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Spring Bucket List & 10 Free Blog Post Ideas 25

Spring Bucket List & 10 Free Blog Post Ideas // Being Leanna

Happy first day of spring!!! After what has felt like an endless winter I am so happy that today marks the first day of spring. There is still 2 feet of snow on the ground here (yuck) but i’m hoping it’ll melt quickly so that I can start to break out my t-shirts. We had a teaser of a nice week in February of 60+ degree weather and I’ve been dreaming about spring ever since. The daffodils were even starting to pop up but now they’re covered in snow.

Last year I wrote a spring bucket list post so I figured what way to celebrate the equinox by doing the same thing for this year! A lot of the things on my bucket list this year are the same so I figured i’d sweeten the deal for you guys by also including 10 free blog post ideas for spring! Click on the link at the bottom of this post to see the list, no downloads or signups necessary!

Spring Bucket List

//Go hiking now that I’ve got real hiking boots

//Finish up Helene’s course Instagram For Success – I’ve been majorly slacking on finishing this for some reason!

//Eat outside! This is one of the best parts of the spring and summer for me. 

/ Go to a happy hour outside! Again, being outside is the best part about spring. There’s a bar right next to my work that has the most amazing patio and I can’t wait to get out there and relax. 

//Buy a house! Yeah, lofty goal but i’m currently very seriously looking. So exciting and stressful all at once! If you’re looking to see how I’ve been saving up for a house, check out my spending ban post here! 

//Clean out all of my books. I’m a book hoarder. I still have books from my teenage days that really just need to get donated. 

//Start running outside. I said this last year too and it barely happened. I hate running but it makes me feel so good afterwards so I need to get back in the habit. 

//Clean out my closet. Before I transition my wardrobe from winter to spring I want to try everything on. Donate what I don’t want, toss what can’t be donated and make a list of things I need in my wardrobe. 

//Create more fashion posts. Keeping on the theme of going through all my clothes, I want to do more fashion posts! I miss them and even though I probably won’t have a ton of stuff to link i’m hoping you guys would still like them. 

//Book my fall trip to Denver! That’s right, i’m going to Denver in the fall for a long weekend! I’ll have more details when the plans are more solid. 

//Spend a weekend up at camp! 

10 Blog Post Ideas For Spring

Hope you liked my spring bucket list, be sure to share your bucket list with me in the comments or tweet me @BeingLeanna when you write your own spring bucket list! 

You might also like my 30 before 30 list!

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How To Update Old Blog Posts 24

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Hey ya’ll! 

In the beginning of the year I set a goal for myself of updating my old blog posts. I’ve been going through them starting all the way at the beginning (I started this blog by doing a month long link up!) and doing a few posts every month throughout the year. So far, it’s been going great! I’ve seen some interaction on old posts that never had any sizable views before which is incredibly exciting. 

Because of how helpful these changes have been for me, I wanted to share with you all how I update old blog posts! 

How I Update Old Blog Posts

Pick a Post

I started way back in the beginning of my Being Leanna days and have been slowly working backwards. You might only have a few to update but I suggest going through every post just to make sure!

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Yoast SEO Plugin

First of all, I should note that I use WordPress but I’m sure there are similar plugins for Blogger. Ya’ll, this is the best plugin for WordPress. We all know that SEO (search engine optimization) is incredibly important for your blog posts and I never had this when I first started. The first thing I do is to work on my SEO. 

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

SEO

I add in a keyword, something that resonates with the tone of the whole post. For this post I chose “organized” because that was the main topic. Staying organized. From there I also add in a “meta description” which is the description you see under the title when you Google a page. I don’t know about you guys but I always read that description when i’m looking for something on Google so I know I want it to be something that will give a potential reader a good idea of what to expect in my post. 

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Readability 

Another amazing thing about Yoast is that they analyze the readability of your post. It’s been incredibly helpful when editing my posts because early on, I was all about the wordy sentences. Sentences that are too long aren’t easy to read. Strong writing has never been a skill of mine but i’m working on it! Also, In my old posts I never used subheadings either which visually break up all the words. I like to go back into posts and add relevant subtitles to break up all of the text. Subheadings are also a great place to add links to your other blog posts!

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Writing

Obviously this is the most important part of any post. When I go through and edit and update old blog posts I always begin by reading the text out loud. This helps identify any sentences that are structured strangely and times when you repeat something too often. 

You’ll also notice that over time your writing style has changed, mine certainly has. I like to go back and update old blog posts so that they’re more in my current voice. Back over a year ago I was still struggling to find my style of writing so it’s good to back through and edit things. 

I have also gone back to edit the formatting of my words. What was I thinking loving centered text? Now, I justify all of my posts. I love how it looks, and I think it fits more with my style. 

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Title

This one is a hard one. Sometimes I want to update the title but I don’t have the original picture to be able to re-edit. In those cases I generally just add onto the current title like I did in this case. The post went from “How I Stay Organized” to “How I Stay Organized- Using Multiple Notebooks” which gives a bit more of a glimpse into what the post is about. Always make sure your title is captivating! 

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Pictures

Can’t forget the pictures! In my old posts I always just added pictures in here and there and never did much with them. When I go through and update my blog posts I like to resize the pictures (so they aren’t ginormous and load faster) and I like to make them all uniform in size. Back in the day I never added titles to my pictures either, big mistake. When you to to pin them on Pinterest there weren’t any captions at all. Not good. 

Open up the picture editor and add in a title. I always rename pictures to have the same title as the blog post with my blog name at the end. I like the uniformity. The Alt caption is what shows up at the bottom of your picture when you post to Pinterest. Super helpful for anyone Pinning your images! Speaking of, there’s a pinnable image for this post at the bottom if you want to save this! 

PicMonkey 

In addition to editing the pictures that are already in the post, if I can I like to add in a Pinterest friendly image. Vertical is the way to go for Pinterest and most of my old pictures were always horizontal. I’ll open up PicMonkey (it’s free!) and edit away until I get a nice, vertical image. This might just be me but I like to put my name on all of my pictures. Sort of like a water mark. Not sure how helpful it is, but it makes me feel better so I do it. (Except for these because they’re all screenshots and you can clearly see my website address)

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

Last, but certainly not least, I like to add in my thank you banner that you see below! 

Questions of the day: How do you update old blog posts? What are your most used bookmarks? You can see mine in all of the screenshots above!

How To Update Old Blog Posts // Being Leanna

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Spending Ban Update: What Worked and What Didn’t – January 12

Spending Ban Update: What Worked and What Didn't - January // Being Leanna

Hey ya’ll! It’s time for my first monthly spending ban update

If you didn’t read that post, or just need a recap, I’ve put myself on a spending ban because I want to buy a house! And soon. I’m participating in a grant and the money is available to me starting April 1st. I want to put down some of my own money on top of the grant money for the house. I have a set goal that I want to have in my savings so that I can put a certain amount down and still have a safety net. Because I want to have a set dollar amount in my savings by the end of March, I needed to put myself on a spending ban. 

My Monthly Spending Ban Update!

Set a dollar amount that’s doable.

You want to pick a goal that’s difficult but still attainable. My savings goal was an additional $400 per month. Normally I have a certain amount every paycheck that goes into savings and I wanted to put $400 on top of that. 

Go through your budget and decide what is a necessary expense and what isn’t.

Obviously bills are non-negotiable. I did end up getting a small deduction in my cell phone bill which was great. I wasn’t using nearly as much data as I was paying for so I changed my plan. $10 a month doesn’t sound like a lot but that’s $120 per year!

Set an allowance. 

You can’t just not spend any money for three months. I already set aside $40 from each of my paychecks to go into a vacation account and I’ve decided that for the next three months i’ll be allowing myself to use that as my allowance. If I need a new toothbrush, a dinner with a friend or just really need to go to happy hour I can use my allowance and not feel guilty. This ended up not working so well. I never ended up doing the allowance thing. I had some cash from Christmas that I used up and my brother gave me cash that he owed me so I used that as my allowance and never took a withdrawal from my account. 

Cash is king.

Keeping your allowance in cash helps you to realize just how much you’re spending. I always keep a credit card on hand for emergencies but I leave the debit card at home. Cash is king for sure. I really thought about the purchases I did make because I was watching my wallet empty. Below i’m going to lay out every. single. thing. I spent money on in January.

Keep the temptations away. 

Lots of stores have sales right after the new year. Unsubscribe from emails, uninstall any shopping apps on your phone and don’t clip any coupons! Just because something is on sale doesn’t mean you’re saving money. If you weren’t going to buy it in the first place you aren’t saving anything. Use a holiday gift card to shop if it’s an absolute must. I don’t want to go three months without new makeup or clothes but I know I’ve got plenty of both. My inbox has never looked nicer! I couldn’t give up my Ulta emails (I’ve got a gift card burning a hole in my pocket) but everything else went away. 

Eye that checking account. 

If you’re like me, you pay all of your bills online. To make things easier, add up what you need to have to pay your bills for the month and transfer the rest out into your savings. If you’re on a bi-weekly pay schedule figure out what bills get paid out of which check and transfer the extra to your savings accordingly. The less extra money you leave in your checking account the less likely you’ll be to spend it. If you can, setting up automatic transfers into your savings account will greatly help. I sort of did this, and sort of didn’t. I logged into my checking account online the day before each paycheck and transferred out the money I didn’t need. 

So, what did I buy?

On Amazon I bought Buffering by Hannah Hart ($3.99). It has been on my reading list and the price was too good to pass up. PicMonkey– ($33.00) I pay for a yearly subscription and it just happened to be up in January. Sunoco gas – $26.33. 1TB Harddrive ($57.23) I picked this for my mother for her birthday, she’s been needing one and I had gotten our home movies digitized for Christmas. DMV Vehicle Registration ($57.00) this only happens every 2 years and it just happened to occur during my spending ban. Groceries ($55.74) yes, I am aware at how lucky I am that I don’t have to pay for most of my food (thanks mom, i’m eternally grateful!). SiteGround Domain 1yr ($14.99) I recently switched hosts and had to pay for the domain. Phone charger ($28.34), mine finally died. It had had been holding on for dear life for months. Housing Class ($70.00) this was required by my grant program and was a one time expense. I bought Towels ($47.20) at Target. They were having a white sale and I have no towels for my new house. No excuses and I don’t feel guilty. Sunoco gas ($25.62). I went out to eat and had 2 beers and shared a pizza at Browns Brewery ($20.00). And finally, I went to an Ice Bar and got myself a beer ($7.00). 

What did I save?

I mentioned earlier that my goal for the month was to save $400. That’s an additional amount from what I normally put in the bank. I ended up depositing $383.11 extra into my savings account which I think is pretty awesome.

What did I learn?

Not to be so hard on myself when I spend money! Some of those expenses I listed above were a bummer (the phone charger, DMV and the housing class) but, they were all necessary expenses. Things are going to come up and it’s good to be prepared. I also learned that I can still have fun and not spend a lot of money! I still went out with friends and managed to have a great time. 

What are my February goals?

Same as January, save $400 on top of what I already put into savings. I’d like to to be able to put $200 extra onto my car bill for the month. Over President’s Day weekend i’ll be going on a mini vacation. I know i’ll be spending some money (I got my hotel for free using my credit card rewards!) so i’m going to try to not be too hard on myself. I do have a “vacation” fund that should cover me fully though. It’s also tax season! While I haven’t filed my taxes yet I know that if I get a refund I’ll be adding to my savings.

Do you guys have any plans for your tax return? I also really want to know if you’ve been on a spending ban before! Let me know in the comments!

Feeling generous? Give this guy a pin!

Spending Ban Update: What Worked and What Didn't - January // Being Leanna

 

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Cleaning Out My Pinterest Page 16

Cleaning out my Pinterest Page // Being LeannaHey everyone! 

I had a super great weekend. Sunday was my mom’s birthday! We celebrated by having family over to watch the Football games! Pizza, beer, and football are my three favorite Sunday things and this weekend was even better because: birthday cupcakes!

Saturday, I went to a 5 hour class all about the home buying process. I thought it was going to be incredibly boring but, I actually ended up learning a lot! Plus, I was basically given the okay to seriously start looking for a house come February *eeek* so, that was incredibly thrilling. To get myself even more excited for the possibility of getting a house I decided it was time to go through my Pinterest page. It was more than overdue for a clean out of everything that didn’t spark inspiration anymore. 

Pinterest Page Declutter

 

I’ve had a personal Pinterest page for years and years and when I created my blog page I just transferred everything over. Needless to say I’ve had pins on some of my boards for years. I’m sure that most of the links go nowhere now but as long as the image is still inspiring to me it’s going to stay. I recently created board images that all were the same and I am loving the look of it. What do you guys think, are you a fan of the cohesive Pinterst page or nah, too OCD? Let me know in the comments!

 

I have a board for just about every room in the house from the living room to the laundry room. I carefully went through each and every board and deleted the images I didn’t like anymore. It was surprising at how much my taste has matured over the years. Although I still love grey and turquoise together I don’t need everything in my home to be those colors. I highly suggest taking the time to go through your own Pinterest page. Get rid of what doesn’t inspire you anymore. After doing a “clean-out” I feel so organized! Now, if only I could finish the clean-out of my actual stuff. 

To be honest, Pinterest got boring for me for the past year or so. Now, i’m totally back into Pinterest and using it as a constant source of inspiration. I’ve begun actually using the home page again instead of just searching for a specific thing or randomly pinning from a bloggers website. I use Pinterest like it’s supposed to be used now! I hope that means i’ll get better and gaining blog traffic from my Pinterest Page. That would be awesome. Leave me a link to your Pinterest page so I can follow you!

Another thing i’m working on is creating Pinterest compatible images from my old blog posts. It’s a lot of work but I think it’ll really help. Vertical is better than horizontal for Pinterest and i’m finally doing something about it. I’ll be sharing how I update my old blog posts coming up shortly so you’ll have to follow my Facebook page so you’ll know when it’s live!

Question of the day: What are your obsessions from Pinterest lately?

ps: I cannot get a board widget to work for the life of me. Here’s hoping there aren’t 15 boards being published before I get a chance to edit this again :-]

 

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30 Before 30 11

30 Before 30 // Being LeannaWell, the time has come. I have been gathering this list together for some time and I figured what better time than my birthday to kick off my 30 before 30 list?

I’m turning 27 tomorrow (the 24th) and i’ll also be crossing off one of the items on my list! I’m hoping everything on here is pretty doable because i’m giving myself three years, and none of this is too crazy but we’ll see. Let me know if any of these are on your 30 before 30, or 40 before 40 or just your bucket list! I’d love to know.

30 before 30

Go to Iceland

Head out to the west coast

Do a vacation to just relax, I don’t always need to be exploring

Go ziplining

Go parasailing

Get paid for a blog post

Buy a house

Go to a blogging conference or beauty con, can’t decide

Get a promotion at work 

Design my own blog template

Read 50 books

Date

Say “yes” for a full day

Get a new car

Sell something I’ve made

Learn to let things go

Try a new workout routine, anything I haven’t tried before

Run a 5k, 10k if i’m feeling good

Go to a concert at SPAC or Tanglewood

Splurge on a super fancy meal/hotel/night out

Host a dinner party once I own my own house

See the northern lights

Throw a big 30th birthday party

Splurge on a nice clothing item or accessory

See a NY Giants game

Pay down my student loans as much as possible

Ride in a hot air balloon

Work on getting better at Italian

Adopt a cat once I get my own house

Learn to get better at communicating my feelings, i’m trying!

 

Thank You Banner

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