When I started All Things Spliced, I did so for me, and for Baby Lighty. I never expected it to ‘take off’ in its own little way as it has, nor be as well received as it has been. Ok, so I’m not making my millions yet, but there have been some little highlights here and there, and the best part is knowing that you lovely lot seem to be enjoying what I’m writing. It feels like I’ve got a small but merry little band of regular readers, and I’ve made new friends within the blogging community, both of which I’m completely grateful for.
If you’re part of the aforementioned blogging community, you’ll be familiar with the term ‘self hosted’. That mythical state of bloggy being, the holy grail of the blog world, or at least that’s how it feels to a relative newbie. When everyone else was talking about going self hosted, it initially bypassed me a bit. Why did I need to do this when I was quite happy with what I had, thank you?! But then the blog started to grow…and I wanted to do things with it that I simply wasn’t able to do whilst sitting on the free WordPress domain.
And so my mind got to thinking…perhaps I ought to start thinking about this self hosted thing… The only problem with this, however, was that Mrs Lighty has the technological brain capacity of a caterpillar, and I literally didn’t have a clue where to begin.
Most bloggers, once self hosted, will write a very serious, very logical explanation as to the process of going self hosted. Mrs Lighty isn’t most bloggers. Quite frankly I couldn’t write a logical explanation as to how I’ve ended up as allthingsspliced.co.uk if I tried! And so here is Mrs Lighty’s guide to going self hosted:
How to go Self Hosted for Dummies:
1. Umm and ahh over whether you want to go self hosted for aaaages. Seriously, like almost a year of “do I or don’t I?”
2. Realise that even if you do want to go self hosted, you don’t have the foggiest clue where to begin. What does self hosted even mean?!
4. Know that you really must be going on about it all the time when even Mr Lighty takes note and offers to pay for it as your birthday present!5. Speak to your potential hosts over the phone. Still don’t have a clue what you’re doing. Umm and aah some more.
6. Then one day, after nearly a year of umming and aahing, suddenly just take the plunge! Buy your domain name (www.allthingsspliced.co.uk is miiiiiine!!!!) and a hosting package, hurrah!
7. Give your hosts access to your WordPress.com site.
8. Speak to Abi from Something About Baby some more, and realise you haven’t backed up your old blog!! Aaaaargh, quickly turn on the laptop and export the back up file.
9. Your hosts tell you that they can’t be sure that your drafts will back up, so you quickly back those up the only way you know how: by copying and pasting into a Word document (technical!!). Realise that you actually have a few months’ worth of near-ready-to-go posts, bonus!
10. Your hosts migrate your site. For most bloggers this takes a couple of days. For you this takes about 3 minutes, because, let’s face it, between Baby Lighty, working and copywriting commitments, you only post about once a week. Bad blogger!
11. Get sent a list of instructions from your host company that may as well be written in Dutch for all you understand them. Feel your eyes glaze over as you read them. Ask Mr Lighty for help.
12. Make the relevant change to the host file and restart your laptop as requested. Your laptop then takes FORTY-FIVE MINUTES to update! Fear you may have broken your laptop, especially as no other blogger that you speak to seems to have gone through this step when you message them to ask. Messages require much use of the ‘sobbing / my-life-is-over’ emoji.13. Eventually get laptop loaded again (phew!!). After even more consultation with your fellow bloggers and your hosts, it appears that most of the work has been done for you. Clearly your hosts recognised that they were dealing with a wally that would need lots of help early on in the whole process.
14. Now for the fun bit! Supposedly… Fiddle with the look of your blog. Try approximately 20 themes before choosing one that’s not dissimilar to the one you had before you started this whole stressful process. Mutter to yourself frequently “why can’t I get this bloody plugin to work?!” and “I wish I knew more about CSS!” (seriously! When did you ever think you’d hear Mrs Lighty say that?!).
15. Eventually get the blog into some workable form. Feel really quite proud that you – that person that can barely work the DVD player – has only gone and set up a whole bloomin’ website!! Yes it definitely needs some work, but it’s all mine!
And that’s where we are today, folks. I’m sure there will be lots of tinkering with the site along the way, but I hope you lovely lot will come along for the ride!
On a serious note, I’d like to say thank you to all of the people that have helped me to achieve this dream, this little corner of the Internet that’s all mine, particularly the bloggers mentioned above, and if you do want some serious and very helpful articles on how to go self hosted, I highly recommend these:
Something About Baby: How to go Self Hosted – From WordPress.com to WordPress.org
Island Living 365: Going Self-Hosted with my Blog
Midwife and Life: Going Self Hosted from WordPress.com to WordPress.org