It has been an interesting year in the food blogging world and quite a wild ride for the past six months after starting this food blog. My hope was to post up our family recipes and help those without cooking experience gain the confidence necessary to become wonderful cooks after looking at my blog pictures with instructions and trying out the recipes.
Writing a food blog has been very rewarding in many ways. Some of you have made many insightful comments to recipes I’ve posted. Many of you have encouraged me by liking so many of the recipes. Still others have reblogged my recipes and a host of others have followed my blog. Some have been active participants who have actually tried some of my recipes. That’s always special.
Here are some firsts for my food blog this year:
1) June 13th – my first post was published on this date.
This was my first post. Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies. They were delicious. We baked these cookies for the hospital staff at University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center when John was going through radiation treatments for prostate cancer.
When you look at the post you will see very few pictures and very little writing! I was completely out of my league when I started this food blog. I had a lot to learn. (I still do!)
2) In that interval there have been 345 posts published (mostly recipes). I am still not even half way through posting all our family recipes! Coconut Date Balls had the most looks, likes, comments, etc., of a family recipe that I posted this year.
These are so yummy.
3) My most pinned recipe has been Oreo Cookie Mud Pie.
Love this recipe! Thank you, Carolyn Allen, for giving me the recipe.
4) On my birthday I hit my first 10,000 views.
I never even dreamed of hitting this many views. I didn’t know what to expect when I started this blog. It’s still not a large food blog my any means, but it has been such a pleasant experience getting to know the food blogging community.
5) I had over 400 followers sign up to view my blog this year. My first follower was “Made by Mike.” It was a real encouragement to me when Mike signed up to follow my blog shortly after my first post.
6) Fellow bloggers have nominated me for 8 awards. I’m really grateful for the support of my blogging community.
Here are my top ten posts for the year:
Wonderful, delicious, and so easy!
The best corn casserole recipe you will ever eat, bar none!! Thank you, Jane Peterson, for this wonderful recipe.
These are so incredibly easy to make. A great Duncan Hines holiday baking goodie!
These luscious brownies are beautiful, elegant, and have incredibly spectacular taste.
This luscious pink salad is a wonderful side salad. One of my spiritual mentors, Bonnie Rodriguez, gave me this delicious recipe when we used to have potlucks at our weekly Bible studies.
6) Espinaca Dip
This fabulous dip is said to be a take-off on Jose Ferrar’s Espinaca Dip at his grill and cantina in Kansas City. Thank you, Mylia Roan, for this fattening but amazing recipe!
A delectable dessert that’s so easy to make. Oreo cookie crust, cream cheese layer, chocolate pudding, Cool whip, followed by a sprinkling of oreo cookie crumbs and maraschino cherries on top. Thank you, Carolyn Allen, for sharing this recipe with me back when we used to cater meals for the Baptist Convention of New England.
These fabulous no-bake cookies are a great holiday cookie. We’ve made these cookies every year since we first started our yearly Christmas Cookie Extravaganza. We got this recipe at our first Thanksgiving and Christmas together. Thank you, Beth Ambra, for this fantastic recipe.
This fabulous soup is comfort food at its best. This was one of the best new recipes I tried this year. I absolutely love this soup.
Easy and fabulous Betty Crocker recipe and a great way to use up leftover ham. Our family loves this great casserole recipe and I have made it lots and lots of times.
Christmas Cookie Extravaganza
One of the most fun sections of my blog this year was blogging about the 35 different kinds of Christmas cookies I baked this year.
Here is the distribution of some of the cookies we baked this year.
Some of my Christmas cookies were served at our church’s Fine Arts and Music Gala.
My favorite Christmas cookies are the Cranberry Nut Swirls. A delicious Taste of Home recipe we have been making every year for almost 20 years.
Those who receive our Christmas baskets every year claim Pecan Treats are one of their favorite Christmas goodies. Thanks to John’s mom, Joan McNally, for this wonderful recipe.
Peanut Blossoms are my youngest brother’s favorite cookies. Thanks to Rita Cousin, wife of my husband’s employer when we lived in Florida, for sharing this fabulous recipe.
These were my surprise cookies this year. My “reject” potato chip cookies ended up being my favorites with the biggest taste after slathering them with a wonderful chocolate icing.
Pumpkin Whoopie Pies were the favorite cookies of most of our church friends this year. Thanks to my niece, Heather Kane, for this delicious recipe.
Apricot Cream Cheese Cookies were also highly requested from our friends. Thanks to Shirley Lotts for this incredible cookie recipe.
Cinnamon Cookies are my daughter-in-law, Candice’s favorite cookies. Thanks to Mylia Roan for sharing this amazing recipe.
Red Velvet Sandwich Cookies are so decadent and rich. They scored very highly with all those who sampled them.
These Red Velvet Crinkle Cookies were the easiest cookies I made this year. Starting with a box mix and only a handful of ingredients. They turned out wonderful.
Coming up in 2013
1) My youngest son has agreed to help make my blog more user-friendly and is going to assist me in self-hosting my blog in 2013. If there are some features you would like added to my blog now is your time to speak up and let me know. We hope to roll this out in the next month or so.
2) I’m going to begin having guest bloggers this year, beginning tomorrow. I had the younger daughter of one of our friends send me a picture of something she made the other day and I asked her if she wanted to do a guest blog for me. She agreed so we will be rolling out guest bloggers this year as well.
3) John and I are each going on a year-long health challenge to eat right in 2013. His challenge is to lose 40 pounds and some of the specific things he is going to eliminate from his diet are coffee, sweet tea, and juices, along with eating more salads, fruits, and vegetables.
4) I’m going to try to eliminate gluten from my diet this year. I do not have any gluten allergies, but I do notice when I eat wheat it increases my appetite for more food in general. So I’m going to try to go a year without wheat flour in any form: desserts, pasta, pizza, pancakes, breads, chips, or even in roux in soups or sauces. As a result, I’m going to be posting a lot more gluten free recipes this year.
5) If you have read this far and have any food suggestions on what you would like me to post this year, please let me know.
Thank you, to all of you who have visited my blog this year. You have made food blogging such a wonderful experience for me. I greatly appreciate all your feedback. And for my “shy” followers who have not commented on my blog but have called, texted, or emailed me to let me know you tried a recipe and that it turned out well, thanks to you, too.
Happy New Year!