RECOMMENDED TOOLS & PRODUCTS

Affiliate links to follow:  I only recommend tools, products, and services that I use and love to manage this site, run my business, and support a healthy lifestyle.  With gratitude, your choice to support my affiliate(s) may result in TotalleeDee receiving a small commission that keeps this site up and running.   Rest assured, there is no rate/price increase or adjustment that is passed to you.

I’m a DIY’er, non-coder, non-designer, and non-developer.  If you’re like me, you want to understand the how and why things work to make informed decisions.

10 years ago, there were not many solutions available to build a website without knowing how to code.  Hosted sites were very popular but come with design, options, features, and integration limitations.  Today, anyone can easily and simply create and build a beautiful self-hosted WordPress website without knowing code.  Plus, using a great theme and page builder you have complete and total control of your brand to create and maintain a spectacular digital personality.  Simply drag-n-drop!

I love using tools that are easy to use, offer excellent customer service and support, and are free (or inexpensive), and reputable.

While domain names and web hosting are a necessary expense, my recommended free theme’s and page builder are a great place to try them out yourself.  I think you will agree the expense to upgrade any of these options is very reasonable.  If you desire complete control over your own website with easy-to-use tools, you might love these products as much as I do!

These recommendations are my own and based on my experience creating my own websites.

DOMAIN NAMES

I strongly recommend registering a domain name separate from a web host.  While many web hosts will include a domain name in a hosted plan, don’t be fooled thinking you’re saving a buck.  Trust me when I say it’s a royal pain (minor nightmare) to untangle domain registration from your web host in the event you wish to change your host provider.  I learned this the hard way.  Updating the DNS record is easy, even if you never change host providers.  Happily, all my domain names are registered with NameCheap.  Other benefits:

  • Leading domain registrar
  • Extremly affordable
  • Easy to use interface
  • Excellent customer support and service
Domain Names for $0.88

WEB HOSTING

I love SiteGround!  After fooling around with assorted web hosted providers for years (who shall not be named) and making the decision to do it myself, I chose SiteGround to host my websites.  My only regret is that it took me so long to figure this out.  Self-hosting is way more simple today then it was 10 years ago.  Again, I must stress I am not a coder, designer, or developer and found SiteGround to be amazing and very easy to work with.  They’ve got all the tools you need and the support is outstanding!  Other benefits:

  • 24/7 support with live chat
  • Free SSL's and HTTP/2
  • Free email accounts
  • Free Cloudfare CDN
  • Great shared hosting for beginners
Web Hosting

WORDPRESS THEMES

This site is created with luv using the Astra Theme.  Mobile friendly (aka Responsive) is the new standard and Astra delivers! Easily customize the design without code.   Beginner friendly!  I purchased the Pro version (currently priced at $59.00/YR) for the support, upgrades, and extras.  Worth every cent!  The free version is pretty amazing if you are just starting out with a limited budget.  Other benefits:

I also use GeneratePress on my sister site T11VA.com.  I really like this theme too!  Responsive, fast, powerful, and easy to use.  Easily customize the design without code.   I purchased the Premium version (currently priced at $39.95/YR) for the support, upgrades, and extras.  Worth every cent!  The free version is pretty amazing.  If you are a more advanced user or a creative developer, you may find this theme could be your ticket!  Other benefits:

PAGE BUILDER

I luv, luv, luv Elementor!  This page builder is soo much fun to use and I found it to be very intuitive.  The power is incredible and the sky is the limit.  Whatever you can imagine you will be able to easily create.  Elementor is one of the preferred page builders to sit on either the Astra or GeneratePress theme.  The collaboration between these organizations is top notch!! Awesome for beginners and advanced users alike.  I purchased the Pro version (currently priced at $49.00/YR) for the support, upgrades, and extras.  Worth every cent! The free version is unbelievable!  Other benefits:

PLUGINS

MalCare is a leader in website protection and integrated secure backups!!  MalCare mitigates getting blacklisted by Google, being blocked by Webhosts or any possible security threats from the most complex malwares.  MalCare are the buys behind BlogVault, a premium website backup service that has helped back up and secure close to 90,000 WordPress sites.  Other benefits: 

MARKETING

Missinglettr is a bloggers best friend!!  Missinglettr is easy to use and keeps your blog alive by automating and scheduling the re-posting of your content.  Once you post your blog do you forget about it?  Missinglettr  breaths life into old posts and pushes content to your own social media channels over 12 months.  Yup, that’s a full year of your content staying relevant and active plus a huge time saver because it’s automated!!  Other benefits:

Missinglettr

AFFILIATES

Shareasale is an industry leader as an Affiliate Marketing Network, in operation for 18+ years.  Shareasale works with popular and respected merchants for Home & Garden, Fashion,  Business, Green, and more.  Other benefits:

WHOLE 30

My favorite go-to when on the run or short of time.  My favorites are Blueberry and Mixed Berry (berrylicious).  If you doing a Whole 30 round or not, there is something to be said for ‘real’ ingredients.  No added sugar.  No dairy.  No soy.  No Gluten.  No B.S. <gotta luv the no bs part> .  Wanna try it?  Click here or the image at the right and try 12 for $20.00.  That’s 25% off your first order of the sample pack + free shipping!!!