Two words to describe 2023: Roller Coaster. It’s been all over the place, both personally and professionally. I’m sharing the years’ update and looking ahead for what’s to come.
Mom Rewritten – New in 2023
We continued to adjust to life with only 2 children at home. With the two oldest off and living their best lives as adults, the two youngest continued to keep us busy.
Our weekdays and weekends were filled with dance, soccer, and mostly, baseball! My son played baseball in both spring and fall this year. No complaints from me, watching my kids play sports and do activities is one of my favorite things!
Healthy (at Last!)
One big improvement from the prior year was a better health outlook. Aside from some minor sickness, we weren’t plagued by severe illness this year.
In part, that’s because my 7 year old daughter had her tonsils removed and adenoids reshaped over the summer.
This surgery eliminated her snoring and sleep apnea issues, and significantly reduced the number and length of time she spent sick. The surgery recovery wasn’t any fun and took much longer than expected, but we’ve been very happy with the end result.
New Arrival Due in 2024!
As the parent of four, I’ve long written about parenting topics, from babies to teens. As my youngest child is now 7, the baby and toddler stage is in the rearview mirror…or is it?
While my baby-rearing days are over, I’m going to be entering a new phase, and taking a new moniker in 2024 – Grandma! My eldest son and his wife are expecting their first child, my granddaughter and we couldn’t be more excited.
Not only am I pleased to take on this new role, I’ll also have a reason to update the most popular baby posts on my site!
- Best Baby Books
- What Can Babies Do at Disneyland?
- Things to Do With a Toddler
- Walking Outside with Your Baby (post ranks #11 most popular in 2023)
Adding Structure to My Work Day
With two less “kids” at home, I would have expected to have more time in the day, but I seem to have LESS. My two older kids had always been a great help at home, especially with household chores and entertaining the younger two.
With my husband working 6 days a week, often 10 hour days, the brunt of the housework falls on me & the two younger kids.
The kids help when they are able, but the regular daily life work definitely puts a crimp in my schedule. Bottom line: I’m working less and cleaning more (not my favorite thing, by a longshot)!
And don’t forget about this guy, who insists on a daily walk and lots of attention. Having a lab is like having a toddler!
As to be expected, when the going got tough, I turned to chocolate (and banana bread…and cookies…can you tell sweets are my weakness?!)
However, all the sweet carbs just aren’t a sustainable diet for me anymore and I can feel the difference in my body when I eat them. I’ve started back to exercising and healthy eating, somewhat neglected in 2023.
Self-care time was a priority in 2023 and I see no end to that this year! I made 4 quilts and a 8 throw pillows.
In my opinion, self-care is a necessity and not an option anymore. In the past, I’d fit in it “when I could”, which meant I never did it! I absolutely love my relaxing, creative time and try to dedicate about an hour a day before I pick up my kids from school.
2 of my quilts were lost in the mail returning to me from the long-arm quilter. Did the label fall off? Were they stolen on the route? Nobody seems to know (ie: the postal service hasn’t been much help at all).
I have faith that these two beautiful quilts will make their way back to me someday and in mentioning it, I hope that you’ll put a prayer out there that my quilts come home soon!
Mom Rewritten – The Blog
In 2023, I published 75 new and updated articles. This is 15 more than the previous year, and again, I focused mostly on updating older articles.
My site continued to do well, despite Google search changes that caused major ripples in the blogging industry.
I don’t want to go so far as to say the joy of blogging left me, but the up and down nature of blogging income and pageviews was a challenge this year. I struggled to stay motivated, so I definitely took longer sabbaticals away to rethink my direction for this website.
I expect 2024 to be more of the same for me, as I continue to update older content and push out new articles when the need arises!
Family Time Outside the House
In general, I don’t plan much in the way of big trips far in advance with my family. Opportunities pop up and I take them when I can get them (one of the downsides of having a husband that works a lot!).
Theme park travel still holds many of the top slots on my website. I’ll cover my top 10 through this article, but here are a few notable posts.
While Disneyland continues to be a major focus, several other travel destinations in 2023 resulted in new, updated, and potential topics for future articles.
Universal Studios Hollywood With Young Kids – After another visit to this SoCal theme park (which included Super Nintendo World), I wrote this guide with a specific focus on taking younger children. This was my #7 most viewed post in 2023.
The kids and I went with Grandma to Great Wolf Lodge Anaheim for two days. It was our first experience, and sure not to be the last! We had a great time and one we have another visit completed, I’ll be writing up and sharing my guide on the website.
Toddlers at Magic Kingdom – I was able to spend several days exploring Walt Disney World early in the year with my travel partners, Get Away Today. I updated this article, which became the #6 most viewed in 2023 on my site.
Guide to Knott’s Berry Farm with Kids – I’ve been visiting since I was a child, but it had been a while since taking my kids. We loved exploring Knott’s and plan another visit during the Boysenberry Festival in 2024.
Cooking at Home
Baking and cooking at home has always been a joy for me. I continued to share both sweet and savory recipes this year and have several new recipes coming to the website.
- Lemon Blueberry Bread
- Easy Bean Chili Recipe
- One Cup of Everything Cookies (the 8th most popular article on my website!)
- Vegetarian Meatless Soup Recipes
San Diego Local Living
We’re so lucky to live in a city with as many activities and events close by! As my family are San Diego natives, we enjoy visiting areas within driving distance.
If you’re coming from far-off areas, San Diego is an excellent vacation destination. There are a great many Things to Do Outside in San Diego, all year-round!
Since we like to rotate activities from one year to the next, we aim to visit Sesame Place, San Diego Safari Park, and the LEGOLAND Castle Hotel in 2024. These are some of the newest updated articles on SoCal travel.
SeaWorld San Diego – This theme park has been a longtime favorite but it had been several years for us to visit. We enjoyed visiting during the fall season for SeaWorld San Diego Spooktacular, their daytime Halloween event.
San Diego Zoo – A recent renovation in the “Children’s Zoo” area has resulted in an amazing place to spend an entire day!
LEGOLAND Brick or Treat – I’ve been attending this San Diego Halloween event since it’s inception, but it had been a few years since I’d gone. My daughter and I loved our visit and this article stood at #15 most viewed for the entire year.
Disneyland With Kids
I co-own the Disneyland With Kids Facebook group (est. 2017) with 3 fellow travel bloggers. In 2023, we expanded the group to over 40K followers.
Disneyland With Kids is Leslie of Trips With Tykes, Becca of This Crazy Adventure Called Life and Jessica from The Happiest Blog on Earth.
The four of us traveled together to Orlando Florida with Get Away Today to explore Walt Disney World and Universal Orlando. We were also all able to meet up for a family vacation early in the year, to celebrate the kickoff of Disney100 at Disneyland.
Working the reservation system continues to take some advance planning for travelers to Disneyland. Increased crowd levels in the parks can also be a challenge. Fortunately I was able to visit The Happiest Place on Earth multiple times throughout 2023 and updated many other Disneyland articles.
Disneyland still holds the top spot when it comes to my readers, with 4 of the top 10 slots. These are a few additional Disneyland posts that were new or received an update:
Ultimate Guide to Planning a First Disneyland Vacation – Lots has changed at the theme park recently! This article is an ideal read for anyone who has never been or hasn’t visited in the last few years.
One Day at Disneyland with a Toddler – Many guests with little ones only plan on a single day visit. This is the ultimate guide on what to see, do, and eat.
What to Bring to Disneyland – This complete packing guide continues to be a site favorite, falling at #5 for the year.
Prepare Kids for a Disney Trip – Fun ways to get children ready for a Disney vacation, including choosing their own wardrobe.
Rainy Day at Disneyland – Remember that 2023 SoCal hurricane? I was at Disneyland that day, so this updated article has plenty of fresh tips for traveling during rainy weather!
My Number One Viewed Post for 2023
Same as in 2022, Must-Do Disneyland for First Timers is my #1 most viewed article of the year.
I had intended to write a companion article for Disney California Adventure park in 2023 but didn’t get it completed. I think that will have to be a priority for this year instead!
Partnerships and Affiliates
The affiliate links you see on my site are a small way to recoup the cost of running this business. Clicking and purchasing through an affiliate link is never any cost to you. But it’s a simple way to support me and this site!
Etsy – It’s the place to find unique and creative items. Check out the great Mother’s Day Gifts on a budget.
Amazon – As an Amazon Creator, I now have a store front with curated lists! Check out the kid’s book suggestions, safe travel products, and potty training essentials in my Mom Rewritten Amazon Storefront.
Get Away Today – From exceptional customer service, convenient layaway and deep discounts on tickets, I love sharing Get Away Today with my readers. They’re the best place to book your Disney vacations!
Check out this article with the ultimate guide to Disneyland tickets. Get Away Today can offer a full refund on tickets purchased through their website (Disney can’t!)
Thoughts and ideas for this site in 2024
Travel adventures – I don’t have any specific travel plans…but I always have ideas! We’re hoping for a trip to the east coast in the summer to watch our beloved Padres play baseball.
Healthy Living – I celebrated a milestone birthday last year and continue on my healthy living journey, with much shared on Instagram.
More family recipes – My recipe articles continue to be popular. I plan to share more cooking on the blog including my original recipes and more round-up articles.
2024 – Looking Ahead to a New Year
As always, my biggest thanks and appreciation go to my readers and followers who have supported me and my site.
Blessings for 2024 to you and your family!
Take a look back at my blog over the years, here are my other year-end reviews:
- 2022 Look Back
- 2021 Look Back
- 2020 Look Back
- 2019 Look Back
- 2018 Look Back
- 2017 Look Back
- 2016 Look Back
- 2015 Look Back
- 2014 Look Back