You asked, I answer…
What made you decide to start blogging?
I’ve actually been blogging off and on since I was 16. I had an old Angelfire.com blog where I learned HTML basics (who knew it would come in so handy now!). I also blogged a bit through university and had my own domain back then but let it go when the thought of one person who used to be close to me in my life might start snooping on me. When I was nearing the end of my pregnancy with Braden in October 2009 I decided to start blogging again on this Nurse Loves Farmer blog to journal the end of my pregnancy and life with a newborn so my friends and family could easily keep in touch, especially for those without Facebook accounts. My dear friend Marie blogged in our online pregnancy group in 2009 so she inspired me to start up again.
Before you started, did you (out do you) ever worry about your kids’ safety/privacy, putting everything out there? I wonder this about all mom bloggers. What does your husband think about this issue?
Other than online “identity theft” of my kids, no I do not worry. Unfortunately a lot of bloggers have found pictures of their children around the internet being claimed as someone else’s, but I’ve watermarked all of my photos for over a year now in hopes of preventing this. As for real life safety & privacy, I have the location services on my phone turned off, I only have a PO box address, I have never stated exactly what town I live near, just the general area…I feel that what I blog about and the way I expose my children online is a safe way to do so. I had to ask my husband what he thought so he could answer the 2nd part of this question as I’ve never really asked him and he’s never said anything, he’s very supportive of my blog. He said at first when I started blogging, even before we had kids, he was worried…but has also recognized the precautions I’ve taken. I never give out too many specific details on my blog.
The food that Americans call “Canadian bacon”, do you just call it bacon? No joke, we’ve had some in our fridge lately and I’ve been meaning to ask you that.
Haha! I love this question. Bacon is bacon, but “Canadian” bacon is a back bacon, more like a thick, round slice of ham. I don’t eat Canadian bacon………I just eat bacon bacon. 🙂
What is your best tip for growing readership?
My biggest tip is to blog consistently. If you’re not writing….your readers don’t have anything to read, so why keep coming back? Another would be to interact with your readers on your social media feeds and by answering comments/emails, reading lots of other blogs similar to yours and commenting on them as well. If they like what they’re reading….they’ll keep coming back.
How do you manage to keep up this amazing blog AND chase after 2 children? You amaze me!
Aww shucks, thanks! I’m a very organized person, so I just plan ahead as much as I can. I blog in the mornings when Ethan naps and a bit in the afternoon if I don’t have much else going on and Ethan is having a good nap. I have a good set of monthly posts which helps me keep my content up – my sponsored posts with Sears, Old El Paso, etc. and then my monthly features like Catch the Moment and 10 on 10. I also loved having The Breastfast Club going consistently as it was a post every week done for me! As for the kids? Braden plays very well independently and lets me get my blogging done, housework, cooking – you name it. Ethan? He’s still pretty lazy so I don’t have to chase him….yet!
Your house and all of the surrounding property look amazing, such a beautiful setting. Do you ever get lonely in a remote setting?
Thank you, I absolutely love where we live. I’ve always said to my husband that if he farmed in a really remote area…I don’t know if I could do it – but such isn’t the case at all! We live 1 hour away from Calgary, so I don’t consider it remote. Take me 2 or 3 hours away from a major city center? Different story! We have a little grocery store in town (5 minute drive) and 25 minutes away is a small city where I do all my grocery shopping, where I work as a nurse, and can do most of our errands. The lonely part? I’m so blessed to have all of my husband’s family so close. His youngest sister Laura is my best friend. Our boys are very close in age, we see each other all the time, and I’m so thankful for that. Usually 2 or 3 times a year I get very “homesick” for Edmonton, where I grew up, because I really miss my friends there…especially because they all have kids my kids age too!
Do you plan to return to your R. N. job in emergency after October? Will you remain on casual or go part time?
Reluctantly…yes. I have blogged earlier on my hesitation to go back to work. I feel a calling to be at home and pour myself into my home, my children, and the farm…but now is not the time. I am going back into my casual position, so I really won’t be working that much anyway. I know I’ll love it when I go back, but I’ve already been off for over a year and I’m so comfortable at home. I think I’d like to just work night shifts on the weekend…if I even have a choice!
Your photographs are gorgeous! What are some of your best photography tips and tricks?
Firstly – thank you! It’s a passion of mine and I’m completely self-taught by experimentation and lots of tutorials I’ve read online, including blogs. I’ve blogged before about how much I’ve learned from The Pioneer Woman and my tips for photographing your children. I use Photoshop Elements (6) for all my editing and I have learned a TON about that by just searching YouTube for tutorials and I also bought some Florabella actions that I’m just in love with. My tips are to learn your camera, stop shooting on auto, and practice, practice, practice!
Your house is amazing, I LOVE it, but I wonder if you ever miss out on having neighbors, or if you have a bad storm how long does it take you to get out of your house with so much property to plow?
Thank you, we sure love our house too. When I see people posting and blogging pictures of block parties and just running over next door, kids playing street hockey…yes I wish/miss the fact that we’ll never have next door neighbors…BUT I also LOVE the fact that we don’t have next-door neighbors! The good far outweigh the bad. Our closest neighbor is 1/2 mile south of us and my in-laws on the farm are 1 mile east. I don’t have to worry about my kids & traffic or making too much noice, etc. As for a storm, so far we’ve never been snowed in, or if we do get a really bad dump our neighbors to the south will come up and plow our road/drive way for us with their tractor. If snow has been accumulating for awhile, Jay will just drive our tractor over from the farm and clear out our yard.
What is the area of the farm? What are the products? I am also a farmer from France, father of a little girl (and waiting 2 boys for November!). My wife is also a nurse!
I love to ‘meet’ people from around the world, nurses and farmers make very good couples! We farm just under 5000 acres and we only plant varieties of wheat and canola. We used to plant barley a few years back and my husband says he might try some fava beans next year!
How would a Mom blogger start without being overwhelmed by your stature and what was your process in getting to the endpoint of this terrific user interface?
Oh boy, I don’t know how much stature I hold in this huge ‘mom blogger’ world, but thank you kindly. Anyone can start up a blog. It’s free, it’s a fun hobby, and you can go anywhere you want with it, depending on how much you work at it and, quite honestly, a lot of luck! As for the interface, I’ve worked a lot on this blog since October 2009 and have had various designs etc. IROCKSOWHAT designed by logo for me and I absolutely love it…not quite sure if I’ll ever change it! I’m a font junkie and found my title font on www.dafont.com and just kept the blues & green color scheme and played in Photoshop with the rest of my design elements. My friend Jac transferred my blog from Blogger to WordPress at the beginning of the year and has helped me tweak my layout and I’m slowly learning some CSS to change little things on my blog. It’s taken a long time, but I’m very happy with how my blog looks now, it feels like a home!
Thank you so much for your questions! If you have anymore, just leave them in the comments here and I’ll answer them!