog is truly amazing, so I would strongly recommend checking it out!

We all have goals in life and all want to achieve nothing but the best for ourselves. Have you ever asked yourself what the goal of your blog is? I’m assuming you have since you’re successfully blogging here on WordPress, but once in a while it’s nice to think about the what the purpose of our actions is. Let me tell you why I blog. There are quite a few reasons here, so bare with me. I blog to make people happy;  I blog to entertain my followers; I blog to keep tabs on trips that I have taken and remember what I did on those trips; I blog so that other people can take these trips with me from the comfort of their own home; I blog to help people overcome obstacles they may be facing on a daily basis; I blog to remind people what is important in life and to remind each of us (myself included) of important lessons that we sometimes forget; I blog to help myself out on a daily basis; I blog to help others out on a daily basis; I blog to inspire myself; and I blog to inspire others.

If you can make a positive impact on someone’s day, then you have done something really good. If you can help improve someone’s week, then you have done something great. If you have made a difference in someone’s life for the better, then you have done something incredible. I blog to try to make a positive impact in my follower’s lives on a daily basis and as a whole, in general. If I am able to make this difference on just one person (even if it’s myself), then I will be content in knowing that I fulfilled my goal. But I don’t want to stop at just impacting one person’s day and/or life. I want to keep going. So I will keep on blogging and keep on trying to inspire. (Maybe I took this post a little too seriously, but a little catharsis never hurt anyone). But again, special thanks to Sahbina for making a positive impact on my day with the nomination of this award :)

Now for the RULES to follow when nominated for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award:

  1. Display the award logo on your blog.
  2. Link back to the person who nominated you.
  3. State 7 things about yourself.
  4. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and link to them.
  5. Notify those bloggers of the nomination and the award’s requirements.

Seven Things About Me:

  1. I am the youngest of three kids (I have an older brother and sister)
  2. We have three dogs at home (one to replace each of us when we left our house for college)
  3. I intern for a local college entertainment-oriented magazine in the Orlando area
  4. While using the bathroom in a moving train last week, I had a sudden burst of inspiration and came up with the following quote. “Life is like using the bathroom in a moving vehicle. You can come out with lots of accomplishments or lots of regrets”
  5. I use Twitter to promote my blog and at times to reach out to friends and fellow Twitter followers. I try not to use it too much to give updates on my location (minus traveling) because I don’t think people want to know when I’m eating dinner or when I’m going to the bathroom
  6. I have self-diagnosed OCD in general, but more specifically, I can’t finish brushing my teeth until I brush each “section” for a certain amount of time. Also, after a certain amount of time since previous haircuts, I have to get another haircut or else I’ll start to get jittery (It’s not easy thinking of facts about yourself, so sometimes you have to dig deep)
  7. Seven is actually my favorite number

My Nominations for the Very Inspiring Blog Award:

My whole blogging experience wouldn’t be the same without my followers as well as the blogs that I follow. There are always new blogs that catch my attention and there is no way of showing that I appreciate their work more than nominating them with a gratifying award such as this. Thank you to the following blogs for inspiring me and making a difference in my everyday life!

  1. http://2bewell.wordpress.com/
  2. http://nomadgrad.com/
  3.  http://alarnarosegray.wordpress.com/
  4.  http://readinpleasure.wordpress.com/
  5. http://noholdsbarredribataylor.wordpress.com/
  6. http://worldismycuttlefish.wordpress.com/
  7. http://travelerslounge.wordpress.com/
  8. http://pczick.wordpress.com/
  9. http://bamskitchen.com/
  10. http://justanotherwakeupcall.wordpress.com/
  11. http://sued51too.wordpress.com/
  12. http://adventuresofacarryon.com/
  13. http://hutchagoodlife.wordpress.com/
  14. http://lifebyphoto.wordpress.com/
  15. http://milenanik3.wordpress.com/