a year of blogging

Today marks the day. Drum roll please...I have been blogging for one whole year.  Yikes!

My first ever blog post on Wednesday 10 August 2011 and it was about how much I love wild flowers.

It's really odd to try and imagine myself from where I stood this time last year because so much has changed, not least the size of my belly or the state of our garden which has gone from expansive wild flower prettiness to a building site and a whole heap of mess! Hence no wild flower blog posts this year!

However, and this will surely surprise you dear reader, the reason I started blogging was not to boast about my lack of gardening prowess, instead it was to tell the story of this little hairy creature who came to live with us in May 2011.  She is the real reason I started babbling to the world, our beautiful Matilda Mahinda Moorhen aka Tilly.

Oh my goodness I still can't quite believe how scrumptious she was, so dinky and perfect and cute.

I had just taken redundancy from my very dull public sector job so we could get this cute little gal and I think it's fair to say that sometimes you have to make a big, scary life change if you want to make your dreams come true.  We had become obsessed with getting a dog to the point where we would moon over other people's when we were out and about (more than a bit embarrassing at times), and we knew that we had to do something about it and that it was never going to happen with us both working full time.

So it was decided, I was being offered redundancy anyway so it would fall to me to look after her for six months at home and then I would find another job towards the end of the year because by then she would be big enough to look after herself (at least for a few hours during the day), and old enough for a dog walker to consider taking on.

Now blogging wasn't exactly on the cards but I got into the habit of reading blogs and once hooked on reading them (as any fellow blog owner knows), you start itching to do one yourself.  So I made the (rather rash) decision and just started, probably should have thought it a bit more to begin with but I just went ahead and did it and in the early days I was a bit random (still am) and wrote lots of posts about Tilly and other stuff like makeup, gardening and food.

Then life went a little bit crazy and blogging took a back seat.

Darren was faced with redundancy too (both of us in the same year, how mean!), but he (unlike me) was offered a job in San Francisco as an alternative - not too shabby for Darren huh?  So off we went to check out the Bay area of San Francisco and for quite a while it looked like that was what we would be doing, moving to America. Gulp.

But lady luck was on our side because after a week in San Francisco we realised that we didn't really want to move there after all (mainly because of Tilly) and amid all the panicky realisation of this Darren was offered a different job in London instead, confirmed as we landed at Heathrow after a super-long and super-uncomfortable flight home. Phew does not even cover the relief, the shoulder lifting, stress relieving joy of knowing that we could stay in our lovely home (strange how much we all of a sudden loved our shabby, little Victorian house)!!

Then I discovered crochet. I had bought a crochet book as a Christmas present for someone else and when it arrived I started flicking through it, got sucked right in and needless to say that person didn't get a whiff of a crochet book for Christmas!

I am in love with it and love finally having a creative outlet after trying and being crap at a random assortment of activities such as painting, knitting, parkour, playing the oboe and gardening.

The New Year started with me job hunting again only to find out (at the same time as receiving my first job offer) that we were pregnant.  PREGNANT! What a shocker! And what a pity about working again..ahem!!

After a bumpy few months, and all quiet on the blog front, I embraced my blooming blog with a fresh, new perspective.  I've got more focus now and am fully engaged with the lovely blogging community which is massive.  I've enjoyed making new friends who blog and learning from others about what works and what doesn't - this has been completely invaluable over the last few months.

I've narrowed my focus to concentrate mainly on crochet but I'm still obsessed with doing my nails so can't help but write about that and anyway there is so much pretty and interesting stuff in the world that it's quite hard not to get distracted every now and then.

So a year of blogging.  A year where I've gone from complete idiot novice to an experienced old hand.  What a year it's been and so many changes in our lives too.  We've raised a gorgeous puppy, faced down double redundancy, got pregnant, started a huge kitchen extension project and had the best secret wedding ever.

I have loved this past year even though it's been a rollercoaster, thank you all so much for reading and I can't wait to see what joys and experiences the next year brings.