Notice anything new with my blog?

The blog birthday bash revamp has commenced…

Last night I purchased my very own, personalized URL through WordPress. If you look up in the address bar, you’ll see it. I am now I am so excited and it was so easy. A couple of clicks and it was done. And the nice thing is that WordPress will automatically redirect anyone coming to my old WordPress URL seamlessly.

It cost me $25 US (and it’ll need to be renewed each year) but to me it’s worth it. It’s a big step towards implementing the things I’ve been learning at Kristen Lamb’s Blogging to Build Your Brand workshop.

I have also created a URL-specific email to match ( through WordPress and Google Apps. This was a bit more complicated. To be honest, I had no idea what I was doing but I just followed the WordPress step-by-step instructions and voila, it works.

I am so pumped!

Have you considered moving to your own URL? What made you decide to do it or what holds you back from taking that step?

I’ve also been working on a new header for the launch of my new theme/layout. I struggle with this because although I am familiar with graphic design software like Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator, design is not my thing at all. I can typically “recreate” a visual but to start from scratch and come up with a concept hurts my brain. But, I did give it a try. I am still not 100% sure but I figure I’ve at least got something for the big blog birthday blowout and I can always change it later if I find it’s not quite “me”. I tried to make it fun, fresh, and fahhhbulous! I can’t wait to show it to y’all!

Sneak peek of my new header

Here’s a little sneak peek of the cartoon-type of image of myself that’s in my new header. Isn’t she uberlicious!?!

I updated my Avatar to match so when I post or add comments to other folks blog, this is the image that will appear to represent me.

What do you think?

Is it good branding to use the same image for the avatar that’s in a header to represent the person? Or do you think real pictures for avatars are better? What do you use and why?



  1. I still want to create a custom header. I have an idea but executing it is the tricky part 🙂

    congrats on the new URL. I love having mine, I think it is worth spending the money on. I never thought of doing an email…didn’t even know I could!

    • I love your header as it ties into your blog title beautifully. That being said, if you have an idea for a custom header, I say go for it! Execution is definitely the tricky part but you never know until you try. 🙂 I struggled with designing mine. I contemplated hiring a graphic artist to come up with something – it’s typically not that expensive to have a header designed. One option to consider.
      I love the new URL – so pumped to be making some changes. I agree, it’s well worth a few extra bucks. I had no idea about the email either until I started surfing and reading the WordPress instructions. Like I said, I had NO idea what I was doing when I set it up but I was able to figure it out and make it happen. I love it. You should give it a whirl – it’s free. If you run into any issues, just email me and let me know. I’d be happy to help.

  2. Author Kristen Lamb says:

    Beautiful page! I prefer a picture of the real person, but an avatar is still an improvement over a book cover or a picture of a cat. Looks awsome. I have web page envy :D.

    • It’s a high compliment if you have web page envy. 🙂 Thanks for your take on the real vs avatar pic. I figure I’ll revert back to a real picture at some point – likely when I’m sick of looking at the comedic version of myself. 🙂 Have a fantastic weekend!

  3. I love the avatar . . . think it compliments your blog very well.

    The custom URL does make things easier, as well as the custom email. Once people know your name, then it’s easy for them to remember those things.

    Just added your blog to my subscription list. I’ll be back to visit soon!

    • Thanks so much Bridgette – I really appreciate your feedback. Yeah, I hope the custom URL will really make things easier and more straight forward to remember. Thanks for the subscription – I just subscribed to yours – looking forward to your posts.

  4. I love, love, love the header design. I think it looks fantastic! I have no idea how to create thumbnails for comments (as you can see), avatars or otherwise. I wish I did. Perhaps that’s only a WordPress thing? But as a reader of comments, I much prefer to see a real person.

    • Thank you!!!! 🙂 In WordPress, I load an image as my “gravatar” and profile picture under my Settings. From there, it appears as a thumbnail automatically. Not sure if other blog platforms offer the same thing and not sure how to do it on via your own design. Maybe try googling the question and see what comes up to try. I appreciate your take on the the picture – thank you.

  5. Congrats on your own url! The header is great, too. Agree with Kristen that I would prefer a real picture to an avatar but I feel like I’m getting a sort of real picture in the header – might not be true, though!

    • Thank you Annette. I appreciate the feedback. My hubby actually said he thought it was a really good comedic replica of me (although considerably thinner…LOL).

  6. I think your header is terrific. Congrats on your URL too. I like the avatar, it suits the tone of your blog and your header. Like you said, you can always revert to a picture later if you get tired of it. Good for you for taking this step.

  7. Great job, Natalie, looks great!

    Personally, I think a picture is better than an avatar…but ultimately, its your blog so do whatever works for you. Congrats on the url, too. I’ve been tossing the idea around myself and you’ve pushed me closer to the edge.

    ~ Kate

    • Thanks Kate – I love all the feedback! You should absolutely do it. I didn’t think when I first started out that it would matter but after I did it, I felt a swell of pride.

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