Blogging can be cathartic in lots of ways, but one of the greatest things about blogging is having a good old rant and finding out if the world agrees with you!
That's what inspired Hannah Brewer to start her blog, Muddling Along Mummy, in 2009. "I read an article in the paper saying all women who home birth are hippies who wear ugly shoes and I felt moved to write an article to say actually, you can give birth at home and still wear nice shoes!"
Hannah really caught the blogging bug during her second pregnancy, when she was on bed-rest for four and a half months. "It was a lifeline, people to talk to, interesting things to read and a way to feel less isolated," she explains. "When I went back to work after maternity leave, it gave me a window into the world of parenting – there's not a lot of time to catch up with other parents when you're working full-time."
I think by being able to get various topics out on the blog, I save my husband hours of me sitting at the table muttering about this or that being wrong!
One of the most popular features on Muddling Along is the Friday Rant Club – a chance for Hannah to have a great rant about anything from why is it so hard to get a doctor's appointment to why the weather is rubbish.
Hannah sometimes invites her friends to use the blog as a place to have a good old rant, but some of her favourite posts are about her own views on the big issues – like can women really have it all?
Writing about things she feels passionately about means Hannah's blog can sometimes be controversial but in the main this is a good thing. "People can get upset by what you write if they don't agree, but the upside is you get to debate issues with people, to understand different points of view and expand your horizons," she says. "I love that. I know I'm not always right and it's good to have your assumptions challenged."
However, Hannah has made the decision to keep her blog relatively anonymous, using a different name for blogging to her 'professional' name.
I'd be mortified if some of my colleagues read the things I've written about my knackered nethers, our sex life, and trying for our baby.
"I cross my fingers and it seems the people I work with don't read Mummy blogs!
Blogging is a hobby for Hannah but she does make a little money from advertising on her blog – which she uses to buy new books for her Kindle.
More importantly, though, Hannah has had some great opportunities to visit places through her blog. "I've been on local radio, cooked with a celebrity chef and made real friends through my blog, so I'm incredibly grateful to it for those things."
Having a blog has also helped Hannah as a parent, she says. "It was bloggers who supported me through my difficult pregnancy, through my daughter's very high needs and dairy allergy," she says. "The blog enables me to write things I might find difficult to say, because it's hard to admit you're struggling, but it's so reassuring to have other people say it's okay, they have been there, too."
More than anything, blogging helped Hannah realise that she loves to write. "Writing can be therapeutic. Exploring my feelings in words helps me understand them and getting stuff off my chest saves my husband many hours of me talking at him."
www.notonthehighstreet.com: Just the best place for treats and presents (for me, obviously)
www.etsy.com: I love finding quirky things on this site
www.pinterest.com: I've just discovered this and am finding lots of lovely ideas for our home and garden.
www.morethanjustamother.com: One of the first blogs I found and is really funny – always makes me laugh.
twitter.com/muddlingalong: I'm mildly addicted to Twitter. By which I mean, completely addicted
www.amazon.co.uk: I've managed to convince myself buying books for the children is educational so I spend far too much time on Amazon.