Sometimes I want to turn back time and write a blog with the enthusiasm of 2009. A time when blogging felt like the be-all end-all of the Universe. To share about our Little House in the Big Woods! To respond to the six comments of friends! To deliciously dive into reading other blog posts, to resonate with the stories of friends from Nova Scotia, Pennsylvania, California, South Africa, Australia!
This blogging felt like a glimpse into the Bigger Wider World. Beyond these trees, beyond our humming wood stove–what joy to discover that a great Universe existed. To be able to communicate effortlessly with that strumming throbbing Universe! It felt like the greatest love…to share, to connect, to tell stories. To listen deeply to others.
My journalist husband always said–if you want people to read, be sure to post pictures. Even though my inclination is not photographing the visual world, I realized his perspective carried truth and bought a camera and snapped, snapped, snapped. Pictures of our life in the woods, along the shore of Lake Superior.
We each have different sides. There may be the side that loves to write, that adores friendships, that fosters relationships. And perhaps there’s a side that loves silence, meditation, connection with God or the Universe or whatever name a person describes the Holy. A side that thrills to simple presence, to simple being. A side that doesn’t need relationship as much as it needs connection to the Infinite.
It’s hard to be on-line these days. I keep thinking that sometime that won’t be true anymore, but it’s been true for a couple of years now. Until that swift moment of missing this incredible on-line world re-establishes itself. And then I miss: Robin, Karen, Elisa, Amy, Dawn, Carol, Reggie, Sybil, LouAnn, Barbara, Lori, Linda, Pam, Val, John, Nicole, Shirely, Barb, Susan, Robin, Laurie, Ruth, Deb, Jeff, Kat, Inger, Stacy, Brenda, Bree, Lucinda, Debi, Yvonne, oh a person could go on typing for hours just trying to recall all the interconnected blogging relationships. (And sorry if I left YOU out. I wrote a list of my friends on New Years and left out my very best friend–that’s the way this memory goes.)
I discovered how impossible it proved to keep it all up. They say an average person blogs for three years. I basically wrote my heart out for more than five before it seemed to stop. Seven years if you count other websites.
From another time…daughter in a wheelbarrow hugging a snowball
The heart recalls it all very fondly. It sometimes wants to return to 2009, or 2010, or that banner year of 2012. It still loves writing, but it doesn’t want to write another word about our Little House in the Big Woods anymore.
Until it does. Who knows? It could all change in February. It could all change in March. The dam may break and the words may pour forth again. I keep waiting to see. The reading of other friend’s blogs may happen again. But if it doesn’t…I remember and bless you. Thank you for the Presence you gift the world… Thank you for being part of this world of wild blueberry jam and snow sculptures. Thank you for shining forth.
What time in your life do you look back fondly? What time brings forth shining memories, even though you might not choose to return?
Hi, Kathy! Thank you for your post (always insightful); it’s like hearing from a dear friend and brightens this dreary, cloudy day.
Hi back, Shirley. Gosh, I sometimes think unexpected things DO make the dreary winter days suddenly more precious and bright and hopeful. It’s cold and snowy and our wood stove fan belt seems to be broken today. Thanks for commenting.
You aren’t alone! I was blaming my dried-up writing muse on lots of things but I think it just went its way. Maybe it will pass this way again. Maybe it won’t. I think we both just need to get on with our lives and what works for us now.
Esther, you are so right about getting on with one’s life. I never even think about blogging anymore…except maybe on a long snowy weekend day when the wood stove belt is broken and squealing all day in the basement. Then the memory of how much I enjoyed blogging comes back. It seems like it was such a precious time that just disappeared. 95% of the time it doesn’t matter, but it feels sweet to remember at times and to perhaps even stop by and say hello, dear friends, hello. Nice to hear from you!
The words don’t rise in the numbers they used to for me either – but still I want to keep going, even if the “going” is only doing one blog a week and that blog following a meme. Then there are those times when the words are pushing and shoving and screaming to be released, and sometimes there is more safety to release those words to my blog world and my blog friends, who have the option of simply not reading those words should they so choose, than there would be to spew them at my nearby friends, who live on the opposite side of the fence from me ideologically for the most part.
Whether you come back to blogging frequently or just occasionally, it is always good to hear from you – via blog or via Facebook post.
Carol, it’s interesting reading what’s going on in your life blogging-wise. I smiled to read about those words pushing and shoving and screaming to be released. Yes, sometimes it’s a godsend to have a place like a blog where we can just vent and explore and try to express what’s inside us. A much safer place than, say, Facebook. I have always admired bloggers who keep going on a weekly basis. Take care, my friend.
How lovely to read your words this morning, Kathy. That’s what makes the world spin, my friend – change. It can be as extreme as changes in the big wide world or just our private home and ‘self’, but change is here to stay. (Now there’s a paradox! 😉 )
Over a year ago, I went back to ‘school’ (online) and started two university courses, one being an Associate Degree in Creative Writing. The writing bug is part of who I am. Studying leaves me with less time to blog now, and I feel tired with my old blog too, it needs a re-vamp. I registered a new domain name just this morning (my name) as I prepare for changes in the near future.
Just a though, would a new blog inspire you to write online again?
Joanne, it seems spiritual sages say that the only constant is change and that change so often scares our little selves or egos so much. It’s the unknown. I do love that you’ve been studying writing and following that dream of yours. And YES, you are spot-on that a new blog might inspire. Perhaps you can help: does it cost now to start a new blog on WordPress? I was looking into starting another one a month or two ago and noticed that new blogs seem to cost money, unless am reading things wrong. On the other hand, it feels impossible to figure out what angle might inspire and satisfy. Happy times with your changes in the near future! It will be interesting to see what you choose to do.
Oh, as far as I know, you only pay for any added extras on your blog, Kathy, such as a .com domain name. If you do decide to start a new blog, make sure you add a message here, to let us all know. 🙂
It’s wonderful to see you again, Kathy. 🙂 If I went back in blogging time, it would be the year I followed your great example and got outside every day. As for other aspects of my life, there is so much to be grateful for right now — my new grandson, to name one — that I’m not sure I’d want to go back even if I could.
First of all, congratulations on your new grandson! That is so cool, Robin. What a sweet new change in your world. It’s funny…I don’t really want to go back in the blogging world at all. That’s what’s so odd about writing these days. Yesterday a small part of me was feeling nostalgic and it seemed imperative to write about it from that small self’s point of view. A part of the challenge these days is that whatever blog post appears it seems that it’s mostly untrue, because it’s only representing a tiny aspect of the psyche. In the “old days” it felt like everything was more true because it felt like there was a separate self who was somehow unified and therefore speaking “the truth”. It also feels like most people would not understand or resonate with this perspective and would just look askance. I am not sure if this paragraph even makes sense, which is why conceptualizing anything feels so challenging these days…and a part of “me” misses that ease of unaware conceptualizing. (If anyone understands, perhaps you will…)
Words don’t work well for what you’re trying to say/write. I do understand. 🙂
Thank you, Robin. Your understand means a lot to me today. Blessings, my friend.
How nice to see you here this evening Kathy. I suppose on a snowy weekend you do tend to spend time thinking back to good memories. And I’m sure you have good things happening now too…do I remember a wedding coming up?
I’ve been blogging since 2008….and I sometimes do think it’s gotten old. That it needs some sort of revamp. That the world has moved beyond blogs. That I don’t have anything inspirational to say anymore. If I ever did.
But I like to write and this is my only outlet. And I like to take photos. I’ll probably always like to do those things, though I don’t know if I’ll always showcase them in a blog. Change is hard.
Time will tell.
Meanwhile I was really glad to hear from you. And wish you well, and hope you stay in touch!
Hi Dawn, how interesting to hear your viewpoint. And interesting that we’ve been blogging about the same length of time, although you have been much more consistent. It’s good that you’re still sharing if writing and photography still fulfill you. Things have changed so much internally in me in recent years that it’s hard to express in the same ways. And oh yes–lots of good things happening. TWO weddings, in fact. Another trip to Florida, and one downstate in the summertime. Possible visits with both kids. There is actually so much that could be written and shared about our new roof rake, about nature, about tons of things, like our squeaking wood stove motor belt and how it could or could not drive a person crazy. About learning how to act after retiring from one job. About the coolness of writing a journal each year that records everything important that happens in that year–all the deaths and births and trips. And how you can look back at that journal for years and years and know WHEN everything happened. Oh, there would be so much to write about…if the typing fingers cooperated. It just feels puzzling sometimes. One minute you’re blogging and one minute you’re not. And you wonder: what happened? Where is that person who used to blog? LOL–you can see that writing is not a problem when the fingers start going.
So nice to see you here, Kathy! Hope all is well with you these days.
All continues to be interesting, Cindy. Lots happening and not happening. Trying to figure out what to do with my spare time now that I’ve retired from one job. This past week watching videos walking for one mile–just because it’s been too slippery to walk outside. Lots of reading, movies, going to Houghton/Marquette, etc. Hope all is well with you, too! That you’re not overwhelmed with your jobs and that your little island is treating you well…
If I could choose one day back in time, I would choose an ordinary day. A day with two children playing in the backyard, laughing with joy of living not knowing that perhaps a future would bring joy, pain, suffering, death. I would hold them tightly not knowing the future either.
The Universe of all good and powerful Gods, I think protects us because if we knew, would we choose to go on?
It was good to read your thoughts on blogging or not. Such an individual choice; so many reasons that we may or may not. I thought I could. I cannot. The hole I have chosen to reside in at present feels safe. I know one day I will come out and occasionally I come out now but not to talk or interact with people. I can text or write an email that makes some sense. Talking is way beyond my capabilities now.
I suppose not knowing the future can be a very good thing…especially if that future involves suffering and death. If we could see the future, how would that change things? I do not know. Perhaps it’s not a hole that you’re in as much as a chrysalis…a holding period…a time of cocooning before you’re ready to re-emerge. I think a chrysalis is necessary at times. That silence, that cocooning, can actually heal and embrace and love in a way that the mind can not imagine. Sometimes I think I am in a time of chrysalis right now, as well. It’s a time of not knowing the future, of feeling the Unknown. And it’s not an easy time…but perhaps it’s necessary at certain junctures of our lives. Wishing you safe passage, Linda.
Chrysalis sounds safer than a black hole. I choose to be there. Black holes are harder to define in this big Universe full of Black holes in space. Thank you Kathy and safe passage to you as well. Souls passing on the path to the great Unknown.
I think a chrysalis does sound safer and more loved and protected and cocooned. (Even though a black hole may be more “true” in the sense of the Universal Unknown.) It’s interesting how different words can put us in a slightly different space. Many blessings, as always…
It is always good to hear from you! You have captured the experience that I too have gone into and through. I keep hoping to find my voice and my drive again to write, I had nowhere near the following you have yet the experience of blogging was a powerful exposure to the world outside of where I was and am… I think about writing everyday yet still have not done so… ((hugs))
Jeff, I think many of us go through these times. Karma sometimes dictates that there are periods of engagement with others, followed with more personal engagement with self. During those times when it feels like we’re floundering, perhaps we’re expanding our boundaries more than we know. Perhaps not writing is as much a gift to the world as writing is. I do have faith that where we’re at is where we’re supposed to be. And the world will change and shift and we’ll be somewhere else soon…
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: ~ Ecclesiastes 3.
That Ecclesiastes Fella knew what he was talkin’ about. Change is the only constant! It’s just that we humans never seem to know where change is taking us, and it can be disconcerting. May change be good to you! May we ride on its wings in more trust each day…
So good to hear from you today. Hope you are around now and again.
I keep thinking about this today, Lucinda. Whether to start a new blog or not. What to do! And, I suppose you know, prayer and surrender is key. We shall see what happens. Hope all is well with you!
What an interesting post! I’m at the other end of the spectrum as a blogging rookie, still feeling the passion and enthusiasm. The excitement that comes from discovering a potential blogging friend (like I see here!).
Congratulations on persisting past your second blogging life! Hope there will be several more…
Oh that rookie enthusiasm, Gabe! Enjoy every moment. Enjoy every friendship which comes your way. Delight in the new, the untried, the discovery, the excitement. Let yourself be fully taken by the blogging joy. Somewhere, years from now, perhaps never, you will find yourself turning elsewhere. But, in the meantime, delight where the Universe has taken you now!
Nice to read a post from you Kathy. These days I think of blogging as the difference between an old friend and an acquaintance. My blogging in the ‘old days’ was like being with old friends, nowadays it’s like meeting acquaintances – it’s possible to let go for short or long periods whereas before it felt like a tug at the heart to take breaks from it.
You know I stopped blogging? I thought it was for 18 months but realised the other day that it was actually for three years! I hadn’t intended to return but my life is very different from yours, I’m partially housebound and live in a rural area where I know few people and I missed the contact with people. I also found that I needed to share photos and my experience of the birds that come to our garden and patio and various other things that ‘settle’ me. The earlier blogs were more for other people, this one’s mostly for me and for anyone who finds it pleasant to visit and read. 🙂
I love it when you return to do a post, even if your heart’s not entirely in blogging anymore because, even though we’ve never met, you’re like an old friend – you’re one of the first bloggers I ever knew here on WordPress and you help keep me anchored. I care about you, even when you’re not here. Hugs. Be well, Kathy.
Val, blogging can be a very good thing. Especially for one who is housebound or isolated. I think I partially started blogging because of this feeling of isolation. It’s a gift when we can share bits of our day, the winged creatures, the prancing deer. How interesting about our perception of when we ended blogging. I swear it stopped two years ago for me—but if you look “in actuality” I do keep blogging here and gone, here and gone. How kind and caring for you to say that I help keep you anchored. Other people have said the same thing and I don’t really understand exactly what that means. How can another person keep one anchored?? I really want to understand this. Have been thinking all day today if it would be possible to start another blog with enthusiasm and dedication. Part of what wears me out (and this feels awful to say) is the strong desire to reciprocate and respond and read other’s blogs. I find I can’t keep up with 40-50 others on a regular basis. And instead of choosing with whom to engage I say…enough. If it’s not everybody, it’s nobody…
I know the feeling about feeling worn out having to reciprocate and reply and keep up. There’s this need that you and I have, I think, to inform people when we’re not going to post (and I’m just on the verge of one of those myself as I am ill at the moment with migraine and vertigo… this comment box is swimming in and out of focus!) but you know what? I think apart from people who just breeze by, the rest realise we have lives to live away from our blogs. So – maybe try to treat the blog as an occasional thing, like a not-often-visited picnic spot, and regard the people who read it as birds that fly in to take a crumb from time to time.
As for the anchoring: it’s a sense of the familiar and of having got to know a person, even if it’s only a miniscule amount of their personality, a side or two of them. I keep an eye on your blog, sometimes reading old posts. And pop in to Facebook to have a look sometimes.
The important thing is to live your life the way that is right for you. xx
First, I hope the migraine and vertigo ease soon, Val. Second, yes! Why do we feel the need to inform people of our postings? And you are right–most people really don’t even care. But some people do. I am getting more OK about simply being OK with whatever appears here. If this blog about blogging/not-blogging needs to appear again to appease part of the psyche, then that’s OK too. And someday there may be no more half-apologies or explanations and that will be OK too. But for now…if something inside wants to write yet another blog about not blogging, heaven forbid, it’s truly OK. xoxoxo
It’s always good to hear from you Kathy – here or on Facebook (though I confess to avoiding FB for the most part of late with the exception of my politics-free photo page). The old muse is a funny thing. I wrote regularly for about four years – maybe a bit more – and then I just stopped. Much has changed, and much has stayed the same, but I just don’t have a story to tell. And then there are days that I do, but I just don’t have the patience to set it down.
I hope you and Barry are well. One day I’d like to get back to that area in the winter – maybe even stay in Calumet again. In the meantime, I’ll hope Barry stays anchored to the shore ice while out fishing, that the toilet doesn’t cause you too many troubles (grin!), and that the woodpile always has enough to keep you warm.
Dang, Heather, I forgot to type YOUR name. And you were one of my best blogging buddies EVER! (I could feel myself getting into a lot of trouble when I started typing names of blogging friends…) Interesting to hear your thoughts. And interesting to think about the muse and how it’s here and then it’s gone. Like you, I have stories to say at times but it’s not a matter of patience–it’s a matter of desire. It just doesn’t seem to be here. A part of me keeps thinking today about starting a new blog that has a picture and perhaps a spiritual insight. Nothing long or complex. Just something small and poignant. Heather, I do love what you’re doing with photography these days. Your work is amazing! And, dang it girl, give a call when you come up our way and we’ll get together again. P.S. Barry’s staying off the ice-less bay this year, and our toilet is just fine, but the darn woodstove fan motor belt is causing big time troubles this weekend. Oh, and we went to the Hilltop for a late breakfast today. xoxoxoxo Girlfriend!
I have enjoyed reading your blog posts and looking at your photos these past years. There are times when I feel that I need to do something besides blogging so I often take breaks from it.
There are plenty of times in my life that I look back on with fond memories-like the times I spent with my parents when I was a child; as well as a singles class I belonged to at a church I used to attend. And most of all, the times I first stated writing as an adult.
If you find yourself in the mood to read the blogs of others I have published several of them recently on my blog at http://www.msmcword.wordpress.com.
And I do hope you heart changes its mind and wants to blog again-I miss my “virtual” trips to Upper Michigan via your blog.
Hi, Nancy, thank you for reading and commenting. I enjoyed reading out your memories and times you look back upon fondly. Part of my challenges in blogging has been keeping up on other’s blogs. It’s hard to read 40-50 blogs every week. I found myself so burned out. Even though I enjoyed reading every one, it became too much. So that’s been part of this break. I have so appreciated your reading about our beautiful Lake Superior Upper Michigan life. It’s really unique up here. Wishing you the very best… Kathy
Kathy, Kathy, Kathy, Must I tell you again? Don’t worry if you don’t write for months or even for a year. Write when you have something to say and if there are no words, well then post some pics of the woods and of the lake and of pretty rocks, the waves, the birds. I just hate to think that you want the fire to go out completely.
I think I posted maybe 2-3 times in 2016. But there were family calamities and I lost motivation. Somehow I intend to get it back- just don’t when. I’m not a writer and that bothers me- a lot. I read all these other blogs and the words are so clever and so meaningful and grand and it makes me feel small. But in reality I’ve seen worse than mine (:-)) and my intention is just to disseminate pet and nature information, so in some way that offers me an excuse to be a blogger.
I always love to read what ever you write it doesn’t matter one iota. I do love you, my cyber friend.
Take good care. If you feel the need to comment on other posts do what some bloggers do- skip around or don’t answer at all. Or comment in with one or two lines. OK?
Ha ha, Yvonne D, you do keep telling me the same thing over and over again! I sometimes wish I was the kind of person who could post two or three times a year and never think twice. And now I am going to tell you something you’ve probably heard more than once–don’t let any fancy-talking blogger make you feel small. Your blog is as BIG and Important as anyone’s! It doesn’t matter if words or photos flow more easily for one than another. The point is to be ourselves, I think, no matter what those precious & flawed selves are. P.S. It’s impossible for me to respond to comments without writing a novella! Which is just part of the whole enchilada…
I love wordy replies. If you’ve looked at some of my replies I tend to write a lot. Sometimes, I feel my replies are better than what I wrote in the post.
Kathy just go with the flow. Sometimes I don’t answer comments for months. I become absorbed in reading other blogs and I like to stay in good stead with the folks that are faithful followers. Maybe that’s a fault of mine but that’s how it goes. Just don’t stop blogging. Heck, I only did 2 posts I think last year and those were videos with a bit of my own two cents worth added. I could not drum up the motivation but I did want to blog. my computer is a big hazard since it has all sorts of “spells.” That of itself puts a damper on motivation besides all the family problems.
But anyhow, remember that you are loved and that y0ur writing is unique and very interesting. Now go wrap the big head that I just gave you. 🙂
Don’t know how my comment posted twice. Sorry.
Val, I deleted the second comment. Who KNOWS why technology does what it does? Maybe it’s because the Universe thinks I need to pay attention to what you wrote. Am going back to re-read. 🙂
I suppose it all comes down to why we blog. If we blog because we want to write and share our lives with friends, there may come a time when we find we have nothing to say. Maybe it’s that comfortable silence. If we blog because we hope others will buy our books, we can only say “buy my book” so many times before it gets old. If we blog to impart something helpful to the world, we trust God to give us the content he wants for others. In the past few months, I’ve found (after a 6 month forced blogging break due to technology issues) that being more focused and intentional is helping me have content that seems to be helpful to folks. So after nearly 6 years of blogging, I’m here to stay. Thanks for sharing. 😉
Laura, I so agree! Intention…so often the key that reveals so much. I am impressed that you were able to become more focused and intentional, and that it provided a new life in your blogging. I can’t seem to discover the current intention which would breathe life into this on-line communication, but am listening. Thank you for sharing!
Michael Hyatt presents some fabulous material that has helped me so much! It helped me focus and find the purpose God had for me in writing. I’ll be praying for that leading for you too!
Nice to hear from another Michigander. I write about issues about the Detroit areas housing needs. If you could check out my blog and tell me what you think that would be greatly appreciated.
Kathy — I always enjoy receiving an email letting me know you’ve posted on your blog.
I’m from a small town in the Smoky Mtn’s of East TN and can associate with some of the descriptions and imagery in this post – I wish you well and hope that 2017 unfolds with lavish health, wealth and success for you and your family….
So excited to see your post in my mailbox!!! I’ll take whatever you’re ready/willing/feeling like giving. Always glorious to hear your words/view your photos. Memories – they are a strange thing. Even though I feel like I love every part of my past life, I’d not want to go back to any of it. Well, perhaps when my kids were young and small and I had control of them in the palm of my hand, it felt like. Now I’m kissing and hugging grandkiddies. Life is funny. Life is love, and that’s what counts. xo
Who in this universe doesn’t want to turn back time! I want to go back and enjoy a bit more with my maternal grandfather.. A bit more..
In the past six months, I have realized that blogging and posting can be a distraction to living life. I miss writing and I know that I need to write because that is how I process the big events and savor the little moments. I am one of those statistics that you mentioned (3 year blogging spree) as I was faithful to post weekly for the first three years. Now, I am lucky to post once a month. Well anyway, I hope that we can continue “meeting” in cyberspace even if it is not very often!
Its all just sweet & sour! 🙂
I actually just had my own walk down blogging Memory Lane (and discovered mine goes back to 2004, though it can hardly be said any of it was done consistently), and I completely get the waxing and waning of time and urge to write. Reading back over my own entries was interesting,… but reading the comments, recognising familiar voices from across the globe who once were a blogging stable for me – voices that for the most part, like me, have gone silent, come back, gone silent again and now are who knows where – THAT really moved me. I felt so blessed to have shared so much and so freely with so many. It was, in an odd sense, like rediscovering an old family photo album. Wouldn’t it just be amazing to do a bloggers’ reunion lol
Hope all is great in your neck of the woods!
Hi Kathy, I just found your blog. How wonderful it is… I will delve into your past posts will glee, but I’m sorry I missed you.
Thank you! I am glad that you enjoyed reading this… sorry we missed, too…