This is the other baby that has taken up so much time and attention and nurturing. No, I didn’t say nursing.
My bouncing baby blog is 6 months old. Hard to believe it’s been six months since that fateful day in June when I happened to mention on FB that I had done some writing to release stress and was considering starting a blog.
I know everyone celebrates their blogoversary, commemorating their first year, but when I was growing up we always tried to convince our parents that a half-birthday was a real thing, worthy of cake and balloons and gifts. Since I’m the grown up, I get to decide. I’ve come to the conclusion that a half-birthday IS a thing. Seems I was right all along.
Just like any other birthday celebration, there’s the inevitable inception story and health check up. The story of how Baking In A Tornado came about was told in my first post, Can I Blog? but really the inception was a process of being cajoled by friends on FB. It went like this:
On 6-14-12 I posted on FB
I’ve written three blog entries! I just haven’t posted them. After giving Google every iota of personal information I never wanted to give anyone, signing up for a new email account I don’t want and receiving a secret code on my cell phone despite not wanting to give them that number, I’m officially overwhelmed with how to set it up . . . and stuck on a name . . . I need aspirin.J: I gave my blog name little thought - and now it’s stuck somehow. Don’t over think.
MM: I agree
J: Just post them. The first one is definitely the hardest to post . . . do it!
Me: I just don’t know if I have the balls OR maybe I’ll be famous as the first person whose blog no one reads!!! Thinking about a few names, or maybe I’m just procrastinating due to the aforementioned balls issue.
K: You don’t need no stinking balls!!! Go for it. I would read your blog, as I find you quite hilarious. Though if you post a lot of pictures of what you bake I may get fat by osmosis.
Me: Thank you, K. If you read my blog I won’t be the first to have a blog that no one reads. Maybe I can become famous for having a calorie free blog zone?
J: I sense over thinking. Post it. Put a link on your FB page . . . there is zero to lose.
Me (later): I did it, I did it, I really, really did it . . .and as predicted my first choice for a name was taken . . . I need more aspirin . . .
The inevitable FB birth announcement:
6-14-12 Karen B announces with joy the birth of her bouncing baby blog. Murphy’s law of my life dictated that my first choice for a name was taken. Please stop by and visit my hard-labored bundle of joy, all you have to lose is a few minutes of your time. As an added incentive (OK, bribe) there’s a few personal shout-outs in there: Baking In A Tornado.
R: I love, love, love it! It’s the perfect name, the perfect vehicle for you to relieve stress.
MP: Fabulous keep it up! I think you should have people who join in the blog be able to order FREE food samples from you; just sayin’.
K: Love it! (Thank goodness you really can’t gain weight by looking at food).
E: U should send me a care package.
Me: Thank you, thank you, thank you. Free samples always available on a “come and get it” basis. I’ve tried to mail them but the kids tackle me on the way to the post office. Follow me, I need someone else to do it of their own free will!
You know how excited new Moms can be, so on 6-15-12, a second announcement:
I started a blog yesterday. I debated whether to even do it. I wrote my initial piece and edited it and re-edited it and re-edited it. I worked on the font, the color, the size, the name (and then another name when that one was taken). I changed the layout (6 times). I posted it, then I posted about it. I was supposed to make dinner too?
Later on 6-15-12, baby’s first gift arrived:My blog has a follower!! So what if she’s related, it still counts. I also have 139 pageviews. Does that mean the other 138 people didn’t like it?
R: I’m going to forward you some emails I received regarding your blog. All good.
Me: Hey, I had the baby and you’re getting the cards, what’s with that?
And now for the check-up:
Baking In A Tornado has over 270 followers. 65 posts have been published with almost 20,000 page views. It has a twitter account with over 450 followers and a FB page with over 700 followers. Twenty blogger awards have been gratefully received as well as 6 recipe features and numerous features in on-line newspapers. It now even has it’s own domain (thank you A Little Unhinged)! It’s been featured on the web site Treat a Day. I’ve done 3 Guest Posts on other blogs, and hosted one myself. I’m a contributor to a collaborative blog, The Epistolarians. I’ve conceptualized, initiated, and continue to run 2 monthly group-participation posts: The Secret Subject Swap and the Fly on the Wall challenge.
The toast (raise your glasses, please):
Although this is not a hugely successful blog by blogging standards, it has well exceeded my expectations. I don’t take all the credit, I enjoy an amazing group of instigators and supporters to whom I am very grateful. I fully intend to do a shot in honor of each and every one of you.
And finally, the confetti:
Confetti Slice and Bake Cookies
1 stick butter, softened
1 stick margarine, softened
3/4 cups sugar
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup multicolored jimmies (sprinkles)
1/4 cup multicolored nonpareils
*Cream butter, margarine and sugar.
*Beat in egg and vanilla.
*Mix in flour, baking soda and salt.
*Gently mix in the sprinkles and nonpareils. Try not to break up the sprinkles.
*Divide the dough in half and roll into two (1 1/2 inch around) logs.
*Wrap the logs separately in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 1/2 hours (can refrigerate for a few days or even freeze for a few months).
*Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
*Slice cookies into approximately 1/4 inch rounds.
*Place on cookie sheet and bake for about 12 to 14 minutes. Once they start to brown they’re done.
*Cool 2 to 3 minutes on the cookie sheet before removing.