Change is a comin’!

Waking up to another sunshine-filled, beautiful Missouri afternoon sure does put my day to starting off on the right foot. Unfortunately, I will have to be back at work in a few short hours but I plan to soak up some vitamin D in the meantime.

Well, I’ve got some exciting news (for me, anyway. I’m sure it’s no big deal to you). Tomorrow marks my 1 month anniversary as a blogger. Just 1 month ago, I was laying in bed wide awake, listening to Robby snore no less, brainstorming ideas on a pasttime that I could have. Something just for me. Not for the wife. Not for the mommy. Not for the nurse. Something just for me. Pan. That’s where this whole journey began.

Since that night, I’ve been learning. I’ve spent time (occasionally stolen time from those that shall remain nameless….) learning. I’ve scourged through travel blog after travel blog. Asking myself, “What makes this blog something people return to?”. Of course you’ll have no loyal readers if you bring junk to the table. My new inspiration has been found in a travel blog so rightly named, The Everywhereist. Geraldine chronicles her travels around the country (and the world! Super, super lucky gal!). Several years ago, she got a wonderful opportunity to join her husband while he traveled on work assignments, after she was laid off from her job. Her husband encouraged her to start a travel blog and just last year (only 2 or 3 years after beginning), she was named one of Times Magazine’s Top Travel Blogs of 2011. How awesome is that!

What Geraldine gives us is, of course, travel reviews but on top she gives so much more. Providing detailed accounts of her where-tos, she presents her story with an uncanny wit and charm that only I could wish to have. If you want to check it out, (and even though I probably shouldn’t be promoting another travel blogger, I just can’t help myself. It’s so darn good!) visit her at everywhereist.com.

The most important thing that I have learned are these 2 things: 1) your readers want to know you, want to know about you and 2) it is okay to occasionally write about something other than travel. I’ve been depriving myself from talking about anything besides travel and thereby missing the whole point to this blogging stuff. A blog is about you. That’s the point. People follow you because they come to know you, your loved ones, your quirks, and your strengths. Here all along, I’ve been talking about nothing but travel (even when there’s so much more I want to say) and I’ve kept things very unpersonal (please don’t take offense. You just never know what freaks are out there.).

So, change is a comin’. I’m switchin’ things up and new things will be done. I’ve never been one to be scared of the new. I’ve got goals in mind and slowly I will put them in play. My first goal was to update the website to something much fancier (and esthetically pleasing to the eyes) at month one. I’ve changed that. I think I’ll go another 2 months and see where we sit then. I know myself too well. I’m flightly. I get a lot of big ideas and occasionally (okay a lot. Get off my back already), they fizzle before they even get started. This, I know. I have lived with me for 29 years. So, I’m giving myself more time. Blogging is apparently a slow process. I’m a patient person.

On top of that, I’m going to let you in. My name is Amanda but you can call me Pan. I am a new Mommy to the sweetest baby girl in the whole wide world, Olivia. Robby is my wonderful hubby and we have the cutest puppy dog, Chiyo. That is my family. They are my heart and soul (and at times cause for some serious stress and indigestion).

This is our super terrible Christmas picture. Don’t judge based on what you see above. It was not a good afternoon for pictures, even though I forced the issue.

So, I hope you continue reading and traveling with me. Stay tuned for more changes. Hopefully all good ones! The Gravel-Roadin’ Guru, Pan