Tuesday, December 08, 2009

there is only a dash of whining in this post

There are two reasons I have added comment moderation to my blog.

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The first reason is because I get a ton of spam, which I'd prefer to delete.

The second reason is because several times a week, I get some real zinger comments.

Every so often, I think about publishing them anyway, but then I opt against it because what good would come from publishing comments on my blog about how rotten I am?

I've had people write to tell me that I make their skin crawl because clearly I have no idea how to cherish my husband. I'm not really sure what that means. Or, how they would know? Clearly they didn't see me get Charlie a beer from the refrigerator one day last month. Or maybe it was last year? Whatever. I'm fairly certain I did something nice for him at least once in our 15 years of marriage.

I've had people leave me comments that I'm unappreciative of what I have and I'm going to burn in hell because I haven't taken the right steps on my path of Christianity. Perhaps I never should have written that I support gay rights and I have a difficult time accepting everything I read in the Bible? Jeepers, sometimes I'm convinced there are voices coming through my computer that hiss, "Heathen! Burn the witch!"

I've been told on countless occasions that I complain too much and dramatize everything and I don't enjoy my children and they never should have born to me. I've been told by several people how bad my blog has become. Apparently, it isn't as good as it once was and now that I'm asking for money repeatedly, people have lost interest and wow thank you so much for writing to tell me your thoughts. Although I'm not sure what I should do with that information?

Please. Tell me what I can do to make this blog a more enjoyable experience for you?

(No. Not really.)

See, I knew that I was losing readers because as I mentioned back in March, my statistics have really dropped. But you know what? I'm genuinely sorry if this sounds harsh, but I honestly don't care if you feel guilty when you come here and I honestly don't care if my blog disappoints you. Because this blog isn't about you. While I'm happy if you enjoy it, this blog is about my family and how we are navigating the amazing trip of life.

At some point - probably in January when I saw my friend Deana in the hospital and she told me that she had a 50% chance of surviving this year and I held her hand when she cried at the thought of leaving her two little boys without a mother - my priorities shifted a bit. And apparently, that's when my blog has turned in to ONE BIG AD for donations. Or so some people seem to think. (Go check out the comments on my last post if you don't believe me.)

Am I really asking for money repeatedly?

Is it that bad?

Tell me. I can handle the truth. Sometimes. If you say it really, really nicely.

For those that seem to think so, I guess it's a good thing that I couldn't find a FLASHING banner for my 3-Day walk because I would have put that up, instead. Who remembers when I turned my entire blog hot pink? That was fun. Until I started getting e-mails from people who told me how much they HATED it.

I'm (still) feeling rather passionate about this whole cancer thing because it is everywhere. And the thing that makes ME feel guilty is when I blow a fuse with the children for something childish that they did (the nerve!) and then I'll read a story about a family who just lost their preschooler to neuroblastoma. And although my children might be in bed asleep and the house is peacefully still, I will go in to their rooms and tightly hug their little bodies while crying my thanks to God that they are not only here, but that they are healthy.

I don't know why it's important for me to publicly share stories about the ups and downs (but mostly ups) of our parenthood and life and religion-seeking adventures. Maybe because it gives me great joy and a sense of satisfaction to write about something that I think will help people, whether by making them laugh ... think ... or perhaps be moved in to action.

But despite my best intentions, criticism can be really tough to handle and it seems that recently, I've been getting too much of it. Probably because I've been putting myself out there, way too much. Hence the reason I started a new blog. But the only post that is over there is the "very merry rant" post that I originally published here on Saturday.

Although, this one should probably be over there, too.

Oh, oh. Quick! Look!

An adorable child!

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Whew, that was close.

This post was starting to sound a little too whiny.

81 comments:

  1. OMG. You are totally cracking me up.

    I wrote a post about all the wonderful parks in Las Vegas and someone left me a comment that they would never take their dog to a dog park because their neighbor's dog got HERPES from another dog at a dog park.

    To which I told them that they shouldn't let their dog have SEX in a dog park without a CONDOM.

    You should just publish the shitty comments. Then we can laugh about them. Don't take this stuff so seriously. We are all insane.

    I'm not going to hell like you though, so I sleep like a baby, you heathen.

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  2. I am a rare commenter...more a lurker. I just had to tell you how much I appreciate your blog. I am a mother of twins with a total of 4 kids 4 and under and it's...well crazy. I love reading your blog, because on your good days it helps me remember and appreciate my good days more, and on your bad days it is nice to know that there is some one out there that has been there too. I appreciate your dedication to the things you think are important. It nudges me in the right direction for more actively supporting the causes near to my heart. I think you are a great mom/wife with a gift for writing(also you are an outstanding photographer). Don't let the whiners get you down!

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  3. well last time i checked this was your blog. Therefore you can say what ever you dain well want. If the people that are sending you comment on how you should do stuff well if they dont like it then thats tough for them huh

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  4. No criticism. None. At. All.

    Also? I added word verification to mine. I was getting spam comments and grew tired of deleting them, especially when one tenaciously came daily to leave a link back to something I didn't want up in the interim before I could get to it to take down. Eeeew.

    XO

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  5. All I can say is bah humbug to all the people who give you negative comments. :-(

    I was only thinking this morning on my way to work how inspiring you are and how incredible it is that despite everything you have going on in your everyday life, you are going out of your way to raise money for cancer charities and that you are genuinely trying to make a difference.

    I was also thinking that it is truly amazing that you sent me a pink bracelet, despite the fact I live in the UK! My son is truly enamoured with it and has decided he wants to wear it to school. I am worried he will lose it though so have hidden it for now! He also wanted to know who the picture was from and I think he wants to draw one for your triplets! ;-)

    By the way, I read your blog every day, even if I don't comment often and I do it through bloglines most of the time. You have to remember people like me who won't necessarily show up in your stats but are still reading and enjoying every post you make.

    Your posts about your walk made me want to book a flight over to the US and join you next year but sadly, with everything I have to balance, it isn't going to be possible. BUT I will continue to do what I can here in the UK. I don't think anyone really understands the need to fight cancer until you lose someone you love from it, so I hope the people who leave criticism on your blog about your fundraising efforts never have to eat their words because someone they love has been lost to cancer as if that ever happens, they WILL understand your need to try and help in any way you can.

    Anyways, this is turning into a bit of a novel but I just wanted to say how much I love reading your blog. :-) Sod the people who leave you negative comments, they are the kind of people you wouldn't get on with IRL anyway so just ignore them!

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  6. Jen,

    I feel compelled to comment. I LOVE your blog. I found it through babysteps and have been hooked ever since. I love the way you "tell it like it is". I read it every day before work and I tell everyone to read your blog because I think you are hysterical! I love the way you write and don't think you whine too much. You are a mom of four who has to work, take care of the house, take care of the kids, take care of others, and it can get ugly sometimes but hey, no one says the others have to read your blog, let alone comment. If they don't like it, don't read it! I read your other post and it was fine. I just wanted you to know that I for one LOVE your blog and think you should keep it just the way it is!
    Tracy

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  7. "Clearly they didn't see me get Charlie a beer from the refrigerator one day last month. Or maybe it was last year? Whatever"

    That is the best blog line ever! You are such a witty writer!

    I find that people are a lot more brave behind a computer screen than in real life, thus able to leave horrible comments on someone's blog. I always wonder why people read something they do not like. Anyway, I love your blog and have been reading for years. Keep up the whining!

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  8. I don't think your blog is whiny at all -- I always enjoy your posts. Your writing IS awesome, you make me think and laugh and you even inspire me at times.

    Plus, seeing pics of your beautiful family is always a perk too : )

    I say just keep being true to yourself!

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  9. Wow Jen it's amazing to me how cruel people can be with their comments but I guess that is the chance you or anyone else takes when they strip off the fluff and say what they really feel. God forbid you're honest about how you're doing, what's going on in your life and the thoughts that race through your mind. It's life and one minute everything makes sense and the next it's f'd up and we are crazy. You have four children under the age of 5 of course it isn't going to be giggles and hugs all day long and they will stretch your last ounce of patience and jeez it's okay to get upset with them how else are they going to learn not hurt people's feelings, how to behave, etc. You're normal as hell as far as I'm concerned. I'm sorry but I don't look at it as whining, it's you dealing with life and putting yourself out there to see if anyone else has any advice or help to offer. And the asking for donations, I either feel compelled to give or I don't and I don't judge you for asking. You are passionate about this cause, that's how I see it. I feel like I'm sucking up and I guess someone out there will feel the same way, I really don't care. I admire your guts, your courage and your honesty. Don't change.
    Denise.

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  10. I don't think my positive comment posted last time so I am going to try again. I have been only reading your blog for a little while now, but I related so much to you about how hard raising kids is and making these major life decisions that I have had to go back and reread your old posts. Your blog is my favorite b/c you sound like the thoughts going on in my head. You are honest and I can tell that you love your husband and kids despite how hard it can get at times. Ignore the bad and only listen to the good (unless the bad comes from a trusted source) I will be sad if I only read censored posts. Tracy

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  11. I feel like your blog has been the same since I started reading about 2 years ago.

    Very funny, truly inspiring, and honest. I TOTALLY agree with you that a blog should be for the person writing it. That is exactly why I like your blog- you are not writing to get more readers- you are being honest and that is very important to me. I hate the blogs who write to make everyone happy and just to get more readers.

    Keep it up!

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  12. I think you're great Jen. I've never donated to your fundraising efforts and I've never minded you asking either. It doesn't make me feel guilty. It makes me want to do more myself. And for that I owe you a thank you.
    I would think the only reason someone would be offended is if they aren't doing anything at all and they don't want to be confronted with it.
    I get so much out of your blog.
    It is clear you love your children and husband. Being a christian myself, I appreciate you are on a journey of discovering God. He will reveal Himself to those who seek him. It is not my job to tell you how or why you could have things wrong. I'm sure I still have plenty wrong. We're learning.
    You're doing great.
    Take care,
    Stacey McCastlain

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  13. Hey Jenn, i don't know what all those people are talking about, honestly. I'm from Australia and i have been reading your blog since you first began it. I can't wait for your next installments! I think you're an amazing person and are doing great things for your family and the general public. Don't stop what you're doing, you're great. =_

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  14. I've been reading your blog for ages and I love love love it!

    You are a talented writer, a great wife, fab mother and a real inspiration to all of us who sit at home counting the reasons why we can't get off our behinds and actually achieve something.

    You're quite right not to want to change for anyone and your genuine readers really wouldn't want you to!

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  15. “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.”- Dr. Suess

    susieg

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  16. People need to GET A FREAKIN LIFE!

    Gosh, I sure would HATE for you to use your voice on the internet - no matter how big or small it might be - to help raise money to fight the disease that has impacted the lives of most everyone I know. How DARE you?!

    I read your blog because I admire how much you love your husband and your kids - even if that's not always easy to do...

    And to the people who have rotten things to say.... I think you should recall something your mothers told you once upon a time: "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all."

    End rant.

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  17. Whats funny about this-I just got told that I TRASH my kids on my blog when I vent about the everyday stress I have with my twins. People seriously need to mind their own business. Until they have walked in your shoes, tell them to shove it.
    I love your blog, and I would hate it if you stopped writing in it.

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  18. I read your blog to know there are other mothers out there who face the same things I face- where should we live? am I doing a good job? these kids are driving me crazy!!

    I respect your drive to beat cancer and if that means fundraising or turing things pink or standing on your head while the kids run laps around you- GO FOR IT!

    You are a wonderful wife and mother who does what we all do- tries to make the best choices she can to be all that she was meant to be.

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  19. I love your blog. I love how real it is...we all go through conflicting emotions; you are the brave one that shares them with cyberspace. It's humorous, thoughtful, and real. And if the day comes that I don't like it anymore (unlikely), I won't read it anymore.
    But for now, I'll continue reading and forwarding to friends and family as long as you continue writing!
    Thanks for your blog!

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  20. People need to relax and follow the Golden Rule - if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.

    I personally love your blog. I think you are amazing and you help me in my day to day life by simply surviving. I figure if you can do what you do with four children, then I should be able to handle one little 5 year old girl.

    Keep doing what your doing and if they nay-sayers don't like, let them go eat cake. (or poo)

    Thanks for writing.
    JLD

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  21. I really enjoy reading your blog! I love your honesty and your enthusiasm. I have two boys, 4 and 2.5 and husband of 16 years, and I can so relate to your ups and downs. There are so many day to day decisions in life and it is hard to accomplish all the necessities and also make time to enjoy your husband and children. I love the pictures you share of your family. It looks like you have some fun times. The reality of life is that no matter how much we love our family, there will still be times where our emotions our up and down. But the love is always there. Thank you for sharing your life.

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  22. I had no idea, why do people bother to leave comments when itsnot about them anyway. If they dont' want to read dont' read or if a post isn't for them then skip it. I'm not sure why people get so into someone's blog. I for one love your blog, I love the stories and after having just one child and so wanting 2 I keep thinking about what had happend if one of the 5 IVF cycles worked and we had triplets or quads, I"m pretty sure my hair would have been pulled out, andhonestly of course you love your children and reality is my gosh they make you want to pull out your hair at times, I would think that with anymore then one you are lucky to not be wearing a wig. I love the liberal stories, well maybe thats because I support gay rights too, and bible stories to me are stories to teach lessons not literal although I don't even have the desire to go to church, it works for some people and not for others, I enjoy going outside and enjoying just being outside instead. If you want to whine on your blog its your blog anyway so who cares!

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  23. Cancer sucks. At least you are doing something about it. If people don't like it, they can leave.

    Parenting is often a pain in the butt. If you just wrote about the happy stuff and how wonderful the kids are all the time, I'd be worried about you and your wine consumption!

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  24. Do me a favor, Jen. Don't stop "whining" and don't stop repeatedly asking for money. Yesterday my cousin's wife...my cousin-in-law lost her 7 year battle with breast cancer leaving her husband, 13-year-old daughter and 11-year-old son. One of the first things that popped into my head after hearing this devastating news was I should fly to CA next year and walk with Jen.

    Do what you do for you and ignore the others. If you want to commiserate about crazy troll commenters you should read/email Heather at Dooce. She gets some doozies too.

    I'm going to leave you with a quote from my cousin who was writing in her fb page to update us on her treatment...

    "I'm grateful for every day and every person in my life and all any of us can do is fill every day with joy and keep moving forward..."

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  25. Amen, sister! Like you, I write my blog for me. It's my outlet, my kids' baby book, and a great way to keep far-flung family and friends in touch with our lives. I'm not in it for readers or revenue.

    So, no, I don't care what you think, and I will delete nasty comments.

    A while back I had someone arguing (in comments) that it's not free speech because I deleted her (not-so-nice) comments and only gave my opinion.

    HELLO! It's MY blog.

    Thanks for stopping by, but don't the door hit you on the way out.

    I do not feel guilty about the selfish nature of my blog and neither should you!

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  26. I have come to the conclusion that the public has totally lost the boundary of a) not judging b) if you have nothing nice to say say nothing at all.
    I blame American Idol.LOL Who the HELL are we to judge people who are doing something...... something mostly we have no balls to do ourselves.
    (I am sure you can expand this concept and make it beautifully written)

    I tell you if you want to get shocked outta of your boots on this topic. Read comments on public forums. People are INSANE. They are cruel, heartless and 1000% out of line. But getting away with it. I refuse to read them anymore.

    I love your blog, I do have one complaint though....... you are NOT keeping up with Michelle S!!
    Really that is the best I can come up with.

    I enjoy your family, you, and your lifestyle. You can say things in print that I feel but cant express. I thank you for that.

    Mean people suck!

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  27. Your blog is lovely. Honestly. We all whine about stuff and anyone who is ALWAYS happy and ALWAYS thankful and ALWAYS cheerful scares me. They're in denial.

    I have wanted to donate to your cancer run but being Canadian I didn't know if I could. I think the work you do is incredible and you are changing the world.

    Keep it up.

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  28. I love your blog...even with all the whining. It reminds me that I can do this whole parent of multiples thing and still be my own person. A lot of the things you mention on your blog are very relevant to my own life....religion, struggles with family, to move or not to move, to make the big changes or keep the status quo and family & friends struggling with cancer. Until I started reading your blog I had never in my life thought that *I* could do a 3 day walk while leaving twin toddlers at home. Reading about your experience has inspired me very much to try to do one too. Maybe I'll even get everything in order to join you in DC next year.....even though I've never met you and that might be kind of creepy in a blog stalker sort of way. Anyways, I love that you whine on your blog, because really, who doesn't whine sometimes. It makes you real. Life is tough no matter how you slice it. You've got an incredible husband and incredible kids...don't let the naysayers get you down. Don't feed the trolls :)

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  29. Jen, I have been a long time reader of your blog. I now have my own son, and continue to read simply because you are so inspiring. I am shocked that people leave comments trying to cut you down... I think this is more of a reflection of them and what is going on in their life than about you.

    I am so thankful for all your charity work. Although, I have not donated directly to your campaigns, I have donated much more generously to local cancer raising efforts (live in Vancouver, Canada). Reading your charity posts are so moving, and continues to motivate me to reflect on what I am doing to create change.

    Thank you for sharing your story. You are so amazing.

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  30. jen - the same way you've been cutting the clutter out of your life, so should you cut the criticism. you keep what you can use and get rid of what you don't need.

    yes, there were moments when i rolled my eyes at some things you wrote, but i understand that everyone goes through a period of having to make decisions. everyone is entitled to some self-doubt and undecisiveness.

    keep doing what you're doing and delete the clutter.

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  31. For the record, I love your blog...and I've been following it for about two years. I have twins who are a year younger than your triplets and find a lot of wisdom and humour from you; not to mention some fabulous writing. I like to know what's coming down the pike, developmentally-speaking, from your stories. Thank you very much for taking the time to share things that I really enjoy reading and never fail to make me feel better. I don't mind your whining, it makes me feel more human. Also, thanks for the tips on Keen sandals and Trader Joe's (I live in Canada and don't often get down to the States, but have just tried some Candy Cane Jo Jo's....yum). I think it's great that you are raising money for cancer...people complain about that?
    Sue

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  32. Jen,
    I have been enjoying your blog for quite some time. (First time caller, long time listener) I have never posted a comment before, but after reading your post this morning I really feel inclined to. First off let me say that although we have never met, I believe that you are a wonderful mother to your children and a loving wife to your husband. I have five children, two that are mine and three that are my husbands, and they have all lived with us. Now the oldest two are grown, and only have three kids in the house has made life much easier. It has brought me great pleasure to read all that you are going through raising your own children. I identify greatly with the state of your house, never having enough time to clean, let alone time for yourself. My life mirrors yours in many ways, and it gives my comfort knowing that I am not alone. What some people may view as "whining" is really an opportunity to express your frustrations freely. I applaud you for being honest with your feelings, and frustrations. As for those that feel you are seeking money too frequently, they must forget the purpose behind your requests. Or perhaps they have never experienced the hopelessness of watching someone they love be taken away by cancer. When my mother-in-law was diagnosed with terminal cancer after beating it once, that is how I felt. But you Jen, you don't just talk about doing something, you make it happen! It makes my proud knowing that there is someone out there fighting to make a difference, one donation at a time. I am so sorry that people have said things to you that have hurt your feelings. Especially the particularly hateful ones that have questioned your devotion to God. People will try to push their beliefs off on you; they see it as their place to save your immortal soul. What they fail to realize is that God knows your heart. He knows that you are a good and that you have love for him, and that you know him. Nothing else matters, despite what Sally Two-Cents has to say. In closing I would like to say thank you for allowing me a glimpse into the inter workings of your family. Thank you for making me laugh, and for making me cry. Most importantly thank you for letting me see that I am not alone.

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  33. I for one and glad to be able to be a part of your blog and read about your everyday struggles and successes. It makes life seem a little bit more normal for all of us too. I love reading your stories and believe that any of the negative posts you have just show that you too are human. You're not perfect just like the rest of us. I love your blog just the way it is. I would be honored to be able to continue to be a part of your blog. Thanks for putting it out there for everyone no matter how hard or dirty it is.
    Thanks,
    Cheri

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  34. Your blog is awesome! Listen to yourself and try to ignore those who don't know how to keep quiet.
    You are a great Mom and you have a wonderful family. Keep up the good work.

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  35. Ignore them! You write about what's important to you.

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  36. I could never, ever blog precisely for the reason you mentioned -- the mean things people write to and about you and other bloggers (I mostly read "mommy blogs"). I don't know why people feel the need to be so negative -- if you don't like the blog or the blogger, don't read it! It's so mean-spirited and judgmental -- and really, it's none of anyone's business what or how you write on your own blog; granted, you are publishing it for a wide range of readers, but I don't think you or anyone deserves to be criticized so harshly. I hope you continue to write about ALL of your experiences, whiny and non-whiny. Honesty is far more compelling to read about than perfection. Good luck and keep up the good work :)

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  37. I love your blog! And I love that you stand up for what you believe and are assertive in your call to action to the rest of us- whether it's financial contribution or getting of the couch and doing something. We SHOULD have people remind us that the fight against cancer is ugly, and real, and goes on every day. And if people don't want to donate, then they shouldn't donate. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't ask. In my opinion anyway. And as a new mom, I love both your encouraging stories about your kids and reading about your frustrations- they make me feel more normal! :)
    -Laurie Garrett

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  38. Ef- them! If you were asking for money for yourself then I would understand! You are asking people who were deep down going to donate to some charity anyways (like me) but didn't know which one to give to this year. Thanks for doing all you do! I am proud of you!
    ps - thanks for the adorable drawings from your kids! We loved them!!!! - Especially the 3-legged horse!

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  39. I'm sorry but the NERVE of people to complain that you raise money for cancer research. SERIOUSLY?? Are they the ONE person in the ENTIRE world who've never lost someone to cancer?! ARGH!!!

    Bring back the whine. It makes us feel like we're all in it together. But run your blog how you like. Maybe you've lost readers but you've gained some as well, I haven't been here THAT long.

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  40. You should see some of MY comments about how awful we Eskimo's are to be killing and hurting innocent animals for FOOD AND CLOTHING. Why, oh why can't we just SHOP AT OLD NAVY!? (P.S. Old Navy ain't gonna keep me warm in 79 degrees below zero temperatures!)

    Yeah. I always end up finding the bastards who want to spill paint on my mukluks, and I like some drama, so we have ongoing email fights about how retarded they are, and how neanderthal I am.

    I always win. :)

    Anyway, I don't think its one big add. When you're adamant about something and it helps your heart, you talk about it. People have a choice to read it or not. If they want to, they will, if not, oh well.

    I used to allow anyone to post whatever they wanted and just laugh at the comments, until someone posted something about my 12 year old son, being a KILLER and he should go to hell. The proverbial line was crossed. So I filed charges of assault against a child. :) Seriously. :)

    Yay for COMMENT MODERATION! Especially when we live in a world full of dumbasses!

    Your friendly, and ever so carnivorous ESKIMO up north!

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  41. Car.ol Stur.za12/8/09, 12:42 PM

    I love your blog! It is the FIRST one I go to when I sit down to check up on the blog world. You are a terrific, funny, and real writer. Please don't stop; and I'd really love to know how how to donate to breast cancer and subscribe to your other blog. (Both my sister and sister-in-law are breast cancer survivors).

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  42. I live in San Diego too. I love your blog and I think you are an amazing person and everyone else, can well, that's besides the point. You are the epitome of what a Christen should be, and what most claim to be. I do not affiliate with any religion, I suppose I am agnostic. But I know that you have a beautiful family and that you are truly blessed. I also think it is beautiful you support gay rights. I will continue to read your blog and I am sure it will continue to make me smile.

    Much love,
    Reilly

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  43. I've been following your blog for awhile..my guilty pleasure :>)
    I've loved that you can put your thoughts and emotions through your blog. I'm quite jealous that you're such a good writer.
    Don't worry about the negative inputs...they don't have anything better to do than put somebody else down so that they can feel better about themselves or just feel justify about what they think is right. you rock!!

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  44. I've follow your blog for awhile now..my guilty pleasure :>) I loved that you can put your thoughts and emotions onto your blog. I'm quite jealous that you're such a good writer.
    Don't worry about the negative inputs...they're just from people who don't have anything better to do than put others down so that they can feel better about themselves or to justify what they think is right.
    You rock.
    I look toward to reading your blogs.

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  45. I know criticism is hard to read and handle. I HATE being criticized. But I just read through all your comments on your previous post and the VAST majority of us agree with your writing and feel a connection to you because you tell life like it is. There will always be critics. My mom always said that the more critics you have, the more important your work must be. Your work IS important. You are a mother first and foremost, a wife, a volunteer, a friend, a teacher, a church goer, an employee, a fighter of cancer. There will always be people that fight a good thing. Simplify as you need to, but please don't believe your critics.

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  46. I am delurking for a moment to tell you what a joy your blog has been for me. I don't know when I began reading but I think it was on your cross country road trip last summer and I have been hooked since. You make me laugh and cry and I have so enjoyed seeing your children grow up - kids I will never meet.

    I am an attorney with a practice in Michigan, but that is not my frist career. I have worked at the University of Michigan for 15 years doing cancer research. You inspire me to keep people pushing to find better treatments to a horrible disease. It is a career I will be leaving soon, and I am saddened to leave it while excited for the future.

    I just wanted to take the time to thank you and let you know that I appreciate your blog, your stories and your enthusiam.

    Sincerely,
    Sonja Markwart

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  47. I love your blog. You're honest and funny, not to mention well-written, and it's appreciated by this reader.

    I'm sorry you're getting nasty comments - it's a sad Internet fact that people think they can spew nastiness from behind the mask of anonymity. There are a few bloggers out there I truly believe bring it on themselves, and you're certainly not one of them.

    I would also mention that as your kids get older, they're not gonna be as interesting. Sad, I know, but blog readers like to read about very young kids, and your little trips are no longer very little. Think about it - forums, chat groups, even IRL play groups. When does the conversation start to go stale and the group start to die out? It's the same for blogs.

    So I don't think you're doing anything "wrong", no matter the naysayers. I think you're just transitioning out of a period when most readers would find your kids "interesting."

    HTH and (((HUGS)))!

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  48. It's your blog. Let it say what you need it to say. I utterly admire you for your efforts to raise money for cancer, while working full time in a job you are less than sure is where you want to be and bringing up 4 children.

    I find your life fascinating, partly because while we are supposedly all part of the west, or the first world, or the leaders of civilisation, your version of normal is a million miles away from mine, even though I have a degree, work full time and have 3 children (not 4, phew, that would be insanity!). I love to read your opinions and see what you do with your kids!! And waiting to see what you'll do about moving......

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  49. I'm just a random person that wandered by one day and stopped to read about your family, and I have never commented before - but I wanted to say how interesting it is that some people have the nerve to tell you what to write on your own blog. For Pete's sake! Don't read it if you don't like it!

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  50. Ignore the haters - I think its great that you are unfiltered. We all have our ups and downs in life and if we can't share (commiserate) what's the point?

    You ROCK. Keep going.

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  51. I am a lurker, but I just want to say I love reading your blog, rants and all. It makes it real, people are not happy all the time plain and simple. And your desire to help cancer is great, not annoying.

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  52. Oh! Hog Wash on those that critize! (unless it's your Mother OR MY MOTHER!!!! of course) and Even though "He" throws rose petals at your feet before you take each and every step... Charlie is the Lucky One!! :-) So keep pluggin away at the "c" battle way to many of us have been affected.

    Sweet picture of Will. Love, Marg.

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  53. Well, I still like your blog. I even like the whining - it makes me feel better about MY whining.

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  54. The very first blog post of yours I read was when you were pregnant with Henry and you were taking a picture of your reflection while holding the triplets. I knew at that moment that I would love this blog. I may not comment often, but I am here always excited to see that you have written a new post. You have a remarkable ability to write about the hardships of your life without coming off whiny. That's why I like your writing so much.

    I think the ones who say you complain a lot are not reading the parts where you reflect on your thoughts and try to figure out a way to deal with everything or at the very least, you say how thankful you are for some part of your life.

    I wish I had a large sum of money to donate because I sure will miss the posts where you write as if everything is going straight to hell, because it's in those posts, you show how human you are and teach, through your writing, how to navigate a sticky situation. If you choose to keep your other blog, then I'm fine with that, but I will always be reading here.

    I am amazed with everything you do. You are one of the busiest moms I know and give me, and I'm sure many others, inspiration.

    Also, screw the critics.

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  55. Whew! Didn't think of it before, but I can totally see "the haters" dissing you! : ) For YEARS several stay-at-home family members really said harsh things about me working. I've worked full time, stayed at home, and now I work part-time (although my volunteer hours are thru the roof and I might as well be working full-time). I was the exact same mom who forgot about bringing bagged lunches for field trips when I worked as when I stayed at home full-time. Those people who have time to criticize need to get a life. I have a really hard time with SOME stay at home moms. They are the first to criticize, the last to help out and have major self entitlement issues. (notice I just said some - not all) I don't understand why there is such a divide among women in this day and age.

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  56. Jenny, you are fantastic! You have such a heart and it is in the right place. You are doing a wonderful job of bringing people's attention to the fight to cure Cancer, the most dreaded disease in the world. You are so right to say if people don't like what your trying to do, tell them to find their own cause, like playing with play dough. Don't get discouraged your just great.

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  57. DON't START A 2ND BLOG ... i have NO idea where i am going to find the time to read that as well!!! I pawn the baby off to my hubby and sneak into the "bathroom" to see if you've written ANYTHING, as soon as we come through the door at the end of the day Jen! I have been following your blog for years now and love reading it, even the so-called "whiny" posts! Because, let's be honest, I don't know anyone else who writes as well and as FUNNY as you do ... plus, an added bonus is the feeling that there are others going through the same things in life ... so, please, please, pretty please keep on writing!!! And at the end of the day, both you AND your kids will cherish the memories you've been able to document so well!!!

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  58. I love your blog! I love that you are HONEST about LIFE which, despite what some people would like to believe, simply ISN'T always gummy bears and gum drops.

    I think it takes a more courageous person to admit in an public outlet that they have questions about their spirituality and their relationship with God and that maybe they aren't right where they want to be YET.

    I also think that anyone who is self-righteous enough to criticize another's relationship with God is a hypocrite and a liar. What's that thing about people living in glass houses???

    I hope you don't quit writing. If you move I'll just follow you on over. (wow did that sound creepy or what?!) Keep bringing on the honesty. It's refreshing.

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  59. Girl, you said it. This blog (or the other you just started) is for you. I love coming to "visit" and love your writing style. Hope you continue your journey here but I get it. I really do. And I love that you are passionate about your cause. Just my two pennies.

    -D

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  60. Hi Jen!

    I just wanted to say that I really enjoy reading your blog. You are real... a real mom... a real coworker... a real wife... and a real HUMAN!

    Pish Posh on the people who are judging you so poorly. (Ok.. I am a cheerleading coach at a local University and my cheerleaders say "Pish Posh" that all the time... I am totally too old to say it... but it applies here without the use of cuss words!)

    I was sad to see that you made your "ranting" blog private because while I do envy your life in California (I live in the midwest) I in no way think you are not grateful for what you have... you have obviously worked hard for the life you have. I just think you are real, and that is what keeps me coming back. :)

    I have been reading your blog for well over 2 years and enjoy seeing the ups and downs your family has continually overcame and it gives me hope that I too can handle the daily grind of life with as much integrity as you.

    Please continue to keep it real and not fake like some of the other "mommy blogs" out there.

    -Jessica

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  61. I've been reading your blog for sometime, learning of it since I share the infertility road. I love your blog and more so now that you have a cause behind you and purpose in what you do. I find your posts so honest and heartfelt and amazing. I'm awed that you have the energy to walk for 3 days while working full time, taking care of triplets and a toddler, and handling life in general. I think you are doing a great job and I admire the relationship you seem to have with your husband. You'll always find people who have nothing but negative things to say and who don't agree with your decisions but I got to tell you, you are damn impressive.

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  62. I, for one, have been reading your blog every day ever since I found it. Your cause is worthy and your posts are honest, insightful and interesting. It's insufferable that people feel that it's their right to criticize you for your personal thoughts that you generously share with people. I don't know you, but I've been inspired on countless occasions so far. Please just keep on telling us what's in your heart. Otherwise, what's the point of blogging? Certainly not to conform to what everyone else is saying or wants you to say.

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  63. As a mom of 2 yr old triplet girls, I am happy to hear your rants. It makes me feel like I'm not alone in my own situation. I have also been inspired by your ability to raise money & walk for cancer research. How you can balance everything is beyond me. But like your last post, I guess you get overwhelmed too. This blog is AMAZING just like its title. - KThompson

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  64. Anyone who complains or has negative things to say about your blog need just go elsewhere!!!

    I for one truly enjoy your blog and whether you are writing about a good day or a troublesome one, it is true life and we all go through it - you just have an amazing way of writing about it!

    Don't let a few bad apple spoil the bunch because I'd be willing to guarantee you have TONS more readers out here in cyber-world who love your blog then the bad ones who choose to project their negativity on to you!

    Keep up the awesome work!!!

    ~ Amy

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  65. Not whiny - real. If people don't like real then tough on them. Life is not always joy and cheer at least for anyone I know.

    Everyone is allowed to whine, whenever and where ever they want. Especially on their own blog!

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  66. You aren't whiney - you are my therapist! I need to hear you rant so that I don't need to!!! You are human ... and I feel sad for you that people feel it's ok to be so rude and negative to you. Haven't their mothers told them "if you don't have anything nice to say - DON'T SAY ANYTHING AT ALL!" And if you are going to hell, I'll save you a big table ... I'll surely be there :)

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  67. If they don't like it, then they don't have to read it! You are on my list of blogs I check daily, and I get so disappointed when there isn't a new post! So I had to make a google account just to let you know! Keep up the good work

    Oh yeah, I loved the pink blog ;)

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  68. Jen
    I have been reading you blog for a long while, although I only comment occastionally and
    a) you and your family are adorable and I feel uplifted when I come and see the thoughtful parenting you do
    b) I am a 18 year cancer survivor and applaud your efforts. A lot of good is done, and needs to be continued.
    c) "why read if you don't like it, just go somewhere else" is my philosphy. Why does someone feel the right to critize? I have only gotten a few mean comments over the years and I just shrug them off but I wonder what is the motivation?

    Happy Holiday!

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  69. Jen - people in general are ignorant and some just love negativity - they thrive on it. If they don't like what you have to say then why do they come to your blog and read? Obviously something draws them here. I log onto the Boston papers daily just to read the terrible things that people comment about - makes me feel that I am normal and way better than the idiots who comment about anything and everything! You would not believe this morning already - Tom Brady and Gisele had their baby yesterday - how wonderful right? NOT here - the comment section is already filled with negative comments about them! It's awful - I don't comment because I think thats what these freaks want - so continue blogging away - it's your blog and it's gonna be YOUR way!

    Bridget :)

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  70. I rarely comment. However, I've been reading here for years. I read way back when the triplets were babies. Heck, I have stopped blogging for 18 months and then come back to it (for nearly that long again) and still managed to re-track down your blog.

    There will always be haters. Shrug. I say, delete. Don't give them the power to upset you. (easier said than done, I know)

    Anyway, I had no real point, except this: keep blogging for you.

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  71. I have a found a mother, who like me, has ups and downs with work, husband and kids. It's nice to know we all question what we are doing and where we are headed.

    You don't ask for money too much. You believe in the cause, you never told anyone if they wanted to see a post, they had to send money... although, that may work.

    It's your life, your blog. Live and write it like it is.

    I am glad you have found a church and still question what is written/preached. I still haven't found a church I want to take my child to and he'll be 4 this weekend. Oops.

    The bible is a guide, that's all. And if all murderers, pedophiles, and Bernie Madoff have to do is ask for forgiveness to be saved. I think you can take worring about going to hell off your plate.

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  72. Oh, my word. I am so sorry that you can apparently not be passionate about something like CANCER without people thinking you're all after their money. How ridiculous. I'm sorry you have to put up with rude comments. And also, we all have our days - cherishing our husbands and children, in the midst of our busyness and their frustrating ways always comes easier when we hear of someone else's loss, but it's not about guilt. We can move on and make the next day better.

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  73. I don't know you, i don't have kids yet because I'm still a student, i don't live in california but in Switzerland and I don't even know how I've found your blog..... 2 years ago! But what i know is that ever since, I've read every single post of your blog (and life) and it was always with a great pleasure. I don't see the point of leaving nasty comments , if i don't like the articles, then I don't read them anymore and that's all. And you have the right to express all of your feelings on your blog because it's YOUR blog, not theirs.
    Please keep writing!
    Maud

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  74. Jen -- I love your blog and your famiy. Don't change! The cancer 'stuff' was written from the heart, not in a pushy way. You are always honest and real about your adventures. :) thank you for sharing... don't stop!

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  75. Hi Jen-I am delurking temporarily. I have no idea when or exactly how I stumbled accross your blog, but I really enjoy reading it. You are so witty in so many of your posts, and inspirational in others.

    I have juts completed my PhD and as i enter the workforce the work/children (which I have none of, yet) questions lingers. After all this work will I want to give it all up?

    I see quite a bit of my personality in you (expecially the tendency to take on too much) and I can also see myself in the quandry of wanting to spend time with my children instead of working.

    I love reading your posts because they are real. You sounf like the ultimate working mother, and more importanly-you tell us that it is HARD! and you are TORN! I don't think I would still be reading so often if it was all sweetness and light (though I'm sure you'd still be witty and the children still super cute).

    Your blog, you post what you want. Whine, moan, tell us how you are annoyed you can't quit your job. Keep it real :)

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  76. Another Aussie who thinks you're fabulous Jenn! Your honesty and passion inspire me. I started reading your blog when I was pregnant last year and am well and truly hooked.

    Ignore the vindictive buggers who shoot nasty comments your way, life is too short to take on other people's negativity.

    There are a whole lot of people who love reading about your adventures, it's uplifting and funny and just plain wonderful!!!

    xx Em

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  77. Thomas is talkin now:) He is seven months old now:( Thanks for the visit the other day. It made my day!
    BTW I had some wine tonight ......bad morman girl and i havent felt this good in a long time. I am not tipsy or drunk but I do feel so much better. Oh crap this could become a habit:)

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  78. I might not agree with everything you write on this blog, but this is YOUR blog andthnaks goodness a free country. Life is about ups and downs, good and bad, sorrow and joy and we should all embrace it to its fullest.

    Of course, wine and chocolate with it will taste a lot better!

    You are doing and amazing job and I always come here for a little pick me up hummor:)

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  79. My advice?

    Stick with what you said here:

    "I honestly don't care if you feel guilty when you come here and I honestly don't care if my blog disappoints you. Because this blog isn't about you. While I'm happy if you enjoy it, this blog is about my family and how we are navigating the amazing trip of life."

    And DON'T EVEN APOLOGIZE.

    This is your spot to say what you damn well please. If we don't like it we can stop reading. People who send nasty comments are intentionally trying to get to you, as I'm sure you already know. Ignore them.

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  80. Your blog inspires me.

    Thank you for writing. I hope you continue.

    - a 16 year old reader.

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  81. I wonder what the negative people are doing whilst your raising awareness of the largest killer in the world? (not sure about exact data but I am sure people would agree with me that cancer is one of our biggest killers) I wonder if the negative people who claim 'your always asking for money' would turn down life saving technology for their loved one that your fundraising made possible. People attack you in this way as they feel threatened by all you and your family acheive. When I started reading your blog I felt like an underachiever. I also have a large family (5 children & 1 husband) and it is hard to do everything but you show us tis about prioritising. Last year my dad was diagnosed with multiple myleoma. He was going to have a stem cell transplant and go on to live a full life (7-10yrs)but on christmas eve he was admitted to hospital with pnemonia. On jan 3 he died aged 60 leavind behind a wife, 4 kids and 8 grandchildren. Dont ever stop doing what your doing. I can feel you love and support all the way in Australia and it was you and your blog that got me through some of my darkest days. I am sure I am not the only one your doing great things for.
    Thank You
    Alison in Australia

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