Friday, October 3, 2008

Celebrate! (And a Giveaway)

I wish we were having a real party, but let's have a blog party to celebrate my 200th post! I'll wait while you grab some chips and salsa or something chocolatey and read on.

When I started this blog, I was just looking for an outlet and something that would encourage me to look for ways to "relish motherhood". What I've found is a lot of friends, a place where I can be myself, and a chance to work on my rusty old writing skills. I've been able to chronicle some of our comings and goings, milestones of our kids, but mostly just how I feel about things.

Sometimes I feel guilty about blogging--perhaps because I enjoy it so much, perhaps because it doesn't feel productive, because it takes away from time I could spend serving someone else. But then I get a comment from one of you, or a friend mentions that something that I said in a blog helped them, and I decide that maybe it's not a completely selfish hobby. So thank you to those of you who have left such sweet comments for me--it means so much.

Since this wouldn't be half as fun without you, dear readers, I wanted to give out some door prizes at my party. As I am frugally minded and striving to set my house in order, I had to think outside of the box on what I could offer as a giveaway. (I am not one of those cool bloggers who has sponsors to donate giveaway items. How can I get hooked up with that?) Keep in mind that I am postally challenged and even as I write this, I can see a stack of cookbook CDs in padded envelopes that have yet to be mailed to the participants of my summer writing contest. (I'll get those out soon, girls, I promise!)

So, here are three things that I'm giving away.

One: a batch of my most favorite chocolate chip cookies, delivered to your door (by mail if you don't live in my own town.) This will require me to actually go to the post office on the same day I bake cookies, but I'm willing to do it because I love you--and because I need to go anyway and mail off these dadburned cookbook CDs.

Two: a copy of my cookbook CD, which I originally published to give to my family and friends last Christmas. If you already have one coming to you from the writing contest, you can opt out of this prize or give it away yourself.

Third: a copy of one of my favorite books (which has been made into one of my favorite movies) : The Princess Bride byWilliam Goldman. I'm going to warn you now that I'm ordering it online and it may be gently used. It will not detract from the enjoyment that you and your family will surely have while reading it. Just think of it as a recycled, green prize. I'm a big fan of used books as well as of The Princess Bride.

So, if you want to participate, just leave me a comment telling me which of these prizes you'd most like (or alternatively, you can tell me why you like to read my blog and I'll consider you for all three prizes. Because I like compliments:) You have until the end of day Tuesday, October 7th (11:59 pm PST). My kids will help me do a random drawing. I'll do my best to get your prizes mailed off sooner than later.

While you're here at my party, I wanted to introduce you to a friend of mine--another blog. My real-life friend, Christine, has started a blog that I really want you to check out. She already has one about cupcakes and one that offers free interior design, and her new blog is an (almost) daily scripture study response. If you're lucky enough to know her, you know that Christine really loves the scriptures and has a gift for teaching from them. She has taught early morning seminary (a weekday scripture study class for high school kids), adult Sunday School, Relief Society (for the women of our congregation), and also teaches a monthly class on the Book of Mormon for any of the women in our congregation who want to attend. Her classes are engaging and spiritual, and she always has great resources for quotes, wonderful stories, and analogies that help you really get it. I love reading this and don't feel guilty about spending a few minutes a day on this blog. So go check it out and leave her a comment so she won't be the lonely girl at the party!:)

Oh, and one last thing. The Guest Book. I added this new thingy to my sidebar called Followers. I think that it's an unfortunate name because no one really wants to be a follower--didn't our moms warn us against that? But I would love it if you just wanted to be a reader that Blogger called "follower"!:) It's easy to sign up if you have a blogger account. Then people can click on your picture and come and visit your blogs. So feel free to join the ranks. I promise only positive peer pressure will be involved.

There. We've gotten all of the business out of the way. Now I really wish you were here with me to have our little party. At least I can host a virtual party with my pajamas on and the house less than spic-and-span. And no clean-up afterwards!. We should really have these more often. Thanks for coming!


Nicolette said...

I love your parties, they are always the best. I can't wait to read your 300th, 500th and even 1000th post, because they are all so wonderful. You should never feel guilty about blogging because you are wonderful at it and touch so many with your posts. Thank you for sharing your feelings so openly with us. I can't wait to see what you blog about next.

Deborah said...

Thank you for your inspirational posts. Your idea for an exercise challenge has probably saved my life (at least extended it a little longer...) If I get randomly chosen I would like the cookies, but then that would mean I would have to exercise for an extra four or five hours so I should be smart and get the CD of recipes instead so that I could at least choose something with fewer calories. Thanks for all of the inspirational posts!

Rachel C. said...

Great party! All the prizes seem great! I've read that book and LOVE IT!!!!

Life At MandyLand said...

Your blog always either makes me laugh or keeps me on track... Thanks for always reminding us what a blessing our children are...Keep up the good work..Happy 200Th

Erika said...

Happy 200th!!!
Wish you were down here this weekend and we could celebrate together :-)

nickandstaci said...

Congrats on your 200th post! I love reading your blog. You always have great posts, plus some very yummy recipes to share. You are one of the reasons I started my very own blog. Thanks so much! If your adorable children pick me, which they should because I never win anything, I would love some cookies or the cookbook. Take Care!

Cornfields, children and waterballet said...


What a great party! Congrad's! I have been a loyal blog reader since the beginning. I have cried, laughed and wished I lived closer everytime I read your blog! Thanks!

I love it that you are giving away such fun gifts! If I were picked..any of those prizes sound wonderful. Entry me in all three! I can always give your CD cookbook to another friend because if I were to win that prize I would have two. A free gift for me to pass on! FUN!

Tamlynn said...

Woo Hoo! A party! I'll join for a chance at homemade cookies. Of the three items you are giving away, these would make me the happiest. I already have too many cookbooks that I don't even use and a copy of The Princess Bride -book and movie.

The cookies would make my entire family feel happy, warm and loved. How can you pass up an opportunity like that?

Prudy said...

Of course any prize would be wonderful, but the real prize is coming here to catch up on your life and be inspired. I never read without wishing that you lived next door. Congrats on your 200th post.

Prudy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Angela said...

Congrats on all of your posts! I want to win the dip! hat looks so good! I always love a party!

Becky said...

Congrats! I have to say I would love to come to one of your parties and I'm looking forward to your famous Halloween one.
I've bought that exact book online and loved it! I've also got one of your cookbooks (albeit in storage somewhere) so I'm requesting some HOT chocolate chip cookies!! My kids and I would adore that sometime this fall!

An Ordinary Mom said...

Congrats on your 200th post! What a great accomplishment.

And I feel the same way about blogging. There are days where I feel like it takes up too much time to be a good hobby, but then I think of the good it does for me and others and so I continue moving forward.

I would love chocolate chip cookies ... yum!

Why do I read your blog? Because I, too, am trying to relish motherhood, especially when I have an energetic and spirited three year old always snipping at my heels. Your blog helps encourage me to slow down and enjoy these moments, because they won't last forever. Thanks for all you do!

Jenny in Utah said...

Congratulations and thanks for having an inspiring blog - I first came just because of the title -you have totally lived up to it and you deserve a big party!

ps - I want your recipes!!! :)

scrap chair potato said...

Wow! 200 already? It seems like you just had your 100th.
I love your blog. It inspired me to make my husband, sisters, friends, and then finally me start blogging.

I wish I had half the writing talent you have. There are so many times that I wish I could just write a post about how I feel about something and not just what we did this week, but I just can't express myself the way great writers like you do. *Sigh*

It is so great to feel closer through our blogs. It is so fun to take a peek into your life through your blog. Your children and husband are lucky to have such a wonderful woman in their lives. :)

Melissa said...

Hi Michal,
Happy 200th. I love the layered dip! That is always a favorite.

Your blog is great and you know I get many ideas from you that I usually steal and use at my own blog! Thanks for that.

I would love to be in your contest. All three would be great, but I would like to say that the cookies would be great. Brady rants and raves about your cookies ever since he had them! Second, I love your cooking, so the cookbook would be great. Third, I am always looking for a new book to read.
Thanks and I look forward to reading many more of your blogs!

Jen H. said...


I love to read your blog! Although I can't believe you find the time to do it, it is totally time well spent. You are blessing many lives.

While I love your favorite chocolate chip cookies, I can (and do) make that recipe myself, thanks to your blog. So I would love to have your recipes CD.

Jen H.

Aubrey said...

Wow, 200! I love reading your posts. You always have great things to say.

And I keep meaning to tell you that I have loved the excercise challenge. And I would love the next challenge to keep the excercise and just add in something else--like prayer and scripture study.
Or, maybe a no sugar challenge? And speaking of sugar...
The cookie recipe you love is my go-to recipe. We call it Mrs. Field's cookies, although I have no idea if it is really Mrs. Field's recipe. But it's the about best cookie recipe I have ever found.

And I had forgotten about Princess Bride. I started reading it years ago, but never finished it--I have no idea why. I would love to read it through!

Happy Blogging!

Anonymous said...

This is really nice of you to throw a little party! Your writing skills are excellent so all the blog practice is working! Thanks for having the giveaway.

Anonymous said...

Happy 200th post! I love virtual parties--no mess, no cleanup...

Anyway, your cookies sound yummy, but I'd be happy to win whatever. I'm just so grateful that you do continue to blog. You really do inspire and help me relish motherhood. In fact, I thought of you during Pres. Monson was talking about enjoying the moment this morning. So, thanks!

Aimee said...

Hi - visiting your blog for the first time today. I want your recipes! Also, I noticed that Barefoot Books is on your favorite web-sites list...I just became a stallholder so I can sell from home! Love, love, love their books! Small world.

Nydia said...

Hello, Michal. I learned about your blog via Christine, she's on my blogroll and I'm constantly visiting her cool blog for ideas and suggestions.
I'd love to get your cooking cd (although your cookies look delicious...), but being a Brazilian resident, am I elegible for this contest? Please let me know!

Robin Neilson said...

Hello Michal!
I stumbled onto your blog while "blogstalking" some of the Whittier-ite kids! (Don't ask me to recount HOW I got here because I have to make my way through several other blogs to do it!) Not bad for a a bonafide computer dummy, eh?
I have enjoyed reading about your comings and goings and, even though we didn't get to visit in person while I was there in July, I almost feel like we've caught up a little on at least YOUR doings in the last little while!
I would add myself onto your list of followers (i.e. blogstalkers) if I had enought computer savvy to figure out how! :(
Meanwhile.....IF I were to be randomly chosen in your drawing I would LOVE to have a copy of your cookbook CD!!! oooh.....I can almost taste victory!! lol

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to let you know that I agree with all the women who have already commented. Your blog is a bright spot in the day for me. I love it and I am so pleased with your efforts in so many areas.

As for the contest...I can't have the cookies because you wouldn't give them to me (thanx), I have the CD and I could borrow the book I'm sure.

So just know that I am so glad you are my daughter (in-law just so people don't get confused.) I love you! Keep blogging


Keli and Mike said...

Your thoughts have lifted my spirits many times when I've felt discouraged. Your testimony is a gentle reminder that I am a child of God and that I am loved. You're doing a great job! I think I would benefit the most from your cookbook. I'm in desperate need of some new recipes!

Leslie said...

I am a silent participant of your blog, but thought I'd leave a comment today.
I always check in to see what you and your cute little family are doing. Your children are so cute, and I love little Bronwen's name. I love reading your book lists, and thought your cookies looked delicious.
You are doing great things with your children, and really are thoroughly Relishing Motherhood.

Allison said...

Congratulations on your 200th post!

Jennifer said...

I'd love your recipes. You are a great writer, and I love that you express your real opinions, especially those on marriage and family.

Andrea said...

Wow 200! That is impressive. I love coming to see how you and your family are doing. I also have to say that the fitness challenge has been AWESOME! I tell everyone about it! I know I need to update for last week , but it has really helped me.

I would love the cookbook. Since, I missed sending my toughts for the last one I have been trying to think of ways that I could still get one. This would be perfect!

My Ice Cream Diary said...

Ha ha ha. Talk about postally challenged, I was just getting online to find your address so I could FINALLY mail you your pay it forward gift.

Now that photo of your cookies has me drooling and I must go bake some (I love your recipe). I think I'm already getting a CD so I will try for the book, please (And cookies are very welcome too. Yum!)

Anonymous said...

As my daughter-in-law I am so proud of the fact you have a blog that is called "Relishing Motherhood". Not only is it an inspiration to the people who read it but it is so well writen.Keep up the great work!


Sonja said...

I LOVE your blog and I am so bummed that I missed your party (and giveaway!). BUT, I want to tell you why I like your blog so much anyway. :)

You are an incredible mom! I come here and find inspiration. I come away smiling, either because your kids are so darn cute or your writing is witty or because I just like to see how many things we have in common--so please don't feel like you are wasting your time.

You are a gifted writer! It is so refreshing to read something thoughtful and well written.

You are real. I appreciate the times that you mention challenges or struggles, because it helps me to know that I am not alone.

Also, (I hope this makes sense) I feel a strength of motherhood here. You know, I feel like we are part of an army of moms who are defending what is descent, good, moral, and just in this world. You are a rallying captain and I feel your strength. (please forgive the overused metaphor--but it's true)

And I also must mention, that you are SO KIND in your comments to my blog and I appreciate them SO much. :)

Happy 200th post and here's to many, many more read by your adoring followers. Cheers!