Blog Awards and Other Musings

The Miles Redd skirted table that started the debate: skirts vs. no skirts.

This week I was pleasantly surprised to receive news that Cote de Texas had been awarded the "Best Blog of the Day Award" by the Blog of the Day Awards group. Lana, who writes the newly launched Topsy Turvy blog, nominated me for my "Skirted Tables" entry. Who ever knew that a story about a piece of fabric atop particle board would be worthy of any mention, much less an award? Thankfully the judges behind the Blog of the Day Awards did. The spirited and sometimes raucous debate between my readers and Decorno's readers caught the judges' eyes. Regardless of the merits of such a materialistic discussion, I'm thrilled to have won! Thank you!

And while I'm patting myself on the back, I just learned that Claudia from the Ferret and Hound blog has named Cote de Texas' entry on - what else - skirted tables, to her Top 5 Posts - January. She also cites my "Meeting of the blogs" about my trip to Dallas with blogger Patricia Gray, as a favorite too. Thanks Claudia - I feel so honored to be named twice!!! And be sure to check out All Things Bright and Beautiful for an interview with me on blogging. And just when I could start to get a bit of a big head from all this adulation, I only have to go check my stats at Technorati who rank my blog at a measly and embarrassingly low #73,982!!! Not exactly numbers to gloat about. Ah, well, you can't win them all.

Picture of my family room, shot for Houston House and Home magazine.

All this exciting news has made me stop and think about how much Cote de Texas has affected my life. When I started this blog around nine months ago, it was purely on a lark, something to do to amuse myself and maybe a few friends. I barely even knew what a blog was. I certainly had no clue that Cote de Texas would directly change my life - and for the better. Its effects have been phenomenal, and all the more so because I had no expectation of change, and certainly, no motivation drove me to create the blog. Cote de Texas was borne out of a desire to share my love of design, pure and simple. My family and friends have been very supportive, yet skeptically surprised that I am able to write in an informative and somewhat entertaining manner - something I am not so sure of myself! But, it has been the support from the nameless and faceless readers that has been the most surprising and fulfilling. Those very first comments I received remain the most thrilling ones of all. At this point, I realize I no longer write this blog for just myself, I continue it for the reader and I hadn't anticipated having this feeling of loyalty.

And there are more tangible ways my life has been enriched from the blog: I've heard from editors of favorite magazines who state they actually enjoy reading me. Imagine. My home was published in a local magazine after its editor read my blog. And recently, two national magazines have expressed interest in publishing my home, and, more importantly, my clients' homes. I've reconnected with friends I had lost touch with, and was even reacquainted with a former sister-in-law. I've received gifts from readers, unsolicited and unexpected. I've had art work commissioned for me from friendly bloggers. I've gotten new clients both in Houston and from the far reaches of the globe who seek my advice for their home via emails. I've made so many new friends through the blog - my inbox overflows. It's been rewarding to talk with people who share my love of design. And the most fun has been taking these cyberspace relationships further, meeting other bloggers in person and making lifelong friends in the process. So now, as I look back over the past nine months, what I do know is that through the power of the written word and the magic of the digital camera, what I've gotten back from you, the reader, has been so much more than what I have given. And for that, I am most grateful and thankful.

Cote de Texas meets up with Patricia Gray, Inc. at the Dallas World Market this January.

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