The Year that Was – 17 from ’17

This is probably one of favourite posts of the year to write and it is always a pleasure to link up with the very lovely, author and blogger, Sadhbh over at Where Wishes Come From.

1. Most Popular Blog Post

The most popular post on Simply Homemade for 2017 was ‘My Cloud’, one of the most personal posts I have ever shared on this blog. The feedback and private messages from people was in all honesty, extremely overwhelming and I did wonder briefly if it had been a mistake to share something so personal but with hindsight I could see that it paved the way for others to open up, for others to see that they are not alone in their thoughts and that can only be a good thing. Despite what we may think, there is still a massive stigma attached to mental health. I don’t have the answer on how we can banish that stigma other than to say we do need to keep talking, but that too is much easier said than done.

2.My Favourite Posts

I don’t have one favourite post of the year, I like them all, they’d never be published if I didn’t! However, one series I thoroughly enjoyed and look forward to continuing in 2018 are my Book Reviews. I adore reading, getting lost in another world, getting to know characters, thinking of them as friends and acquaintances. Is there any greater joy than that which can be found between the pages of a book?

3.Most Popular Instagram Photo

My small girl started school. She is adorable, she was my most popular photo on Instagram, she makes my heart explode.

4.Favourite Craft

I did so many crafts that never made it to the blog this year at all. I rediscovered my love for all things craft in a very big way and was driven by my quest for imperfection. If we strive for perfection will we ever enjoy anything? Of the crafts I did publish, my favourite was without doubt candle making. I love it and have continued to make my own candles. It is such a pleasurable activity.

5.Favourite Comments

I include this, not because I have a favourite comment, I favour them all, but rather as an opportunity to express my gratitude to everyone who takes the time to comment here, on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. It is very much appreciated and I am very fortunate to rarely attract anything negative.

6.Favourite Blog Series

Neither of these were a blog series as such but both were my absolute favourite things to be a part of in 2017. The first was Karen’s (Yankee Doodle Paddy) Gratitude Challenge in November. It is so rewarding to take part in this.

The second was Fionnuala’s (Three Sons Later) Advent Craft Swap. This is a real joy to be a part of; fun and exciting in equal measure and I am very grateful to Fionnuala for hosting it. I was also the very lucky recipient of her craft gift this year and it makes my heart smile to see these in my kitchen every day.

7.Kitchen Creations from 2017

Baked Oats
Egg & Avocado Toast
Chocolate Tart
Festive Bakewell
Pizza Puffs

8.Stepping Out From My Comfort Zone

On November 5th I hid under my dressing gown whilst my family listened to me on the radio! Yes, me on the radio, my nerves. I joined Louise Heraghty on the Sunday Grill on Beat Fm. Completely out of my comfort zone and I am very pleased I did that.

9.Favourite Social Media Platform of 2017

I love Instagram, I always have done. Now, Instagram changed this year and that is frustrating to say the least. I liked seeing all the lovely photos in chronological order. It’s not unusual now to open it up and see five-day old pictures. Still, though, it remains my favourite.

10/11 The Post I’m Most Proud Of & Most emotional Posts

I’ve rolled 10 & 11 together as both headings apply to the same three posts.

I’m proud of all my posts, however, there are three that spring to mind, that stand out from the others, from 2017. My Cloud, as I mentioned above, I almost didn’t publish that one.

Back in March, I paid tribute to my own Mother on here and wrote about that harrowing time in my life when we lost her, Anne is never far from my mind, but 2017 was especially difficult without her.

On August 17th we said goodbye to my Grandad, I had the privilege of reciting his eulogy which my Uncle & I wrote together, I wrote my own little tribute to him here too. We miss him.

12.Favourite Celebration

Without a doubt, my sister saying ‘I do’ back in July was my favourite celebration.


13.Most Common Theme

I don’t think I had a common theme in 2017. I hope I had a nice balance of everything.

14.Milestones in 2017

Going on the radio, contributing to newspaper articles, guest blogging; all mini milestones but for me, the biggest milestone was going my own way. It’s very easy to get caught up in what’s going on within the blogging community, following trends, accepting every review that comes your way because you’re afraid to say no. 2017 saw me say no to most things, it saw me go back to my voice, to gain confidence in my writing again because I had lost my way a little. I published my own recipes, recipes I believe in, recipes I cook in my kitchen every week. Yes, the biggest milestone was simply being me.

Just Me!

15.Simply Homemade in 2017

Simply Homemade become much more rounded in 2017. It doesn’t fit one particular category, it is very much reflective of my life. It isn’t for everyone but it is for me and I am actually quite happy with my little space at the moment.

16.What Simply Homemade Did for Me in 2017

On a personal level, 2017 was quite a difficult year, Simply Homemade gave me somewhere to escape to, somewhere to air my thoughts, pay tribute to those I have loved and lost, somewhere to celebrate my loves and it has been somewhere for me to be me.

17.Looking Ahead

I’ve never made plans for Simply Homemade, however, the appearance of the blog needs a little attention, so as soon as the children go back to school I’ll be getting stuck into that. My book reviews will continue, What Caught My Eye will be revived and after that, who knows? It will find it’s own way.


There you have it, 17 moments from 2017. Thank you for being here, for your continued support, your friendship and for reading. I look forward to sharing my 2018 with you x

Head over to Where Wishes Come From to read about Sadhbh’s very successful year and from there you can celebrate others’ 17 from ’17 too.


Simply Homemade is on FacebookTwitter &  Instagram


2 thoughts on “The Year that Was – 17 from ’17

  1. Thanks so much for joining in, Nicola! I love your blog. Even though you’ve had a tough year you’ve still managed to consistently inspire and make this place a gorgeous place to visit. I can totally identify with you wanting you to be yourself on your blog. I’ve found myself being a bit lost in it all this past year and the reason I haven’t quite given up the ghost just yet is because I think I need to just return to being ‘ME’ over in my little corner! Hopefully I can emulate you in 2018!

    Happy New Year xxx

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.