One year ago today I began this blog called Open Window. The name was derived from something that Maria said in The Sound of Music. "When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window." Eighteen months ago, I was laid off from a job on Wall Street, and Peter and I vowed then that we would make this our "open window", thus the name for the blog.
When I look back to one year ago, I can't believe all I've learned and all we've done. A year ago I knew absolutely nothing about blogs. The internet to me was used primarily for plane reservations and a computer was used for word documents, excel spreadsheets, and tweaking jpeg photos. Well all of that has changed. Our blog is now firmly established and I've learned to post from anywhere, even from 35,000 feet over the rockies. I've learned that the internet is a phenomenal source of information on any and every topic you could ever want, and the land of blogs is the friendliest and most generous community I've ever known or been privileged enough to participate in. These days I follow ten blogs religiously on the topics of photography, food, art, and french words - no surprises there. I've learned a great deal from those who have gone on before, through their example, and sincerely hope that they agree with the adage that "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery". These days you will also rarely find me without my computer in hand. All of our photography work is done on a computer, our address books, calendars and my recipe box all reside on my MacBook, my homepage provides me with up-to-the-minute weather, stock prices and surf conditions, nearly all of my ongoing contact with friends occurs via email, messages or video chats, and whenever we have a question, we "ask our best friends", my computer or Peter's iPad. We have happily taken up full-fledged residence in the 21st century, something we never had time to do before.
First and foremost, one year ago, we set out to entertain on Open Window and we sincerely hope we've achieved that goal. We've made 231 posts to Open-Window over the last twelve months which is an average of 4 posts a week, mostly focused on food, photography, and travel. Want to know which posts were your favorites? The post with the most pageviews was Chipotle & Rosemary Roasted Nuts by Ina Garten, and the second was Cooking with Patricia Wells in Provence. Posts on my two favorite cookbook authors lead the way. The next two most viewed posts were Tomato Tarte Tatin and, believe it or not, Participles and Prepositions. But perusing all of the stats reveals to me an equal interest in travel, photography and food.
In 231 posts, which included 35 slide shows, we've shared a lot this year: Flying Tigers, Reflections in an Icicle, and a Narcissistic Swan; the big picture and the smallest details of trains, planes, boats and antique cars; snows of last winter, the flowers of spring, summer surf, and the brilliance of fall; pictures of the shorelines and skylines of Hawaii, Puerto Rico, and the Bahamas, in addition to those of Chicago, Nantucket, Provincetown, Lake Placid, Bridgehampton, and Paris; and recipes galore, including Homemade Dill Pickles, Mushroom Soup without Cream, Sautéed Corn off the Cob, Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges, Salmon & Israeli Couscous, and Pear Sorbet.
Your participation in the blog is what has inspired me to keep creating something I hope you'll find pleasing to look at, thought provoking, humorous, or just plain entertaining. Blogging is all about communication and I have thoroughly enjoyed our connection over the last year. Thank you, one and all, for all of your enthusiasm and support. Let's see what the new year will bring.
In the meantime, I took this opportunity to do a photographic summary of Open Window's first year. This slide show is longer than most so you may want to hold off watching it until a quiet spell comes upon you ... maybe Sunday morning. The video itself is 13 minutes and 39 seconds long, but summarizes the year we've shared, and what a year it was. Merci beaucoup and leave a comment - let us know what you think of Open Window's first year.
Photographs ©2010 Claudia Ward and Peter Tooker
Music: Mozart - Sinphonia Concertante in E Flat, K 364 - 1. Allegro Maestoso by Levon Chilingirian; Neville Marriner: Academy Of St. Martin In The Fields
Click on the square of outgoing arrows in the bottom right corner to expand the slide show.