Hello world 👋 Welcome to my new site-portfolio-blog; my little corner on the world wide web!
I’m ashamed to say that for the last 3 years, my website was hiding away behind a under construction banner. “I’m hoping I’ll get to it this month!”, I would say without penciling it into the calendar. 😅
Looking back, I can see where a few of the blocks came from. Like the pressure of feeling like I needed to create something visually stunning. Of course I had to make use of all the bells & whistles my blog theme came with! I also felt overwhelmed with managing multiple sites, one for each of my interests. Of course they all needed to have their own vibe and content! But I wasn’t happy with any of my sites.
If I put up a WIP banner, at least it felt like I was committing to working on them. But of course I didn’t – I didn’t make it a priority. It was preventing me from writing posts like my Monthly Reviews. It was hard to share my recent art with people. I hated feeling like I have to be on different social media platforms because I didn’t have a central place to call home.
All of this could be easily fixed if I just had a dang site haha.
As much as I’d love to say at the start of April I announced, “THIS MONTH I WILL REDO MY WEBSITE! 😤”, a site revamp was so far down on my to do list that it would’ve sat collecting digital dust for another year. Nope, it was an email that jumpstarted an impromptu quest to finally work on my site. My old hosting service reminded me that my 3 year plan renewal payment was due for $322 – almost twice the cost of my initial plan. There was no time to weep over the realization that I spent $178 to host a under construction sign. I was already deep into the research rabbit hole of hosting services and blogging platforms.
First I had to decide what to do for a blog – do I stay with self hosted WordPress or jump to something like Ghost? WP gets flack for being “heavy” but after lots of consideration I realized its simple to use, it does the job – no need to complicate things. There are so many resources available online that if I had any issues, I could get them quickly resolved. Plus, I had a blog theme I paid for in 2019 and did not want to add to the guilt of paying for something I didn’t use 😂
For hosting, Reddit had highly recommended UK based Krystal (Affiliate Link). Besides being fast and reliable, I liked that they are a green company: Krystal’s servers are powered by renewable energy and they are on an epic quest to plant 1 billion trees 🌲. Since they avoid the cheap introductory price tactic, there’s no ridiculous price increase at renewal time to be shocked at. I decided to go with their Triennially Amethyst plan and paid £166/$208 with a coupon. The cost was a bit more than my old hosting service, though I feel it was well worth it as they have so far exceeded my expectations!
While Krystal offers free hosting migration, I stubbornly decided to do it myself.. then ran into some issues. After an hour of googling for answers, which only left me more confused, I finally reached out to Krystal for help. Tech support staff resolved 3 issues during a 15 minute chat conversation, woo, thanks Matthew! My last hosting provider took two different reps and an hour to resolve one issue 🙃
I would recommend doing your research to see which service best fit your needs as everyone’s needs & budget is different but if you decide to check out Krystal, please consider signing up via my Krystal Affiliate Link! Use the code “elygriff” for £10 off your order and I get some compensation too which helps support me ❤
With all that out of the way, I could finally focus on the most daunting task – actually creating the website. I had several sites for my photography, crafts, and Twitch content.. not including social media profiles 🙄. I realized having everything spread out made it near impossible for me to stay on top of it all. When I was heavily focused on my photography business, it made sense to have everything separated but now it no longer works for me in this phase of my life. I wanted one place to share my writing and creative work that wasn’t a social media platform.
So that’s exactly what I did! Everything has moved to one site with content separated by pages. Overall, I’m pretty happy with how it all turned out! 🎉
I gave myself a week deadline to get something resembling a site up to avoid the dreaded WIP banner for another 3 years. Because of this, there are some pages that need some attention and working on those will be my goal for this month.
Thank you so much for reading the first post to celebrate, see ya on the next post!