The First Year

It’s been a year since I started this blog. My intention was to write mostly about community, in all its forms (well, the ones that occurred to me, anyway). Around the time I was setting up the blog, I learned that French Fridays With Dorie was beginning that October and I joined. I have a mild food blog obsession and had run across some Tuesdays With Dorie posts. I liked the idea of cooking through a whole cookbook and the comments sections of TWD posts were very lively. French Fridays sounded like it would be fun and challenging, so I couldn’t resist.

I worried that having two separate post streams might be annoying or confusing for people who were interested in one subject or the other. What I found, though, is that my French Fridays posts have become community-building in action. Participants read each other’s French Fridays posts, but often read and comment on the rest of one another’s blogs, too. We’ve even gotten to know each other a little. Somehow, what I thought would be an entirely different stream has come to be an exemplar of what I’ve been trying to explore here.

I knew this anniversary was coming up and I wasn’t sure what I was going to write about. Then, Elaine of California Living tagged me in the Seven Links Game. It sounded like a perfect structure for a little retrospective.

Most Beautiful Post

I think that would have to be my post on Michel Rostang’s Double Chocolate Mousse Cake.

Out of the oven

I kind of love the first photo, but I chose this post for the presentation. It’s not my strong suit and I’m pretty happy with how the finished dish turned out. I loved making this cake and it inspired me to a little more creativity than I’ve generally shown in this group – I usually stick pretty close to the recipe as written.

Most Popular Post

The credit for this choice goes to WordPress – their newly revamped Site Stats section made this quite easy to figure out that my post on Scallops with Caramel-Orange Sauce was the most commented-upon.

This post combined a few things I like – good food, an exploration of my neighbourhood and a reminiscence.

Most Controversial Post

I have strong opinions, but I don’t particularly court controversy in this blog. Perhaps that’s because I have such a friendly readership. So, it was a little difficult to decide on this one. I have to choose my post on Sweet and Spicy Cocktail Nuts, though, because the idea that some people reject sweets and indulge in savouries had some of my commenters reacting as strongly as I did.

Any disputes could easily be resolved with these nuts; they’re irresistible.

Most Helpful Post

Just as I’m not particularly controversial, I’m not really that helpful, either. I generally describe, rather than prescribe. But, I think my post on Roast Chicken for Les Paresseux might qualify.

My (alleged) helpfulness: including my family’s recipe for roast chicken, along with another that had been a standby when I started out on my own. Both guarantee delicious meals.

Most Surprisingly Successful Post

This one was easy – my post on learning to sew.

I expected my first venture into sewing to be a little scary, frankly. Instead, I came away with a lovely totebag and the instructions (and confidence) to go on experimenting on my own.

The post that did not get the attention it deserved

A number of my posts haven’t received many comments or views and they’re often the ones I’ve worked hardest on. I’m not sure that translates into “deserving” more attention, but I am rather fond of them. It was a toss up for me between Art Anchors the Eastside and Secret Souls, Public Dreams, but I think I’ll go with Art Anchors the East Side.

The Eastside Culture Crawl is one of my favourite yearly events and I enjoyed describing last year’s ramble. There are links to a number of Vancouver-based artists that caught my eye on that particular Crawl, too.

The post I’m proudest of (Samuel Johnson, you just go ahead and turn in your grave. English ≠ Latin.)

I’m happy with several of my posts. Sometimes I feel like my blog is one long first draft, but occasionally, I manage to make my posts feel polished. I’m not picking one of those, though. This blog has also given me a chance to do a little stretching creatively and my post on Cinnamon-Cardamom Rice Pudding with Honeyed Rosewater Sauce might be the best example of this.

I mentioned in my last post that I’m not much of a recipe-writer. I can throw things together, but I’m not so good at writing it down or doing it the same way twice. So, sharing a recipe for a recipe round up was a challenge, especially since I decided to do a little spur-of-the-moment recipe development for it, too. I think the resulting recipe was great, if I do say so myself.

Thanks, Elaine for tagging me – I don’t often read through my old posts and it was a perfect exercise for my blogoversary post. I’m not going to tag anyone else, as most everyone I can think of has been already. If you haven’t though, do try it – it’s an interesting process.

Now just in case you think I’d forgotten, here are the results of my 100th post/blogoversary giveaway:

Ker-Yng of Life is Full was drawn first and she chose:

A Little Dinner Before the Play

Liz of That skinny chick can bake!!! was the second winner and she’ll receive:

A Dissertation upon Roast Pig

I’ll be contacting you both for shipping addresses. I hope you enjoy these books as much as I’ve enjoyed interacting with all of you here and on your own blogs.

Here’s to another year of community, cooking, and creativity.

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9 thoughts on “The First Year

  1. Teresa – I love that you have chosen to blend so many facets into your work on this site. (By the way, I have made your rice pudding before & it was a huge hit).
    Congrats on your milestone & its been fun getting to know you through your writing.

  2. Congrats on your blogiversary! I really fell off the earth with schoolwork and I’m disappointed that I didn’t keep up with the French Fridays, but I’ve enjoyed reading your posts the whole time.

  3. Oh, I’m tickled pink! I’ve never won any blog giveaway before! 🙂 Thanks!! Your blog is exactly how I would like my blog to be – writing about both life and food. Unfortunately I haven’t been blogging much about life!

  4. Happy anniversary to your blog!!! I totally agree about FFwD…I’ve met so many fabulous bloggers via these challenges…you included! Love your 7 links…it’s an opportunity to dig out some old posts to share…like your Art Anchors the Eastside…great info.

    And am so delighted to be one of your giveaway winners! Thank you!!!

  5. I absolutely LOVE your blog, Teresa, and I am so glad to have found you through FFwD! Thank you for playing the seven links game. I think that’s what I enjoyed most about this game is it gave me a chance to reflect back on posts. I think that is something we should do once in awhile. I remember all of the posts you have chosen and your sewing one reminds me that I want to get my sewing machine out again!

  6. Thanks everyone! One of the best things about blogging has been discovering all of you.

    @Cher – it’s good to know that the rice pudding was a hit for you!
    @Katie – thanks so much! It’s hard to keep up with hobbies when you’re in school.
    @Maya – I’m glad you enjoy the mix.
    @Life is Full – I’m so glad you’re excited about the book. It’s quite cool.
    @Liz – That’s great that you enjoyed that post – and I’m glad you’re looking forward to the book.
    @Elaine – Thanks again for tagging me – it was a lot of fun picking out the seven links. I’m so glad to have found you through FFwD, too!

  7. Teresa, Happy First Blogoversary!! I’ll have to visit some of your seven that slipped by me! You did a great job with this post! Funny how FFWD has brought so many people with like interests together and how we actually bonded week after week with our comments to each other. Have a great weekend!

  8. I’m catching up on my blog-reading and I am so glad to have found this post! I enjoyed reading about your 7 links because I missed many of them the first time around.

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