Willowbottom Turns one!

I can’t believe I started this blog a year ago!

It’s been a great journey and I’ve met so many amazing people along the way.

If you’re new here, I want to extend a warm welcome and thank you for stopping by.

If you’ve been following me for a while, I want to thank you for sticking with me on this journey!

I thought today would be a great opportunity to tell you a little bit about how this blog came to be. Willowbottom’s origin story if you will. So here goes:

Why I started blogging

6 years ago, my sister-in-law who is a fellow blogger, encouraged me to start a blog. I had always wanted to, but I didn’t think I had anything to offer and I was extremely shy and not very confident, so I hesitated.

A few months later in 2013 I decided to start a blog based on parrots since I had just gotten Hilo (my black-capped conure) and at that time there weren’t many sites about living naturally with parrots, so I gave it a go. Unfortunately, I didn’t stick with it as I should have. A year after starting, I turned it into an informational website rather than a blog.

Having Hilo really opened our eyes to proper nutrition and eating real foods, which of course I wanted to share with others, but at the time it didn’t dawn on me that I could create a blog about that!

Designing my first site was a great learning experience and I went on to create a website for a local company and also a site for the company I currently work for. – Although creating sites is not my full-time job, it’s something that I enjoy doing.

In 2017 my husband and I started a small online shop, where we sell high-quality outdoor gear. We highlight the importance of getting outdoors and try to encourage ones to find nature near them.

Our shop with its overlaying mission really got my blood pumping and I realized it was time to start a blog about getting back to nature.

I enjoy helping people and I love nature and living naturally so a blog just made sense. A year later Willowbottom was born.

Why the name Willowbottom?

It has a very personal meaning. We call my Husband’s childhood homestead Willowbottom because the property had many willow trees on it.

That property really gave me the homesteading experience. We have a lot of great memories there, so as a tribute to that property and our memories old and new, I decided to name my blog after it.

His parents still live there, and although most of the willow trees are gone now, it will always be Willowbottom to us.

So why the bee in my logo?

Living naturally has really given me an appreciation for the tiny creatures who work hard to keep our earth healthy. Without bees, we wouldn’t be able to survive. So I have a bee in my logo as a reminder of how important those beautiful creatures are and not to give up on the planet or the amazing results that happen when like-minded humans work together.

It’s hard to swim upstream in this selfish world. For so long doing things naturally and being selfless for the earth’s well-being hasn’t been on people’s minds. Fortunately, it feels like the tide is changing and people are starting to realize that our decisions make an impact on our planet.

It just so happens that this week is National Pollinator Week! Go bees! ๐Ÿ™‚

Blogging regrets and What I’ve learned

I only have one regret. Not starting sooner!

It hasn’t been easy. I also work a full-time job, while running my online shop and this blog, along with household responsibilities, but it’s been very fulfilling and has helped me grow as a person.

I’m an introvert by nature and unless I know you, talking freely is very difficult for me. I get anxious and overall I’m a mess inside. “What if I say the wrong thing?”, “What if I’m boring?”, “Do I really have anything beneficial to offer?” The struggle is real.

Blogging has really helped me become more confident. I’m starting to feel more comfortable talking to people online and face-to-face. Although some days are better than others ๐Ÿ™‚

I’ve learned that blogging is not easy! Creating a website is one thing, managing a blog is a whole different story. It’s hard to get your name out there and getting people to engage with your posts is a new level of difficulty that I didn’t expect. Creating new content every week is exciting, but it’s not always simple. Brain fog and writer’s block are real!

This past year has been a great learning experience. Though it’s not huge and still needs improvement, and I am forever learning, my little blog has blossomed into something I’m very proud of.

It’s such a great feeling to see something that you made grow and become something that can help others.

If you have something you’re passionate about and want to share, I highly recommend starting a blog!

Thank you for visiting and being part of this journey! I’m looking forward to many more years!

Whitney Stokes

Whitney is a naturalist who started Willowbottom.com in 2018 to encourage natural and sustainable living.

This Post Has 6 Comments

  1. Dipankar

    Such a nice, real words I have just found in this post. So itโ€™s probably the midnight I found your blog and once Iโ€™ve started reading Iโ€™ve found how engaging your words are into this blog. Really love to read your blog๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Shar F

    Thank you for sharing. My blog is six months old and I am still finding my groove. I am an introvert sometimes thrown in group leader situations and it is heart stopping. My self development is soaring because of my driving need to help people. Hearing about your journey and thoughts is inspiring.

  3. Herah

    Congrats on your one year anniversary! ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Whitney


  4. Michele

    Happy anniversary! Great story from beginning to end, I loved it!

    1. Whitney

      Thank you so much!

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