9 Life lessons from 9 years of blogging


It’s 9 years today since the very first post was written (by Rob nonetheless) on this blog. This will be the 2,292nd post. There’s been 49,000 comments and almost 5 million page views over that time.


Whilst there are now a whole lot of other people other than my family out there who read my blog, this blog is still just about me. My family. Our life. For me. It’s an amazing collection of memories, our family’s story up till now woven with words and pictures, happiness, tears, travels, births, successes and failures. It’s as precious to me as the people in it for it holds it all wrapped up neatly together in a little bit of cyber space. And we all know how I like neat.

There’s so much that blogging has taught me over the years. About myself, about others, about being a Mum, and wife and friend. It might just look like a webpage to others, but for me this blog has been life changing. And life teaching. It’s about the only thing (besides eating) that I will happily do each and every day. It’s easy and challenging all in one, but something that I will happily practice each day. I’m not even sure I could stop, even if I wanted.

I thought I’d share just some of the life lessons that blogging has taught me. That blinking curser on my screen sure has taught me some stuff. Here’s just one for each year I’ve been at it.

1. Women are complex

We really are. We are creatures that need to talk about stuff because we think about A LOT of stuff, all the time. While Rob and I could be sitting side my side in silence he could be thinking of 1 thing, or nothing, and I will be thinking of 24, whilst thinking of another 4 from yesterday and 45 for tomorrow. We like to share and discuss things and over analyse things. We need to work stuff out by talking about it, thinking about it, asking for advice and experiences on it. We are the hardest workers out there, as Mothers, the most loving and caring always putting our own needs last. We are stronger than we ever give ourselves credit for able to run a marathon, survive on no sleep, grown whole humans in our bodies. We are our each others best supporters always willing to bolster and support a friend or even an online stranger and each others worst enemies, attacking each other with judgement especially when comparison comes into play. Sheesh, I AM one, have given birth to 3 of them and speak to hundreds and thousands of us every year and I still can’t work us out.

2. Be mindful

Stopping to write each day has given me a certain amount of mindfulness that I truly believe has made my own life richer and happier. To stop in a moment, look around at it, BE in it – whether that’s taking a photo to capture it, or remembering it for a blog post later really allows you to soak up what is happening in your life. Whether it’s racing to capture the late afternoon light in autumn for a photo, or writing down about a tough experience you are going through, it allows you to really be in a moment, in a week, a year, in life.

3. Things are not always as they seem

For some people, they will only share with you the good bits. On Facebook, blogs, Instagram in a boardroom or at school pick up you will see the highlight reel and that’s it. For others, they may revel in the negativity and hardness of their life or circumstance. Regardless of which side of the fence they sit on, you only ever see what people want you to see. My house always is as tidy as it seems, because I am crackers and make it so regardless of how it may kill me to achieve it. I hope that if we were to meet I would be EXACTLY as how you know me to be on here. That said, there’s still a whole lot about me and my world that you don’t know about. Some stuff I won’t talk about, pictures that I won’t take, stuff with friends and other bloggers that doesn’t need to be played out online. People share what they want you to see and even in day to day life with friends and family…there’s always things going on behind closed doors or screens that you’ll never know about.

4. Story telling is powerful

We might all be turning into digital natives that spend too much time with our heads down online with the ability to comment anonymously with quick witty one-liners but at heart, humans still love to hear stories. To be able to tell a story is a powerful gift and one that people will connect with. Tell a story with humour, with honesty, with heart and you will win people over. Essentially I believe that we all still just want to connect with others, experience shared emotions and stories. Just as we listened as children to the stories told to us, we still need to hear stories to learn and grow and remember. To connect to people’s emotions and their own experience, to make them think differently about something, or just to stop and think for a moment, is a true gift. Use it.

5. You are not responsible for making anyone FEEL anything

I know myself that I have been guilty on so many occasions of saying things like “oh she is just so annoying with the way she does x, y or z”. I certainly know that I’ve had plenty of people have a go at me about x, y or z because I shouldn’t complain about children because you’re lucky to have them in the first place, or about doing the groceries, because you are lucky you have money to buy food in the first place, so on and so forth. People’s reactions (including my own) have nothing to do with what someone else does, it’s everything to do with ME/you. Why do we react a certain way when we see someone do something? Why does that make us SO angry, or outraged? Most of the time it’s to do with me and my history or circumstance and NOTHING to do with that person or situation. Think about why you react the way that you do. Think about when someone reacts a certain way to you. YOU are not responsible for the reactions of others, or to the feelings that others will have. You DO have control over how you react to them though. If you stop worrying about what people will think or react when you do something and just do… you will have freedom.

6. Capture the every day

I had a diary from the age of 12 till 18 that I wrote in every night. My Mum did it too, still does it, and encouraged us all to write down our thoughts, or what we had been up to. I LOVE reading back on these diaries now…all that angst, all those mundane everyday moments from a time captured. This blog has done the same for me…an amazing slice of our family life from the past 9 years all written down, photos taken. I am amazed at just how quickly I forget stuff (having just had a new baby after almost 6 years I had completely forgotten SO much) but at any time I can come back and have a read and remember. Taking the time to write down your thoughts can help you work stuff out (see point 1 women ARE complex) and capture a moment of your life in time. It’s an amazing thing to have… to look back and see where you’ve come, and to look forward to dream and make plans of where you would like to go.

7. The world is smaller than you think

Awake in the middle of the night with a child that has woken from a night terror? Fighting with your husband over something stupid? Dealing with a loved one who is sick? KNOW THIS: somewhere, someone in the world is going through the EXACT same thing. The internet has made the world a smaller place (I have spent many a Instagram stalk on someone’s holiday in Positano) and made me realise that regardless of country or culture we are all going through the same stuff, wanting the same things. The things that tie us together and drive us (as women and Mum’s as that’s who I mostly deal with on my blog) are the same no matter where we come from. We want to love and be loved. Have a safe place for our families. For our kids to be self confident and assured and be kind to others. We want to have a laugh, have fun, feel like our partners still want us, love us, despite our tired crankiness. We want to see the world and feel like we are contributing to it in some way. We want to challenge ourselves and still learn even though we spend our days cleaning play doh out of the cracks of our tables, or cleaning toilets. I love that I can have a chat with like minded people all over the world at any time of the day or night (thanks to middle of the night breastfeeding).

8. To thine own self be true

Every post I’ve written is an honest reflection of me…good or bad…swearing, being stupid or trying to be profound. They are me. I had a card on my wall growing up that my Mum gave me with this Hamlet quote on it. Starting a blog? Make it YOUR story. The minute you try to be someone else, or try and copy a style or person it will never work…because it’s not you. You are you and no one can do that better than you! Whether it’s blogging, or parenting, at work or in sporting way, don’t compare yourself to others, put your head down, be yourself and get on with your own race. The minute you stop thinking about what other people are doing, or what they’ll think of you, and just do it, in an honest way, you’ll do well. Everything will flow better, because you’re being you! That other quote that comparison is the thief of joy was onto to something.

9. You have things to teach people

Every day as you go about your business you are doing things that come easily to you. Things that you don’t even have to think twice about to do. It could be going for a run, knitting a jumper, cooking a boiled egg,  playing games with your kids, doing your job, folding a bloody fitted sheet…whatever. You are an expert at it and you have things you can teach people. I am amazed at some of the questions that I get asking about things that seem so simple to me. There are so many things that seem really hard to ME that I bet you can do. Teach people! We all still want to learn stuff, and I bet there’s stuff you could teach your partner, friends, family or kids face to face, in a blog post, in a status update. Share the knowledge! Pay it forward and keep learning.

So here I am all these posts and so many words and pictures later, wishing my blog (who is older than any of my kids) a happy 9th Birthday. This blog has given me purpose, direction, friendships, life changes, travel, humour, fun, creativity, therapy…so much. It’s given me YOU too. Your thoughts, your comments and friendships, humour and connections. You’ve made me feel less alone, less scared, confident, happy on a shitty day and connected. YOU all remind me that people in this world are essentially good. That we all really at the end of the day want the same things. That the things that truly matter in life are love, friendships, family, happiness, kindness. All of this is reflected in your words written to me every day in comments and emails.

Thank you.

Here’s to some more stories, some more pictures, some more sharing, some more blogging.

Thank goodness for blogging.


  1. 9 years – what an accomplishment!
    Congrats Beth, and yes, thank goodness for blogging!

  2. Brilliant achievement Beth. Thank you for being out there on the interweb. You make it better. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  3. Happy happy 9th anniversary Beth. I for one am VERY glad you come here every day to share a piece of your life. You never ever ever fail to make me smile or laugh or think or cry and that is the best gift.
    No 3 on your list scares me as our kids grow up in the digital age with no knowledge of a world pre FB and insta. How do we convince them that not everyone’s life is the perfect highlight reel they present online and that they are ok being who they are? I just dunno.

  4. 9 years is an impressive effort Beth! I love to pop into your world every day or so, and see what you’re up to. Thanks for sharing your stories.

  5. Congratulations! 9 years and you’ve certainly made your mark in the bloggersphere. Thanks for sharing your life. I love my daily dose of Beth!

  6. Congrats on 9 years. Great points and yes point 3 is one of the things thats concerns me most especially with teen girls. I keep harping on to them that you only see on fb and insta what people want you to see. I have to admit I have culled a few blog posts to my mailbox recently as everything posted seems too perfect .However, you keep it real.

  7. Wow! Super Congrats on such an achievement Beth. 9 Years! Wow 🙂 Love all these points that you have made, such good lessons to take on especially as a new blogger. P.S – Number 8 – I had that quote tattooed on me! oxox

  8. Mrs Woog says

    Oh god Bev, that is such a wonderful post. I will never forget when we first connected. It was after Harry’s cat Wilson died and you sent him a gift. Then I met you at a conference and you got changed in my room, into that HOT Charlie Brown dress and I made you wear glittery eyeliner. There has been many holidays taken together since. I could not imagine my life without you in it. VIVA LA BLOGGING!

  9. So true..

    Every word.

    Thank you…. xx

  10. Anna : Colour me Anna says

    Serious props to continue blogging for so long so congratulations! And yes, life teaches us wonderful lessons if we stop to look at where we’ve been we realise how far we’ve come x

  11. Great post! Congrats!

  12. You’ve come a long way Baby (Mac)! 9 years is so long and you have all those wonderful (and not so) moments to laugh, cry and scream about – what a treasure.

    To thine own self be true was my primary school motto, it was up in front of us every Friday in the hall for assembly. Unfortunately, it took me longer than primary school to figure out its true meaning. I have had it as my personal motto for several years now, it will always hold you in good stead.

  13. Happy 9th blogiversary! I love what you do here. Thank you for writing, photographing, sharing, inspiring. I hope there will be cake and champagne today. x

  14. The best post to read on a Tuesday morning. Congratulations on 9 years of blogging and this post sums up neatly why we keep coming back to reading you blog and many others. Thank you for another poignant post with so many valuable points, to say they all resonated is an understatement. Thank you for keeping it real and may you celebrate well with bubbles & yummy stuff xx

  15. Oh Beverley … I cannot imagine my life without you in it. I too remember meeting you in that hot Charlie Brown dress. Please tell me you still have it. Thank the gods for blogging and bringing this world of complex women closer. x

  16. Congratulations Beth on 9 years of blogging. Love lessons 5 & 8. I have been blogging for 3 years and it has opened up a new world for me too.

  17. Thank goodness for blogging indeed! I wouldn’t know you and am now living a very different life than before. Congrats on an amazing 9 years Beth, and don’t ever stop x

  18. 9 years! NINE years!!! That is such a lovely collection of you and thank you for sharing it with us. Oh and thank you for using A LOT instead of ALOT. Warms the cockles and shows you just how OCD we can all be 🙂

  19. I’m such a latecomer to blogging but I’m so glad I arrived. You are THE pioneer of blogging and like fabulous cheese and wine, you’re aged very well! x

  20. Congratulations on 9 years!! Look at all that wisdom those 9 years have brought – thank you for sharing! Here’s to another 9 (and then some)! 🙂

  21. Congratulations on 9 years! I love all your lessons. X

  22. Well done Beth on 9 years. You are one of only a handful of blogs I check regularly. Not sure why. As in, like all things in life, sometimes we are just drawn somewhere and as we cannot go and be everywhere all the time, its cool to simply follow the places we are drawn to, and learn what we can there. I appreciate your writing and admire your writing consistency. & manner of life. Arohanui (big love) Many Blessings Theresa (who taught you of Thin Places x)

  23. Happy Birthday Blog! This is a good excuse to sing and eat cake right?! I’ve only been reading for a year or so and can’t even remember how I stumbled upon your blog but I’m so glad that I did.
    Been meaning to ask how Harper is going with kindy now that we’re half way through the year? My little preschooler finally seems to have found her groove, accepted that she’s there 2 days a week and we haven’t had tears at drop off now for quite awhile. Only took 6 months!! Phew!
    Also how are your girls going adjusting to Maggie’s arrival, less attention from Mummy, a huge adjustment etc? I hope they’re used to this new normal and love having a little sister. Keep blogging Beth. We need you!

  24. Happy Bloggy Birthday Beth,

    I found you four years ago and I have loved the warmth, humour and honesty I found inside your slice of the internet. I like your readers too. And your bloggy mates. It’s a good scene you have established lady, well done xxx

    ps: Beware of spell check. It kept wanting me to wish you a happy bloody birthday and tell you about your bloody mates. Geeez.

  25. Amanda G. says

    Congratulations! A very cool post on your 9 year anniversary. I love having your blog in my every day. It, and you, are amazing!

  26. Louise Thomsen says

    Congrats to you Beth! And thank goodness for blogging and making the world smaller! xx

  27. Great post. Inspiring. In fact so inspiring I just went to my blog and did a new post. I’ve been heavy headed and slack. I also put in a link to you for your lemon curd recipe. I’ve been eating it constantly. This morning I had it with leftover strawberry and apple crumble with cream. Absolute perfection.

  28. Congratulations on an incredible achievement. May there be many, many more posts to come! x

  29. You’re still one of my faves lady c

  30. So insightful! Something for every person who is reading this ( and probably alot of people who should be reading this!).

  31. Congratulations on 9 years. I love you’re blog and the honesty that comes through in your writing. As a reader I feel like I really get to know you. I’m sure you’ll keep writing for many years, and hope that one day my readers feel the same about my blog. Thanks for inspiring me and many others to write.

  32. Maxabella says

    One of the very first blogs I ever read and the very first blogger I ever met in real life: my dear Beth. Happy birthday, BabyMac. Keep doing what you do ‘ cos you do it so well. xxx

  33. You are the first blog I check every morning, despite you being half a world away! You make me laugh and cry, keep up the good work. Love this blog. xx

  34. Lisa Mckenzie says

    Happy 9th birthday to your blog Beth I love how real you are and such true words,I love this post thank you Xx

  35. Congrats on 9 years Beth x

  36. Sue McCarney says

    “…..and to thine own self, you,have only ever been true.” Congratulations on this incredible achievement, proud of you every day, and will always be. ❤️

  37. I would have missed this post if the wonderful Mrs Woog hadn’t shared it on Facey. How wonderful are bloggers? And how awesome are women? This is a great post. Congratulations on nine years and thanks for reminding me about all the important things in life – and blogging. x

  38. What a lovely, reflective way of celebrating nine years of blogging. Such a massive effort Beth you should be justly proud of what you’ve achieved.

    You’re an inspiration to me and no doubt many others. xx

  39. I loved this! Happy bloggy birthday. I’ve been blogging 9 months, a few months in I paid too much attention to comparison and got lost. These days I concentrate on my readers, my voice and I’m freakin in love with blogging…such a gift! I love your blog, I especially love your little family and charming house and I hope to be blogging 9 years from now. Celebrate! X

  40. Happy Birthday to your blog! And big congrats to you Beth. I’ve only been on the scene 5 minutes (bit longer) but I don’t think I’ve read a post yet that hasn’t inspired me in some way. And this one is just off the richter! Thank you for sharing your lessons. You most certainly are teaching me! More than you know 🙂

  41. Congratulations, Beth. I’m relatively new to your blog and I really love it. I enjoy your honest perspective and I find it so refreshing in a time when blogs seem to be disappearing or becoming less relate-able. Here’s to many more years of blogging for us both.

  42. Congratulations Beth! it is a pleasure to read your blog and follow you on Insta and Facebook. This particular piece has struck a cord and helped me more than you could ever know. Thank you, Kathy xo

  43. What a beautiful post. So many life lessons you have learned along the way Beth. Congratulations on hitting 9 years of blogging. Here’s hoping you hit another 9. Keep up the fabulous work 🙂

  44. Happy Birthday to your lovely blog. Love the lessons you have learned … so true and beautifully written.

  45. Bravo lady! Epic effort. You really are one of the OG bloggers!
    Absolutely loved reading this post as well…it really is so important to take a moment and look back before you move forward

  46. Congratulations on making it 9 years with the blog. I’ve been losing focus and purpose with mine and your sage words have come at the most wonderfully timed moment. Thanks- and good luck with the next 9!

  47. Sarah-Jane says

    Congratulations!!! After finding you through 4 kids 20 suitcases and a beagle I’ve loved following as an Aussie expat living in Nigeria and now Russia. Your chicken soup is our chicken soup and I love following the seasons through your blog especially now as they are opposite to here.

  48. Self-belief is so incredibly important. Because if you don’t believe you can achieve a vision/goal, then you won’t even start to do the work needed to achieve that vision/goal. You’re inspiring. Thanks for this share. 🙂

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