Tuesday, July 19, 2011

My 7 Links: A Look Back at Arrows Sent Forth

It's perfect timing that My 7 Links is all the rage right now among travel bloggers, since this is the 1-year anniversary of Arrows Sent Forth. My 7 Links is a project organized by Tripbase that is designed to "create a bank of blog posts that deserve to see the light of day again." I've really enjoyed reading what other bloggers have shared on their blogs for the last week or so. Below are the particular categories that participants must follow. Thanks to Wandering Off (one of my absolute favorite blogs), who nominated me to participate.

My Most Beautiful Post:
"Togetherness" from September 30, 2010. I barely wrote a complete sentence for this post, because I think the picture speaks for itself. I could stare at this photo, of the two people I love most in the world doing what I most love to do, all day long. The photo was taken on the beach of Warren Dunes State Park in southwest Michigan at sunset.

My Most Popular Post:
Visiting the Florida Aquarium from April 3, 2011. Apparently lots of people are looking for info on this great destination in Tampa, Florida. I'm glad it's so popular, because I think the post full of great tips for a more successful visit to the aquarium.

My Most Controversial Post:
Going Places Strollers Never Will from October 3, 2010. I don't write controversial posts (or at least I haven't yet). But I did participate in a link-up to shed light on the many benefits of baby-wearing at a time when some were calling for the ban of all baby carriers and slings. While the arrow has graduated from baby-wearing these days, I'm still a huge fan of quality products that make family travel so much easier. And I'll be back to baby-wearing in just a few months!

My niece is now the queen of the backpack carrier.
My Most Helpful Post:
Things I Learned While Camping with a Toddler from September 28, 2010. While I see young kids all over campgrounds, I have found limited resources on the internet and around the blogosphere from families with first-hand knowledge of camping as a family. While I'm certainly no expert, I hope the tips I shared in this post will make another family's trip easier (or perhaps even motivate a hesitant parent to get out there for the first time for a night under the stars!)

A Post Whose Success Surprised Me:
Experiencing Egypt at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis from February 7, 2011. This is my second most popular post. Perhaps it got a lot of attention because I posted it so soon after the chaos began in Egypt. But I'm still surprised, because of all the amazing exhibits at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis, this is one that I don't often hear visitors talking about. In fact, on the day we visited, it was nearly empty. I think a lot of families pass it by. Maybe by sharing the fun we had, that will change for a few people.

A Post I Feel Didn't Get the Attention It Deserved:
Falls of the Ohio State Park from March 16, 2011. Maybe I did a lousy job of describing how unique and beautiful this place is. Maybe my pictures didn't do it justice. But this state park in southern Indiana really is amazing, and I didn't get much of a response to this post. (I have a theory that if these fossil beds were found along the coasts, it would be an incredibly popular tourist attraction. But don't get me started on how Midwestern gems like this often get ignored... Instead, I'll just to choose to celebrate getting to enjoy places like this in peace and quiet.)

The Post I'm Most Proud Of:
Trip Report: South Haven, Michigan from July 19, 2010. I don't even suggest you click over to this post unless you're planning a trip to South Haven. There's really nothing special about it, other than it marks the moment that I finally started this blog after kicking around the idea of doing so for several months. I wasn't sure I wanted to put myself out there on the web, sharing my thoughts, ideas, pictures and memories. But blogging has been such a fun adventure for me: it has lead to a part-time job with Visit Indiana, an almost-free trip to Boston, and even affects how I cook in my kitchen. (Let's not discuss it's affect on the cleanliness of my house, however.) It all started with this very first post.

Hope you enjoyed this look back. Now it's my turn to nominate five of my favorite bloggers to join in the fun. (Ladies, this is sort of like a chain letter, so feel free to ignore if you're not interested or have already been nominated.)

Midwest Guest
Amy's Food Flights
Suitcases and Sippy Cups
Go Big or Go Home
Go Explore Nature