I started my blog on 1 October 2008 (you can see this here and here ) so this is not my blogaversary. This is a post about blogging, my regular readers and what they mean to me.
In short, I love blogging. Firstly it's a journal of my day-to-day life with nostalgic posts when the occasion calls for it (like yesterday's post). It's also a platform for me to profess my love for the Lord Jesus who by Grace saved me and guides me constantly in my daily walk.
Secondly, by posting about what I do (mostly gardening) or the adventures - and sometime sad events - I experience, I'm honing my writing skills. Recently I read a statement in a writers' magazine: "Every word you write on your blog, is one word less for your great novel." Well, I beg to differ. On the contrary: if I scroll down through the archives I see that I 've posted (written) about things I would have forgotten had I not blogged about them. So no not one word I use on my blog is wasted. The majority of what I write here will be used in the many articles, books, short stories, how-to and travel features and non-fiction pieces which are bubbling inside my head!
The aspect I love most about blogging, is the friends I've made across the world. Some I may meet up with some in real life; others I will embrace when they arrive at heaven's gates. I love that I have personal contact with fellow bloggers via e-mail. I love that many have spoilt me and my grandchildren with gifts all the way from around the world.
In the beginning my posts were a little stilted. I was always concerned that readers wouldn't understand what I want to say. As the years pass and I learn to improve my writing style (through blogging and other media, like the afore-mentioned writers' magazine) I've relaxed a lot in my posts. I think we also get to know our regular readers, are grateful for the feedback via comments so it gets easier to blog.
I love having visitors to my blog and reading the comments. I used to reply to each comment on my post but due to time constraints, I don't anymore. I'd rather visit that person's blog (I love it when I click on a new name) and answer any questions there or e-mail them direct.
What I also love about blogging (there's nothing I don't like about blogging - I'm a positive rather than a negative, nagging lady, ha!- is that I can post my photos (literally thousands!) and write the story behind them. This helps me to remember the event.
I'm not all that confident using the gadgets and other technical aspects of blogger but I've added a fair amount. Recently I uploaded a mini-globe (the world) and am delighted to see visits (dots on various continents) and then flags from New York, (hi Lori!) Niamey (West Africa) - Esther, Manchester, Nottingham, (John Gray?) Cape Town, (dear Caroline and Desiree respectively) the Middle East (Missalyn) and more. Yesterday for the first time I saw the flag: Brussels (hoofstedelijk Gewest). Is that you, Gattina? Must be! The one flag I see most when I click on my own blog, is Bloemfontein, Free State, so I know I'm visiting me! BTW there are many more blogger friends than I've linked here, I just don't know what states would show if you visited me. So to Gaelyn, Pat, Sylvia, Diane, Betsy, EG WOW and more, thanks for visiting.
I only have 132 followers in comparison to people with the same blogging style as mine who have several hundreds. This doesn't worry me because I still love to blog, visit other blogs and connect with my fellow bloggers. Yet I trust that this year more people will add their profiles to my blog.
According to my stats, the most pageviews my blog receives, is from North America. Next is South Africa, United Kingdom, Sudan (huh? I never met or heard from a blogger in the Sudan!) Australia, Canada, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands, Russia and Brazil. Thanks everyone!
To date, the post with the most reads/pageviews was Stopover in Addis Ababa and the second most-read post was A Sudanese Wedding . Our last weekend in Khartoum and The Nubian Desert Treasures came in third and fourth. It sure looks like my readers enjoyed North Africa as much as I did!
So this post is dedicated to my regular readers and those who comment: thank you for your continued support. For those who read my posts only, why not take the plunge and add your name to the followers' box in the sidebar? I'd love to have you around.
Above all to everyone out there, never stop blogging.