This week has been a HUGE one for this here little blog. Though I have been reading about personal finance for the past couple years, I have only been writing for 5 months. In that time, the amount of encouragement I have gotten from the PF community has been mind-blowing. I want to write this post to give a big THANK YOU back to those who have helped me along the way (in no particular order)…
First off, I couldn’t do it without YOU!! My readers who have popped in to see what I am up to, asked questions to show they were interested and challenged me when they didn’t understand something specific. I am so appreciative of the time you take out of your day to interact with my little part of the bloggy world.
Depending on the subject, writing can be a very personal thing to do. It can be excruciating trying to get the words just right (I know, I have 45 drafts waiting to be finished!), but knowing that whatever you write, people you have never met may criticize or dissect it and come to the wrong conclusions. Still, I welcome the challenge and (so far) have been lucky to have no negative comments. 🙂
At the start of this blog, I promised to be transparent with my life, my money, and my future endeavors. My purpose was/is to show that you can be at the bottom and still climb your way back to the top. In order to do that, you must celebrate the highs AND the lows. But many people don’t write about the lows…and I certainly don’t blame them. To only write the good is a much easier path to follow. Who doesn’t like unicorns and rainbows??
But for those who do tackle writing about their low points, I commend you. I know how painful it is to mentally go back to the places you have worked so hard to recover from. Writing about my divorce, losing my properties, or my childhood (as it relates to money) have all been dark places for me to go. But I do it. I go there so I can help someone else who is standing in the same spot wondering where to go next. I go there for you. So thank you for being a part of this blog through the good times and while reading about the bad.
Secondly, I would like to thank J. Money at Budgets are Sexy and Rockstar Finance. I have been reading J’s blog for a couple of years and he was the first to inspire me to write again. I knew that I wanted to join the FIRE (financial independence/early retirement) conversation but I wasn’t completely sure of myself and if my voice would be adding anything. Would I have enough ammo to write? Turns out I do…so much so that I stump myself to not finishing posts because a new idea pops into my head…I’m talking to you 45 drafts!
But back to J… I have crowned Mr. J. Money the “Mr. Congeniality” of the PF world. His posts are often upbeat, he joins in the conversation by responding to comments (I seriously don’t know how he makes the time!), and he does a lot to gather the PF community together. If you are a new PF or FIRE blogger, I encourage you to join his Million Dollar Club. 🙂 That post alone has driven more readers to my site than any other…until this week…
This week one of my posts was featured on Rockstar Finance (if you didn’t read it and are curious why my savings rate is insanely high, click HERE). Now, I knew RF had a big following – after all, I read it so I figured other people did as well…but I had NO idea how many people followed and from every corner of the world!! My stats for unique visitors for that one day were way more than double what my stats have been in the past 5 months. WHAT?!!! I was literally beside myself.
Not only were the Cubs about to win the World Series (!!!!!) but I was winning in my own way. 🙂 This boost (and all the comments!) gave me the confidence I was lacking on my low traffic days and also gave me the opportunity to reach a larger audience, in turn leaving me the possibility to make a bigger difference. I am truly appreciative.
Last but not least, I would like to thank all of the other PF and FIRE bloggers who have lifted me up with their comments, tweets, ideas, and personal email interactions. Especially:
Tonya from Budget and the Beach – she’ my girl! I don’t know her, but I know her, you know?
I have been listening to the Martinis and Your Money podcast for a while and my favorite episodes are by far the Happy Hour ones! During those episodes, you get a chance to hear some of the best ladies in PF (Shannon, Melanie, Mrs. Frugalwoods, and of course Tonya) converse about topics related to that show. With 4 distinct personalities and blogs centered around getting out of debt, frugal living and budgeting, these ladies have it all covered. At Budget and the Beach, Tonya writes about her journey from rock bottom after being laid off until now when she is finally debt free! Her writing is inspiring and thoughtful and very down to earth. And even though I don’t know her I have begun to think of her as a friend. 🙂
Mr. & Mrs. Groovy from Freedom is Groovy. I don’t know them either, but I equate both to my cool older cousins. Obviously, they’re groovy – duh – but they are also kind, loving and, most importantly, real.
I first stumbled upon the Groovy’s when the Mr was on the Radical Personal Finance podcast. His idea for a Junior IRA peaked my interest and I have been reading ever since. I recently emailed Mr. Groovy regarding one of his posts and was sooooo nervous to break the invisible third wall of communication. Bloggers write, we read and comment, we tweet, but to reach out to someone personally completely freaked me out!! I was quickly put at ease. His response was sincere and gracious without a hint of annoyance…thank goodness!! Both the Mr and Mrs are now retired and continue to give back to the PF community with insightful blog posts and tweeting posts of other bloggers like me! 😘
So that’s it! This may read like an acceptance speech because, to some extent, it is. As I tweeted last week, I feel as though I have finally found my tribe. Writing about money is not a popular subject (to “normal” people) and it is often hard to find where you may fit in. I am happy to say I feel at home in this space, on Miss Mazuma, and I hope that you do too. So kick off your shoes, have a glass of wine, and let’s talk money.
Until next time…