As we begin a new year with hope and promise, I’m taking a look back at Debbees Buzz most popular posts of 2020.
We were blessed to have our two adult sons home for Christmas. They drove in together with youngest son’s four-month old puppy.
Under the circumstances, we had a fairly traditional Christmas. That is if you don’t count COVID-19 tests, online shopping and curbside pickup only, N95 masks, and curtailing all unnecessary trips or exposure. The worst was not going to Christmas Eve Mass. Instead, we watched our bishop in a near empty cathedral via live-streaming.
But, there was the joy and chaos of having a rambunctious puppy in the house. On Christmas Eve, we cooked together, played games, visited with extended family via FaceTime, and made merry. A highlight was my son play holiday music on the piano. And, by the time we went to bed, snow was falling and blanketing the ground. It created a truly magical setting.
We awoke to a winter wonderland, with Pittsburgh having a record-breaking snowfall. There were thoughtful, clever and generous gifts for all. Most importantly, the four of us were together.
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Year Like No Other
During my third year of blogging — the majority during the pandemic — I published a total of 42 different blog posts across a variety of topics and categories.
Many posts were related to a holiday, season or occasion. Although post categories frequently overlapped, features were about evenly spread between crafting, table setting and travel. There were fewer about parties, home decor and family/history.
Today, I’m highlighting those that were the most popular posts. I inferred what were reader favorites based on the number of visitors to those pages, comments, pins on Pinterest, and posts selected by fellow bloggers to feature on their sites.
Perhaps you are a new subscriber to Debbees Buzz or a follower who missed several posts? I’m hoping this 2020 roundup will point you to past topics of interest. And, I’d love if you’d comment and share which were your own personal favorites.
Table Settings Always Popular Posts
Of the 12 table settings published last year, Downhill Dinner at Ski Cabin Table generated the most comments in 2020.
Since it was one of the few in that category not part of the Tablescape Hop, that surprised me. That’s because the hop generates a noticeable spike in visitors and comments by both readers and bloggers alike. January is also usually a slower time of year on the blog.
Sweet Rustic Rabbit Easter Table appears to be the most popular in the monthly blog hop. That seems appropriate as the post featured a rabbit sculpture leaping in the centerpiece, lol!
Another spring theme table, Tweet Turquoise Early Spring Table, was a close second. It featured a unique napkin fold I created; Pretty Flower Napkin Fold Tutorial.
What table was your favorite this past year?
Napkin Folds Embellish Tables
Incorporating napkin folds into styling a table was a technique I used many times over the past two years.
By far the most popular napkin fold was the evergreen or Christmas tree shape in, Enchanting Winter Woodland Tablescape. See over a dozen other Napkin Folds for All Seasons, Holidays & Occasions.
During 2020, I tried four new napkin folds. How about you?
Another was called a “ragdoll,” which I adapted for another of the year’s most popular posts; Halloween Gothic Glam Table & Skeleton Napkin Fold.
Probably one of my all-time favorite centerpieces, was Stella “bathing” in an elaborate silver punch bowl. See more of her antics in Silly Skeleton Poses on Elegant Halloween Table.
Popular Craft Projects
Also decorating that same table was one of the fall season’s favorite crafts; DIY Eerie, Elegant Black Pumpkin Decor.
People seemed to really enjoy the campy fun. All four Halloween-related tables and crafts were among the year’s most popular posts.
Featured five times on blog linkup parties was the DIY Sunken Shipwreck Pirate Wreath.
I made the wreath to decorate Sistah B’s front door for Halloween. But, I think it also has broader appeal as a theme birthday or summer party decoration?
Crafts as Gifts
It was one of two wreaths made as gifts for family members. Another was a housewarming gift for my son’s “new” 100-year old row house in Philadelphia’s historic center city. Widely featured (five times), was the Wine Cork Wreath DIY Tutorial that now hangs above his bar.
Since late August, pictures from the post have already been pinned to Pinterest over 2,100 times! It’s surprising that a post just four months old has already generated so much activity. Especially since it’s not a holiday related craft.
Since I already have so many handmade seasonal and holiday decorations, I turned to crafting projects as gifts. Most recent was the Adorable Crochet Zebra Makes Sweet Homemade Gift.
Zoe the zebra was the first time I had crocheted in over 40 years! While being cooped up so much at home — and wanting to reach out to family and friends — I took on a number of new types of arts and craft projects.
One good thing that came out of the last year, was the opportunity to try new things as I shared in, DIY Arts & Craft Project Ideas & Inspiration.
For me, that also meant painting on canvas — something I’ve wanted to return to since middle school! First, was an acrylic painting of my Sweet Scottie Dog.
Over this past year, I shared 10 different projects and participated in six monthly craft hops. Most included tutorials with step-by-step instructions and photos.
Projects ran the gambit from a Wear a Homemade Mask, to DIY Photo Graduation Party Decorations & Mementos, to Painting Thanksgiving Turkey Glasses as Table Favors.
Longing to Party Again Posts
Like napkin folding, I love painting theme specific glasses to enhance a table setting or give as party favors. Twenty-twenty was an awful year in so many ways, but particularly the isolation from family and friends — and inability to gather together.
It wasn’t the best time to share, Host an Extraordinary Favorite Things Party (Part 2). But, by late June, we were all hopeful of a summer reprieve to allow safe gatherings for picnics, birthday parties, baby and bridal showers, and weddings.
How to Host a My Favorite Things Party (Part I) is one of the most pinned (over 4,700 times and counting) and popular posts in my three years of blogging. It’s what I think of as “evergreen” content, along with any of the four theme parties I’ve hosted.
I suspect that’s why Alice in Wonderland theme party and craft posts continue to be popular posts with readers. The first Wonderland Table and Party Favors post alone has generated nearly 9,000 pins!
It’s a theme that could be easily adapted for a child’s birthday, baby or bridal shower, or tea party.
Last year, I shared Alfresco Alice in Wonderland Unbirthday Party Tables, along with two related craft popular posts. See both a Fun to Fabulous Floral Fascinator, and Vintage Teacup Garden, Home & Party Decor.
Another well-loved and enduring party theme is Peter Rabbit. Which probably explains the popularity of Peter Rabbit & Friends Beatrix Potter Figurine Collection.
With the vaccine, I hope and pray we’ll be able to return to safe and happy gatherings once again.
Most Featured Post of 2020
Thanksgiving Table Setting: When Three’s a Charm was an opportunity for me to hold onto and cherish precious memories of 2019’s large family holiday celebration.
One in which my elderly mother traveled from Charleston, SC to be with us. A related Thanksgiving project tutorial was likely the most popular post of 2020.
Hands down, the post most featured by other bloggers was, Cornucopia Takes Center Stage on Thanksgiving Table. It was featured on eight different weekly linkup parties — likely a record for any Debbees Buzz post ever! And, it was also the most pinned 2020 since being published three months ago .
Despite the toxic and divisive politics and election this year, I chose to honor everyday heroes that have served our country to preserve the freedoms we cherish.
Celebrating Patriots on Independence Day told the story of my husband’s ancestor, Peacock, a Pennsylvania militia officer during the Revolutionary War. He’s the reason for my passion for peacocks!
Labeled by the British as The Rebel Bird, Peacock (his real first name) was a spy and courier for General Washington. He was a first hand witness and participant at both Valley Forge and Yorktown. Because of the post, another of Peacock’s descendants contacted me.
Later, I shared my father-in-law’s inspiring and heart-wrenching story in A Salute to a WWII POW Veteran.
Those two posts were probably my personal favorites of 2020.
Beyond missing everyday joys and a sense of normal, hubby and I long to travel and explore the world together. Our bucket list trip for last June to Ireland to trace ancestral roots was obviously canceled. Because we are over 60, I’m not particularly hopeful we will be able to travel abroad in 2021 either.
I’m particularly grateful that we were able to travel last February for a weeklong ski trip with our eldest son and his girl. Before the pandemic shutdown the world, I shared our experiences in Terrific Telluride, Colorado Ski Vacation and Charming Old Telluride Mining Town in Winter.
During the last year, I spent considerable time trying to catch up on all my travel photography. And, wanting a virtual escape, I shared travel experiences from trips to Greece and South America.
One of our favorite ports of call was breathtaking Santorini, Greece: Gem of the Aegean. In that post and Small Ship Cruise: Visiting Patmos, Greece I also shared our experience with a rare Mediterranean hurricane.
Across three popular posts, I also shared the incredible and life-affirming adventure hubby and I had on a Galapagos Islands Cruise in Nature’s Wonderland. That included daily snorkeling excursions where we swam with penguins, sea lions, turtles, rays and even sharks — oh my!
Over five days we got to visit a part of the world left mostly as God had created it. Revisiting those pictures and memories in Galapagos Vacation Adventure and Sea Lion Colony Encounter has helped to sustain me during these difficult times.
Hope for Year Ahead
I entered the New Year wearing a shoe (although limited to a sneaker due to swelling), with no need of a cane or walker. Physical therapy will continue just once a week until the end of January, as soft tissues continue to heal and strengthen.
I’m not so sure about my blogging schedule or topics for the next couple of months, as I continue PT and resuming normal activities around the home. Every thing takes twice as much time, and my ankle and foot tend to swell and hurt if I overdo. My next great adventure is going to the grocery store!
As my regular readers know, I also am Preparing for a Puppy to bring home in early February. He was actually born on the anniversary of my beloved Fibber MacGee’s passing in 2019. How sweet is that? I’m taking that as a positive sign that he was well worth the long wait. I hope you won’t mind the likely deluge of puppy photos and update to come in 2021!
I regularly participate in: Metamorphous Monday, Turn About Tuesday, Centerpiece Wednesday, Whimsical Home Projects, In Link Party, Share Your Style, Tablescape Thursday, Thursday Favorite Things, Crafty Creators, Fabulous Friday, Saturday Sparks, Happiness is Homemade, and Love Your Creativity.
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It isn’t surprising at all to me that your creativity got viewed and pinned so many times; you are beyond talented with artistry and imagination! Wish I was half as talented. So fun seeing again all your great ideas. Hugs, my friend,
Bobbi, the best part of blogging has been the opportunity to meet, get to know, and interact with wonderful women like you. Thank you for being such a kind and supportive friend.
OH that napkin shaped like a tree is fabulous! But I am very partial to your travel posts.
So easy to fold too! Always appreciate you traveling along with me and features throughout the year Joanne. Let’s hope those trips can be more than virtual soon.
Debbee, such joy to look back and see these fabulous posts. You are so talented and I love your creativity. Beautiful tables, decor and more. Cheers to a bright new year.
Linda, you oh-so-kind and generous comment made my day! Although 2021, with Jan 6’s devastating capital attack, started off horribly, I’m praying for better days ahead.