My Top Five Blog Posts of 2015 (and a tribute to my mom)

A tribute to my mom

2015 was a year of highs and lows, the lowest of lows coming the day after Christmas when my mother passed away following a long battle with breast cancer. Mom was the woman who taught me my love of gardening, cooking, crafting, and birds (although not necessarily chickens, of which she had enough as a young girl helping to care for her own mother’s flock). Mom was into sustainable living before sustainable living was cool, and I don’t know if I would be raising and preserving my own food if it wasn’t for her influence and guidance.

It’s a little scary facing a new year without her, but life goes on. I will honor her legacy through this blog by sharing the things she taught me with all of you.

Rest in peace, Mom.

A tribute to my mom

My last selfie with my mom, taken the week before she died.

My top five bog posts of 2015

2015 was the first full year for Counting My Chickens, and one of the highlights of the year was watching the blog grow. I’ve learned a lot and gained many new readers, for whom I am grateful. I’m still not where I want to be with the blog, but I will continue to keep working to provide you valuable content. The whole reason why I started this blog in the first place was to inspire others the way my mom inspired me – to show you that anyone can raise their own food and live a more sustainable lifestyle. Have I inspired you to start a garden, try your hand at canning, or even get a few backyard chickens? If so, I would love to hear about it.

As I did last year, I am sharing a few tidbits from the Counting My Chickens annual report that I received from Jetpack (a WordPress plugin I use). The report provides all sorts of interesting statistics about my blog and readership. For example, in 2015, I had readers from 112 different countries. (Wow!) Not surprisingly, most of my readers come from the U.S., but you Aussies come in a strong second. (I know how you love your chooks Down Under.)

There was one statistic in particular that stood out for me. The busiest day of the year on the blog, the day it received more traffic than any other day, was May 20. That day just so happened to be my mom’s 71st – and last – birthday. How cool is that? I am going to take it as some sort of sign.

The final statistic I am going to share with you is the list of my top five blog posts for 2015 – those posts that had the most views among the 33 that I published.

Here’s the list, in case you missed any of them:

  1. Is it legal to raise chickens in my suburban backyard?
  2. Caring for your suburban chickens: How much time does it really take?
  3. 10 things that can be recycled for the garden
  4. How to make life more interesting for your suburban chickens
  5. Housing chickens in a suburban backyard

Wishing you and yours a happy and healthy 2016. If you are still fortunate to have your mom in your life, give her an extra hug the next time you see her.

Happy New Year.

  • Deb Hollowell

    You inspired me to try something I had never tried before–arugula! I learned that I loved it, & I decided to grow it myself this year. It did so good that I was able to harvest it until the middle of December–outdoors–in Wisconsin! It lived through a big snow in November & continued to thrive, amazingly. I harvested the seeds & will replant them in Spring.
    I love reading your blog; you are doing a great job with it! I know you made your Mom proud ♡♡♡

    • Deb, that makes me so happy to hear. My arugula was going strong through November, too, and then the deer broke into the garden and ate it down to nothing! Oh well, I suppose they needed it more than me at that point. Happy new year to you and Dan. I hope our paths cross in 2016.

  • Bill

    Happy New Year Deb and I’m so sorry to hear about your mother. My parents have been gone for years but not a day goes by I don’t think of them and wish they were here. Hugs to you!

  • Happy new year Deb. I am so sorry for your loss. I know your Mom was proud you are carrying on the homesteading, self-sufficient lifestyle and to do it in her memory is the best way to honor her. Take care and I wish you nothing but the best for 2016.

    • Thank you, Lisa. I know 2015 was quite a year for you, and I am betting there are a lot of great things coming your way this year, too. All the best.

  • Shauna

    Deb, I’m so sorry to hear about your mom. She’ll live on in your heart and through this blog.

    I’m happy to hear that this blog is doing so well. You provide valuable information, awesome photos, and make us laugh. No wonder your audience is growing!

    I wish you the best in the coming year and beyond.

  • Sheila Langeslay

    I am so so sorry to hear about your dear mother. Please take extra care of yourself while you are grieving. I believe the increase in traffic on her last birthday was not a coincidence and what a lovely tribute it would be to make her birthday a special blog day. Maybe by sharing something she taught you or a funny story. It will be 18 years ago in March since I lost my mom but I think of her every time I do the things she loved like riding my horse or spending time with our furry gang. I hope that your memories bring you comfort. I promise the pain will fade. Big hugs from Texas-

    • Sheila, I love that idea! Thank you for suggesting it. And thank you for your kind words. I’m doing okay.