A year of blogging

This week is BIG for us here at the Sisterhood. Big because it’s a birthday week (Toni’s on the 12th!). Big because it’s Valentine’s Day week (Hello, LOVERS!). And BIG because we have our first anniversary of blogging.

Last year, on February 10, 2014, we published our very first post and introduced our blog to the world (mostly our family and friends).

We wanted to dedicate our posts this week as odes to the blog, reflections on a year of blogging and then, of course, giving you, our readers (family and friends and THE WORLD), gifts for hanging out with us, reading us, supporting us, commenting on us, and letting us share our Sisterhood with you. To celebrate our very first anniversary we’re going to hold our very first GIVEAWAY.

#WVSisterhood #Giveaway !!

#WVSisterhood #Giveaway !!

OH YES.

We are OPRAH. And EVERYONE GETS CARS*. (*The word cars in this case represents small tokens of our affection and not actual cars or automobiles or vehicles of any kind. And the word everyone means select winners chosen at random, not every single person in the world. Please don’t sue us. We’re not actually Oprah.)

To enter our giveaway, all you have to do is leave a comment. Every comment gets you one entry into that day’s giveaway. That’s right. I said THAT DAY’S GIVEAWAY! We’re doing FOUR giveaways and a GRAND PRIZE GIVEAWAY. Because we’re CRAZY in LOVE with you! Each regular blogging day this week, a sister will select and introduce a prize. Leave a comment on the blog post, answering the question the sister poses to you! Each comment you leave gives you one entry into the draw for that prize. You can leave one comment or you can leave 100 comments, just make sure you’re answering the question. All the comments from all the blog posts this week will be put into the draw for the grand prize giveaway. Only comments posted before 12:00 a.m. EST Saturday February 14, 2015 will be considered.

We’ll make the draws and announce the winners on Valentine’s Day because we’re CRAZY in LOVE, remember!? We love you. You love us (we hope). And because it’s our BLOG-BIRTHDAY!!!

Questions? Worries? Concerns? Let us know. Love notes? Wishes for our 2nd year of blogging? Hopes and dreams for our future together? Let us know.

And sincerely – THANK YOU – for reading with us, hanging out with us, and cheering for us. Thank you. ❤

Okay. Enough Oprah. It’s time for me to reveal what I am giving away!!

For me, this year of blogging has been a test of sorts. A test to see if I had it in me to stick with a writing project longer than five minutes here, four seconds there, an hour there…and then nothing for MONTHS. I’ve been fairly busy getting knocked up and having babies…which isn’t full of bon-bon eating and story-watching like it’s hyped up to be. It’s actually hard, mean, rewarding, tricky, exhausting, energy-sucking work. It takes a lot out of me every day…and that’s just getting out of bed. 😉 So to commit to a blog, even one with my sisters who are my most favourite people on earth (besides all of my other favourite people on earth…really gotta work on this list, otherwise my Oscar speech for Best Adapted Screenplay is going to SUCK), was a huge deal for me.

Will I get overwhelmed?

Will I suck at writing because my brain is mush and my babies are sucking me dry in all the ways?

Will I have interesting things to say besides I have babies, babies poop, babies, poop, babies, poop?

Will I hate it?

Will I resent it?

Will I be able to form coherent sentences every single week?

Apparently, no, not so much, not so much, no, no, and sort of! 😉

This blog has let me write about my life in ways I haven’t been able to commit to before. It’s helped me reawaken the part of my brain that is writerly, the part that speaks in narrative and sees everything as it would be described on a page. It has given me the chance to look through my crazy, zany, nutty, chaotic day and find the threads to write about.

It’s made me sit down and write for at least an hour every week. It doesn’t seem like a lot, but when your whole day is usually spent counting down the hours until you get to go back to bed every day, spending solid time, regularly, on writing is a giant gift.

So for me, this blogging year has been about writing again, putting words out there again, and reminding myself that this is the reason I went to the fancy school and got the fancy writing degree and want to be a writer when I grow up (Ha!).

When thinking about what I’d like to give to you, readers of all the words, I immediately thought about giving you MORE words (because I’m classy that way).

I’m giving away a short story collection from my author-hero, Alice Munro. She is so many things to me. She represents a strong, Canadian female author, something I’d like to be considered as. She is a mother of three children and yet still writes. She had her first story published in university and her first short story collection published when she was in her mid-30s. As someone in her mid-30s, this is very encouraging. And she won the freaking Nobel Prize in Literature. She’s incredible. And awesome. And I want to be her. And I love her stories.

The collection I’ve chosen is called Too Much Happiness, a beautiful book full of well-spun stories, and quotes, like, “Always remember that when a man goes out of the room, he leaves everything in it behind… When a woman goes out she carries everything that happened in the room along with her.”

Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro

Too Much Happiness by Alice Munro

I really love this collection. And I love what it represents for me as a writer, a mother, and a Canadian woman. I love all of the things. And I’d like to share it with you! All you have to do is answer this question: What is your favourite book? Or who is your favourite author? 

And thank you, again, for this year. It’s been awesome. ❤

~ Julia

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11 thoughts on “A year of blogging

  1. My favorite author, in case you didn’t know, is Stephen King. Having said that, because of your beautiful “writerly”mind, you have introduced me to so many other authors. I always look forward to the next recommended reading from you. Thank you so much for marrying Ben, and having the highest concentration of grandbabies, and, especially for loving me.

  2. Gosh what a hard question. Unlike you, I don’t actually know any writers of books. And my taste is always changing. Right now I am loving the Outlander series byDiana Gabaldon. But I also love Preteen stuff like Harry Potter. But I think my forever favourite is the Narina series by C.S. Lewis.

  3. My favourite author is Jodi Picoult, and I don’t know if I could pick a favourite book! I have so many it would be impossible to choose. Great job with the blog ladies, I am a faithful reader and LOVE what you’re doing. 🙂

    • I have so many favourite books and authors that it’s impossible to name just one of either. At any given moment I’ll supply a different answer to this question. At *this* moment, because the words “strong female” are echoing in my mind, I would urge everyone to go and read THE LIONS OF AL-RASSAN, by Guy Gavriel Kay. It’s full of strong men and even stronger women, and it will make you cry at the end. Congratulations on your first year of blogging. It’s been a ride, and somehow I think it’s just getting started. *smile*

  4. I LOVE BOOKS! Although I hated it so much during high school because it was mandated and it was not part of my home life, I found the love during college.

    My favorite author is Lawrence Sanders. I started reading his books when I was 18, was given the First Deadly Sin in college by a life long friend Susan B. At that time I developed a love for spin tingling fictional murder mystery. This started a long history of reading everything he wrote. I got to follow his intense type writing, lots of details that brought you to the room or place where everything was happening… over time his style changed and kept me reading. I look now at the list of books that he wrote before his death in 1998 and I have only missed reading 3 of his 18 books. Need to get those three into my library of books.

    I also enjoy Historical romance, the one author that sticks out is Teresa Medeiros and there is one book I have read 6 times, Whisper of Roses… and each time I read it, it is like I never read it before. I see that she has 20 plus books, I own 4 but have never been able to find the others.

    You loaned me Emily Giffin’s borrowed books, so enjoyed and loved them as well.

    I like to read, other than the necessary text books right now as I find I can leave my issues behind, read and dream.

    I currently own at least 32 books that I have never read… one day.

    I am so amazed that all you girls love to read, not matter what the content. It was part of your childhood to be read to, (your Dad and I could read together the Cat in the Hat in 2 minutes flat) as well as read and collect books you like, a passion I see is being passed on to the grand kids.

    Mom L

  5. Congrats on a year of blogging. For me my favorite author’s are Haruki Murakami (Norwiegen Wood, Wild Sheep Chase, and 1Q84) and William Gibbson (Neromancer, Count Zero, and Idoru). Favorite Book is Flower’s for Algernon by Daniel Keyes.

  6. Julia when I first met you and Toni you two were toddlers. I have followed this blog daily and while I rarely comment on any blog I have loved getting to know you and sisters as the amazing young women you have become. Congratulations on one year of blogging, I too have struggled with keeping such a task alive for more than a few months so I think this anniversary and real accomplishment!

  7. I WISH I had a favourite author or even a favourite book. I’ve never viewed an author as having a specific genre…. except the obvious John Grishams and Danielle Steeles of the world, but I don’t tend to read them anyways.
    I look for stories that grab my attention, fill my head with beautiful images, interesting knowledge, scandalous events and magical lands.

    My highlight reel includes:
    The Shack – William P. Young
    Let’s Pretend This Never Happened: A Mostly True Memoir – Jenny Lawson
    Carry On Warrior – Glennon Doyle Melton
    The Red Tent – Anita Diamant
    Mr. Popper’s Penguins – Richard & Florence Atwater

  8. Also, I can’t wait to read Ghost Boy by Martin Pistorius. It’s his true story about how he became sick with an unknown illness and eventually fell into a coma. Over the course of 14 years he “reawakens”, but is unable to communicate this until one of his care workers notices a slight change. With the help of computer technology he is now able to communicate with a computer and was able to co-write this book. Sounds interesting!!!!

  9. I don’t have a favourite book, though I would say that fantasy is my favourite genre. Lately the realm of what I read has expanded quite a bit, including such diverse titles as: “Come, Thou Tortoise”, “The Pillars of the Earth” and currently “The Night Circus.”

    My favourite author? That’s easy: you. You protest that you are not a published author, but I have read many examples of your work. Others may say of course I pick my wife. I say that is the who, but not the why. I have seen your passion for writing in time spent researching, creating details for your work, and deliberating on word choices. I have seen it as you work on this blog. I look forward to reading more.

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