Awesome with Alison

Be Happy Action/Gratitude.

Awesome! with Alison Podcast. 

Awesome! with Alison Podcast. 

Yeah, I am freaking Grateful!  Over the past month, I have been listening to a lot of Awesome with Alison Podcast's. Usually on my daily bus commute to work or in the evenings while I am trying to chillax. Alison (The Alison Show) and her husband Eric's (Pleasant Pictures Studios) weekly saucy segments and tantalizing topic's have definitely helped me put a much needed pep in my self step again. Ha, it sounds like I am describing a cooking show?!? But, my  favorites podcasts, Ep. 23: WHAT IS a gratitude practice?! And how can it change your life?! We’ll tell you!  and it's follow-up, Ep. 24: I’M FREAKING GRATEFUL: A gratitude practice to help you love your life! do "cook" up some good old helpings of Motivation. And I am not kidding people... it definitely has pushed my own gratuitous nature to new heights. Some Big life-changing shifts and that is why I am sharing it with you!

I have always considered myself a pretty grateful person and try to see life and its daily challenges with a positive twist.  Especially this year with my heart surgery in April. My gratitude meter has been on overdrive and I really wanted to find better ways of putting all this new Gratitude to action. Then came along Alison's Episode 8 podcast, reflecting on her recent weight loss and and a little introduction into how gratitude played a big part of her own transformation. So, when Episodes 23 and 24 came along sharing more Gratitude Attitude.  I knew I needed to get in gear. 

Morning Pages Transformed. First it began with reworking my 20 plus year old  daily routine of Morning Pages  (writing 3 long hand pages of whatever comes to mind) to a One Page Gratitude Practice instead. Why? The Artist Way Morning Pages have served me very well or the years. Taking the mind chatter that has discouraged my creativity and turned it into positive thoughts. But, for the last few years I have found it becoming more of a hum drum habit with little creative results. And obviously since doing morning pages since my Early 20's and now being 42. My creative needs have changed. I know longer need to keep my inner creative critic in check. I am actually pretty confident in this area now:) But, don't get me wrong this always be a creative tool I will hold dear and suggest to anyone. 

Then after using Alison's gratitude practice for a few weeks, which simply consists  of naming and honoring your gratitude while being physically active. I decided then to take it a step further by creating my own twist. I began experimenting with writing one long hand page of gratitude with my Morning coffee. 

A Gratitude Page. I first begin with a clean page and a quick Hello to God. Next I begin each sentence with I am grateful...

 I am grateful for my coffee. I am grateful for a good night sleep. I am grateful for falling at work last Friday to remind myself to slow down and take care of my health first. I am grateful for my new blog and how it has refreshed my love for this hobby. I am grateful for my love of design and how it keeps me growing creatively. I am grateful for *** not responding back to me and the reminder that I need to invest in people, who invest in me. I grateful for being alone right now in life, so I can relearn to be my own friend and advocate. I am grateful for September and all it's seasonal inspiration. I am grateful for a clean house and a fridge full of groceries. I am grateful for podcasts to fall asleep too. I am grateful for my job that allows moments like this. I am grateful for my bus rides and the quiet reflection it creates. I am grateful for my family. I am grateful for love. 

Above was a little sample of my own, so can get idea how easy it is.  I can't begin to say how much I have learned and shifted personally in the last week or so  from doing this everyday. I have reworked what normally,  like a recent fall at work would be considered negative to positive affirmation. Remembering that everything does happen for a reason. I also love celebrating the everyday things that I usually would totally take for-granted and even turning my loneliness into a gift. 

One aspect of this Gratitude page practice I didn't share above is how amazing it is to also be grateful for goals and personal projects as if they have already been done and met. I believe if we name, claim and show gratitude for things we want to see in our lives. It opens us up to their possibility.     

Happy Action Challenge: Now it is your turn:) I would highly suggest you visit the above Awesome with Alison podcast links and listen up! Then create your own unique gratitude practice or share with me how Gratitude is already a part of your life and remember:

"Be Happy where you are, and use that energy to Create something Amazing" -Brooke Castillo

Love, C.

 

 

Ooh La La! Welcome!

Image: maddy nye for DesignLoveFest/Dress Your Tech 201

Image: maddy nye for DesignLoveFest/Dress Your Tech 201

Hey! Hey! Hello! Welcome to the New StoryboardC.! I am so glad you came by to check it out! Can you tell I am excited?!? So, many exclamation points right? This Blog Redesign has been in the planning/daydreaming stage for nearly 3 years now and while over the summer celebrating 10 years of blogging (wow time flies). I decided to get off the sidelines and make it finally happen. I definitely had  some Mega Motivation pushing me... a little Open Heart Surgery action (Please know I am not taking it lightly, I am just having a hard time still grasping the enormity of it all) and binge listening to THE AWESOME WITH ALISON podcast (SOOO worth a listen if you get a chance or YOU seriously need to Make a Chance!) on my public transit commutes to work. Now I am DONE and sharing the fruits of my design labor with you. This will be a wordy post, but maybe  just maybe it might help you with your own new Blog Design adventures.  If you have any questions or even need a little help let me know in the comment section below or my Contact Page. I would love to hear from you either way:)

Now let's get this redesign party started! First things first...

Platforms Baby. And I am not talking about Shoes here. My first goal was changing Blogging Platforms. I have been with Typepad since the dawn of blogging time. Back in the day (2007) it was where Everyone, who was Anyone in the blogging Scrapbooking niche was (yes, I scrapbooked and still do:).  I liked Typepad and I even paid for it, but never was in love with it. So, over the years, I tried every blogging format known to crafty woman or man.  Blogger, WordPress, Virb, Tumblr and even Squarespace back in 2013.  But, I always went back to Typepad... I was comfortable there and I learned to work around it's limitations. But, eventually I found it outdated for my needs and seeing how the blogging world was evolving into beautiful seamless sites of near perfection. I wanted that for myself, but without spending my time deciphering Custom CSS or spending oodles of money to hire someone to design my ideal on-line blog home. Plus, I knew I was more than capable of doing the design work myself. But, I still craved a easy transfer of sites and after doing a whole heck of research this past year. I decided I needed to be on Squarespace again.  I still hymned and hawed. But, Last November I made a small move towards this change by investing in my own domain name through Squarespace, something that has been on my blogging bucket list forever. When I first began blogging I had know idea about the power of Branding yourself and picked the most obvious, yet not ideal choice: my name. Whoa, it was a long one with my added ex-husbands last name! Obviously at the time I had know idea how much this hobby would grow for me and would lead me creatively. ACTION SIDE NOTE: to any new bloggers out there reading this... Take time to choose your name and really wear it on with your blogging goals before committing. Now, I am officially www.storyboardc.com and feel so good about it. 

So,Why Squarespace? I just love how inclusive it is, One Stop Shop for your domain name and no bothersome outside hosting.  I also love how design friendly it is and  Squarespace's use of content blocks for customizing your individual pages and even in blog posts is so easy.  It might sound confusing to you if you are not familiar, but once you dig into Squarespace you will know what I am talking about and their support forum is fantastic. I also stumbled last year upon amazing on-line resource Elle & Co. (Seriously, Lauren the creator  gets my Numero Uno shout out for her 'Sharing is Caring' attitude and Don't worry I will link to her useful Squarespace info below). 

Honestly I could do a whole post on the merits of Squarespace and probably will in the near future. But, for now I want to focus on what went into the new features here on StoryboardC. 

What ABOUT the FAQ's Ma'am?  My old Typepad blog did have these link options in the Navigation Bar, but I was never crazy about the limited amount of Fonts and the outdated style available. For years my contact and about links resided in my sidebar, but I always wanted a more cleaner and user-friendly format. Here at Squarespace the ease of adding pages and content is crazy awesome.  Don't get me wrong you need to have some design willingness and time. But, once you pick a Blog friendly template out of their oodles of choices (My personal favorite is Hayden,    which I use because I really fell in love with the idea/challenge of customizing it differently to Elle&Co.'s version). Customizing is truly at your fingertips and the Squarespace Help Support/forum is wonderful. My only advice is to have patience and focus. Make a list of Pages you want and take your time before getting started. 

My About Page was one of their easy drop box template options. All I needed was a new photo and introduction. I did take my time with writing my introduction. Informal and real. One of the many things I have learned over the years of Blogging is being yourself. I know that is said a lot in the blogging world... but truth it is! Do you:) ACTION SIDE NOTE: I do suggest checking out some of your favorite blogs for inspiration and Pinterest has tons of ideas as well. But, again remember to take your time and be yourself. 

My FAQ page was fun to write up. I brainstormed all the questions I have gotten over the years about blogging and other subjects that have interested my readers.  Then I took the time really answering them and making sure they contained valuable/ usable information.  ACTION SIDE NOTE: Even if your readership is small. I still like to include a FAQ page. It is another way that current and future readers get to know you. If you don't know what to write about or new to blogging, I suggest doing a brainstorm of what you think others might want to know about you you or services you have to offer if you are a business. 

I Got Mail and Favicon's are Cool. These were two things that have been on my blogging bucket list forever and I am thrilled that I finally made them happen. The mail was so easy to sign up for and Squarespace had a direct link to G-Suite (Pro version of Gmail, where you can use your domain name). So, now I have my own email: cynthia@storyboardc.com and it is directly linked to my new contact page. How cool and legit am I:) I also did this for future growth, if I want to add contributors to my blog someday, they too will have their own email:) 

So, now what the heck is a Favicon? Don't feel bad if you don't know either and if you do know, Go on with your bad self! I always saw on people's polished blogs that little personalized logo on a open tab. I really wanted one myself and never knew what they were called until Elle & Co. came into my on-line life. I was bound and determined to have one. Even designed it myself. What fun I had playing with styles for this tiny little Icon. So, make sure to read this on a regular computer sometime to check out my Favicon:)  Little details do feel good. 

What's next on the design Agenda? I have been plugging away at a lot of new blog content and have about 10 posts ready for you! I am also trying to figure out how to move my old blog archives over here from Typepad. I truly hope it will not be a manual transition. *Update: I contacted Squarespace and unfortunately at this time Manual import of Posts is only available. Total Bummer, but archives are slowly in the works.  

My last order of business in this Welcome post is telling you that I had originally allotted a month for this transfer of blogging power:) And it only took three days. So, if you are on the fence yourself. It is totally doable. Please know I am here for you. If I don't have the answers, I will try to find them.

Thank you again for being my blog friend and reading me over the past ten years! I am so excited for what is to come here at StoryboardC. going forward and am glad you are along for the ride!

Love, C. 

Ooh La La Blog Notes Below (Click on Image for further Information):