My “Inauguration”

Those who know me know how much I love learning new things, especially when it comes to technology. Since high school I have been experimenting with free websites, such as Webs, but have always been disappointed with the limitations they have. For years I have worked with the “one size fits all”, “no HTML needed” model. Creating my dream website with generic layouts and having no HTML knowledge proved daunting.

I had a blog at Blogger, but even that wasn’t quite what I wanted. I wanted more than a blog, I wanted a space on the internet to play with and make my own. This all changed when I discovered WordPress, a Content Management System (CMS) that some of my friends were using to host their blogs. What I liked about WordPress was that you could choose from a myriad of themes and layouts. Only issue? To create my dream site, I realized I needed to learn at least some HTML.

I am a very do-it-yourself type person and I love reading. After asking around for book suggestions on HTML, I was steered toward HTML, XHTML & CSS For Dummies. Another great resource that I found is W3Schools.com, an on-line tutorial website that teaches you HTML (among other markup languages) that has its own HTML editor so you can practice codes and see how they look.

After getting over some apprehension, I took the plunge. I am very excited to announce that on November 16th, 2010 I bought my own domain name and hosting at Go Daddy. This is both an experiment and work in progress. With the help of good resources and an individual who has been generous (and patient!) enough to give me pointers, I am very happy to finally unveil my site, Shannon Lee Gilstad. I am no “expert” in HTML (not yet, at least- watch out, world!), but I am learning at a decent pace and getting more comfortable everyday.

A special thanks to the following people, for this would not be possible without you:

Amanda Marsh for the support, advice, and patience!
Manuel Tejeda, who took this awesome picture of me that I’ve used on my site.
John Nieves for explaining to me what a “page source” is.
Fernando Varela of Cafecito Bogotá who has encouraged me to share my blog and photos with the world.
Lance Ríos and theBeing Latino family for helping to give me a voice.
And to all the other people in my life who have supported my photography, blogs, and helped me to grow.

Thank you!!!