You guys. Today is a big day! Today marks the five-year anniversary of the day I cautiously served up my first blog post, inviting you all into my kitchen and my world, and hoping that you’d like it.
I’ve spent this week trying to figure out how to mark this occasion. There’s been quite a lot of late-night writing, re-writing, reading, and immediate deleting. In the course of that work, poignant memories unearthed themselves and forced their way to the forefront of my mind. I reminisced at length about the two months I spent developing the site, stumbling my way through the coding to get everything to look just exactly the way I wanted. I chuckled about the early days, when I spent most evenings perched on chairs or counter tops balancing a tripod precariously against the ceiling to get the shot I wanted, only to discover that the muted, incandescent light in my kitchen was the actual WORST. I looked back through my posts, clicking through them one at a time, amazed at the memories that each one elicits. The times and places they evoke.
A lot has changed. Since this date five years ago, I’ve switched jobs three times. Moved four. Lived in three different states with very different growing seasons. I’ve joined three community gardens and have failed spectacularly at three balcony gardens. I’ve swapped cheap Teflon pans for stainless steel, and my meager collection of college dishes has been supplanted by an arsenal of culinary tools for everything from canning to wedding cake baking. Recipes that I once perceived as daunting, showy meals have now worked their way into my regular weeknight rotation. My weekly pilgrimage to the farmers market for groceries is no longer a novelty but a way of life.
Food blogs don’t seem to be quite the craze that they used to be, and I long ago made my peace with the fact that I will not likely be the next Deb Perelman or Joy Wilson. But I still get such joy out of the cooking, photographing, writing, and sharing that happens on this little site. This blog has always been a creative outlet for me, but I hope you’ve gotten a little enjoyment out of it in the process too.
Speaking of enjoyment, I think I’m done waxing poetic for the day. There’s a balcony full of sunshine waiting for me, so it seems a shame to miss out.
Happy birthday, 30 Pounds of Apples! Here’s to another five years!
I have enormous respect for the power of marking a year, whether it’s a birthday, New Years, an anniversary, or a blogoversary. Anniversaries of any kind give us the chance to stop and think about how we’ve spent our time in the last revolution around the sun and what we plan to do in the next one. April 22 marked my three-year anniversary of this blog, and it sort of sneaked up on me. It turns out that I haven’t logged in to this site in over a month, due primarily to a significant case of writer’s block. And photographer’s block. And kitcheneer’s block.
The truth is I have struggled over the last few months. Despite the fact that I work fewer hours, have more days off, and enjoy a kitchen filled with natural light, I’ve found myself groaning over the notion of cooking even familiar meals and not in the least bit interested in climbing atop a step stool angling for a shot. The muse that once perched on my shoulder whispering words, recipes, and stories into my eager ears seems to have folded her arms and sealed her lips. I’ve become increasingly frustrated that I can’t seem to get back into the productive rhythm to which I had grown so accustomed in North Carolina and have spent a lot of time trying to figure out why. Did I really manage to pack up everything I owned but forget to bring with me my inspiration, my drive for sharing this locavore’s story? Is it still sitting on the counter in my dimly-lit kitchen, or perhaps hiding in the grass next to my ever-fertile community garden plot?
Or did it survive the move after all, frozen but intact despite this deeply unpleasant winter, but is simply too nervous to peek its head out for fear of another frost?
It’s Earth Day! I try my best to make every day an Earth Day, but I do so love that this pretty planet has a holiday all to itself. Over the years, I’ve celebrated Earth Day in a variety of ways: planting seeds in milk cartons to watch them grow, attending festivals where local food stands front and center, marathoning Wall-E and Fern Gully, or just getting outside to enjoy the sunshine and fresh air which we are so lucky to have.
This year, I have yet another way to celebrate: today marks the first birthday of 30 Pounds of Apples!
I know a year of blogging isn’t really a huge deal: some of the blogs I read have been pumping out new content for five, eight, or ten years. But a little over a year ago, when I published my first post, I was still trying to convince myself that this idea was sane. As it turns out, the cooking, photographing, gardening, writing, and sharing that go into this site have brought me more happiness than I ever expected.
I’ve spent the last few days reflecting on what I’ve learned over the last twelve months, where I’ve flubbed up, and what I’m looking forward to before the next blog-o-versary comes to pass. There are many methods by which I can sum up the last year, and I want to share a few of them with you.
So without further ado, consider this the first-year highlights reel of 30 Pounds of Apples.