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Blogiversary Week: Best & Worst of Year 1

At my day job, what you're about to read is a little thing we call a "self appraisal."  It's that time we spend once-per-year looking back at our work--contemplating our strengths, as well as our opportunities for improvement.  Though it's sometimes painful to revisit the past, I think it's always good to take a moment for reflection on things learned along the way.

My DIY faux capiz chandelier, made from picture frames and wax paper.  This knock-off of West-Elm's $300.00 version took Pinterest by storm & received several features from blogs like Beneath My Heart, Blogs Babble, Copy Cat Crafts, Curbly.com, Craft Gossip, Decorating Cents, Decor Hacks, Knock-off Decor, SheKnows.com, and more!

Read all about my experience with this DIY here and here...and learn how to make the wax paper strands here.  

Psst...here's an insider's secret too...Mark and I have been brainstorming ideas for another DIY chandelier to hang in the nook.  We'll be shining more light (cheesy pun intended) on that project within the next few months!

My pathetic attempt at creating a set blogging routine.  I cranked out the posts in October, posting 21 times (which is completely epic for someone like me), but found with all of that writing I had zero time to work on projects...so I gave the routine the boot!

Sometimes, when I want to remember what it felt like to be a perfectly consistent blogger I browse back through my October posts.  Then I laugh.  Then I cry.  Then I accept my flaws all over again.  It's such a healing process!  You can browse through my October posts here.

I spent a lot of time Craigslisting for great deals this year, which inspired me to write the post 10 Craigslisting Rules to Live By.  Some of my favorite finds were the $25.00 credenza$35.00 sofa, and the $25.00 pair of night stands for the master bedroom.  I also found these chairs, this hutch, and this dining set from Craigsy too!  Now it's just time to refinish some furniture!

My tragic tale of losing out on a thrift store-find that would have made me the happiest girl in the world. (Well...at least until my next thrift-store find...) Imagine my pain when I found out the store had sold two of these chaise lounges right under my nose! It was heartbreaking, but I've since gathered up the pieces and moved on.

I figured after my heartbreaking story you could use a picker-upper.  My Thanksgiving table setting in a yellow and gray theme was by far the cheeriest project I worked on this year.  It even featured my favorite flower...the tulip!

Seriously, my dedication to creativity deserves a Medal of Honor!  I stooped to some new lows this year to gather some materials for my projects.  Seriously, who else would you see collecting bottles on the side of the road in the middle of the desert?

The pasta-themed gift basket I gave to my mom for her birthday...three months late... 

Wait, don't take that the wrong way...I don't mean that my mom deserved to receive her gift late...I just mean she deserved a gift.  Whew, that could easily have gotten me the Worst Daughter of the Year award!  ...but then again, it still was three months late, so maybe I'd already claimed the award anyway. Hmmm...

At least I got these gifts right:  Grilling-Themed Gift BasketPancake-Themed Gift BasketMuffin-Themed Gift BasketSpa-Themed Gift BasketThank You BucketsJar O' CookiesWordle ArtHeart ArtNow That I'm Grown Up PrintableGreen & Pink Cupcakes, Striped Tee, Red & White Baby Shower Gift

Perhaps that slightly makes up for it???

My library of Inspiration Boards and Color Schemes that grows one weekend at a time...sometimes. Hopefully this year I'll be able to add more ideas to the library for you all to browse through.

Becoming a writer for SheKnows.com, Home & Garden.  It always keeps me on my toes when my editors send me new article assignments, and I feel that it's helped me to become a better blogger.  I've learned a lot of tricks for writing for internet audiences, creating catching titles, and tagging.  You can see all of my SheKnows articles here, and here...plus, I'll keep you posted as new articles go live.

Goodbye Year One, Hello Year Two

Whew, what a year!  I can't believe it's already come and gone.  There are far too many highlights to share with you all in just one post, so I encourage you to take a look through my blog archives.  This year would not have been possible if it weren't for a few people...so here come a few shout-outs:

  1. My dear husband, Mark, who just shakes his head each time I bring home a new Craigslist find.
  2. My sister-in-law's sister, Kara, who planted that little seed in my brain that blogging might be a good fit for me.
  3. My friend, Jana, who is involved in many of the adventures mentioned on this blog, and who encourages me every step of the way.  She also put me in touch with SheKnows, so I'm forever grateful.
  4. My family, friends, and coworkers who put up with my craziness up-close and in-person...and who give me lots of material for my "Today You Made Me Smile" page.  I dedicate that page to the memory of Charles B.--my dear friend and colleague.
  5. And of course, each of you!  I am so amazed my how kind you all are & it makes me smile each time I see a new comment pop up.  You are what makes blogging worth it, and I hope you'll continue to join in!

Join the Series

Now it's your turn. What better way to finish out the series than with input from each of you?  Besides, I'm taking a vay-cay!  I want to sit back and recoup from all of this typing while I browse through your latest projects.  Please join in with my link party...add your favorite posts, projects, tips, etc.  I want to hear from you, because you make me happy!  Thanks for stopping by!



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Reader Comments (5)

Congratulations! You have done such a wonderful job, and only in the first year. You inspire me :) I hope year two brings you more well deserved attention! :)

April 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterAlyssa

Hi, Kelli,
Just wanted to let you know that I included your blog in my list for the Leibster Blog award. Your West Elm light is just AMAZING and I hope everyone from my blog gets to see it.

April 13, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterLisa

Thank you both for your kind words! I'm always blown away by how nice and supportive everyone has been. You all inspire me so much!

Xo, Kel

April 14, 2012 | Registered CommenterAHPCH

Well Kelli,
I would say earn an "A" for andvanced! You are amazing and so inspiring! I have really enjoyed your blog this last year! You have done an outstanding job!

April 15, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer Darbison

Ahhh, thanks Jen!

It's been so much fun (as you know from all of my stories I share at work, haha! )One of these days I'm going to get you to guest post to show off all of your amazing scrapbooking!

April 15, 2012 | Registered CommenterAHPCH

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