Monday, July 7, 2008

And Many Happy Returns.

Happy Monday Morning, Y'all! How was your weekend?

Oh boy! I've been waiting for this day forEVER. I know I've probably mentioned it to y'all about a dozen times in the past month or so, but try bein' somebody I know in real life who's heard about it every day, EVERY DAY, people, "I'M GETTIN' A NEW BLOG DESIGN IN --- WEEKS, ---- DAYS, ---- HOURS AND ---- MINUTES AND IT'S SO PRETTY! IT'S THE PRETTIEST THING EVER IN THE WHOLE WORLD, EVER!"

I imagine those people may even be happier than I am to see this day finally arrive, if that's possible, because it means I'll perhaps be able to focus on something, ANYTHING else now besides HOW PRETTY! SO PRETTY! Is my new blog design! I hope everybody loves it as much as I do!

And you know who else I'll bet's doin' a happy dance this morning? My bloggy designer, Karen, at Simply Amusing Designs. Because along with all of my excited gushing over how GORGEOUS it all is, she's also had to deal with my neurotic scrutinization of every minor detail, my hourly HERRO? We need to talk. Again. messages on Yahoo! Messenger, my constant requests to "try it THIS WAY?" and subsequent "Oh, NOS, that didn't work. You were rights. Put it back how it was!"

And when I say Neurotic, what I mean is, in retrospect it's possible I may have slightly um -- over thought -- a few things as we moved through the design process. At one point, I asked Karen, in all seriousness, "Karen? What do you think might be the psychological impact to readers of a total font change in the text of the posts themselves?"


Blink blink.

To her credit, as far as I could tell by her hasty and reassuring reply on Messenger, she didn't laugh until she fell down on the floor weeping. It's important to select a designer who can work around your specific set of personality quirks, people.

(But if y'all start to feel your psyches ARE bein' negatively impacted by the bold change in fonts, please do let me know immediately.)

(Your psychological adjustment to the new look is of the utmost importance to me.)

(I just wanted you to know that.)

(Maybe we need a focus group?)

Anyway, I've held off on making any other major changes to FriedOkra at this point, besides just the header, background and fonts, so y'all have time to adjust to the new look. In a few days I'll be moving some sidebar items around, seein' as I have TWO SIDEBARS NOW! TWO! And therefore TONS OF EXTRA STORAGE SPACE, which means that I will now start aggregatin' junk to store in that extra space at two or three times my previous junk accrual rate, if what's happened in the basement of my home is any indication of how extra storage space works around here. Where does it all come from, people?

Later in the week I'm going to tell y'all a little bit about the design process for the new FriedOkra, share some more design-related anecdotes and interview Karen about her work here, her blog design business and who knows what else. She's a talented, funny, and very sweet lady, and I want those of you who haven't met her yourselves to get a little dose of her all-around goodness.


As I've mentioned before, this new look is my way of marking and celebrating the first anniversary of FriedOkra! I've blathered away about nothin' here for a full year now, and what a full year it's been, too!

I'm hoping to get to write a post reflecting on that first year later today, but before all that, I just want to tell all of y'all THANK YOU for making this year of blogging so amazing and wonderful and fun. Thank you for every funny, clever, sweet, reassuring, supportive and helpful comment you've left. Thank you for sharing your own stories, your own recipes, your own memories and your own spirit. Thank you for every email, link, bloggy award, question or correction you've gently bestowed on my humble little personage.

I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that writing for y'all this year has changed and blessed me in ways I never imagined possible. Knowing I can come here and tell ya'll about about the funny, humiliating, sweet or surprising thing that happened today, or yesterday, or 30 years ago, and that you'll read and understand and laugh or cry along with me? And keep comin' back for more? And sometimes bring your friends or family along to meet me, too? Well, it's nothing short of a miracle to me, and I am grateful to you, and to God, for the gift of each of you.

Happy Bloggiversary, FriedOkra!


  1. Thank you so much for the opportunity to design your new bloggy look. It has been a wonderful experience (regardless of what you might say) and I am so thankful that I've gotten to know you better. :)

    For your readers: Y'all don't let Megan fool you into thinking she's anything other than an incredible human being - but if you read her, you probably already know that. :)

  2. It's FAB-U-LOSO!!!

    Yaaae YOU! Yaeeee KAREN!

    What a WELCOME SPOT to visit :). Then again, Megan...I've had a crush on you since I first stumbled across your blog (maybe it was the fried okray...maybe it was your fun and engaging writing).

    Either way, it's lovelier than EVAH! Happy Bloggiversary...and many MORE!


  3. I SOOOO did not intend for that to publish yet...I was lookin' for my URL dang it :).

  4. Love it! Love it! Love it! It's so you! Happy Bloggiversary!

    And as a side note - I love Karen's designs!

  5. I love the new design. I have enjoyed reading since I found your blog. I was drawn to it by the name you know Alabama and Fried Orka they just go together. I really enjoy your writing. Thanks.


  6. Blog design looks great. Love the header!

  7. I am loving the design. So calm. So soothing. It makes me want to stay here for a long time! CONGRATS!!

  8. b.e.a.utiful.

    Happy bloggoversary!

  9. If jealousy is the best form of flattery then let me tell you woman I AM JEALOUS. I love your new design, especially the new background and the two! sidebars. I think it is beautiful and very you.
    Greetings, M

  10. It's gorgeous! So homey. It feels like we're all just sitting around on your front porch chatting now, all comfortable and welcome. Which is what it's always felt like to me when I come here anyway! :)

    Happy One Year!

  11. Happy Bloggiversary! I do so love a welcoming porch...fits you to a T!

  12. Oh. My. Goodness! I go on vacation for a couple weeks and come home to find you have a lovely new bloggy look goin' on! It's so southern and welcoming that I just wanna grab a glass of sweet iced tea, plop down in a glider and gab for hours on your new front porch.

    Happy bloggoversary, m'dear!

    PS~ Karen, I love your work!

  13. I like your new font VERY much and your site looks LOVELY!
    I'm so glad you blog - you have a wonderful voice. I love reading you.

  14. Love the new design - Just want to come over and sit on porch swing and have some lemonade or tea and have a nice visit!

  15. very very lovely!

    I'll come sit on the swing and drink lemonade with you anytime. I love your blog.

    xo ~K
    (ps - I revealed a new look on my blog today too!)

  16. The new design is loverly! I absolutely adore the header image and matching blog button. The porch swing is so welcoming, just like you.

  17. Mom and I think it is beautiful!!! Very relaxing. Makes me want to swing on that porch swing. If Lindsey could read she would love it too since it's her favorite color you know BLUE! Happy Anniversary!!!

    Tracei and Felicia

  18. I like your design. I liked the old one too - you have great taste!

    You are inspiring me to make the jump and get a new design for my blogiversary coming up in September. Thanks - I always enjoy reading!

    Beverly @ Happy in the Moment

  19. Megan, I do love your new design and all your blogs. Just never think of anything clever to comment, even though I know that you don't care if it's clever or not. We just got back from the beach, also! Aunt Joy

  20. So cozy and comfy! I love it. Thanks for blogging!

  21. I love the new design. Its wonderful!

  22. Megan,
    I LOVE it! I'm going to have to bring the laptop to my realtor so she can see that porch. It's the one I dream about! I want to curl up on that big swing with a big glass of sweet tea. Great job, Karen! Congrats, Megan.

  23. Love the new look! The porch makes me love the south!


  24. It looks lovely--the picture is so soft and welcoming.

  25. Whew, I am so relieved! I came by this morning with coffee and was told only invited guests were allowed. I cried myself back to sleep, but then I dusted off my big girl pants and decided to come knocking again during naptime. The new blog design is beautiful! Move over so I can sit on the comfy swing too. I love this blog :)

  26. This is gorgeous! Karen's amazing.

    I can't wait to see what stuff you fry up for your second year! It will be fried right...'cause baked and me don't get along.

  27. Oh, it's so beautiful. You were right - you said it was going to be and it is! Karen did a great job and I do love the new font! And I love the spacing. And the clean, crisp laundry-outside-in-the-breeze-while-you-sit-on-the-front-porch-with-your-sweet-tea-and-laptop feeling is so you. Happy Blogiversary!

  28. Oh I love it!!!! It's so soft and pretty, and the font does GREAT things for my psyche! ;) It's so relaaaaaxing to visit you! Love the TWO! sidebars as well. It's beautiful. Happy Bloggiversary!

  29. Love! Everything! The porch swing, the background, your radiant photo! Absolutely beautiful. Happy bloggiversary!

  30. LOVE IT! It just makes me wanna come on over for a visit and we'll sit in that swing and drink tea so sweet it hurts our teeth and nibble on pimento cheese sandwiches. Be right over, even if it's only in my imagination! :-)

  31. Love, love, LOVE it! Absolutely adorable.

    And btw, I'm doing great psycologically, even with the change of font (which I also happen to love)... as far as I can tell, at least. Although that's probably not saying much.

  32. I absolutely love it! It's beautiful, it's inviting, it oozes southern charm - it's Okra! I have to tell you that my psyche is just fine - this will cause no psychological problems!
    I think I started reading your blog about 3 posts into it and I believe I've read every one. I have been so blessed to get to know you this way and am looking forward to only hearing more! You really are a blessing to so many of us.
    Now we'll just be waiting on the peanut!

  33. Love, Love, LOVE the new you!. I want that porch, but it just has to overlook the ocean!

    I truly enjoy reading your blogs - almost like being there. I wish I could be more like you - in more ways that just blogging :-), but then I guess I always have...

    Keep it going - can't wait to read more.


  34. it's so gorgeous and inviting.

    Happy first anniversary and I hope for many more to come!!!

    Love it!

  35. Happy Blogaversary to you. I LOVE the new look. loveitloveitloveit!!!

    I could sit for hours at that porch swing and visit, sipping tea (plain or irish) and gabbing about life. Or better yet, just listen to the sounds of nature.

    Beautiful Blog.

  36. You blog looks fantastic. I love the new look.

  37. You are toooooo funny. Really enjoying your blog.

    You haven't scarred me via font change yet. :)

  38. Splendiferous!!!

    And happy blogiversary!!!!!!


  39. It's gawjus and reflects your writing so well. Good job, Karen!

  40. Happy 1st!!! It is sooo beautiful, fits you perfectly and is so charmingly Southern (with a little prairie mixed in)!!! LOVE IT!!! I feel so blessed to have met you through the blogosphere.