Saturday, August 30

Eight Years On

Eight years ago today, (30 August 2006) I started this blog. At that point I was just exploring what a blog was. My reasons were partly work related, partly as a way of communicating with plotters on our site and partly just because I like playing with new ideas.

I had no idea that people that I hadn't personally met would read anything that I had posted and certainly didn't expect any comments (other than flippant comments from fellow plot holders on our site). I certainly didn't expect anyone to 'tune in' regularly and actually become a follower. I didn't even know what a follower was but once I became aware that people were actually visiting and reading what I had written I knew that I had to step up my game.

Like everything, as you become more experienced you become more dissatisfied with the rubbish that you initially produced. You scrap things that at the time you thought were significant achievements for something better. No doubt if I am still blogging eight  years from now things will have changed considerably.

I didn't expect to become part of a community of bloggers - a community that extends around the world - a bit like having a group of penpals but only having to write one letter to communicate with them all. Now there are 289 followers using Blogger (will you be number 290 and will I achieve 300 this year?), besides the 67 using Google+, 74 using Bloglovin and those who follow using email, Facebook or Twitter. I know some will be duplicates but I still find it all rather incredible.

Exchanging comments with fellow bloggers also means that I feel that I have gradually got to know them as real people. I've also learned about other countries and cultures from like minded people from across the globe. The first comment from outside of our allotment site was from Lisa and Robb from California which was a WOW. I moment. I'm happy to say comments still sometimes come from 'them'. When I last looked there have been 16,365 comments - HUGE WOW! It still incites a bit of a wow when I see a comment from someone new. I always visit new commenters' blogs and find new favourites this way.

Below are last week's stats. that make for amazing reading. The most important to me are the returning visitors. Many of the others could have just ended up on my blog by accident and quickly rushed off somewhere else.

Not only does this week complete eight years of blogging but another landmark is that this week my Wordless Wednesday post was  my 1,500th

To mark the 'occasion' I have a couple of giveaways which are unfortunately due to postage issues only available to UK visitors, (I'm really sorry about that).

Firstly is a collection of 30 tulip bulbs from Sarah Raven worth £13.95
These will be sent direct to the recipient and will be dispatched later in autumn. In the event that this collection, for some reason, goes out of stock a suitable replacement will be found.

The second giveaway is a £20 voucher to spend on the Harrod Horticultural website. 
You can just browse the website and choose - some possibilities are shown below.
If you wish you can use it towards something more expensive but remember to take P and P into account.

The winners will be drawn at random from everyone making a comment below on this post. The closing date for comments is midnight Saturday 6 September and the winner will be announced on the blog shortly after. Good Luck! 

Thanks for reading and I hope that you stick around so we can get to know one another better.


33 comments:

  1. Congratulations! EIGHT YEARS WOW!
    Just about to try your courgette fritter recipe..wish me luck
    Gill

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    1. Hope the fritter recipe worked, Gill

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  2. Congratulations on reaching 8 years for the blog!

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  3. "Firstly is a collection of 30 tulip bulbs from Sarah Raven worth £13.95"

    I thought that was a question - to which the answer is obviously NO! You might want to edit the "is" out!!

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  4. Congratulations Sue! A well-deserved success.

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  5. Wow congratulations on so many years. I've only been blogging for six years. And like you I didn't really know what I was getting into. I love the blogging community. And I love that it is world wide. I get to see what gardening is like in all sorts of places.

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  6. You've done a great job over the years, not only with your substantial sized plot and all you've grown, but with your blog and all the information you've been able to share... This has been a great resource and I've really enjoyed your articles. Excellent job and hope you will keep it going for many more years to come. All the best, Kelli, Northern Ireland.

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  7. Congratulations Sue, 8 years and 1500 posts is an incredible achievement. And look at your stats, wow! And you also take the time to reply to everyone and visit other peoples blogs, which I always admire, especially as so many people comment on your posts. You've been a real supporter of mine too, which has been very much appreciated! I'll continue to be a regular reader as long as you continue to write a blog :)

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    1. I think the replying helps establish a personal connection Lou as dies exchanging visits

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  8. I feel the same as you about the growth of my blog, it is just like having pen pals. I had some as a child and always felt very excited when a letter from one of them dropped through the letter box.
    I think the blog world is great and brings so much to so many. Long may we all stay connected.

    Jean x

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  9. Congratulations on your blog anniversary, Sue! I really appreciate the interest it provides us all - not to mention fab photos and lots of useful advice. Best Wishes for the next 8 years!

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  10. Many congratulations, that's some feat. I always enjoy my visits here and I've learnt lots of things through your posts over the years. Good luck for the next eight years, I'll be reading along. I don't really keep a track of my visitor stats, I'd love to know how you get daily figures like that. Great giveaways, those tulips are beautiful and Harrod Horticultural is a site I visit often.

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    1. I use a free utility called statcounter.com, Jo and it emails me the stats every Monday. You can also login to your account and get more information too. There's also Google Analytics. It's interesting to browse now and again.

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  11. congratulations on 8 years of blogging you encourage me no end Awesome thank you for sharing have a blessed week

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  12. Well done Sue. I love reading your blog, keep up the good work!

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  13. Wow, eight years of blogging, that's fantastic, you should be very proud of your achievement. I imagine the blogging world has changed quite a bit in those eight years. I'm so glad I discovered your blog, I've learned so much here, and I always enjoy reading your posts. Thank you for all of the time and effort you put into it. CJ xx

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  14. Love the blog. So much information. Thanks for all your effort and wonderful articles.

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  15. Wow, eight years! Congratulations! That’s a long time blogging! I spent the first 6 months mainly talking/writing to myself – although I had visitors according to the statistics, my first comments didn’t arrive until quite late in the first year. But since then I also feel I am part of a community and I have got to know a lot of people I would never have done without blogging. Happy anniversary Sue, here’s to another 8 years blogging!

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  16. Many followers and readers, Sue. It's success!

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  17. Sue, that is a fantastic achievement and you must be very proud ! It is a great blog and I always read your posts! I have only been blogging for about 18 months but already enjoy the interaction with people like yourself, all over the world .

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  18. Well done, enjoy reading your post.

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  19. Many congratulations on eight years of blogging Sue! I started nine years ago but was shy and did not reveal myself to the public until 2008 :) Long may your little patch of blogland continue to flourish.

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    1. When's the tenth birthday Anna - we should hold a blog party

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  20. Wow! Congratulations, eight years eh? That's something. Well, here's to the next eight, now you have a glass of wine on me!xxx

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  21. Congratulations on eight years of blogging and your 1500th post...wow! Thank you for all your efforts and interesting posts. Here's to another eight years!

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  22. Eight years blogging takes real dedication - as well as an awful lot of free time! Well done Sue, you've kept your blog entertaining and informative with fabulous photos; it's always a pleasure to read your latest posts … and of course I look forward to your comments, always to the point and your famous spelling mistakes! (whoops, nearly did it myself then!) Congratulations on this landmark and cheers! to the next eight. Caro xx

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    1. Typos, Caro, the brain can spell but the fingers can't :)

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  23. Forgive the group reply bit for most the reply would be the same "Thank you for your really generous comments and I wish that you could all win in the draw."

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  24. eight years of blogging? Taht's really a "WOW"! Thumb up to you. Your blog is really interesting and have so much of knowledgeable information too!

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  25. 8 years of blogging plus running that large allotment terrific work both of you

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  26. Congratulations Sue. Thank you for sharing your gardening knowledge with everyone. for the past 8 years. Please continue as I still have a LOT to learn.Take care now. Marion x

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  27. Always enjoy reading your blog albeit being a silent reader. Congratulations on your 8th Blogging Anniversary!

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    1. You are most welcome TG silent or not.

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