94 posts & 264 photos later I am proud to say that today is my first anniversary of blogging!
…And after all that cooking and eating – I am still not full. A true foodie always has her mind on the next meal and that is true for me. But it can be hell on a girl’s waistline.
How it all began
2008 was a very good year for me and tomatoes. My back yard pots were producing like crazy even in the waning days of summer. So I was innocently searching the internet for a recipe to somehow preserve them through the winter when I came upon the most gorgeous picture of oven roasted tomatoes ever. It was love at first sight.
But it was more than a photo. There wasn’t a just recipe; there was commentary and comments from others, with entries dating all the way back to June 14, 2006! ! OH NO! I was late to the party!
My small, little kitchen world had just been blown open by the discovery of this blog phenomenon. There were actually others out there like me, cooking, eating and writing about it! Soon I had subscribed to that blog by email and was devouring each posting as soon as it came out. Not long after that I was bold enough to actually leave a comment. Before you know it I was submitting photos for a weekly segment featuring reader’s pantries. I even won a give-away prize! And one day when I clicked on a person’s comment link out of curiosity I discovered the real power of the blogosphere. My future favorite design blog had submitted her pantry for the weekly segment. What a discovery. I spent two days catching up on all her prior postings.
However, like all good things, after a while it wasn’t enough. I wanted to be part of this movement. Part of this grass-roots community of like-minded folks who I talked about in first person as if they lived next door. (Doesn’t everybody do that?)
I can blog too.
I set about researching the process. It didn’t seem that hard. I wouldn’t even have to learn HTML. I didn’t tell anyone at first. I spent many afternoons “supposedly working” but really I was busy securing my own domain. (THE NAME WASN’T TAKEN YET – a sure sign that it was meant to be!) Who would host my blog? I decided to go with WordPress because they got great reviews and seemed the most user-friendly. The day I came home and announced that Cabinet Stew was “live and on the internet” my husband ran around the house yelling that his wife would soon be famous. Slow-down big fella… this is just a fun way of recording my cooking adventures.
These days, as my husband can attest, life with a food blogger (yes, I call myself that, even if I have less than a dozen daily hits.) can be a challenge. For instance now he has to wait for his dinner while the “beauty shot” is taken. But I love being part of it all. I finally feel like one of the cool kids.
Seven things I learned in a year of blogging:
- Always bring your real camera to family functions with food. The cell phone camera just doesn’t take great photos.
- Find a focus for your blog and stick with it – because it is hard to stand out in a crowd.
- Even if your friends and family subscribe their emails to your blog, they aren’t always reading it. (You know who you are.)
- Not every meal is worthy of a blog posting.
- Don’t change the format of your blog too often because you have to go back and double check each posting.
- Anything more than 300 words and you are at risk of putting folks to sleep.
- My cat “cutie” loves my cooking.