I logged into my blog today, thinking "I think it's pretty close to a year ago that I started this thing." I checked the date of my first post, and found that it was, in fact, exactly one year ago today.
I'd like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for sticking with me for a whole year! If I didn't have readers, I certainly wouldn't have a blog. It's funny, really, how things work out. Sometimes I wonder "Is this really worth it?" But right after I have that thought, someone will post a nice comment, or stop me in the grocery store to tell me that they really enjoy the blog, or catch me at church to tell me which recipe they tried last week. I'm not blogging for a pat on the back or for attention, but I'm always glad to hear that people enjoy the food and the meal-planning assistance...it makes my time worthwhile :)
So far, I haven't run out of recipes or ideas...although I seem to have more ideas than I have time. I'd love to do another series or two, because it gives me the opportunity to post some recipes that don't seem to ever coincide with the Meijer ad, or to stretch my writing muscles. Is anyone interested in a "Better Breakfasts" series? (I'm trying to get out of the "cold cereal/frozen waffle" rut!) How about a series of copycat recipes? Or a series of articles about the family dinner hour? Or a series of Pinterest recipes? Let me know if you are interested in any or all of the above, or if you have your own idea for a series. Again, this is all provided I can find the time :)
Speaking of not having enough time, I know things have been kind of boring around here lately. I haven't posted anything in the "Chew On This, Too" categories for awhile now, but I have some things in the works. I'm working on a few "Make It or Buy It" recipes, and I also have plenty of pictures ready to go for a few "Before and After" posts. Ahem, what was that about finding the time?
To wrap up this "Blogiversary" post, I thought I'd share a few random things I've learned in the past year:
1. Pictures are (still) worth a thousand words. When I started this blog, I said that I "might" post pictures with some of the recipes. However, I quickly learned that food pictures are pretty much a necessity. The recipes without pictures definitely have the least number of "clicks." I still have some old recipes that don't have pictures, but I'm working on going back and adding those.
2. I'm horrible at taking food pictures. I can't figure out the lighting, so I always have to use flash, which creates shadows and glare. Sorry, that's just the way it is.
3. Word art can rescue even the most horrible picture. Has anyone noticed the pictures of the newer recipes? I'm not sure why I never added word art to my pictures before, but it's not hard to do and it makes the pictures look more professional...not to mention more "pinnable."
4. Social media is where it's at. I still don't have a personal Facebook page, but I have one for the blog. Cooking Up a Sale has more fans on Facebook (179) than it has official members on the blog (83). As well, Pinterest has been a pretty big traffic source for this blog.
5. This is just a hobby. If I start getting sponsors and advertisers, I'll probably change my tune. But for now, I'm OK with not posting a new recipe or the Recipe Round-up if I have a busy weekend. Hopefully you're OK with that too!
6. Readers are awesome! Seriously. This blog grew quickly because of YOU! Every time you post a comment after a recipe, add a tip at the end of an article, email me to let me know about a link that doesn't work, or pass this blog along to your friends, you help make Cooking Up a Sale a better blog.
Thanks again for reading, thanks for your encouragement, and thanks for your support!