It was Wednesday, September 23, 2009 and I took the plunge and started this website. Never in a million years would I have dreamed that it would have so many twists and turns and lead to so much fun.
Five years is a long time on the internet. Many websites and web based businesses fail in the first year, leaving only those with drive and passion. I've got that in spades.
When I started this site, I was looking for a way to sell my hardy succulents online. I got a little side tracked and wrote some pages that were interesting to me, but were off topic, so gradually I moved those pages to three other sites, each one on a slightly different topic but still in the gardening niche.
I tightened up my focus, and deleted many pages that I no longer felt confident were serving the needs of my visitors (you!). I've found that in the past two years, social media such as Facebook, Pinterest and others have become more important, and one thing that they absolutely demand is large pictures.
This means that I have moved to displaying larger pinnable pictures so that visitors can share my ideas and inspiration.
I changed my template to one that has two columns - a wider content column, and the narrower right hand column. There are several advantages to a larger column - bigger pictures, for one thing!
I learned to write the kinds of posts that my visitors want to know more about. Some of my most visited pages are about identifying and caring for succulent plants, and making displays of interesting planters and containers.
In the fall of 2010, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis and Hashimotos Thyroiditis, both autoimmune disorders. The symptoms of both of these is fatigue and dizziness which had been plaguing me for several years by the time I finally got the attention of a Neurologist.
This means that I could no longer maintain the level of energy to sell the plants, so in 2013 I sold the online plant business to some lovely people in Ontario.
They have taken my dream and run with it, selling tender succulents for wedding flowers, and collections of my favorite hardy succulents like Sedum and Sempervivum for gardens and containers, green roofs and mosaics.
Suddenly, it's five years later and I am shocked and amazed at how much fun it's been, even though some days are a bit of a struggle with my health issues. I plan to keep going for another five, and five more after that. Who knows what path it will lead me on next?
Join me in celebrating this milestone; I'm giving away five Succulent Crafts E-Courses, a 12 installment online course that I normally sell for $19.99.
Update; I couldn't bring myself to limit the number of free e-courses that I gave out, so everyone that sent me an email mentioning this celebration got a free enrollment - congratulations!