Six in Internet Years Makes This Blog Older Than My Dog {Special Deal}

When I started this blog six years (!) ago, I was looking for community. I desperately wanted to discover that my everyday loud, crazy life was normal.

I wanted the comfort of knowing we weren’t the only accident-prone family who had a frequent shopper card at the ER.

I wanted to connect, to spill out my heart and most of all, I wanted to find you.

I didn’t know when I hit publish on that first post half a dozen years ago, that it would change my life. I didn’t know it would bring out the dormant writer in me and I would have never dreamed it would give me the opportunity to connect moms here with moms there.

I’m glad I didn’t know how beautiful or how scary life would be for this introverted momma.

And around this time of year, I like to pause and celebrate this space with you.

My little girl is six. She feels really big, but I’m old enough to see she’s still a baby. But my dog is also six and she’s starting to sleep a lot more and leak urine when she’s excited.  We all know six in dog years is really more like 42.

I’m *this close* to 42. Do you see where this is going?

Blog years are like dog years and so let’s just hope the rest of us don’t leak, okay?

So, dear ________ (insert your name here), thank you for reading. If you didn’t, this would be a diary and not a community.

To help us celebrate, Dayspring is offering this very special, very good deal on one of my very favorite pieces of art, Rejoice in Him – Sculpted Art Panel to my readers:

rejoice

FOR ONLY $6 each. It’s enough to make you get excited (resisting the urge to make another urine comment):

I love this (heavy) carved, beautifully painted wooden piece of art! The Rejoice wooden panel regularly $48 and you can get them for nearly 87% off (affiliate link included). These would make a fantastic gift for teachers, friends and family this upcoming holiday season.

rejoiceinhim_plaque_2-1

Plus, if you spend over $50 at Dayspring, you get FREE SHIPPING. If you purchased 8 of these, you could clear out your shopping list early! The coupon will be valid for two weeks- Monday, September 30-Monday, October 14 at midnight CST.  There is no limit on how many your readers can purchase. Here’s the coupon: WATFbirthday6

So,  happy 6 blog years to me and to you!

And thanks for being such a big part of my life.


And Then My Blog Turned Five Years Old {Party!}

UPDATE: Congratulations Donna Livingston you are the lucky winner!

In the 8th grade, my Language Arts teacher, Mrs. Abernathy, a heavy, somewhat grumpy teacher, peered over her glasses and  told me  (without smiling) that I was a good writer. It took just those few words of encouragement for me to decide I wanted to grow up and be a writer someday. She was my favorite teacher–not so much for what she taught me, but for simply believing in me when I didn’t really believe in myself.

Eventually, my love for writing (many rejected manuscripts, critique groups and writer’s conferences later) morphed into blogging when I was 34 years old.

Today this space turns five years old. 5. That’s half a decade.

And the best part of blogging isn’t a platform or occasional free stuff, it’s you, the reader. Because an unread blog is just a diary. But when you take the time to laugh, cry and dream with me, we change the world, my friends.

What I’m trying to say is, I love you. We make a great team. Let’s do another 5 years, shall we?

In honor of you, I’m giving this WATF Reader Appreciation “Basket” to one blessed reader. Your comment entry:  Tell me why you read here.

Basket contents:

Valued $200

NOW SOLD OUT

AND, SUPER BIG, AMAZING DEAL in honor of 5 years, Dayspring is offering one of my top favorite items for ONLY $5<———insane price!

Ever Grateful – Memo Board with Easel for only $5!

It’s valued at $34.99 and makes a fantastic gift. {Christmas is coming!} There is no limit on how many you can purchase (while supplies last) and shipping does apply, but you get FREE shipping for spending $50 or more. So, basically, you can knock off ten people on your Christmas list for $50 and get a value of $349.90. Amazing, huh? This deal expires Oct.15 , but supplies won’t last long. Use code at checkout: WATFmemo

Don’t forget to leave a comment for the basket and then grab this deal. I just ordered 5 for $25. Merry Christmas to all the teachers in my life!

*Dayspring Affiliate links

Happy birthday to us.


Welcome Home

Well. I did it.

I moved my blog to WordPress! (Actually, Darcy of Graphically Designing, a highly qualified friend o mine did all the work with some behind-the-scenes kudos to Lisa Boyd. I just ate bonbons).

And bless her heart because did you know that moving 50 THOUSAND comments over is not an easy task? It’s is also made more difficult when the blog writer has uploaded every picture for over two years in the largest format. Oops. But let’s not talk about all my faults. Let’s focus on my new workspace.

I’m still learning the ropes, but I can already say, I love it here! Poke around and make yourself at home while I work out the bugs and update the links. Visit Darcy over at Graphically Designing, too.

My real life friends over at Eleven2 are hosting my blog. (Up until a month ago, I thought a host was someone who wears an apron. It’s a wonder I have a blog, y’all. Seriously, low tech over here). Anywho, they are an amazing homegrown business with AWESOME customer service, great attitudes and cool widgets. Okay, I made up the widget part, but it sounded high tech, didn’t it?

In honor of my switcheroo, Eleven2 is offering YOU a free month of hosting on any of their accounts. Just enter this code at checkout: wearethatfamily

It expires: Never.

xoxo


BlogHer Conference 2009

I will be leaving my family on the last day of Family Camp early tomorrow morning.
And thanks to UPrinting, my BlogHer Conference sponsor, I’m flying to Chicago.
I’ve never been. It’s one of my many firsts.
And I’m totally nervous.
(I’m freaked out about the  enormous blogging conference and getting lost on the “L” (whatever that is. I just know my hubby told me six 6 SIX people died in Chicago yesterday, so I better be careful.))
I love the opportunities that blogging has opened up for me. Thanks UPrinting for taking a chance on me. 
I feel like a grown up.
And like a wall flower at the junior high dance.
But I’m wearing these shoes.
And I have a stash of Hello Kitty band aids for the inevitable blisters.
So, seriously, how bad can it be?
Okay, for this introvert, it can be bad! And that’s why I’m stashing my two dear friends in my hotel room with me. (Thanks girls, for going with me!!)
You can follow my anxious Tweets here
(This is the gathering of thousands of bloggers…do you have a favorite? Let me know in the comments and I’ll try to get a twitpic of the back of their head! Because wallflowers don’t ask for photographs!)



When Blogging Turns Ugly

I like to hang out on Twitter.
It’s a nice place to get to know people more intimately in this huge blog world.
Lately, I’ve been reading a lot of tweets about ugly blogging. Mom bloggers bad-mouthing other Mom bloggers.
I’m hardly in the know, but I think it has something to do with intertwining product reviews, PR pitches and free trips in with family stories instead of posting those items on a separate review blog of sorts.
Or maybe it’s about so-and-so having a bigger house and driving a nicer car. That’s what the moms on the school porch talk about.
And then again, it could be about you-know-who at recess taking my best friend from me. That’s what my 9 year old daughter complains about.
Frankly, I think it’s the age-old girl problem.
It probably won’t go away.
I’ve talked about being an extrovert on my blog and an introvert in real life. But sometimes in this blogworld, I feel disconnected. I feel like an island. 
I’m usually the last to learn of such matters. I like to stay out of blog conflict. I don’t know the details. I don’t know the names. And I don’t want to. It’s not that I don’t have an opinion either way. I do. I clearly welcome PR pitches (hello, Chick Fil A, we need to talk about unlimited sweet tea).  I’m extremely selective and you won’t see a lot of it here. 
Because that’s not why I blog. 
(But if that is why you blog, then wear those shoes proudly).
It’s important to me to maintain who I am. I can’t pretend to write about something I don’t care about. 
And that’s really the point I’m getting at, why do you blog? 
Define that for yourself.  I’m finding that even though I’m open to marketing that fits me, the amount of offers and enticements and distractions grow everyday. And that’s why it’s important for me to remember that if it’s just me and my keyboard (like it was a year and a half ago), I do this for me. I want to be proud of what I contribute to the blogworld.
So whatever you decide to be, be your best. And give other bloggers (and neighbors with bigger things and girls on the playground) a chance to be themselves. We are all unique. Every blog is different.
But please remember that every word you publish is making an impact. The good and the bad.
And the ugly.