First, I must say that what I do each day, writing to all of you, is certainly and unequivocally a labor of love.

I had no way of knowing 13 years ago that my little space on the internet would actually reach others. But I think if I’d known, I might have been frightened away.

I’m an introvert and socially somewhat shy, so writing is my way of conveying who I am and what I hold dear. Words without noise.

You’ve Been With Me:

You’ve been with me as I got divorced and moved to another state. The first few years after that were shaky for me emotionally and financially.

You were with me when I moved to the apartment with the large fenced patio. Where I grew my garden and added to it year after year. A total of eight years.

Then you were with me again when, in late January 2022, I moved here.

You cheered me on and watched as I began to talk to people around me. Something that was hard for me before.

I didn’t like coming out of my shell. Because I feared failure and rejection after years of turning my feelings inward.

Ivy sleeping on the couch. She is my house mate and my baby and I love her so much.

You were with me when first I lost Abi, and then Charlie. Then Gracie just a few months ago. I had your friendship and emotional support to fall back on through it all.

Through the grief and the tears, remotely you held my hand as if saying: “You’re going to be all right.”

And so we remotely sit down together and share our thoughts. I begin and you all start to chime on. Sometimes you visit with one another and I love seeing that transpire.

You can’t possibly know what all of you mean to me. I’m so grateful for those years when I needed you and you were there. You give back to me every single day.

SEO Practices That Are Part Of Blogging:

When I wrote about all I do these days after I write my daily post, it is not a hard and fast rule.

No one makes me do it. I don’t have a gun pointed at my head.

But I like to learn. And then implement strategies I’m reading about. Like how to find people with your digital content and connect with them.

I’m much better at connecting with people online than I am in real life.

In A Labor Of Love, I show a photo of one of the hosta plants I planted near the big rock in my apartment's yard.

Money is important, yes. At times in the past, I’ve kind of felt like I need to apologize for monetizing this blog. For actually seeking to make money with it.

Blogging is now a business for many and some big bloggers are making a small fortune.

Good fortune is not always money though. It’s having people be there for you and with you.

Blogging Is Now A Business For Many:

I have never sought to get rich by blogging. It is a business because I pay taxes on the income I make. But I never wanted to grow as robustly as many have. I just wanted to make a living.

The blogging income helped me move here to this beautiful place in January. It helps me acquire plants and decor to share what I hope is an inspiration for you.

When I see something beautiful through the lens of my camera, I want you to see it too. Photography is a gift that comes along with blogging.

I love to capture moments and then share them.

My settee at the edge of the yard, inviting those walking down the sidewalk to sit down. I sit here and chat with neighbors.

I like to keep learning new content writing skills and ways to get it out there to the masses. There are many proficient people who come up with new strategies for building a business like this.

I don’t have their skills, but I want to learn from them. And I never want to stop learning.

My little business is small but very valuable to me in so many ways that don’t include income.

As A Blog Grows:

And as your business grows, you grow along with it.

This blog is much more than a business to me. I get the added benefit of knowing all of you and connecting to the outside world.

So after all this verbiage, this blog is a labor of love and your reading it is the icing on the cake.

Music Of The Day:

I sit down with my coffee and have music on in the background.

Today it is a new CD I ordered. Brian Crane’s “Life Is…” I’m adding his work to my CD collection.

Brian Crain's piano solo album titled "Life Is..."

You can listen to some of his music on YouTube. I chose one at random if you want to sample his work.

Signing off for today.

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40 Comments

  1. Brenda, I came across your blog several years back when I was googling something, I can’t remember what it was now. I am so glad I found Cozy Little House. Because of your blog I have learned to love where I rent and I love reading your posts and seeing your beautiful pictures. Thank you for all you share and keeping it real.

  2. Great post, Brenda. We bloggers know how much work goes into creating a post, and a labor of love is the best way to describe it. I enjoy your blog for your beautiful writing, great photos, but mostly an honesty about who you are that makes it feel like I’m visiting with a friend. Thank you for sharing your heart and your stories through your blog.

  3. I’m just so glad that you enjoy sharing your life with us. I know, for myself, that your simple way of living and approaching life is calming to me as I spend time with your blog. I used to read a good number of blogs daily but as time went by I came to the conclusion that most of them were rather superficial — and it shows. Now I’m down to you and three others that I enjoy and keep on my list.

    It’s been so nice to see you venture out into “your world” at your new place and get to know and interact with your neighbors. You’ve come a long way and I’m sure it’s very gratifying to you as well. And I’m so glad you’ve found a place you love.

  4. Hi Brenda. What a beautiful post! I love reading your entries each day. Your writing flows so easily and is a pleasure to read.
    When I first started my blog and reached out to you, you were so kind and encouraging. I haven’t forgotten. You told me to keep writing and to try to be consistent. I haven’t been. 🙁
    Like you, I’m an introvert (and a bit insecure). I find it hard to put myself “out there”.
    But this post spoke to me. And for that, I thank you! I feel newly encouraged to break out of my comfort zone and start sharing my story.
    I love your blog and it’s honesty. Every (online) visit feels like a visit with a friend. You have a very special gift, my friend. Thank you for sharing it with all of us.

    1. I just went to read your blog too, Donna…I do hope you will continue…you also are a very good writer and very enjoyable to read!! And what is not to love about where you live, indeed you found a great place…and then to be near your parents…how lovely!! Thanks for sharing here that you have this blog…lovely blogs are in short supply in my view…so keep writing!!

  5. Brenda, I have followed your blog off and on since before your divorce in TX.
    I am so proud of all that you have accomplished since then, with your blog AND you life!! As they used to say “Keep on, keeping on!”
    On a side note….. is there a way for us to buy digital copies of your photography? I see many people selling their digital photos on Etsy but why would you need to use Etsy if we can buy them straight from your blog? Would that be possible?
    I would like to buy high resolution photos of some of your nature pics (birds, trees, flowers….. some in shadows). Let us know.
    Thanks for being you!!
    Vicki Mason

    1. I size my photos down to 1200 x 1800 usually. If that’s big enough to work with, take the photos you want and enlarge them. I have enlarged them to at least 8 x 10 myself, and then used mats around them. I sent them to I believe it was Walgreens way back when (many more choices now). My photos are free to you. I’ve never put my watermark on them as many bloggers do. I am not an artist. I simply take photos and they’re free to you. Right click on photo and save to a file.

  6. Brenda, I love coming here and reading your shared words and experiences. I look forward to it daily as a sort of balm for myself, I can’t wait to hear what you are up to.
    So, thank you for being here. I’d welcome a “tip jar” of sorts that I see on some bloggers pages, I love your blog so much I’d welcome helping you out any bit I could.
    Hugs, Emie
    (PS, I’m and RN and worked for a podiatrist for almost 2 decades, including assisting with surgeries. I read the qualifications of your new doctor and find them to be at a higher level of a *regular* podiatrist, ie: he’s had a LOT of extra training in ankle surgeries)

    1. Oh, I make enough money. I have blogging income, which has now pretty much exceeded what I get in social security for the most part. So I’m quite comfortable for my needs and desires. I’m never going to be a millionaire and if I was, I’d be donating most of it to social causes for homeless people and animals, etc. I appreciate the thought. The extra things I do to get the blog out there are standard practice now. And I love learning new things.
      I’m so glad you read about the podiatrist. I don’t know much about medicine and was hoping someone with experience and knowledge would chime in. Thank you!

  7. Brenda, you are a kind and humble person. That makes it easy for others to respond to you, the way you so eloquently described. I just love the simple peace of the way you live, delighting in the beauty of nature, the companionship of pets, and the arrangement of color and pattern in your “cozy little houses.”

    1. I don’t have lofty dreams; never have. I was raised out in the country without transportation and we ate what we grew. So I’ve always known how to live simply. And why not take advantage of all the free things we have: nature has never sent anyone a bill.

  8. I’m sure your wonderful writing abilities have made blogging much easier for you. I am often mesmerized when you write and wish it would go on and on. I was just driving home from an appt and heard the news of the Tulsa shooting. And my mind raced to wonder where you were today appt wise. I’m hoping you are home safe and sound. This has just got to stop.

    1. I tend to not read about local news, so I missed it. I’ll look it up. The daily newspaper here is about $70 a month now. My next-door neighbor gets it. But I wouldn’t find the time to read enough of it to pay that much. I’d rather get my info free on the internet. Thanks for telling me! Nothing happened here with this complex. I feel very safe here.

  9. I have read your blog daily for many years. It is soothing & ends my day. We have similar interests so I like see you & your plants grow & change. Keep writing & earn some $$$.

    1. I earn more and more the longer I blog. And I have learned to begin to go back and rework old posts to hopefully recycle them on Google. Keywords and all that SEO stuff. I actually enjoy doing it because it keeps my mind active to implement new things all the time. Of course, I post every day, and when I don’t, my income goes down because I don’t do recipes or crafts that are often searched for over and over again. Some bloggers seldom post and still make money. But I’m quite pleased with where I am.

  10. Brenda thank you for what you do for each of us. I so enjoy reading about your daily life and I’m so glad we are friends!!!!

  11. What a wonderful post! It does seem as if we’re a community here. When I go online, I look for your posts right away, knowing we’re about an hour different in time zones. I check out Cozy Little House after lunch every day. Your expression of affection carries through your words and we feel it right back.
    I look forward to the posts and say to myself -“Wonder how Brenda’s doing today? And her Ivy kitty?”

    Thank you, love this blog, love the friendship.
    Mary from PA

  12. This is the kind of post I appreciate the most, Brenda…and it is full of encouragement. That even bad hard days in life can end up in some very nice places (like your current apt with friends there already)!! Seems to me you have made great strides in getting involved there with folks!! We need to know that at least for some, like yourself, a move can bring very good things!! Seems we here are kind of still in adjusting mode. Some things are good here…some not so much. Thanks for sharing your life (I too have been a reader since Texas)!!

  13. Brenda, you have a wonderful gift, where you are able to put the words together so beautifully to share your thoughts, wonderful flower and patio photos, your feelings with your sweet pets, your family, your cozy home, everything. We are all blessed to have a blog (yours) to read and to enjoy. We thank you for that, and we wait to “see” you every day. Hugs from Wisconsin, where summer finally arrived!

  14. Such a lovely and well written post! I so look forward to your daily update, on your day, your fur baby , beautiful gardens and pictures. I cried through Abi, Charlie and Gracie, as I also have fur babies, and know what you have been through with their loss.
    You have such a well written blog, and as such you are able to write about your feelings and how the current state of the world affects you. Don’t change, you have to put in the ads to support yourself and to be able to do what you love.
    Love your blog, I enjoy you immensely, never change.

    1. Yes Brenda, as Liana said, you have a well written blog. You speak from the heart and that is why your followers love you so much! Please don’t change a thing about your blog or yourself! You mean so much to all of us!

  15. You do al lot for us too. We feel less alone in our emotions and it is nice to know others feel the same types of angst that we do. I really appreciate you Brenda and feel like I have a friend in Tulsa. Thank you.

  16. Beautifully written, Brenda. Thank you so much for sharing your soul.
    Recently I realized why I’ve enjoyed your blog so much and I connected with you right from the start – we both carry a very heavy “box”.
    Enjoy your new CD. It’s not just music. It’s music that soothes the soul.
    Happy Day to you!

  17. What a lovely post of friendship, trust and honesty. Like I said yesterday in my comments, you don’t sugar coat or fluff your posts like some home dec blogs I have followed and then decide if it’s way too much “selling “ and wanting me to go to Amazon so I just give up on those. I prefer the approach of your blog writing which shows using what you have and making do and buying reasonable price items. Thank you for bringing your life to us and allowing us to bring ours to you too!

  18. I’m happy to hear you’re enjoying your new home and putting your personal stamp on the place.. I miss our conversations but I know life gets busy.
    best wishes
    Sonny

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