HELLO people of the Internet! I’ve got a big announcement today about the future of my little blog. With May on the horizon, I’ve officially been a blogger for a year and a half, and it’s time to take a much-needed leap in a different direction.
When I started Muffins and Miles, I was working a 9-5 gig at the Walt Disney Company in LA. It was an admin job that provided wonderful hours and job security but not a lot of creativity. Building this website was a way for me to get the creative juices flowing again, and I wanted to have a portfolio of sorts to showcase my love for fitness and baking. I learned so many valuable things from starting this website the way I did: how to take nice pictures of my food, how to pick my battles with WordPress and how to write fitness reviews.
I also learned that it’s pretty hard to grow something with a wide focus. Trying to be an expert in too many things is exhausting and actually quite limiting, and I wasn’t really sure what it was I wanted to write about anyway. There are so, soooo many wonderful and talented men and women out there who are crushing it in their respective blogging niches, whether it be food or fitness, and I honestly never felt like I was contributing much to the conversation that hadn’t already been said by someone else with a wider sphere of influence.
What I didn’t realize when I started this blog was how desperately I missed writing. I originally went to college to become a novelist (a dream of mine that is still very much alive), but for years after my high school newspaper columnist days, I didn’t have a platform to share my words. Most of the posts currently on the blog are fluffy and took me maybe 30 minutes to write. Once they were posted, I didn’t give them much thought and they didn’t have any profound effect on me as a writer. I coasted through the first half of 2016, giving myself lots of excuses for why the website wasn’t taking off like I’d hoped.
In the second half of 2016, shit hit the fan in my personal life, I stopped writing posts for the website and things on Muffins and Miles have been rocky at best since then. Before I really told anybody that I was moving away from LA, I made a Facebook post and told everyone I was selling all of my furniture. Come and get it. From there, people started messaging me, asking what was up, where I was going and why. I didn’t want to give them a false, cookie cutter answer, but the truth was kind of a long story, so I decided to write this post about the beauty of letting go and finding a new dream.
This post was the first post that I’d put up on my website that a). made me feel alive as a writer and b). resonated with or hit a nerve with people. I had probably 30 people text me, email me, send me a Facebook message after that post went live. People I hadn’t spoken to in years, people from high school, people I saw every day at work, my friends. And everybody was saying some version of the same thing: I can relate. I understand. I feel the same way. It’s so refreshing to hear someone speak so truthfully.
Once I was settled down in Chicago after the big move, I decided it was time to share something super personal and I wrote a post about living with my eating disorder. I cannot even begin to tell you how freeing it was to have that post out there for people to read. I was no longer hiding behind a disease that has burdened me privately for a decade. Again, I was overwhelmed by the amount of support and outreach from friends and family members after that post went live.
Authenticity is everything and I don’t feel like I was being very authentic as a food and fitness blogger. Baking and exercising are my hobbies and I love them dearly. Hell, I’m in the midst of making fitness my career. But my strengths as a human being are not food photography or recipe development or fitness reviews. What I can offer in that realm is not unique to me and it doesn’t fuel my passion as a writer. I feel like my strengths lie in digging into the uncomfortable, exposing the ugly truth and straight up connecting with other people. There is so much opportunity for conversation and development and growth once people start to open up and accept vulnerability, and I’d love to play a role in that movement.
For me, 2017 is all about choosing happiness, blindly pursuing passions and keeping mental health a priority. Moving forward, I’m going to be writing essays on the things I’m learning about staying body positive and improving my mental well-being. I’ll be talking about the ways I’m trying to take care of myself, both mentally and physically, helpful resources and books I’m reading and general goings-on in life. In short, shit is about to get real. But don’t worry, it won’t always be the heavy stuff. The first thing I’m thinking of writing is going to be about my dating life, which I can guarantee will be more comical than anything else.
For those of you that have enjoyed the blog thus far, I hope that you’ll follow along now that I’m switching gears to something that feels more authentic to me. I’m going to be transitioning the look of the website, the branding, everything, over the next month or so and start fresh in June. The name will remain the same because honestly, it’s way too much work for me to even THINK about switching domain names AND I still feel like the name is unequivocally me.
To figuring it out, one day at a time,