This is a big moment for me, you guys. Really big. I’ve been working on re-launching my blog for the past few months, and the day is finally here! I am SO excited to hit publish on the first blog post under my site’s new name, The Olive Branch.
How I Got Here
I started this blog about almost two years ago when I left for New Zealand. I thought it’d be fun to keep my family and friends updated about my travels across Oceania and the South Pacific. I honestly didn’t even have high hopes that I’d be very good at maintaining that, but here we are, nearly two years later, and I am more resolved than ever to continue blogging on a regular basis.
After I started publishing to my blog (then called maggieblogstheworld), I began receiving Facebook messages from friends I hadn’t spoken to in years, telling me how much they loved reading my blog and hearing my insights about life and relationships. I started getting more attention from WordPress bloggers, a community of people I’ve really come to appreciate over the past year or so. I don’t know where my blogging will take me, but it started a journey toward full-time freelancing and writing.
With freelancing full-time comes a need to publish, so I started publishing more and more content to Medium as well as other publications like Elephant Journal and Care2. I started getting clients. I’m still working on building my business, but I’m finally getting to the point where I can call myself a full-time writer and blogger – and I could not possibly be more excited about it.
If you’ve been following maggieblogstheworld for a while, you probably won’t notice much of a difference in terms of content or subject matter. I’ll still be writing about my travels, my thoughts on relationships and personal growth, and my take on health and nutrition. I hope to expand that subject matter into other healthy lifestyle topics (mainly yoga, healthy recipes, weekly meal plans, and fitness ideas). I’m going to continue posting twice a week for now, though I may scale that up in the future.
You’ll also notice that, in addition to a new name, my sight has a totally different design – and new photos. I LOVE my blog photos, which were taken by Samantha Thiessen (a really cool and talented gal who also did the photos for my friend Katie’s new podcast). My site design also has some new features, including a Follow button over on the right sidebar (you know you wanna press it…). Please follow my blog via email, social media, etc., and share my posts with your friends and family!
You’ll also see that categories for my posts have been moved up to the top menu bar. Now, it’ll be easier to find the subject matter you’re interested in reading about. Of course, all my most recent posts will be displayed in chronological order on my home page.
Why “The Olive Branch”?
Check out my new About page to learn about the origins of my blog’s name. In addition to being a lovely signifier of peace, yoga and travel, the olive branch has a deeper personal meaning to me. I have always loved the name Olive, and I’ve often thought about ways I could use it in my life. Naming a child or a pet Olive definitely came to mind, but it doesn’t seem likely that I’m going to have any children or pets in the near future.
I decided that since Olive is unlikely to be a name for my human or fur baby, it would be the name of my other baby: my business. It’s a name that I’d love to use if I open my own yoga studio one day. And my long-term plans for this blog include other avenues in which I might use it (very secretive, I know).
Who knows if this blog will continue to touch people’s hearts and minds? Who knows if my audience will grow? I certainly don’t. But I’m going to do my best to keep writing inspirational and educational content for those who currently love my work, and I’m going to keep blogging in order to support my freelance business in the process. If nothing else, this site will be a demonstration of my writing chops for potential clients and business partners.
I’ve been blogging on and off for the past six or seven years, and I’ve had many different sites within that time frame. First, there was AudioVino, a blog my ex and I started in which we reviewed wine and music. It didn’t take off, but we created a lot of awesome memories (and discovered some great music and wine!) while we were actively writing it together. Then, there was Life to the Fullest, a documentation of my travels across Europe in the summer of my 21st year. Next up was Life As a Holiday, a travel-close-to-home blog that focused on documenting the way you could live every day as if you were on vacation, able to learn and try new things. And of course, there’s the now-retired and renamed maggieblogstheworld.
Though none of these survived after the fourth or fifth month (with the exception of maggieblogstheworld), they all taught me new things. They helped me grow. I have no doubt that The Olive Branch will be a similar endeavor, though admittedly I hope it survives a bit longer. I can’t wait to see what this new adventure will teach me, and I hope you come along for the ride!