Monday, May 7, 2018

From Auto Train to Zoo - A Reflection #AtoZChallenge

If you are looking for my Monday #MusicMovesMe post, click here.

Another April gone, in a flurry of snow, and of blogging.

A lesson learned. 

I've completed my fourth Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Each year, in the first week of May, we are asked each year to reflect on this challenge.   If you survived it too, congratulations!  If you didn't, that's fine, too.

This fourth challenge turned out to be a real challenge for me in more ways than one.  It was a good thing I had prewritten many of my posts, as my elderly mother in law ended up in the hospital twice. And now, she is hospitalized for a third time and all we can do is take it day by day.

My theme "Florida-Outside the Theme Parks" was a joy to write, and I had a good time putting the Challenge blog posts together before everything started to (as the saying goes) go south.

If I could give any advice to myself (and others):
1.  Prewrite.  It's near impossible to keep up.
2.  Don't beat yourself up if you can't keep up with reading of other blogs.  I think this has become the weak spot of this Challenge, with so many people participating.
It's impossible.
3.  Should you have a theme?  I've always had one.  That works for me.

What I don't like about the Challenge?  Finding a blog that interests me, and then, on May 1, it either sits, unloved, for the next few months, or changes into something completely different.

And, in the end:
I want to thank everyone who read my blog during the month of April, both long time readers, and new.  I hope you will stick with me, because I got behind - way behind- in visiting new blogs and commenting. I found myself sticking mainly to blogs I had found in previous years - old favorites.

I got to thinking that blogging, in a way, is like one of my favorite Beatles song, Golden Slumbers/Carry that Weight/The End.

Because, in the end of a #AtoZChallenge, the effort you make is equal to the enjoyment you take.

THE END of another Challenge.


  1. Enjoyed your posts and found that in past years participants often disappeared when the challenge was over. One even turned her blog into an invitation only. I do not think I will participate again as I did not miss it this year.

  2. Perhaps we should all skip the hop part and then go back and do the road trip thingie over the summer. Visit the finished challenges and see what they got up to after.

  3. Enjoyed reading your posts Alana though I may not have commented on all. I totally agree with the second advice that you have listed. Congratulations on completing the challenge!!

  4. I have enjoyed your posts immensely. Well done on keeping up. Thank you for your advice. I planned to write in advance but I didn't manage to and that was a mistake. Next year . . . My reflections of a crazy A to Z Blogging month

  5. Congratulations on completing it. Yes it is totally near impossible to keep up. That is maddening sometimes...

  6. I have been so exhausted by the end of this A to Z that I never got around to even writing a REFLECTIONS post this time... sigh

  7. You deserve a huge pat on the back, and hugs, for sticking it out with all the medical problems surrounding you. It's not easy to begin with.

    I hear you on the visiting blogs/commenting. Not that easy to do.

    Hope your MIL gets better.

  8. I seemed to have missed out on your blog this AtoZ Alana; but it looks like you had quite an interesting one. Cheers

  9. Oh yes, you are so right about pre-writing the posts before the A to Z commences. I had completed almost 10 posts before April began, but by the end, I was doing the posts the night before posting it. Along with drawing the pictures.
    Yes, it was a challenging month, indeed, but I enjoyed it, and am looking forward to A to Z 2019!

  10. You did really well on the challenge and thanks again for participating in it! You're so right, there's never enough time to visit everyone doing the challenge during April. Like I said, I get to a point where I figure okay, I'll go back thru the list starting in May and visit as many as I can. That's just as good, and there isn't the pressure to try and get to everyone in the 720 hours of April. I mean, you have to sleep sometime....

  11. Hmm, something to think about - do my #AtoZChallenge posts match the rest of the year? One thing is for certain, I don't post near as much the rest of the year. I'm guilty of that at least. Great point, and congrats on surviving the challenge!


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