First Anniversary

Today completes one full year of this blog. I had been wondering how to mark this first anniversary until I heard Karen Cushman at LA SCBWI. I am borrowing her sentence since it expresses my feelings exactly, “Every time I write a word, I offer my heart to my reader.”
When I started, the advice said to be consistent in posting and to be committed to the writing so your readers knew they could count on you. I began posting twice a week with a bit of experimenting initially with which days were best for me to become consistent. Within a month, I had figured it out and set my schedule for Mondays and Fridays – usually before 6 AM Central Standard or Daylight Time. I wondered how well I would stay with it since I have never been a consistent journal writer. I think the obligation calling to me from those to whom I offered my heart - my readers – has helped me stay on track.
I’ve thought this so seriously that at times I’ve wanted to insert “Reader” like Charlotte Bronte in Jane Eyre or “Dear Reader” like Kate De Camillo in The Tale of Despereaux.
It’s been an interesting journey with readers who are regulars, readers who are now-and-then, and readers who stumble upon the blog once in a while. Family members, local friends, friends from other places and long ago, former students whom I now count among my adult friends, and new acquaintances mingle with people who found my blog because they googled a word. Surprising to me have been the number of international hits. I can only assume they have found the blog by word searches.
Other curiosities have come from which blogs have received the most hits – not necessarily the ones I spent the most time on.  I’ve wondered why “Yes, Virginia, There Is” that I considered a light-hearted Christmas piece continues to get hits every week and why others have popped back up after a long silence – “Wet Cement Childhood” and “The Forest Lover.” I can figure that “A Teacher Who Made a Difference to Me” got extra hits because school started.
As I promised in “About This Blog,” I've offered:
•    readin” – [more that 130 book mentions and a number of poems],
•    writin’ – it’s all been writin’,
•    and not that much ‘rithmetic – just the Baylor numbers in “A Bit of Baylor ‘Rithmetic” and the bees in “Bees 8, Virginia 0” with the addition of one more as I note that twice a week for one year makes for 104 blogs.

Monday I will start the second year with a similar promise. ‘Rithmetic won’t come that often unless Baylor has another good year or – miracle of miracles – Ole Miss has one. And Dear Reader, I’m offering them from my heart to you.