Yelly Writes

Looking around

I used to have a lot of time reading other blogs.  I miss it.  But as with everything, growing up has this really strange ways of changing one’s priorities.  I was quite the voracious blog reader and I used to visit blogs and put my two cents in (because I always thought one’s opinion was always welcome…I mean hello, why post a blog publicly and allow comments, right?).

Times have changed.  Sometimes I am saddened by the fact that I no longer seem to have the time to do the things I used to love doing.  But I did promise myself that I would make changes to my current behaviour patterns because I noticed that I wasn’t, really, very happy anymore.  I didn’t feel very creative anymore.  I became caught up in what I thought were more adult things to do (make dinner, clear up, laundry, ironing, vegetate on the sofa staring somnambulistically at the telly or whinge about how tired I was).  I think it affected my appetite for life…either in real life or online.  I was quite social.  I realise that now, I am making myself sound so old!

Anywho, the next Blogging 101 assignment was to visit the neighbours.  To read what people were writing, to get inspiration.  I laughed because the assignment gave me permission to be nosy!  And well, to look at other blogs so that my blog would know what it wanted to be when it grew up!

One of the blogs I came across (thank you Stylist!) was Sara Tasker’s blog Me & Orla.  I can’t remember how I came across the Stylist article.  She’s one of those amazingly creative people who have managed to quit the day job and do what she loves because of Instagram.

MeandOrlaThe blog layout is amazing in its simplicity.  It’s crisp and clean.  Because she takes amazing photos (hence her success on Instagram), the photos take priority.  I love “the voice” of her blog.  When you read the words, it’s like you’re included in this weirdly personal conversation.  I like it though.  I’ve also downloaded her pdf on her virtual Instagram retreat.  I love how some of the new internet creatives are so generous with their experiences.  Some people won’t share because they want to keep the niche they discovered on the great WWW their little secret monopoly.

If you have time, go and visit her website!

I might do this on a regular basis.  Look at blogs and write about them.  It’s good for content plus, it’s the perfect excuse to be nosy!  Not that I really need an excuse.

Yelly Writes

What’s in a name?

The next Blogging 101 assignment is to take control of your title and your tagline.

It always takes me ages to think of a blog title…mostly because I think my blog title should also be my blog address.  I must admit that it can be a frustrating exercise because when you think of a title that is completely you and you find out that someone else has thought about it and the domain name is no longer available, it can be frustrating and very disappointing.  I’ve always known that blog titles should be snappy, unique and memorable.  I am thankful, however, that my father named me the way he did.  My name makes for interesting blog title permutations!  Toda rabah Abba!  Oh and no, he didn’t name me Yelly or Welly! Ha!

A blog tagline is certainly as important as a snappy title.  I’ve gone from not having a blog tagline to having an über long one, to have a sort of acceptable one, to the one I have now.  I quite like the one I have now.  It focuses on the things that I am enjoying at the moment – food and photography, hence “bites and snapshots”.  My blog really is a place where I talk about the absolutely ordinary life that I lead and the things that make me smile (a great recipe, good food, a great read, a breathtaking photo – all of which don’t have to be mine!).

I’m happy that people are coming to visit the blog a wee bit more.  I’d love to be able to chat to people on the comments section of the blog though.  Please leave me a few words in the comments section!  I’d love to hear from you!

Letter Y

Yelly Writes

Who am I and why am I here?

I’m late to the Blogging 101 Party but I thought I’d still work on the assignments.  I need to redirect my blogging efforts and relight the blogging fire so to speak.  So in this case, this start is better late than never!


Those two questions are probably the scariest questions a blogger can face…well, to me it’s very scary.  Because sometimes, I forget to focus on the who and the why.

I remember starting a blog on another blog host site.  It was mostly a journal for me.  I place where I wrote about my rants, where I made fun of people who made grammatical mistakes, where I talked about me.  I’m not exactly sure that’s where I found my voice…if I’ve ever found it at all.  But I’m a lot more serious about this blog.  Because I think I’m much more selective about what I write and share online.  I find that as I grow older, I’m more sensitive to how what I put out in the universe affects other people – ripples in the water, and all that jazz.

So, why don’t I just write my thought down in a journal.  I don’t know is the answer to that question.  Sometimes it’s just knowing that you can send things out into cosmos and somewhere someone goes, “Oh I get that completely!”  I think it’s a deep-seated human need to fit in, to belong or just feel like we’re not so different – am not entirely sure that that’s a good reflection on my individuality because it speaks volumes about my need to conform to the mores of society!

I write because I want to talk.  I think I write because I want an audience.  But at the same time, I sort of want the imagined anonymity.  I mean I can hardly be anonymous if I use my photo as my Gravatar image, now can I?  But it’s the ease of putting stuff out there.  Of seeing if anyone finds what I have to say interesting.

I also want to talk about my food journey.  I love to cook and bake and I want to share what I’m learning.  Food for me isn’t just about the physical nourishment.  It also holds a lot of happy memories of family and friends gathered around a table.  Food is an intrinsic part of my growing up, so being so far away from my family, a way for me to reconnect and cheer myself up.

I also love to talk about Filipino food, which I think is a long-ignored Southeast Asian cuisine.  I thought if I wrote about Filipino food then people would see a new facet about the Philippines.  I want to get people talking about Filipino food.  I mean I know that Anthony Bourdain and Andrew Zimmern have both visited the Philippines and they rave about Filipino food.  So we have been featured on TV.  There are a lot of tutorial videos about how to cook Filipino food floating about on the internet but I want to add my voice to that.  I want people to know how good Filipino food really is.  We need to be as known as our other Southeast Asian neighbour’s cuisines:  Thai, Malaysian, Indonesian, Vietnamese.

I have no idea how the blog is going to help me turn my food passion into something that I do everyday.  If that is even possible (yes, I know it’s been done, but in this saturated market, can I carve out a little niche for me?).  But I’d like to find out what is out there, if there are opportunities.

I think the first goal is to connect to other people.  See blogs that I have a lot in common with, actually read them, learn from them.  Refine my writing style.  Find my voice.  Fall in love with blogging again (I used to blog everyday…sometimes even more than a blog post a day!).  Find out if this is something I want to take further of this will evolve into something else.  I want to hear from other people.  I want people to come to the blog and say things, react to what I have to say.  If it’s negative, please be gentle, but thoughts are welcome!

I’m excited again.  That’s a brilliant start.