Silver and Gold: Blogging Gratitude

canstockphoto0135822I’ve been blogging long enough that there are people here I’ve exchanged comments with for years. I get a little blasé about blogging, skimming through my reader, hitting the Like button, making pithy comments. Lately, though, I’ve been feeling more gratitude and perhaps, sentiment. These familiar voices, from some people I’ve never met, have accompanied me over the years, whether they knew it or not.

I’d like to say thank you to some old friends and introduce you to a few new ones.

canstockphoto11405315.jpgMy friend, Ross over at Drinking Tips for Teens wrote a touching and funny post this week about giving up drinking. He’s a Canadian humorist with heart. Thanks to his CBC “Breakaway” broadcasts (his first album is a classic), I know what his actual voice sounds like and can now read all his comments in that voice, instead of with a faux French accent or a patois that includes “hoser” and “eh” at the end of every sentence. Which is how I read anything written by Canadians. Sorry, eh?

In regards to Canadians, I’d like to say thank you to Fransi over at 365 and Counting. She comments early and often, which kicks off some great conversational threads and I really appreciate that. She’s currently working on a memoir and blogs about a wide range of subjects, including getting fired up about American politics. It’s an unhealthy spectator sport at this juncture, but we need all the friends we can get.

canstockphoto1542595Alison over at Adventures in Wonderland, always adds to the conversation. While she doesn’t know it, I think of her as one of my Zen people – someone who shows us a life well-lived. She has a wonderful blog with her husband, Don, as they document traveling the world with wonderful descriptions and photographs. They did a lovely interview at HuffPo – it was great to see and hear them.

Bill and I have exchanged emails over our writing and the challenges of being gainfully unemployed. His writing appealed to me right from the start at pinklightsabre and his travels with his family over the last six months have added further dimensions. He’s one of those people who unintentionally challenges me to read harder and write better.

John (Pastor John Coleman) at A Napper’s Companion is a kind commenter and brings a valued mindfulness to his blog. He wrote a book a couple of years ago, which sits on my reading table: Your Grandmother Raised Monarchs and Other Wonders Before Your Time. It’s a narrative to his grandson and I enjoyed the gentle vignettes about life as a pastor. For me, it also serves as a reminder that the extremist religion we now see in public life is not representative of all religion or of all Christians.

I’d like to thank a couple of real life friends, one of whom I’ve known for years and another who stepped out of the ether world into my real one.

My friend, Kiri, over at The Dust Season has evolved with me over the years, especially in the last few as we try to carve out space for our writing, in spite of ourselves. She’s a science fiction writer with several book drafts under her belt, a penchant for wordplay and an ability to make me laugh at the darkest things.

Sandy came into my world despite my online antisocial antics and vitriol against hugs. She’s a creative, wise person with a warm heart and a great sense of humor. She writes about her life living with bipolar disorder over at A Mind Divided. She is hitting the road with her artistic cards, but her Etsy shop will reopen on April 16th.

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There are so many new and interesting writers and readers who I’ve “met” over the last few months, that there would not be enough space to share them all here. But I’d like to start somewhere.

Kim at Wobblenot.com blogs about a wide range of subjects for well-being and a balanced life. I enjoyed her post The Worst Obituary I’ve Ever Read. From her comments alone, she strikes me as an engaged and engaging person.

Dave at A Nomad in Cyberspace writes about a wide range of topics. I enjoy writers who can traverse culture under a unifying theme, as evidenced in We Can Be Together.

Lisa at Lisa Pomerantzster: Are We There Yet? is a mentsch and a yiddisher kop, which I learned by going to the Yiddish links on her site. She is one of two moms, raising two girls and writes about parenting, liberal rants and does it all with a sense of humor.

Jim at Snippets of a Traveling Mind started blogging in the fall of 2015, in order to share his travel experiences during his retirement years. As a yoga practitioner and retired teacher, his posts reflect curiosity and thoughtfulness.

I’m going to stop there, because my novel is not, despite my fondest wishes, going to finish itself.

Thank you to new friends and to my continuing friends.

You have my gratitude and I look forward to conversations in the year ahead!

53 Comments on “Silver and Gold: Blogging Gratitude

  1. Thanks so much Michelle! Thanks to blogging I have met some wonderful, bright, interesting, talented writers (of which, needless to say, you are one) and I am grateful and amazed at the relationships we can form without ever meeting each other. I now have a new list of blogs to visit, which I will do. Talk to you soon again … 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve been so dug in this winter that I’m exceedingly grateful for the connections I have here. They’ve kept me from getting too cabin “feverish”. I’m so glad that you’re picking up steam on your memoir – it’s exciting when writing fervor hits us. Best wishes to you, Fransi and thanks again.

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  2. Thanks so much for the comments, Michelle, and the links to these fine people. I find myself fairly ho-hum about reading posts these days, though, like you, there are people I turn to and hear from over and over. I guess blogging is like high school; when you first arrive, you want to be friends with everyone, but eventually you settle into your group. I’ll be checking these folks out.

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    • You’re right – we do kind of settle into our groups. I think this is why I keep trying to reach out to newer bloggers, as well as introducing them to my favorites. Blogging can sometimes feel a little clique-ish when people have been doing it for awhile.
      Regardless, Ross, I do appreciate that you’re still out there, writing and sharing your sense of humor – we all need a little more of that these days.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Well done. (The graphic was my first attraction) I read your post. As a foody, I get great simple recipes (in blogs I follow) that I would never had thought about. I make comments to show I care and how much their contribution meant to me. Not pithy….just a good, honest ‘high sign’ of appreciation. Good day to you!

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    • When I first started blogging, I subscribed to so many blogs that it was impossible to keep up. I’ve settled down now and try to keep the number reasonable, so that I have time to read them. Thanks for taking the time to read and comment. Best wishes on your blogging journey!

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  4. I have not been on blogging or reading much lately — life and work schedules are full these days, but glad I happened to stop by today. Added Adventures in Wonderland to my Reader already — wonderful virtual travel partner! And I look forward to exploring more of the blogs you featured as time permits. Always enjoy your thoughts, Michelle!

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    • Thanks, Kat. Being able to blog does tend to ebb and flow with life. After a disappointing winter (I like my snow), I’m looking forward to open windows and gardening, which also seems to infuse my blogging energy just a bit. Hope all is well with you!

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      • Yes, I am hoping this early spring is not a false hope and that as long as we’re not having good recreating snow during winter, it doesn’t dump on us this spring! Last bird graduates from high school this spring …. perhaps I will find more time for blogging in the fall as he heads off to college!

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  5. Thank you, Michelle! I see you as a model. You write honestly about challenges and triumphs, and your words always resonate. I only started blogging in the past year, and I count you as one of my ‘group’, as Ross puts it. I look forward to when I can look back on years of remote, online friendship with this organically grown little tribe. Lots of shiny treasures here! 🙂

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    • Thanks, Catherine. I like that phrase “organically grown little tribe”. It’s so funny when people talk about the demise of blogging and yet there is a lot of life here and around the blogosphere – people coming and going and renewing and letting go. With all the change, I’m glad that I can still read familiar voices, but it is a shifting demographic. I’m glad you’ve joined it and look forward to our “conversations” in the years to come!

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  6. This is a generous and painstaking post – thanks for the mention and compliment – I shall follow up each of your links with interest. An exercise like this confirms the depth of talent and humanity that is out there. Can a better world be far behind?

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    • I laughed when you described it as painstaking. It does tend to be a lot of work, but worth it to be able to introduce other blogs and help make connections that might otherwise not be made. It is a favorite blogging thing of mine when people say to a blogger, “I found you through The Green Study”. That is incredibly cool. Best wishes to you, Dave and your continued blogging.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Great line up of blogs to sample! Also, best to you for finishing your novel!

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  8. Well, you connected me to Ross directly or indirectly and I still remember when we hooked up here. It’s been a real pleasure and you, a real inspiration Michelle. You’re on my list as I hunt down bloggers I need to meet in person. Thank you for the recognition and shout out. Warmly, Bill

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    • You’re on my list as well, Bill. I’ve never enjoyed writing workshops or groups, so finding people who inspire and/or engage on writing is critical and you’re one of those people for me. Plus, and I figure you’ll get the right gist from this, I like other odd ducks. Quack, quack, my friend.

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    • That’s the thing about blogging – if it were only about the writing, well, there would be no comment section and I’d have notebooks piled to my ceiling. It is about the engagement and other bloggers and readers make all the difference in the world in this experience. Best wishes to you!

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  9. Michelle, your posts are always a pleasure to read. Imagine my surprise at the generous shout-out. Sweet!! Thank you! This was a very thoughtful post and a great introduction of other blogs to me (and your other readers) as well.

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  10. Michelle: Like you , I look forward to reading a variety of amazing blogs each day . Thanks for acknowledging my contributions Jim

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  11. I feel like I made the “A” Band cut! (Gawd, some things follow us forever—like sitting first chair alto sax in “B” Band. The horror! The shame!)

    Anyhoo, I don’t remember how I stumbled across The Green Study, but it was a momentous match of snark, kind-heartedness and skewed POV. I won’t go sappy in public, but I think you know how much you mean to me.
    ( ) Big Air Hug

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  12. Hey Michelle,
    Silver and Gold indeed! I am a fairly new follower and blogger in my own right, yet I hope to be included next time you decide to post on the value of the coins, beyond just the currency!
    Cheers, and here’s to a lookin’ up 2016!

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  13. I enjoy posts like this one so much. I love to meet new bloggers and nothing is better imho than to be introduced by a blogger who I already adore. Thanks for doing this.

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    • Thanks, Ally – you’re one of the blogs on my list, but I had to keep the post down to a few for now. I’ll be doing more blog promotion as the year goes by – it’s part of the fun of blogging, to facilitate connections and continue to help build a sense of community in a world where community seems fragile.
      I started laughing after I wrote this comment. I need to start my own nonprofit and have a PBS telethon. Geez, Michelle, let’s keep it real. It’s just a blog.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Your point of view is delightful! I agree that we need to do more to foster connection, but will admit that I’ve not been the best at doing more to promote other bloggers. I’ll do better in the future.

        [And please note, if you do have a telethon, you can count me in to answer the phones as those donations come rolling in. 😉 ]

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  14. I love it when the blogs I follow give a nod to their favorites! Gratitude and appreciation are paramount to me and your writing is something I truly aspire to. Thank you for marrying both in this post. 💜Sending gratitude and no warm body hugs…cause that’s not your thing 😉

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    • I always find these posts tough to do – there’s so many interesting people and bloggers out there, that I would never have the time to write summaries and provide links to them all. Although, it doesn’t mean I won’t give it a try! Thanks for your kind words.

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  15. Wow, Michelle, thank you so much. I do feel honoured. I love reading your blog – your writing has an eloquence and depth that I can only hope for. You’re on my list of bloggers that I read in the hope that through reading it I’ll become a better writer. (I think it’s working :))
    Alison

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  16. Thanks, Michelle! Once again you’ve introduced me to some great blogs and bloggers. You have been a wealth of inspiration in so many ways. What a wonderful community!

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    • I’m very glad to be able to have some time now to promote more blogs. It does tend to take longer than a regular blog post because of the links. But every connection I can help facilitate feels like accomplishment.

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  17. Such a warm, generous blog post, Michelle. I’m grateful to be among your tribe–and to know my little book is in sight. You should know that The Green Study is always at the top of my reading list. And you’ve inspired me: sometime soon I should post about the blog community that is such wonderful, affirming company. Peace, John

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    • Thanks for your kind words, John. I’ve come to believe in the value of all connections, no matter how slight or how digital. Every connection makes the world seem less hostile than how it seems at times.

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