life lately (and blogiversary number two)

eleanorblog2It’s been a busy week. Or rather, a ridiculous fortnight. Long work days, high stress, lots of autumn rain and late night milk runs in the dark. However, in the midst of all that, this little blog passed its second blogiversary on 21st May, 2014. Yes, number two.

Two years. That’s twenty four months of recipe notes, hastily snapped photographs, butter-smeared camera lenses and foodie dialogue with those whom I’m now privileged to call friends. I can hardly believe it, but yes… this blog survived its infancy. And the journey has been rather good.

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So. I guess it’s customary for the blogiversary celebrant to write a bit of an update on the blog’s evolution and other ‘happenings’ over the past twelve months. I wrote a rather extended post last year, loaded with growth points and facts about my humble (and somewhat ignorant) beginnings.

Well, this year will be a little different. In my ‘old age’, sunny enthusiasm for extended explanations has somewhat waned (I do now have a toddler blog, after all. Exhaustion is unavoidable). However, I do want to say a couple of thank-you’s and share some dot points about what will be happening for myself and Aaron as we travel into the tail end of 2014. Read on, amigos.

A huge thanks to:

  • All of you who have been following this blog since its first humble incarnation. Your comments, kind words and tips on the blog and via social media (facebook, instagram and twitter) make all of the late nights and frustrations seem worthwhile.
  • My family and friends for putting up with my food styling, photo snapping and fussing around meal times. I love you hugely.
  • The (rather large) handful of bloggers who have become beautiful friends whom I’m yet to meet. Your notes and internet hugs are always treasured.

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A few snippets of news:

  • I now have a second blog, Second-Hand Stories, which has been well-intended but woefully neglected over the past few months. It’s got nothing to do with food (very far from it!) but if you’re interested, click here to read about the contents. I’m hoping to devote more time to it over the next six months.
  • In approximately five weeks, Aaron and I will be jetting off to the Northern Hemisphere for a few months (partly for work reasons and wholly for adventures). I’m uncertain as to the availability of internet access in different places, so please understand if the frequency of my posts and other commenting seems to drop.
  • Leading on from the previous dot point, if any of you are interested in guest posting on the Mess between July and possibly November 2014, let me know via private message on facebook or twitter. Depending upon the volume of willing guest posters (ha! Or lack thereof…) I may not require every offer but I would love hear from you.

Facts and Stats:

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So, that’s it. Another blogging year completed! I cannot wait to see what the next year holds… a huge thanks to all of you for being on the journey with me.

Laura xo

*Thanks to my gorgeous friends Em and Pete for letting me use the above picture of their daughter in the opening shot. I love it. All other shots are from my Instagram account.

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129 responses

  1. Woohoo! Happy Blogiversary number two! I hope you ate copious amounts of cake and washed it down with plenty of beer…. because we all know beer and cake go hand in hand… right? Travelling to the Northern Hemisphere sounds interesting perhaps more beer and a catch up (Indian feast) is required before you go.

  2. Happy Happy Blogiversay Laura. So lovely to have ‘met’ you, and so happy to have discovered your lovely blog. Life lately for me has been yuk, so apologies for not commenting for a while… I plan to have a good read of all your beautiful posts I’ve missed lately, when I can snaffle some me time. Wishing you and your man a wonderful holiday! xxxx

    • Oh, it’s been the same for me Saskia. I haven’t read nearly as many posts as I would’ve liked to! I’ve appreciated your blogging friendship so much though! Thanks for the lovely words and inspiration! And yes, we’ll have lots of fun! xx

    • Oh thanks so much Martine! I do hope that we’ll get to hang out a bit more this next year, it’s been lovely getting to know you a little bit via the blogosphere! And yes, it’ll be great to see what this next year brings xx

    • Haha, I know what you mean – I feel like it’s been ages too (in a good way!). We’ll be going on a bit of a European tour and then doing a driving holiday around the UK (staying with family nearish London for part of it and then driving North to Scotland and Wales). Wanna meet up? Would be wonderful to give you a proper hug and gush about Ottolenghi whilst the boys drink beer! xxx

      • Ah sounds wonderful! Yes absolutely! Let me know when you’re in/near London. we could go for a mooch around Brixton village or something, would be great :-) xx

      • Hm, it’s very strongly debated! Aussies over here swear by Vegemite but as I grew up as an English kid (aeons ago now, but some things stick) I do like my Marmite. I may just bring you a jar and you can decide for yourself!

  3. Happy 2nd year blogiversary! I was looking through you blog and loved the gorgeous photos and awesome recipes you have posted! Keep up the great work and have fun travelling :)

  4. Happy two year blogiversary! Definitely something to be celebrated! I know what you mean about how popular some posts can be.. It’s a headscratcher for sure sometimes! The whims of the internet I suppose.. It’s been lovely connecting with you over the course of the last year! Have a wonderful time traveling! Best wishes to you for many more years of blogging success Laura!

    • Thanks so much Maria, I’ve hugely appreciated having you as a blog/foodie friend over the past year also! You’re a huge inspiration and I look forward to sharing many more recipes and stories together over this next year xx

  5. Hi Laura, happy blogoversary!!! Going overseas sounds like so much fun, I don’t really use FB or twitter, but if you want a guest poster I’m happy to help, just email me…

    • Thank you so much Chisa! It was so nice to meet last year… I was disappointed that we didn’t meet earlier in the conference so that we might have had a proper chat! Thanks for the kind words. I look forward to following more of your adventures in this next year of blogging! xx

  6. Congratulations on two years! And, there’s no explaining what people like and don’t like. Some of my favorites of Stephie’s only do so-so, and others blast off. Who knows? I’ve always said if I could figure out what people like and don’t like, I’d write a book, make a million dollars and not have to deal with working with people. Haha. So, when you visit the Northern Hemisphere, would you include Illinois? Although, you would be very, very disappointed in it (I wouldn’t visit here). I’m actually just kidding. Safe travels and have a blessed weekend. xx

    • Thanks so much Julie! It’s been such a pleasure getting to know you and Stephie over the past year and a bit! You know, I would absolutely love to include America in our travels also but we’re too skint to do it this time! We’re just doing a bit of Europe, seeing family in the UK… that’s it at present (I don’t suppose you’d like to come visit ENGLAND whilst I’m there?!). And yes, wouldn’t it be nice to be able to figure out the ‘next big thing’? Nothing makes sense to me in terms of internet trends. And memes… oh, don’t get me started on memes and viral videos! xx

      • I meant to respond earlier, but then forgot. I miss my brain in my old age. I can’t think of much else that I would love to do than visit England, but we’re being frugal with the money, just in case that there’s a wedding sometime in the future (note: I did not say that there WAS a wedding in the future, but just in case that there is! ;) ). I actually know people in England, now that my niece married a Brit! Enjoy your travels and take care. Check in when you can! xx

  7. Hi Laura! Congratulations on your 2 year blogging birthday! I adore having “met” you through our blogs and have learn a lot through yours. It looks like from now till the end of the year you’ll be having an exciting time. If you ever are going to have a small escape to Barcelona, please do give me a yell, so we can do something that we love (such as eating, lol). I’m following your other blog now, I’m sure it’s full of wisdom. Have a great rest of the weekend! xxx

    • Oh Sofia, I feel exactly the same about you! I’m constantly inspired by your lovely posts and it’s wonderful to compare traditions and foods from around the world. Not sure if our budget stretches to Barcelona as yet but if it does I will definitely let you know, it would be wonderful to meet up (or otherwise, would you be travelling out to England or anywhere else during the Summer months?) xxxx

      • I will warn if I go to England!. However the most likely will be to see my parents then Mr H parents and then I might also have to go to Los Angeles for w few days for something work related. I hope I do because even though I’ve been all around the place, I haven’t been to the US yet! So that would be exciting :) I love England though, as you probably know I lived there for a few years and just adore it.

  8. Congratulations beautiful! As you know I am a huge fan of your blog and recommend it to friends, family and randoms. I consider myself very privileged to have eaten meals crafted by your magical hands. Best wishes for the future of the mess.

    • Oh Elissa! Thank you so much for all of the support and love you’ve shown me and this little blog over the past couple of years. Love you heaps, missing your beautiful face! xxx

  9. Happy Blogiversary! And congrats on two years. It’s always a pleasure to come here and read what happening in your world.

    • Thank you John, it’s been a pleasure sharing the blogging year with you! You are always a great source of humour and inspiration, thanks for consistently popping over to say hello!

    • Oh yes Francesca! Stefano would be glad to know that I am already researching the wines I want to try in Italy! I actually went to an Italian natural wine night this week to learn about some of the small producers over there… it’s been heaps of fun. Thanks so much for being a wonderful blogging friend, it’s a pleasure to know you and Stefano! xx

  10. Happy blogiversary Laura!! I have adored your posts as well as getting to know you, and I look forward to your blogging years that lay ahead. :) I haven’t yet clicked the link to your second blog, but I am oh so excited to! Also, I don’t know where your Northern Hemisphere travels are to, but they really should include the U.S. Particularly North Dakota… ;) I promise the weather isn’t so bad here in the summer! Haha. Anyway, cheers to two years of blogging and being as awesome as you are! xx

    • Oh, thank you so much lovely! I really do wish that I had the funds to do the whole US and Europe trip… it’d be such a pleasure to visit you and Rob in Nth Dakota! But you know what? A friend of mine is marrying an American girl (they got engaged last week, woop!) and IF they get married in the US I might just hop on a plane and come give you a huge hug! Thanks for being an amazing friend, I really do hope that we meet one day. I’ll be bringing your playlist on holidays with me! xx

  11. A Happy 2nd Blogiversary Laura! I can’t wait to look into your newest addition to the blogging world… I’m certain it will be as beautiful and wonderful as the first! Congrats, Margot. :)

    • Oh Margot, thank you so much for these beautiful words! I do hope that you enjoy the ramblings over at Second-Hand Stories, it’s very different to what I do here but I’ve enjoyed it. I look forward to travelling through this next blogging year with you! xx

  12. Congratulations Laura!! And I’m so excited for you to be travelling, how exciting!! Whether you get internet everyday or once a week, we will all be here when you get back, waiting to hear about your adventures! Also a big thank you, I think you were the first person to ever read my about me page and comment, it made my frustratingly low page views seem less significant!

    • Hello lovely, thank you so much for the sweet words. I definitely appreciate being blogging friends with you! I didn’t remember being the first to comment on your ‘about’ section… I’m glad that I was! Keep the faith, followers take time to build but with your quality content and passion for food you’ll gain page views in no time. Thanks for travelling through the blogging year with me, I look forward to sharing more recipes and stories for years to come xx

  13. Congratulations on your second blog anniversary Laura! It has been a pleasure visiting this space since the time I discovered it. Can’t wait to read your second blog…I am sure it will be as awesome as this one. And also can’t wait to read about your travel adventures when you are back. Hope you have a lovely time!

    • Ph, Sonali you are gorgeous. Thank you for your support and love over the past year or so, it’s been a privilege to gain sweet inspiration from your fabulous photos and stories as well! Hope that you enjoyed the content over at the second blog. It’s not for everyone but I’m finding the writing process to be a valuable experience xx

  14. Congrats sweet Laura!! Happy Blogiversary!!!! Such a huge and well deserved accomplishment (we will be 2 this year as well). I’m so happy that we were able to connect this year as this little space has become one of my favorite spots to visit. I’m looking forward to checking out your other blog as well. Enjoy your upcoming travels! So fun. xoxo

    • Oh thank you so much lovely Em! It’s been such a blessing and a privilege to meet you over the last blogging year. I adore everything that you do and I am grateful for opportunities to just ‘chat’ (albeit in written form!) about food, family and everyday life. Thanks for being a gorgeous friend. I look forward to sharing our third blogging year together too (when’s your blogiversary? I will keep an eye out!) xx

  15. Happy 2nd. I hope your toddler doesn’t suffer from the “Terrible Twos!” (C&L – my toddler twins – did just fine and are now almost 4 1/2! I love your blog, and I love your posts. As I have told you before, you paint wonderful word pictures, and I want to be part of every party you and Aaron throw!

    Where will your Northern Hemisphere travels take you? Anywhere near Arizona? Let me know! :)

      • 4 1/2! Wow, you’ll have to have a party for their fifth, complete with cake! Thank you so, so much for being a wonderful blogging friend David. It always means a lot to swap recipes, stories and anecdotes together… I’ve come to think of you as one of my very good friends, despite being yet to meet! I do want to take a trip out your way soon, but unfortunately our budget only stretches to UK/Europe at present. However, Aaron and do have a friend who’s recently gotten engaged to an American girl and it looks like their wedding may be in the USA… so if that’s the case, I’m on the first bus to Arizona (well, after their wedding of course!) x

    • Oh thank you so much Ksenia! Yes, we’ll be gallavanting around Europe for a little while so it would be lovely to meet up at some point if you’ll be in France (or elsewhere) over the summer! We can’t make it over to the USA at this point though so I will have to get myself organised (and save more money!) for a trip out another time xx

  16. Laura, I feel so privileged to have just found you and am looking forward to following along during your third year of blogging. It seems as if we will be swapping places over these next months. You are flying off to the N. hemisphere and I’m coming to the southern! :-) Love the sound of those lamb burgers with beetroot relish. Ooh, could just eat one of those for my Sunday evening snack!

    • Thanks lovely Helen, yes we’re swapping over! I do hope that you enjoy your time here in Australia… it’s wintry but mild in comparison to the northern hemisphere :) I’m glad we found each other too, you have a beautiful blog and I look forward to sharing more inspiration! x

  17. I love your blog and wish you a very happy 2nd blogiversary. Sounds like very exciting things under foot, good for you. I look forward to many more great recipes, beautiful photo’s and well written reviews along with whatever else you see fit to share with us. Sounds like a very exciting and busy time for you, safe travels!

    • Oh Suzanne, thanks so much for the lovely note! If I remember rightly, you were one of the first regular readers of this blog back in 2012. It’s been wonderful to get to know you and I will always be grateful for your friendship and support, I love your blog also and I look forward to many more years of sharing recipes and stories xx

  18. Happy 2nd blogiversary, Laura! It has been such a joy and pleasure to get to know you through your beautiful words and evocative photos. Wishing you many more years of blog posts – so we can all continue to enjoy your food and life vicariously.

    • Oh Stacy, thanks so much! It’s meant a lot to be blogging friends with you, you continuously inspire me through your inventive recipes and stories about Dubai. I do hope that we’ll be sharing together for years to come! xx

  19. Happy blogiversary my friend. Was there a party and possibly you were too busy and forgot my invite? All good, we’ll make up for it some day I’m sure. Smiley faces all over the place. Here’s to many more young lady. I shall raise my glass, tip my hat and perform a short interpretative dance

    • Graz, if there was a proper party you would’ve been first on the guest list! This one was more like me sitting on the couch with a beer, typing words into cyberspace. Definitely not worth your trouble! I definitely hope that we’ll be swapping banter for years to come my friend! Thanks for being an awesome source of inspiration, humour and cooking tips over the past year or so. You’re a cool cat!

  20. Congratulations! 2 years is an achievement and I’ve enjoyed reading all about your adventures and tasty experiments. Look forward to many, many more. Are you coming to the US? You and Aaron are welcome here anytime xx

    • Oh Nazneen, thank you so, so much for that generous offer! You’re beautiful inside and out. I do wish I was going to the US but at the moment we’re restricting ourselves to a UK/Europe trip, mostly to see relatives and friends but also to do a bit of exploring before we look at becoming much poorer (eg. buying a house or having children!). I would love to meet someday though. Watch this space, it might happen! Thanks for being a beautiful blogging friend and source of inspiration for me. I’m grateful for every ‘chat’ that we have xxx

  21. Happy second blogiversary, Laura! I’m coming up on 2 years too in a week and I know what a wonderful accomplishment it is. Isn’t it strange what posts people gravitate towards? Your most popular post is pickles, mine is cheesy beer bread or nachos, even though 95% of what I write about is dessert! I love it! Anyways, I hope you had something delicious to celebrate for your blogiversary. Here’s to many more years ahead of you!

    • Thanks Nancy! Yes, it is rather long time, huge congrats back to you for the two year mark also! As for post popularity, anything with cheese I can understand but… pickles? That baffles me! Your dessert recipes rock though. Maybe the stats don’t add up because you have so much dessert goodness on there (diffusion of visits through the dessert mecca?). Ah, whatever. Anyway, lovely to be blogging friends with you and I wish both of us many more years of friendship and foodie goodness. Thanks for taking the time to write x

    • Oh wow, I didn’t realise that! How cool… I can’t believe your blog is only a year old, you’ve achieved so much in that time frame! Here’s to many more joint blogiversaries… though I’ll always be the older sister (darn it. Everyone knows that the younger sibling is more fun!) xx

  22. Yay congrats lovely Laura! You are one gifted woman – you have inspired so many of us in many ways, for me….well, I may never reach your culinary heights – I have only just learnt to boil eggs afterall…but I am inspired because if we follow our creative hearts like you have done we can achieve amazing things and make the world a better place. So keep posting those exquisite and scrumptious recipes which are made so enticing by your beautiful words and images – they are sufficient for those of us who can’t always smell or taste your creations and instead they nourish the soul.
    Lots of love xxx

    • Oh Lucy Lou, you totally underestimate how amazing you are. I feel blessed to have you as a generous-hearted, beautiful creative sister and I know that we will be sharing precious times for years to come! Thanks for writing this beautiful note. Love you xxxx

  23. Oh happy one. No! Two. And I didn’t realise you have a second blog. Shall have to check that out as I always love your writing. Couldn’t wait. Will happily read through some tomorrow as it’s that time – beauty sleep! And keep blogging. Your posts are always so wonderful.

    • Aw, thanks so much Johnny. I appreciate the encouragement as sometimes I really wonder whether people want to read my dribble (or just look at nice pictures of food!). I am a big fan of your blogs too. No idea how you keep up with it all though, I always feel like I am seriously drowning in my attempts to keep up to date! Thanks again J!

  24. Happy second blogiversary! Although I am only a new internet friend I already love your blog.
    Enjoy all your travels. I look forward to reading all about your adventures over the next few months!

    • Amy! Thank you beautiful. It’s been an honour to become new blogging friends… I love your positivity, your healthy and nourishing treats and your attitude towards human relationships. Thnaks for inspiring me in the short time we’ve known each other! I look forward to many more years of sharing! x

  25. Happy blogiversary, and congratulations :) I love reading your blog, so here’s to many more blogiversaries to come! Also, I totally get Indian lime pickle being so popular – so delicious. The people have spoken! More lime! More pickles! ;)

    • Hahaha… yes, maybe I should be listening rather than just feeling boggled by the idea. More pickles indeed!! Thanks so much for the kind words Caeli, love being blogging friends with you! xx

    • Naw, thanks Pamela! It’s a blessing to be blog friends across the seas! I’m always inspired by your amazing recipes, your rooftop garden and your general creativity. Cannot wait to share another year of goodness xx

  26. Laura!! Happy two years!!! I love how you refer to your blog as a toddler!! so true!!! oh my goodness, can you tell us more about your trip to the Northern Hemisphere?! Sounds amazing!! emailing you now!

  27. The happiest of blogiversary’s to you Laura!!! I’m so glad I discovered your blog via Karista and I’m so excited for your holiday to the Northern hemisphere. I’m sure there will be some incredible posts and pics to enjoy! I loved your lime pickle recipe and it’s easy to see why so many folks would love it as they do!

    Big internet hug all the way from Sydney!

    • I had forgotten that you first found me via Karista’s Kitchen! How cool is that! I am so, so glad to have become blogging friends with you Alice. You’re an inspiration, a generous and creative heart and I would love to meet up if you ever come to Perth (or if I go to Sydney… hm!). Thanks so much for the encouragement lovely, hugs back xx

    • Oh you definitely undersell yourself lovely! I am a big fan of your blog and I’m very glad to have shared the blogging year together! Thanks for the kind words xx

    • Oh Ruby, thank you so much for the lovely comment. It’s been heaps of fun sharing the blogging year together, I am constantly inspired by your twists on different recipes! Thanks for being a lovely friend! x

  28. I’ve just recently found your blog–love your style and beautiful photos!! Here’s to all those posts you’ve sent out and best wishes for all that’s ahead!!

    • Thanks Rhonda, it’s always been fun stopping over at your blog too… I look forward to many more ‘chats’ across the internet over this next year! x

  29. Happy belated blogiversary! From what I can see, your blog is a smashing success. :) Your photos are just lovely, always. Cute shoes, too! :)

  30. Big time congrats, dear Laura, and happy belated second blog-iversary (sorry, I am still very much in catch up mode)! It is a big milestone, as it shows all the commitment, enthusiasm and energy that you put in sticking to this blogging thing for 24 months sustaining the über-quality of each one of your posts, both content-wise and “packaging”-wise. Your blog is super sleek and your photographs are anything but “hastily snapped photographs”, let me tell you! I long-distance toast to you, your blog and your adventures to come: well done and looking forward for much more! Also, congrats on blog #2: an exciting project, and an even greater commitment – you are raising the bar even higher!
    A big hug! :-)

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