Tag Archives: blogging

Blogging Goodbyes

This post may come as a shock to a few committed readers, but I have reached a decision that I am convinced will be freeing for my life:  I am shutting down my blog.

There have been signs for a while now:  my lack of interest, the urge to be doing rather than editorializing, the reduced number of posts, the many breaks.  Some of you may even have seen it coming.  I wasn’t sure myself that this was the route to take until yesterday afternoon, during a period of intense reflection.

For a while I thought that I wanted to share something with others through this medium.  I still want to share.  I still want to write.  In fact, I have several posts banked on my dashboard. But through a year+ of blogging, I have learned that I have little interest in doing the things I need to do to promote and develop this particular blog. While some day, I might find a niche that will enthuse me enough to motivate me to do the business of blogging or I might maintain a blog through a workplace; right now, when I’m really honest with myself, I want to be doing other things. Blogging has become an energy suck rather than something that adds to or revitalizes my life.  So I’m choosing to let it go.

I really want to write, to have conversations with friends, to read uplifting and creative works of others, to talk about books and parenting, and personal growth with the people in my life.  I can do all these things without the medium of a blog. Someday, if professional goals align with blogging again, I’ll have a better sense of where to start.

In the meantime, I’m going to relish every minute of homeschooling my preschooler.  I’m going to get out in nature on nice days and breathe.  I’m going to heed the needs of my body by finding time to exercise properly.  I’m going to put my creative and professional energy behind writing and submitting poetry.  That’s part of how I knew:  I would never, could never, axe the poetry.  But the blog…I feel almost a giddy sense of freedom from the release.  No more Facebook page and e-mail maintenance.  No more knowing I need to be on Twitter to build an audience, but really dreading engaging in one more social media outlet. No more wondering about views and how my words will be heard.

I’m sure there will be elements I’ll miss. Part of me will miss having my voice mingle with the others in the blogosphere.  I know those moments will pass and be replaced by gratitude for the time I will have to spend on other meaningful parts of my life.  I will miss some readers, and hope to keep connected to some of you via e-mail or your own blogs.  I will miss the easy mechanism for sharing events and pics with friends and family “back home” but I figure those who are really interested will make an effort, as will I, to stay connected via other methods.

Blogging has been a great learning experience for this part of my life.  It has helped me stay tuned into to my own voice, to value what I have to say, to step outside my comfort zone and risk sharing, to stay connected when I was floundering.  It has helped me define what is and what isn’t essential to my current life and to develop creative discipline which I now hope to apply to my poetry writing.  Wonderfully, it has led me to meet some great people with interesting and thoughtful things to say.  I know I’ll have some pangs as I push the publish button on this post.  What I anticipate though, is that on the other side of the post will be the sense of freedom to just be and to continue to live authentically and fully with no edits, no reservations.

Many thanks and best wishes to my readers; it’s been great to share this journey with you!

If you wish to keep in touch via e-mail; please contact me at therippleeffect2009@wordpress.com within the next month. 

I still would be up for any guest posting opportunities if any fellow bloggers miss hearing what I have to say :)

 


Belated Blogoversary and Thank You

This blogoversary post was meant to be posted on May 8th, the day I first posted at TheRippleEffect2009.  But you know, life, along with some health issues this week, got in the way a titch.  That’s ok, because belated is better late than never for a blogoversary!

Thank you from me to you for reading and sharing!

When I began blogging a year ago, I was unsure where the writing adventure would take me.  My husband, M, had recently begun his blog Glitnir76 and as he shared with me his beginning blogging efforts, I noted that with a blog I could do many of the things I had hoped to do with my Facebook page when I formed it in 2008. (No one ever accused me of being on the cutting edge of technology…). I hoped to find a place to share my writing, parenting thoughts and experiences, poetry, book reviews, crafts and children’s activities.  I hoped to build a readership from current friends and family members and also some new readers who wanted to share and connect over the post topics.  I was a new mom in a new town, looking for connection via social media and a home for all the new parenting experiences and feelings that I was sure other parents had also encountered or felt.

142 (now 143) posts later, with a Facebook page, a small but loyal group of readers, and a year of blogging completed, I am glad I stuck with it.  Blogging has given me a way to share my daughter with my out of town loved ones, to have conversations about parenting with old friends (even when we are playing endless games of phone tag around our children’s schedules we are able to connect and share via my blog), to meet some smart, creative, and interesting fellow bloggers, and to experience the support of an online community.

There are days and weeks when I question whether I want to sustain my blog.  I’m more connected in my real life community now, and have had some non-blog related writing projects compete with blogging for attention.  Previously, I’ve blogged about the challenges of balancing writing, and specifically blogging, which involves so many different facets than writing, with family.  For me, ultimately, the choices that make me feel happiest are the choices to be with the people in my life first with writing a second and blogging trailing along behind.  So though I know I could build a bigger following through Twitter and additional social media outlets, through following more and more blogs (I follow more than I can currently read), and by posting more frequently, I’ve settled into a space of ease with my blog.  Ultimately, it gives me a space to share what and when I choose and keeps my creative and intellectual energies in practice.  I enjoy the new people I’ve met along the way and look forward to future sharing.

I am excited to continue some efforts I have begun.  Reviewing children’s and adult literature and non-fiction titles, talking about green, less toxic parenting and housekeeping choices, sharing toddler friendly activities, as well as some occasional easy, healthy food posts are all part of the ways in which I hope to bring our home into yours via TheRippleEffect2009.  Current parenting issues and topics always make for interesting discussion, so I plan to keep a hand in when relevant and appealing topics arise. And always, I will be sharing about my daughter, V, and finding my way as a parent as I grow along with her.

I’d like to take this occasion to thank some of the special readers and bloggers who are currently fueling my creative energy and my spirit.  I hope you will take the time to check out some of these wonderful sites and writers!  Thanks to my husband for inspiring me with the format below!

First, I have to begin by thanking my husband, M, over at Glitnir76.  He writes and thinks about a myriad of interesting topics ranging from our daughter to politics, to social issues and the environment and always with a straightforward, logical, and intelligent perspective (and I’m not just saying so because I’m married to him!)  He has been my biggest supporter as a writer and mother and I don’t know what I’d do without him!  Love you!

Team Rasler:  Jessica at Team Rasler is my long lost intellectual twin.  We share many common interests and takes on various parenting experiences and I always look forward to reading her clear, thoughtful, educated posts.

Quasi Agitato:  Christine lives in a polar opposite world from my current rural hometown, but I find her poignant and honest posts about motherhood simply wonderful.  I also enjoy reading about her creative endeavors as an actress.

Canadian Mommy Time is a breath of fresh air; a gentle, positive, parenting focused site that inspires.

Dash of Domestic:  JamieAnne has been a loyal reader from the beginning and it brightens my day when she likes a post of mine.  Her recipes and domestic endeavors are always a fun and often a mouth watering read!

On the Go Momma:  Kate Fineske, who also writes a blog for the National Association of Mothers Centers always has a reflective and thoughtful parenting post to share and a fresh, honest perspective.  I find so many of her posts resonate with where I’m at.

Things I Can’t Say:  Shell supports a whole great community of bloggers through her continued efforts to connect them through her Pour Your Heart Out memes.  I have shared many a post on Wednesdays, and so appreciate the venue and support she gives to everyone she encounters online.  For such a committed and caring mom to invest so much time in other bloggers, well, it’s really something!

SuperHero Princess:  How thrilled was I to have Hillary Manaster from SuperHero Princess as a follower!  Her amazing efforts on her blog and through the Sanford Harmony Program are inspiring and I appreciate the balanced and thoughtful perspective she uses to address feminist issues.

Science of Mom:  I’ve recently started reading this amazing blog, which takes a scientific approach to discussing popular parenting issues.  With a background in Psychology, I appreciate the effort it takes to inform your opinion with research and facts and I applaud Alice for the objective way she investigates various parenting topics.  I also find that she is talking about many of the issues that I’m thinking about.

400 Days ’til 40:  I’ve recently found out that the author of this blog and I have many things in common in terms of our career and interest path.  And I find her posts to be inspiring and kind and positive.  I read every post she writes.  They are that good!

Let Life In Practices:  I enjoy reading Kristin’s posts as they focus on common sense well-being and promote positive mental health and relationships.  Her perspectives reflect many of the philosophies I subscribe to, and I appreciate her efforts to help others through her online presence.

MWF Seeking BFF is a favorite site of mine.  My interest in social psychology and specifically social support through friendships makes this site continually fascinating to me.  I can’t wait to read the next post!

Beauty that Moves is another site I have to mention; Heather’s words and images are so lovely it makes you want to curl up on your front porch and just breathe.  To create a sense of place and a feeling of being refreshed with a blog; that’s remarkable!

Thanks to IGameMom, Modern Rage A Detailed House, CatRambles, and all of the rest of the wonderful, supportive, and kind readers and fellow bloggers who humble me by reading my rude words.  I look forward to building more blogging friendships in the upcoming year and continue to be sustained by the positive, creative energy that these writers and readers bring to my life through the power of words.

And thanks to my family and friends who take time away from their busy days to read and comment on my posts.  Your love and support of me, wherever I am, and whatever I do…I am so grateful for it.  Words are just not enough!

Finally, thanks to my little gal, V, who inspires me, challenges me, giggles with me, and fills every moment of my life with meaning.  I hope you can look back on my writing someday, perhaps when you have your own little one, and find continued connection to me through my words.  They are my gift to you.  Love always from your Mommy.


Switching out the Burnout for Joy

Kate Fineske from NAMC recently wrote an interesting post about burnout that captured many of the feelings I’ve been having lately about writing.

In her post, Kate talks about how when all our focus is invested in one area of our life, we can start to experience burnout.

For a while now I’ve been putting my energy into two primary baskets:  motherhood/homemaking and writing.  Though I chose both of these paths for a reason, and both are essential to who I am as a person, devoting my energy nearly exclusively to these areas has lead me to recently feel some burnout.

Instead of looking forward to my Thursday nights of writing, I’ve been feeling like I want to do anything else.  Instead of feeling pride and accomplishment in my mothering/housekeeping abilities, I’ve been feeling bored with the endless piles of dishes, diaper/potty duty, repeat cycles of laundry, floors that dirty themselves as soon as they are clean, and even, yes, answering some of the same rounds of questions from my beloved daughter, who has entered into the obsessively questioning phase of toddlerhood.  When the joy in my job starts to diminish, I know it is time to switch something up a bit.

V's comment: "Mommy, THANK YOU for the tablecloth!" So glad it was exciting for her!

So this week, I’ve tried to create some pockets of change in our routines.  I’ve spent some leisurely days outside with my gal, away from the demands of home.  Getting out in nature always refreshes my perspective and we love adventuring together. V and I had a pajama day where we watched Little Mermaid, read Little Mermaid, colored Little Mermaid (sense a theme?) and generally did a whole lot of nothing besides cuddling and enjoying our time together.  And on this past Thursday night, though I took a few minutes (literally a few) to craft this piece, I spent the primary portion of my free evening creating a tablecloth for our kitchen table and undoing the hem in my daughter’s Renaissance dress in preparation for the upcoming season of Renaissance faires we plan to attend.  I’ve resumed working on the hand embroidered wall hanging I started back in high school (way too long ago to have a still incomplete project…) and picked up again during my pregnancy over 2.5 years ago, that I am determined I will actually finish.  I feel the need to get some gardening dirt under my hands, and some sunshine on my SPF protected skin.

I’m taking on a new role as a consultant to my own life, and if a routine or role is not bringing me pleasure, and if it isn’t necessary for our survival and functioning, it is going to find a new position of importance in my life.  There is only so much time, both in a day and in a life, and while the discipline of doing things we aren’t fond of can be important to personal growth, and pushing over a writing block or slump is part of a normal process, there is also a time to axe the things that aren’t contributing joy or sustaining the body, mind, or spirit.

This month will be a busy one for me.  I have two non-blog related writing assignments to complete by the start of May.  My family is coming for a visit followed soon thereafter by a visit from my husband’s family.  We will be connecting with some out of town friends who are coming in for a day visit.  In the flurry of activity, I am trying to remember to eliminate the sense of obligation that often can accompany a busy lifestyle.  By letting go of some of the “shoulds” and phasing in some more of the things that bring us joy into our routine, I hope to shake this feeling of burnout.  In that vein, my posting may drop off a bit for the remainder of the month.   Hopefully, by my one year blogoversary in May, I’ll be feeling a sense of renewed energy and interest in writing again.

Have you ever experienced burnout?  What are some of the ways you renew your spirit?


Seeking: Moms and Dads Without Blogs

I know a lot of amazing writers without a home to publish their writing.  I know some writers who may not even identify as writers but who always have an interesting viewpoint or perspective to share in an eloquent way.    Not everyone is interested in embracing the commitment to blog, but as my high school news staff advisor used to remind us, “Everyone has a story to share…”  So here at The Ripple Effect 2009, with the goal being to share stories and touch lives, I have decided to host guest bloggers without blogs as part of a new Moms and Dads without Blogs series.

My first guest writer, Laura D., wrote a lovely post using the kitchen floor as a metaphor for finding acceptance and appreciation in the simple things in our lives amidst the chaos and clutter of parenting.  Please take the time to read for a sample of what I am looking for.

If you are a Mom or Dad without a blog, I am interested to hear and possibly share your story.  I am particularly interested in sharing stories that inspire or uplift or speak out about a parenting issue/topic from a fresh and positive perspective.  I am also interested in reflective, observational pieces about life (from non-parents as well).  I am interested in well crafted book or movie reviews. I am not interested in personal religious viewpoints, extreme or divisive political pieces, or deeply personal or combative mini-memoirs.  If you are interested in writing a piece for The Ripple Effect 2009, please respond to this post with your topic and I will contact you (now or in the future) if it fits within the site parameters.  Writing must be tight, fit within a 1500 word limit (give or take a few words) and contain few (or optimally no) grammatical or spelling errors.  Writing samples may be requested unless I am already familiar with your writing.

I have some creative crafty friends who I am hoping to convince to share their work on The Ripple Effect 2009.  If you have original craft projects for kids to share, please let me know.  I have a simple format to use for posting. Pictures are required for craft posts!

I may feature some poetry, but I’m extremely selective with what I post, and know that if it is posted online, you will be limited in your ability to submit your piece to many journals who will consider the piece to be “previously published.

I hope to hear from some of you soon and if you know me personally, feel free to contact me via e-mail with your ideas…


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