Ask Me Anything Answers + Survey Results
Thanks so all of you who took my 2021 KERF Survey! I have analyzed the results and have some fun answers to your questions.
Here is some of the survey data:
I’m not surprised by this at all, especially since the type of blog reader to take my survey is probably a long-time one who misses the “good old days!” On my list of 2021 goals is to write more personal, day-in-the-life style blog posts. Is it safe to say that the following circle has happened:
- 2007 – No one was writing about their daily lives online. Lifestyle blogs started to show up.
- 2010 – Everyone had a personal blog!
- 2014 – The bloggers that persevered started to head more in an evergreen, topical, Google, SEO direction and some of the personal connection was lost.
- 2018 – Instagram is queen of personal and blogs are boring unless you’re searching for something specific
- 2021 – KERF comes full circle and is the only personal blog out there
I joke….but I DO want to be more personal and less searchable because I am tired of fighting with Google and want to stand out for being a human!
So you want to see more day in the life posts! Noted. I also think it’s interesting that parenting and recipes got so many votes but neither was anywhere close to the top of the “favorite kind of post.”
I am super pumped to write about Home Neat Home!
I am less excited to write about Nutrition because I feel like I have such a wholistic view of nutrition these days (Eat real food. Eat everything in moderation. Move your body. Love your body. Enjoy life!) that I’m not terribly interested in things like vitamins and protein.
I think if you focus on eating real food those details are less important. But you guys clearly care about nutrition and healthy living so I will do my best to keep sharing on these topics, perhaps with a more personal spin.
I’m not surprised by this at all! I am the same way. Unless I am searching for something – then I want ZERO personality and the person to get.to.the.point. Haha.
As I said in the survey, we don’t have a podcast in the works. My sister asked me about one and I threw this question in. I told her if she did all the tech stuff I’d help host! Maybe it will be a 2022 plan : )
Also of note: many of the 10% of said they wouldn’t listen to our podcast write in the comments section that it was only because the only listened to True Crime or Comedy podcasts not because they didn’t love us <3
Hey 68% – did you know I send out a weekly PERSONAL email with some of my thoughts from the week, links to posts you might have missed, seasonal recipes, and sometimes special deals? Algorithm proof your blog reading >>>
Ask Me Anything: Your Answers
Within the survey you guys left so many great comments in the open ended section – thank you SO much for all of the sweet words!!!!
Here are some of the questions you asked!
Do you still enjoy blogging as much as you used to?
This is a good question! I absolutely still love blogging when I have a topic I’m excited about (like this post – it was fun!) But what I don’t love is the never-ending pressure to come up with content day after day, week after week.
Tina and I had a great convo about this on her podcast recently about the pros and cons of the old and new school approaches to blogging. Back in the day I published posts all the time but I never had to think about the future because I couldn’t pre-write my content. It was freeing and I lived more in the moment.
These days I have flexibility in my day, but I’m always worried about the next week or the next week. I need that flexibility because of the kids, but it means that I always have next week’s post hanging over me. I really need to figure out a way to solve this problem!
This maybe too personal. Please ignore if so. Thoughts about why people separate. You have been through it yourself so a clarity of why it can happen and may happen again for people.
I think the biggest reason, which is somewhat true for me, is that your lifestyles just don’t totally mesh. It’s not about what you like or don’t like but how do you want to live? What are you daily values? When these things fall out of alignment it makes sharing a life all the more difficult. Sometimes you can fix it and sometimes you can’t.
Thank you for being my go to blog for 12 years! Back in the day, I loved your three posts a day, today I love the variety. I feel like you’ve hit the perfect balance of nutrition, recipes, family life, products etc. You might have already posted about these things and I could have missed it – how does your squiggly line impact the choices you make when eating out (more like ordering takeout these days) and what’s your go to make for dinner meal when you just don’t feel like cooking? Thank you again for all of the incredible content you share and for standing up and expressing what you believe in – BLM and Go Biden/Harris!!! ????
Thank you! I think when I go out I’m focusing on two things: balance in my day and how I will feel at the end of the meal.
If I had a big salad for lunch, I’m more likely to skip one at dinner. If I had a huge lunch, I might get a salad for dinner. I’ve also learned with time to eat whatever I want but not get too full. That lesson came from overeating until I was full way too many times!
I also rarely overdrink these days. I think these habits have all been learned and built into my intuition over time rather than as conscious choices. It actually feels like the height of the squiggles in the line are smaller now. I need to write a post about this!
Long-time reader and love your content! I’d love a podcast and was also wondering if you’ve ever considered supplementing with a vlog or YouTube channel videos? I watch more of those these days and really love them. ???? Happy New Year!
Mazen has inspired me to put more content on YouTube – lol! I used to think a YouTube video had to be long and polished, but I’m realizing that some can be short and casual.
So my answer is maybe. I’m not sure that’s the best use of my time right now though! How many people actually sit and watch videos on YouTube? I need another survey for that because I sure don’t.
I’d be interested in a post about the pros and cons of a big age difference between your kids. If I have more, they’ll probably be about 5 years younger than my twins. Also, of course it makes sense that you rarely talk about Matt and his family anymore, but I was thinking about his mom’s cancer a few years back and hope she’s doing well these days.
Karen is a miracle and doing well! She has beat the odds. We talk from time to time on Voxer!
And I love our children’s age gap. I think the hardest part is that the parts of each age that are easy are challenging for the opposite age. Having each of them one-on-one is very easy but having both together is actually a bit more challenging because they are so different in their needs.
Days when we just have Birch are a dream, and when Birch is in school and Mazen is at home are also a dream! Both of them at the same time is stressful and loud – ha.
Maybe that’s the case for all families with more than one child? Overall though it’s been great and they do play together well some of the time.
Merging finances with a new spouse – I love your budget posts and am curious how you handled that with Thomas – maybe too nosy and personal but I think it would be interesting
I don’t remember all of the specifics of our timeline, but I think once we moved in together we merged all of our household expenses and became joint. Which really meant I added him to my checking account that became our joint account. He has his own checking account for “fun” things and I have my budget line in our budget (because I do the budgeting) for my personal spending so we each have our own fun money, which I think is important in any relationship!
Once we were married we did wills and joint investment accounts – the big stuff.
You seem to fit so much into your house, but it doesn’t appear to be that big, how many sq ft is it? Is that weird? If it’s weird you can ignore!
It’s 3500 sq feet. It’s a lot bigger in the back than the front. I think it’s too big on paper, but when I really think about all the spaces – we use and appreciate all of them. I do wish we could steal some square feet from our basement and add it to our main living area.
Not a complaint but constructive criticism: I fully understand that you need ads on your site but the banner ad along the bottom makes it very difficult to read your posts. It usually covers up part of a photo or etc so that you never can see the full photo. Very distracting and makes it less enjoyable. I truly don’t mean to complain just wanted to share my opinion.
I would love to remove all the ads – trust me. That’s why I’m hoping all of my side hustles take off and make plenty of money and then I can retire my ads ???? Would you pay into a membership site to have all the ads removed? I know some bloggers have done that – the sites are clean and the fans pay to run it instead of the advertisers. I feel like that would be a lot harder to do though!
Could you do a post about financial success with Beauty Counter? What level are you? Executive director? How many people are in your down line? How does the income stream work?
I’m a Director and I have about 30 women on my team. When I joined, I said I refused to have a team, but over time people have come to me and it’s been a really fun part! We are very collaborative and brainstorm ideas together – the community aspect makes it more fun.
Beautycounter is a direct sales company and we are paid commission on our sales so it’s just like being part of an affiliate program like Amazon, Rewardstyle, etc. but with much higher commission rates.
I know it’s very polarizing (quite a few of you commented in the survey that you wanted nothing to do with it), but I believe in the brand and the company and am grateful for the hundreds of you who love it too!
Kath, I really love your writing style, and yes, reading your posts offer a life shared experience somehow, like “going into your bestie’s home” as you wrote the other day. I’d like to hear an honest view on the job as a blogger, is it a full time dedication or how can you live your life with a camera in your hand at all times? How intrusive is it? How do you cope? Also, how do you cope in general having to post so often and be so present in social media? I find it anxiety provoking. Thanks and happy vaccine year!
This is a good question! I have no struggles with living online so long as I’m choosing what is published and what isn’t. I don’t think I could be on a reality TV show (except Survivor!)
I love that I have my life documented, but I do wonder what it would be like to be totally unplugged. (And I need to totally unplug on my vacations more!)
I am definitely addicted to my phone and technology, but I don’t think it’s impacting my life in a truly negative way for now. I am asking myself where my time is best spent though.
I like when any blogger is real. I want more, my kids are bugging me, my house is a mess, I tried this shirt from amazon and I look like a fool etc, etc. etc. Bothers me when everything is look at my perfect life and perfect pictures etc etc.
Have you ever had problems with Mazen as a toddler with regards to power struggles? My toddler-Boy is approximately a year older than B and he is getting so strong but also strong-willed- so much fighting now. I always like to read about other parents‘ perspectives.
OMG yes. Mazen is super strong-willed. Parenting him is not easy to this day, however, I have chosen not to elaborate on these issues for his privacy. I’ve always tried to draw the privacy line at sharing happy memories like a vacation vs. writing about struggles.
Curious if you plan on having more kids?
I do not plan on having any more, but that doesn’t mean I wouldn’t like more. Two feels very balanced to me though.
I’ve given away every single baby item we owned too, so having another would mean starting from scratch! If were younger (like 30) I would consider 3, but I’m getting old! I think Thomas would say yes right away if I really wanted a third.
What is your holy grail oatmeal? I’m an oatmeal lover too!
I don’t make it enough, but I LOVE classic whipped banana with cottage cheese stirred in!!
I really enjoy your organizational posts and am constantly in awe of your organization! I have some really specific things I struggle with organizationally that don’t always appear on your surveys. For example, old electronics like fitbit that still works (sell or give away?). Do you keep stuff from your childhood? I have these dolls from my grandmother and I don’t know what to do with them! Letter jackets, wedding dress, etc. Do you ever struggle with those types of things? Sentimental clutter I guess is what I might call it. Thanks so much Kath! I really enjoy your posts!
Definitely sell or give away the Fitbit. I tend to just give that kind of stuff away because I think selling is never worth the time for old tech.
I think we all struggle with sentimental clutter! Both of my wedding dresses are crumpled in the attic. I do have one childhood memory trunk. Take a photo of the dolls and give them to an antique store or school who will love them. I should probably give my wedding dresses to a theater department or a program who gives dresses to those in need. I think you’ll feel much lighter once the stuff is gone – just find a way to preserve the memory (photographs are the best!)
I’m a long time reader and I wanted you to know that your positive yet down to earth postings have kept me coming back year after year. Although I’m closer to your mom’s age than yours, I’ve learned so much from your blog. I wonder if you realize what a gift your voice has been to so many during these covid times? You are a positive force so needed in this crazy world. Keep doing you Kath! PS would LOVE a podcast!
Have more questions?
Leave them in the comments and maybe I’ll do another version of this sometime!