I think it's safe to say that I have had a pretty incredible two years of blogging, and I am so grateful to every person who has been a part of the journey. If someone would have told me on the 7th February 2014 when I finally publicised this blog that Amy Elizabeth would have grown to what it currently is I would have never believed it. Over 12,000 of you are now reading or following Amy Elizabeth in some way! My blog is my passion, I'd love nothing more than to spend hours every day writing, photographing and perfecting Amy Elizabeth, admittedly something that I used to do, until life got in the way as it so often does. Although my blog posts have grown less frequent as life as become more stressful, my blog is still such an integral part of my daily routine and I will continue to blog for as long as I can reach out and make a difference to even one single person.
Below, I have complied a short list of the biggest highlights and most important things I have learnt so far:
1. Award shortlists - This time last year I was in complete shock at having received two national award shortlists... little did I know that I'd be sat here a year later with FIVE national blog award shortlists to my name. Absolutely incomprehensible. The two award ceremonies that I have been able to attend so far were some of the proudest moments of my life, and believe me it is not often I will admit I am proud of myself. Only a few weeks ago it was revealed that I have been shortlisted to win 'Best Lifestyle Blog' in the 2016 UK Blog Awards, a blog title that would mean the absolute world to me, I cannot wait to head to the awards in April so keep your fingers crossed!
2. Confidence - It's a scary thing publishing yourself so openly and honestly on the internet. You are opening yourself up to attack from potentially millions of people who have the opportunity to voice their opinions from the safety of hiding behind their laptop. For a few months I told no one about my blog, terrified of the backlash that I could potentially receive. It only takes a minute of scrolling through twitter to learn that the internet is not always a friendly place. However, my inital reservations could not have been more wrong. The community of the blogging world is incredible and the support between bloggers is so genuine. Hand on heart, the bloggers I have had the absolute pleasure of meeting and attending events with are some of the kindest, most genuine people I have ever met and I am proud to say they are my friends. Feeling accepted by this community has worked wonders for my confidence, and seeing my stories being greeted with such a positive response is such an overwhelming feeling.
3. Blog like no one is reading - A point I wrote about in my 'Happy First Birthday' post, but one that couldn't be more true to this day: 'The turning point for Amy Elizabeth came when I stopped worrying about what every reader was thinking about my content. I stopped writing for the sake of publishing posts, and started writing for myself. The enjoyment I get now when I publish something personal, lifestyle or advice based and receive an overwhelming amount of positive responses is exponential. The idea that even one person is taking the time to not only read what I have to say, but comment on how it has helped or inspired them in some way is enough to make me want to continue blogging for as long as anyone is willing to read it.'
From the bottom of my heart, thank you so much once again. I promise that over the next 12 months my blog will become much more of a priority and I hope that you continue to want to read what I have to say!