My 6 Apps For Better Blogging

I have been blogging for a little over 4 months now and it has really been a lot of fun so far.  Blogging is fun, but it can also be a lot of work. Using apps makes blogging easier and better for me. Without it, I would literally be a hot mess. Here are some of the apps I use on my iPhone and Macbook for better blogging!

WordPress

Duh, WordPress.com has an app! It’s an amazing app because it connects the community of WordPress bloggers together in a single stream. It’s also really easy to use and see all the people you follow. Think of it as Instagram, but for blogs. You can tag your posts, search for blog posts under categories or tags and even follow blogs.

You can also edit your website, write and publish blog posts all within a few swipes of your finger. It has made blogging so much easier because I do not rely on my laptop so much anymore. I can literally blog on the go! Also, a large proportion of my traffic comes from the WordPress Reader and Pinterest so I am very active on this app!

 

MinimaList

If you love a no-nonsense, simplistic to-do list then this app is perfect for you. Most reminder and to-do list apps are somewhat complicated for me. I wanted an app that I could simply write a task and strike it off when I was done. I use this app to keep track of all my blogging ideas and chores and it’s great for keeping me organized!

Photoscape- X

Unfortunately this app is only available to MacBook users. If you happen to own a MacBook, this app will take your editing game to the next level. I edit all my Instagram photos and blogging photos here and it is really simple to navigate and use! It has filters, collage makers, graphic and even a gif maker. I’m very glad I discovered this app!

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Instagram

Instagram is really popular among bloggers because it is a great way to get your blog out there. If your blog relies heavily on visuals then Instagram is the perfect app to use. But having great photos is only half the battle on Instagram right? There is a bit of skill that goes into using the ‘gram that I’m yet to hack completely!

Instagram is one of the first social media sites I joined. I have been on Instagram for 5 years now but I finally started from scratch created a separate Instagram for my blog 3 months ago. I currently have 460 followers and I actually prefer this account to my personal account because there is so much more engagement there!

Followers +

If you use Instagram for blogging, I would suggest you download this app to track who follows and unfollows you. It is helpful because a lot of  people on Instagram follow you just to unfollow you 2-3 days later. This is because they are using bots. With this app, you will know exactly who they are and act accordingly! Speaking of followers, I would also love to do an Instagram blog series once I reach 500 followers there. Would you like to see it? 

Pinterest

I started using this app recently but I didnt even know Pinterest was a form of social media till 2 months ago. I didnt know what is was used for and I also didn’t know that it was such a great way for discovering blogs and driving traffic to yours. Ever since I started implementing some simple tips, I have seen a massive increase in Pinterest traffic on my blog. I still haven’t hacked this site yet, but I will definitely share some tips when I am absolutely sure of what works!

Thank you for reading! I hope you enjoyed this post. What apps do you use for blogging? 

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How To Let Go Of Negativity On Social Media and The Blogosphere

It more difficult to stay positive on social media and the blogosphere these days when you are bombarded by negative feelings and ideas on a daily basis. I have recently seen many posts about how blogging is changing (for the worse), the Instagram algorithm sucks and bloggers are liars. Basically, the rhetoric is that blogging is all round more difficult. I have also witnessed a couple of twitter fights among people and Snapchat stories where someone is calling another person names and asking for a fight. It is all very exhausting to witness.

Regarding the blogging situation, I personally believe that blogging and it’s platforms must eventually evolve and change. There may be a few growing pains while that happens, but there is always room to thrive in any environment!

I’m a generally positive person so I always try to avoid negativity at all costs now. Be it negative thoughts like anger and envy or just negative people and posts in general. It is not always easy, but here are some of the tactics I had to adopt to let go of that negativity!

Out of sight, out of mind.

Everyone knows the best way to get over something is to cut all contact. I think the same can be applied in dealing with negativity and negative emotions. Everything I ingest on social media is done in a conscious manner now because I know how slippery that slope is. One minute you’re admiring the beautiful vacation someone took and the next minute you’re wallowing in self-pity about how shitty your own life is.

Everyone is living different lives and it is very clear that social media is not what it seems. Most people show you the best versions of themselves. When they are laughing and looking their best in beautiful places. They don’t show you their tears, fears or struggles. Everyone has bad days. The person who’s life you think is perfect may be dealing with worse problems than you. For this reason, it’s very important to not compare your life at face value to other people on social media.

I also periodically assess how the people I follow make me feel. Do I feel inspired following this person or does it bring up negative feelings on my part? If I feel negative feelings, I unfollow that person immediately. It doesn’t matter if they are a stranger I met from the internet or a close friend. Surrounding myself with people who bring positive thoughts and feelings is important for my mental health and well-being! I believe our mental health is something we should not take lightly.

Ignore, Block, Repeat.

Whenever we are attacked by someone on the internet it’s very easy to think of a witty reply and lash out to the person that hurt you. But when you take a few seconds to assess the situation you realise that the people who are attacking you are probably projecting their insecurities on you. Once you’re aware of this, it is easier to let things go.

I have thankfully not been in any major conflicts on social media for a while now but I realised that they dwindled down once I started ignoring the people that attacked me. Arguing is a massive waste of time to me. It hardly goes anywhere and you can end up saying something very hurtful. I now have the policy of if I get attacked, I will silently block the person. It preserves my dignity and cuts the conflict short.

However, some things are harder to ignore than others and in that case, I’m an advocate for standing up for yourself. But it’s important to pick and choose our battles.

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Put things in perspective.

Putting your life in perspective and really acknowledging the privileges that you have is a good practice to adopt. You may not have a perfect life on paper, but there is almost always something to be thankful for. Focusing on the good things in your life can help you let go of the negativity. Also, having a positive outlook in the midst of negativity is a very important.

I also noticed that a lot of the things I used to get riled up about on the internet are really not that important in the grand scheme of things. Once I realized this, I stopped letting things get to me or offend me and just let it go!

Take a breather

Designating time to focus on you is great. It refreshes you and may make social media seem not so negative anymore. I have at least one day of the week where I don’t open my Instagram or WordPress. This activity became important to me after my Social Media Detox. It allowed me to forget the world of ones and zeros and really be in the moment. Sometimes it’s difficult to leave because there is this irrational a fear of missing out, but I always try to remember that it will be there when I come back!

Final Tip: Follow loads of meme accounts on Instagram, you will not be disappointed. LOL

I hope you enjoyed reading this post! I would love to know what your thoughts are on negativity in general.

How do you feel about negative posts and negativity on social media?

How do you deal with that negativity?

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The Foundation Tip That Changed My Makeup Game

I always dreaded crowded or hot places because once I started sweating my makeup seemed to glide right off my face. My foundation also sat on my face instead of being an extension of my face. I spent hundreds of dollars on foundations and setting powders in the hopes that I would be able to avoid a foundation mishap outside. Setting powders helped for a bit, but it did not give me the flawless look I so desperately wanted to have. It wasn’t until I discovered this makeup tip that my makeup game took a complete 180!

The commonly accepted way of applying makeup is wearing Primer, Foundation/concealer then Powder. But what if I told you I apply my foundation as Primer, Powder then Foundation.

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I know I sound crazy,  I thought it was completely crazy at first. Why would anyone wear powder before foundation? I actually discovered this technique from a video by Wayne Goss on YouTube. Wayne Goss is a makeup artist who gives a lot of unorthodox advice about makeup which actually works. Once I started using this tip my makeup does not budge. I live in Nigeria which is basically summer 24/7 and even in this very hot weather my makeup does not budge. This technique also made my makeup appear more smooth and flawless which is a double plus!

First Step – Prime

GOSH

Moisturise your skin and apply a pump or two of primer all over your face. I use GOSH Velvet Touch Foundation Primer.  Primer is a really good makeup product that will allow your foundation look more smooth because it fills in your pores. Instead of having the foundation sit on your face, the primer will give the foundation an even base to work with. If you have dry skin, this step is very important for avoiding a cakey makeup look.

Second Step – Powder

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Using a powder brush, apply a light coat of powder all over your face. The more coverage the powder has, the better because this means you will not need to use a lot of foundation in the next step. The powder fills in the lines in your skin and allows the base for the foundation to be smooth and actually settle as opposed to gliding and sliding everywhere. I’ve been using Mac Studio Finish powder in NC 55.

Third Step – Foundation

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Because you applied powder before which has a bit of coverage, you will notice that you do not need a lot of foundation in this step. I literally only need 2-3 pumps of foundation at most. Which is great because I don’t like using a lot of foundation. I just apply a bit on a foundation brush and rub in circles all over my face till it is evenly applied! I’m using my all time favourite foundation Maybelline Fit Me Matte and Poreless Foundation.

Final Step (Optional) – Powder

If you have oily skin or you just want more coverage, lightly apply powder on your T-zone or all over your face. Do not apply too much powder here to avoid your face looking cakey!

That’s it! I have been following this makeup tip consistently for a couple of months and my makeup game has seriously stepped up a notch. I no longer carry a powder to retouch my makeup throughout the day, I have minimal shine and my face looks more flawless. It was a truly life changing tip!

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I challenge you to try this tip for a few days and see how it fares. Thank me later. Or better yet, thank the makeup guru Wayne Goss!

Have you tried this tip?

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MEGA AWARD POST: Sunshine, Leibster and The Awesome Blogger Award!

I’m literally the worst person ever to be nominated. I have a ton of nominations that are just sitting in my drafts that I never completed. I decided to do this massive award post today because I havent done one in so long. I enjoyed answering all these questions and I hope you enjoy reading it too. Lets get into it!

Sunshine Blogger Award

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RULES

  • Thank blogger(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions that the blogger asked you.
  • Nominate 11 blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the sunshine blogger award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

Thank you so much for the nomination and questions Nifemi! Check out her blog here.

What is your greatest fear?

Cockroaches. I’m deathly afraid of cockroaches!

What are your blogging achievements so far?

Reaching a 1000 followers on my blog and being contacted by Rimmel London to use one of my pictures on their website!

What keeps you going?

Seeing the support and nice comments I get from everyone that reads my blog motivates me!

Family or Friends?

Family! I love family.

How would you describe your blogging style?

I don’t have a blogging style that I can pin point. I just try to be coherent and let my personality shine through.

Who has impacted you most in blogging and how?

I haven’t been impacted by anyone, but I have definitely been inspired by Lydia Elise Millen. She’s an amazing soul and great blogger!

Have you ever think of quitting blogging?

Not at the moment no! But I worry often about how I will juggle blogging and full-time studies.

How do you calm yourself when angry?

I stay away from everyone and look at memes on my phone till I fall asleep. LOL

Any regrets ever since you started blogging?

No not at all! I’m someone who avoids having regrets. It is a completely pointless emotion because I can’t go back and change the past.

Coffee or Chocolate?

Chocolate!

Will you party or stay indoor?

BOTH. I love a good party but I also love to stay at home and chill most of the time

 

Sunshine Blogger Award 2

I was nominated by NotYourAverageGirlyGirl! Thank you so much for the award! Check out her blog here

What is the one movie that you can watch over and over and never get sick of?

Any Leonardo DiCaprio film is an instant classic.

What is your go-to Starbucks (or coffee/tea/beverage) order?

Caramel Frappuccino. I’m very basic. Lol

What is one item that you can’t live without (other than your phone)?

My computer.

What is your favorite book?

I don’t have a fave, but I love Sci-Fi and self-help books.

If you could star in any TV series, which would it be and which character would you play?

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I would be A in Pretty Little Liars or Frank Underwood in House of Cards because they’re messy, evil, petty and the villains/antagonists always have the most fun.

If you could own any animal, and the animal would always remain baby-sized, which would you choose?

A cat! I love kittens and they’re so cute with their baby screechy meows

If you could have one super power for one day only, what would it be?

Time Control. I want to experience how people lived in the past.

What was the first concert that you ever attended?

I went to the Drake “Would You Like A Tour” concert in Birmingham, UK in 2013!

What city do you wish you could live in?

NYC seems like a fun place to live in.

What is your go-to karaoke song?

Any and all Disney songs.

What is the most interesting place you’ve ever visited?

Dubai! It was so different from anywhere I’ve ever visited.

 

Awesome Blogger Award

 

Rules of This Award:

• Thank the person who nominated you & include the reason behind the award.

• Tag it under #awesomebloggeraward in the Reader.

• Answer the questions your nominator gave you.

• Nominate at least 5 awesome bloggers.

• Give your nominees 10 new questions to answer.

• Let your nominees know that they’ve been nominated!

Thank you for the nomination Sanah Sharma! Do check out her blog here 

Questions

What’s the best thing you love about where you live?

I currently live in Nigeria and one of the things I love the most about it is the hot weather! It’s summer all year-long so I never have to worry about padding up when I’m leaving the house.

If not for your current profession, what would your alternate career option be?

I’m probably going to be a research scientist but if I wasn’t doing that I’d probably be working somewhere entertainment and or beauty related.

What language do you want to learn?

French. I’m moving to Quebec soon so it is definitely a skill I would love to have. Speaking English only is so boring to me.

What’s your favorite dessert?

Ice-cream!

If you had to wear just one outfit all your life what would it be?

Probably just a button up shirt and pants. I think it is something that will remain somewhat in fashion forever. I would’ve said pyjamas but I can’t leave my house looking like a crazy person, even though it’s comfortable

What is the one place in the world you want to visit before you die?

Tokyo, Japan!

If you could be a movie character, who would you be and why?

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Not a movie character but an anime character called Gon Freecss in this show called Hunter x Hunter. He has a lot of admirable qualities like loyalty, determination, playfulness that I think is so cute. He also kicks butt and everyone underestimates him but he gets shit done. He is my anime soul mate.

What are three things you never leave home without?

Lip Balm, My iPhone and Money.

What is your favorite brand of clothing?

Zara! I own too many Zara clothes.

What is the craziest thing you’ve ever done?

I think indoor skydiving and extreme dune bashing in the desert!

 

Leibster Award

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I was nominated by Louise to do the Leibster award! Thank you very much for this award Louise!

What inspired you to begin your blog? What was your reason and what is your blog about?

I liked the idea of blogging about the things I loved so I decided to start a blog about my travel experiences…which morphed into the blog you see today. I’m very glad I started blogging!

What qualities do you like about yourself?

I’m a generally chill person who is slow to react and I like that about myself.

Are you more a city or country person?

City. I can’t stand the quiet of nature. LOL

Do you have children? If not, would you like to have children in the future & what would you name them?

I don’t! I would like to have kids eventually and I haven’t thought of names yet.

Do you wear makeup? If so what is one thing that’s essential in your makeup routine? 

Eyebrows! My makeup is not complete without it.

If you could spend a whole day with 3 celebrities who would you spend the day with?

I love extravagant celebrities so I’m going to go big with this one and say Floyd Mayweather,  Migos and Rihanna. I think I’ll probably have the most fun with these three/five.

What’s your ideal holiday? Where would you love to travel?

Answered above!

Have you got any phobias? If so what?

I’m afraid of cockroaches. Eek!

Whats an interesting fact about you that not many people know?

I’ve never given this much of a thought to be honest. Lool

What’s the craziest and most spontaneous thing you’ve ever done?

Answered something similar above!

Would you say you’re an optimist, pessimist or realist?

Optimist. I always believe everything will work out for good in the end.

My Questions 

Answer both these questions for the Awesome Blogger Award!

  1. Summer or Winter?
  2. Favorite vacation destination?
  3. One item you can’t live without?
  4. What did you want to be when you were younger?
  5. Do you like seafood?
  6. Could you go ever go vegan?
  7. Best TV show you’re watching right now?
  8. Favorite makeup product that you can’t live without?
  9. Love or Money?
  10. Would you ever go on a TV show?

I nominate you for the Awesome Blogger Award

Brooke Clark

Holilife

Dii Blogs

Chxrlotte Rose

The Unabridged Sass

Asakemi 

If you made it this far, you’re a real gem! Thank you so much for reading this award post and I hope you enjoyed it as much as I loved doing it. 

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My Not So Secret Beauty Cleanser For Flawless Skin

I am one of those odd unicorns that has skin that can be classified as  “Normal”. It is neither Dry nor Oily and it’s definitely not Combination. I can humbly say that I have been blessed by the skin gods when it comes to that aspect. But although I had it easier in this area, I was plagued by hyper pigmentation and millions of tiny zits on my forehead. They were even more pronounced when I wear foundation!

I tried so many different skin care products and spent hundreds of dollars on cleansers, toners and masks in the hopes that it would remove some of the acne I was experiencing. As I bought many different products, I began to realise that my skin responded better to products that other people considered harsh. Toners that would normally dry out peoples skin were absolutely perfect for me. Cleansers that were too strong were not even strong at all on my face. I came to the realisation that my skin needed a strong but natural product to help tame the horrendous acne I was experiencing. This lead to my discovery of a Black African soap called Dudu Osun!

Dudu Osun has been here for as long as I can remember. In secondary school, I saw girls use this soap religiously and I wondered why anyone in their right mind would use a soap that is black. Fast forward to my Uni days in Manchester, after spending a lot of money on a cleanser that that didn’t work, I decided to find an affordable alternative which led me to the back of an African Caribbean store where I discovered Dudu Osun!

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I initially did not use it on my face, but once my cleanser ran out, in a moment of desperation I used this soap. I loved it so much that I stopped using that cleanser and started using Dudu Osun. I haven’t looked back since.

Dudu Osun is made up of all natural ingredients including shea butter, honey, aloe vera, osun (Camwood), palm kernel oil, cocoa pod ash, palm bunch ash, lime juice and lemon juice. With so many lovely natural ingredients included I am not surprised it is doing wonders on my skin.

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Something that I have noticed is that Dudu Osun is a strong soap. Do not get it in your eyes. I have made that mistake a couple of times and it was not fun getting it out. It is very harsh. It’s probably the reason why it works on my skin. lol

Dudu Osun is also a pimple zapper. Once I spot a pimple and I use it, the next day it is visibly smaller. It is also a preventative measure for future acne because it has antibacterial properties. I now have virtually no acne spots on my skin and I also have minimal acne scaring! I’m assuming this is because of the lemon and lime which have natural bleaching properties.

Dudu Osun is also extremely affordable in Nigeria and abroad. In the UK, a pack of 6 costs £6. Which is £1 per soap! I am now a big believer of not spending stupendous amount of money on beauty products when you can find one just as good (or even better) in a drugstore or market.

Most skin care products are down to trial and error so even though I may be raving about this product, it may not work for you. However, since it is affordable and most people that have tried it like it, it is definitely worth a buy!

You can find Dudu Osun at most African Caribbean stores or African markets. If you’d rather not go there you can order it directly on Amazon.

I hope you enjoyed this post! This soap is really my secret weapon for flawless skin. I really don’t worry about acne anymore and it is an amazing thing to check off your list!

Thank you for reading! Have you tried Dudu Osun? What did you think of it? 

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How I Achieved My Health Goals

It’s July and we are waaay past the middle of the year now. 2017 has been a pretty good year for me so far. I got to take the trip of a lifetime to Dubai, I got admitted to McGill University for my M.Sc. and I surpassed 500 followers on this blog by a long shot. I am definitely looking forward to what the rest of this year will bring offline and online!

I think almost everyone has some sort health goal that they want to achieve. Be it removing negativity, exercising more, eating healthier or meditating more. There are so many ways you can decide to improve your health and well-being.

In the beginning of the year, I had two health resolutions that I vowed to follow come new year. These were exercising regularly and losing weight. Here is how I achieved those goals!

Exercise

I wanted to establish a regular exercise regimen because I was completely sedentary. I had exercised on and off for months but it was erratic and I would often stop for extended periods of time. I had begun to take my health more seriously and I realised that my inactivity was something that had to change. I decided that I would find an exercise I don’t hate doing and start doing that consistently for the next few months

Was I successful?

I have gone from zero exercise a week to 3 times a week. I now do a variety of strength training and cardio exercise through the course of a week. I started very small. Exercising only once a week and doing low-impact exercises. Once I felt comfortable I slowly increased the frequency and intensity of my exercises to where I am today.

I am by no means a fitness expert. I still look like a headless chicken when I exercise and some days I really, really don’t want to do it but I have noticed so much improvements since I started. My arms and bum look more defined, my resting heart rate has reduced and I can now do a couple of push ups (knee assisted). I was that girl who couldn’t muster up even one assisted push up so this was a very big deal for me!

What exercises did I do?

I used Fitness Blender videos on YouTube. Fitness Blender was founded by a couple called Dan and Kelli who make free exercise videos for all levels and ages. They have over 500 videos on their channel so there is always something for you.

The exercise intensity ranges from 1-5. I started initially at a level 1 and 2 but I am currently doing level 2 to 4. Level 5 is pretty extreme for me so I don’t see myself doing that anytime soon.

Losing Weight

My second goal was to lose weight. Which is the probably most basic goal ever lol. I have been overweight for the majority of my life. It’s not the most noticeable thing in the world because I carry my weight pretty well and I have never had any health issues. (Seriously, the last time I was sick was in elementary school). However, my weight had been a source of a most of my self-esteem issues when I was a teenager! As I got older, I became more at peace with my body and began to like it. But as I became more health conscious, I decided to reach a normal weight because I wanted to be healthier after it finally sunk in my head that I was increasing my risk of developing chronic diseases if I do not lose weight!

I was about 10 kg or 20 pounds overweight. So I had a lot of weight to lose before I reached the upper limit of a healthy weight.

Was I successful?

I have lost 11 pounds or 5 kg so far! I am now 10 pounds away from a normal BMI and this is a very peculiar experience for me. I have lost weight by counting my calories and incorporating healthier/filling meals into my diet. The calorie counting app I use is myFitnessPal and it has a large database of food so it is easy to check any food I eat and track it. I weigh every single thing I eat (including condiments) using a scale and weigh myself daily to get a weekly average of my weight. My weight fluctuates a lot daily so it is important to me to get an average so I do not get hung up on a single number I see on the scale!

The biggest difficulty I’ve experienced is adapting to a reduced calorie diet since I was used to eating 2000+ daily. Going from 1800-2000 calories a day to 1300-1500 did not go well for a few weeks. I realised that I had to get creative with the type of food I eat if I was going to survive.

I have incorporated complex carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and oatmeal, increased my vegetable intake and incorporated better fats like peanut butter and cashews. Nearly don’t eat enough protein so that is something I need to work on. Although my diet is not perfect, it is improving and that is all I am aiming for right now. Perfect is the enemy of good!

However, I am currently struggling because my mother keeps buying snacks in the house. Someone send help. Please. Lol

Weight loss communities have also kept me motivated when I felt myself slipping. The r/loseit community of Reddit has helped tremendously with this. I’m an avid Redditor and lurker so finding this community was amazing. I can not begin to explain how motivating the community has been to me. They are an amazing bunch of people!

 


 

Thanks for reading this post! I hope some of the tips I have shared may help you with kickstarting your helath goals. I am happy I have acheieved some of my goals this year. I hope I can continue losing weight and getting healthier for the remainder of the year. It hasn’t been always the easiest thing to stop bad habits, but it is well worth it!

What are your health goals?

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The 1000 Followers Milestone!

Excuse me? OMG, me? What? A thousand people are following my blog?

I had a goal to reach 500 followers by the end of the year and this has completely exceeded my expectations!

I would like to sincerely thank you all for subscribing to my blog, continuously interacting with me and showing support. It is this continuous support that keeps me going! I don’t look at you all my people who are following me, I see you as a community of my friends.

This is such an amazing milestone to reach and it now feels weird looking at my follower count because I remember when I had 20 people following me. That was such an exciting time for me and now that I have reached 1000 followers, this is a similar, exhilarating feeling!

So what’s next? I can’t wait to see where this blogging journey takes me and see how I evolve as I continue doing this. I’m looking forward to working with different brands and websites! I currently live in Nigeria so getting some opportunities have been a bit of a challenge. However, I may be moving soon so that would definitely open more opportunities for me! Yay!

I also set a goal for myself that if I ever hit a 1000 followers on my blog I would get a custom domain. I would love more creative freedom on my blog but I don’t know if I should pay for WordPress Premium or move to WordPress.org yet. I’ll probably start with the paid versions of WordPress.com before I move to a self hosted website. I’m too lazy for all the technical stuff and I really love the ease of the community here.

I also started a new Instagram page for my blog a month ago. Despite the messy algorithm, I currently have 360 lovely followers there so it is going pretty well all things considered. So go over there and give me a follow!

Also trying to get into Pinterest too, I don’t know how to use that much so we’ll see how this goes!

Once again, thank you so very much!

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