Monday, 2 May 2011

Reflections on the A to Z Challenge

I want to start by thanking Kim at the Lunch Box, on whose blog I first saw the A to Z Challenge badge, and Lee at Tossing it Out, the force behind the challenge, as well as the other challenge hosts.

As some of you know, I started the Jim's Girl Family History Blog in mid-March 2011 for the purpose of sharing family history and genealogy research among my cousins.  I knew nothing of blog challenges, memes, awards or much of anything in blogging culture.  Then I saw the challenge badge and decided to find out what it was about.  I liked the mental challenge of coming up with genealogy-related stories for each of the 26 letters of the alphabet.  I also saw the challenge as a push, "into the deep end" if you will, to post frequently.

I may have underestimated the effort it would take to post 26 times in one month.  Whew!  I also underestimated how many other A to Z challengers would read my posts and make comments.  Remember, my intended audience was just cousins (albeit in some cases fourth cousins once removed, by marriage).

I tried to visit other blogs in the challenge, but a full time job, travel, Easter and the ever-present pressure to write more blog posts limited the number I could read.  Nonetheless, the A to Z challenge introduced me to a several interesting blogs I will follow in the future, blogs I'd never have found without the challenge.  It also brought me some new followers.

It's true I didn't enjoy the pressure to research and compose on a strict deadline.  In the future, you can expect more thoroughly researched, though less frequent posts interspersed with short blurbs on this and that; probably a few posts per week.  I hope my cousins will stay with me into the future.  And I hope some of the A to Z challengers will continue to follow my posts as well.  Who knows, maybe we are cousins after all.

Before I go...thanks to Cousin Sam and my mom for fine-tuning some recipes, to  Aunty Anna for the picture of her gorgeous genetti cookies, and to my Sweetie and the Bean for their patience.  And, Arlee Bird, how can I thank you enough?!

Check out the reflections of other challengers via Tossing it Out.


  1. Fabulous reflections post! And congrats on staying on topic for all 26 letters, family history blogs would be one of the most challenging, I would think.
    And I am looking forward to our lunch in August!

  2. I missed visiting during the Challenge. Good to meet you. Congrats on finishing. I’m looking forward to next year!

  3. I know, I know--I'm way late, but the Challenge and a busy May schedule really put me behind. I'm trying my best to catch up now and it seems rather futile.

    In any case, congratulations on meeting the April 2011 Challenge with your unique blog. You made a very different contribution with your posts. Thanks for being a part of Blogging from A to Z.

    Tossing It Out