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Well Look Who’s Finally Getting Her Act Together.

So I don’t know if you’ve noticed — maybe because you read this blog via email or Google Reader and you don’t actually visit the page — but I thought I should point out that I’ve made a few changes around here.

Some are purely aesthetic: What’s that? A pretty slider thingie with pictures of paella and skydiving?

While others work towards developing my brand: So what is that thing in your header? Is that a wine glass? Are wine glasses made out of paper? I don’t get it.

And still others serve purely for navigational functionality: So I know this one time in early 2011 you posted this recipe for these chicken salsa biscuit things. Where can I find that?

Well now, when we’re almost upon my three-year blogging anniversary — and no I don’t know exactly which day because I suck at remembering dates and am too lazy to look it up in the archives — I can finally start to answer some of those questions. I have finally brought (well, started to bring) order to the chaos that is

And this, I can tell you, has been no easy feat.

Making It Pretty:

So I’ve worked a little bit on trying to make the ol’ blog a little more pleasing to the eye. She’s got this pretty slider on the front page now with large pictures and links to some of some of my favorite past posts. I’ll try to remember to change it up when I can, but let’s face it — she’s probably going to look much the same by this time next year.

I’ve also added these fancy little sidebar buttons that, when clicked, will magically take you to some of my more popular categories.

Want to know more about places I’ve visited? Click this one:


Want to know what I really think of my granite countertops? Click this one:


Want to find out how to get three free pints of beer daily in Colorado? Click this one:


Basically, I’m just trying to make topics more accessible to you. That way, if you don’t happen to like what I’m talking about today (though I can’t imagine why that would ever happen), you can skip on over to one of these other categories.

Once I Branded Myself, I Couldn’t Sit Down For Like A Week:

Branding. Sigh. Those of you who’ve been around for a while know I’ve struggled time and again with figuring out a direction. Should I focus on travel? Food? House stuff? Relationships? And time and again, I hear the same thing — you like my frenetic chaos. You like my unpredictability. You like that one day you might open my page and get a peek inside my spice drawer and another day I’m outing my husband’s deepest thoughts.

And yet I’m consistently told that if I want my site to grow, I need to pick a focus.

So my focus, I think for now, will be on everything.

There are so many amazing things to see and do and learn in this world, and the best thing we can ever do for ourselves is fill the cup we’re given to the brim and enjoy.

Hence, the cup and world concept:


Yeah… a graphic designer, I am not.

Maybe one day I’ll be able to hire someone to help me develop this concept a bit further, since right now it’s kind of a mess.

Like me.

But basically what we have here is the world inside a cup. Even though the cup is clearly a wine glass, I call it a “paper cup” so it’s like the one in Danny’s Song. I wrote about that once. The basic gist is that Kenny Loggins is pretty much a genius.

I also emphasize the fact that it’s specifically a paper cup because if it just said “world” and “cup” it might make you think about soccer.

And that’s not what I’m going for at all.

Maybe I should just leave those words off all together and let you develop your own conclusions.

Or maybe I should stop trying to do conceptual work on the blog while I’m drinking.

How I’m (Kind Of) Organized:

Pouring back through all 587 posts of yore was like rubbing my head against an emotional cheese grater. I’ve had to re-live the depths of my depression, the anxiety of quitting various jobs, the anticipatory highs of renewed motivation to finally start working towards my goals, then followed by depression, again, when I failed to make anything happen.

Sprinkled in were poorly expressed tales of travel, horribly lit photos of pork chops with stuffing, and self-indulgent rants befitting someone desperately trying to become a writer.

I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to hit “delete” and pretend certain posts never existed at all.

But then, I realized, that wouldn’t be fair. It wouldn’t be fair to me or to you, because Domestiphobia has been the window on my little journey of self discovery. The poorly written and embarrassing posts are just blackheads without any concealer. And, look. I figure if you can stick with me through my awkward pimply teenage years, maybe you’ll stick with me through anything.


Once my brain resembled a fluffy pile of shredded — mostly gourmet — cheeses, it was time to sort.

The exceptionally tasty stuff — like the basic chèvre and the gouda and the parm — went here:


If you click on “Recipes” you’ll see — guess what — a selection of all of the recipes I’ve shared to-date.


If you click on “Food Stories” you’re going to get the smattering of restaurant reviews, ideas for entertaining, and semi-erotic photos of a husbandy hunk of man meat making cheesecake.


Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

The more exotic stuff — the marbled green Derby Sage and versatile Charouse and purpley Drunken Goat — would be here:


Click “Travel by Location” to see a list of places I’ve traveled that I’ve covered on this blog (I still need to add a few), and click “Adventures” to see any posts from any location that I would categorize as an adventure. The “Tips & Musings” category pretty much covers anything else travel-related.

The “Dwell” menu covers the hearty stuff — the sharp Cheddar and the beer cheeses and some good old-fashioned Monterrey Jack, along with my smattering of house-related topics:


Want to see a comprehensive list of projects? Click — you guessed it — “Projects.” Check out “Our House” for posts categorized by room. You should probably skip “Fails” all together since no one wants to re-live those, and I’m thinking “Garden” and “Decor” are pretty self-explanatory.


And finally, I’m not going to lie — the “Life” category still needs work. As of right now, it’s pretty much the slush pile for processed Velveeta and shiny Kraft singles — random posts I likely wrote while feeling extra introspective or quite possibly drunk. Digging through these is so emotionally draining that it’s taking me a bit longer than the others. At some point I’m hoping to run across one of my own posts about procrastinating, and then I can read about myself procrastinating while I’m procrastinating.

And I’m pretty sure that’s how black holes are formed.

But I’m leaving them all there because all of it — the inspirational stuff, the failing stuff, and even the stuff that makes me wonder what the hell I was thinking when I spewed that written vomit out into the internet — is just me.

And here you are, still sticking around after all of the good and all of the bad.

We’re practically married.

And you should be happy I didn’t make you sign a pre-nup because now, finally, after all of this work and all of this time and all of this angst, we have something to celebrate.

It’s official, kids.

I’m a published writer.


That’s a local magazine with my picture on the cover.

Well. Not my picture, obviously, but a picture I took.


And inside there’s an article with my name and my words and I’m pretty sure, when I picked up eleventy-thousand copies at my local wine store (how appropriate), I might have been crying a little.

And the clerks probably thought I was a lunatic.


And if they dug through the as-yet-uncategorized bowels of Domestiphobia, they would probably discover their suspicions are well-founded.

But you know what?

I don’t care.

Because out there, in the world, someone put my name on a page.


And that’s pretty damn cool.


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you are so awesome. That is all.


Aw, THANK YOU! Finally. Some validation. :)

Maria N Corrales

Yay! I love it! What a great job. It’s so beautifully organized.


Thank you!! Still needs some work, but I feel like progress has finally been made. :)

RHome410 @ Friday is Pizza, Monday is Soup

VERY cool! Congratulations on the published article and front page photo-that’s-not-you-but-by-you!

I have to admit that I’d noticed, and loved, the new slidey thing, and have even stopped to watch all the pics go through… but I missed the world in the paper cup and all of your amazing, new organization!! What a lot of work that must’ve been, but it really kicks your blog up a few notches. (You may be helping confirm my suspicion that blogging may be one of the areas where I don’t need to spread my creativity… That if I’m going to do it quarter-assed that maybe I should take that time and energy, use part of it to read your blog and the rest for something else!) I also admit I hated the little glimpses of your posts instead of having them fully on the front page at first, but I’m adapting. Fantastic job.


Thank you!!

And especially thank you for your honest assessment of the blog. I actually went back-and-forth for a LONG time about showing partial posts, but in the end I decided it was good for newcomers to get a glimpse of the latest few at a glance, mainly because my topics are so diverse. I don’t want them to read a post about bathroom renovations and then think my entire blog is about home renovations. BUT I did decide, once and for all, that people reading my posts via Google Reader or email will always be able to read the post in its entirety without having to click to get to the blog. I realized I don’t like it when other bloggers do that, so I’m not going to do it. :)

As far as YOUR blog goes, I think you have to decide — do you want to grow it and make money from it, or do you want to do it as a hobby? I think once you settle that in your own mind, it will be less of an issue. If you decide to make it a hobby so friends and strangers can keep up with your family, you won’t have to feel guilty when you don’t blog — but if you decide to make it a potential income-generator, you won’t have to feel guilty when you do. ;)


For what it’s worth, I hope you keep blogging. I like peeking in on your life! :) (In a totally non-creepy way.)

patti tobia

Great job Katie! Love it…. and congrats on being published! You are on your way….


Thanks, Patti!! I think my new luggage tag might be my good luck charm. ;)


I am so impressed, there simply are NO words!!!!!! YOU KICK ASS GIRL!


Coming from someone who kicks quite a bit of ass herself, that means a LOT! Thank you, Andi!!


Very impressive changes and congrats on being officially published, I been following you for a while and I think your randomness combined with your natural writting talent is part of the charm of your blog that’s just my opinion though


Well I love your opinion! Ha! I know you’ve been around a long time, and I hope you know how much I appreciate it!


We’ll stick with you through anything, Katie, because we love you! You’ve done a wonderful and very detailed job on organizing your blog. Very easy to navigate and find the fun things you’ve done and written about. Good job!


Aw, thank you!! I’m glad people are getting use out of the organizing. Now I just have to finish it… ;)


Love the “improvements” I need to do more tweaks but haven’t found the time or money to do more!


Well mine have all been free so far – just organization! I do have a friend who does branding/design though, and while she doesn’t do websites, maybe I can trade her some photography for her design business for a graphic logo or something to hide my rudimentary photoshop abilities. :)


Excellent idea to do some bartering. I have zero Photoshop skills except to crop and resize images – I want to take a class so I can be dangerous!

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