The New Sparkle

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Happy Halloween no more. I seriously can't believe that was my last post. It wasn't my choice. Well, it kinda was. I'm here to tell you I'M NOT DEAD and SPARKLES BY ASHLEE IS NOT DEAD either! In fact, my gosh, this is only the beginning of this new chapter in my blog's life.

Right now, I'm at my Grandpa and Grandma's curled up in my pajamas, eating lasagna as my fingers literally fly. I mean OH! MY! GOSH! I have missed this blog so stinking much! No posts in November OR December! I MISSED CHRISTMAS!!! 

Okay. I need to get a grip. Let me take a bite of my lasagna real quick. And a sip of chocolate milk.

Alrighty. I need to pull up my Google Doc and see what I wanted this post to say. There's no way I could write this post in my head, there's too much to say. 

WELCOME BACK! That's what I should've said first, but better late than never.

This is seriously me right now. #posessedblogger

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So do you see my new blog? It is totally different. It is so much BETTER! Anyhow, I was gone for 2 months because I was working on that. My new blog. Everything is different. I have my OWN domain. Everything is so much cleaner and more organized. And my friends, this did not come overnight. 2 MONTHS! I MISSED CHRISTMAS FOR THIS! I know I already said that. But, Christmas, really? Don't worry, I have nothing better to do than bomb your news feed with catch up posts.

I certainly promise that will happen. Like, I have a mile long google doc I am looking at right now of posts I need to write. Not to mention how I can't just freeze time, so even more posts will get added. But that's getting off topic. I was gone 2 months because I was getting sick of Blogger and my dumb designs.*

*Maybe they weren't dumb, but I couldn't find anything that suited me. And, I was turning into that throw-25-fonts-on-your-blog girl and make it look like junk. Never a good habit.

HOLY MOLY! HAPPY 2015! I MISSED THAT TOO!

I have ADHD. I know. Wait, no. No I don't. No. My readers will not think I have ADHD.

Two months. I was gone for a very long time as you can see. Well, one day I am just sitting in my chair, and I'm bookmarking every possible blog design I like. I'm bored. I'm desperate. I NEED a new design NOW. Remember how I used to want a website so bad, and one of the platforms I was gonna use was Squarespace? Maybe I didn't mention that. Anyway, I have always LOVED Squarespace. Squarespace is my best friend. I have memories of daydreaming about the site I was gonna make for myself with Squarespace. I LOVE Squarespace! Their platform, customer care, settings. IloveitIloveitIloveitIloveitIloveitIloveitIloveit. I was browsing under the section "Bloggers" and I saw the cutest design. Ever. I made a list of all the things Squarespace HAD to have before I ever bought anything. Then I activated my free trial and began designing. The list I'm sure had over fifty things.

I contacted Customer Care fifty times as well, I think, and they were always so amazingly nice. Once I finally got this lookin' fab, I had to raise the money. Squarespace is a yearly fee and it's not cheap, but it's SO worth it. Unfortunately, cheaper would have been better; but my amazingly awesome gorgeous parents said they'd help cover the fee. BUT. BUT. The fee is so big, I had trouble raising my half even. Then with my other gorgeous relatives's help, I raised enough by Christmas. Money. Design. Check. But now, I need their permission to even do a site because I got paranoid, read their terms, and the part about being eighteen or older for the account settings freaked me out. The thing is, there are actors that are under eighteen, and they need websites. I figured what the heck, I better get permission. A year later I finally got this letter put together with my mom, and she emailed them and THEY SAID I COULD DO IT. They are just so nice. I love them. I don't a regret a penny spent on this company. 

Also, of course, once I bought everything, twenty things to do got added to my list. I've worked my butt off to get it done, but I don't regret any time put into this. I love it.

While we're on the topic of design, I could tell you how that came to be. Yes, yes, why not. I love reading how designs come together.

I wanted to use my same colors from the last blog, but I wanted a change of fonts. I loved Raleway, which is the font you're reading. I needed a new script font.

I don't know why I picked this template, but I love it and glad I did. All of Squarespace's templates are designed ahead of time, and then you can make customizations. So over Blogger's codes. Not that I didn't insert any. The slow link hover- that's a code. The heart by the post title - code. The line under the post title - another code. I think my record is only ten codes on here. On Blogger, I had about fifty.

My header image is that little circle of my beautiful feet. Why I chose that image, I don't know. Maybe because my flip flops were pink and my shorts were sparkly. Just deal with it, okay? And you seriously love those sparkle icons by my pages, right?! Yes, yes you do and you know it. That's about it to design, and then I just did some sidebar gadgets. I so love my calendar archive. No more lists. The calendar is so much cleaner and prettier.

I also have my own domain!*

* Translation: www.thisisyourdomain.com

No more .blogspot! I'm way too professional for that! Ha. The great thing about Squarespace is that a domain is included in the yearly fee. I don't have to scour random domain websites for a reliable business to host it. 

NO. MORE. DESIGN. TALK. ASHLEE. 90% of your readers probably can't even understand you. Let's move on to something funner. Not a word, but funner the word is funner than more fun. Funner.

An overview of what posts are next on the queue:

•Platform dirt: which is better? Squarespace vs. Blogger; Squarespace vs. Wordpress||

•Into the Past Week: totally left on a cliffhanger. There were still two posts left in that series: a memory link up (mine is over car rides, wait & see; I know, what an interesting topic) and a non-sunshine-and-unicorns post. Fun fun. 

•Living So That: remember that devotional I was gonna review? I'm still gonna do that. I finished chapter one, so stay tuned.

•Christmas: really late, I know. But did you really think I'd let that go?

•WRITING!!! OH MY LIVING GOODNESS! I CAN'T EVEN I JUST CAN'T! I cannot say anything or I'll spill it all. If you follow my social media, you might already know what I'm talking about.

•Giveaway Winners: I'm so sorry, I have not forgotten about you. You will be announced and contacted and rewarded. I promise.

•2k15 Review: I am so not missing this either. Lovely recap posts and goals. I'm in.

•Winter Bucket List: who doesn't love those?

More to come, more to come...

Before I let you go, make sure you check out the new pages! About me, about my blog, faq's, my mission, my journey, sponsoring details, writing services, design services, my new design collection, an official bucket list, and an official contact form. Lots of new features you do not want to miss, friends. 

Thanks readers! Love ya all so much. :3 Operation Sparkles by Ashlee is back in action.

OOH! I forgot to mention the new signature I incorporated! Look at it. Just LOOK AT IT.