2011 RubySongbird year in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,700 times in 2011. If it were a cable car, it would take about 28 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

For obvious reasons, I’m super excited about my year in blogging, and I love the way WordPress puts together the stats with little fireworks. Adorable.

I was also amused to see that people found me by searching for:

“rubysongbird, weird spiky bugs on my tomato, coffee shop central park, and skip kichijoji shoes.”

Particularly since the shoes in Japan did not fit me, as I have big ol’ feet, and even at the onsen / hotel, I had to wear the men’s sandals to go outside. Someone also found me by searching Google for veiny feet.” That’s just gross, but I hope they found what they were looking for.

The fact that most people reading my blog were from the United States is not surprising, but I was pleasantly surprised to learn that I have readers in Japan AND Canada! Hello neighbors! And someone in Oceana, Australia! So cool. Seriously. Amazing.

October was my blog’s most popular month, centering around our too-short visit to Tokyo, Japan, and the subsequent blog posts. I know many of these clicks were due to family members checking up on us, since we weren’t calling home to check in.

BUT!

Only 3 of the 5 top-viewed posts in 2011 were about Japan. Which makes me feel like the Internet likes RubySongbird, and not just the Japan trip posts. Check it out, in order of popularity:

  1. Day 5: leaving onsen; Shimokitazawa shopping  October 2011
  2. Y’all, it’s officially Fall. Sweater time. November 2011
  3. Day 7: Temples! Buddha! Koi! Sushi! October 2011
  4. Day 4: my favorite place, onsen October 2011
  5. Fashionably late to this appetizer party December 2011

Obviously my own favorite posts this year were those I wrote in Japan, exhausted and curled up on the futon with the iPad, uploading just a few of the almost 900 photos that I took overseas. I almost feel bad for our family members because we inflicted the full slideshow on them, all in one sitting!

I’m so glad I started this blog. It’s opened up my little world to a much bigger one, with tons of blogs to follow (honestly, I’m on Google Reader and WordPress reader multiple times a day just to keep up!) and I LOVE learning about your lives, your stories and your style. I almost feel like I know many of you, even though we have never met or spoken.

Thank you, thank you, all of you, for reading my little blog!

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 1

As it’s the holidays, and actually going to be a whole new year in just a few days it seems like a good time to remind myself of all the things to be happy about.

100 is a pretty big number but I think I can make it!

Here we go:

1. My crazy family.

My crazy, crazy family.

2. My wonderful boyfriend.

Boyfriend and me, in Japan at Freshness Burger.

3. Traveling and taking vacations!! (being able to visit Sedona, AZ and Tokyo, Japan this year.)

I know one person in this photo - can you pick them out?

4. Starting this blog so I can share part of my life with all of you lovely random people!

(I don’t really have a picture of that.)

5. My health and the ability to use that precious gift to share with others.

Celebrating sister's birthday by giving life. Does my hand look really big to you? And am I the only one who wonders if people who think they are vampires sneak in and steal donations sometimes? Gross.

6.  The most adorable furbabies. And discovering a Reddit thread for guinea pigs!

7. Adventures, like going ziplining for the first time this year!

8. The fall. There’s almost nothing I don’t like about fall weather, clothes, pumpkins, etc…

9. Food! I’ve becoming something of a cook over the past couple years and it makes me so happy to share meals and treats with the people I love (or even like a tiny bit haha)

10. Learning to make collages with my pictures! You’ll see more of this on the blog in 2012! Thanks to Ellyn at Mandoo and Lumpia for telling me how to do the collage thing.

Happiness # 6-10

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 1

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 2

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 3

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 4

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 5

100 Things to be Happy About: Part 6

100 Things to be Happy About

Fall photo: Kamakura, Japan

We are on the verge of Christmas season, but I am not ready to jump on that bandwagon yet. In an effort to hold on to the crisp fall feeling, I’ve changed my desktop background to this lovely memory, a photo I took when we were in Kamkura, south of Tokyo, in  Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.

I thought I’d share it here with you in case you’re also not quite ready to loose the death grip on fall foliage.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving with lots of good food and good company!

Walking around while visiting temples in Kamkura, Kanagawa, Japan