It is hard to believe, but I have been blogging for two years! This is my 215th blog post ... not counting all those that I never finished for one reason or another (or the ones I finished, but didn't have the guts to publish). It is funny to me how blogging has changed my perspective on everyday things. I take far more pictures than I ever have before, even if I haven't used any of them on this blog lately. Little things that the kids do and say almost always spark some thought about how I could blog what they are doing. I have noticed that lately I am not as good about posting those little things as I used to be. As much as I enjoy blogging, I just haven't had the time for it lately.
Still, I started blogging as an outlet for writing. I enjoy writing and truly find it therapetic, to borrow a term from Barney Fife. Of course, blogging isn't just about writing my own posts, it is just as much about reading posts on other blogs. I have been amazed to realize how many normal, everyday people blog. One of the unexpected aspects of blogging for me is the fact that I feel like I know the authors of some of the blogs I read simply because of their candor in sharing their lives. I haven't been successful in being that transparent with my blog, not because I want people to think that everything is all sunshine and roses in my life, but because I just can't figure out how to share some things without feeling as though I am giving more information than any of you could possibly want to know about my life.
Blogging has brought unexpected blessings into my life that I never could have imagined. Besides being a creative outlet for me, it has brought me closer to several other homeschooling moms in the area and allowed us to form real friendships. These ladies have become very dear to me and I am thankful for what we share, both in the blogging community and in real life. In a way, I could attribute my place in our new homeschool group simply to this blogging thing ... but that is a story for another day.
If I had to choose what I have learned most from blogging, I think my answer would be simple ... gratitude. As I have spent time reading other blogs, I have learned to recognize the small blessings in my own life. Sometimes that happens because the author is intentionally pointing the reader in that direction, but just as often it comes by seeing the pain and struggle that people face. For the most part, I lead a fairly sheltered life and sometimes I am just stunned by the things that people go through. Not only has this exposure forced me to realize just how blessed I am in the things I have had to deal with, it has helped me to realize that I don't always handle adversity in the way that I should.
When I sit down to blog these days, I am finding myself more and more drawn to sharing something uplifting ... more directly stated, I want to point anyone reading my words to the Savior. I don't have the opportunity to come into contact with many people outside of my little circle, so in a sense, this is my mission field. Of course, most of the people who stop by here on a regular basis are probably already Christians. Still, we all need encouragement from time to time and my goal is to be used to provide that for anyone reading this blog. I have been encouraged more than I can express by some of the blogs I read on a regular basis and I guess I am feeling challenged to pass that encouragement along to the next person.
All in all, I am truly thankful for what this blog has come to symbolize in my life ... a place to share what God is doing in my life and in the the life of my family, not to mention, a place to connect with others in a way that wouldn't have been possible even just a few years ago. I do appreciate those of you who come here and read my ramblings. I am still not sure why you're here, but I sure do hope you keep coming back for the next 215 posts!