Thomas and Evie

IMG_6252 copyThis past weekend my oldest sister, Charissa, her husband, Tom, and little girl, Evie, came back into town to celebrate some birthdays! We celebrated Evie’s 1st and Tom’s 26th! It was so surreal that the baby girl that had made me an aunt was turning one and it was such a good time to be able to be surrounded by so much family and so many friends! I especially loved seeing Evie interact with her little friend Hudson (pictures below). They were born about a week apart and it’s just the sweetest thing seeing how they really do seem to understand one another. :)IMG_6227 copyIMG_6236 copyIMG_6234 copyIMG_6244 copyIMG_6255 copyIMG_6258 copyIMG_6214 copyIMG_6263 copyIMG_6266 copy

And here is a quick snap of Justin with one of my family’s cats, Luna, or ‘the grumpy one’ as we’ve titled her. My camera lens gave Justin a bit of a Popeye look, but Luna’s complete disinterested and disturbed look made it too great of a photo not to share. :D

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Social Media Considerations

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(photo from kandr blog)

I’ve been thinking very recently about the idea of leaving social media through the avenues of Facebook and my blog. Recently I find myself frequently confused by the many voices and suggestions and words that I put myself in contact with on a daily basis.

It seems like these days we’ve all built social media routines into our normal lives so seamlessly that it’s so unorthodox to attempt to remove oneself from any social media platform. I’ll always use the excuse, ‘but I won’t have access to this or know that or be able to see this or let this person know this’ and it complicates being able to make decisions in regards to social media because we either feel like we owe people certain information/explanation about our lives, or we expect certain information/explanation from other people. It’s a very weird, but seen as normal, dynamic.

I am finding that if I allow too many voices into my life that I feel flustered, I’m not sure yet if that is a youthful inability to compartmentalize or if it is just a personality quirk of mine. Whatever the reason though, social media is consistently the culprit of stress and over-thinking in my life and I am looking to put an end to that.

I don’t know what that should mean yet, whether it’s to keep up Facebook and my blog and just not utilize them or if it’s to shut them down for a time, or if it’s to remove myself completely from those outlets.

It seems like such a drastic choice to think I might decide to have a life apart social media, I almost feel guilty for depriving people the right to view my life whenever they want, I think that could be a problem, haha :D

For a long time I’ve examined the success of my home, work, and life by reviewing my past and other’s present, through Facebook and blogs. I am actually in a very good place right now in regards to that poor habit, I am aware of a lot and have gained rest in a lot of areas, and I think it’s good, but, thanks to social media, I am also still also very aware of a lot in other people’s lives too, and I am realizing that I don’t know if can be that invested. Because the thing is, I seem to find myself invested in people’s lives, due to social media, without even meaning to! Maybe I shouldn’t say invested, because it’s not really invested in a real way, it’s more like invested in an observing way, aka, a pretty lame way to say you are involved in other human beings lives.

I always think I’ll regret giving up connections of Facebook and my blog, that I’ll look back and think why didn’t I just keep posting so I wouldn’t have empty pockets of time when I wasn’t recording what was happening in my life or staying connected with so many other people’s lives, why would I just give it up for a stage, shouldn’t I just decide one way or another and stick with it?

But you see,

I want to remember my life, but I don’t want to have been so overly concerned about remembering and compiling blog posts of my life when I was meant to be living my life.

I want to stay connected with people, but I don’t want to live life thinking that seeing that someone had a baby is as invested as congratulating someone on having a baby.

I want to feel inspired, but I don’t want to feel like my life or home is in need of a makeover because I am bombarded with possible DIY projects to tackle.

I want to share news with friends and family, but I don’t want to feel like I am meant to share in a certain way or put the standard on myself that it isn’t official until its Facebook official (it sounds lame, but I know I’m not the only one out there that can feel that way!)

I think that many, many people have found the unique healthy balance in their interaction with social media, I am concerned though that I have not.

These are just some thoughts I’ve been pondering, some habits I’ve been mulling over in an attempt to understand better why I’ve put them in place, whether consciously or unconsciously. I’ve interacted with some very good habits recently, ones that have made me consider the validity and worth of some of my other habits.

One habit that I am seeking to put into place more is one of actually experiencing rest in Christ. If a Christian, we are allowed the peace and rest of Christ at any/every moment of any/every day. It’s almost a Sunday school answer it’s said and heard so much in the Christian community, but what isn’t talked about as much is the sneaky ability and habit of being able to refuse to live into that peace and rest, sometimes without even realizing it. When I am stressed or anxious my initial reaction is to try to do something to feel peaceful again, to read the bible or pray or just ask for help, to ask, ‘what do I do?’ When really, what we are meant to do is to quiet ourselves, GIVE our worries to God and acknowledge the peace He offers. It’s not an emotional show or to-do list, it’s a quiet release. I am just recently learning the difference between the two and realizing more how less emotions can leave room for the right feelings, it seems like such a funny statement, but it makes so much sense when you find yourself without the anxious emotions but full of a peaceful, understanding calm.

Giving God space in our minds and hearts to reveal His peace in our lives is something that wins over any contrived emotional experience every time.

The other night Justin and I went over to my older brother David and his wife Judy’s home for a bit, well it ended up being 5 hours, haha, :D , but amidst the ebb and flow of conversation this topic of social media in our lives today came up and resulted in some excellent conversation, swapping of perspectives, and stating of wisdom. I want to be able to remember each little part of the conversation because it was so good, but I think that is just the blogger inside of me feeling like I owe my blog the most complete and thorough explanation of my life, that I NEED to have the conversation recorded, when really it’s okay to be able to say that we had a great conversation and then leave it at that!

Along with the habit of realizing peace in my life, I’ve been considering the longevity of habits. My blog is a little over 2 ½ years old and it has recorded SO much of my life already, but I think about my life 10, 15, 20 years from now and I can honestly say I don’t think I want to be blogging then. I don’t think I want to be concerned with an internet space throughout all of those years or be dependent on a digital space to recall my life, perhaps I don’t give my own memory enough credit, perhaps I think that I will want a detailed account of my past more then I actually will, perhaps I cut short the other ways to remember, perhaps I don’t realize that quality is better than quantity, even in memories.

I have a BOAT load of other thoughts on this topic and the process of my interaction with it, but I think to suffice, since this post is already almost a blog in and of itself :D , I will just say I have been considering leaving this space and Facebook to attempt to allow myself the time to build habits of hearing God’s voice in my life above all of the other voices that I seem to constantly invite into my life under the heading of ‘normal’.

Blogger Autobiographies | Fountainhead

fountainhead

Today I would like to introduce to you Jessica and her blog Fountainhead. She is one of the few bloggers that I not only know in real life, but is also in a similar stage of life as I am! Jessica blogs about everything from music she loves to dreams for the future and I am so pleased to introduce her to you today! I hope you find inspiration and encouragement from her honest account of her story and enjoy getting to know her as much as I have!! :)

1) When/Why did you first start blogging? I started blogging because of a suggestion made in my Intro to Sociology class in 2011. During the 2011-2012 school year I went to a technical college to take a bring from real college and get some core classes taken care of. I had a fun time choosing classes because tech colleges seem to have so many more options than CIU!! So I took a few classes like Civil War History and Sociology. Well it was a few weeks into the school year, September. Occupy Wall Street was starting to take off. My professor, Dr. Peggy Campbell, was a super free spirit. She had to have been a hippie, present at Woodstock, or something like it. She was a fun professor. One of the class discussions she introduced was the way our time is radically changed by our culture, and our culture is radically changed by our time. We have new and old ideas mending and clashing; outlooks and perspectives continuing to develop and deepen; even trends come and go and that has some impact on culture and society. I remember having a fantastic class discussion about the workings of society and culture. Near the end of class she asked a rhetorical question: would you ever document your history? Keep track of who you are and you’ll see: a few years now you will see how who you are now is not who you are then. What if you recorded your culture? What if you recorded your reactions to the ever-changing society? What if you recorded your history, and give it a place somewhere in the books? Challenge accepted. I created a new blogger account in mid-September 2011. I wasn’t sure what to write about, how to write, or even really what a blog was. But a few weeks later in October 2011, I chose to record simple history. Nothing fancy, nothing necessarily about me, but something that I was witnessing: I wrote about Occupy Wall Street. This will go down in the books, but I got to talk about it from my perspective. I named the post “Occupying a Part of History” and I did this with double meaning: the effects of a national movement occupies and transforms the course of history, and I am a part of the history being made in the world. I was encouraged to occupy a part of history so that I can see how I change and develop and how my culture and another’s culture mesh and clash, and how society affects me positively and negatively, and how my worldview has deepened. I started blogging to keep up with me because I can barely keep up with the world.

2) Why did you choose your blog name? My blog has gone through a few names and facelifts. I started with the long phrase “Fly From the Highest Swing” out of a song I loved at the time by Priscilla Ahn. It was a very long name because, like I said, I wasn’t really sure how a blog operated. I chose that as the name because I love the imagery behind it: when you’re a kid you imagine flying through the sky every time you reach the climax of swinging. When you get there you think, “what if I let go? Could I really fly?” But reason, even as a child, prevents us from letting go of the swing and seeing how far we can go. The same idea I chose to apply to my blog because I wanted to be reminded that whatever I write can go anywhere; there are no limits! And I can be as creative or as dull as I’d like to be. It was a reminder to let go of the swing every time I came to the key pad to type. Since then I have changed the name to Fountainhead. This change came a few months after I got married. I was looking internally for a place to call home; everything was so new and fresh and not familiar yet, and I wanted something comfortable to call home within me. I remember going through the process of loneliness and frustration, and reconstructing me from the inside out. As I processed, I realized more and more about myself that I had not realized before. I traced my thoughts, desires, feelings, temptations, joys, and everything about me back to its roots, its origins. It was refreshing, like finding the fountainhead of crisp water and I realized that that’s what I had been finding: the fountainhead from which my everything pours. This was the Lord, this was an old home, and old soul, this was everything about me that me who I am. I changed the name of my blog because I realized more and more that what I was writing came from the very basic origins of my being. All of my interests, intellect, discoveries, and joy were reconnecting with the fountainhead, from whence it came. And I am recording that fountainhead in its many faces.

3) What is the core story or purpose behind your blog? The story behind my blog is my story. When something happens in the world (personal, local, cultural, national, international, good, bad, and ugly) I post something about it. This shows in form of what TV shows or music I’m choosing to be entertained by; a book that I’m enjoying, or thoughts about my own development, identity crisis, and walk with the Lord. I see the purpose of my blog as being something like a journal that I don’t mind people reading. It chronicles my experiences, the things that I consider home, and it serves a small purpose for me to look back over the past few years and see what has changed, what has stayed the same, remember what I’ve learned, remember how the Lord has worked in and around me, and to reconnect with the younger me. It gives me a chance to go back through the hard times and say internally to my younger self, “It’s okay, Jessica. You made it. You’ll be just fine.” It’s like therapy in some cases. My blog is the one thing that I don’t mind being a little selfish about; the underlying theme of Fountainhead. is me. How I react and interact with a world that is different every second the world spins. It’s my attempt at self-expression, and I use it as an outlet for just that. At the same time I have learned to use my blog as an outlet for ministry. Someone from high school once asked me if I could start posting Bible studies, or devotionals because they would love to grow closer to God and thought that I would be the perfect person to do that. I started off with explaining the fallacies of Bible translation and how to correct our mindset. Since then I have shared personal epiphanies and revelations with my readers in hopes that they can find the inspiration they need to seek God as He is calling them to Himself. I think that blogging provides that rare opportunity to be completely real with people about life, likes and dislikes, frustrations and joys, but still show that the One keeping it all together is the One who told the winds and the waves to settle down. I love this about my ability to blog.

4) What do you hope your blog will become and continue to be? I hope that my blog becomes (or continues to be) a place where any reader feels at home. I want people to see my struggles and interests and walk with God and remember that I am just another human being. I hope my blog will become somehow inspiring for people who need a way to release their minds onto a blank page. I hope that what I write continues to minister to those who need it, and inspire those who don’t. I hope I can continue to foster creativity and encouragement among my readers, and I hope that everyone can find at least one thing that I write that’s cool/inspiring/encouraging/heart-felt/and so on. I try to have fun with my blog, with what I write and how I decorate it. I hope I am continually reminded of the purpose of its existence, not using it as a place to hide, but as a place to live freely.

5) What would be different in your life if blogs didn’t exist? Life would definitely be much different… What would I do with all of my free time!? I would definitely not be on the internet as much… Or maybe I would be because Facebook might still exist? I wonder, though, what else would occupy my time; would it be a productive hobby, or some form of volunteer work? Or would it be something lazy and haphazard? I guess we’ll never know :)

| for more Blogger Autobiography archives and information on the project go HERE |

Blogger Autobiographies | Love Lola

Love Lola

I came across Lauren’s blog, Love Lola, just a little while ago and was immediately taken with the life and color in her photos! Her story, genuineness, and joy for life was all so encouraging! I am delighted to introduce her to you today and hope you find just as much encouragement and inspiration from her blog as I’ve found! :)

1) When/Why did you first start blogging? I first started blogging in 2012 right after my wedding. After spending a year planning our wedding, I was craving more creative projects to work on. This blog became a fun creative outlet for me, that has since grown into so much more.

2) Why did you choose your blog name? Lola was a nickname my close friends called me in college. I always felt it fit my personality, so that it would be a great representation of my blog, Love Lola.

3) What is the core story or purpose behind your blog? I hope to inspire others to find beauty in their life, whether it be through food or day to day living. I’m passionate about food, beautiful interiors, and photography. My hope is to share my passions with others, inspiring them to find theirs.

4) What do you hope your blog will become and continue to be? I would love for it to grow into more of a business. I am in the process of getting my RD (Registered Dietitian license) and would love to start my private practice through my blog.

5) What would be different in your life if blogs didn’t exist? I’d be less stressed :). Ha. But I’d also be less inspired. I think blogs are a beautiful thing and I’m very thankful for this internet age.

| for more Blogger Autobiography archives and information on the project go HERE |

Friday Night Rock

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Last night Justin and I went to see the farewell for now concert of the Rejectioneers, basically, we went to a rock show. We know one of the guitarists and had never been to a concert downtown before so we jumped at the chance to do something a little different, plus tickets were only $5 so we thought it worth the investment! It really was totally different, a different location, a different crowd, a different activity, a different feel, everything about it was different, well, for me at least! :)

Justin has been to his fair share of rock concerts, but I have always been a Lumineers, Fun, Michael Buble kind of girl so, needless to say, I have not been in attendance of rock shows…ever.

But last night was fun, the venue was little, the music was loud and we didn’t know too many people, but the experience was worth it! The only thing Justin and I could compare it to from our past experiences together was the 12:30am comedy show we went to in Chelsea while we were in NYC! The night life is unique for all kinds of reasons, :D

I can’t say that after last night I’ll be jumping at the chance to attend more rock concerts in the future, but it was a good night (and my hearing has since leveled back out ;) ) and it made some good memories! What more can you ask of a Friday night!

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Technology Perks

iphoto 4Recently the IT department where Justin works discarded multiple Macbooks that were too old for them to use, most of them had seen quite a bit of wear and tear and really were good for little more then the trash pile, but there was a specific, what I call, roundy edged one that was still in almost pristine condition! I had actually been eyeing it for MONTHS beforehand, it had been sitting in the IT shop for quite some time, and as soon as I heard it was actually going to be discarded I made sure that I had Justin request it, he is able to request to have any item that is being discarded. Now, to preface this story, if you know me you know I LOVE round things, pudgy things, chubby things, etc…I bought my first Macbook only months before they came out with the rounded edges version and let me tell you I was so sad that I hadn’t known to wait for it! I made up my mind then that someday, SOMEDAY, I would own a roundy edged Macbook.

Fast forward 5 years and today I officially own a roundy edge Macbook of my very own, for the exceptionally low price of $0!

Now, to be fair, it’s a ridiculously old model, but it is the one I’ve wanted for so long that I don’t even mind, PLUS with the new  operating system installed it still feels brand new! Last night Justin charged it up for the first time and we inducted it into our technology family with a brilliant photo booth session!

We sure are living the dream! :D

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One Week of Work

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Some of you may not know that I have actually had two jobs this summer. I had a job at the start of the summer, another receptionist position, at a school that I started the day after Justin and I got back from our one year trip to NYC and that I finished 3 days after Justin and I got back from our one year trip to NYC. The job experience was so terrible for me on so many different levels, some that I still don’t even understand. You wouldn’t think that 3 days at a job could affect you so poorly, but it did. Maybe I’ll write more about that experience another time, because there are actually a lot of different aspects of it that I’d like to process and think through, but for now, I write that simple summery to explain the above left picture. That is the picture that I took on my first day at my first summer job, it was taken 3 hours into training after calling Justin and completely breaking down, I took the photo to try to see if my eyes were less red enough for me to be able to go back in without appearing like I had cried as hard as I actually had. The picture on the left is the picture from my first day at my job now taken after training, lunch and a tear free phone call to Justin, the dichotomy between the two is something that I feel is important.

The choice to leave my first summer job was one that had a lot of factors wrapped up into it, but the biggest one was that it meant that I would be searching for a full time job for possibly the rest of the summer. As it turns out I did indeed search the entire summer for employment filling out numerous applications going on about 8 interviews and actually turning down an offered position, more on that if/when I write a more detailed post on the job hunt this past summer. The summer was hard, financially, emotionally, and spiritually, but I knew that at some point I would be able to look back on it with perspective, well, today is that day! :)

As of today I have officially worked at my new job for 1 week! I have been trained as a receptionist and I have also been training recently on some legal assistant work! I cried when saying goodbye to Justin in the morning 3 out of the 6 mornings, cried when I got home to see him 1 out of 6 nights, cried at work 0 out of 6 work days, slept through the night 4 out of 6 work nights and have looked forward to going to work 5 out of 6 work days! Basically, the adjustment hasn’t been without some tears, haha, but the results are beyond anything I would have expected. I know without a shadow of a doubt that I was meant to work this job, to learn these skills, and to have a career at this company. And that assurance, and the provision of peace and rest, God has given me to come to the point where I can truly realize that is a process and result that I will forever remember and appreciate!

I was telling Justin and some friends last night that I’m almost worried to say out loud how much I really like the job because I don’t want to mess it up, :) , but I truly am grateful for the people, the pacing, and the work of this position and I am finding myself really enjoying the motion of my days at this time and, I’ll just admit it, the soon-to-be coming first, and subsequent, paychecks aren’t too shabby either! ;)

All of that to say the past week has been one that has completely changed Justin and I’s life, the deed of finding a full time job is done, and now we can settle into this routine until Justin graduates and we make another family transition into a new stage! Looking to the future knowing that we have the tools to provide income for bills, travels, and fun is very reassuring, and remembering who it was that provided those means for our little family is so very humbling.

God is very good, and not just now when things have all worked out and settled down, He was good during this past summer, He was good through the tears, fears, stress and learning and I truly belief He did indeed work out all things this past summer for good and for His glory.

Romans 8:28 

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Blogger Autobiographies | Space For The Divine

Space for the Divine

Today, I am excited to introduce to you my brother David and his blog, Space For The Divine. Up till now my features focus has been on female lifestyle bloggers, but today we’re gonna change it up a bit by not only featuring the first male blogger of this series, but also showing a different side of what blogging can be useful for, in this case, an academic/theological focus!  :)

1) When/Why did you first start blogging? I first started blogging about three years ago. I had just begun my MA degree at Talbot School of Theology and I wanted an outlet for all the ideas I had that were unrelated to my classes. It turned out to be quite a welcoming space for me to go and hash out my thoughts about God, theology, and Christian living. I’m still figuring out a lot of those thoughts, but it’s fun to go back and see what I thought was important at the time.

2) Why did you choose your blog name? I chose the name Space For The Divine for several reasons. First, I wanted my blog to be a space on the Internet where God was (hopefully) displayed and honored. I wanted to “host” a place for Him; maybe a temple of sorts? Second, I wanted my blog to reflect a certain cooperation of mine with God. I wanted to think God’s thoughts with Him – but I wanted to put it down on “paper”. As I think through difficult things like the intersection of homosexuality and Christianity, gender roles, or various other culturally hot topics, I want to make space for God to speak into my reflections. I want Him to guide me and keep me chaste to His will.

3) What is the core story or purpose behind your blog? I hope to provide my readers with challenging/encouraging Christian reflection on important issues of the day. I have a background in the humanities with advanced training in theology and so I try to bring all of those influences to bear on my writing. All that aside, however, I would be pleased if someone read my blog and came away with even just a little more practical knowledge concerning how to live their daily life in response to Jesus’ powerful and loving call to discipleship. If I can do that, then I consider my blog a success!

4) What do you hope your blog will become and continue to be? I hope that the blog continue to be a place where readers can come for an honest, attentive, poignant perspective on the Christian life and things related to it. Furthermore, I hope it will become a collaborative space where others can contribute their thoughts concerning practical, theological issues. We’ll see if that hope can be realized!

5) What would be different in your life if blogs didn’t exist? I would probably spend a lot less time on the Internet! I really enjoy visiting blogs (several in particular) and catching up on what they have to say. I’m often challenged and compelled towards thoughts and actions I wouldn’t have had otherwise.

| for more Blogger Autobiography archives and information on the project go HERE |

Adjusting to Normal

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Today is my second day at work, my second day of work at a full time job.

You guys, I’m gonna be honest with you. I think this transition into full time work may be the hardest thing I have ever had to do. I like my job already, the people are friendly and helpful, the work is manageable and enjoyable and the commute is simple and easy, but the transition into realizing that my normal has suddenly changed is a lot bigger of a challenge for me then I expected.

I know it seems a little crazy, I’m sure any of you who have read along with my blog for some time now know that I am an anxious person, and for some reason my personal combination of fears and worries combine into making this step a difficult one even though the actual things included in the process are not dangerous, difficult, or scary.

Honestly, it all comes down to my inability to rest on my own. I’ve depended on my family, friends, and Justin to be the ones who give me a sense of rest for so long that I don’t think I even have the habits made to really grasp and understand the rest that God gives anytime and anywhere, a rest that supersedes any kind of peace that human company can afford. I am learning to receive that peace from God, not by anything I can do, but simply by resting enough to recognize His peace.

I am learning to sit still and rest, but I am also learning to keep living, to keep moving forward, one action, one day at a time. A lot of times when I get scared or uneasy about something I run and sometimes that saves me from things, but many times it keeps me from growing and learning to lean on Christ more. This time I’m not running, this job is worth it, this learning is worth it, and the anxiety and nervousness is temporary. Most times I make it through difficult situations because I can see an end to them, but this job, I hope, is not ending any time soon, so that mentality is anything but helpful. I don’t want to feel like this is a temporary performance and to remedy that destructive thought I have to continue to live in normal routine and stop assuming that just because my body is still learning to cope with the new doesn’t actually mean anything is wrong. I have to wake up in the morning and get ready for my day, kiss Justin goodbye, and drive to work. I have to put a picture of Justin and I on my desk and know that it’s alright to make this desk space more of my own because it is safe and it is a good.

Today is my second day of work, my eyes are swollen from crying, I’m running on too little sleep, and my stomach is refusing to agree with almost any food I eat even though I’m so hungry, BUT I am also at work, I am adjusting, I am learning, I am living, and I know that even though it is difficult in some ways right now I will learn how to embrace and enjoy this new normal and I will be able to eat and sleep again and it will be one of the greatest adventures I have ever embarked on. Right now it’s hard to tell because of the bleary eyes and growling stomach, but I am actually stronger than I’ve ever been before and with Christ as my guide, my rest, and my peace, I am only getting stronger! :)

Only My Best

Living Room Before and After

Do you see the above photographs?

In the Before shot Justin and I had just gotten home from spending the night at my parent’s house the Trader Joe’s bags on the ground were what we decided to pack in (those brown bags have SO much potential,  I swear!) and were in need of being unpacked. I had just pulled a load of wash out of the dryer which needed to be folded so onto the couch the clean clothes went so that I would be sure to remember. A variety of school books and DVDs lay strewn about from use, the couch pillows are squished from being leaned onto, and the shoes we had just kicked off are not placed neatly on the rack by the door. This is our living room in real life, you might call it our living room in process. In the process of a day, in the process of being used for what it was made for, living.

The After picture is the kind of photo I would take to upload to my blog. I would wait until the optimum natural light streamed in through the large window and would actually take the photo from the opposite side of the living room to avoid the glare from the window. I would suddenly become aware of everything that was out of place or that didn’t ‘make sense’ in the room and would immediately remedy any clutter, squished pillows or unorganized shoes, and then I would put that photo up on my blog as an example of our ‘living space’.

Do you see the problem there? Have I just shown you a genuine example of my life or have I shown you only my highly worked for and controlled best?

It is of course, my best, my most polished living room, the kind of living room I don’t have time to maintain for longer than a photograph and yet that is the room I give to any of you readers as the example of my home.

I can’t help but feel convicted that this could be a problem for both you as the reader and I as the blogger. For you, because it automatically indicates a false image of how I live my life and it is possibly the only image you might have of me, one that is not tempered with real experiences or interactions with me. And for me as a blogger because it automatically sets a standard for the way I represent my image on my blog and consequently, many times, the way I feel I must live my life. I wish my blog to represent my REAL life, but feel that the standards around me are just too different from my poor newly married state of life, so the right thing for me to do must be to adapt to displaying the images and experiences I see other successful bloggers presenting. So I adjust my home and my photographs and the telling of certain experiences to fit the mold, the minimalist, witty, adventurous mold, but then at the end of some days just feel plain tired out from playing the blogging game for so long.

I think that no matter how many times a blogger or instagrammer says, ‘my life is crazier and more difficult than my photos/posts represent’ but still crafts eloquent posts and takes particular photos, that message of them being ‘normal’ never sticks and can really just result in them seeming even less genuine.

I find the problem a difficult one to come to terms with. It’s one that makes me wonder if I should stop blogging all together because I want to be genuine to the true story of my life on my blog, but find it challenging to do so while also attempting to maintain the ‘right look’. But I then realize, again, that no matter what blogs are very, very poor representations of the human experience. I truly love blogging and blogs, but no matter how many times bloggers clarify the ‘normalcy’ of their days, their blogs will still misrepresent the humanity of their life every time.

I think in some ways it’s what readers, including myself, want. We want to see the pretty pictures, feel inspired, and have something grand to look up to, brilliant adventures to read about, and a standard of living to aspire to…but it creates such a fine line between inspiration and comparison, that so many times those two get muddled together and instead of a community of honest life, blogs become another area to have to better ourselves at, improve upon, and feel intimidated by…as if we needed any more of those areas in our lives.

This topic might just be a moot point in the end because blogging has built itself into what it is today after a good long while and a good many posts ;) But I think the concept behind freeing ourselves as bloggers and blog readers to fully understanding what blogs are good for and what they are not good for is one that could be ever so important.

I think that bloggers should continue posting the clarification posts…I think that it could still be important to refer to that truth even though the method by which it is done (blog or Instagram post) might still not get the right message across. But I also think that it could be important to keep in mind that it is more of a weighty choice to blog then it might seem. Even a blog with one follower is still speaking into another person’s life with message that should be one of truth, not a false reflection of reality and I believe that is an opportunity that should not be taken lightly.

I’m not quite sure how the balance works yet, because blogging can be a craft and it isn’t abnormal to want to succeed and do our best at a craft, but it can also quickly become an insincere outlet of information and an inaccurate representation of human experiences since blogs are not just publicized as a craft, but as a record of human life and human lives are full of a lot more than just our best. I’m still trying to fully think through the topic, whenever I’m pondering it or talking about it I seem to talk/think in circles on the pros and cons of the subject, what do you say? Any thoughts on this topic? Is it a problem or just a reality? Is it a unique aspect of blogging that is a positive or is it an area that should be improved upon?

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p.s. in other incredibly practical and joyful news, after 3 ½ months, 8 interviews, and who knows how many applications I have found a job at a law firm and I start tomorrow!! I can’t believe the time has actually come for me to be able to embark on this journey, I feel like, even though it was so hard sometimes, I needed the summer to prepare my heart and mind for full time work and now I just have an overwhelming sense that I am ready (and excited and hopeful!) for this next step!! Happy day!!! :D