A whole year, where’s it gone? But then I’m always thinking that these days. People told me that as soon as you have kids life speeds up. And they’re not wrong. So it’s been a year since I started my foodie blogging and nearly two years since the Family Foti arrived in France. Life’s certainly whizzing by.
I’d been hoping to mark my Blogiversary with a special celebratory cake baked in my new oven but as the oven hasn’t actually arrived yet I can’t manage that one (2 days delivery time turned into 21 days and now ‘within 45 days’, that’s France for you). So we’ll celebrate with cake when it finally arrives. But for now I’m offering my thoughts on blogging one year on and my Top 5 posts of the year.
I LOVE blogging and the longer I blog the more addictive I’m finding it. It gives me a creative space that I don’t have elsewhere in my life these days. Somewhere that’s all mine, a little bolt hole for the mind and soul if that makes sense. And when you have two very small children I think a little escapism is really important!. I love my private blogging time, and if I could find the time each and every day I would.
I’ve met lots of lovely people through blogging, tweeting and facebooking. People I would never normally have come into contact with. And next year I’m going to make every effort to get out there and meet some of them for real, with the aim of getting to at least one blog event. My eye’s very definitely on Food Blogger Connect, but would welcome any advice on other must attend events?
I’m definitely becoming a more adventurous and confident home cook, always feeling the need to try something new and experiment with different ingredients. Growing most of our own veggies has also helped with this and I’ve loved finding new ways to use up the various gluts and goodies we have at Chez Foti. When I set out a year ago I remember saying to Mr F that if nothing else comes of the blogging at least we’ll eat well from it. And I wasn’t wrong.
Getting to grips with photography has also been a wonderful, and steep, learning curve for me. I really was rubbish when I first set out and in all honesty I’m pretty ashamed of my first few blogs! I’m definitely in a very different more creative space now.
In all honesty I’m trying to devise a way to make a career out of my blog, or at least in food writing or recipe development. But I fear this is going to be exceptionally tricky on many levels and especially due to my geographical location i.e. not being UK based (though most of my readers are). But we will see. Having said that any career in extremely rural SW France is going to be tricky!.
My Top 5 Blog Posts of the Year:
1) Interestingly my most popular blog so far, at least statistically anyway, was my Two Baby Pasta & Puree Recipes, which so happened to my own littlies’ favourite weaning foods. It was a recipe I wrote for my friend Sam who designs and sells the gorgeous Oogaa brand of silicone baby and young child feeding equipment. We’re just in the process of launching a new Oogaa Recipe Site featuring lots of my baby, toddler and young children’s recipes.
2) And my second most popular blog on the stats is a super-healthy and vegan Potato, Cauliflower and Pumpkin Curry (Aloo Gobi Kaddu) that I made last year on several occasions. It’s one of my favourites too, and one I must re-make now we’re well into the Pumpkin season. Perhaps for dinner tonight, though without the cauliflower as they’re not yet in season at Chez Foti.
3) My 3rd most read post was Jacques’s Chocolate Birthday Cake I made earlier in the year for his second birthday. It also so happens to be one of the very few non-vegetable based cakes to survive The Oven without a very burnt bum. Probably because it was a very liquid cake mix. The cream and plain chocolate icing was divine, and again divinely simple!.
4) Now for my favourite posts! I really enjoyed making, photographing and writing the Chocolate Pumpkin Cake post, which coincidentally has also been my most popular recent post. An (almost) healthy choccie cake, what could be better! It’s also evidence of how my photography has come on since I so cluelessly set out a year ago!
5) I couldn’t make a favourites list without some mention of the Chez Foti Summer of Tomatoes, so my final blogiversary fave has to be my Tomato Veg of the Month post. And I will further reiterate here that I will one hundred percent, absolutely most definitely not be growing so many tomatoes EVER again (unless for commercial gain obviously!). As lovely as my store cupboards and freezer now look by heck they took up my precious time these last few months!
So that’s it for my Blogiversary Special! I so wonder what this next exciting year will bring? Any careers advice and/or job offers gratefully received!