So... does something look different around here?
I should hope so.
I changed a lot about the design of this blog, from the layout of the sidebar, to the menu options across the top, updated the about me section, fixed the subscription option that had been broken and I hadn't noticed, so please subscribe.. oh, and did you notice the new header?!?!?!
I really needed to update that header... like years ago. A graphic artist friend made mine for me not long after I started out, and it was beautiful and it reflected what my blog was about then... which in many ways was nothing like it is now.
The image had a baby in a cloth diaper, homemade pickles, homemade bread, solar cooking, baking soda... all representing the extreme frugality (and mom of babies) that this blog was about back then.
My life has changed a lot since then. I'm no longer in dire need of saving every last cent that I'd need to cook using the sun. My youngest has been out of diapers for... 8 years... I don't live extremely frugally anymore. And the logo having the words "A Rich Life on a Minimum Wage" no longer is relevant, because I don't live off a minimum wage.
The focus of my life has changed, with the main themes of my life being parenting neurodiverse and complex teens and preteens, all the while being a disabled single mother dealing with my own mental health and physical health issues. I still am frugal but nothing like I used to be, and in fact, I have trauma from those days of extreme poverty when I needed to be writing posts about how to minimize electricity spent on fans in the summer. These days, my health necessitates having air conditioning all year long, yes, even in the winter my bedroom is cooled with air conditioning.
The theme from this blog is now Money Mindfulness and More. I've been mulling over a theme change already for years, and narrowed it down to this. Money Mindfulness and More has two main meanings.
1) Money Mindfulness, meaning being conscious of where your money is being spent and making sure that it is being used in ways that fit your values- spending more on things that matter to you, and saving money on things that do not, while keeping your expenditures less than your income.
2) Money. Mindfulness. and More. 3 separate things. This blog talks about all sorts of money related things. Mindfulness is a very important tool in therapy, especially DBT and other trauma and anxiety therapy and it is something I use regularly. Mindfulness in the theme represents, therefore, my focus on mental health in my life and in this blog as well. And then more. Because there is so much more I talk about.
As for the images I chose for the header:
The background image is a wild area near me where I teach foraging classes, and it represents the foraging aspects of this blog.
The image of my kids is from a vacation we took, and it represents the frugal adventures and excitement I try to include in mine and my kids' lives, not to mention the fact that parenting them is one of the main and most cherished aspects of my life.
The image of me is from a wonderful trip I took with my kids, and was snapped by my son as we zipped across a lake in a motor boat. I was in a state of pure bliss, doing that with my children. (My daughter was next to me in the picture but I cropped her out because I wasn't going to put any of my children twice in the header; I don't play favorites like that.)
And the last picture is a picture from my foraging cookbook, Penniless Foodie in the Wild, unfortunately now out of print. It was taken outside, presenting my beautiful dish in nature. It is dairy free panna cotta made from homemade cashew milk and wind edible flowers. It represents foraging, my love of good and beautiful food, my love of feeding people, my love of writing, my emotional resilience and fortitude when I worked on getting out of the deep dark depression I got into not long after the book was published, when I saw how many obstacles got in my way of my book being the bestseller I'd dreamed of...
Basically, I couldn't think of pictures and ideas that better represent me and my life and what I value and what I share on this blog than those.
While not penniless, I still have financial struggles and couldn't afford to pay a graphic artist to make it for me, so I made it in Canva, and I think it is good enough, even if not perfect. And that, of all things, represents my efforts to accept that it is ok for me to be less than perfect, that it's ok for things to be good enough.
I also made a different version of the header to use as a profile picture for my new Facebook page.
I'm really proud of myself. It was a lot of hard work, a lot of trial and error, a lot of teaching myself new skills, but I think I did a great job.
(And though most of you aren't local, today I also revamped my local website where I advertise my foraging classes, and I raised my prices to ones that reflect my capabilities and what I have to offer, while also providing options for people who need lower pricing. If you're local and want a link to that website, just shoot me an email to PennilessParenting@yahoo.com.)
Sooooooo... What do you think?
What do those pictures in the header bring to mind for you? What do you picture in your head when you hear the term "Money mindfulness and more"?
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