It’s crazy to me that this is the very last day of 2015. To say that this year has flown by is a crazy understatement. This year has been marked with some major highlights, when it comes to this blog, and I wanted to give you a little review of our best moments so far!
When I launched Amidst the Chaos on January 8th, 2015, I really had no idea what kind of ride it would be. After struggling for two years to pick up the pieces of an abruptly-halted career, life in a new city and learning to cope with postpartum depression, I was ready for a fresh and GOOD year. Many of my friends had encouraged me for months to start blogging, saying that I had many great things to share with the world. Having lost much of my self-confidence from the fallout of 2013 and then struggling with PPD, I honestly wasn’t sure I had anything to offer and even if I did, would anyone really care? I don’t say that to play the victim card but rather to preface how I felt heading into 2015…unsure of what would transpire but desperate for a change.
I was almost immediately blown away by the support and interest that I received once the blog launched. So many of YOU were a part of that and for that, I am forever grateful! YOU have made this blog possible. YOU have helped turn this small idea into a huge success. So here are the highlights that YOU have been a part of!
Top Blog Posts:
1. I Need You Probably More Than You Need Me
This was one of my more honest posts, where I shared how difficult it can be, being the new family in town, without any family or friends. I honestly never expected such a huge reaction but this post was shared on Facebook by another blogger and received over 16,000 pageviews in a matter of five days!
2. How to Put Ribbon on Your Christmas Tree
At the beginning of November, I did a five day series on how to decorate your Christmas tree, from start to finish. I decided to do video tutorials to accompany the blog posts, really to just enhance the tutorial…so readers could really understand my explanations. I uploaded them to Youtube and just left them there. I never EVER expected that these videos would take off and get the kind of views that they have received. The video for this blog post has had over 106,000 views to date! That’s INSANE! And through this video going semi-viral, my Youtube channel has grown from 2 subscribers to almost 500 in ONE MONTH!
3. One Pot Butternut Squash Alfredo
I had come across a video on Facebook of this amazing dish and decided I would give it a try, tweak it a bit and share it with you all. With only having taken two quick pictures with my iPhone while making it for my family, I decided it was too good to not share with my readers. And to date, it is still my third most popular post!
Social Media Channels:
When I started the blog, I wanted to start brand new social media platforms because I wanted there to be a distinction between my personal pages and my blog pages. Therefore every platform was built from the ground up and I had to hustle all year long!
By far my favorite platform, my profile has grown from 0 to over 7,000 in less than one year! I’ve met some of my closest blogging friends via IG and the community I’ve grown into there has been so awesome!
Here is a look at my top three liked pictures from Instagram!
Facebook is by far my number one referrer to my blog. Although I got the most frustrated with FB, I have to admit that it’s been a HUGE asset to helping me reach my readers. FB limits my reach on my blog page, which is why I still share my posts on my personal page. To gain further reach, Facebook wants me to pay to boost my posts, which I will do from time to time.
This coming year, I will be focusing more on growing my reach on the blog page so that I don’t have to share so much on my personal page. One way that YOU can help me, is by going to the page and click the dropdown menu beside “Like” and select Notifications. Then you can choose which notifications you see. Just because you have liked the page, doesn’t mean you will see the posts because of the way FB restricts our reach.
Twitter was never a social media platform that I was into prior to the blog. With that being said, I’ve had a lot of fun growing this account and connecting with new people, including many big brands. I’ve also had fun joining in various Twitter parties! The first one was a little intense, but they’ve been a great way to connect with new people and even win some prizes!
YouTube was always the plan, from the very beginning of the blog. I actually signed up for a channel when I first started the blog and just left it there empty, until I was ready to start posting stuff. As I mentioned above, it really wasn’t until last month, when I uploaded my Christmas tree decorating series, where things really took off for my channel. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed making videos and I have some awesome plans for the New Year with YouTube specifically! So stay tuned…
Another amazing highlight for me was being asked to be on Rogers Daytime Dish in Durham. These appearances were my first TV appearances as a blogger and it was so much fun! Here is a short clip from one of the shows when we played a game! Much more to come in 2016 with TV!
It’s so hard to pick my favorite things from 2015 from the blog, as it’s brought so many incredible opportunities, working with amazing brands and developing awesome new friendships. Here are a few other random highlights that stick out to me:
1. Vancouver/BlogPodium Conference
My blog bestie, Jaclyn and I, won tickets to BlogPodium, a blogging conference, in Vancouver in September. Because of this, we finally got the chance to meet each other, in person, and experience the conference and Vancouver together!
2. Toronto Bloggers Soiree
As an old party planner, I’ve wanted to plan events for local bloggers to help foster the feeling of a collaborative community amongst us. I planned our first ever Toronto Bloggers Soiree and invited eight local bloggers who I had connected with throughout the year. It was an amazing night and I definitely have plans for many more in 2016!
3. Launching ATC Print Shop
After working on prints for the better part of the year, we launched the ATC Print Shop mid November. With a collection of 18 original prints, it’s been so fun to put these together and to see how far they’ve reached! We have some great new prints coming in 2016 and if you haven’t had a chance to check out the shop yet, make sure you do!
160+ Blog Posts | Over 70,000 Pageviews | Readers in over 140 Countries | 150,000+ YouTube Views | 600+ Email Subscribers | 14,000+ Social Media Followers
All in all, this year has been INCREDIBLE! As I sit here and reflect what has transpired with this blog, how many people it has reached, I am just blown away with the success it’s had. It hasn’t come easily but rather with a lot of hard work and long nights, but it has been definitely been in the top five most rewarding things I’ve done in my entire life. And this is only just the beginning! 2016…Amidst the Chaos is ready for you!
Love & Blessings,