Thursday, December 29, 2022

things I am thankful for and your favorite blogs posts of 2022

Happy Thursday, friends! I thought I'd combine a couple of blog posts today and wrap up my 14th year of writing here in this wonderful community as 2022 comes to a close. Since it's Thursday, I'll be sharing the things I'm thankful for this week, but I'll also be sharing your favorite blog posts that I have written this year. (Do you look at the stats for your blog? They definitely tell a story!)

Before I start, does anyone else love the end and then the beginning of a year as much as me? I always love wrapping up a year and starting fresh with a new one. I also love new days, new weeks, and new months. I don't know what this says about me, but I love fresh beginnings. In one way, such a thing reminds me of the goodness of the Lord. There is a passage of Scripture that I love that I want to share. It's Lamentation 3:22-23 in the NLT version.

The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning. 

Isn't that beautiful? His mercies begin afresh each morning. And on that note, I'll start with what I'm thankful for this week. There is so much, but I'm going to condense so this won't be too long. Obviously what stands out most in my mind is last weekend. It was full of family, quality time, and moments I will never forget. My dad said the sweetest prayer at dinner on Christmas eve. Most of you know he is 91 and his health has not been the best in recent months. He got choked up while he was praying and that's all it took for me to do the same. He said something about how he was good with going home to Heaven at any time the Lord calls him there, which made me wonder if maybe this is his last Christmas with me here on earth. I've never told you this, but his mom died on Christmas eve when I was sixteen. I think of her every year on that night, needless to say. These memories and pictures below are what I am thankful for. I don't take a single day or few hours spent with Dad for granted. I took this first picture to send to my best friend Stacy. We were talking about her and I took advantage of the moment. 

I am so mad at myself at not getting this picture while Jonah was there. He had left at this point in the night to go to his girlfriend's house, but three of my sons with Dad is better than none. One thing I know: the older I get, the shorter life seems. I treasure all the moments the Lord gives me with Dad...with ALL of our parents. I am so thankful for them and that I see them so often. 

On a much lighter note, these pictures of my sons are also some what I am thankful for—not just the pictures, but for the memories that came with their antics. 

If only you knew how many pictures it took for us to get one or two decent ones. Andrew Myles (Drew) is such a goofball and also, I was mad at Graham while he was next to me (he's to the left of me as you look at the picture). Keeping it real! Even so, I am thankful for the moments. Below is Mom and me, and then Phyllis (my mom-in-love) and me.

Below is Trish, Mom and me and the next one is my nephew Devin (Trish's son).

Below is Drew with Mom, then Todd with his mom and him with mine.

I am so thankful for the gift of family and for fun moments, like when Mom, Trish and I went out shopping in the snow on Monday morning. We were dying to get out of the house and had a blast. Mom drove us around and we went to Hobby Lobby, then to lunch at McAlister's. 

Last but not least, I am thankful for YOU! Your comments and encouragement mean the world to me. Thank you for being a friend, a kind voice, a cheerleader, a confidante, and someone I respect greatly. Here are your favorite posts that I've written this year, beginning with number three. 

Number three was this Friday Favorites post from January 28, which had over 500 views. I'm not sure why it was so popular, but there's a video at the beginning of our choir singing an amazing song called Thou O Lord. You should listen to it, if you have some time! I talked about Drew's new truck and a goodie bag I sent him home with and I shared some other pictures. I talked about Oakley and shared my cute nails that I got to have for Valentine's day. 

The second most popular post that I wrote last year was a good one. It was the post from Shay's link party called Let's Look at Home Towns. This was from May 11th and had over 600 views. I talked about my beloved home town of Collierville, Tennessee.

And the number one most popular post in 2022 was this Dinner Inspiration post from February 15th—it had almost 1,200 views! Apparently, we all love and need some dinner inspiration. 

The theme I'm seeing is that you love practical posts and some more of the fun and frivolous posts, like those fun link parties we all know and love. You know the ones: Friday Favorites, Currently, Prime Purchases with Tanya. I am here for them all and I will continue with them in 2023! 

Would you believe that a year ago, I rarely had even one comment on my blog posts? I've noticed that when you take the time to read and comment on other blogs, they reciprocate that action. It takes time, but if you want to gain interest and readers who are happy to read what you share each day, pay attention to that and to them! I take note when people give me blog advice, like when Amy suggested I do a post all about lipstick. I appreciated that she cared enough to suggest that! Also per her suggestion, I've been digging around for some new blog content and I have some good stuff already planned in the new year! Just a few examples of what I have planned are more videos, behind the scene glimpses of blogging, books I read each month, getting over the holiday blues, what's in my purse and some top lessons I've learned in blogging (one that I just shared with you about the comments). 

This was fun for me to write and to think about—I hope it was for you too. 😉 If you have suggestions or requests for a certain type of blog post in 2023, I'd love to hear from you. I value your opinion and feedback. Thanks for reading my blog, friends! Love to all. 

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  1. Hope you don't mind me linking up - my "Best Of" really is what I am so thankful for this year!

    I love all of your new ideas and I went back and read your dinner post. I am the same! I appreciate good food and sometimes that is the food from your own kitchen. I would love to extend more hospitality in 2023. I am held back by my small entertaining space and a home that isn't "done" yet. But, I love to feed people and I love sitting around a table. Have you read Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequest? I highly recommend it!

  2. I'm so glad you linked up, Amy!

    Thanks for that! I would also like to be more hospitable in 2023. I had that thought last night as my nephew Tyler came over and sat to talk for an hour. I loved that and need more of it in my life. The table in our kitchen is my favorite spot in our home. I am held back because of our 4 dogs, but I decided I am not letting them atop me anymore.

    Thanks for sharing and for reminding me of that book. I've read it, but it's been so long that I need to read it again.

  3. Love the photos - especially the one of your dad and your boys. You'll never regret having those!

  4. I just commented to my husband the other day that if you blog well, it takes a lot of time. You're right, reading others' blogs and commenting is a must. I'm thinking I should go check my stats maybe. I hope you have a great day.

  5. Cathy, you are so right! You should check them out, just for your own amusement. It doesn't really matter to me which post is more popular than others, because I just write what comes to mind...but it is always kind of fun to know. ❤

  6. I didn’t find your blog until this fall, I believe, but it has become a favorite of mine! I remember in a post awhile back, you mentioned how a friend/mentor of your helped you find your fashion style. Could you do a post about that? I feel so out of it when it comes to clothes! 😂 You are always dressed so cute in your pics! Can’t wait to read more in the new year!

  7. Thank you, Mandy! I am so glad you're here. That is such a great idea for a post! I will write that down and start thinking about it now. I always love and welcome ideas for posts. You are so sweet to say that, but I have to laugh as I think back to just a few years ago, when all I wore were t-shirts with shorts or jeans. My friend did teach me a lot, and since then, I have found my way and personal style. I'm going to check out your blog now...but I'll see you back here next week! ❤️

  8. I loved reading this post. The family photos are wonderful. I'm definitely going to check out your post about dinners. I can always use more ideas. I'm so glad that I found your blog. I enjoy reading it!


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