Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Real Life Vs. Blog Life; Keeping Perspective

Do you ever feel like your blog life and real life are battling against each other for time?  I sure do!  In fact I feel this way all the time now ever since I have gone back to work.  I especially feel this way even more so this time of year when everything is starting to bloom outside and calling me to come outside and play.

The dogwoods are blooming, the sun is shining and the temperature has been absolutely wonderful!

I have been spending my precious time off cleaning up a bit outside

We finally finished raking up all the leaves that had accumulated here in our natural area by the fence.  It may not look like it in this photo but it was a momentousness task.

I bought and added a few purple verbena to my flower area in between the pool patio and deck areas.  The Mr. has almost finished the lattice work too.  We still need to stain it and add more mulch to both this area and the natural are but I am pleased with how things are progressing.

This picture shows you quite a change from the way things looked here only a few weeks ago.  Do you see how large the leaves on my Oak Leaf Hydrangea have already grown?

Speaking of large, here's a glimpse of my Encore Rose bush.  It's huge isn't it?  I'm so glad to see it's starting to bloom!

I finally found a little time to put out just a few Easter decor items.

The scary bunnies are back!  My family is going to have fun with these again.  LOL!  The Mr. and son #2 do not particularly like them at all.

There is something about the facial expression on these bunnies that just freaks them out.  They also claim they have eyes that follow you around the room.  Hehe!

On the mantle I changed up just a few things for a more summery feel.  

I added my faux chocolate bunny for the holidays.  

I thought I'd show you my glass decanters I bought from work too.  We sell these in different sizes and shapes and in green too.  I just love them!  I think the purple is the perfect accent on my mantle this year.

Now that I've shown you some of what I've been up to, I'd like like to get back to the real meat of this post.  Real life verses Blog life and keeping perspective means time management, which I have not been very good at.  I can't tell you how many times I have rushed out of here off to work or stayed up late to post and visit and comment and so forth.  I know first hand how difficult is to keep up.  So it should come as no surprise when others find it too difficult to keep up with me.  

Once again I find myself feeling frustrated by those who stop following.  Why should this matter so much?  I guess because I have always felt like I really try to make a connection with those who follow my blog.  I guess maybe I don't or maybe I just don't measure up to their standards.  Whatever the case may be it's a bit annoying when it happens with no explanation what so ever.

I was thinking about this and thought that maybe it was a good idea to once again explain what type of blogger I am.  I mostly blog about my real life and my decor.  Rarely do I post pictures from magazines, Pinterest, other bloggers or other sources off of the internet.  I enjoy sharing some of my things and enjoy looking at yours and getting all sorts of inspiration.

Like you, I enjoy sharing my photos of my finds and home.

  I started off blogging under the name of Sailing Simply.  I miss that name and that blog so much and often wish I had never changed.  It still sits out there in cyber space waiting for a visit from me The Decorative Dreamer.  I kept it up because I had intended to post some of my sailing exploits on there.  Only I find that when I sail I really just don't want to be taking pictures.  I rather enjoy being with my family and friends and just enjoying the moment.  So often when I take my camera, I only take a few pics then decide not to post them.  Also, I find family and friends are not so keen to have their mugs plastered across the internet.  Do you know what I mean?

     I've especially enjoyed those few authentic friends I have made through blogging and try to visit and communicate with you as often as possible.  In real life I find I just don't have the time to do this often enough.  I don't have the time in large part because I work full time now.  I'm in retail and that means my hours change every week.  I work a few nights each week in addition my day time hours.  It's a very challenging thing to rotate your work hours and your home life, not to mention maintaining a blog.  But I have felt like I was doing it well.

It's nice to know when you do something well.  It's nice to also be rewarded for it too.  Woohoo!  I work hard and I'm so thankful to work for a company that recognized that.  I was also thrilled to be able to add another pin to my lanyard.  LOL! We get them for all sorts of things, kinda like hat pins.  Yeah, I love the small stuff!

But what I want you to know what I enjoy most about blogging is...being authentic to who I am!

 When I say authentic it means I am sharing my life, my thoughts and it's my blog.  The authentic blog friends that I connect with just seem to have a mutual enjoyment of sharing a part of our lives.  Somehow, at some point we have made a connection that the other person we are communicating with is real and has feelings and is sharing a snippet of their life.  It does not mean we have to constantly keep sharing comments back and forth on every single post.  We visit when we can and acknowledge that the person on the other end has a real life.  This are the friends that I have maintained.

  I wonder if those that just stop following others ever acknowledge that or maybe their life was just not able to make another connection with someone at that time because they only are interested in looking at pictures.  That's okay too, we all blog for different reasons.  Maybe they were just not that interested, who knows.   The internet just makes it too easy to log off from another persons life, but should we do so without even a goodbye?  I guess that's just part of the risk of blogging of opening up your life and sharing a little piece of you.  If you have dropped me because I didn't visit you enough, or didn't make the connection then I am truly sorry.  In my defense, as I hope you can see, I have a real life.

And it's calling me away to spend less and less time here in blogland.  I plan to keep sharing things with you and visiting you when I can.  I hope you understand that w/out my real life there can be no blog life worth sharing with you.  That's my perspective.

If you have read through this and would like to share your perspective I would love to hear from you.  What's going on with you?  Do you ever struggle with blogging and real life and time management?  

Thanks so much for dropping by.  I hope you have a beautiful day!

19 comments:

  1. Good Morning Mary,
    Girl I gave up a few years ago posting all the time and trying to keep up with the wonderful world of blogging..
    I seen my home being neglected and my family need me more that blogging..I love all the friends I have made..but I also have a real life..Now my friend as you know I just had a triple by pass last year and I also lost followers..so go figure..
    When blogging gets to be too much I just step away for awhile..This is my fun thing to do and I won't put added stress on myself..
    I have always loved coming by here Mary..Now go out on your boat have a drink and unstress..Love ya my friend..Hugs and smiles Gloria

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  2. I sure do struggle with it, Mary. I think a lot of us do..knowing when to STOP blogging and start living. It's a hard call sometimes. I have been doing this only a couple of years and it does take time. And then I feel guilty if I am NOT visiting those blogs that I have come to love...and feeling guilty for not always commenting because of lack of time.

    Sometimes you lose followers just because they quit blogging-they close their blog and Poof-just like that they are gone. I have found that I unfollowed a few blogs just because I felt I had nothing in common with them...or worse...that they were a sham...not real...and I LIKE real. I also have unfollowed a couple of blogs where the person never once responded even thought I was faithful at commenting on their blog. I try to acknowledge everyone at least once in a while...because I know how important it is to do that.

    I'd say keep blogging but do it at your own pace. Do it because you LOVE doing it -not just to keep others satisfied. I haven't followed you all that long but I have loved being here. xo Diana

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    1. Excellent advice Diana, thank you! I do feel very guilty about not being able to visit and comment to everyone as often as I would like. I find myself visiting more and more these days and not commenting because it just takes me so long to comment. I yak too much on comments and can't just say, Hey! Loved your post! LOL! I then end up choosing to visit several blogs instead, over taking the time to comment and then feel extremely guilty about it. I think you may have hit the nail on the head with my unfollower though. I'm thinking maybe they were a follower whom I didn't respond to fast enough. IDK! I guess I need to work on those shortened responses a little better now. I know I would rather someone give me a small amount of recognition then none at all. That's excellent advice. I can understand the no connection thing but I guess it's just hard cause sometimes you think you have made a connection on your end. I sometimes wish there was a special area you had to fill out when you unfollow. You know one where you could just check the box on some generic reasons or leave a message. LOL! That way you could know atleast know WHY? Thanks again, I an trying to go at my own pace...turtle pace! LOL!

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  3. Mary great post! I don't think I could do this and work full time. Real Life for me includes blogging as a way to reach out and share my life. Since I'm retired I have the time but still I don't post everyday and I visit and comment as often as I can but sometimes I just don't! I'm glad you have this outlet and those of us who like you just as you are will still be here. Hugs, Linda

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  4. Hi Mary!~ I have been out of the loop all week because I moved over to word press. Here is my new url www.debbie-debbiedoos.com. It sure was a stressful event and I am now able to breathe, catch up and add people back to my blog roll. I totally understand your thoughts. I do not put much thought into the ones I lose anymore. I used to, but now I am at a place that I blog because it is my hobby, and now I generate a little craft money, so that keeps me going out here. Otherwise, I would get a real job LOL! Actually this is a real job, the time and effort put into any how. Congrats on your recognition...well deserved.

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    1. Hey! I am having the hardest time following you w/out just going directly to your site. Your blog is not updating on blogger or the linky follower for me. What is up w/that? I am playing w/Google reader more now days since it saves me a little more time but I still don't see the subscription posts popping up with all the other blogger posts. I think I still need to work on that. Any tips or suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks!

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  5. I'm going to stop following you because now I see how insanely skinny your are and I am totally jealous!!! :-) :-) :-) It IS weird how that happens, isn't it? I suppose it's like you said: People blog for different reasons. I know that just 2 short years ago, I didn't even understand what blogging was about! I have since gotten the hang of it, and I enjoy it very much. I try to not let the line blur too much between ny "real life" and my blog life. I'm kind of boring in real life, so I really have nothing else to do! ;-) Now, about those bunnies....since when did the Mafia go undercover as Easter bunnies??!?!! Those dudes look like button men for the mob!!! I'm with your family on that one. I say let them sleep with the fishes! :-) They're s-c-a-r-y!!!!!!!!! :-) Have a great week, and thanks for sharing your thoughts on blogging. I agree with Diana...do what you do at your own pace!

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    1. YOU are no where near boring anymore then I am skinny! Oh, but I wish I were. I always enjoy your scapes and hearing what you are up too! Mob bunnies, huh? LOL! My family is going to love that one. Not so sure I should share it with them though because I have come home before to find them (the bunnies) facing the wall or fireplace, because my family didn't want to see their faces anymore. I just don't get it. Crazy! But, it's sooo fun to stir up things a little. LOL! Thanks so much for the congrats too, I really appreciate it!

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  6. Walked into my bedroom and saw my Stein Mart bedding and remembered that I forgot to say COPNGRATULATIONS on your Associate of the Month award!!!!!!!!!!! Way cool!!!

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  7. Hey Mary! Congrats on your recognition from work! I worked retail and still do but not as many hours as I used to ten years ago, so I know that award was really earned by you!
    Yes, sometimes it hurts when a blogger stops leaving comments, especially when they always did and now they don't but you see them commenting on all the other blogs! Makes you wonder what you did! That's life though remember God puts people in your life for a reason...some to love...some to learn from...some to hurt but who make you strong from enduring it!
    Love your blog Mary♥

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  8. I follow a ton of blogs and usually read them in my google reader so I don't usually comment or go the the actual blog unless they have visited me, or unless they have said or shown something that makes me just have to respond! Google reader used to have a place to "like" the post if I remember correctly, but it no longer does. It would be nice if this existed so you could know that others were still out there reading your stuff!

    I go through spurts on the blogging. Living life is what it is about--HOWEVER I found when I really stopped blogging because of a computer breakdown that I wasn't getting encouraged by the other blogs. Blogs have always been a source of encouragement, and also of ideas. These things help me to live my life in a fuller way---seeing things in the light of other peoples views, learning of books, music, recipes, creative ideas, spiritual sharing etc.

    My problem is I can only add new readers to my google reader if they are google blogspots because I have so many. It won't let me manually put other types of blogs on there. Soooo, this means getting them by email which I really don't like to do. Perhaps some of stopped following because of something to do with this. At one time I had to stop following some so I could add others to the google reader, but they have fixed this !!

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  9. Hi Mary!

    I totally "get" what you're trying to say & I don't care if you NEVER have the time to comment on my blog, just keep posting on yours so I can see what you're up to! You have so many wonderful thoughts & ideas & I never would have my pretty plate rack if it hadn't been for you showing that one.
    I'm impressed that you can find time to do the laundry, grocery shopping & cook any food, what with working full time! I sure couldn't add blogging to the mix when I was doing all that.

    I know Blogger had a hiccup recently & several people talked about losing followers & then they reappears. The ONLY time I have unfollowed a couple of blogs was where the person never once responded even though I was commenting on their every post. Its true that it is a two-way street yet there are bloggers who NEVER seem to comment on others. IDK either.

    Congratulations on being recognized for the good work that you do & please don't be too hard on yourself if you can't get around to everybody to comment. Its good that you have a life away from the computer! LOL

    Hugs,
    Rett

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  10. Hello there my friend! Great post! When I first started blogging, I thought I wanted a million followers and all that jazz. Not anymore. I visit my friends that I have made connections with and do it when I can. With all this moving jazz, my life has been crazy but I know that those of you that I count as my "blogging buddies" understand and will be patient with me! It is hard to find that balance. I don't even know how you do it and work full time! You go Associate of the Month!!! You are awesome and the fact that you can do it all is amazing. You do it for you and stay true to that. Don't worry about comments and unfollowers. You have to do what YOU want to do and that makes it all o.k.!!!!

    I like the bunnies, but they do look a bit on the hardened side!!! I think it is hilarious that the guys turn them around!!! I must say that I would probably try to eat the one off the mantle!!! Ha!

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  11. And... you are one skinny minny!!! I am so jealous as I seem to be a stress eater!! We have had so much company that we have eaten out way to much and I am trying to get in as much Publix Trinity ice cream as I can before we move! Your picture has motivated me! You look awesome!

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  12. I agree that you look awesome, and I love the happy wave to end this post. I'll choose to call it a wave of "hi ya!" and not "so long". I do understand what you said about the need to LIVE our real lives.

    I loved this:
    "I hope you understand that w/out my real life there can be no blog life worth sharing with you. That's my perspective."

    I've had precious little time to blog or visit like I would like to lately, but like you I have been trying to live a real life so I actually have something to blog about.

    I always enjoy my visits here. (I liked Sailing Simply too) I don't know why folks go away without a good-bye either.

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  13. And I forgot to say CONGRATULATIONS for the job recognition!
    And I also forgot to tell you that the bunnies are just plum creepy so I'm standing in the corner with the men of your place.

    But then, I'm pretty much scared of my own shadow.

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  14. Thanks for sharing your heart with us about all this. Yes, I have problems with real life and blogging, even tho I'm retired! It seems more and more people are either quitting blogging, or slowing down and/or changing their way such as not commenting, etc. So many people are just pinning, addicted to it, I think! I haven't started it, for that reason. Don't worry about the followers, I think the new thing is the email subscription, where they sign up to receive your posts by email. I've been doing that, but it cuts down on the comments, they read, but don't comment, and I can't tell how many have subscribed!

    Thank you so much for your sweet comment about my sister, and thank you for your prayers!

    Katherine

    P.S. - love your backyard!

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  15. Hi Mary! I completely understand how you feel and where you are coming from. I feel terrible that I haven't stopped by more often and for that I apologize. I sometimes get so busy that I don't make my rounds like I would like to. I love your blog, but especially you, and your sweet personality. I like that you are "real" and authentic...that's what makes you special. =)

    Congrats on your job and recognition. I'm so happy for you. Your backyard retreat is GORGEOUS. Enjoy the warmer weather and that lovely backyard and sailboat.

    Thanks for sharing! xoxo ~Liz

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  16. Yes, Mary, I totally understand. I'm retired (with a retired husband....lol), & I've tried so hard to keep up, but realized it just wasn't going to happen. We are doing lots of things to our home, & it all takes time. I love taking pictures that I can share at some point in a blog post. One of my New Year's resolutions was to only blog when (& only when) I had something worthwhile to blog about, & not to do things just so I could blog. That was a situation (trap) that I found myself in. I've been really good at holding to my resolution, & I'm truly finding blogging much more fun. I, too, have lost followers along the way, but have no idea who they are. It used to really bother me. I took it very personally. I try NOT to do that anymore. I do follow a lot of blogs & the only way I can handle it is to not worry about it. I love all the inspiration & ideas, so I try to just jump around & check out a couple of blogs whenever I can. I do always try to respond to anyone who comments on my blog -- I immediately go check out their latest posts, leave them a comment, & then thank them for leaving me a comment. I guess what I've finally realized & continually remind myself of is that I blog for fun, & if it gets to be a "chore," then I'd better not do it. I don't do sponsors, or ads or any of those things to earn money from blogging. I just love sharing.

    So here's the deal, Mary. I'll visit you when I can, & if you see something that looks interesting or fun at my blog, please stop by. No expectations, but rest assured, I will NOT stop following.....lol! Have a great weekend!
    CAS

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Hi Fellow Dreamers! Getting back into blogging and would love your precious feedback. I greatly appreciate and really enjoy reading your comments. Thank you so much!