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2nd-birthdayMy blog turns two years old today. I have to admit, I didn’t think very deeply about what I was doing when I started the blog, and didn’t know any more about blogging than what I’d read in a few articles with titles like Any Idiot Can Blog, or Get Blogging, Stupid! I had finished one part of my life and hadn’t started on the next bit, so a blog seemed like a good idea at the time.

When my account came up for renewal at the end of the first twelve months, I didn’t think twice about it. Of course I had to continue the blog; I’d only been doing it for a year, and felt I had barely started. When I received my second renewal notice at the end of last year, for the first time I actually sat down and asked myself if I wanted to keep going. I pondered deeply for over a month, and some days I seriously considered cancelling my account.

At last I decided that the blog was still growing, and I still had a lot to learn, so for the first time I made a conscious choice to continue Waltzing More Than Matilda. It’s taken me two years, but I have finally begun to think about what I’m doing. It will be interesting to see if this makes any difference!

Thank You, Thank You, to You and You and You

No blogger is an island, and many thanks go to these people for their help and support.

  • To Abby at Appellation Mountain, who for another year has sent me more views than any other blog. Abby’s generosity to others is inspiring, and it’s wonderful to see her go from strength to strength.
  • To Linda at Nameberry for giving me the opportunity to contribute my article, Aussie Names – Big there, not here. Thanks also to Angie at Upswing Baby Names, who was kind enough to provide an American perspective on the names I selected.
  • To Kate at Matilda magazine for inviting me to write an article on The Best Baby Name Blogs. Matilda magazine has been a very exciting innovation in the world of baby names.
  • To Michelle Horton from parenting website Babble for including Waltzing More Than Matilda in her article 20 Favorite Blogs for Baby Names. It came as a genuine, but very welcome, surprise to be mentioned alongside such great name blogs.
  • To Cristina at Once Upon a Time Baby Names for interviewing me about my name. Cristina has recently given her blog a complete reboot, and it looks amazing.
  • To Ebony at Babynameobsessed for being my most loyal commenter, and also reblogging several of my blog entries. Ebony is another Aussie name blogger.
  • To Lou at Mer de Noms for reblogging Boys Names of Australian Aboriginal Origin. Even after a big lifestyle change, Lou’s blog is still going strong.
  • To Brooke at Baby Name Ponderings for turning the 2012 Victorian name data into a fantastic spreadsheet. Brooke is another Australian name blogger, with very creative name ideas.
  • To my 140-odd subscribers, and my 50-odd Twitter followers, and to everyone who reads and comments and sends nice e-mails, and just all round makes blogging worth it!

Nerdy Number-Crunching

  • I have almost half a million views. The country which sent me the most views was Australia, which is good – it would be embarrassing to have a blog on Australian baby names that Australians didn’t read!
  • The most views I ever got were on June 21, when thousands of people suddenly all wanted to read about Jude Bolton’s daughter Siarra at the same time for some reason. As a result, this article was my most popular for the year.
  • The article which has gained the most comments is Girls Names of Australian Aboriginal Origin.
  • The most common search term was waltzing more than matilda, so I guess by now people do know about the blog.
  • The name most often searched for was Ruby, which reflects this name’s high popularity.
  • By posting this, I will have brought my number of posts up to 764. I have 23 categories and 618 tags. The most popular category was Name Themes and Lists.
  • There are 196 featured boys names, 192 featured girls names, and 119 featured unisex names, making over 500 names in total. About a hundred additions to the name database were made based on web searches people made to the blog, looking for baby names as familiar as Rose or Archer, and as unexpected as Australia or Zephyr.
  • The photo which was clicked on the most was the christening of Lauren Newton’s baby daughter Lola, which showed the entire Newton family together.
  • The most popular newspaper article linked to was the one announcing the birth of Addison, the son of ABC presenter Virginia Trioli.
  • The most popular website link was to ABC presenter Leigh Sales’ blog, Well Redhead, at The Punch.
  • The most popular document accessed was Australian Celebrity Baby Names 2011.
  • The most popular YouTube video was this one – basically my version of Rickrolling!
  • The blog on my Blog Roll most often clicked is Upswing Baby Names. Angie has a very professional-looking and practical name blog, and I’m glad to see it gaining such well-deserved interest.

Birthday Present

My present to Waltzing More Than Matilda is her own Facebook page. There are two main reasons I got one: (1) I promised myself I would once I got over 100 subscribers and (2) despite having a Twitter account, I get more views via Facebook than Twitter, so it makes sense. It seems much more complicated and scary than Twitter, but I’m sure I’ll get used to it in time.

Many happy returns, Waltzing More Than Matilda, and here’s to another year blogging together!