Today officially marks the the one year anniversary of my blog jmbalme! That’s a good enough excuse for cake, right?! It has been quite the year since I kick-started this blog, here are a few of my favourite posts from the last 12 months as well as a little giveaway to celebrate!
The first blog entry I ever wrote was a look into my perfume collection. I have quite the extensive collection of perfume, and wanted to share it with you. I must admit, somewhat sheepishly, that it has grown by at least two in the past 12 months as well!
It was also the first time I properly tried my new camera, and I must admit the results turned out rather well. It did take me about 6 months to change from an auto setting to manual however, but everything in moderation.
My favourite blog of the whole year would have to be the first review I did of the Alchemist. Not only was this the first time I had done a good and proper review of a restaurant, I also gave a lot of time to thinking about how to write the review. Creative writing has always been a passion of mine – my degree is in Journalism, it’s just that often I don’t get to embrace this part of my life. That was entirely the reason I created the blog – I wanted an outlet, for me, where I could write to my heart’s content about the things that took my fancy
I remember being scared to take my camera into The Alchemist and to take pictures of my meal. I didn’t want to offend anyone, or get asked what I was doing. I’m not the most confident, and I know I need to work on that and my ability to speak about and promote my blog, because why shouldn’t I? At the time this picture became one of my most liked on Instagram, so I knew investing in a decent camera was definitely the right move!
For a similar reason I really like the blog of saturday tea from August. As well as writing, food is another one of my passions – anyone who has me on Instagram/Twitter will know this! In Chez Balme we each take it in turns to cook on a Saturday evening, and I like to write about my turns. Ignoring the fact that there are sometimes grumbles about the length and cost of my ingredients list I very much enjoy cooking and baking.
The reason this one stuck out was because it was the first time I had consciously thought of the styling of my food, even drawing it out on a plate beforehand. It was one of the few posts that I shared via Facebook, and my colleagues commented on how fantastic the food had looked. I can’t wait for when I eventually move out (housing crisis, yeah?), to be able to invite friends round for meals and supper clubs and to make them so many edible delights whilst honing my skills.
One of my first attempts at styling photos in my blog posts was this review of the Body Shop Expert Facial Masks. Body Shop also seem to be really good at interacting with and sharing blogger’s reviews and I have had a really positive experience with them. I’ve also been to a few of their events and any time I get an email I rush to sign up.
I know I need to be better at styling my posts, and do something more than just positioning them on my shelf. Often it is hard to find the right props for photos, or to find something that compliments the items perfectly.
The first post showcasing a brand I like, featuring my entire L’Occitane collection, is also a highlight. At time L’Occitane was one of my favourite brands – it still is, though you may have noticed that I haven’t been shopping there as much recently.
I have other collection posts to come in the next few months, including my tea collection as well as my Lush collection. I like writing these posts that give an overview of what I own from a specific brand, as it gives me a chance to give a more in depth critique.
Many of my posts feature Lush and it has become somewhat of a staple on my blog. The day that I made my own Comforter Bubble Bar sticks out in my mind, as I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Lush is one of my favourite stores as, particularly with my local Leeds branch, the customer service is so supreme. I went in the other week to try out the new Mother’s day range and I’ll be back in this Friday for the Easter goodies.
I have quite a few blog posts that I need to catch up on. In the folder where I keep all my images, there are many, many pictures for reviews that need to be written. I’m not always the best at posting regularly, but I promise to try more!
To celebrate the one year anniversary of jmbalme I am having a giveaway – one lucky follower will receive this Lush Best Friends gift set worth £24.95! In the gorgeous box, taken from the Mother’s day range, is five items including the Ups-a-daisy Bath Bomb and Ladybird Bubble Bar! To be in with a chance of winning this fantastic set all you have to do is follow my blog, using the button on the left of the page! It doesn’t matter if you don’t have a WordPress account, you can always sign up via email. On March 26th a winner will be chosen at random by my Mother (seems fitting), and contacted by the 28th of March, this is open to UK residents only. If you want to learn more about the Mother’s Day range at Lush, check back over the next couple of days when I will be posting my thoughts!
I’m really glad to have made it through an entire year and still have the passion and enthusiasm for my blog. Yes, there have been times where I haven’t been able to or wanted to post, these past 12 months have been quite something, but I hope in another 12 that I will still have that same drive.