Exactly one year ago, I hit ‘publish’ on this post. I went from being a regular person to being a . . . blogger.
Why did I start blogging? Three reasons emerge with clarity:
1) I had been working for about 8 months at an office job that required my butt to be in a chair from 9-5, however did not give me a full 8 hours of work.
I tried to fill the empty hours with reading books, reading the Pioneer Woman’s blog, and researching periods of history I knew nothing about (is it called ‘researching’ if it’s just on wikipedia?) in order to become a better wife for my historian husband. However, there’s only so much reading one can do in a day before one’s eyes bug out and one starts screaming and pulling out wads of hair from one’s scalp. I was going crazy. I needed something to do, something I could create during those long hours. I needed to make the transition from just being the recipient of writing to being the writer. Since I sit in front of a computer screen all day, blogging seemed like the perfect solution.
2) The Pioneer Woman. She inspires me, makes me laugh, and made me realize that blogging wasn’t necessarily an online journal in which I had to weep and moan and publicly gnash my teeth about various and sundry dramatic events in my life (this would have been problematic since there is no drama at this point). Blogging could be whatever you made it to be! There is a time for gnashing of teeth, but for me, that time is not now. Plus, the PW had killer step-by-step photographs for all her recipes which I was dying to emulate.
3) Photography. I had purchased my Nikon DSLR in February of 2010, and I suspected that blogging would be a wonderful outlet and a motivational kick-in-the-butt that would push me to become a better photographer. And it has! Please compare the following pictures, one from a recipe very early on, and two from more recent recipes.
This is a picture of Mush, from my first month of blogging . . . it’s not looking very appetizing, but ironically it’s my favorite recipe among all the ones I’ve posted. The picture: dark and underexposed, screwed up white balance (too heavy on the blues), sketchy focus.
And here’s a picture of my Shredded Brussel Sprouts from February, looking worlds better. Ah, the sweet smell of progress.
And that Mushroom Sage Pasta–oh heavens. I need to make that again soon.
I can’t wait to see where I am–photographically speaking–another year from now.
What have I learned from blogging?
1) The world of blogging, in general, is so extremely positive. A whole network of women, including old friends, family members, and bloggers I’ve never met face to face, leave the happiest and most motivating comments on a daily basis. Thank you ladies! And gents . . . the few of you that stumble around here.
2) I love writing. I love photography. I want to get better at both, and this is a great medium to do so!
3) I’ve learned about myself through this process. I’ve learned that it’s important for me to be engaged in creative endeavors–it makes me feel alive, and I believe that when I unleash my creativity (be it through day-to-day cooking, blogging, photography, writing, singing) I’m fulfilling some part of my Purpose in life (big ‘P’ purpose–you can read more about that here). Another point: I grew up in Spain, where sarcasm and pessimism reign supreme. Yes, Spaniards also like to party and are absolutely wonderful people, but there’s a cynical edge to the culture that is undeniable. It wasn’t until I moved to the States for college that I started to suspect I wasn’t actually a melancholy semi-depressed individual. I was pretty darn happy. I like being happy. I like seeing the good side of things. And I like sharing that happy-go-lucky attitude through my writing–an attitude whose feet (I hope and pray) are firmly planted on a deep eternal joy that comes straight from God. There’s no place for flimsy and ephimeral joy in a world that has so much pain and suffering–I want to have a hard-core joy. One that weathers life’s twists and turns and hurts and falls. It gives me a pick-me-up to write from that perspective, and I hope it gives you a pick-me-up to read it. I am an optimist with a firm foundation for that optimism, and blogging has really made that clear to me.
I could wax on and on–but instead, being that it’s my . . . argh! I told myself I wouldn’t use the world ‘blogiversary’ . . . year milestone (phew), I think I’m going to go have a fresh cup of coffee to celebrate. If you feel like reading some tidbits from the past, some of my favorite posts have been these 2 serials:
Questions for the future of blogging:
1) How can I con my sisters into writing guest posts for me?
Erica and Heidi, please send your recommendations on that last question. I figure you can tell me how to con you better than anyone else out there.