Tuesday, July 06, 2010

To blog or not to blog

Well folks, I decided NOT to move to Wordpress, and instead went with a new blog design on Blogger. I've been blogging here for several years now so I suppose I may as well stick around. :)

I've been so frustrated with my little piece of the web lately. I haven't really wanted to write, and I finally realized it was in large part because my blog was so hideous! I really didn't want to drop a bunch of money for a new design (since, at this point anyway, my blog doesn't generate any income), so after hours...and hours...and hours of scouring the internet, and learning some code, I have a new design that I'm pretty happy with for now.

So. Blogging. I have gone back and forth about the role that blogging and social media ought to play in my life. If you blog yourself, you know that it is time consuming. Sometimes it is downright frustrating (does anyone else have a miserable time moving photos around?). It makes you, by default, a huge nerd in "real life" circles. (What? Not everyone reads blogs?) On more than one occasion I have questioned if it is a waste of time, if I am simply adding to the noise of life that is better lived in quiet, private reflection rather than public ponderings.

I know why I began blogging. Just to keep track of our adoption. To keep family and friends updated on our process.

But then I fell in love.

I remember as a small child having a spiral-bound notebook with a unicorn on the cover. (If you didn't know I was a product of the '80s before, you know now.) Even then I loved the written word. Not only did I spend a good portion of my time lost in a good book, I also penned childish poems, adventure-filled short stories, and excited letters to pen pals. Many years later, when Kevin and I were dating, we would exchange emails often. Long emails. Filled with thoughts and hopes and convictions and dreams. Even though we lived in the same small college town and saw one another several times throughout the week.

The pen (or computer), and I, have long been friends. This explains part of my passion for blogging, part of why I don't want to give it up. When I am disciplined and therefore regularly engaging with it, blogging is incredibly therapeutic and energizing for me. It is but a humble hobby, but it is humbly mine.

Recently I was part of a discussion on social media and its effect on society. People wondered if we are somehow becoming engaged in LESS meaningful relationships because of the breadth of our networks. Perhaps. Or maybe not. I couldn't help but share that some of my dearest friends are friends because of blogging. These are friendships of depth. Yet people I would probably not know had it not been for our respective blogs.

Whatever people think of social networking, the fact remains that my generation, and the generations to follow, are plugged in. Like any good thing, this should be handled with care. I am learning to embrace my inner (outer?) nerd and accept the fact that, well, I love blogging. My life has been impacted and touched by the precious words of people from all over the world. I won't deny that.

And so my blog isn't going anywhere. I will continue to share my heart and my life here at just showing up. That is really how it all began anyway. Showing up. Being present. Embracing life, in all its messy, pain-filled and joyous glory.

It would seem that the scrawlings of a little girl and the hopes of a love-struck young woman have simply found another manifestation, a new voice.

So I shall write. And maybe you'll read.

Either way, I'll be here.

17 comments:

MeganAnne said...

I used to have a hard time moving pictures in Blogger too. Now when I want to move pictures I insert the picture and then click on the "Edit Html" tab at the top of the composing window. From there you can highlight the picture code. (it's between the brackets that start with ) I cut and paste the code to where I want it to show up. Then I go back to the compose to see if it's showing up the way I want it to. Kinda funky work-around, but it doesn't cause me to pull as much hair out as trying to drag the picture within the compose window.

Hope this helps!

Kristen said...

Yay! Thank you so much for continuing to blog in such a beautiful & eloquent way. I have been a "follower" for...gosh, probably about 3 years now. I wanted to tell you that I had never even considered international adoption until I started learning about your story/experiences. So you have definitely planted the seed in my mind, and I thank you for that!!

Michelle said...

Ah yes...to blog or not to blog...that IS a question I have asked myself more than once since I began my journey last year. And I, too, wrote MUCH growing up and into my adult years. Writing gives me an outlet that I have never found anywhere else. I'm new to your blog, but I really have enjoyed reading so far and I'm glad you'll be sticking around. :)

Joanie said...

Love the new look! I'm glad you're going to keep on writing. It is a tricky balance, that's for sure!

Joanie said...

Oh yes, and window livewriter makes moves pictures around as easy as "click and drag."

Kristen Borland said...

sounds good to me. :)

jenny said...

Yes, I completely have been having the same thoughts (and have been for some while). But living so far from family and being in the military is what keeps me staying. But I know I waste too much time on the computer, PERIOD. How to stop? Hmmm...

I love your new blog layout and would love to figure out how you did it... let me know, if you have time!

mommiejen said...

I read you in a feed reader, and I've been stalking...er, following you since 06 when we started our first (ET) adoption. I'm on my third blog, I keep moving around, and this time was due to privacy issues and such...but I'm still here. I know what you mean - I can go for a week or more without blogging, or want to blog but just can't keep my eyes open to type.

And I love the new design!
Blessings,
Jenny

Shana said...

Hey, just curious if you've figured out how to make your "tabs" at the top (homeschooling, adoption, etc) live pages that you can actually post to, or if they are just static pages where you can update the content, but not actually put new posts? Okay, sorry, that sentence was really long and didn't make sense. But if you can figure out what I'm trying to say, let me know. Because that's what I've been wanting to do on my blog but haven't been able to figure a way.

this is us said...

LOVE the new layout! Great job!!! And I'm so glad you're back - if you use a hit counter, you will see obsessive clicks from the Children's Hospital IP address. :)

I am so grateful for your blog - and the real life friendship that came as a result! I think that although this is a new way of establishing relationships, the relationships we develop are meaningful, substantive, supportive and such a blessing! I may even start up again myself. :)

Marissa said...

So glad you're sticking around! Your blog looks beautiful. Want to do mine? :)

Ginger said...

Well, I blog mostly because my love of scrapbooking took a backseat when the kids starting arriving...I'm depending on my blog to record the memories which I will hopefully transfer to scrapbooks at some point (and also to keep family & friends updated on the kids mostly). Mine is private, mostly because I worry a lot about all the creeps out there, but I'm hoping to start a second more anonymous one soon that will be about a lot more than just recording our family memories...more of an outlet for my ideas & writing desires. And yeah, I find the picture uploading to be my biggest obstacle to blogging more frequently because it always takes me so long to get the pics where I want them.

Jeannett said...

The "to blog or not to blog" question is always around. At least for me. We shall see...for now, it's okay...but in another year? meh.

love the new look! had to click over from google reader to check it out! :)

Angela said...

ditto what jenn said.
and...i mess you and her when i don't see new posts. i think that even though we are friends irl, it still helps me know things about you guys that we might not ever talk about face to face. it is another way to feel connected to you.

and i know. i stink. i haven't blogged in so long! yikes. maybe i'll update mine now...

Charla Liedahl said...

Your new design is darling! I will keep coming back for more! And I completely agree that the picture uploading nightmare keeps me from blogging on a regular basis, as well. Grr! Write away!

Kristen @ St Monica's Bridge said...

Great new design! I've had a lot of issues that make me question why I blog, but here I stay.

jenny said...

I love the new design! It really looks great. I am super glad you decided to keep blogging. I left you a comment awhile ago, but I have read your blog for a long time now and really love your perspective on adoption and family. I have a brother that lives in Denver (Highlands Ranch) so maybe sometime when we're visiting we'll have to meet up in "real life" :) Excited to hear more sometime about where you are in your adoption proceedings. We are on the waitlist for ET for our 4th child. Have a great day!

Jenny
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