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October 8th, One Year Ago

October 8, 2008

It’s time to look back.  These are the first posts I ever made public on Fighting Windmills.  I signed up for a wordpress.com account in September 2007 so that I could have an avatar and started writing and saving drafts during the first week of October.  I published a bunch of them on October 8th, and told some online friends that my blog was ready to be read.  I wanted my blog to look rightly established and organized from the beginning, so that’s why I accumulated these six posts before going public.  I also published my About page that same day, and was working on my Peruvian Recipes page (which I update every once in a while) as well.

My Tattoo

We got our Ani DiFranco concert tickets!

What does quixotic mean?

Naptime

Escape Tunnels

Share With Me

At first I was using the theme Tarski, which I still like.  The version that wordpress.com offers however, has a bug in the code that make comments jump from one post to another.  Then the comments don’t make any sense because they are relevant to a different post.  When I realized that was happening, I switched to The Journalist.  I like it because it allows much larger photos and it looks nice.

I wasn’t quite sure how the categories and tags system worked, and I didn’t know not to hotlink to other people’s photos (I’ve since gone back and edited).  I had already figured out YouTube embeds and I knew I wanted to share my past, my present, and my future with you.  I am still negotiating those boundaries, like I can show you a picture of my tattoo, but I haven’t used my children’s names in print.  I still am not sure how much of me or of them to share.  My husband is upset that there is a picture of my tattoo on the internet.  It’s not about him, I insist.  The whole point of this weblog is that I decide what goes on and I find out what the boundaries are for myself.  I’ve still got a lot more to figure out about blogging (like memorizing some html code, for example).

I wish I would have thought to put a watermark and copyright on my personal photos from the very beginning, but I wasn’t that smart.  I’ve learned that I was smart to downsize my photos to less than 60KB each so that even a year later, I still have 99% of my upload space available on the wordpress.com servers.  And downsized photos of low quality are unlikely to be stolen for commercial purposes.  Infrequently, my posts get swiped by sploggers, but I think it doesn’t matter so much.

I was ecstatic about having my own weblog and left comments for others hoping that I could help shape a community where we all enjoyed each others company.  I used the tag surfer to find common interests, and I looked through the blogrolls of my friends who had been blogging longer than I had.  I found many wonderful people with whom I could interact that way.  I told Mrs. Metaphor that the link back to my blog which accompanies my comments is like a bowl of milk set out for stray cats.  “Here kitty, kitty.”  I think my strategy worked!  I feel really successful a year later.  Thank you for reading, commenting, encouraging, discussing, and validating Fighting Windmills.  I’ve learned so much, thanks to you.

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copyright Michael Hughes

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Check out the photography of Michael Hughes and his new book Souvenirs.  (Hat tip to Maya, who sent me the link to Michael’s photo.  Photograph of brass Don Quixote souvenir used with permission.)

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12 Comments
  1. October 8, 2008 8:23 am

    You’ve done a great job this year, FW…well done!

  2. October 8, 2008 9:44 am

    Happy blogoversary!

  3. October 8, 2008 10:18 am

    Thank you, Mrs. Metaphor.

    Thank you, Teena. You must have found my blog through blogoversary.com. Thanks for coming by to visit.

  4. October 8, 2008 11:09 am

    Wow, happy anniversary (oh, maybe I’m supposed to say blogoversary). I didn’t realize you’d only been blogging for a year. Your strategy of having a few posts up and having put thought into how you want your blog organized from the beginning really worked, I’ve assumed you’ve been at this for at least a couple of years now. Well done – keep on tilting at the windmills!

  5. October 8, 2008 12:18 pm

    Congrats on your blogiversary! You sure put a lot of thought into how you started up your blog. I was much more haphazard about the whole thing 🙂

  6. October 8, 2008 5:39 pm

    I’m definitely the haphazard sort as well! Plus about 80% of the people I “hung out with” when I first started have stopped blogging in the meantime. Oh well!

    About the HTML, let me know if you ever have any questions. My strength is more along the lines of straight java, but I’ve been doing a large amount of web-based programming (html, css, jsp, js, python, etc) in addition to the normal java at work this past year or so. So I’ve gotten comfy with the html basics, which is all you’d be interested in at this point! Unless you buy the css upgrade, which does make for a fun way to play with CSS. WordPress does make sure their themes use semantic html, which is sooo nice.

    And if you want a small but clear reference book for html, I’d recommend html and xhtml: pocket reference published by o’reily. I have it at work, and I use it quite a bit. Of course you can find it all online as well. There is something (maybe my advanced age) about thumbing through a book, sometimes!

    Anyway, you’ve done a great job with your blog! Can’t believe it has been just a year!

  7. October 8, 2008 6:10 pm

    Its been a good year. I dug this blog from early on because of your frankness and friendly demeanor. A couple of comments relating to your earlier posts (because I had not read them until now): sweet tat and I don’t feel so bad for abandoning Don Quixote halfway through. Here is to many more posts marking your reality tunnel impressions of our shared universal consciousness.

    Johnny Peepers

  8. Lofter permalink
    October 8, 2008 6:52 pm

    I just think you’re awesome. And I’m grateful to you for sharing the parts of your life that you choose to share with us here in the blogosphere. Well done, my friend… well done, indeed. 😀

  9. October 8, 2008 7:11 pm

    Happy Blogoversary! I celebrate mine in about 5 days. I enjoy your blog a lot. It’s been great meeting such nice people like you. I can truly say I have more true friends in blogland than in Falmouth. Congrats!!

  10. October 9, 2008 8:27 am

    Happy blogoversary!!! You Do have one of the coolest blogs ever. ROFL that you started your public blog with SIX posts to appear all official & junk. What a peek into your psyche! 😉

  11. October 9, 2008 9:25 am

    happy blogoversary!
    thanks for sharing a glimpse into your life. well done!
    here’s to the next year 🙂

  12. October 10, 2008 8:26 am

    You all are such treasures to me! Thank you for your lovely comments.

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