It’s my anniversary! My blogging anniversary, that is. Two years ago today, with eager excitement and even more trepidation, I hit Publish on The Merry Momma and the blog went live. There was no going back. My words were out there for the world to see.
In those two years, a lot has happened. I announced my second pregnancy, I shared my nervousness about adding a second child, and then I shared my struggles to adjust once he came. I opened my heart on some personal subjects and was deeply encouraged by the responses. I also received my first harsh comments. I publicly invited everyone to watch me learn and grow as a wife, a mother, and a homemaker. And I learned a LOT about blogging, business, and the work-at-home life (which is no. joke.)
I’ve spent many, many nap times, early mornings, evenings, and weekends in front of my computer. I’ve sacrificed tv time, reading time, and even time with friends and family (though I try not to do that too often). I’ve kept working when all I wanted to do was procrastinate and veg out. And way more than once, I’ve asked myself whether it was all worth it. Whether I was good enough, whether I had what it took, whether I was being a bad mom or wife for taking the time to work on this blog.
But I would do it all again.
Am I where I want to be? No. Do I sometimes question whether all this time and energy is wasted? Absolutely.
But The Merry Momma is about so much more than making a side income or creating a platform or even building a foundation for some of my bigger goals. I started The Merry Momma to do all those things, yes, but for so much more than that. I started it to be a place to encourage moms (mostly myself!!) to embrace motherhood with joy and intention. To be a place of encouragement, inspiration, assistance, and fun as we all journey through the exciting, challenging, rewarding, and scary road of motherhood. Together.
I truly believe in the power of sharing all aspects of life with each other — the good, the bad, and the ugly. When we feel alone in our struggles, we buy into the lie that we are failing. When we look at Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest, it’s easy to feel like we are inadequate. But when people are brave enough to show the less-than-glamorous parts of their life, that helps us realize that we aren’t alone, we aren’t worse than everyone else, and we aren’t failures. And it gives us the strength and courage to give ourselves some grace and then learn and grow and work on a better tomorrow.
And that, friends, is what The Merry Momma is all about. And I hope that’s what it has been for you.
To celebrate both the new year AND this blog’s second anniversary, I’ve compiled a list of the 10 most popular posts of 2017. I wrote 103 posts in 2017 alone, so it was hard to choose! But these are the 10 that received the most visits, comments, and feedback.
I hope you enjoy this look back at The Merry Momma this past year.
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THE MERRY MOMMA’S MOST POPULAR POSTS IN 2017
- 7 Habits I Wish I Would Have Adopted Years Ago
Maintaining a well-kept home used to be such a struggle for me, but now, because of these seven habits, I finally keep a home that is clean and tidy enough to be comfortable, relaxing, and welcoming!
- How I Fixed My Diastasis Recti: A Review of the MUTU System
At four months postpartum, I still looked as pregnant as the day I came home from the hospital. Learn about my experience with the MUTU System and how it helped me fix my diastasis recti.
- 7 Things I Wish I Had Known Before My Second Baby
Expecting your second child? In this sequel to my popular post 7 Things I Wish I Had Known Before My First Baby, I share 7 lessons every soon-to-be-mom-of-two should know.
- 25 Gifts for Toddlers That Won’t Be a Waste of Money
Many well-meaning Christmas gifts either get forgotten about within a week or drive parents bonkers! Not these gifts for toddlers! These will be a win for everyone!
- How to Rock Your Next Family Vacation
I asked over 20 seasoned moms to give me their best advice for traveling with kids. What they gave me produced a GOLD MINE of tips that will be sure to help you rock your next family vacation!
- 15 Highly-Nutritious Baby Foods You Haven’t Thought to Try
(The entire Baby Food series was very popular)
One of the benefits of making your own baby food is that you can introduce a wider variety of foods. Here are 15 of my favorite unconventional baby foods. PLUS, a free “baby & me” family meal plan download!
- How to Make Your Own Chicken Stock
Homemade chicken stock is so much better for your body (and your wallet!) than the store-bought variety. And it’s really quite simple, too! In this post I will walk you through, step-by-step, how I make and can my own chicken stock.
- 20 Rejuvenating Scriptures for Weary Moms
Are you tired and worn out? Do you need some new life in your motherhood? Meditate on these 20 inspiring and uplifting verses for weary moms!
- 10 Favorite Instant Pot Recipes
I love my Instant Pot and use it several times a week. Here are 10 of my favorite Instant Pot recipes! They are all family tested and approved!
- Bumbo Vs. Sit-Me-Up: Which One is Better?
If you are a new or expectant mom, I’m sure you’ve seen Bumbos everywhere you look. But you may have also seen the Fisher Price Sit-Me-Up Floor Seat. Perhaps you’re wondering which one is better and which one you should get. We have used both, so I’m going to share my experiences with you – and the pros and cons of each one – to help you make the best decision possible.
As I look back through this list, I am amused by the variety. In my blog research, I often see “experts” advise bloggers to “niche down” — which means focusing on a narrow topic and writing on only that subject. I’ve thought quite a bit about whether my focus is too broad — I mean, I’ve got book recommendations, canning tips, gardening advice, health & fitness resources, recipes, and a lot of personal essays on motherhood. It’s a bit of an eclectic blog, to say the least, and I’ve thought a lot about narrowing it down.
But I just can’t do it! Not only are these all things I love and love to talk about, but this is motherhood. Hello! We wear a LOT of hats. We are gourmet chefs, nurses, chauffeurs, housekeepers, laundresses, and financial advisers … not to mention the jobs that many of us do outside the home!
So The Merry Momma will continue in the next year to speak to that variety of roles and responsibilities. It may not be what the “experts” recommend, but I know it’s what I would want in a mommy lifestyle blog. And I always try to give what I would want from another blog.
I hope 2018 is even better than the previous year for The Merry Momma. I hope it continues to grow. I hope I continue to improve as a writer. And I hope it leads me to new opportunities that scare me as much as they grow me.
But mostly, I hope that it continues to speak and encourage moms to embrace motherhood with joy and intention. I hope that it speaks to the parts of them that are tired or scared or insecure. And I hope it inspires them to continue to strive to be the best moms they can be.
I sincerely thank all of you who have been faithful followers for the past two years. I appreciate and treasure every single note, comment, and thoughtful message. You make this journey worth taking!
Here’s to 2018 and a great third year at The Merry Momma!
Your Merry Friend,
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