Wednesday, March 24, 2010

the underbelly of my week

I read an article this past week regarding an interview that was conducted with a top blogger. Their advice was if you want to make it big in the blogging world, don't gripe on your blog.

I guess I'll never make it big in the blogging world because I'm a gripey gripe griper. My life is so transparent on this blog that this is a like a litmus test for what's happening in my world. I've tried and there is no way for me to filter my thoughts. It'd be easier to walk by an opened bag of Reese's miniature peanut butter cups.

Last night I finished up an antibiotic that I started last week. Thankfully, it did what it was supposed to do and my sinus infection is totally gone. But I never enjoy antibiotics. They always throw off my whole system.

Other things that throw off my whole system include a house full of people who are sick with the stomach flu. And Day Light Savings time is quite possibly the worst thrower offer of systems, ever. For the past week, it has been nearly impossible to get the children in to bed before 8:30 PM. As a result, they've been sleeping until almost 8:30 AM. Which means breakfast is late - lunch is late - dinner is late. It's a vicious cycle that I've fed in to because all of the kids, including Sir Sleeps Not A Lot (AKA: HENRY), have been sleeping in until EIGHT THIRTY IN THE MORNING. Can I get a Hallelujah?

My home computer crashed this week. My work computer also crashed this week. If not for Charlie's iPhone, I would have absolutely no internet access. It's been kind of awesome because I was really starting to feel like between my day job and blogging, my real life was being consumed by some "virtual / exists only in the computer" life.

There's no doubt the amount of time I spend on the computer on any given day borders on ungodly. I'm on the computer much of the day for work and again at night, to update my blog. In recent months, the bulk of my life exists on a 24-inch flat screen that is prone to turning blue and flashing the words, "Fatal Error."

When I've got something interesting to write about, and I'm able to tap in to the correct words to make a story interesting, I really do enjoy blogging. It's not a burden at all. It's actually one of the most enjoyable things I do all day. But sometimes it's downright exhausting. Especially when you feel like you can't turn it off and throughout the day, you are frequently asking yourself, "Is THIS bloggable? How should I craft THIS story? Will people LIKE it?" Very soon, instead of living REAL time, you are living BLOG time. And in doing so, it feels like you're missing out on your own reality.

Over the past few weeks, I've been receiving a lot of requests to advertise on my blog. This past week, I was contacted by a company that offered to send me two gallons of chocolate milk if I would write about their product. While I certainly appreciate the offer, I've got such a limited amount of time to creatively write as it is, do I really want to spend my time writing solicited advertisements?

For a long time now, I've been trying to figure out, what is the purpose of this blog?

Is it just for fun - or is it an entirely NON PROFITABLE business?

Am I trying to peddle some product?

Am I trying to break in to the world of advertising?

Am I trying to become famous?

How many followers do you have?

How much exposure? Penetration? Links?

How many readers? How many page views?

If you want to get your name out there, you need to go read other blogs and COMMENT, COMMENT, COMMENT! You need to buy ad space. You need to write freelance!

I'm not very good at any of those things. Because I frequently remind myself, "What's the REAL reason that I'm blogging?" If the REAL reason that I'm blogging is so that I can have a creative outlet to record these precious memories for my children's posterity, who the hell cares what kind of page views I have?

Well, anyone that writes a blog cares.

(That's why they have statistics meters.)

If you're at all familiar with blogging, you are aware that there are some bloggers out there who pull in over six figures a year from advertisements. I seriously cannot imagine anything more awesome in this whole wide beautiful world than writing and making gobs of money for it. I also cannot imagine anything more discouraging, because the odds that anyone would ever have that kind of success is virtually nil. So perhaps I should be extremely flattered that someone reached out to me to advertise on my blog!

And maybe I would be if they offered to compensate me in currency instead of TWO GALLONS OF CHOCOLATE MILK.


  1. Interesting. I had no idea some bloggers make 6 figures, that's crazy!!

    I've always enjoyed your posts and have always been impressed with your writing style. I love to write too, but forming my thoughts takes a while (along with the editing I do . . . ), so I tend to stick with short posts and more pictures. It'd be fun to have more readers and it would be fantastic to make some money blogging (even getting some free milk!), but I keep going back to why I started our blog in the first place -- to document what my girls are up to for family and friends and to have that documentation for us, my little family of four. If others stop by once in a while and enjoy what they see or read, great : ) Now if writing was a quick process for me I may think differently. ha!

    Regardless, I hope you keep blogging your thoughts and day-to-day activities. I have 4 blogs I read daily and yours is one of them : ) Plus, your kids are so darn cute and they come up with the funniest things . . .

    Have a great Thursday!

  2. I love your blog! Do not change a thing. It is great that it comes from the heart. Even when you speak of something "negative" it is always in a positive light or very amusing. I look forward to reading it everyday.
    Dee Dee in Plano, TX

  3. Blog because you want to!

    Maybe you need to take a break for awhile and only blog two or three times a week or just once a week. I have a blog and I only post sporadically -- becuase it is what works for MY life. Would I like to do more -- Yes. Would I like to have more followers -- Yes. Would I like to make six figures from advertising -- hell Yes! But I have a 5 year old and I provide day care for my nieces who are 1 and 2 1/2 from 7:30 am to 5:30 pm five days a week. Plus run a small business out of my home. I'm exhausted at the end of the day and so I blog when I (a) have time and (b) feel like it!

    I read your blog because I enjoy hearing about your wonderful family and quite frankly, you are my hero! I don't know how you do it!

    At age 44 I didn't expect to be parenting a 5 year old -- silly me, I thought I was done when my "baby" graduated in 2004. But I wouldn't trade her for all the tea in China. She is my precious gift - the baby I thought I would never have. I struggled with fertility issues and ended up having to have an emergency hysterectomy when I was 23. I adopted a sibling group of three (Girls ages 8 and 6 and a boy age 4) twenty years ago next month. Raised them and watched them fly from the nest and then was presented with Miss Demi. She's been with me since she was 3 months old. Her adoption was final 3 years ago.

    So, do what feels right for you -- the rest of the world will just have to adjust!

    -- Jen

  4. Ha! How long would two gallons last you? My family's half the size of yours, and two gallons *just* lasts us a week.

  5. Jen, If you can get paid to do what you're obviously a natural at(blogging, I mean) not?
    Don't overanalyze it. Take the $$.


  6. I read your blog almost every day and believe me, the gripey griping is *fine* with me! I have 3 kids of my own and it kind of grounds me and keeps me a little bit saner knowing that other people go through the same thing with theirs. Mine are 7, 3 and 19months, and while they aren't triplets, I can still relate to a lot of what you write about, good and not so good.
    I say, don't worry about posting every day. Post because you want to. I have a blog (well, reallymore of a journal because I don't publicize it) that I mean to update with at least a little bit each day but something about the sounds of the keys ticking draws children to me, either to read over my shoiulder or just to climb all over me or remember that they had some pressing need that they completely forgot about until I started to type. Blogging at night after they've gone to bed, well, it's hard because I'm generally asleep by 10 and since the time change, I can't get them all to sleep before 9:30. Leaves me precious little time to do more necessary things like pack a lunchbox for the 7 yr old or maybe do the dishes so I don't have to wake up to 2 full sinks in the morning.
    Anyway, I guess my point is, I enjoy your blog; I think it's admirable that you update nearly every day given how much you have on your plate, and don't worry about pleasing *me* because if you enjoy writing it, I will enjoy reading it.

  7. hmmm- 2 gallons of chocolate milk.. I say go for it - lol.

    You might work your way up to a package of oreos too (or TJ's peanut butter cups).

    Seriously, just keep blogging whatever you do. I enjoy your exploits - makes me realize we're not so abnormal.

    btw - the SanDiego job is a no go.

  8. Your blog is for you; it's good therapy.

    It's good for my soul too :)

  9. I love reading your blog!! Thanks so much for sharing your stories and yourself!!

  10. I have read your blog a long time. YOU many times said the reason you blog is to let off the steam. It is an outlet for you. YOU blog because YOU want to. That is why you do it. :) I think you would blog if NOBODY read it. It is a way for you to releave the stress of the day. So... now ya no why ya blog! :D

    ~Helpful ~Cindy! :)

  11. I read you because you write so well, you are very funny, you have fantastic perspective on a lot of topics and I'm interested in knowing what it would have been like to have triplets.

    I'm a loyal person and have been reading for a long time. In my humble opinion, just keep doing what you are doing. I think it takes a PILE of work to make a blog uber popular--are you willing to spend all that time while you have little ones and work a full time job? I think it takes a LOT of sitting at a computer while your family lives without you...and are you still going to be the same person?

    I know a multi-millionaire who had a little girl while he and his wife were building up their business--he says he regrets that time lost with his daughter. When he and his wife were really established and comfortable, they had two more children and were able to spend more time than most parents with their younger kids. In the end, his wife died of breast cancer and he is very rich and very lonely, spending LOTS of time with his grandkids because he knows that's very important.

    I know I wrote a novel, but your kids will so appreciate this wonderful blog you kept while they were young. It's YOU. Don't change!

  12. Really? Because I think Dooce gripes a lot. Or used to - I haven't read her in a while. So I think that point goes right out the window.