03 November, 2011

Billy Bag, The Good Birds Club, and Why I Blog

This bag hangs in my sewing room, its name is Billy. It was a gift from a friend, a blogging friend; one who was unknown to me, in real life before I blogged. Through the years we've shared stories and small gifts, we've prayed for each other through difficult situations and celebrated together the births of grandchildren, weddings, and good news of every variety. We've sewed for each other, and together for people unknown to us except through the wonderful world of Blogger. We became friends, blogging friends, and life was good.

Yesterday Gregory came to play for the day. We watched Sesame Street together. I became interested in the show when Big Bird received an invitation to join a particular club: "The Good Birds Club". Big Bird was excited to be invited and wanted, so very desperately, to become a member; but, he soon found out, that the invitation came with conditions. To be a "Good Bird" he needed to change his appearance and his voice, he was required to become someone other than who he was. This lesson for the viewer was about the power and the effects of bullying; one that can't be learned too early or communicated too often. In the end, Big Bird understood, through his real friends, the value of being exactly who he is, and how being genuine and loving himself was his TRUE gift to others.

There's been a buzz among bloggers lately concerning the "why" of blogging. I know why I blog and I make no apologies for my posts not appealing to all of the people all of the time. My blog contains posts about me and my life, a LOT of that life is consumed with quilting and, hence, there is much quilt and sewing related content, but that's not ALL that this blog is about anymore than that is ALL that I am about. I love my family, home, my dog, nature, hiking, the outdoors, technology, opinions, humor, music, travel, food and entertainment; I post about those things here too. My faith is fundamental to who I am; yes, I will post about my church and share my faith through this blog. I cherish my friends, both real (face-to-face) and the blogger variety, their friendships are all genuine. My blog is a true reflection of who I am, I don't try to present myself as someone else or post about what's new and trendy simply to draw more readers; to be honest, I wouldn't know how. I don't choose to advertise for compensation on my blog but, then, I don't make my living here, either. I respect the choice of those who carry ads on their sidebars and I understand that if they're selling books, services and products why this would be a sound choice and a perfect venue for them. I purchase those books and products and am happy to know where I can find what I need when I need it. There's a great big blogosphere here and there's room for all of us to exist in our own comfy little niches. I don't blog to live, nor do I live to blog; but I do LOVE to blog and I will continue to do so when I have something of interest to share through a post. I have lots more to say than I ever thought possible when my blogging journey began back in July of 2006. (Those of you who know me, in real life, won't find that hard to believe.) I love to talk, I adore story telling and I can't help but share my life... it's all good, you know! What started off as a few essays and a little quilty 'show and tell' became so much more. Once I discovered that more than just me sharing with you, there was real life give and take. There were opportunities through blogging that enabled us to join forces and truly share. The ripple effect of lives touched through friendships made here, was, and continues to be, truly amazing! Blogging is not a burden for me, but rather, a blessing. I'm happy when you stop by and I appreciate your comments, but I certainly don't expect them and I understand why many of you are questioning how to best use your time right now and may be considering abandoning your blogs altogether. I have taken one extended blogger break and many shorter "time outs" over the course of the last five years, maybe that's an alternative to consider. In any case, if you can't come up with a reason to continue blogging, or if you find yourself blogging out of a sense of obligation, remember Big Bird and what he learned, you need to be true to YOU. What it all comes down to is this: if your blog is good enough for you, then it's good enough.

Back to the Billy bag (above), and what it represents. It was given to me by Nancy, who blogs from Near Philadelphia. We met, for real, this past summer. She made this bag especially for me from her beloved William Morris fabrics (hence the name, Billy), whenever I use this bag I think of Nancy and how very special she is. She knows me for who I am, we became old friends before we'd even met! We started out as blogging friends, then became real life friends; we have hugged, and the circle expands. That, my friends, is why I blog.

Life is Good...
and through blogging
it is even better!

16 comments:

paula, the quilter said...

Wonderful post, thank you.

Janet said...

Thank you for this post! You've put into words what I wish I could say many times. Sometimes I wonder why I continue to blog and hesitate to put a post together because I don't feel I have anything to say that would be of interest to anyone. This comes as a good reminder that I need to do this just for me. I would love to "open up" a bit more but that fear of wondering what people would think is frightening. Thanks for writing this! And I am honored to have you as a bloggy friend!

Becky G said...

Sweet! Before I had entered the blogging world, I didn't realize how community oriented blogging is... I suppose I imagined it would feel sterile, but of course we are all just folks, and folks build communities.
I love your blog; I find it uplifting & inspirational.... Thanks for sharing it with us! B

Nane said...

You got me started!

Kristy said...

Well said! I think you have done well at expressing what many are try to say. You blog because you want to and it is a reflection of you. Thanks for the story about Big Bird. Life is way more simple than we make it. Keep being you because that is why I read your blog. You do have very cute grandchildren. I loved the 2 pictures of your son and grandson. That was special. Thanks for sharing- Kristy

Janet O. said...

As soon as I saw the bag I wondered if it was the one Nancy gave you. Like her, you are a woman of great wisdom and I thoroughly enjoy your posts, whatever their subject may be.
I have to say, I was taken by surprise with the recent posts by Bonnie, Nancy and now you--there are probably more to come. Didn't know there was such an undercurrent of contention or dissatisfaction in the land of my favorite "quilt" blogs. I'll just blog on in my happy, oblivious way, I guess. : )

regan said...

I enjoy your blog so much. Thanks for all your kind words.

Life IS good!

Nancy, Near Philadelphia said...

:-) xx

Marilyn said...

I have been reading your blog for quite a while
and your true self always shines through in
your posts. Your faith, love of family and
all the truly important things in life are what
I enjoy most. Love the quilt for Gregory, the
love just pops out that creation.

LizA. said...

I agree completely but never could have stated it as eloquently as both you and Nancy have done.

Quiltdivajulie said...

Big Bird has such a lesson to share ... being yourself is priceless. Your blog is just such a gift for the rest of us. Thank you for being who you are and for sharing yourself with us.

Grammasheri said...

I enjoy reading your blogs precisely BECAUSE the real you shows through. I'm still picking my way through blogland and am still tentative about what I write. Hopefully, someday soon, I can be as real as you.
Please continue to let your light shine.

quiltmom said...

Sometimes I do wonder about why I continue to blog, Debbie, but most of the time, I know that it is one of the ways in which I feel connected to other quilters. It took me a long time to jump into the blogging fray.
I didn't think I had much to say that others would be interested in- my husband who also blogs (his is a hockey blog that he writes for our local paper) encouraged me to write and so it began.
It is an interesting process and I have enjoyed having the on line blogging journal. I do not post as regularly as some - life gets in the way sometimes..
Like you, I believe that one should write about the things wants to write about- share what one is comfortable sharing and have ads or not have ads. Its not my job to be the blogging police and judge others on what they are writing in their blogs. People have the choice to read or not to read. I have never understood those who visit other blogs just to dump all over the writer or leave a nasty comment.
As for your blog, I always enjoy coming to visit and see what your doing and how life is treating you. For me its the connections I make with others that makes me want to return for another visit. Its like dropping in for a daily cup of tea and conversation.. Very nice post- love the big Bird story.
Life is indeed good...
Warmest regards,
Anna

Tanya said...

I haven't taken any time offs but I do sometimes feel the pressure of answering comments or going blog visiting. Still, blogging sometimes straightens out my thoughts about things and I do love to write. I've missed you when you disappear for a week or so to get things done and am always happy to see you again.

JCnNC said...

I love who you are and why you are and what you are - true to yourself and your faith. What you have described is certainly how I view my blog - My health issues for the last few weeks have kept me from blogging very much, but not from visiting my friends who have lifted me up with their prayers and strength and a chuckle or two. I appreciate you - and love having you in my daily life. Judy C

Carrie P. said...

I enjoyed this post and glad you blog for yourself and others. You do what makes you happy and that is a good thing. I did go through a spell of guilt when I didn't do a post when I first started blogging but then I had to remind myself why I blog. It is my journey and I like others to share it with me. thanks!