One year ago today, I nervously sat down at my computer, wrote a short essay about fitness, nutrition (and knitting; see if you can find the reference) at holiday time (it’s still relevant; Christmas is only 5 weeks away!) and hit ‘Publish’ for the first time.
As some of you know, WordPress rewards each new post with a cheerful announcement telling you how many words you just wrote and how many posts in total you’ve written. Groovy!
They also give you some ideas for your next post (which, incidentally, I’ve never used because they’re never topics that appeal to me, although yesterday’s first topic might be fun…).
Today, I wrote my 120th post. (I’m flabbergasted. Who knew I had so much to say?). And like every single time I hit ‘Publish’, for a moment I felt butterflies in my stomach. Worried about whether I’d got the wording right. Concerns that nobody would read it. Wondering why on earth I kept putting myself out there, exposed for all to see. (If you blog, are you nodding your head in agreement?)
I began this blog as a way of reaching out to my clients and class participants on the days they weren’t training or exercising with me. A way to coach them ‘virtually’ between sessions and classes. A place to celebrate their victories. A platform for education. A point of entry to the online health and fitness community. A peek at how I balance a busy life with family, clients, exercise and time for myself (that’s where knitting comes in).
Somewhere along the way, it became more than that. I made new friends and discovered many wonderful blogs. I rediscovered my love of writing.
Your comments and positive responses to my posts have made me realize that we share many of the same health and fitness concerns. That my challenges are not very different from your challenges. That the things I struggle with, you struggle with too. That many committed exercisers are also accomplished knitters (see comments to this post, which was, incidentally Freshly Pressed!).
To celebrate, I thought we’d have cake and presents. The cake, alas, is only virtual, but the presents are real, to you, from me! Shall we open them together?
A skein of my favorite luxury, hand-dyed yarn from Saffron Dyeworks (the yarn base is Enya, a lovely 2 ply merino sock yarn; makes beautiful shawls too; the color, Garden of Ireland);
A copy (gifted to me by Kara Thom and Laurie Kocanda; thanks!) of Hot (Sweaty) Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as a Fit Mom;
Having never done a giveaway before, I did what any conscientious blogger would do; scour the blogosphere for other giveaway posts to see what my options were.
Many giveaways require the winner to ‘subscribe to’ or ‘follow’ the blog. Since many of you already do and some of you might be inclined to based on content alone (wink, wink, nudge, nudge), I rejected this format. (Incidentally, if you haven’t already and do want to subscribe and receive email notification every time I write a new post, scroll down and enter your email in the ‘Subscribe’ box in the sidebar :).)
Others make ‘liking’ them on Facebook or ‘following’ them on Twitter the price of admission. This feels slightly coercive to me. Sure, ‘like’ (fitknitchick) or ‘follow’ (@ fitknitchick_1) me because you really like me and find what I have to say interesting, not because you want a chance to win a (great!) book or a skein of (fabulous!) yarn.
In the end, I decided that all you need to do to be entered in my blogiversary giveaway is to leave a comment at the end of this post. Let me know what you like (or dislike) about this blog and indicate which gift, the book or the yarn (or either, if you enjoy both exercise and knitting!) you’d like to receive.
I’ll leave comments open until the morning (my morning that is; I tend to wake up and check in around 6:30 am, PST) of Wednesday, November 23rd, at which time I’ll draw two names at random. Winners will be announced on the blog later that day. Best of luck!
My goals for year 2?
To increase discussion over each and every post. Of course, that requires my readers to not just read, but comment too! I’ll do my part and reply to anything you have to say (as long as it’s friendly and inclusive and family-friendly!).