Happy Anniversary at the Winters Day In(n)

I was so intent on posting my newsletter yesterday that I completely forgot that it was also my one-year blogaversary, too! I've been mentally planning this post since before Christmas, but I think it shows a new level in the evolution of procrastination to be planning a post that far in advance, and to still not write it until one day late. Heh. (And that does not, by any stretch, guarantee that the content will be any more worthwhile than normal, just because I've planned it for three months instead of three minutes.)

So, I want to say how thankful I am that Colleen introduced me to the wonders of blogging. She was a good friend before, but an even better friend now. She is not the only real-life friend with whom I have developed a deeper relationship thanks to blogging. Vicki, whom I met when she sponsored me into the Pampered Chef business in 2001 (goodness gracious, has it been almost six years already?), started a blog last year, too, and it's been so good to have the same good ol' discussions about "taboo" topics that we used to have. My other "real-life" friends with blogs do not post as often, but it is so great when they do--Amanda, whom I've known since we were six, Ang, who also happens to be my sister-in-law, Christa, a long-time scrapping and church friend from Sylvan Lake, and Candice, who is the wife of an old pen-pal of mine, and when we met a few years ago, we totally hit it off!

Blogging came at a very opportune time for me--having just recently moved, I desperately needed to feel connected to a community. Also, with a baby who was only a few months old, I needed a creative outlet that did not require the sit-down time commitment of scrapbooking. Blogging provided the opportunity for both--but I really had no idea to what extent when I started.

Because of blogging:
  • I have learned HTML (I know my computer-savvy brother is just tickled pink that his sister actually figured out how to program her own template);
  • I have flexed my creative writing muscles, and discovered that I really enjoy writing. And what's more, for some strange reason, you enjoy reading it!
  • I have recorded precious daily moments in our lives that would otherwise be long forgotten by now.
  • I have felt at a distinct disadvantage when talking to family members who read my blog, but from whom I rarely hear. (That's the beauty of the comment button, for those who Choose to Use--blogging suddenly becomes two-way. However, the phone is good, too!)
  • I have learned immensely more about the world of health and nutrition than I would have committed to memory if I had only read it once and that was it.
  • I have been immensely entertained and learned more about knitting from talented knit-bloggers such as Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, Jesse Loesberg, Parikha, and Alison.
  • I learned that you can be a Christian, and one of the sweetest people ever and still like Harry Potter from Heather Anne. (By the way, Heather Anne posted a really great article about this on her blog last week. I was going to reprint it here, but it doesn't look like that's going to happen. However, I strongly recommend that you go over there and read it.)
Plus, I've found an even larger community, spread across this small globe on which we live. Whether you found my blog, or I found yours, I am so thankful for my online friends--whether you've lifted my spirits by your witty words, or by words of support and encouragement, your cyber-presence has lifted me up. Beth, who is a continual inspiration to me with her scrapbook ideas and management of a family of eight; Annie, who shares my love of healthy food and good recipes (among other things); Scott, whose writing talent is to mine like an Ent's stature is to a Hobbit's; Jason, the only blogger I've met from my own community (and we've literally met, too!); Laurie, a friend of Colleen's who knows all about life with boys; Jill, whose way with words leaves my face green and my brain twisted (all in good ways); Peggy, whom I met at Colleen's place in Yellowknife years ago, and have been able to get better acquainted with through her blog; Clare, the amazing Norfolk mummy to five kids; Grafxgurl, whose energy and enthusiasm always leave me a little breathless; Kelly, an amazing lady who (unfortunately) gave up her blog recently--it was through her blog that I met many of the other amazing folks on my blogroll; Anne, who makes me wish we were neighbours; Rohini, who has a wonderful writing style and terrific insights into this business of parenting; Paul, with such interesting tidbits of Nairobi--it's like visiting without leaving my house!; Aakanksha, the professional Medical Robotics student from Delhi Melbourne London, who has got to be one of the nicest people on the face of the planet; Fence, a fellow Firefly fan who knows way more about sports and politics than I ever will (especially the Irish kind!); Denise, who shares a love of paper crafts and nutrition; Jen, another blog-friend who said goodbye too soon; Cathy the amazing scrapbook artist who can't keep her blog template the same for two weeks back-to-back (kidding, Cathy); Sean, who wants to be held accountable by the whole world if he does not succeed in his goal of losing half his body weight; Sarah, who knows all about life in the daily zoo of raising a family; Peefer, a fellow Canadian whose writing talent is to mine as Niagara Falls is to Siffleur Falls; and Dixie, who has more nerve than I ever will, posting a preggie photo in her skivvies on her blog banner!

Thank you, all. Now my contacts are plastered to my eyeballs, and I should have been in bed an hour and a half ago. Here's to another year of growth and friendships on the World Wide Web!