So, 2014 is happening soon! I have to say that 2013 was pretty good to me. It was a year that brought me far from where I started. My year began with being notified that my full-time job was being reduced to freelance hours (nice way to start the year, huh?). Having a bit of free time on my hands, and not knowing what I wanted to do next, I started this blog on a whim. Home base is my dining room table.
I made some lemony chicken soup, posted it here, and entered it into a contest on new-to-me Food52. It unexpectedly went on to be named a Community Pick, which means that other Food52 users liked it and thought it deserved a shout-out. I was surprised, flattered and motivated to keep going. Even if it meant many, many trips to the grocery store. Sometimes for a single pineapple that rode shotgun on the way home.
I posted clean-out-the-cupboard recipes and photos of my dog posing with a blowtorch. I had about five readers, including my husband, and mom and dad. I had no idea how to use my camera, so I just turned it on Auto and hoped for the best. Almost a year later, I’ve developed, photographed and posted nearly 200 recipes. I’ve studied and researched and practiced to improve my food photography. I have over 1,200 people on Facebook and almost 3,700 people on Pinterest following along with my kitchen adventures. I’ve had the chance to work with companies I admire. I’ve received the nicest comments and e-mails from people around the world (even The Sandwich King himself!). I’ve virtually met dozens of new friends, and have even met a few of them in person, too!
All of this to say: thank you so much for supporting and encouraging me in 2013. None of this would be possible without you. I wish nothing but the best for you, your family, and your kitchen in 2014. I don’t know where the year will take us, but I look forward to standing up tall and finding out.
Whether you’re ringing in the New Year by hosting or attending a party, or just snuggling up on the couch with your family, party food is a non-negotiable, right? I’ve rounded up my favorite 10 easy and tasty party bites for New Year’s Eve, including award-winning meatballs, wonton cups (my unofficial Food Of The Year, thanks to Angela), healthy snacks for those already thinking about resolutions, and a few bites for your sweet tooth. All of these can be whipped up in less than a half hour (and many in much less than that!). So put on your party hat (and mustache glasses?) and have a great celebration!
Click the names of the dishes to go to the recipes. And if you get to the recipe, and the formatting is a bit funky, I apologize – I’m still getting things re-aligned after my Blogger-to-Wordpress transfer.