Belated blog birthday!!

On the 28th of March 2008, I registered nelima.wordpress.com. Between illness and the usual busyness I had totally forgotten until I logged in to my account:

5 years since I registered this blog

I’ve immensely enjoyed the past 5 years of blogging—even though I haven’t posted as much in the past five months :). Looking for topics to write about has increased my curiosity and has led me into researching stuff that I would have otherwise considered too onerous to look into. I’ve read books and articles, listened to hundreds of hours of audio and watched a few documentaries solely for the purpose of blogging about them. Even though they’ve not all ended up here, I’m sure they’ve enriched my life in some way.

Not to mention that blogging has also given me an outlet for using the occasional polysyllabic word ;).

If the Lord wills it, I’ll still be blogging 5 years from now. And maybe I shan’t forget my blog’s 10th anniversary either!

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This is my 600th post!

I like blogging. One thing I find both entertaining and disturbing about it is looking at the search terms that bring people here. It’s entertaining because (1) people type in the weirdest stuff and (2) a search engine algorithm decided my piddling little blog was an authority on that stuff. It’s disturbing because it is impossible to uncover the motivation behind the search. Was the person going through some existential crisis? Or was it just a bout of healthy curiosity? I’ll never know, so I probably shouldn’t drive myself into an existential crisis 😐

Moving on from being philosophical… It’s that moment when I list the top ten posts since my last hundredth post (I hit 500 posts last November):

1. Kings and prophets in the Old Testament (previous rank: 5; was at #6 at the time of my 400th post)

2. Hebrews: Jesus is better (previous rank: 9)

3. I am a Ribbon Hero (previous rank: 1)

4. Holy Week timeline visualisation (previous rank: 6)

5. Hebrews: The priesthood (no previous rank)

6. Why did Jesus have to be tempted anyway? (previous rank: 2)

7. How to tell if you’re proud and what to do about it (previous rank: 8)

8. Lies women believe about emotions (no previous rank; was at #9 at the time of my 400th post)

9. What’s going on in Numbers 5:11-31?? (no previous rank)

10. Lies women believe about themselves (no previous rank)

10. Lies women believe about circumstances (no previous rank)

Incidentally, 6 of the 10 posts from last time are still there, with 1 of those holding firm since January last year. I’m still trying to decide whether it bothers me or not that only one of these top ten posts of the past ten months was written during that time.

On a related note, earlier this year we users of WordPress.com got country stats. Here’s how my world map looks like so far:

Visitors to this blog by country
Visitors to this blog by country (Feb 25 – Sep 05 2012)

 

I wonder what prompted the solitary visitor from Kyrgyzstan to visit 🙂 (A total of 24 countries have a single visitor apiece.) The leading country (the U.S.) has over 10 times the number of visitors as that in second place (the U.K.). Kumusta kayo to all the folks in the Philippines, currently in 3rd place. My homeland, Kenya, is in 7th place just ahead of Italy.

Let me close by thanking my regular readers who follow the blog by RSS or email and therefore don’t show up on the map stats: thanks, and I hope you don’t regret having signed up!

This is my 500th post!

As I did at my last centiversary, here’s the top 10 list for the most viewed posts in the period from then to yesterday.

1. I am a Ribbon Hero!
A piece conceived as pure filler material 😥

2. Why did Jesus have to be tempted anyway?
I hadn’t considered that there was more to this account than meets the eye.

3.  Knowing God, chapter 13: The grace of God
Notes on the doctrine of grace

4. The Bible is His story
I had no recollection whatsoever of this post until I looked it up 😦

5. Kings and prophets in the Old Testament
A listing of the aforementioned personages.

6. The parable of the lost sheep
Notes on sheep/shepherd passages in the Old Testament

6. Holy Week timeline visualisation
What happened during Holy Week, where it happened and who was involved

8. How to tell if you’re proud and what to do about it
10 questions to ask yourself

9. Hebrews: Jesus is better
My first little infographic-like production

10. Forgiven 10,000 talents
How to apply the parable of the unmerciful servant

Then and now

I know you’re not burning with curiousity to know, but here’s what happened to last time’s top 10:

Old Rank New Rank Old Rank New Rank
 1  215 (60-way-tie)  6  5
 2  –  7  13
 3  –  8  124  (20-way-tie)
 4  124  (20-way-tie)  9  26 (2-way-tie)
 5  48 (3-way-tie)  10 / 10  70 (17-way-tie) / 15

Yes, there were lots of ties. By way of demystification, the former top post received only one view. May the new top post suffer the same fate. 😉

And what of the celebratory post that announced all these others? It’s at number 26.

Conclusion

As I say on my about page, I write mainly for myself. This conviction was sorely tested last month when my traffic inexplicably dwindled. The total amount of traffic I received in a 12-day period was equal to what I normally received on one day. That was a perplexing time.

At my current blogging schedule, I’ll be at 600 posts in about a year’s time (Lord-willing). To my (three) faithful readers: thank you, and I hope you’ll still be around for #600 and beyond!

This blog as viewed on a popular tablet device

WordPress recently released a new feature which I had to tweak my Safari for Windows to check out.

This blog as viewed on a popular tablet device
This blog as viewed on a popular tablet device

One, it’s unrecognisable! Two, why the repeating category list instead of my latest post?  Three, what’s with all the blank spaces? Maybe it’s because I’m not using the real thing? Four, nice fonts!

Update: I think the repeating category list is an image from the post… Silly me!

Another update: Here’s a single post (I used the random post feature)

A single post as viewed on a popular tablet device
A single post as viewed on a popular tablet device

Springing into a clean home

Nelima’s blog is 3 years old today! For a present I’m giving it a makeover, switching from the Bueno theme to the Clean Home theme.

Now, my opinion is that Bueno is an excellent theme: more customisable than most (7 colour schemes!) and aesthetically pleasing. I’m sure the owners of the 151,858 blogs on WordPress.com currently using Bueno—and the oodles of others elsewhere—would agree with me on that. It’s just that my vanity dislikes the idea of being one in so many, a handful of which I’ve visited.

After my experience with the instantly-recognisable Bueno, I was in the market for something more anonymous. Clean Home is just that. I was drawn to its minimalism and the fact that it has nested lists in the sidebar (seriously!).

As always, here are the requisite screenshots:

Before: Bueno

Bueno (theme) and Kaffeesatz (font)
Bueno (theme) and Kaffeesatz (font)

In way of customisation, I’d gone for the brown colour scheme and had added the Kaffeesatz font for headings.

Categories in the Bueno theme
Categories in the Bueno theme

The categories are arranged alphabetically.

After: Clean Home

Clean Home (theme) and Acuta (font)
Clean Home (theme) and Acuta (font)

In order to add a touch of personality, I’ve opted for the Acuta font. I’m still searching for a background image I actually like. (Update: I decided to go for a subtle background colour instead. Lazy me!)

Categories in the Clean Home theme
Categories in the Clean Home theme

Oh, bliss! Hierarchical categories!

Update: Author comments get special styling!

Author comments in Clean Home
Author comments in Clean Home

I hope Clean Home and I will have a long relationship.

Another update: I’ve found something I don’t like about Clean Home. The categories and tags within a post link to the global categories and tags on WordPress.com. According to this forum thread, it is for SEO purposes. I couldn’t care less about SEO. Too bad for me I can’t remove them, either. 😦

*The title of this post plays on the new theme’s name, the season of spring (which started a week ago), spring-cleaning and springing one hour ahead for Daylight Saving (which started 1.5 days ago), but I didn’t expect you to figure all that out 🙂

This is my 400th post!

I’ve never done a roundup, so here are 20-ish posts on this blog that fall into at least one ‘The Most…’ category:

The 10 most viewed posts in the past year

1. Making the most of it
Note to self: using very generic post titles will result in lots of search engine visitors.
2. God is…
I continue a chain of quotations on the subject of why the Bible uses so many pictures for God.
3. Looking for a Bible reading plan?
To the best of my knowledge, this is the first and only of my posts to get picked up on Twitter.
4. Jesus’ claims to deity
I posted this 2 days ago. Astounding.
5. Lies women believe about priorities
A post for those ladies who’ve said: “I don’t have time to do everything I’m supposed to do.”
6. Kings and prophets in the Old Testament
Apparently I’m not alone in needing to untangle all those names
7. Lies women believe about circumstances
Example: If my circumstances were different, I would be different.
8. Muy Bueno
Anyone looking for info on the WordPress theme I’m using must have found this post patently useless.
9. Lies women believe about emotions
Such as: “I can’t help how I respond when my hormones are out of whack.”
10. Reflections on 2 Samuel 1-10
The years of David’s reign before the incident with Bathsheba.
10. Lies women believe about marriage
This addresses, among other things, changing your spouse’s character, submission and divorce.

Honourable mention

The largest unreached nation in the world
You can read the follow-up to the initiative in the post: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3. (Parts 2&3 are the best!)

The 5 posts I like the most (in chronological order)

1. He was what??
How could the apostle Peter be sound asleep on the night before his execution?
2. How did that happen?
How did Abraham get Isaac, 100 years younger than him, onto the altar?
3. Lost
The prodigal son had a lousy elder brother. Thankfully, we don’t!
4. Am I to believe that?
A historical fiction short story on the “explanation” given for Jesus’ empty tomb.
5. Don’t make me think (Part 1, Part 2)
My sometimes frustrating search for user manuals online. One post in two parts.

The 5 shortest posts in 2010

In these posts, I manage to make my point without the aid of images, videos or links to external content. I was too lazy to look up posts written before 2010.
1. What was the purpose of the law?
(40 words)
2. 3 things about holiness
(47 words)
3. One-liners on stewardship
(51 words)
4. Why do we have 1&2 Samuel, 1&2 Kings, 1&2 Chronicles?
(66 words)
5. 2 thoughts on Genesis 3:8-10
(85 words)

To satisfy curious minds, the longest post was 1410 words long. It is also the one most likely to bore you to tears 😉

Bonus: The most peculiar search term

“paul and nelima”

Muy Bueno

This blog has new clothes. After over 27 months of being dressed in Connections, and around 3 months of watching what theme the WordPress Theme Team would release next, I’ve made a decision to go with Bueno. I’m still not satisfied with how it looks, but hey, I’m getting it all for free.

I like screenshots, so here goes: Continue reading