My goodness it has been a year already. A year since I started this little old blog. Where has the time gone?
A little over a year ago, while on our trip to Normandy and Ypres, I talked with L about creating a blog to start documenting our travels. Shortly after returning home from that trip I hit ‘publish’ on that first post and today I’m publishing my 103rd post!
In this past year I’ve gone from using a Blogger to self-hosting on WordPress. I’ve changed the name from ‘Have Books, Will Travel‘ to ‘One Trip at a Time‘ (thanks L for that great suggestion!), and my blog has evolved from more than simply a travel journal and now includes travel tips, itinerary suggestions, a record of my progress towards achieving my travel goals, and a whole lot of London Love. I’ve also learned a ton about blogging- like SEO, WordPress plugins, self-hosting, and even hashtags (as I get more into social media). It really is amazing what you can learn and do in the span of only one year.
While originally planned to be a place to keep a record of our travels, I have gotten so much more than that out of blogging in the past year.
- I have loved reminiscing about all the things I’ve done on each trip, including some of the really memorable moments I’ve shared through words, or simply photos.
- I have connected with some really interesting people around the world and absolutely love it when they pop in with a comment on one of my posts either because the appreciated the tip, enjoyed the story, and especially when they have advice and antidotes to share with me. A special hello goes out today to the two lovely ladies who have commented the most over the past year- my friend Monica and a fellow blogger, Meredith who blogs over at Ponder the Irrelevant. Monica calls herself the president of my fan club :-) and always has such sweet comments and great ideas to share with me. And Meredith keeps me hooked on her blog with all the cool photos she takes and tales she tells about the neat places she visits. She also has me moving Arizona further and further up my travel wish list with her stories from there.
- I have learned a ton of tips and tricks for traveling as I read some of my favourite blogs each day. Likely the biggest travel tip I’ve learned this year has been to use Airbnb. This has saved us quite a bit of money for accommodations, enabled us to have more space and comfort for our money, and allowed us to see how locals live. So far we’ve booked six places with it (Canada and France), and I don’t see us stopping any time soon, especially as I have a handful saved to favourites for California, Berlin, and Belgium. If you haven’t tried it out yet and would like a $25 credit to put towards your first booking please feel free to email me and I’ll send you a link.
- I have gotten out to see and do more. While traveling to different cities would have been a given without the blog, some of the trips have been nudged along a little because of the blog, especially with the goals I posted at the beginning of the year on the blog- like my #Take12Trips goal (which has been incentive for the kiddo and I to take our little road trip to Dallas, TX in February and an upcoming trip to Austin, TX in April) and my Global Eats goal.
- I now have a place to keep up with all my travel goals. With so many, like visiting 100 countries, visiting 500 UNESCO sites, reading a book from all the countries in the world, etc. I love having a place to organize them and keep up with them. Much better than the ‘writing them on a sheet of paper that gets lost for months’ approach I’ve had in the past.
- And last, but not least, blogging has been a great hobby to help make the days go by quicker between trips and visits with L. It keeps me looking forward to the next exciting adventure we’re going to have, instead of dwelling on the fact that we’re not in the same country at the moment. It also gives us lots to talk about and L has been so supportive and patient as I sometimes do rattle on and on about the blog this or blog that. :-)
I have really enjoyed sharing my travel stories and tips with everyone that has popped in this year and I’m really looking forward to where One Trip at a Time will go in its second year!