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Kalyn's Kitchen

Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns 14 Years Old (and Kalyn Examines Her Bucket List!)

Another year has gone screaming by, and today my blog is turning 14 years old! I know, I can’t believe it either. Thanks to my faithful readers and followers for making this 14-year blogging journey so enjoyable. I’m grateful every day for the people who visit here and the many ways that blogging has enriched my life!

Kalyn's Kitchen Turns 14 Years Old

Every year when the anniversary date for Kalyn’s Kitchen comes around, I sit down at the computer and write a light-hearted little post about how I never dreamed of the many ways that starting this blog would end up changing my life. And of course that’s still true today when Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns 14 Years Old! Definitely I’m grateful for accidentally discovering what ended up being the best retirement job ever!

But this year I’m going to take a more serious tone and talk to you about the many hours of work I put in daily on the blog, something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately. I never imagined that having a blog would be a 14 year journey of CHANGE, and how much work it would be to keep up with those changes. Of course, the biggest change for Kalyn’s Kitchen came in September 2017 when I switched Kalyn’s Kitchen to WordPress. After that happened I realized every post on the blog would need to be edited, something I talked about in Thirteen Ways Food Blogging Has Changed for last year’s birthday post.

Making that switch to WordPress was something I should have done ten years sooner, and I’ve paid the price for being stubborn because since then so much of my time has been consumed with the tedious work of editing every single post to switch to the Recipe Plug-In formatting that’s preferred by Google. (That’s what puts the nice box around the recipe and gives you a print button with the thumbnail photo on the printer page.) If I hadn’t been working on adding that formatting for over 18 months you wouldn’t find many of my recipes when you search in Google, so it has to be done. And there’s no doubt the WordPress site is great, and far more functional than my old site, so no regrets about the switch.

But maintaining a successful blog is time consuming, even without the added pressure of spending time every day to edit old content. I don’t mean to complain, because I love the work of creating new recipes and sharing them with you. And updating old favorites with new photos is also deeply satisfying. I’m always focused on doing everything I can to make Kalyn’s Kitchen as good as it can possibly be for the people who enjoy the recipes you find here, and working on this blog is rewarding for me in so many ways. But dear readers, there are only so many hours in a day!

Last year I had a very milestone birthday, and I’m well past the age when most people are retired. And even though I have no interest in retiring for many, many years to come (and don’t plan on shutting down the site ever) lately I’m realizing that I don’t want to spend the rest of my life sitting in front of the computer for hours and hours every day.

Thankfully I’m about 80% done with the needed edits for WordPress. But after that’s finished I want to add nutritional information to the recipes, something I’ve been promising I’d do after all the recipes have the Recipe Plug-In formatting in place. When the edits are finally done, I’ll tackle the process of switching to a newer Recipe Plug-In that will calculate nutritional information.

Meanwhile I want to say THANKS to everyone who has been understanding about the delay in providing nutritional information, and especially to the kind people who calculate it themselves and then share that information in a comment! I appreciate people who accept that I can’t just snap my fingers and have that  done on 2,000+ recipes, no matter how much I would like to have it for you!

And this behind the scenes peek into my blogging workload is a long way of explaining that I’ve decided to celebrate my 14 year blogging anniversary by easing up a little on the (self-imposed) pressure on myself. I can’t keep up the pace of editing and keep up with all the other work of blogging and the posting schedule that’s become the norm for my blog. I need more time off to work on my bucket list!

I want to read more books, go to more movies, take more walks, and have more dinners with friends and family! But most of all I want to go on more trips, without having to spend days preparing posts ahead and time working on the blog every day while I’m traveling. So there are going to be some small but important changes around here. Freeing up more time for fun in my life means new recipes might show up here a bit less frequently. Some weeks there may not be quite as many posts as usual. And occasionally I might even go on a trip and take a whole week off from the blog (GASP!)

Of course my wise brother Rand reminds me regularly that no one notices the schedule and lots of other things on the blog the way I do, so hopefully my slightly more relaxed approach might not even be noticeable to the readers. I’ll certainly do my best to keep the site updated often enough that you won’t ever feel there’s a lack of recipes! And to everyone who’s read to the end in this post that doesn’t even have a recipe, let me say THANK YOU again for your support! I never would have stuck with it anywhere close to this long without the amazing support I’ve gotten from readers and that means the world to me!

Kalyn’s Kitchen Birthdays Through the Years:

Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns One
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Two
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Three
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Four
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Five
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Six
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Seven
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Eight
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Nine
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Ten (!)
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Eleven (!!)
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Twelve (!!!)
Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns Thirteen (!!!!)

 

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76 comments on “Kalyn’s Kitchen Turns 14 Years Old (and Kalyn Examines Her Bucket List!)”

  1. Congrats. Some of your recipes are my favorites and in my regular rotation. (which is saying a lot, since I often forget and just make new things!)

  2.  Congratulation on 14 years of blogging Kalyn.  I know how much work it is and that’s why I haven’t kept mine up in years now. I’ve referred many people to your blogs over the years; they’re so professional and beautiful. It was also wonderful to meet you in person. I hope your travel plans bring you to San Francisco sometime so I can see you again. Happy birthday blog!

  3. Congrats, Kalyn! Your 14 years of blogging has been amazing! As you know, I love and share your recipes all the time because they show folks that gluten-free living can be all about real food with no special ingredients (or only occasional special ingredients, like almond flour) are needed. When they “get” that, they can thrive vs being unhappy with living gluten free.

    I’m so very happy that you’ll be focusing more and more on the things that mean the most to you. Life is definitely not meant to be lived in front of a computer. Enjoy every second of your traveling, spending time with friends, and relaxing/breathing without thinking about your blog 24/7.

    Hugs,
    Shirley

  4. I wish I had a count of how many of your recipes I have made over the years. And some, over and over! Your website is my “go to” always. Even if you add only a few recipes a month, there are so many I still want to try. Enjoy your time and know that your efforts here are so appreciated by someone who enjoys cooking but loves the great advice and instructions. Thanks, Diana

  5. Happy 14th!! Enjoy life…it flies by quick enough as it is. Thank you for your hard work and dedication!! I have found many new favorite recipes on your site. And for me and others there are 14 yrs of recipes we can go back thru and find “new” and more favorites. Smell the roses and check off things on your bucket list…you certainly deserve it!
    Thanks for the recipes, Suzanne

  6. Thanks for all of the years of hard work, Kalyn. You were my inspiration when I began blogging, and I’m retiring from it – more so than you are. Most people have no idea how much work goes on behind the scenes to get recipes, the writing, the photography to come up and look so lovely. And you have more than one blog, for goodness’ sake! Congrats on the anniversary, Kalyn.

  7. Kalyn thank you for all your years of hard work. 
    I have been with you from the beginning. Take time off for yourself. You deserve it. 

  8. Congratulations! Can’t believe you’ve reached this milestone. I remember when I started blogging, too, yours was one of the first good ones I looked up to. Your online presence has been inspiring and helpful to many. Thanks for all your hard work. And now, it’s time for you to ease up a bit and go enjoy the things you’ve wanted to do but didn’t have time for. Best of luck always!

  9. Congratulations on 14 years! What an accomplishment! And I agree with your brother (and everyone else!) that whenever you put something out is just fine and certainly doesn’t have to be on a schedule!
    I still wish you would publish a cookbook! I’d be first in line to buy it!

    • Hi Cindy, thanks for the vote of confidence! But writing a cookbook takes months and months of work and that’s just not something I think I want to do at this point in my life. Never say never of course. But none of the offers I’ve gotten seemed worth the time it would require.

  10. Congratulations on 14 years. I’ve loved and followed your blog from the beginning when South Beach Diet changed me and my eating habits forever. Thanks for all you do. Take time to do more for you. Travel, read, enjoy–it will nourish you and your work.

  11. YOU ROCK KALYN!!!! Happy Blog Birthday!!!! 

  12. Kalyn–right on! Happy Blogaversary!

  13. Thank you for all you have done and whatever you decide to continue to do. I have found so many wonderful recipes on your site.

    I agree with your brother though….. I am an avid recipe junky and spend most of my free time perusing the internet and my favorite Low Carb and Keto websites looking for recipes. I can honestly say that I receive recipe emails (blogs) from about 20 different sites and I pay no attention to how frequently they come in. I just look at the recipe and if I’m interested I read and save to Copy Me That or I delete and go about my business.

    Take the time to do all those fun things on your bucket list – even if you never did another blog or posted another new recipe you have created a treasure chest for anyone eating this way!

  14. Congratulations on your 14 yr. anniversary! I’m sure it is a lot more work than we as readers realize. I don’t know how long I’ve been reading and making the recipes you publish, but I’ve enjoyed them from the start. I was diagnosed with Celiac disease 13 years ago and really appreciate the GF recipes you publish. Many of them have become my favorites.
    I do hope that you let up on your self-imposed pressure to get everything done. Take time to pursue your bucket list endeavors.

  15. Thank you for all of your experimenting and hard work to provide us with such excellent recipes (I know I’ve saved many of them and have a couple of very special favorites!) over the years. I’m happy to hear that you’re going to be taking more time to enjoy life while you still provide us with the blog posts and recipes that we so enjoy.

  16. Congratulations! You have a wonderful blog – but don’t let life pass you by!! Get out and live it! You’ve already given us so much to enjoy, do not for a minute feel guilty about time away from your blog. xo

  17. Congratulations on 14 years of successful Blogging! Love your recipes & chat! You need that time taken to balance your creative juices. Enjoy that time & I still look forward to any posting you have!

  18. Kalyn, Happy 14 Blogaversary!! Your blog was one of the first that I started reading, and one of my first social media friends, when I started my own blog writing in 2008, “ La Vita E Bella, Life is Beautiful” . 

    Thoroughly enjoy the tastes of all your recipes, especially the zucchini ones. 
    Now focusing on Low carb meals. 
    I’m not familiar with “ plug-in’s” on my WordPress site, and may be why there’s less visits to my blog posts. 
    Enjoy time out with your family & friends, since there’s many old favorite blog posts to read and cook with! 🙂 

    • Hi Gracie,
      Plug-Ins are the behind-the-scenes coding in WordPress that put the recipe into a certain format. Maybe you are on WordPress.com; not sure if you can use plug-ins with blogs that aren’t self-hosted. But I don’t know much, maybe look into it.

      Thanks for the nice thoughts about my site! Glad you have enjoyed it.

  19. I appreciate and use a lot of your recipes and agree you deserve a break. I will not notice and probably discover new favorites in old recipes. Enjoy!

  20. Kalyn-
    Thank you so much for your wonderful blog! I take your Tarragon Mustard deviled eggs to church and they are always a hit! After being employed full-time for 33 years, I finally have time to do some cooking. I never thought to simply cook down a sauce that had gotten thin from cooking meat–wow- new technique to me that I use all of the time :-). It is good that you are taking more time to have fun–time is all that any of us have! I have you have grand adventures on your trips–and that you can find time to share those adventures with us! Many thanks again!

  21. Happy🎉Birthday Kalyn AND Kaylyn’s Kitchen! Your recipes are here for us to enjoy whenever you feel ‘The Bucket List’ calling! Just don’t forget to come back and share your times with us! It will make me happy to read you are celebrating YOU! You surely always bring enjoyment to me!
    -Jean ❤

  22. Congratulations, Kalyn! Your blog is amazing. It is my go-to site for recipes, especially low carb. BUT, you need to also take care of yourself. I don’t think people really understand just how much time and energy is involved in this creative process. You deserve the more relaxed approach to your blog, and, quite frankly, I don’t think it will affect its quality in the least. Thanks for all of the great recipes and information up until now; looking forward to the same in the future, even if it is on a different schedule.

  23. Congratulations, Kalyn! Taking care of yourself is the most important thing you could do!

  24. Congratulations, Kalyn! You did an amazing job with your blog! Cheers to many, many more years!

  25. Congratulations Kalyn!! Maintaining and keeping up with all the social media and ever changing technical aspects of blogging requires so much time and effort. I applaud you for doing this for so long without ever compromising quality. Your blog was one of the first I followed when i started my own blog. I am glad to hear you are taking some time to travel and do things on your bucket list. I look forward to hearing about your travels and continuing to follow your resourceful blog!

  26. Dear Kalyn, Happy Birthday to your blog. Thanks for all your wonderful recipes. Low carb was a struggle until I found your blog.  I discovered great, easy and tasted awesome food.  My family didn’t even notice the difference and my sweetie lost 15 pounds and has kept it off. Enjoy your family time, more reading and travel. Blessings and thank you ever so much!

  27. So glad you and your blog have been around for so long!

  28. I’ve watched so proudly as you grew and grew and my fridge is full of calendars – all in a row! You are a great role model of Blogger entrepreneurship with heart. Many good wishes and congratulations!

  29. I feel like I could have written this post too. While my friends are retired and going on trips I’m still working pretty hard on this blog. And for a lot of the same things you are, maintenance issues because of our true boss, Mister Google.

    I think we feel an obligation most often to our readers that they don’t expect of us. So it’s really in our head and we have to say, ‘You know what, I’m not that important, I’ll be gone for a week and they’ll barely miss me.’ 🙂

    Here’s to more trips and adventures!

  30. I love your site and all you do. You caught me years ago with the Cafe Rio Salad dressing and I’ve been a fan ever since. Enjoy your time more and your readers will understand. Congratulations!

  31. Congratulations!! Keep doing what you’re doing – it’s the best! Here’s to 114 more!

  32. Happy blogiversary! I fully support your decision to give yourself the freedom to blog OFF schedule! 🙂

  33. Happy birthday Kalyn’s Kitchen! Your blog and recipes have transformed my cooking. I am far more willing to experiment myself because of your explanations of your process. I’ve never had a bad experience with your recipes. I use your blog almost every day, but rarely comment. Taking today to let you know how much I appreciate your hard work. I hope you share your travels.

  34. Kalyn, thank you for all of your hard work.  I have used your recipes more than any other website and they are all fantastic.  Your recipes have been instrumental in helping my husband control his blood sugar.  they taste great and we never feel like we are missing out.  I must say that I was shocked the first time I found out that you are of retirement age, you come across as so youthful in your posts!

  35. Congratulations and thank you so very much—I have enjoyed your recipes for years and consider many of them my favorites. I think your new schedule of time for yourself to enjoy life, see the world, and spend time with family and friends sounds like a perfect idea—and well deserved. There are so many recipes we can enjoy without the need for a new recipe or even a reminder to be posted. Thank you again for the wonderful site and all you do!

  36. Congratulations on 14 fabulous years!

  37. As someone who can relate to still working past normal retirement age-I admire your diligence.  You have plugged along with constant improvements and seemingly enjoy what you’re doing. Congrats to you and your blog and I’m proud to call you a friend now for over 50 years!  

  38. Congratulations, Kalyn!  it is beyond impressive to keep blogging for so long and with such high quality of posts… I am now wondering if not having that plug-in by wordpress explains the decline in page view in my blog.  Maybe google just does not like not having that???  I am not even sure how to install it, and if it goes with worpress.com blogs… or maybe just for wordpress.org???

    • Thanks Sally! I appreciate your support through the years. One reason I had to switch to WordPress was because my Google Search Traffic was down to practically nothing, so yes, I would say having the plug-in is essential. I don’t know if you can only use Plug-Ins on self-hosted sites. Wish I could help you with that!

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