2011 Musings

Wow! What a year! And I have you to thank!

I began this blog this past February and had no idea where this journey would lead. This blog started as a means for me to capture recipes I tried and wanted to save.  I wanted a venue in which I could hand down my family’s Slovak and Polish recipes down to my daughters. It began with humble intentions.

Then BAM!

FoodPress.com featured my Lazy Day Pot Roast recipe and I spent the day monitoring and accepting your kind comments! This one post changed everything. At first, I thought it was a fluke and then I checked my traffic to the site and was blown away by the numbers…

and your comments.

I became curiouser and curiouser and soon discovered other food blogs through food sites like Foodbuzz.com and FoodGawker that featured food bloggers around the world.

I experimented with a day of Peep making with a recipe from Butrcreamblondi’s blog.

Once again, Foodpress picked up my post.

Hmmm….I was on to something…

I began to realize what I didn’t know and began my journey of discovery.

I plunged into making the recipes of my Mother and Grandmother and embracing the work and love that went into everything they touched….like Strawberry Jam.

I became a featured publisher on Foodbuzz and revamped my site to include their advertising and promotions.

People (other than my loyal friends and family) started coming to my blog regularly and I was making friends with people I never met!

They encouraged me and shared their wisdom…

and I kept learning.

A local garden center – Graf Growers – asked me to do food demonstrations and cooking classes at during the summer…

and I said “YES!”

I made recipes like Grilled Corn

and more new friends.

I learned how important good photography is to a food blog…

and how much I didn’t know…

and how tricky food photography could be.

Many sites like Tastespotting were rejecting my photos and I couldn’t figure out why…

so began my journey in food photography.

(They did accept this photo for my Lemon Curd post!)

I bought props, lenses, Adobe’s software package – Lightroom and books…

with my favorite being From Plate to Pixels.

I took literally thousands of photos….for every good photo on my blog, there were 50 attempts playing with light, aperture and shutter speed.

I learned that camera raw eats ups hard drive space real fast…

I learned that I was saving my images in too big of a format (if you go to my earlier posts, you will see they take a while to download)…

all the while cooking and sharing my recipes…

and you kept coming back.

(Pineapple cupcakes was one of your favorites!)

Through this blog, I reconnected with my past as with my (ex) Mother-in-Law’s Mandel Bread recipe.

Nonni has recently passed on and it was my way to honor her.

I reconnected with my family as I made Mom’s recipes and began to appreciate the work and the love that she put into everything she served.

This blog was a way for me to thank them and share with you a bit of me.

And you would share with me your family traditions.

Recently I was at a holiday party and one of my friends said one of her favorite parts of the blog is reading the comments you made!

Because of you, I have found my passion again.

The way you get meaning into your life is to devote yourself to loving others, devote yourself to your community around you, and devote yourself to creating something that gives you purpose and meaning. – Mitch Albom

I have found all of the above because of my blog.

It is with a grateful heart, I wish you a day of reflection as we head into a New Year. I hope that most of your thoughts are filled with smiles and a sense of purpose.

Happy New Year my friends!

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