Cooperatize Blogger’s Corner – Diane Roark

This week we get a “two-for-one” as Diane Roark brings us two excellent blogs.

 

My name is Diane Roark. I blog about quick and easy recipes at Recipes For Our Daily Bread and family fun travel adventures at Our American Travels.

 

RECIPES FOR OUR DAILY BREAD

 

My goal with Recipes For Our Daily Bread is to help you make DELICIOUS QUICK AND EASY RECIPES.  Recipes your whole family will love including appetizers, salads, main dish/entrees and desserts.  As a mom of five kids, I have little time to spend in the kitchen.  Having delicious quick and easy recipes allows me more time to spend with the people I love.  Because I am from the South, you will find Southern Recipes for holidays too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

OUR AMERICAN TRAVELS

 

 

Our American Travels is a travel blog where I blog about our family fun adventures in America.  Our American Travels includes restaurant reviews, theme parks, cruises, and many other fantastic places we have visited. Why America?  I love America and have so many places yet to see.

 

 

Where am I from?

 

My name is Diane Roark.  I was born and raised in Alabama.  I have lived all over the South including Tennessee, Louisiana, and Georgia and my current home is in Little Rock, Arkansas.

 

 

My Family

 

My husband and I have been married since August 1984.  We have five children between the ages of 14 and 24.  Our twin boys are named Casey and Caleb.  You will hear me talk about Caleb often.  He was born with a brain bleed and has had seventeen brain surgeries.  Caleb has cerebral palsy, seizures, processing problems and rarely speaks.  Our youngest two children were adopted from Eastern Europe at the ages four and seven years old.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why I created my blogs?

 

 

Recipes For Our Daily Bread was started November 2011, and Our American Travels began November 2015. Five years ago when starting Recipes For Our Daily Bread, I was merely looking for a way to organize and share my recipes.  I wanted an easy way to pass down my recipes to my kids plus give my recipes to family and friends who were always asking for a recipe.

 

Our American Travels was created four years after Recipes for our Daily Bread.  I was sharing many restaurant reviews on Recipes for our Daily Bread.  I felt like I had travel information that was hard to find and I needed a separate travel blog.

 

 

 

 

When did I decide to be a business blogger?

 

 

About three years into blogging, I was getting a decent amount of traffic.  I had saved enough money from ads on my blog to have my blog redesigned.  I upgraded from the free WordPress.  It was after seeing the site redesign I realized how much more I could do with my blog. I knew blogging was going to be my full-time job.  I was doing what I loved to do, and I saw the potential for making money.  A win-win situation.

 

 

My passion for blogging has always been fueled by my love for cooking and traveling. Delicious food brings families and friends together.  It simply brings smiles to faces.

 

 

My favorite posts on Recipes for our Daily Bread besides writing about my faith and family are my easy dessert recipes.  I have a huge sweet tooth and love desserts.  They are as fun to write about as they are to make and eat.

 

 

My favorite posts on Our American Travels seem always to be about the latest place we explored as a family.  Currently, it is all my Alaska cruise posts.  It is going to be hard to beat the best vacation ever, Alaska.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blogs and Publications that Inspire Me

 

 

I have always admired, followed and learned a lot from successful bloggers.  Some of my favorite bloggers include Six Sisters Stuff, Love Bakes Good Cakes, Princess Pinky Girl, Confessions of A Mommyaholic and The Melrose Family.

Publications I read include Southern Living and The GuidePost.

 

 

What you may not know…

 

 

I have had many challenges since starting my blogs.  These problems range from being hacked, learning about SEO, food photography, conflicts with plugins and more.  Over the past five years, I have had several times I wanted to quit blogging.  I would say my biggest challenge is always my blog speed.  I am always researching and finding things to do to speed my site up.

 

Social media has a huge influence on the way I write my blog posts, especially with pictures.  Each social media platform has a particular size of the picture that works best.  For a food and travel blog that has so many pictures, it can take a while to size everything appropriate for the desired social media.  The average age of my followers is completely different on each social media.  Having a large age range makes it even more challenging to write a post.

 

 

My favorite social media has always been Pinterest.  It by far drives the most traffic to both of my sites.

 

My advice for aspiring bloggers is to do your homework before starting a blog. Learn…

 

  1. To Take pictures including lighting and sizing the image for each social media.
  2. About SEO
  3. How each Social Media works and shares your post on all of them.
  4. It would be so helpful to learn basic programming.
  5. Attend a blogging conference.

 

Blogging requires an enormous amount of time if you are going to make money.  If you are thinking about being a business blogger (make money blogging), do not give up.  Success comes with lots of hard work and overcoming tremendous challenges.

 

 

 

Around the Corner

 

 

Patience in overcoming adversity is a great message that resonates with me far beyond my professional life. We will all inevitably face challenges. As my football coach once told me, “It is not a question of whether or not you are going to get knocked down. It is a matter of when you get knocked down, how will you get back up.”

 

 

Interestingly, this is the second time we have heard Six Sisters Stuff as being one of our featured blogger’s favorites to follow. With the rising popularity of video and pictures in our social media channels, it is no wonder that a medium like Pintrest is on the rise across all blogging verticals.

 

 

Want to be featured on the next Blogger’s Corner? Join the Cooperatize community for free through this link to get noticed by us and the brands with whom we collaborate. You will also get opportunities to write sponsored content and grow your own personal brand!

 

 

By the way, if you are one of those “creative types” then submit a logo for Blogger’s Corner to use as a featured image. You will win our undying love and admiration as well as mentions through all our social media channels that highlight your blog. We hope to share a new logo each week. Submissions can be sent to tony@cooperatize.com. Thank you!