17 From '17

Here we are again at the turn of the year! Already! 2017 has flown past me. I probably say that every year and I do think time seems to speed up the older you get, but honestly, this past year feels like it went in a blur.  It definitely doesn't feel like a year since I was cobbling together 16 From '16 and yet, here I am suddenly looking back again, before I begin looking forward to 2018.

Things with the blog have been a little bit different this year. I've had a lot less time to dedicate to it as I've been working on writing elsewhere (my book!) and starting up a second, Irish language, blog. I feel like this space was very neglected in 2017 and I'm slightly worried that I won't even have 17 things to talk about in this post! Let's see, shall we?:

1. Most Popular Blog Post

Scrolling through my 'stats' has revealed that my most popular post this year was one I wrote as part of a linky hosted by Awfully Chipper. Just a SNAPSHOT of what was going on in my life back in March. It's funny how different a snapshot it would be now - just 9 months later!

2. Favourite Post

As is usual with these things, that wasn't necessarily my favourite post to write. (Although I did enjoy it and think I should probably try that style more often considering you guys seem to have liked it too!) My own favourite post this year was about rediscovering some ancient snail mail. And I've actually sent some snail mail as a direct result since - NOSTALGIA FOR LETTERS.

3. Favourite Photo

I usually loathe photos of myself. I grew up with a photographer Dad and should probably have learned some posing skills over the years, but I never did. For some reason I still freeze and pull awkward faces whenever a camera looms. I do, however, like this one of me and my girls which was taken on the morning of their 7th birthday.
For good measure, this is my favourite of the photos that I've taken myself. It's one from the beach on Rutland Island in Donegal where we spent some time in August.

4. Best Adventure

My favourite adventure this year is one I never got around to writing about! We spent a week with my entire family in a rented house in Dingle, Co. Kerry to celebrate my Mum's 60th birthday. We expected it to be a  bit rough - considering there were 7 children under 7 (mine are the eldest on my side) and 9 adults all sharing one house - but it went really well and we all still love each other. It's one of my favourite parts of the country anyway so I knew I'd enjoy myself and happily my girls also loved it. In fact, they've decided we're going back next year too!

5. Favourite Craft

My favourite craft of the year isn't something I concocted actually. I am obsessed with the pieces Sábha makes, inspired by her favourite artist Sabine Timm. Click the picture below to check them out:

6. Most Common Theme

Errrmmmm.... due to a distinct lack of actual blogging there not much of a theme this year... unless you count Sylvanian Family reviews? 

7. Favourite Comment(s)

All of them. Always. And forever. Thank you for each and every one of them.

8. Favourite Celebration

L & S turning 7 was pretty special, as was my Mum's 60th birthday - but my Nana turning 90 earlier this month was absolutely gorgeous. Remind me to tell you about it some time!

9. My Best Move

Saying yes to a lot of opportunities that came my way this year - even though many of them scared the crap out of me. From speaking at the Children's Books Ireland conference, to making a series of craft videos for Aviva just two days before my book launch, to giving workshops in many schools, libraries and at literary festivals - it's been an incredibly mixed bag of a working year and I'm glad I've been brave enough to go for it.

10. Favourite 'Freebie'
Ah, the mythical blog 'freebies' that aren't ever actually freebies. First of all there's the work done to build up your blog enough that companies want to ask you to review things. Then there's the work of reviewing itself (writing/photographing/trying out the item/etc) and then - did you know bloggers have to put the value of any items they receive down as income on their tax returns?! Well, we do! Even if the item is only worth a couple of quid! 

I still enjoy working with brands regardless of the fact that I can't use a Sylvanian Family lighthouse to pay my electricity bill. This year I've been grateful especially to Netflix, Sylvanian Families, Martinhal for bringing me to Portugal and to DFS for bringing me to London and for giving me the yellow chair of my dreams:

11. Best Blog Moment

Probably having my book published?! Because Bí ag Spraoi Liom! is in Irish, it may not look exactly like it's linked to Where Wishes Come From in any way - but it really is. WWCF is the reason I started writing in the first place. It's the reason I gained the confidence to try different styles of writing. It's probably partially one of the reasons my publisher took a punt on me in the first place (having an established 'profile' is helpful for writers these days)! 

12. Worst Blog Moment

Not having enough time to blog consistently!

13. Favourite Title

'My Daughter Loves Virgin Honey' certainly turned a few heads...

14. Favourite Blog-Series

I didn't particularly have a series this year either (have I ever?!) but I did enjoy sharing my crafts. Click the picture below to see them all:

15. What I Learned in 2017

That if you keep going, keep trying, keep hoping, keep pushing yourself towards your goals - it'll eventually pay off. It takes a LOT of work and perseverance but it feels so good when it works out.

16. What My Blog Did For Me In 2017

It brought me conversations, support, a couple of trips of a lifetime, a lot of fun, some new friends... and, basically.... A NEW CAREER. As usual - A LOT!

17. The Biggest Surprise of 2017

That I'm still here! I've been blogging for over eight years now. I never even imagined that when I started. At times over 2017 I've toyed with the idea of stopping. There are lots of reasons behind those thoughts... but somehow I can't bring myself to do it quite yet... lets see what happens in 2018!

So, I've managed to find 17 things to talk about anyway! Even if I haven't technically blogged about all of them... If you've made it this far down the list you deserve a high-five! Thanks, as always, for reading, commenting, sharing and for being here. Big love and best wishes for 2018. 

If you're a blogger and would like to share your 17 From '17 - please feel free to link-up below by clicking the little blue button:


  1. I love this linky so much - delighted you did it again, and what a year it's been for you! This is a such a great recap and I love how it ties your new blog, Where Wishes and your book together - they are inextricably linked!

  2. What a year you've had!!! Many congratulations on the book and the new blog, and may 2018 be as exciting and fulfilling for you. Thanks for running this linky again, I'm about to get stuck in too, and I'll link up asap.


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