July 30, 2014, marked Divine In The Daily’s two-year blogaversary! The day came and went without any fanfare, but I most certainly did not forget the occasion. After all, how could I forget the day I finally started getting all those words out of my head and onto the screen so they could be useful to someone besides me?!
So today, I want to step back and celebrate this blogaversary by honoring four special people who have been a tremendous blessing to me in regards to this blog – Brenda, Shalon, Monica, and Tom. From day one, these individuals were there to pray, support, encourage, and love. Better yet? They’re still hanging in there today, and I don’t see them hitting the road anytime soon. For that, I am so grateful.
Let me tell you more about each one of these beautiful people, may I?
I served on a board of directors with Brenda’s husband for three years, so I’d conversed with her on several occasions. We were very familiar with each other and enjoyed one another’s company, but never had that much time to chat at length. I respected and admired her fiercely as a wife, mother, and fellow human being. Let me tell you, Brenda is phenomenal. I will never, ever forget the way she’s blessed me and this blog.
On July 30, 2012, the day I launched the blog, Brenda called and left a message on my phone at 2:24 p.m. I will always remember the moment I listened to her voice mail, and have it saved on my phone to this day. I was at the beach with my kids, sitting on the sidelines watching them frolic on the shoreline. It was then that I heard Brenda’s words, “Read your blog posts on your new blog and I just had to call you. I am so blown away and impressed. I just wanted to chat with you about that for two or three minutes.” Needless to say, I called her back immediately, right there at the beach. After some conversation about my new blog and her new photography business, Brenda shared that she felt compelled to offer prayer for me and the blog. I obliged, of course. So there on the beach, a phone separating the two of us, we prayed for this blog.
Brenda is a pivotal person because she took a risk and stepped out of her comfort zone to cover this blog in prayer. She most definitely didn’t have to do it, but she did it anyway. And she continues to pop in to the blog to this day to show her ongoing love and support. Thank you, Brenda.
My, oh my. Where should I start with sweet Shalon? In April 2012, I made the decision that I would be launching this blog, Divine In The Daily. The blog I began in January 2010 never really launched, so I knew I wanted to do this blog right from the start. With that in mind, I was certain of a few things. I wanted to hire a custom blog designer. I knew I wanted a ProPhoto Blog so I could have lots of options for beautiful photography on the site. And I needed to find someone whose design style complemented my personal style. Oh yeah, and I knew the designer would have to be patient with my perfectionistic tendencies. Fortunately, after hours of online research, I “met” Shalon!
Shalon is a blog and graphic designer at Pretty Lovely Design. I’ve worked with her for 28 months, and it’s been an incredible ride. Pretty much anything visual you see on my blog? Shalon designed it. Together, we’ve customized everything to my liking.
I was impressed with Shalon’s service from the beginning. She had me complete an extensive background form which detailed everything I wanted in the blog, down to minutia details such as fonts, accent colors, and white space between blog posts. Shalon has been ridiculously patient with me throughout the whole process. In fact, she’s been so patient and gracious with me that I can’t even begin to explain. But here’s one example – I made countless revisions to the blog header before the blog was launched in July 2012, and then in July 2013, she helped me redesign the header to fit the feel of the blog one year in. Shalon’s designed business cards and graphics for me, and has helped problem solve various technical problems on the blog as well.
I’m excited to work with Shalon in upcoming weeks. She’ll be updating my logo and business cards, will be creating Facebook and Twitter covers for the blog, and last but not least, she’ll design my #31Days graphic for 2014!
I’m pleased to call Shalon a pivotal person because she’s not only met my expectations, but has exceeded them in regards to all design aspects of this blog. I couldn’t be more pleased. Thank you, Shalon.
Monica’s been a faithful reader of the blog since day one. She’s also one of twelve individuals on the Divine In The Daily prayer and support team. Words don’t adequately describe how important Monica has been to the life of this blog. May I suggest she’s been one of my blogging lifelines? I’m pretty sure Monica’s read most, if not all of the blog posts I’ve ever written. For that, I’m grateful. Because she knows and cares about my heart.
In the early days, when barely anybody was reading, Monica was there with a Facebook like or sweet comment on the blog. She’s the one that’s sent me Facebook messages and emails letting me know how much various posts have moved her personally. She’s one that’s encouraged me with texts when I’ve been discouraged. She’s the one who reminded me that one thoughtful comment has the potential to turn the blog into a space for rich, meaningful conversation, just the way I’ve always dreamed it could be. She’s the one I’d trust with the biggest and best news this blog’s ever had…before anyone else. She’s the one that knows what this blog means to me and how it fits into my life, and I’m pretty sure she’d do just about anything to show her support.
It’s my pleasure to call Monica a pivotal person in the life of this blog because she’s probably the most grace-filled, loyal and intuitive readers I’ve ever had. She makes me feel like my writing is worthy and worthwhile. Thank you, Monica.
Tom has been a faithful reader of my blog from the start. He’s also one of twelve on my prayer and support team. If I ever named a Godfather of this blog, it would most definitely be Tom.
Tom is the most loyal male reader of my blog besides my husband. Yes, as much as I want this blog to be for men as it is for women, my readership continues to be about 80% female. So having Tom’s predictable male presence is greatly appreciated and never, ever taken for granted.
Tom plays a similar role to Monica on this blog, only he’s male and is probably closer to my dad’s age than my age! As you might be able to tell, Tom and Monica have pretty much covered the bases for the life of this blog in regards to support, love and encouragement. When the blog was fresh and new, and only a handful of people were reading, Tom was there with his Facebook likes and encouraging comments. When I need a little humor, when I need a dose of reality, when I need encouragement, fact checking or history buffing, Tom’s my man. When I sent out an email to the prayer and support team with prayer requests last spring, Tom responded with insight and a prayer I needed more than anything. I’m not sure how he identified the most pressing prayer request of my life without me ever saying it, but he did. Not many people REALLY get me. Tom does. And I’ve only met him once.
For Tom and his unwavering presence, I am beyond grateful. I respect Tom immensely and pray he’ll never leave this place I call my own. Thank you, Tom. You have most definitely been a pivotal person in the life of this blog.
I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling the love today. Love’s all around. It’s my greatest desire for you to feel welcomed and known in this place. So please, make yourself comfortable here. Take off your shoes and stay for a while. Make this place yours as much as it is mine.
But before I go, there’s one more thing I want you to know…
There are so many more who I could’ve honored today. Heck, I could write a week’s worth of posts on all of you who have been supportive these past two years. Whether you’ve been around since week one or just discovered my blog last month, I’m happy and blessed to have you here. There’s one thing for sure. I wouldn’t be much of a writer without readers. So thank you for reading, thank you for responding, and thank you for engaging in this place. Your love and support has been tremendous. Your willingness to have fun, go deep, and be vulnerable has been incredible.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
With a grateful heart for the two years that have passed, let’s kick off year three! It’s going to be grand.