It’s an end-of-year linky! Sadhbh started it, I’m just jumping on the bandwagon. But it seems like the right time for a little look back. 2014 was the year I moved to WordPress and got my very own .com URL for the blog. I still haven’t fixed my linkbacks, but other than that, I’m pretty happy about making the move.
I feel like my blogging took a back seat a little during the year, and I didn’t really gain many new readers; but it was a springboard to other things that I really enjoyed, like the wonderful experience I had working on and writing for Parent.ie (currently on hiatus), which I wouldn’t have missed for anything.
1. Most popular post
Apparently the most popular post of the year was Banana Butterscotch Muffins with a Healthier Twist. This is not because it’s a scandalous exposé of my private life, but probably because I pinned it and it’s the sort of thing that comes up in google searches, so it’s guaranteed a few hits every day.
However the most popular post on a single day was Little Americans, because I used it to audition for Listen To Your Mother and it was linked to from their website. (Or somebody’s website connected with it. I can’t actually figure out exactly where it was now.)
2. Favourite post
This is really really hard. These posts are my babies, you know. I can’t just pick one. The best I can do for you is to give you a quick run down of the year in posts.
In January, I wrote about how Avocados remind me of my late mother-in-law.
In February I felt like parenting had given me a particularly thin skin.
In March I got all hilarious and gave you My day in Upworthy headlines.
In April I wrote three paragraphs in search of a theme.
In May I walked out of the mall and thought that it Feels like America. Which should have been obvious, but there you go.
In June I joined Helen’s linky to talk about what I miss when it comes to babies.
In July it was Summer.
But in August we went to Italy where I took quite a lot of photos.
In September, I had thoughts about Mabel starting kindergarten.
In October I looked forward to speaking in the vernacular again: Sure you’re grand.
In November I got to grips with some freelance editing, which was its own brand of tantalizing tedium.
And in December, another linky gave me the opportunity to wax lyrical about Christmas past.
3. Favourite photo
All my favourite photos go on the blog. But I am particularly fond of this one.
4. Best adventure
Well, we went to Italy. That was pretty good. I also had an adventure of my own when I flew solo to Dublin in November.
5. Favourite craft
This was the year of the knitting, although we did have a brief snow-induced flirtation with elastic band bracelets and melty beads too, and we discovered that real watercolour paper makes all the difference. But knitting was definitely the winner.
6. Favourite food I blogged about
This year I found a new food – beetroot (or just beets, if you’re American). It was a revelation, even if nobody else in the family agreed.
7. Most common theme
I think it was actually “What’s going on with Dash?” between his eating stuff and his reading stuff. There was also some boring “What’s going on with my back?” and of course the usual “I’m Irish on the inside” and lots of Mabel, because where would we be without lots of Mabel?
8. Favourite comment
I don’t have a favourite comment, but I can tell you that Emily and Joanna were my most frequent commenters this year. I love comments, but I love engaging on Facebook and Twitter too, so don’t be afraid to tell me what you think in whatever medium you like best.
9. Favourite celebration
I think it has to be Halloween, even though we obviously had two birthdays and Christmas and Easter as well. Halloween was busy in the best way, and it’s one of the most fun times to live in this neck of the woods.
10. My best move
Easy – it was getting involved with Parent.ie. I learned a ton about writing and SEO and professionalism and working with people you never meet, and I made some of the best friends I have, and I had a connection with home that is hard to replicate.
11. Best blog moment
I was very happy to get to the finals of the Blog Awards Ireland this year, having been at shortlist stage last year. I monitored the awards ceremony on Twitter and Facebook and apparently it was just like having me at the table because the Twitter feed was coming in on a big screen the whole time. If I’d only known, I’d have worn some mascara too.
12. Favourite thing I wrote somewhere else
I wrote a lot on Parent.ie. I really did. Sometimes it was exhausting thinking of new stuff, and I have to admit that sometimes they were just taking up space more than words I’m really proud of, but I did really like this one, and it seemed to resonate with a lot of people: Terrible Truths Nobody Tells You. (These posts are all currently hosted at the Irish Parenting Bloggers‘ site.)
13. My favourite title
I think I’ll choose Angels in the architecture/Spinning in infinity because I didn’t even write it and it has been one of my favourite lines for a very long time.
14. What my blog did for me in 2014
Don’t laugh, okay, but I think what happened this year was that I started to think of myself as a creative person for the first time ever. I’d always put the word “creative” in a box with the word “artistic”, and neither of those things applied to me. But between one thing and another, my definitions are breaking down and softening up and it’s just possible that I’m allowed to be creative after all.
External validation is good too. Remember I won a blue ribbon?