Happy Birthday blog

Today my blog is one year old.

For twelve whole months now I have been sharing some of the random thoughts that pass through my mind, amusing you with my dating horror stories, revealing my selfish attitude to parenting, and revolting you with my talk of smear tests.

During the year, my blog has been looked at 61,153 times, produced 165 posts (not including this one), attracted 3,270 comments and won one actual real life award. Generally I’m pretty pleased with how it has gone, especially as I started it on a bit of a whim, never having read a blog before, and with no real idea of what I wanted or hoped to achieve.

My initial posts, which were read on average by about three people each, seemed to set the tone of the blog, featuring confessions of how I hide dishes in cupboards and slip my children paracetamol at bedtimes. Bee likes to mock me now about my blog – “Oh Mummy,” she says if I don’t wash up for a while, “you’re so SLUMMY, you should write about this…” Har har. My most viewed post by far is Bee’s birth story, written when I was just 17.

One of my favourite posts was the story of Prince Charming. It isn’t funny or sarcastic or slummy in any way, but I was really touched by the reaction it got and the emails I received about it. It’s the one post I’ve written that I feel may have made an actual difference to someone else’s life. Even if it is just a small difference, it felt like I had done something good.

So, one year on, where do I go from here? It is probably to be expected, given my supposed fickleness, that I would get bored sooner or later, but I’m not sure I’m ready to give up yet. Perhaps it’s just a lull, perhaps my blog needs a rest, or maybe it’s that I met someone recently who makes thoughts of everything apart from him seem to fade to a blur at the back of my head. Who knows…

Blogging about blogging is, I know, one of the cardinal sins, and has ‘self-important, boring loser’ stamped all over it, but you will have to forgive me today, on my blog’s very special day, because I look at myself now, and I look at myself a year ago, and I wonder sometimes about where my blog fits in. When I began, I needed somewhere to go, someone to talk about things to. I had things to say, stuff to get off my chest. People who knew me would sometimes read my blog and ask if I was alright, saying I sounded sad.

The birth of my blog of course coincided with the beginning of a new year, and it could be that winter is just a time for reflection, that Slummy single mummy just needs to step back, drink mulled wine, eat too many Roses,  and take stock, ready to start 2011 with a suitably slummy flourish.

If it isn’t completely arrogant and attention seeking, I’d really love to know what you like and dislike about my blog, which have been your favourite posts, and what makes you keep coming back. Do I make you laugh? Do I make you think? Or do you mutter under your breath as you read… ‘I wish she’d stop harping on about hating housework and write something interesting?’



  1. 12 December, 2010 / 2:34 pm

    Happy birthday to your blog. I stumbled across it whilst doing a bit of research. I read a lot of them, to help break up all the days I spend working at the coalface of human misery (i.e. Family Law). The two biggest mistakes people make are (a) writing too much – when they haven’t really got anything to say, or (b) like so many writers in general, allowing their writing to become merely self indulgent, egotistical, and ultimately little more than a form of self medication. You get the all clear on those counts. Writing about life should always be less important than actually living it though, so give the new fella priority – but keep the blog going, after all the success you’ve had with it. All the best. Al Cider

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:39 am

      “writing about life should always be less important than actually living it”. Kelvin sums up good blogging perfectly. But i’m afraid i think most of us are prey to blogging taking over just sometimes.

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:25 pm

      Ooh, what were you researching? I’m always intrigued at the search engine terms people put it which lead them to my blog. Yesterday is a good example – some are flattering, like ‘successful mummy blog’ – others less so, like ‘fat women having sex’…

      Glad you’re enjoying it though, hopefully it provides a good antitode to family law!

      • 14 December, 2010 / 9:48 am

        I wrote a piece for The Guardian ages ago about the ‘frozen embryo’ case, and they emailed me to ask if my contact details were still the same. Made me wonder what else I might write for women, from a legal perspective – so trawled through some female bloggers. Also, recently set up (non legal) Al Cider blog, and was interested in people who have successfully built up a following (should really be concentrating on day job!). Actually found you via Twitter, I think. Anyway keep up the good work, and if you ever need to check the legal background to a piece then just shout.

  2. 12 December, 2010 / 3:33 pm

    Congrats on the blogabirthday! Many more of them to come xx

  3. Paula
    12 December, 2010 / 7:06 pm

    Happy Blog Birthday! Having found your blog relatively late in the day I must say I am hooked. I look forward to reading your blog in the New Year. Best wishes for a great Christmas and a very Happy (not sad) New Year.X

  4. Lisbeth
    12 December, 2010 / 7:21 pm

    Aw! I just read to catch up on your life and to save time actually talking to you. I think you write just the right amount which is what makes it a good blog. I don’t tend to read blogs to be honest, except those of my chums! xxx

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:23 pm

      I see. Basically you read it to avoid an actual conversation then? Makes good sense. xx

  5. 12 December, 2010 / 7:30 pm

    Happy birthday, mine is next week! I love reading your blog as it feels like a chat with you, makes me laugh, smile and think. I can remember a ‘conversation’ with you way back when we both talked about envy. I said that I didn’t normally feel that emotion but I now admit to just a tad when it comes to your writing style, I genuinely love it, you are very talented. Hope we get to meet at cybermummy if I manage to blag a sponsor, it’d be good to have a drink and see if you actually look like your avatar ALL the time… X Please keep blogging X

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:22 pm

      Haha! I’m afraid I look like my avatar exactly NONE of the time. At Cybermummy last year I had to carry a picture of my avatar so that people would believe it was me! If I’d known when I started that I was actually going to MEET people I might have gone for something more realistic. Fingers crossed for a sponsor – it would be great to meet you x

  6. 12 December, 2010 / 8:41 pm

    Happy blog birthday!

  7. Beth
    12 December, 2010 / 8:54 pm

    I love the fact that your blog is based on your life as it is – how it’s not all Sex and the City but it has cocktails and London random dating in Tesco! My favourite post by far was Prince Charming – It did change my life and the role a certain person was playing in it. I saw things as they actually were – The only thing making me feel confident or worthwhile was the occasional backhanded compliment. It took a month of seeing things through the truth of the Prince Charming blog before he got sent packing. I don’t know you but I can’t thank you enough.

    Please keep blogging – I don’t know how you think of topics to cover but I think you get it spot on.

    Happy First Birthday!


    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:20 pm

      It was your comment I was thinking of Beth when I was thinking about having possibly changed at least one person’s life, and I’m SOOO pleased to hear you have actually made the break from your Prince Charming – that’s brilliant :-) I hope you’re feeling happier and more confident now, and that you managed the climb out of the well without too much hurt. xxx

      • Beth
        14 December, 2010 / 7:20 pm

        Just like you, I have found out I have truly wonderful friends so picking myself up wasn’t so bad. I had a bit of a life changing situation anyway so I think I was more able to see what and who was important and what and who really wasn’t. This having been reinforced with a drunken text message from said Prince when I was still in hospital asking if I was around for a quickie! It’s made easier when you get things like that.

  8. Fiona Firth
    12 December, 2010 / 9:37 pm

    Happy Blog Birthday!!! I think I must have come to you on the back of a comp but after getting your mail about your 1st year I have spent the last 1 + hours reading your posts and I am addicted. I love your humour. My oh has been saying “it can’t be THAT funny”, but it really is.

    Congratulations :)

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:18 pm

      Thank you Fiona! That is really lovely to hear, I’m glad you’re enjoying them :-)

  9. 13 December, 2010 / 4:53 am

    Happy blogversary.

    Am so glad you met someone! :-)

  10. 13 December, 2010 / 9:38 am

    happy birthday!
    i relate to almost everything you write in these posts. I too started out when i needed an outlet. It was my therapy, and i had lots to say. Now my life has moved on, i’m calmer, happier, and i also find i have less angst and cheek that i think made my early posts enjoyable. A break is as good as a….oh i can’t remember the saying, but you get the gist.

    ooh – and new man – how exciting!


    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:17 pm

      I know what you mean – when you’re less angst ridden and more content, do you lack an edge? Is it boring to read about someone being basically pretty normal and happy? I don’t think so, or at least I hope not, I think it’s often about the way you say things, rather than what you say.

  11. 13 December, 2010 / 10:43 am

    You make me laugh! It’s your language, your phrasing, the way you put sentences together – you could basically write about anything and I’d still read. So there! :)

  12. Nel
    13 December, 2010 / 11:16 am

    You just hit the nail on the head every time, Jo! Your post on smear tests still makes me laugh just thinking about it …. but you can’t possibly stop blogging because of a man!

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:15 pm

      I won’t, don’t worry! I just need to make sure I think about other things too :-)

      Who WOULDN’T laugh a a smear test?

  13. 13 December, 2010 / 11:41 am

    Happy Blog Birthday! Here’s to more blogging and more fun things with bloggers!

  14. 13 December, 2010 / 1:39 pm

    hey there, u have come a long way and i really look forward to ur funky way of narrating things ! rock on !

  15. Rachel
    13 December, 2010 / 2:08 pm

    I love your blog because I am a single parent too and was looking for a single parent mummy blog that didn’t drone on about what benefits are available, and how grim it all is : a little homourous distraction! Oh yes, and I am a self employed, working from home landscape architect, so any amount of ‘I look like I’m working because I am at the computer’ displacement activity is always welcome!
    I have still not found as many funny mummy blogs as i would like, though : surely there must be more???

    • 13 December, 2010 / 9:14 pm

      Haha! Anything that LOOKS like work has to be good right? Humour is hard to find in a blog I think. Mr Shev isn’t a mum exactly, but he always makes me laugh – worth looking up.

  16. 16 December, 2010 / 12:30 am

    I love that you have a boy who makes you feel like that, he sounds dreamy!
    But don’t stop writing on your blog! I love your writing!!! Happy blog birthday!!!

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