Frugal Mama Has a Brand-New Look


Dear Readers,

I’m so happy to announce that, after an accident last fall where I lost all my images, the website has been completely transformed into something more beautiful and easy-to-use.  Frugal Mama now looks more like a resource-rich website rather than a daily blog.

The front page has a rotating slider that highlights recent and seasonal posts. Articles and printables are represented by clickable images. And I’ve added some new features, like my favorite products and press mentions.

The new site has just opened and needs some more muscle to get it fully stocked.  Over the next few months (hopefully before the baby arrives), I’ll be dusting off and spiffing up every single Frugal Mama post, with updated info and images.

New content will be added all the time, so I hope you’ll keep checking back.

Backstory:  Bad Accident

Do you remember seeing this post back in October?


With one click, I had lost more than three years of photos, images, printables, and logos.

How did this happen?  As one of many steps to increase security after getting hacked, I changed my WordPress user name.  But when I deleted the old user, all the media files associated with that user (me) were deleted too.  Whether this was a WordPress glitch or my own ineptness is irrelevant.  The fact was, after several professional attempts to recover the data, the images were gone, and I didn’t have a full back-up of my site.

Reconstruction: Cleaning up the Ashes

My first steps were the unfun ones, like reinforcing the foundation. I moved the site to a new hosting account, I invested in and practiced several back-up systems, and I began doing regular security sweeps.

Then, the photos.  To find the ones I had used on the blog, I would have to sift through tens of thousands of images. Due to several cross-country moves, computer changes, labeling systems, and a hard drive crash, they were scattered everywhere.

Even though I can’t say I got as far as labeling and organizing all of them, I was at least able to gather them all on a handheld portable hard drive.

New Life:  How the Website was Reborn

Structural work done, I turned my attention to the ugly blue question marks and 404 errors all over my site.  I just couldn’t face the hours and hours of painstaking work involved in finding, formatting, and re-uploading every photo to simply return to where I left off.

A redesign was the answer.  It was something I had wanted to do anyway, but who knows if I would have gotten around to if it weren’t for my accident? I imagined a portfolio-style website where blog posts were showcased with rotating and clickable images and past articles on any topic would be easy to find.

After trying to redo the site myself using ready-made themes, it became clear that I was in over my head. So I decided to take the remainder of last year’s profits (from writing and video jobs) and re-invest them in a professional design.

After a long search, I found Jennae Petersen of Hibiscus Creative, a talented designer who specializes in my WordPress theme (Thesis), and we put our heads together to create the new Frugal Mama.

I hope you find the new design easy to navigate and fun to use.




Frugal Mama — How to save money and make life better

So what do you think of the new site?

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  • Lisa May 4, 2013, 3:20 pm

    Looks great and I also appreciate the back lesson! I had no idea that changing the username and deleting the old one would cause such a havoc! But I’m glad you’ve come out on the other side of it!

    • Amy May 4, 2013, 9:51 pm

      Hi Lisa,

      I know, can you believe what havoc? Hopefully my experience can help someone else avoid more heartache. At least the worst is behind me. Thank you for your well wishes!


  • OldMadeNew May 2, 2013, 11:30 pm

    Congrats on the new site! I just got a huge overhaul done on my site as well so I know how that breathes fresh air and excitement into a business!
    Yours looks really nice. Have you checked it on an iPad? I noticed the text is hugging the edges of the screen making it a little difficult to read and the header is taking up nearly half my screen view but maybe it is just on my end! :)

    • Amy May 4, 2013, 8:49 pm

      Hi Angie,

      So true about breathing new life into a business! I appreciate the feedback about the iPad version. My original plan was to have a mobile-responsive theme, but we weren’t able to customize it the way we wanted. Will look into this.

      Thank you,

  • Sarah Hickok May 2, 2013, 11:38 am

    Beautiful! I love it. It’s working well. Congrats.

    • Amy May 2, 2013, 9:29 pm

      Great, thanks for the feedback, Sarah!


  • Samantha @ Digital Zen May 2, 2013, 9:10 am

    It’s gorgeous! I love it. So fresh and modern. I like the “magazine” style photos on the homepage. Easy to find interesting topics, and cute photos too.

    • Amy May 2, 2013, 11:28 am

      I’m glad a web professional like yourself is so in-tune with the new site. That means a lot.

      Thank you,

  • Candy May 2, 2013, 9:08 am

    The new site looks great!

    • Amy May 2, 2013, 11:27 am

      I’m glad you like it, Candy!

  • Clare May 2, 2013, 12:11 am

    Looking good Amy! You must be relieved to have the new design all finished :)

    • Amy May 2, 2013, 11:27 am

      Hi Clare,

      Yes, relieved is a good word! Still lots of work to do, but at least now the work is much more fun.


  • Jen @ Jen Spends May 1, 2013, 10:12 am

    Congratulations on your new look, Amy! It works very nicely on both my desktop and my iPad. Jennae is a very talented designer.

    • Amy May 1, 2013, 10:20 am

      Hi Jen,

      Totally agree. Jennae is extremely talented — not only in creative design, but the technical coding aspect too. So glad to have found her!
      And thanks for letting me know that the design works on different devices.