Back in February, I had the opportunity to attend the Build Your Blog Conference, put on by the lovely and talented Six Sister’s Stuff. It was a one day event, packed with fantastic classes, lots of fun bloggers, and a wealth of information that I am still trying to wrap my head around.
The keynote speaker was Brooke Walker from Studio 5, a local lifestyle show here in Salt Lake. She spoke about how she believes that bloggers can and should be influencers. There are six ways she shared of how bloggers can do this. I’m just going to bullet point five of these items, and then go more in depth about one of them.
- Add more voice: Maintain a strong voice
- Ask interesting questions: thoughts don’t always provoke more thoughts, but a good question will inspire thoughts
- Play up the positive: Readers may not remember what you wrote, but they will remember how you made them feel
- Balance the bucket: Help others to fill their ‘bucket's’, and you will find your bucket getting full
- Leave a lasting impact: Are people reading or are they responding?
I could seriously go in depth about each of those points; listening to Brooke speak was inspiring, and the way she presented each of her ideas just made sense!
The main point I want to focus on today was to find a focus. Brooke argued that to be an influencer, we must find a focus and commit to it. Now, I’ll just say, that really, my main focus of this blog is to inspire creativity. I love being able to share projects that empower people to have the confidence to try something new. I love hearing that someone tried a project of mine, or found a way to make it even better. That’s what being creative is all about! Getting a new comment on a post – new or old – just making that connection is something that lifts me up. I love the relationships I’ve formed with you – my readers – as well as with other bloggers. This blog has truly been a blessing in my life in so many ways.
And while I am in no way the biggest, most read, most inspiring blogger out there, I do feel very grateful for the opportunity I have to share with a large group of readers. And today I want to share a new focus that I am involved in.
I grew up in Southern Oregon in a smaller town. My parents and both of my sisters still live there now. My dad is the president and CEO of the hospital there, and we decided that we wanted to do something by way of service for his hospital. Thus, Burps of Love was born.
My mom, sisters, sister in laws and I are launching a year long service project. Our goal is to make and deliver 800 burp cloths to my dad’s hospital: Sky Lakes Medical Center.
Photo by Your Vantage Photography
Why burp cloths? We want each new mommy – whether it’s her first go around, or her fifth – to go home with something made with love, something handmade, something special for her and her baby. Burp cloths are simple and easy to make, and something that is completely do-able for us to reach our goal. We make the burp cloths out of snuggle flannel, and crochet around the edges. I’ve used these with each of my babies, and while they are darling and work great, the thing I loved most about them was knowing that my mom had made them just for my sweet little baby girls. We’re a creative community; we understand the value of something homemade, right?
This is a great opportunity for a service project, and I hope you will want to get involved. We have a downloadable pattern that is free for use of this type (not for making and selling your own burp cloths!) I’ve got a stack of burp cloths that I work on while I’m watching TV in the evenings. If you work with local youth and church groups, this is a great opportunity to get them involved. I work with 8 & 9 year old girls in my church. While teaching them to crochet might be a little difficult, they could pin patterns to fabric and cut them out. Out of one yard of fabric you can cut four burp cloths. If I gave each of my 15 girls a yard of fabric and they each cut out 4 – that right there is 60 burp cloths cut! I used to work with teenage girls, and I could easily have taught them how to crochet. Even donations of fabric – cut or un-cut – are helpful and appreciated.
Please check out our Burps of Love Facebook Page, and feel free to email me with any questions - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for letting me share this with you today!