There are so many fabulous bloggers out there, and we want to highlight them on Cityline.ca. We’ll be profiling different lifestyle bloggers from month to month — they might write about food, fashion, beauty, décor, parenting, entertaining, gardening, you get the idea! For November 2014, we’re putting the spotlight on A Pretty Life in the Suburbs. Run by Jo-Anna, her blog combines her love of home décor and DIY with her passion for cooking and baking, all while living in the suburbs of Calgary. Here’s our Q&A with Jo-Anna:
When did you start A Pretty Life in the Suburbs and what was the inspiration behind starting the blog? How did you come up with your blog’s name?
My mom introduced me to blogging in October 2011. I had never heard of blogs up to that point, but I found the idea of having a space of my own on the internet so intriguing! I’ve always loved to create, share and exchange recipes and ideas with friends, so the thought of having a platform to share content every day was amazing to me! So the next day I sat down at the computer and started my blog! When I started my blog and was deciding on a name, I didn’t really know at the time what my niche would be, but I live in the suburbs and love to inspire people to live a beautiful life, so I put the two together and came up with the name. Much to my surprise I discovered that I loved blogging, and haven’t stopped since, and that was 3 years ago.
On your blog you write a variety of different posts, discussing everything from food to décor. What do you like about covering different topics on your blog, and how do you find a common thread to bring all of your posts together?
My blog covers a number of different topics with everything from recipes, to craft tutorials, to organizing tips, to room makeovers, and I like it that way! I have never wanted my blog to focus on any one topic, because we’re all multifaceted in our lives, and I feel that the variety of topics is more consistent with real life. My real life includes feeding a family, decorating for the holidays, finding ways to organize and make life just a little less hectic. So when I make a great recipe or a simple wreath for the door, I know my readers will love both!
Tell us about a post (or two!) that you’re particularly proud of and want to share with Cityline.ca readers.
I love my Herb Roasted Pork with Brown Sugar & Rosemary Roasted Butternut Squash & Apples post. We love this recipe so much, but I really love this post because I have such fond memories of cooking in the fall. Fall is my favourite time of year for cooking and baking, and this post takes me back to a nice and cozy time.
I also really love my Turtle Cookies post. I love cooking, but baking is where my real passion in the kitchen is. And this post makes me want to reach through the screen and help myself to some delicious cookies, so I hope it does the same for my readers!
What do you hope readers get from visiting your blog?
My motto is Home Life Made Simple. I really want to inspire people to be creative in their kitchen and homes, but to always keep in mind that simple is best…things don’t need to be complicated to be great! I keep my recipes easy to make, and as clean as possible, and I like to throw in the occasional home project or craft, or personal story so that I can connect with my readers. I really truly want to help people make their everyday lives a bit easier and a little more creative…even if it is through a great recipe or a craft.
What are some other blogs you love reading?
I love to read blogs and am always so inspired by all the great ideas and recipes out there. I’m most inspired by these amazing Canadian bloggers…it’s hard not to keep this list going on and on…there are so many great bloggers!
Cheri of Kitchen Simplicity
Aimee of Simple Bites
Virginia of Fynes Designs
Julie of Dinner with Julie
Jenny of The Brunette Baker
Barb (my Mom) of Keeping with the Times
Lucy of Craftberry Bush
Alex of Northstory
Tara of Suburble
What’s your top advice for other bloggers?
My top advice for bloggers is not to compare yourself to others, because another blogger’s success doesn’t take away from yours. Just be yourself, put your blinders on and create amazing content! Blogging is a journey and when done right it is a wonderful and supportive experience. Reach out to the blogging community, help support and promote your fellow bloggers and you will be amazed at how inspiring other bloggers are!
We want to hear from you! Do you know a blogger we should feature on Cityline.ca? Maybe it’s you! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and include “Cityline Featured Blogger” in the subject line. And don’t forget to include a link to the blog! Look forward to hearing from you!
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