Why & How To Self-Host Your Blog + 50% off!

Happy Cyber Monday, everyone!

Over at HostGator (my favorite hosting company), they’re offering 50% off all hosting plans, TODAY ONLY. This means instead of paying $10 a month, or $80 for a year up front, you can get the entire year up front for $40.

Some of you already have self-hosted blogs, but a lot of you keep hearing about them, and are wondering if you should be on Blogger or WordPress, and why anyone would bother paying for WordPress when you could just use it for free.

I decided to bunker down at Starbucks before leaving Portland this morning to give you access to my “Understanding Domains, Hosting & The Internet” PDF I give to my blog design clients. This PDF* will help you understand what a self-hosted blog is and does, and how to set one up. And to tell you that if you’ve been putting off self-hosting your blog or portfolio website, today is the time to do it. Please use my affililate link so I can get commission! ♥

If you are on WordPress, click here for the Understanding Domains, Hosting & The Internet PDF.

If you are on Blogger, click here for the PDF, which includes an explanation of some of the difference between the two blog platforms.

If you’d like step-by-step instructions for purchasing your blog hosting plan, click here.

Also, I’m currently booked through the holidays for blog design, but if you’d like to go ahead and reserve time in January (new year, new blog!!) I would love to hear from you. Shoot me an email at laurennicolelove[at]gmail.com. There is more information on my blog design here. I’m also available to design banners, buttons, Twitter page backgrounds, Facebook landing pages, etc.


*Note on PDFs: These were written & designed for active clients, so please pardon any instructions that do not apply to you. Also, you do not need to use the 25% off coupon that is listed in the PDF. Use the CYBERMONDAY11 coupon that defaults into the code section today to receive 50%. Feel free to use the 25% off coupon at a later date though! 🙂 Thank you!.

I Found A Lie Inside


New Photography, Calling All Cool Moms, Pittsburgh & Ephesians.

The past couple days I’ve been near Youngstown, Ohio, visiting the boyfriend’s family. I got some awesome pictures of Julie & the kiddos, and Max’s feet. I also just re-designed Julie’s blog, Calling All Cool Moms (!!!!), which you should definitely check out. That woman is hilarious. And super hot. You can follow her on twitter too, at @juliannegulu.

Tomorrow we are headed to Pittsburgh and I am SO excited to see Laura (SecretAgentL) and find out whatever God is doing there. If you’re in Pittsburgh, let me know!

If you want to change your life, decide to read the book of Ephesians every day for 7 days. The whole thing. There are only 5 or 6 chapters, and every time I’ve done this, my life has turned upside down. We forget so easily what following Jesus is supposed to look like, and how simple our faith is — Ephesians is an incredible reminder of this. Seriously, please do it. And if you do, leave me a comment or email me to let me know. And tell me what changed for you. I’d love to hear.

– – –

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were useless and in the dark — it is by grace you have been saved. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that you cannot say, “I have done this on my own.” – Ephesians 2.

+ there’s a mess inside my head +

I haven’t been writing much, lately. All that is about to change, starting with this.


+ living & pretty things +

An excerpt from my journal, back in March 2010:

“I think my missing secret may be to perceive life holistically, and not to compartmentalize. I need to stop limiting, dividing, standardizing, closing, expecting, sectioning and drawing lines. My life is whole, not in days or years or places. I live in the center of a sphere that becomes more fully developed, not a dot moving forwards along a linear path.

When God created us in His image, he meant, “in his image.” When He says “I Am,” we have an element of his Being. Active being. Time, place and other restrictions on us are illusions to keep us bound and blinded with a focus only on moving forward, and to keep us from experiencing that we are, and we are whole in our existence. “

– – –

Darling Katie mailed me this adorable…well, I certainly can’t call it a letter or a card because it is neither. It made me cry. I think I’m going to start documenting my mail, because I believe I get the best in the world. I am so blessed.

Tom lent me an amazing movie which you should all see, called Frida. I’m warning you, it’s beyond depressing. But one of those movies that “everyone should watch.” I can’t help but make little pretty things all the time, so I taped this on the DVD when I returned it:


+ a painting: this is captivity +

This is an old painting of mine that I realized I wrote a bit about (most of my larger pieces of art are inspired by writing) and felt like blogging about it. It is titled “This Is Captivity.” The text is blockquoted below, with more explanation and thoughts underneath. My perfectionist self disappeared when I got to the script – for some reason at the time I didn’t care much for the painting and didn’t bother taking my time to do the script well. Live and learn.

Held in captivity long enough and your reality changes. Your vocabulary that of an optimist without hope. Your sunrise a rainy afternoon – your freedom an extension of your chain by a few more guilt ridden links. Mourn for an illusion so that your heart is not allowed recognition of death. The color of life fades until you are unsure of even the outlines of the faces you once knew. You struggle only against your own strength instead of that which binds you. This is captivity.

Captivity is traditionally defined as imprisonment, confined to a space, a being that has been domesticated and is now kept so. A captive being one taken in a state of war.

I believe captivity is much broader than what we limit it to through our primarily historical concepts of military wars, battles, and physical force. Captivity is the enemy of freedom; it’s absence, the lack thereof. Most people are truly not free.

Imprisonment is not simply living within stone walls, it is the restraint and bondage of the true self. Confinement is not simply forced seclusion, it is the lack of the experience of joy and full life. Domestication is not only an acceptable method of bettering what we own, it is the adaptation of a should-be valued heart for another’s purposes or use.

I have watched many close to my heart be taken into captivity as a result of a numerous misbeliefs, untruths, pride, unlove, and ungrace. I have re-written “captivity” as I see it, and sought to portray the captivity of a woman I know. She is held by no physical force, but her heart has most certainly been taken into captivity. The script references that which is closest to her heart, and the doorways through which captivity has slowly and wholly crept in unnoticed; what she has lost and become numb or blind to, and how captivity re-writes our view of reality.

Symbolism in this painting includes the patterned hearts in the background, representing the fact that captivity often comes in the form of patterns, repetition, and dull same-ness; also by what is closest to you. The blindfold for the loss of ability to see that which is before you. The script placed over her chest representing the weight and heaviness captivity holds over the heart. The absence of all five features except for the lips; captivity seems to bring a subconscious, overwhelming hunger and need for anything to bring back the illusion of life. In this woman, I have watched her sexuality, beauty, and femininity numb the pain of everything else she has lost. This is what she still clings to; I believe something deeper still knows that her original self is More..

twenty ten.

happy new year!

i played with the idea of posting my resolutions,
but since most of them are about doing things,
i thought i’d post what i’ve done so far. 🙂

///// writing /////

///// painting + drawing /////

///// multimedia /////


+ sneak peek: new jewelry line +

so, i’m making jewelry/pretty things again. i’m a lot more excited for this than normal, which means i’ll probably be slacking on 90% of the rest of my life. but, that’s okay. i apologize for the horrible photos – i’m excited to take some with natural light within the next couple days (it’s been challenging as i leave before the sun comes up and come home after the sun goes down). anyhow, the line will be listed on etsy for purchase within the month.

nothing was ever beautiful for you.


+ the next print +

potential next print.

yes, or no?.

+ new art on etsy! +