On boring blogging: a muse


Some dangerous things in the world of botany are prickly: castor bean pods

I’m kind of going through the push-pull of blog direction that I know happens every year at this time if one writes a mostly gardening blog. I have friends from my past life (my city, pre-farm life) who drop in and read this blog and are bored silly…and admit it to me. So hmm, I think: should I write more personal information here, as that’s what they’re looking for, fully knowing they care not for my lovely greenhouse’s contents? Or should I slog on, bragging about the greenhouse (as it IS the only place things’re happening this time of year) and thus annoy the purely on-line friends who begin to think I am just all-greenhouse, all the time? Or what?

It’s just that somnambulent time of year for a gardener. I kind of go through my days dreaming green thoughts: I look out the window and it’s only white that I see, white and maybe a blue but mostly a gray sky. I think about writing about food, I think about writing about family, but both these things seem so personal and I guess I am just not too comfortable sharing “that side” of my life. Not that I don’t admire and enjoy blogs who do: in the main, that’s what’s on my blogroll.

So I readily admit that it’s going to be chickens, seeds and greenhouse for a while yet, until I get inspired (or more comfortable) otherwise. I do need to tell you about our Slow Snack; I should tell you about my co-op finds and friends; I should tell you about some new things I have discovered with bread-baking. I could trumpet my environmental bona fides and tell you about the initiatives we’ve implemented here on the homestead. But I know I disappoint my non-gardening friends. Dang, I don’t even talk about architecture here, and only occasionally about art, and nearly never about our daughter. Those things ARE my life, frankly, and my gardening and chicken-ranching are the supports of my life; the windbracing, as it were, to a whole and fruitful existence. And they might be boring to some, but they’re important…to me. And they’re important enough that it’s what I choose to blog about, to the exclusion of almost all else.

Hmm. Old friends? Just pick up the phone, or drop me an email, okay? You’ll find out a lot more about me that way.

16 responses to “On boring blogging: a muse

  1. “Those things ARE my life, frankly, and my gardening and chicken-ranching are the supports of my life; ”

    Personally, I believe a blog is whatever you are moved to write about. I’ve found that unless I’m inspired, I can’t write. That’s why I go for days sometimes without posting anything. Better not force it, I think. If I’m not feeling it, nobody else will either.

    I think you have to decide what your motivation is for your blog. Are you doing this because you want to write about things that interest you or because you want people to read it? (And you can choose both!) If you’re inspired to write about chickens and gardening – that’s what you should write about. I’ll certainly read it! 🙂 Blogging for me is the journaling I’ve never been able to keep up with. I also love to take photos, so the blog-thing is the perfect medium for me.

    I really enjoy reading your blog. Please don’t stop. 🙂

  2. While I am a lurker, and not even a “new friend” yet, I love the gardening posts!

    I also live not-too-far-away in Jackson county, and love that I can watch and learn from someone who is doing what I would like to do, near-by.

    I have a similar take on blogging. I will put the stuff that interests me up, but if you really want the nitty-gritty family news, deep thoughts, and political views, there are several 2-way communication options available.

  3. Well, I propose a topic, but I can understand if you think it’s too far out. I’m interested in your chickens for meat, and wonder if you’d ever blog about processing the birds. In an arm’s-length way, I guess.
    Sending you a California hug.

  4. Hi Farmgirl: Mostly, I’m motivated to teach, so that’s why I blather on about gardening and chickens and the like. But I so hear you on the need to feel inspired! Maybe that’s just my problem now, I’m really just uninspired.

    Hello TS: Glad you de-lurked! I’m always happy to hear from other Michiganders. And I’m glad to hear you seconded my feelings about the rest of your life’s nitty-gritty details. I really think the blog would be very boring if all I did was relay what happens in the rest of my life.

    CC: Hoo boy, have you stepped into a big one! Yes, as far as the year’s project list–slash–blog posting topics go, meat chicken rearing and butchery is a-gonna be a big one. (I won’t be too gross about it, though; it’s not quite my style.) Hugs back! Feeling low today so I needed a good hug….

  5. I’ll have to skip the chicken slaughter days.

  6. Oh!Oh!

    “I do need to tell you about our Slow Snack; I should tell you about my co-op finds and friends; I should tell you about some new things I have discovered with bread-baking. I could trumpet my environmental bona fides and tell you about the initiatives we’ve implemented here on the homestead.”

    These are the things I want to hear about, along with the gardening, chickens and all that good stuff.

    Food, gardening, how you do it all, even architecture. Don’t get personal if you don’t want to, but all that other stuff, yeah! good stuff.

  7. As a farmgirl turned citydweller friend of El, I say carry on! You’re blogging about life, baby! Seeds, pods, chicks, clay, and condensation.

  8. Ran across your comment at Garden Rant. Good to see you again.

  9. I understand your disappointment in those closest to you not being interested in what you’re passionate about (I am actually going through that exact same thought process AS WE SPEAK!). But Farmgirl said it best – write what inspires you to the point of your comfort level. I share a lot of my life on my blog, but I can understand if you’re a private person how that might be uncomfortable.

    Just know that even if your good friends aren’t interested, there are hundreds, if not thousands of us who are! Even if I am 2000 miles away in California.

    Katie at GardenPunks

  10. I struggle with this very same issue, El. I find that some of the hard-core garden readers even get snippy with their comments when I write about non-garden topics. But, hey. It’s my blog, right? I didn’t promise a garden-only blog. And some days, other things are more important, including my son, husband, dogs or food–not necessarily in that order. 🙂

    I say, write about what the heck you want. Unless you’re trying to cash in on a single focus topic, diversity is not bad. Personally, the blogs I enjoy most are the ones with a theme, but that show the personality of the blogger.

    –Robin (Bumblebee)

  11. El I have enjoyed lurking and reading your posts. keep up the good work. U R Not boring. I suggest a post on seed starting! I am chomping to start something growing, as I don’t have a green house I need to wait a little bit longer before starting the veggies.

    BYW… what farm near lansing do you get your flour from? I would love a local source for my bread making.

    between Lansing and Grand rapids,

  12. There isn’t anything you could say that I would get bored with. xoxo

  13. Ah, the old “what do I blog?” question.
    Blog what you feel comfortable with, because if you don’t feel comfortable, there’s no blog. Speaking from experience, here. 🙂

  14. Wren: You, my husband and my daughter. This task is (I guess) all mine.

    Jules: Awww. “Good stuff.” It’s fun, frankly, going the long way around to making “good stuff.” I think I am just a bit down in the dumps is all…it’s cold season. And cold. Right now it’s 9*!

    Kristie: Mwah! (Big sloppy wet kiss to you!) I think of your parents and people often: what history. And dang, they could sure teach me a thing or three.

    Ed: thanks for stopping by! You really should consider a little lean-to greenhouse against your house. Fresh greens all winter, not to mention a cool place to start your seedlings.

    Katie: Sometimes it IS mighty tough if you feel like you’re the only person with these passions. I OFTEN feel this way, and, well, historically I have always been a bit of an oddball so it hasn’t felt too strange. But I guess I am glad I can blog and certainly read others’ blogs…I may feel I’m the only person in my county doing what I am doing, but I am not the only person on the planet!

    Robin: Here is the one instance where you can say “Back Off, HOE!” to much cackling and mirth. I’ve been enjoying your retrospective on the gardens. Dang, that’s a lot of work! Consider me A Friend In Clay.

    Shelly: Okay, seed starting: START saving containers now! We are the beneficiaries of lots of Girl Scout cookies now (ahem) and there are these neat little wasteful elaborate plastic tray packaging in there that are just ASKING for some dirt and seeds. Almost anything that can hold water can hold seeds. And as for the flour, go look at my MI tab above and check out Harriss Organics. They’re in Eaton Rapids south of Lansing.

    Angie: Aww! I think about YOU and how far you have pushed yourself in this last year. You’re so inspiring. And this year I am going to goad you into canning, so WATCH OUT!

    Liz: Ah, but I know how to find you! Must. Flick*r. More. You are such the queen of that realm (and so many others).

  15. Hey El, if you have time, I’d love to read a post about good garden flowers for Michigan.

    I’m asking because I’d like to make a little garden for my daughter Magdalena this year, one that’s nominally hers, so she can take a little pride in growing her own stuff (she’ll turn 3 right about planting time, so I’m not expecting much from her, I just want her to associate having a garden with “fun”).

    Last year I planted some rosebushes and some marigolds for her and all summer long she wanted to go outside and cut flowers to give to her mom or grandmother, so I want to plant more, prettier flowers, but I know nothing about them.

    She also wants in her garden (and emphatically not in mine) celery, carrots and “pickles”. That I can do, but flowers? I’m clueless.

  16. Hey Rob: stay tuned. I will do a post about kids’ gardens! Flowers are really easy. Probably the funnest thing to do is just get a packet of “wildflowers” and shake it on the ground. Lots of weeds will come up but some flowers will, too.

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