I feel ashamed. I really do. I usually do our annual Top 10 of the previous year on New Year's Eve (once I think I did it on New Year's Day, but dated it so that it at least looked like New Year's Eve*...). This year we are almost 2 weeks into the new year and no Top 10 post. I almost decided not to do it at all. I just couldn't find the time to go through every post, and write down my favorites, and cut out all but 10, and then rate them in the order of my favorite. But I found myself with some "free" time tonight (read: I was tired and I didn't want to clean or exercise), so I decided to do the Top 10 post, but do it differently. This year it isn't MY personal Top 10, it is the Top 10 posts based on how many times they were viewed.
That's right. Blogger tells me how often you** click on and read each post.
So here are the Top 10 most viewed posts of 2013 (click on the underlined, highlighted portion to go to each post):
10. The Greatest Show on Earth - Our trip to the Big Top with Poppy, Nana, & the Beauties.
9. Another Week of Thankfulness - The most recent of the bunch and part of our 30 Days of Thankfulness. Some of my favorite memories of the year!
8. April Snapshot - I love the snapshots too! And you've gotta love a post that ends with both of them crying...
7. April Showers - A kind of random assortment of activities and interesting things that kept us busy during a very rainy April.
6. Cousin Sleepover - Truly one of my favorite weekends of the year. I had so much fun with these 4 kiddos!
5. Bits of Tid: Preschool Edition - I love this one too. Especially the videos of them reading. They've been making even more books lately, and it is so much fun. Is anyone else obsessed with how amazing it is to watch a child learn to read?!
4. Where Have We Been? - This should probably be the title of all my recent posts *hangs head in shame* Now that Lucas doesn't have his class, we haven't been staying in-town each week. I sort of miss our afternoon adventures!
3. The Mama & The Slipper: A Story of Love & Temporary Insanity - Ah, the lengths a mother will go to (and the temporary insanity that it my cause) to make their children's dreams a reality! Funny story, I was in the preschool to take pictures and discovered that Allie wasn't wearing her slippers anymore! Apparently, they are allowed to just wear their socks, and she liked skipping the step of putting the slippers on, so she just went without. After all that work...
2. Camping - This was definitely at the top of our list too. Allie and Ryan started reminiscing in the van just a few days ago about our camping trip. Allie told me all of the details of the "Bear Hunt," and Ryan talked about going fishing (and not catching any fish...wah, wah). And I love, love, love the video of Allie singing her "Bike Ride" song. True story - we went a lot more bike rides, and she sang the song at some point on almost every single one!
1. The Lake House - Truthfully, I'm not sure what happened here. a normal post gets between 13-20 views. The high posts were in the 50-60 range. A few posts got near the 100 view range because I posted the link on facebook. But this post got 453 views. Over 300 more than the #2 post. I can't help but wonder if something went wrong here (or if we somehow ended up in the top of the google search results for bee allergies...or something worse...). Honestly, we look back on this week as one of the most traumatic of the year. But there were so many blessings. Finding out that Allie was allergic to bees when we were there to take action and had lots of Benadryl on hand. Having friends in the medical profession who answer their texts right away - and amazing technology that lets the confidently diagnose from miles, and hours, away. A fun night together at a hotel (not something we do often). School shopping with the kiddos to kill time (they got to pick out the clothes - and those pieces are still their favorites!) A wonderful time at the end of the week with Uncle Duck & Aunt Debbie. A wonderful reminder for the year to come that in the midst of life's most stressful moments, there are still some amazing silver linings!
Finally, to keep up with the (newer) tradition of including some photos (and to try to atone for taking SO long to get up the Top 10 post), here are some photos of the twins on New Year's Eve.
Lucas bought a New Year's Eve party kit at a garage sale this past summer for $0.50. I thought it was a silly purchase at the time, but when he pulled it out and I saw the hats, cups, plates, napkins, beaded necklaces, and party blowers all still in plastic wrapping I agreed it was a great idea!
The kids loved the party blowers, but they had to stop with them once the cousins arrived because the youngest Beauty was already sleeping.
The "older" cousins got a special movie night in the twins' room - complete with a special cozy spot to snuggle in and special snacks! The hope was that they would fall asleep watching the movie. They didn't. While they did not get to stay up to ring in the new year, they did get to stay up much closer than I would have normally allowed. The perks of a cousin sleepover!
My favorite thing about this post is that I look back and really see how amazing the past year has been. It makes me excited for a new year full of new experiences, adventures, and memories. Here's to an amazing 2014!
* I'm totally going to date this post so that it looks like it was posted on December 31st too! My OCD just can't allow me to have this post in a NEW YEAR when it has been the closing post of every other year...
**It doesn't tell me how often you personally click on each post...just how many times someone somewhere has clicked on each post. No worries. I'm not spying and/or keeping track!