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Thoughts on A Decade of Blogging

Today my blog turns 10 years old.

(It’s also my wedding anniversary, so, you know, happy anniversay, Terry! I’m celebrating by writing a post about my blog, a.k.a. “my OTHER boyfriend”…)

(I’m joking: we’re going out to dinner. Me and Terry, I mean, not me and the blog. I mean, the blog’s 10: it would probably prefer McDonalds, or Pizza Hut, or… I’m just going to stop pretending I have a clue what 10-year-olds are into these days, OK?)

So, ten years, huh? It’s kind of crazy, and it’s also kind of… not. I feel like I should be doing one of those photo shoots, where I’m carrying a bunch of balloons while walking along a deserted beach, in a ballgown or something. You know, the ones people do now, to celebrate their “first blog birthday” or whatever? (I should probably be worried that people celebrating their first blogging anniversary are already way more professional than I am after ten of them, but, as Scarlett O’Hara once said, I’ll think about that tomorrow…)

Tell a Beautiful Story

As I was saying, in some ways it’s a little bit weird to think I’ve been doing this for an entire decade now, but in other ways it just isn’t, because I honestly can’t imagine what else I’d have ended up doing- I really can’t. I remember when I was a little girl, I used to try to imagine what my life would be like as an adult, and I just couldn’t do it – which was strange, because I wasn’t exactly lacking in imagination, let’s put it that way. Back then, though, I could imagine everything BUT my own future. I couldn’t imagine myself working in an office; being a teacher, or a nurse, of any of the other things people my age said they wanted to be when they grew up. I couldn’t imagine getting married, or having a house, or a job – it just didn’t seem possible, so I didn’t bother to even think of those things (when my friends started talking about their dream weddings, I’d just tune out: I wasn’t jealous, or upset, I just didn’t think stuff like that would ever happen to me, so what was the point of even thinking about it?), but every night I’d get out my diary, and I’d write about all of the things that had already happened, and that was my world. I had this obsessive need to EXPLAIN myself: to record all the little details of my life, for some unknown (and totally non-existent) audience, who got to hear aaaaalll about how I spent my days, and how closely I resembled Neneh Cherry. That kind of thing.

It didn’t ever occur to me that I was already doing the thing that would end up being my career: telling my story, obsessively writing everything down, as if my life depended on it. If someone had told me, back then, that one day I’d make a living from telling those stories, I’d probably just have laughed: but I think I’d have been excited, too, because what could possibly be better than getting to write for a living – and to write anything I wanted, too? It was all I’d ever really wanted to do, and it still is. From the moment I first stumbled upon the world of “online journalling”, as we called it back then, I knew I wanted to be a part of it, and I’m not really surprised to still be doing it, ten years later. If there’s a way to tell my story – and to actually have people read it – then you better believe I want to be in on that, because I’m not sure I know how to do anything else, really.

tell a beautiful story

Blogging has changed massively in the ten years since I started: I mean, that pretty much goes without saying (er, even although, I’ve said it many, many times now), but for me it’s ultimately still about telling stories: MY stories – the ones I want to tell, rather than the ones I’m told to tell by an editor, or a client, or a boss. I’m doing a job that my younger self would be excited about, and I don’t really think it gets better than that, all things considered. I feel incredibly lucky to be doing this for a living, and, of course, that’s all down to you. Uh-huh, YOU. Don’t forget that I can see you through my computer screen. (Have you done something to your hair, by the way? Because you look AWESOME…)

I started blogging, not just because I wanted to be able to tell my stories, but because I wanted to be able to tell them to people who would understand and relate to them: because those paper journals were all well and good, but they couldn’t talk back, could they? You can, though… and even when you don’t, the fact that you’re still out there, reading along, means the world to me, so thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for helping this site keep going for the last ten years.

Now here’s to the next ten…

 

 

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35 Comments
  • Lily
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations on both your ten year anniversary and ten years of your blog! I had depression last year, and even on my very worst days Forever Amber would at least make me crack a smile. That may not sound like a lot, but it meant something to me. 🙂

    • Amber
      March 31, 2016

      Oh, it’s not our ten year wedding anniversary – I should probably have made that clearer! It’s the 10th anniversary of my blog, which also happens to be the same day as my wedding anniversary: I started the blog before I got married!

      • Lily
        March 31, 2016

        That’ll teach me to comment before my first coffee of the day. Well congrats anyway! 🙂

  • Myra
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations on both of your anniversaries. You were a beautiful bride, and the speeches can still bring a tear when I think of them, and John the Hero.

    Your blogs brighten up my day too, especially important for me in difficult times.

    Long may you keep on living, loving and writing.

    Lang may yet lum reek.

    • Amber
      March 31, 2016

      Thanks, Myra, that’s lovely of you to say! I still have your wedding gift to us in pride of place in our room, too 🙂

      • Judi
        March 31, 2016

        I know I am relatively new to your blogs but… did I hear “wedding photos” dare I ask, are you willing to share a little peek?
        And congratulations on both anniversaries, please keep doing what you are doing 🙂

        • Judi
          March 31, 2016

          Ha! Who knew I could drive the search engine bus (and without searching for “type anything and press enter”!) – I see you shared already – lots – marvellous – I do love a good wedding! 🙂

  • Alice Bayfield
    March 31, 2016

    Wow congratulations, I’ve only just reached my first blog birthday, I can’t imagine how it must feel getting to ten years! What an amazing achievement! Alice xx

    http://www.woodenwindowsills.co.uk

  • Hana
    March 31, 2016

    Congrats! I have been your reader for the better part of these 10 years, so I’m definitely staying for the next ten 🙂

  • Sandra
    March 31, 2016

    Happy blog anniversery and happy wedding anniversery!!
    You should know that I’m a big fan of you and your blog.
    Your blog posts are so great and refreshing.
    I wish you only the best.

    xx
    Sandra

  • Fi
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations! My blog turns 10 in July this year, it doesn’t seem like I’ve been doing it that long. X

  • Mel
    March 31, 2016

    Hippo birdie and congratulations! Love reading your blog! Keep it up!

  • Jennifer
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations on your blog anniversary and your wedding anniversary.

    I have been reading your blog for a long time. Not for the whole ten years, but I did go back and read through the archives when I found it. Your voice is so engaging and real. I always look forward to your posts. I hope you will be blogging for many years to come.

  • Charlotte Lane
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations for both! Your blog is amazing and I’m only annoyed that I didn’t stumble across it earlier – I always look out for your posts everyday and I love reading them all 🙂 Keep up the great work!!xo

    Char | http://www.charslittleblog.blogspot.co.uk

  • Ophelia
    March 31, 2016

    I have been reading your blog since 2008. When I found it through the fashion police I took two days to work my way through the archives. I read literally every entry you posted (okay, now I start to sound like a stalker…). I love how your writing evolved. Although I am missing some of the early unfiltered ramblings I love how you managed to get more “professional” and keep your voice at the same time. Your writing is amazing and you can turn every and any topic in a great read. I hope I get to follow your development and your acts of stupidity for ten more years. Thank you!

  • Andrea@WellnessNotes
    March 31, 2016

    Happy Anniversary! And happy 10 years of blogging! How great that you ended up getting a job you were always meant to do!

  • CiCi Marie
    March 31, 2016

    10 years, wow, congratulations! Oh and on your other anniversary too 😉 I’m glad you found your calling because the internet is a better place for having your blogs in it (and I’ve read enough bad ones to know)! My blog hit 4 years this week, and I too felt bad I yet again hadn’t done a balloon shoot. Maybe for my 30th… although that’s in a month’s time so yeah, that’s probably not going to happen… Who are these people who have enough foresight to buy professionally-inflated balloons?!

  • Maija
    March 31, 2016

    Congrats! Ten years makes me feel old. Your blog was one of the first ones I started reading and I think that was probably eight years ago already. I first found it just after you wedding and I’ve been interested in reading about your life ever since. I think you blog just keeps getting better!

  • Justina
    March 31, 2016

    This was so wonderful to read. I’m so glad that you get to tell stories for a living and that I get to read them!
    -Justina

  • Rachel
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations! I hope you realise that you are such an inspiration, and I hope that I’ll get to celebrate such a momentous blogaversary in the future. Ten years is such an amazing achievement – well done!!

  • Helen
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations on doing this wonderful job for 10 years!!! Unbelievable….. I really enjoy reading your blog, and especially when you go on your travels! Here’s to the next 10 and beyond! Love xxx

  • Helen
    March 31, 2016

    Oh… and sorry – I meant to also say Happy Wedding Anniversary to you and Terry too! Much love xxxx

  • Sagan
    March 31, 2016

    Happy birthday blog! 🙂

    Congratulations — that’s really exciting you’ve been blogging for so long! I love seeing how much the blogosphere has evolved over the 8 (!) years that I’ve been blogging, too. It’s incredible how much the technology has changed, and it’s so cool to be able to see our own style/voice/writing quality improve over time.

  • Elena
    March 31, 2016

    Happy Anniversary! I only found your blog a month ago and I especially like the parts about blogging and “a day” in your life. Some of your blogging tips were very helpful for me.

  • Fiona
    March 31, 2016

    A very happy anniversary on both years. Well done, truly living your dream. Aunt Fiona xxx.

  • Mana
    March 31, 2016

    Congrats on a decade of blogging!! And several years of Terry!

    Ya know I have no idea how old my blog is. I feel like that’s a thing I should know.

    Also yes my hair is different today, I’m tryin a new style called sopping wet in a towel because my blow dryer sucks. Thank you so much for noticing. 😉

    Mana
    Fashion And Happy Things

  • Anca
    March 31, 2016

    Congratulations! Happy anniversary. x

  • Sasha
    March 31, 2016

    Happy anniversary Amber! I can’t even remember how I came across your blog but I’ve been a faithful reader for a while now 🙂 Here’s to ten more!

  • Nicola
    April 1, 2016

    I’ve been reading your blog since soon after your wedding (I fell across your blog by following a photo of all those GLORIOUS buttons) and have been popping back ever since – but I’ve never felt the need to comment until now..

    Congratulations!

    I know it’s your job, but thank you – thank you for such an enjoyable read over so many years, thank you for sharing the little things that make us smile, thank you for all the little stories, the tales of Rubin, the beautiful photography, for ALL the polka dots, and for reminding us that it’s ok to overdress sometimes.

    Enjoy this day!

  • Kyah
    April 1, 2016

    Congratulations on 10 years for both your blog and marriage! It’s amazing to think what you would have seen all these years in the blogging world!

  • Sabina @OceanblueStyle at Manderley
    April 1, 2016

    Congratulations Amber. You must be so proud. I am a professional writer myself and love reading your posts because of your voice and unique perspective! To 10 more years. xoxo. Sabina

  • Moira
    April 1, 2016

    Congratulations! Your blog brings me so much enjoyment, thank you xx

  • Sarah Rooftops
    April 1, 2016

    I AM wearing my hair differently today, thanks for noticing.

    Happy ten year blogging anniversary (and whatever-the-count-is wedding anniversary, too). I could have written all of this. Except without the making a living from it part. But the obsessively chronicling my life and not really believing it’s a way to earn a living these days parts.

  • Becky
    April 6, 2016

    With regards to what a 10 year old would like to eat, I was reading my childhood diary the other day and was talking about my plans for my 11th birthday: “Mummy’s said me and Katie can go to a posh restaurant like Pizza Hut”. So there’s your answer. Mind you, this was 17 years ago so who really knows?

  • Bonita Vear
    April 15, 2016

    Congrats for both your anniversaries! That’s super exciting, and I think it’s so awesome that you get to do what you would have always wanted to do… I think the passion you have for telling stories really comes through and that’s what makes your blog so great!! 😀 ❤

    xox,
    bonita of Lavender & Twill

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