I could say something like ‘oh, I’m so surprised Twenty Swans lasted so long’ but I’m not. Amazingly it has been something I regularly go back to without complaining or finding it boring for too long. I still love it for making me feel like people want to hear what I want to say, and for letting me say things without too much of the spazzing and stuttering and holding back when I speak about things in person.
My hypes over skincare and makeup blogging have recently dwindled but it’s definitely more of a routine that I enjoy now (rather than a momentary love), and I’ve found that I’m purchasing less and less, and hoarding less and destashing more often.
Following on from last year, here are some stats from WordPress. (I wish I could use Google Analytics with Wordpress.com but I’m not paying £20 a month for that..)
- The total amount of views for the blog in 2017 was over quadruple the amount in 2016, with almost twenty times the count for 2015. Average views per day was 54 (which I want to get to 100!). My WordPress followers hit 200, as well – in fact it’s shot past 250 now. Hello, friends!
- I’ve posted twice as much in 2017 compared to 2016, largely beauty things. I do want to go back to branching out this year, though. More books. More knitting. More trips to cafes and more of myself, too!
- My most viewed post in 2016 is STILL this sheet mask review and the views for it have increased as well with the total view count, although it only accounts for under a third of this year’s views compared to over a half of last year’s!
I haven’t actually prepared a Blog Gift this year. Previous ones have included the lovely blog header you see above (made that myself!) and better photos since getting the camera. This year, I am fussing about dropping some of my Xmas season earnings on moving to WordPress’ Personal plan and getting a domain name, more image space and maybe even changing the theme, but that isn’t a priority. It could probably wait another year. I get paid just as this post goes up, so you’ll know when it happens, LOL.
However, I’ve at least updated my social media icons and my about page (check it out!) and am working on getting a small logo sorted to match the header.
[Edit: I did it! I’m now twentyswans.com!! SO EXCITING.]
(It’s funny how I adore makeup yet am always too lazy to do my face for a mini-shoot like this. All I’m wearing is the discontinued Burberry Satin Lip Cover in 06 Rosewood, my current love. The cat ears were on sale from River Island.)
On that note, I am wondering what else I can do to make this blog better. Maybe I should finally start kicking up the social media more? It’s not really part of what I enjoy about blogging and actually, my experience with it is that it hasn’t helped *that* much with my stats. But perhaps as a person, I could try engaging more with the community. A part of me hadn’t realised how social blogging really is and would rather I continue talking to myself. Thoughts?
After last year’s mindful things, did I do anything about them? Well…
- I haven’t finished that novel.
- I improved with to-do lists. I make small list items and I usually don’t limit myself to a day with them. However, I only use them when I have lots to do and my time has been better organised this year so I haven’t needed the to-do lists as much!
- I still suck at keeping in mind my goals throughout the year.
- I’ve been knitting more! I finished a cowl, and made two hats!
- I’ve been reading about the same amount, if not less, but I’m proud that I’ve kept it up. I’ve been to some book signings for the first time this year, so that’s one thing – I want to go to more bookish events. I have one lined up this month!
- There’s been a lot of personal spending, but since starting uni, my budget is better managed at the moment and more money is going into my savings. Hopefully, that will improve into the new year.
Here are the things I want to be mindful of this year:
- Just write a little every day. A scene idea, a character profile, something. Every. Day.
- Do more cardio. More than usual. By ‘usual’, I mean I don’t exercise so it is literally better than nothing. I mean, I walk 40 minutes to my Saturday job and, once a week, I do short leg workouts in my bedroom but that’s not enough, is it?? Maybe dig out the skipping rope?
- Spend less money on snacks. Eat fewer snacks in general. Prepare more of my own food for when I’m at uni during the day. Or visit more cafes.
- Just accept the fact that manga and k-pop are still the two things that will set me off talking forever and not feel self-conscious or utterly dorky for it. I spent a while being the weird kid for it and that kind of mindset still hasn’t left me.
- Whittle down my wardrobe to the basics, by being more reasonable about what I will and won’t wear. Compared to makeup, I don’t spend anywhere near as much on clothes anyway, but I want to make it all basic items that I know will last and not be afraid to spend a little more on quality. No more coral. No more sleeveless tops.
Here’s to another year, and last of all, THANKS FOR READING, EVERYONE.
Until next time,
Days since last buying lipstick: 17
Lipstick worn most recently: [discontinued] Burberry Satin Lip Cover 06 Rosewood (I’ve been at home and not doing anything, so this carries over from last time!)