By K.J. Cardinal
It's once again that time of year to look back on the year that was on The Cardinal Blog. I know we still have over a week until 2009, but with my trip to Hawaii on the horizon, I want to be sure to get this out there before the New Year is upon us.
Year two of The Cardinal Blog really saw things hit a new high on many levels:
• For starters there were over 160 posts in 2008, compared to just 39 in 2007.
• Videos became the rave for 2008 as 46 were posted, compared to just 11 in 2007.
• The Cardinal Vault feature debuted on January 1, 2008 and has been a runaway success.
• Tiffany got the "blog bug" as she has turned into a regular contributor...and a good one at that.
• TCB Followers were introduced and currently number five.
So, as you can see it was a busy year right here and people took notice. While 2007 brought about 2,000 hits to the blog, 2008 had more than an impressive 15,000 hits. I know that probably 11,000 of these are from Meme and Gail refreshing frantically to get the latest updates on their grandkids, but it's still 15,000 hits nonetheless.
Here are some more numbers to show the Best of the Cardinal Blog: 2008.
The Top-5 Most Viewed Videos 0f 2008
1. 2008 NBA Finals Game 1 (6,776 views)
2. Chubby Wubby (1,427)
3. Mom Attacks Anna (287)
4. Anna Sings Out (215)
5. Motorboard (167)
The NBA Finals Game 1 video was obviously a big hit for youtube viewers and was also the second-best sporting highlight of my life...only being trumped by the title-clinching game 6 that I also went to in 2008. The Chubby Wubby had a ton of hits and that has a lot to do with the power of Katie's facebook page. She posted the link there and tons of Katie's friends watched the video.
The Cardinal Blog's Most Commented Posts of 2008
1. Two years and she has yet to change the locks (5 comments)
2. KJ wins inaugural NYE decathlon (5)
3. Many more tied with 4 comments
Even though "Two years and she has yet to change the locks" had the same number of comments as "KJ wins inaugural NYE decathlon", I had to give the top spot to "Two years..." because most of the "NYE Decathlon" comments were in regards to the rummy ruling that took place that day. Which reminds me, Gail, Jenny, Jamie and Angie...you're all still wrong.
Looking back on 2008
The year in itself had many "bloggable" moments for the Cardinal family, most naturally-occurring, but a few were "man made". Whether relating to kids, sports, travel or business, 2008 was action packed. Pack Network took off in 2008, leaving the blog in shambles at times, but I recovered nicely after each lull as the low-water mark for number of posts in a month was eight (July).
The summer is my slow time for work, so it goes to show you that I apparently have so much fun in the "off-season" that I often neglect the blog. We also see my family more in the summer, so I don't feel the need to blog as much to keep Meme in the loop with what's going on because we are seeing her so much.
My personal blog favorites of 2008
Favorite Post: Happy half-birthday Anna
Favorite Video: Chubby Wubby
Favorite Photo: Anna (9/11/08)
Favorite Comment: Katie's comment on "The birds"
I think "Happy half-birthday Anna" is my favorite post of the year because it's just very heartfelt and truthful. I still have the same exact feelings today that I had the day that I wrote it...Anna, you're the best thing ever. There were tons of cute videos of Anna in 2008, but the Chubby Wubby video of Katie is hysterical. I challenge you all to try to watch it right now and not laugh out loud...it can't be done. My favorite photo never actually appeared in a post, but rather was a "Photo of the Week" entry. Katie's comment on "The birds" post about my dad and his love for music is so true and couldn't be put any better. Thanks for writing that Kater, but more importantly, thanks Dad for making us all feel that way.
Looking ahead at 2009
The Cardinal Blog obviously made many leaps and bounds in 2008 and it will be hard to trump in 2009, but I'll do my best. When I go to Hawaii on Dec. 27, I will be attempting to debut live video streaming through the blog I have set up for the trip (www.SurfwithMurph.com). If all goes well there, then I could easily see some live video streaming come to The Cardinal Blog in 2009. I also posted one voicemail message in 2008 and hopefully I can do more of those in 2009.
Let me know if you have any ideas of how I can make the blog better. I know "content is king", so posting more frequently would obviously be the best thing, but new cool features are always fun too.
Lastly, I have to give a special thanks to my family for being the inspiration of this blog. I know this blog can often seem like a big love affair between all of us, but that's because our real lives are that way. My family is the greatest in the world and the best part of that is that we all know it and all appreciate it. Being a father for over a year now has made family become even more important to me and I'm so proud to be able to share my entire family with everyone through this blog.
Best wishes to a happy and healthy 2009. Blog on!
Please feel free to comment on your favorite Cardinal Blog moments from 2008 by clicking on the comments link below.