Where it all began.

It was a dark and stormy night...

OK, ok… it wasn’t a dark and stormy night…  The truth is that I came up with the name of my company (ONNA) sitting at a bar with a friend on a lovely spring day.  After a few beers, I turned to my friend and said, “I want an acronym for my business name.” and it went downhill FAST from there. LOL!

My friend’s suggestions were highly inappropriate, to say the least, but that’s when I started thinking…

About the time I was learning to design and code websites, Microsoft came out with a WYSIWYG HTML editor called FrontPage, which was part of the Microsoft Office Suite. WYSIWYG stands for “What you see is what you get” – meaning that the code isn’t visible and you “see” what the web page looks like as you’re building it – making it possible for novices to create web pages quickly and easily.

(I can honestly say that I never learned how to use FrontPage because I was learning to code from scratch using CSS, which was relatively new at the time, and HTML. (CSS stands for “cascading style sheets” and revolutionized the way we style web pages today… but I won’t bore you with those details.))

Needless to say, EVERYONE decided that they were going to become a web designer. I mean, how hard can it be with now that there was a program that did the coding for you!?!? Just slap together a few images, throw in some copy, and you’ve got yourself a website. Of course, it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be.

What I finally came up with is “ONNA”, which actually stands for “Oh No Not Another” … web designer. *sigh… I know, I know… but it was really funny at the time! It also turns out, ONNA means “female” in Japanese – which is very apropos.

So here I am, 18 years later, still building websites. The world of web design has changed a LOT over the last 18 years and I’ve managed to (mostly) keep up. There’s still a lot of things I don’t know (don’t ask me to do complicated javascript or PHP), things I don’t care to know (I won’t touch WIX, Squarespace, or Facebook), and things I’ve already forgotten (must be the wine) but I still offer websites that are affordable, easily navigable, responsive and quick loading.

I like to think that I improve every year… and if you look closely, you can see me in the 3rd image hiding behind the rocks with my friend Rocky.

ONNA images from the past.

A little more personal

For 9 years (2011-2020) I was a full time RVer (see my travel blog: mybuzzabout.com) and took my office everywhere I went. The only thing I needed was an internet connection as most of my customers came from all over the world including: the US, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United Kingdom.

Then covid hit and I needed a different plan.

Traveling during covid became very difficult. If you broke down and needed parts, what used to take a day to fix now took 5-7 days because parts were harder to find AND everyone decided to buy an RV to vacation in, which meant RV parts got even more scarce and RV parks got more crowded. So, in the fall of 2020, while visiting Big Stone Gap, Virginia, I decided that it was time to buy a house. (Which turned out to be fortuitous, because in May of 2021, I found out I had breast cancer just 5 days after my sister passed away.)

I finally settled on a house in the small town of Jonesville VA – which reminds me of a lot of where I grew up in New Hampshire; beautiful rolling hills, lots of farmland, large deciduous forests to hike in… but without the bitter winter cold.  So, if you’re ever in SouthWest Virginia, stop on by for a visit.

Be safe out there!
Hillary

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