lost in blogland…or…this might not be a popular post

September 21, 2010 |  Category:   life

I’m having one of those weeks where I’m questioning what all this social media stuff is all about. Why do we do it? I know from talking with some of my friends lately that I’m not alone here. There are definitely very good, personal reasons why I’ve kept the blog going day after day…most of it does not involve the readers, but there are days when there seems to be little point. Sometimes you feel a little over exposed, but that feeling is self-inflicted, really. Nobody is forcing me to blog. There are plenty of super supportive and nice people out there and that’s been worth gold, but I’m not naive to ignore that there are most likely some haters out there too and that’s when you start wondering why you even subject yourself to that by opening up and sharing your life with strangers.

I admit that I have cut way down on my blog reading and the ones I do come back to are authored by people who I’ve started caring about – mostly bloggers who have become friends or creative folks that I find inspiring (I still find great value in that). But the blogosphere (and I really do HATE that word) is crowded and not very original for the most part, which I recognize is hard to be these days (I rediscovered this quote recently from one of my favorite guitar players, “nobody is original, everyone is just uniquely derivative”). I trust my own instincts and style to know the products that I like. I don’t need or want anyone else to curate them for me. But that is just me. I guess I am tired of all this focus in consumerism.

The truth is, I have made so many connections and good, honest to god real life friends from twitter and the blog, so the value isn’t lost on me. If I ever at one point in my adult life felt lonely and craving close friends – like the kind that you had in high school where you can pick up the phone and talk to your friends about anything at any given time – I don’t feel that anymore. I have that now. Yes, through social media. Amazing. But there is also this very tiring herd/clique/high school mentality thing to it that isn’t lost on me either. I feel like I’m too old for that shit. I’m freaking 40 years old, but I even find myself getting caught up in it sometimes. Why? Because we’re human and I guess we all want to be liked and feel like we belong.

I don’t really know why I’m writing this. I know that it all comes and goes in waves and I’ll probably be gabbing again on twitter with all of you and having a grand old time, but I’m not feeling it for now. Maybe it’s time to pull back a little. I have to believe that some of you feel the same way too.

Update: thanks for all the comments so far. I’m glad that we can discus this so openly and honestly. This…is what it’s about. Thank you.

You Might Also Like

  • Roos September 21, 2010 at 3:37 am

    Hi Jenna,
    Thanks for the honesty! Why I read your blog? Simply because you write what life’s really about – and not many people do that. They paint a perfect picture of even more perfect lives. And by reading those stories, we feel more and more inadequate with our own lives…

    I too write about the real stuff. Sometimes I feel ‘less popular’ than the other bloggers, but know that that’s nonsense too. But this high school feeling is often there, just a you describe it.

    My husband and I are thinking about going into business together. Sometimes we feel like we work crazy hours, and then I tell him “remember that couple in Brooklyn I told you about? they make sériously crázy hours”.

    Please continue to write about your life, including doubts, fears, moments of joy and all that comes to it. I for sure love to read you!
    p.s. don’t know how much sense this comment makes, but I still thought I’d write someting to you 😉

  • mau September 21, 2010 at 3:54 am

    i feel like that sometimes too and i too have removed a lot of blogs from my reader. yours is one of the few i still read daily. i don’t tweet anymore (i only use it for links to the blog) and only use facebook to keep in touch with friends who live in other countries. i also don’t feel i HAVE to blog everyday. i do it when i really feel i have to share or record something for my own sake.

  • mette / ungt blod September 21, 2010 at 7:04 am

    its all a wave. thats how i experience it. you play along and you pull back a bit. personally im so happy that i started blogging and that other people do to. Its not either or -its oscillation.

  • Lauren September 21, 2010 at 7:49 am

    I don’t understand those who still act like high school rules still apply to adult life. My husband and I consistently leave a friend’s house whenever a certain couple shows. The minute they enter the house, the entire mood changes. My husband and I can’t figure out why everybody fawns over this couple. Their only accomplishment is to have dominated this social circle by treating other people like they aren’t good enough for the circle.

  • Nani September 21, 2010 at 8:02 am

    I know how you feel.. some days I wonder why I even bother, but like you I have gained a group of people who I cannot wait to see their posts. People you would not have the pleasure to meet otherwise, it’s like a whole new world of friends I never even knew I had.

    My main reasons for blogging (so I tell myself when I list them) include the ability to share, to vent, to be myself when I can’t talk to anyone else (except hubs). My Blog has become me. Sometimes I just have to remind myself of that when I am feeling bad. Sometimes it works, other times not so much.

  • sylvï September 21, 2010 at 9:15 am

    i’ve never tweeted, but i’ve quit and deleted blogs before, so i kind of understand what you’re saying. the need to share must just be inherent in humanity, after all it’s kept us alive and safe, and developing as a species.

    nowadays i try not to overthink my posting, after all there are copious others out there, and blog ‘just because’ ie. for no other reason than enjoying it (and the subconscious needs that may be fulfilled). mine really is just a weblog, not a sort of magazine with ads,articles and columns. and obscure, which is fine.

    i don’t know why i’m writing this comment, either 🙂 maybe to resonate a bit. and to compliment on that last photo with the diapered pony that sums up ‘hair-raising’ pretty well, the look on its face and all. has it been looking too deeply into the blogosphere?

  • dee September 21, 2010 at 9:22 am

    Jenna,
    I am not even sure why I love your blog so much–I’m a dozen years older than you, live in the deep South (for an academic position) and sometimes wish I were still in the busier northeast, have a daughter now 13 and I love great food. I so enjoy your photos of the girls– they remind me of those earlier years, the food, the places. And I admire your nerve to have your own business! Yours is one of 3 blogs I read every day. Thanks.

  • Renee Alam September 21, 2010 at 9:27 am

    I definitely feel what you’re saying.I agree with that quote,too.There is only one original of everything in the world,so you just have to make yours better than the other version of it.I really do love reading your blog everyday….even though I don’t always comment.I would really hate to see you give in to the “bullies” in life by not blogging.I really love how your blog is so honest & I love seeing your daughters and just reading about your life.I have a blog myself but never got around to making it my own & unique….I have never done facebook or tweeted…I just think it’s way too much since I homeschool my daughters and still want to spend time playing games with them at the end of the day.I used to spend too much time on blogs so now I just read a few of my faves and call it a day.I think too much technology takes people too much away from their families & more important things in life. I definitely agree that you can make some great friends on the net…I have made some that came and went, but that’s life,right? 🙂 I just think that there are limits to everything and that only you can judge for yourself when too much is too much…. I think something inside you will let you know when you need to stop.But don’t let others stop you from what you want to do or you’ll never be happy & they’ll find something else to complain about to make you miserable.Anyways,just keep doing what you feel is the right thing to do and don’t worry about how it makes others feel….worry only about you and your family & you’ll be successful. 🙂

  • sandra September 21, 2010 at 10:33 am

    i so agree with you, it has been on my mind pretty much lately too.

  • Brie September 21, 2010 at 10:36 am

    I don’t know how I stumbled upon your blog one day, sometime in January, but I always enjoy reading everything you write, whether you’re angry or upset or happy. I like that you show real emotion and like the others are saying, you don’t show you’re perfect all the time. I understand the need to pull back, but I just wanted to thank you for your blog. Your’s is the only one I really read. If you continue to write, I’ll continue to read. Thank you again

  • Taysa September 21, 2010 at 10:40 am

    I definately go through the “waves” you’re talking about. I think that’s a good thing. I worry about the people that never question social media or how they put themselves out onto the web or what they take away from it.

    That said, I have always loved your honesty and that is why I read your blog, because it’s not about products or advertising or shameless self-promotion. There are a lot of unoriginal blogs out there and yours feels like a spark of humanity among the drones. Whatever you decide to do in the future, thank you for sharing this much with us.

  • rifferaff September 21, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Yes, this: I guess I am tired of all this focus in consumerism.

    I completely agree and I’ve majorly pulled back on my blog reading for that reason.

  • Anna @ D16 September 21, 2010 at 10:43 am

    Oh, I most definitely know this feeling…

    For me, it’s a combination of the clique aspect of things and the focus on consumerism. So many blogs that I used to like have morphed into businesses of their own (rather than something to support an existing business), and that’s just so off-putting for me in most instances. Maybe it’s because I work in a commercial field, but I find it exhausting to constantly be looking at THINGS and STUFF and PROMOTIONS. It’s just too much.

    I’ve been thinking of writing about this subject, but I don’t feel like dealing with the inevitable backlash — which is itself part of the problem. Sigh.

  • Trilby September 21, 2010 at 11:02 am

    De-lurking to say that I’m a big fan of your blog, Jenna. I used to follow about a dozen, but now only return to two or three on a daily basis, of which yours is one. I live in the UK and don’t have kids yet, but there is so much about your posts that really resonnates – not to mention the gorgeous aesthetic you’ve got going! So I hope you won’t be throwing in the towel any time soon, although I can completely understand why you’d feel that a break was in order…

  • Jenna September 21, 2010 at 11:35 am

    Trilby, I won’t give up blogging. It’s still important to me, but it is good to question why we do it every now and then – and how it fits or doesn’t fit into the whole state of blogging right now. Not that I really cared about that anyway.
    Anna, backlash, yes…obviously I have other opinions which I didn’t elaborate on here, but rather kept things general, but I did feel the need to say them. I know many of us have been thinking the same thing. It seems like it would be nice to have a civil discussion about it.

  • Lyn @ A Photogenic Life September 21, 2010 at 11:58 am

    I think being an honest blogger is the toughest element of blogging and Jenna, I respect you for being so open with both the wonderful and not-so-wonderful. I’m pretty sure that no one beyond a handful of my college/hs friends and my parents read my blog 🙂 but I simply just blog for myself to keep a collection of ideas, inspirations, meandering thoughts and journal in hopes of creating something I’ll want to remember in these days ahead. I try to remind myself of that in every post.

    It’s really hard to know what to share and what to keep to yourself because there are so many haters – which I don’t understand…why would you waste your time being negative when I’m sure there are plenty of other things to do. I think it’s healthy to question and revisit the purpose of your blog. It’ll keep you honest, fresh, and most importantly, true to yourself. Something that, like you said, gets lost in consumerism and popularity contests! I hope you continue – it helps remind me that real people still exist in this world!

  • anne September 21, 2010 at 12:09 pm

    jenna, i have been feeling that same wave (as you articulately put it) on and off for several years now. it takes turns stemming from blogs, facebook, evites, etc. it is hard because you feel conflicted between remaining true to yourself and your own needs, and wanting to be included and liked – and this coming from someone who doesn’t consider herself to need that much social approval. i feel you’re the same, and know you understand what i mean.

    i have kept a blog for 4 years, but still on my hiatus of almost 2 years now. so i hear you, and don’t take for granted your graciousness for still sharing your beautiful life with us, because you have every right to be selfish and keep all that to yourself. 🙂

    fyi, you have a friend in california.

  • Sara September 21, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Jenna,

    Also delurking here to say that I too feel the consumerism-fatigue; I read recently on Frank Chimero’s site a prediction that the “niche” blog will keep getting less interesting, and the “lens” blogs will keep getting more so. And this is true, I think: I keep finding really interesting reads and points of entry via bloggers, and I’m finding that I’m drawn much more to that than to “style” sites.

    But I’ve been reading your blog for a long time, and I love that you have both your work and family here. It’s fun to watch your girls grow up, since I have three of my own, smaller than yours but growing fast. And my husband and I have the same wish to be parents and to keep growing creatively, professionally.

    It’s true that it may be crowded and derivative out there, but that could also perenially be said of book publishing, and every year, still more books are written and read. I think that it’s not so much about originality as it is about timing—that chance encounter with the right person’s story at the right time in one’s own life.

    Cheers to you!

  • Lecia September 21, 2010 at 12:28 pm

    For me, blogging is efficient. I keep at least a loose log/online photo album of my family’s life and I think we’ll enjoy being able to look back on it (I don’t keep any other scrap books/photo albums…). Lots of my relatives and friends read, so it keeps me connected more closely with them than I would be otherwise. And, I’ve made friends, as you’ve discussed. I spend far more time with flickr and twitter than blogging and in those spaces have felt that herd mentality you’ve described; with flickr in particular. I’ve taken breaks from it just to avoid getting too sucked in.

    Great post and topic for discussion/thought.

    Great topic for discussion.

  • Cynthia September 21, 2010 at 12:43 pm

    Jenna, thanks so much for the time and effort you take in posting your blog. I think you really inspire many of us to keep trying to be creative and live outside the box a little. Thanks for your honesty in raising a family while you and Mark also run a very successful business. I really enjoyed your pictures this summer at the cabin and also in the PNW. Your photos/travelogue are great.

  • Jenna September 21, 2010 at 12:53 pm

    Sara, thanks for a thoughtful comment. The analogy with books is interesting as I’ve never thought of it that way. I guess as blogs continue to grow in numbers and become more like businesses in and of itself (to Anna’s point), it’s about finding your own personal niche and preference from both a blogger and reader standpoint.

  • Lani September 21, 2010 at 12:54 pm

    I’m glad I read all the comments before adding my own thoughts. I have wondered for so long what is so readable about your blog and started to get an articulated idea of what it is by reading the comments. What I think it is is that your honesty allows readers to feel connected to someone who is being open and not superficial. Our culture has created a lifestyle that invites sound bites and shallow relationships. It’s not often that we hear deepest thoughts from anyone, much less in a public place. By being public, you further connect to people because of the courage it takes to expose yourself so vividly.

    When I blog I’m pretty sure I have no more than 5 readers and I don’t get comments ever, so I have really questioned the why of it. Yet I do it, albeit occasionally, because writing is fun and therapeutic. And my inner narcissist loves to read my own blog. What more do I need!

    I was worried you’d stop writing….and am glad to see that you’re continuing. I have tons of friends who read you and so it’s like having a special little community of sweet fine day friends. We talk about the tornado, the links, the girls, the recipes. OK, I’m done now. jeez, you really touched a nerve somewhere in me.

  • Jenna September 21, 2010 at 12:57 pm

    Lani, I thought you read it because, well…you’re the grandmother! I’m sure in the same way that my mom (and now my dad…hmmmm) check in on the blog. What better way is there to keep tabs on the girls?

  • patricia September 21, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    Oh Jenna you are SO not alone. I totally agree with you. I’ve pulled back a lot myself. I can really relate to the consumerism aspect of blogging—it’s over the top.

    In my case blogging has become more about sharing ideas. I’ve always tried to tread that fine line between being private but human at the same time. It’s difficult.

    Blogging (reading/participating & writing) is something that comes and goes for me. I’ve learned to just go with what I’m feeling and forget about how that may be perceived—for the most part. So don’t worry you’re certainly not the only freaking 40 yr old that thinks about these things.

  • nichole September 21, 2010 at 1:08 pm

    I’ve edited just about every commercial and content-aggregating blog out of my reader. I don’t need to see another all white interior, another shot of someone’s converse, another hipstamatic photo or another upstate, down-home, faux-vintage wedding.

    I started reading blogs because of the people who wrote them, and enjoyed seeing life through their eyes (much like a story). The commercialism is out of hand, and it’s sad to think of people spending their days staring at top ten lists, daily finds, decor ideas, etc. There is a time and a place for all of that, and I certainly benefit from the hard work of others if I am working on a decor project or need a recipe for dinner, but enough is enough.

    I work in advertising, and corporations are desperate to reach out to bloggers to sponsor promos, giveaway and contests. I can already hear taps softly playing in the distance.

  • Anna @ D16 September 21, 2010 at 1:22 pm

    There are some amazing comments here! I keep coming back to read them, and it’s very comforting to know how many people are out there who feel the same way. What a great discussion you opened up, Jenna!

  • Catherine September 21, 2010 at 1:30 pm

    I totally agree with you Jenna. Sometimes I wonder why I blog too.

    I personally blog for me, because it gives me a voice in this all to noisy world, I guess it marks out a space for me, like a little pin-point on a map and for some reason that translates to a little more meaning in my life. I don’t even think I have many readers, it’s just putting my words into this vast binary code that has some resonance.

    I also blog to keep track of my illness, to make it not such a secret (it’s a big secret to most of the people around me). It’s like breaking a boundary for me, it’s coming clean.

  • Jenna September 21, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    Catherine, you’ve articulated very well what keeps me going here too. Thanks for sharing.

  • martha September 21, 2010 at 1:35 pm

    yes yes yes to all of it.

  • Grumble Girl September 21, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    Oh lady,

    I hear you loud and clear. I feel the very same way on and off… I think I’ve decided that it’s okay to be on and off about it – nothing exists in a vacuum. It takes time and effort to churn out a blog post – especially when you have a business and/or children… and if no one is reading or commenting, does it count? To whom does it count? And yes, that high school-y thing is real… it’s weird wading through it all. Even at our age, I know. But? Mostly it’s fun… there are some great people out there, right? Le sigh… I know.

  • Krystle Rose September 21, 2010 at 1:59 pm

    I feel exactly the same way.

    When I started blogging I admit that I tried putting together collages of my favorite “products” because that’s what so many other people were doing. I got tired of that quickly and starting writing from the heart.

    I want my blog to be a reflection of me – a completely unique individual that has my own voice and opinions. If it’s something that other people have posted, I refuse to post the same thing. What’s the point, right? There are a million “pretty” blogs out there that have a following, and it’s okay that I’m not one of the masses.

    That’s why I love reading your posts, Jenna. They are completely, 100 percent, you. No one looks at life the way you do, and interprets your experiences with smart grace. I admire you. Many people do. Thank you for sharing your thoughts so openly.

    You rock.

  • Sam September 21, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    i never have been part of the ‘in-crowd’. i blog for me, much like catherine said. i tend to be quiet by nature and my blog(s) allow me to have a voice in the crowd. i do sometimes curate or share a pretty interior but it’s mostly b/c i can’t find a magazine i like anymore, so i write my own. i recently deleted my entire business blog, which i know probably wasn’t the best business move, but it had become tired..not what i wanted to say and starting over felt good.
    frankly, i’m having too much fun with my own family and friends right now to get too caught up in social media, and that feels better than any number of twitter followers or blog readers ever could.

  • Carol September 21, 2010 at 2:07 pm

    Funny that you should address the whole clique nature of the blog community, I had small moan about it on twitter not too long ago. I think that it’s great that people are able to create wonderful connections online, but I’ve found that once people are ‘in’ with the ‘in’ crowd the door is then closed to other people. But then, as I think about it more, I remember my experiences of school and finally becoming part of the ‘clique’ during my final year. All those years I’d wanted to become part of the fashionable set, the top girl crowd and when I finally did, I discovered that they were actually quite dull and boring. The main focus of their lives being fashion and boys. So, life isn’t always greener on the other side as it turned out.

    But at the same time, I still find it annoying when I congratulate individuals on twitter (those who are part of the clique) and find my tweets to them being ignored when they are saying thank you to those who they have established ‘connections’ with. I find it rude to be honest. Consequently, I’ve also decided to cut my blog reading list right down and to keep it to those who truly inspire me.

    Carol

  • jan September 21, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    in the few years that i’ve been consistently reading blogs, some have already shown that they will stand my personal test of time and i truly enjoy their daily content. others have not grown in the same way that i have, and i find myself no longer interested in what they have to convey. the ones that remain unread day-after-day in my reader are the ones i purge every so often. i love the point made earlier in the thread about oscillating in and out of blogs – that’s how i feel, too! i think that’s life. on and off. up and down. hope you are able to find a happy balance!

  • Bethany September 21, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    Jenna, I completely hear you on this, and can identify entirely. A couple weeks back I went on a “media fast”, where I tuned out Twitter, blogs, TV, and books for a full week (wrote about it here :: http://bspokeblog.com/?p=2058). I spent the time with my husband, and working on things I cared about but “never had time” for. When I came back, I edited my reader in a drastic way. I only kept the blogs whose stories had meaning to me. I realized that it was the personal accounts that drew me in, not the endless pictures of pretty things I can’t afford and don’t want.

    Anyways, all of that to say, your post resonates with me, and I appreciate your openness and honesty! Truly, you are one of the very few blogs I follow consistently, and it’s because of your ability to write about the everyday, and share your life in a real way. Thanks.

    -Bethany

  • Audrey September 21, 2010 at 3:31 pm

    You’ve met some really amazing people through your blog. You do it for the potential to meet more amazing people and to deepen your connection with those close friends of yours and people who inspire you.
    As my boyfriend told me– you have to be willing to take the good with the bad. The bigger and more well-known your blog is, the more potential you have to meet people who will influence you in a positive way. But you can’t expect that you won’t ever come across or be contacted by people that piss you off.
    Keep doing it because you love it, not because it’s expected. You don’t owe us strangers anything. 😉

  • Claire September 21, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    Hi Jenna – I like your post very much. I identify with all those feelings and feel quite debilitated by it at least once a year if not more. I also curse at myself and can’t understand how I can be so affected by such things at (almost) 40, but there you have it… to read your post and all the associated comments makes me feel comforted that I am not alone in this – so thank you! I too wonder why I keep doing it. In the good old days I felt like I was reaching out to people and making some kind of (odd) difference but as the *blogsphere* grows and gets more homogeneous and we are all guilty of skimming by even our most favourite of blogs I can’t help wondering if its even relevant to be contributing any more…. but I don’t mean to moan too much. I have actively tried to “revision” my own idea of my blog. It’s now first and foremost a personal record and I try to ignore the high school feelings that it somehow matters that less people comment, less people care and less people read (oh moan moan!! 🙂 — But I still love doing it. I still get a thrill every time I press the “publish” button and I still love my favourites like old friends and my Mum and Dad still love my blog and there is this awesome record of my life (in a kind of weird censored version) which my kids will one day appreciated. At the core of it, I am still proud of the shabby old thing.
    Thank YOU for keeping on, despite your feelings, because I know how tempting it is to not do it any more… but I’m glad you are still around. xx

    I like your blog very much.

  • gizella September 21, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    I’ve stopped blogging altogether, still twitter, no facebook (cuz that really is high school, isn’t it. ) That is my pulling back too. I do love reading your blog because of your honesty, your urban life. I live in san francisco, which is no New York, but we do some of the same things with our young one. I don’t know how you do what you do with all of the plates you are juggling. Its strange to think about people all across the world caring about you (love or hate) isn’t it? A good discussion

  • ChantaleP September 21, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    Hm, reading the comments was just as interesting as your post Jenna. I gotta say, I’ve met some wonderful people like yourself through your blog and twitter. I have to agree with everyone here about your blog. There’s a reason why I keep coming back. First, most of the images here are your own and they’re beautiful. Second, you present yourself as you. I don’t know you. Not even remotely. But even I can sense that there is nothing fake written here. Nothing that you want to ‘gain’. I have to agree with you. There really is a ‘high school clique’ mentality happening and I find it more so the last few months. I am not saying all bloggers are like this, there are actually human and wonderful bloggers out there! But there have been more & more newer ones, twittering away like rabid dogs trying to make more and more ‘connections’ and their ambitions are so palpable and thick, you can cut it with a knife most days. If I end up that way, can someone please slap me to reality?
    ps: I love your collection of My Little Pony. I also see a Polly Pocket ‘dress’ that I’d like to flick off that table into the great unknown (otherwise known as a garbage can).

  • Donna September 21, 2010 at 4:12 pm

    I’m so happy to have found a discussion on this issue! Thanks for raising it, Jenna. I am similar to Dee in the comments above. I also totally agree with Nichole. Although I’m fairly new to reading blogs, I’m already tired of the focus on lists of things. I have even questioned lately why I would want to read blogs and tweets by individuals in the blogosphere (ugh!) who attend exclusive social media-type events and then brag about it repeatedly. These are people who are creative and good writers, IMHO, but it does feel for me like high school. Anyway, the point has already been made in the comments on THIS blog that there are plenty of other original voices to read. I’m interested in that part of blogging. I value getting a snapshot of another person’s life I wouldn’t normally get. I’ve set up a blog but have not done anything with it because in my heart I’ve had this nagging worry about how to write one without “selling out”. I’m also worried about the haters. However, after reading the comments here, I’m clearer on what I could do, so thank you for that. I like your blog, Jenna, and will continue to read it for as long as you’re willing to write it…and as long as I don’t have a freaking pile of laundry to do.

  • Jen September 21, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    This is great timing for me also. I think it is definitely in the air. I also think seasonally, I do this every fall…look for what is real. More intimate connections, etc. And life re-evaluation. I just quit facebook this weekend, for a myriad of reasons, and feel so incredibly liberated. I hope it lasts. Your honesty is refreshing.

  • wendy September 21, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    posts like this one are exactly the reason why i love your blog jenna. i wish i am bold and articulate enough to blog with such honesty and authenticity, because it really is such a breath of fresh air. yes, please don’t stop blogging anytime soon!

  • cherish September 21, 2010 at 4:42 pm

    I think you have beautiful pictures and have told / documented a wonderfully inspiring story of entrepreneurship ( i hope that is a word ) and family. Thanks

  • laura September 21, 2010 at 4:43 pm

    This is a topic that I think most of us who blog do think about. I blog for my business but most of the time, I do it for myself- I have a tendency to be pessimistic so it’s nice to look back and remember the positive things that are in my life, even if it’s just photographs.

    There are time that I wish I didn’t have to edit myself quite as much but having a web based business, I don’t feel like I have that luxury. Instead, I read blogs that are honest (like yours) and connect in that way.

    As far as cliques go, I had to laugh because I so completely feel you on that. I am perpetually feeling like the kid that just isn’t cool enough! Thought I had enough of that back in high school and now it’s happening all over again in the blog world. Sometimes I care and other days I just say screw you guys, I’m going to go make a painting.

    (Btw, I love that you have this community going on in your comments. I feel like everyone here is pretty cool.)

  • rick September 21, 2010 at 4:55 pm

    i love your honesty, and the fact that you have the ‘balls’ to point these things out. i too agree, social media can be even worse than high school. all the weird cliques, popularity contests, and in-crowd crap, come on people, we’re adults now! anyways, love your blog, just keep on doing what you do (i’m munching on some whimsy & spice goodies as i type!)

  • K. September 21, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    I don’t know why I’m posting on this because I don’t feel I’m at any point the right person (a complete stranger and absolute beginner blogger who is too afraid to write the way you do). I went to your blog today because I’m in a terrible and sad mood the past days and I wanted to read something that makes me smile. I read your blog now and then because it really makes me happy. I get the way you feel. But then I must say that I find it admiring how you post your thoughts and feelings on any kind of situation and any which way your post goes I would be grateful to have a blog like yours (germany is blog new-land and mainly about fashion.. which I try not to fall into.. I fail)
    even if this all sounds a bit cheesy.. thanks from Europe
    Krystle

  • Becka September 21, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    This was such a great and timely (for me, and many others it seems) post. I can totally relate to what you’re saying, especially in regards to the clique highschool culture and consumerism – which often unfortunately go hand in hand. I’m sure that often it’s not intentional, but by virtue of us all in the blogging/social media world putting ourselves so publicly out there everything is felt that much deeper and noticed that much more, which can feel really overwhelming at times.

    I’m so glad that you’re going to continue writing! I’ve taken a really huge amount of blogs off my reader, but ones like yours are exactly the ones that I want to keep reading as it’s just an honest little window into your life. I don’t want to be sold stuff, I just want to make connections and relationships with people. That’s what actually inspires me more than style guides (not that I will never read them, of course I like stuff), genuine people. There was a time when a few people had asked about advertising on my blog (I don’t offer it) and I started totally overthinking how I ‘should’ be blogging, marketing tips, networking, etc and it all just felt so gross to me. In the end I decided that my blog is an extension of me, and my business, so rather than follow some kind of formula or get scoops before everyone else (and really, I never would) I’m just going to blog about whatever comes to mind – and when nothing does, I’ll just leave it for awhile. I feel so much better about it for doing so!

    All this to say, I enjoy your blog and thanks for such a thought provoking post!

  • Andrew Thornton September 21, 2010 at 7:21 pm

    I don’t think you’re alone in these feelings. Even though I love the creative community that I’m apart of, in part because of my blog, and the fact that the blog has helped generate business for my online stores, I do feel at times that I’ve become the universal dumping grounds for disgruntled blog readers. Seriously, I get people writing in who tell me what to do, how to live and that I’m a very bad boy. This hasn’t happened just once or even twice. It’s like a monsoon of angry people unleashing their venom at me.

    And it’s my fault. I put myself out there and I know that. The more I’m out there, the bigger my name gets (even if it’s relatively small in comparison to mega stars) there will be more of these detractors.

    I wish that I could ignore all the hateful bitches in this world, but I can’t. Even if I don’t want to, I internalize it and feel the cancer of their words or implications spread through my life.

    I don’t like this part of blogging. I’d happily bypass it. I’m still trying to find a reason for it. There’s a lesson in everything. I’m waiting to uncover the mysteries of it.

  • MAry September 21, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    Jenna, I understand your feeling even though I have not sarted a blog … yet. You are right, there is a lot of sameness. But, your voice is unique. Your art – whether it’s food, photos, or prose – cuts through the “sphere.” I hope that you realize you have many people who are happy to “see” you each day, even if they don’t write. Isn’t the customer service rule that 5 people complain for every one who is happy? Also, perhaps it’s the editor in me, but I expect there to be a morass of mediocrity, which I bookmark, and then, over time, I whittle down to the most precious sites. I wish, for you, that there was some type of anti-negative software, like anti-virus software, to protect you. Best wishes for an uplifting wave of positive response to your post!
    Mary Hallahan

  • Jenna September 21, 2010 at 10:11 pm

    I’ve read each and every comment and I want to thank you. It’s been really nice to hear everyone’s thoughts and I’m happy to say that I’ve not received one negative email or comment. Andrew, I am sorry that you’ve been subject to such hater emails lately. I don’t understand where that is coming from. Nothing that I read on your blog elicits that kind of hate and criticism. It is a mystery, as you say…

  • 1 2
    FACEBOOK TWITTER INSTAGRAM PINTEREST BLOGLOVIN