Saturday, 7 March 2009

Things are Going Swimmingly

Two years ago today I tentatively stuck a toe into the blogging ocean and shortly thereafter got sucked right out to sea. That's 239 posts and although there are a fair number that are photos or memes, a lot of them have cost me time, skull sweat and frustration. A few of them have garnered me some much needed and gratefully received compliments. It is scary to put parts of yourself on public display, and I find myself at times very insecure about it. Especially since I am an old, gray fish in a school of glittering young ones. I sometimes feel very diffident about hanging about with the mommy bloggers. They all seem to have better stocked minds, intimidating writing skills and a level of technical competence that I struggle to attain.

It is such a wonderful ocean, warm and full of ticklish bubbles, vast and ever changing. [Don't you think you have taken that metaphor far enough? hisses my internal editor.] As I slowly began to find my way around the place, I discovered that the voices and opinions I liked best, the writers with whom I had empathy, were 'mommy bloggers'. I discovered blog after blog sparkling with wit and erudition, funny, wistful, sad. And every one had something to teach me. Most of these blogs are on the blogroll on the lower right hand side of this screen; not all of them because a few, for some reason I can't fathom, won't load into my 'Following' gizmo. I am contemplating trying to find and load a widget I see around the places I go that allows you to list favourite posts. I need courage, coffee and a lot of time before I tackle adding gadgets.

I am only going to mention one blog in particular because we share the blogiversary - her third and my second. This is Under the Mad Hat (Happy third to you, Mad!), who is one of the cleverest bloggers out there. Her posts are amazingly good; she has one of the quicksilver minds I cherish and an understated and somewhat wry humour that sets you off laughing an hour or a day after you have signed off.

This on line world is not a natural fit for me. For quite some time I printed a hard copy of every draft post and went over it with the dreaded red pen. After two years, I no longer do that, but when I put a post up and see a typo or infelicity or bad cut sneering at me, I wonder if I still should. The brain does not function with the speed it had a quarter century ago, that's for sure. And I never have had the kind of concentration and dedication a professional writer needs. [I just leapt up and grabbed the field glasses to check out a bird that flew by my office window. Now, where was I?]

I was I was both surprised and flattered lately when a group of mommybloggers headed by Catherine of Her Bad Mother and Katie of Motherbumper asked me to join a group concern called Canada Moms Blog. I have joined and as I sit here, I have a pile of printouts beside me on the desk detailing all the steps to take to get enrolled and use Typepad. Oh, my aching head. The printouts are already dog-eared and marked up in red with stars and arrows and I did one major goof in my first post on the site that I don't know how to fix. Setting aside the fact that I have to learn how to do Technorati tags, the style of post they want is different from my usual ramble along twisting paths and I am editing, rewriting, second, third and fourth guessing myself and gulping down yet more coffee. And loving every moment, do not get me wrong. They do say that intellectual activity is good for ageing brains, don't they?

I guess I have swum come a long way in two years, eh?

The first ending of this post has been edited and is shown below. Daysgoby has just told me how to do this. Heartfelt thanks and I will share the cookies.

Now, if I could just figure out how to do that cross out thing, I could have written swum, crossed it out and put in come. Which would make a lovely metaphor bracket. I'm going to learn how to do that. Someday. Soon. More coffee, I need more coffee.

And maybe a chocolate raspberry marshmallow cookie.


  1. Happy Anniversary! Much needed compliments? You have them for sure!

  2. happy blogiversary. and congratulations on the new writing gig!

    you are more than worthy of being here, mary.

    i'm so happy to have found you.

  3. And I couldn't agree more about Mad. Happy to have found her, too.

  4. happy blogiversary

    thanks for sharing so much of yourself in your writing. I am also older and not comfortable with this online world. You give me courage to try. Many times I've thought I'd pull out, I'm pretty insecure about it all as well.

    I hope you don't mind if I keep following along as I learn the ropes. Oh and I have taken your advice and edit my posts in the word processor before actually posting it.

    I did make my first photoshop banner for my daughters blog page--I am amazed! It may have been an accident :( I don't know if I could do it again.

  5. Kaye, glad to have you here. A fellow Tolkein addict is good people. Oh, and I really like your Friday fishing photo (foto? Nah).

  6. Mary -
    < s > what word or phrase you want to have with a line through it < /s > (spaces excluded)

    And I don't understand Technorati tags either. Want to be dorks about all this stuff together?

    I'm SO glad you're here!

  7. happy blogiversary! so glad your blog was born!

  8. Happy Blogiversary, friend (and now colleague! YAY!)

  9. Awwww shucks, lookie here? Thanks, Mary. The feeling is decidedly mutual, you know.

    Also? I really suck at the gadgety end of all this blogging too. I never keep track of my sitemeter or any of those other bells and whistles. They don't really interest me. I can tell you how to share favourite posts, though. If you use Google Reader to follow blogs (instead of Bloglines or just clicking over), then all you have to do is click the little share icon in Google. There's a litte bit of code that you add to your blogger template and voila... If you really want to do this let me know and I'll email you detailed instructions.

  10. I LOVE what you bring to this community - you are wise and perceptive and kind.

    Happy anniversary!

  11. Happy Blogiversary (how do you spell that). It is so cool that you write for Canada Moms Blog. Now a whole bunch of my fav reads write there. I will be sure to read your posts (I can't read them all there are just too many). Take Care