Wednesday, January 26, 2011

A love letter to the Blogosphere


Blog. Online journal. Public diary. Record. Whatever you want to call it, you are a part of it in some way, just by clicking on this link and reading these words.  It's an interesting little habit we all have, of documenting every moment of our lives. Our meals, our love, our moods, our likes, wants, do-not-wants, have to haves, must dos and inspiration.  In the world of blogging, we all get it. We understand the drive to take an outfit shot even in the freezing cold, we get the multiple photos of food, this plate and that plate, the features and the guest posts, the run down of the sequence of events it takes to make a particular meal. This makes sense to us. And more often than not, those who do not blog just simply do not get it.

What started as a simple hobby in the late 90s, a la Livejournal and a bit of Diaryland prior, grew and grew until my small circle of LJ-ing friends began to expand. I became aquainted with friends in other towns, states, countries. We saw the ins and outs of each others' lives, we saw the ups, downs, the heart-breaks, the break-downs, and were privvy to the entire coming-of-age sagas we all shared with each other.  In time Livejournal gave way to Blogspot, my old site getting dusty in my bookmarks after years of use, cobwebs growing over my entries, lj-cuts, and photobucket pictures.  Gone, not forgotten, but pushed to the side for a newer, shinier way of doing things. Blogging. With my new "blog" I found a newer voice, less confessional and, I told myself, more mature. Gone were the passive-aggressive entries we all wrote, the "if you think this is about you, it is," the unloading of frustrations, the venting. My blog was a place for beautiful things. For documenting. And so I did. I started this site with no more than three readers, and each week as I continued to write here, as I continued to share more of myself, I met more and more like-minded people.

And the best part about meeting like-minded people is just what the word suggests- the commonalities and the shared understanding.  I'd always considered myself a bit different from the people I chose to surround myself with in my daily life- although I love all of my "real-life" friends to the ends of the earth (and back!), I sometimes felt that there were different aspects of myself- the creating, the writing- that wasn't always understood. Through this blog I have met some of the most talented, inspirational people who celebrate the need to do that creating, to do that writing, and many of these women have transcended from "online friend" to "real friend."

And it is still humorous to me to use the term "online friends." To many people that conjures up the idea of a 40-year old man in a basement, posing as a young twenty-something. And although having "blog friends" may have once been a strange concept, perhaps now in the year 2011 it's not so weird. Social media was cool to many of us before it was cool, and now, ten years later, it is very, very cool. Now that it is acceptable to blog, to tweet, to Facebook with every person you've ever known, this strange little habit we've always had is suddenly the thing to do.

To be able to have this space, to be able to go through my day and have ideas pop into my head about possible blog topics, and then share those thoughts with thousands of people is an amazing gift. Blogging allows me a creative avenue I wouldn't otherwise have. As a stay-at-home Mom, it gives me a sense of contributing, a sense of purpose outside of my day to day workings as a mother, and it gives me a reason to keep those wheels turning in my head.  It keeps me sharp. This blog has brought so many opportunities into my life, from meeting really fantastic people to being able to share in the experiences from all walks of life. It's made me have tougher skin; it's made me a more effective communicator. Through the many design and fashion blogs I read it's even made my world a little prettier. Overall though, this space has allowed me to forever encapsulate some of the happiest moments of my life; my marriage, my pregnancy, the birth of our son.

So, this is a love letter to the blogosphere.  Thank you for existing. Thank you for giving all of the weird, obsessively documenting parts of myself a place to live and thrive, thank you for giving me a place to share the never ending parade of thoughts in my head. We all have different reasons for being here, for blogging and reading. For me, it's all about saving a piece of every single day. Freezing moments so I can always go back and experience them once the hourglass has turned itself over. It's my husband's smile in a photo from date night, it's the accompanying story full of I love yous and I love this, it's a video of our son laughing, a picture of the way the light hits our bed on a particular December afternoon. It's the outfit I wore on a day I felt beautiful, it's a collage of memories, a flashback in time. It's the sense that even though time marches on, there is a small place in this huge world where everything is safe, where I can always return to. Daily, weekly, monthly, yearly. And although I live in the now, because, after all, that is what blogging is about, the now always has a yesterday. And when tomorrow comes, and yesterday may be a little foggy, I can always go back here, and remind myself of so much.

69 comments:

  1. Thank you for blogging Danielle, your blog is a wonderful addition to my blog family :) I recently couldn't read my favorite blogs everyday I missed my blog family. Even if we all don't always know one another it still feels like a support system, a family to me. :) Lovely post dear
    Love and Turtledoves,
    Jacqueline

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  2. "And when tomorrow comes, and yesterday may be a little foggy, I can always go back here, and remind myself of so much." ...This sentence is why I love the blogging.
    Such a great post!
    xox

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  3. This is sincerely beautiful. I loved reading this and honestly felt like you were writing for me...the concept of it, not literally of course. High five and have a wonderful day.

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  4. I love reading your blog Danielle, thank you for loving to write it. I started sabrinarella for the same reason, to start fresh. Let go of the negativities of my teenage years and start with a clean slate. However, I still plan to keep my LJ forever because my heart will always be with LJ.
    You're great.

    sabrinarella.wordpress.com

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  5. What a lovely post! Ayden irected me to it on twitter and I am now in love with your blog!

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  6. I can't even explain how much i needed to read this post. I've felt so much pressure and certain hate has really gotten me to recently that i've started to question whether to carry on with my blog (even though i love it so) but reading this has made me focsus on the positive things in the blogging world, and realise just what amazing people i have in my life because of my blog <3

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  7. I missed the Livejournal days but I was happy to return (when I felt like blogging again) to a new home. I just started out on here, and I hope one day that I find myself in the same place you are now. I bookmarked this. Very inspiring! Thank you!

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  8. Thank you for posting that! It's refreshing to be reminded why I'm always writing a blog post in my head... you write beautifully and explained blogging in a way I never would have been able to.

    <3 Amy

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  9. Wow this was beautiful. When I started my blog I didn't know if I would like it or continue. It's still new but I'm surprised how much I like it. There's something cathartic about documenting your life each day. At the end of the year there is so much forgotten, but with blogging it lives forever.

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  10. such a great little letter. sometimes i think we forget the beauty of what blogging is all about!

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  11. What a great post! I feel so much the same way about blogging - the necessity of creating and writing, making connections with people who understand that, having so many important thoughts and moments documented forever. Thank you for the great work you do on your blog and for all the inspiration you've given me as a blogger. It's definitely encouraging to know that there was a time when you could count the number of followers you had on one hand, and now you have thousands. I love that you sent out a thank you to the blogosphere and I'm pretty sure all your readers would want to send a big thank you right back your way!

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  12. Well said! And the photo is amazing.

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  13. This is so beautiful, Dani! I absolutely love your blog and you and your beautiful family. Y'all are so amazing. Your blog is a total blessing to me. And, out of the blogs I read I must say yours is on the top of my list of favorites. So, omd, thank you for being the wonderful happy blogger you are. Have a great day, Miss! ♥

    xo. kf.

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  14. Words said well Danielle.

    I remember your post about if you were going to quit blogging (shortly before news of baby) and even still I think of those words all that time ago, with my own reason or wondering why others do. But you summed it up, it's to remember, and to reflect.

    Blogging is better than a personal diary because even if we have our down days, someone who reads and leaves a note could make it a good one. Now there's no chance of that happening with a closed book.

    Keep on blogging!!

    Marthaa

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  15. This is a fantastic post. And all of these reasons are the same reasons as to why I started blogging.

    I love your description of Livejournal, I used mine for exactly the same thing - to vent. LJ is so full of drama. xD

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  16. I'm sure this is exactly what all bloggers feel, like you've picked through all the great blogging minds and just put the words in place. I've jumped from LJ, Great Journal, Xanga, Myspace ... whatever .. it's a form of expression no one but us bloggers will ever get. If this were a facebook post, i'd "like" it....
    Diana likes this post. :)

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  17. well put! I absolutely LOVED reading your love letter. AMEN.

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  18. Thank You for this, it made me cry, I was having such a big day and was actually considering taking a break from blogging, but you have reminded me of all the amazing things that come along with sharing your life online xxx

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  19. Danielle,

    Your blog is wonderful! I am always eager to read what you've lovingly shared with the rest of us each day.

    Your letter is exactly how I feel about blogging. Thank you for putting into words what I could not.

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  20. This is an amazing post! I too and in love with this world. like you i am a young mother and wife and this is the perfect place to share, love and laugh along with others. thank you for your awesome blog and please keep these great posts coming. ps charlie says hi to henry. www.victoryissweet.blogspot.com

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  21. I couldn't have said it better myself. Love you, friend {yes, friend!}

    <3

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  22. I love this ode! So many of my real-life pals don't get the "online" thing, but it's been such a huge part of my life for so long, (Before blogger I wrote on Melodramatic.com - ha, ha!) and it's so refreshing to hear someone point out all the positives about it who gets it - I guess I'm NOT crazy after all - lol. :) Have a beautiful day!

    Ashley

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  23. You've really beautifully described the blogging journey. I get it and I heart it! If you'de like...please feel free to stop by my blog and enter the giveaway! :) Hearts, Janna Lynn

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  24. oh goodness! i have tears in my eyes. this was so beautiful... and that last sentence? perfect. it's exactly why so many of us are part of this blogging world.

    thank you for this. i feel so blessed to know you, sweet friend. so, so blessed. <3 xo

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  25. I love this! Pretty amazing. People always think I'm crazy when it comes to blogging but I love it. I love sharing with people and I love writing and having a place to look back on. Like you I started on Livejournal and migrated to blogspot but I still use my LJ for the really personal things.

    For some reason this post made me smile, like someone out there gets where I'm coming from!

    The Sweetest Life

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  26. beautiful post danielle. your blog was amoung the first 5 i started reading and it will always hold a special spot on my computer screen :)

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  27. What a truly beautiful post. I am so glad that I have somehow stumbled across your blog. You have always given me so much inspiration. Sing it sister!

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  28. I love this! I feel the same way.

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  29. Amen to that! You were one of the first blogs I follow and still one of my favourites today. Keep doing what you're doing, and keep the blogosphere love alive!

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  30. Lovely post. You make the blogosphere a sweeter, happier place.

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  31. Love reading what you have to write, you always have the right thing to say, especially about blogging.

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  32. Danielle,
    I think your writing is absolutely beautiful, and I love reading it. I remember stumbling across your blog and thinking wow this girl is so awesome, and you are actually one of the reasons i started blogging. You are truly an inspiration, and as a person you seem so strong and motivated, as a mother you seem so loving and dedicated. These are traits that go a long way, and it makes your readers look up to you. I love you and your blog!!

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  33. Well put. I love this post so much! Thank you for writing this and share it with the whole world !

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  34. This was beautifully written. It's so true what you said. This just shows that there are more "good" bloggers then "bad" bloggers and that we are all connected in some way. People who don't blog look at me strangely when I suddenly scribble down a blog topic but those who do blog just look at me and nod their heads knowingly.
    Keep writing beautiful words and know that the blogosphere is sending love right back to you!

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  35. I was going through all my old blog post today thinking all the same things, of course you have a beautiful way of writing it!

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  36. Really impressive piece. It makes the idea of blogging a bit more appealing. You are wonderful :)

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  37. love this. i'm glad we all get each other :). you're the cutest.

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  38. I couldn't have said it better myself! Thank YOU for making the blogosphere so lovely :)

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  39. beautifully said....
    by the by, when are you going to start daydreaming about what to put on that other non photographed arm?!? :)

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  40. What a wonderful post! You are such an amazing writer, I never get tired of reading your blog. Thank you for sharing your life with all of us bloggers! :)

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  41. this is a great love letter! i too want to blog to document life and the small things that happen so to not forget. i have the worst memory anyway, so it works for me. and plus its fun meeting new and interesting people like yourself.

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  42. Thank you, too. :) I've been reading your blog for nearly a year now and it has become one of my absolute favourites.

    So much love!

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  43. Perfectly worded and wonderfully inspiring. In fact, we are lucky to have YOU as an inspiration in the blogging community.

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  44. Thank you for this post! I feel the same way. Blogging is a creative avenue that we are lucky to have. I am an obsessive documenter of things, and I love the way the blog medium includes photos and images while also allowing for on-going commentaries and conversation. It's a wonderful invention, really.
    Courtney

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  45. Your words are perfect. I just know that someday you will write a book. You can so easily express yourself with words. Thank you for sharing yourself with us.

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  46. My sentiment exactly! Can we be "online friends?" Too live by the philosophy of making each day WORTH writing about is all that I want! Can't wait for more...

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  47. Thank you for sharing your life with us. You are so honest and inspiring. Your blog is one of my favourites:)

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  48. I read your blog every day and every day I love it! Your mention of "if you think this is about you, it is" made me laugh out loud - I remember those days right down to my dumb haircuts.

    Thanks for sharing it all.

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  49. I just "discovered" this beautiful world about a year and a half ago, and I fell in love with it. I'll send love to you and thanks for sharing your life, it makes my day a little better to be able to feel the gift of being let in to other peoples lives.

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  50. So very true,and so beautifully written. x

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  51. i wish most of my friends understood blogging. i was actually poking around my LJ the past week, its so hard to read sometimes. i was feeling the urge to update though.

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  52. Lovely post! Most of my friends don't understand the urge to blog, but a few have got into it because I did - I'm loving having a bit of overlap between the two worlds!

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  53. This made me smile. You are such a great writer and your words are heartfelt and sweet! This is a good reminder why most of us blog. :]

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  54. Thank you for your inspiration on blogging.

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  55. great post. I also have been around since the livejournal and diaryland days, it's come a long way since then, hasn't it? it doesn't even seem weird to me anymore to talk about "online friends." It just feels so natural and the community I've found through blogging has impacted my life in ways I never thought possible.

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  56. Love this! I feel the same way! I love reading your blog and am so inspired by you! THANKS!

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  57. Danielle,
    I think it is so awesome that you love to share your life with others and that you care so much about the blogging community.
    Your blog has become one of my daily reads and you helped inspire me to start my own blogging adventure!

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