/ 14.6.11 / 22 Comments / , ,

Tuesday Tea No.31 ~ To Blog or Not to Blog


Don’t worry…I’m not even suggesting that I not blog! LoL! Ok..now that that’s out of the way… :o)   I’d like to welcome you to my 31st Tuesday Tea chat.  Thanks so much for dropping by today!
I hope you will stop for a little visit, pull up your chair, and settle down with a nice cup of tea…iced or not..depending on the weather of course.  (Mine’s Red Raspberry!…Mmmm!)

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As I mentioned on Saturday, one of the sweet finds I came across while shopping with my mom was a set of white bone china tea cups.

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They really are lovely…very delicate and trimmed with gold.  I paid a whole $1.00 each from our local thrift store! This was a happy find for sure. I bought two so Rebekah and I could have a matching set. 
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We had a lovely tea time together this morning. She set the table with her beautiful Zinnias arranged in a vase for the centerpiece.

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And I laid out a vintage tablecloth cross-stitched by my Grandma Wood…a truly special treasure--How I miss her! She always set the prettiest table…

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Rebekah’s  flower garden is growing very well in spite of the lack of rain around here.  Aren’t her Zinnias lovely?

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Please feel free to link up for my tea party. I hope that my readers will visit some of the ladies who link up to our tea party today.  You will certainly enjoy getting to see their pretty things and read their thoughtful posts.

Today, I’d like to chat for a little while about blogging. Whether you write a blog or read blogs, I’ve been thinking that like any other activity in life, it’s great to make sure that it’s still a good thing for our lives.  (This is a pretty long chat, so feel free to skip it if it isn’t your ‘cup of tea’. :o)

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Several times over the last year and a half, I’ve asked myself..should I keep blogging..or not?

Rebekah and I were thinking about this again, recently, because we just watched the movie Julie and Julia. 
For any of you who are struggling with this issue..the movie certainly gives you food for thought! I had to laugh at Julie’s blogging woes…and joys. Her story was all too familiar.

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The movie depicted quite accurately not only the pleasure and self-esteem building that can come from blogging..but also the pitfalls so common to new bloggers. It can be quite addictive for sure. The one thing that stood out to me was the impact that blogging had on her relationship with her husband and even her job.

Obviously not everyone is going to get so head over heels into blogging that it damages relationships in their lives…but it CAN happen!  I think that most of us who have been blogging a while, have found that you have to decide where in your life blogging fits. Is it a priority?…or just a pastime?  It really depends on why you blog.

For most of us it’s purely relationship building and getting to share our creative efforts..much like a quilting or sewing bee. In a day where we rarely meet our neighbors, I think blogging has given we women a way to connect again.  


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For those who use blogging to widen the horizons and build the success of their businesses, blogging has to be a pretty major part of their lives. There is no question that it helps people in building their customer base. I love how blogging adds a ‘personal element’ to businesses…especially internet based ones!

Maria of Color Me Happy wrote a fantastic post yesterday about how to make a successful blog..and the commitment in terms of time and energy that it takes. I think her blog is wonderful and her perspective is perfect. I agree with her 100%.  She is a business woman…and a giving person too. Her blog has taught me so much!
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She is, in my opinion, someone for whom blogging can be a major part of life..because of her position and season in life. She doesn’t have children to care for and she does run a business. Blogging helps bring in her bread and butter-very important!

But for some of us there is an inherent danger…  

The reason I felt the need to talk about blogging today is to perhaps give a ‘heads up’ to any of you who are new to blogging..or even to those of you who have been regular bloggers but are experiencing  difficulties.


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When we find ourselves more caught up in ‘online’ friendships… than in loving our families…. we may be heading for trouble.   
When the blogging gets done..while  the shopping, cleaning, and bill paying...slip... it’s time to take a step back and re-evaluate whether blogging is a good thing for us..or if we might need to slow it down. You may think it’s all in balance..but your family will be more objective about it. Ask them. Listen with an open mind. Pray about it.
I went through this myself almost a year ago. I was struggling in many ways at that time and dealing with a lot of stress from handling my father’s estate.
Blogging became…. in some ways…. a means of ‘escape’ from the daily pressures of life. 
It began to ‘take over’ normal daily life. I found myself doing things just so I could ‘post’ them.  The pressure to post and comment…became a negative rather than a positive. The joys of the praise…became somewhat addictive. Yipes!

The kids regularly complained about my time online. They felt displaced. My husband didn’t..but he was worried.  I knew in my heart that things were getting out of whack. 

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I prayed..I repented… and I even made the decision to quit..for the sake of my family and hubby.  Nothing was more important to me than fulfilling my calling to them…especially not blogging.  I talked to hubby about my decision and amazingly, he didn’t feel that I needed to quit…but that what I did and how I did it needed to change. He was so blessed that I cared enough to give up something I loved so much for their sake. 

I made a commitment, at that time, to quit worrying about comments…or doing things just so I could post them. I quit trying to be a DIY or Home and Garden blog.  I quit trying to build traffic. 
 
Instead, I offered this blog up to the Lord and made a promise. I would only blog REAL life. Whatever I was doing…I would post it. No more ‘projects’ …just for fun.  I had work to do and blogging was interfering with those responsibilities. On the other hand, if I posted what I was already doing..as time was available..then that was “OK”.

I also made another promise to myself—if anyone..kids, neighbors, hubby…Mom… called or needed me, then I would drop any bloggy activity I might be doing at the moment.   Melissa called her blog, Until Wednesday Calls, for the same reason. Her daughter is named Wednesday…and she comes first. I so admire her for that!
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Hubby loved it!

I knew I would not end up with a huge audience..or tons of comments. But to be a real blessing to you..I had to be REAL. I left the ‘results’ up to God and followed my heart and conscience.  

I’ve never regretted that decision. I’m in for the long haul with this blog. For me it's a marathon..not a sprint.  I love teaching and encouraging homemakers and feel that is what I’ve been called to do…but it has to be done right.

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Comin’ Home is now a rather.....well..…practical blog. I want to bless you..so I share the things that I come across that I think would help you, my readers.  I’d love to do lots of crafty things and share them with you, but I’m not always doing crafty things. I don’t re-do furniture… sew cute toys, re-paint and re-purpose home decor…or garden much. So those things aren’t in my blog. But what I do..I share with you. :o)

I think blogging needs to be real and whole.  I used to have so many blogs! I had a sewing blog, music blog, devotional blog, recipe blog, and homemaking blog..plus a weight loss blog.  Maria encouraged me to get it down to one blog, if only to make it easier for people to know where to drop by. It was great advice! 

You know..I’m just one person. I’m a person who sews, writes music, love the Lord, cooks (on occasion-LoL!), loves to save money, and do things myself. And I’m working to lose weight. All of that is now in one blog (that I actually use), which certainly makes it easier to manage. It also makes my blog more unique..because it’s a reflection of the real ME.

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Re-Evaluating…

I have two close bloggy friends who blog very little or not at all at the moment. They’ve both gone through one of these ‘epiphanies’ where blogging began to interfere with their responsibilities or their life’s purpose. Both have small children, which I do not.  I so admire them for taking the stand they did! It’s the right thing to do.  There is a season in life for everything. Is this the season of life for you to ‘give it all’ to blogging?  

Are you living for your blog..

or is your blog a reflection of your living?  

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We want to be the same person at home, I think, that we appear to be on our blogs. At least that’s my measuring stick for me. :o)  Only you, your family, and the Lord, know what is the right decision.  Like many things in life, blogging is not good or bad…unless we do it to excess or for the wrong reasons…or at the wrong time. 

The fellowship and encouragement that we all give and receive is the greatest blessing that comes from  blogging and I’m glad we all have that opportunity. You, my readers, are some of the sweetest people I’ve ever met and make blogging such a wonderful thing!

But my prayer for you today, especially you younger mothers, is that you consider taking a second look, as I have done several times myself, and ask yourself if everything is OK in your part of bloggyland.  

You know in your heart if you need to give MORE to your blog…or less.   :o)  This is  a good thing to do every few months or so for every activity in your life—not just blogging.  Life changes and so must our priorities!

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Then, with peace in your heart, I encourage you to blog away!!!..as the Lord leads, of course. :o)  Together we make the online world a sunny place for everyone

How are you doing? What place does blogging hold in your life?  More or less? What do you think? :o)

With much love, prayer, and thought….

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Linking with these lovely ladies' Tea Parties..and Sites..
Cindy's My Romantic Home
Lady Katherine's Tea Time Tuesday
The Plumed Pen's  Tea for Two
Rose Chintz Tea Time Tuesday
Kathy’s A Delightsome Life: A Return to Loveliness
Amy of Tea Girl in a Coffee World 

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22 comments:

claudia b said...

Hi Donna, I am enjoying some Peruvian lemon verbena tea - and yes, the monkeys are the human kind :D

I would say I blog because I need an outlet for the things going on in my life. I have friends and family but sometimes I just like to share with people from all over, I love "meeting" wonderful people like you and knowing what their lives are like.

Donna said...

I'm glad Claudia..and glad to have met you! I wish I'd had a blog years ago..even if it was just to say Howdy!

My blogging friends have gotten me through some really tough times in life..like when my father died a year and a half ago.

I was far from home and the only friends I could talk to..were on my blog!

Trish - Sweetology101 said...

this was such a touching and powerful post for me. I too struggle with this soooo much. You have no idea what this post did for me. Thank you dearly.

Kathy said...

Hello Donna,
Thoroughly enjoyed reading - I think we all have to come to a point to understand the place blogging has in our lives - I have been contemplating a post regarding the role of blogging in my life.
But, there's so much going on!! It will be written when the time is right!
Thanks for sharing from your heart
Kathy

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Enjoying constant comment tea while surfing the i-net while taking some R&R from farm/home duties.
My blog is my gratitude gift to God...where He's thanked, praised and talked about because I believe what C. S. Lewis said. So much so, his quote is on my sidebar.

Needled Mom said...

I am really glad to read that you are not considering giving up blogging!! You had me worried.

Blogging is fun, but it does have to be done in moderation with family always coming first.

Sandi@ Rose Chintz Cottage said...

Hi Donna,
Wonderful post and lovely photos. I oftentimes get tired of blogging but then when I take a break from it, I miss it. Blogging helps to keep my creative juices flowing and it is my outlet. Since leaving the Ministry, it gives me a chance to connect with other believers all over the world which is a real blessing! Thanks for hosting and have a delightful week.

Blessings,
Sandi

Snap said...

Love the simple white cups with their gold edge ... elegant and I adore zinnias. They make me think of my grandmother. She always had beds and beds of zinnias. To blog or not to blog: that is the question!!!! I have cut my computer time down a lot. I was simply spending too much time wandering around the internet. I check my email once in the morning and once in the evening. Perhaps one more time if I'm looking for a message I know is coming. My blogging and visiting has also been cut back, but I'm still enjoying blogging just as much. Your post is a good one. Makes us all think and that is a good thing! Happy Tea Day!

Lorraine said...

I have enjoyed reading your important thoughts about blogging. I tend to blog late at night when all the kids are in bed and I like finding out what is happening in different countries of the world..seeing photos of where people live and how they live their lives. I use my blog to post up my arty creations but have also started to include photos of my bike rides and some photos of my children where you cant really see their faces..this is such an important issue I think and I wouldnt want photos of my kids used in an inappropriate way by nutters out there. Have a good week donna..I am drinking yogi licorice tea at the moment which is delicious

Gloria said...

Hi Donna. Strange you should post this because just the other day I was talking to my husband about my blogging and the time I spend on it. He didn't seem to feel I was spending a lot of time but I disagreed with him. Every thing you said rung a bell. When I feel that blogging is taking over, I step back and look at the situation. I try very hard not to let it rule me so to speak. I think I'm doing okay with the blogging. I read somewhere in one of the comments here something about "licorice tea?" I've never heard of that, sounds great. Donna, do what your heart says, that is all. Take care.

Donna said...

You're so sweet Gloria...You are always keeping an eye out on me. :o)

EVeryone, you have such good ideas! I love reading them!

Amy said...

Hi Donna~ The new-to-you teacups are beautiful. Along with the tablecloth and Rebekah's zinnias they look even more striking. My zinnias are just peeking out of the soil here. Made me happy to see what might be coming:)
Wise thoughts on blogging. It certainly takes prayer, wisdom, and boundaries to keep priorities!

Linda said...

Hi Donna- Your thoughts on blogging are very relevant ... I often wonder how some bloggers can accomplish all the things they post. I am an empty nester, single and retired and I find it difficult to keep up with my little blog. I do do many of those things you mentioned - re-purpose/refinish furniture, sew, craft, sculpt, garden etc... but not lately ---I'm too busy blogging! lol. Seriousy, it needs balance of course, and should be for the joy of it.
By the way, I liked your sweet tea and the zinnias were soooo cheery.
Blessings, L

Terri said...

What lovely tea cups for a buck each! That was a fabulous find! I love the table cloth you are using and your flowers too. The pictures look so pretty and peaceful.
Your blogging thoughts are thought provoking and timely here in blogland. I am sure many of us have thought basically the same things about the priority of blogging in our lives. I love your question about blogging "reflecting" our lives....perfect! Exactly my intention, that my blogging be a reflection of my joys of creating.
Thank you for your lovely post.
Hugs,
Terri

itstartswithme said...

best post i've read in ages, i've come here from Ky's blog! have been pondering some of these issues for a while and the juggle of family, business and play. Thanks for writing so sensitively on a very real issue!

Trudy Callan said...

Donna, this was an excellent post. I think about this often as I try to juggle my blog with my life. There are so many things I want to post about but don't always have the time. There have been times I have given too much to my blog and not enough to my family. There are times I spend so much time connecting that I am not creating. I am still trying to figure out how to balance it all especially in the midst of having a new baby on the way and four other children still at home. You have a wonderful blog, and I love your approach to blogging and the topics you blog about. I love the "real" aspect to it. Even though I am your real-life friend, your blog helps me to know you better and to learn more from you than I could in real life because of time and distance restraints; so thank you for your investment.

sheila said...

Donna,
I am glad to know we are neighbors, thanks for dropping by my blog. I enjoyed your post today. I understand what you are talking about.It can really consume alot of time. There are many ways of looking at it. I saw a program on Opra about a mom that was in a plane crash and was burned badly and she had been blogging and her blogging buddies were so helpful to her and her family. It was a real blessing to see such an outpouring of love. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I always love to have visitors.

Donna said...

Wow...you guys have such good insight and obviously have given this topic a lot of thought.

Blogging has truly been a life saver for those stuck at home..and sometimes it keeps them from other bad habits..just by having an outlet or a support group.

I did wish though that I had known all of this from the beginning by reading it in a post somewhere. :o) I felt like it was time to 'put it out there' for those few people who might need it.

Thanks for you kind comments and great insight!

Between you, me and the Fencepost said...

When I saw the title of this post in my inbox, I couldn't wait to read it I knew you would have some practical advice. I stopped writing on my blog for a number of reasons or as I saw at the time 'excuses'. The more I read of your blog the more I see how much taking care of my family is a full time job! My sweet husband is starting a new business and he wants me to write the blog. I noticed I was really resisting the idea and when I got silent for a moment and looked, I found the very thought of keeping up a blog made me feel completely overwhelmed! I told him I wasn't 'bored' enough yet to commit to another job because that is what a blog is a job.

We are still talking about it and looking into what will work for me and us inside of this business but your post gave me some more to think about and clarity. As a 'housewife' the impression is I have all this free time and you, Donna, with your kind posts give me peace around taking care of my home and family with love. It takes time and energy. I love that you have found a 'balance' with your blog. I am inspired by that and maybe we will find that with us. Thank you !

Fishtail Cottage said...

Always enjoy coming by your blog ~ & reading what you are up to. i am certainly glad you are not giving up blogging - had me worried for a sec. I think blogging has taken over my life sometimes - i get so excited to come visit all my friends! Eventually i'll figure out a balance...but for now, i enjoy escaping into the web! Thanks so much for linking up to Cottage Flora Thursday's! Hugs! Tracie

Oregon Gifts of Comfort and Joy said...

Hi Donna,

I just ran across your blog through another one. You spelled it out so nicely, and I get what you are saying.

I was doing fine until I found out about the linky/meme parties and then I tried to fill every niche. Then I began to worry about followers and comments.

Several months ago, I settled down on that and just got back to doing what I wanted. I have found some great friends and decided to concentrate on what "I do" instead of showing off what "I have" and things have been much more comfortable. I have even removed my followers widget. I still follow others, but I am no longer tied up in that game.

Thanks for the great post!

Kathy M.

Donna said...

That is just exactly what I'm talking about Kathy. I'm glad for you to have found your healthy place in blogging. :o)

xo
Donna

“There's nothing half so pleasant as coming home again.” ~ Margaret Sangster
Welcome to Comin' Home! If you lived nearby, I'd invite you over to my neck of the woods for a nice long chat and a cup of tea out on the deck. But since we can't do that, I hope you'll stay and look around. I love learning new things and sharing what I learn with friends. Comin' Home is where I share tips from my many projects. Let's have some fun together! XO Donna

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