Wednesday, January 11, 2006

An Open Letter to Relatives and Friends

Dear Family and Friends,

So you’re checking out this link as I begged you to…. THANKS!!

You’re undoubtedly curious why I decided to start a blog, what kind of a blog it is, or how I have time for a blog? (And the rest of you are wondering what in tarnation is a “blog”?!)

Let me bring the clueless up to speed first. “Blog” is short for “web log” or online journal (you probably knew that much). You may not have realized that there are zillions of them. Many of these are temporary sites created by businesses or other groups as a way to dialogue on a project, but others are permanent discussion forums of all types (political, religious, education, etc.). Many are online journals and may be humorous, devotional, boring or controversial. Some are just a place to post photos online.

Anybody who wants to can start up a blog, so they vary widely in quality. But some attract readers who will post comments in response to an entry, or maybe in their own blog they’ll mention someone else’s post that they agree or disagree with, and then they’ll “link” to it so you can go read it for yourself. If you start reading one blog, you’re likely to come across a link to another blog, which will take you to another blog, which might take you to the web page of news that started the whole discussion. (Then you can keep clicking “Back” to get back where you were.) It’s similar to reading magazine articles, but it’s more dynamic and conversational. Also, most blogs contain a sidebar with links to other blogs that that blogger reads or whose authors comment a lot on that site. The whole network of relationships and links is called “the blogosphere.” You can easily spend an hour or two clicking your way around a whole world you never knew existed, getting introduced to cyber-friends of friends, each with their own peculiar personalities and interests.

You don’t have to be in touch with the whole blogosphere to enjoy one blog, though. Mine is going to mostly cover the goings-on here at our house, especially anything humorous, practical, literary, educational or theological (if the husband agrees to do some “guest blogging)”. We also may excerpt from books we think are worthwhile. It will be a way to keep in touch (and I hope if you’re reading, you’ll let me know in the Comments section!). But I’m also doing it to practice the craft of writing and, hopefully, to glorify God and encourage others in their faith.

So that’s the “what” and “why.” As for the “how do you have time” question--well, I may not have time to post daily during busy seasons…I may not be able to write many long posts…but “at a hen’s pace,” I’m going to try to do what I can. In this season of life there’s so much grist for the writing mill—I’d love to write about it while I’m in the midst of it!

(As for reading other’s blogs, I don’t have time for more than a very few, and it only takes me a few minutes to read what’s new at those sites. I got interested when a homeschooling cyber-friend won an award for her blog. I happened to hear about it during the last 6 weeks of pregnancy with my youngest—so it was a time when I was looking for excuses to sit down! That’s when I did my exploring and settled on the “Blogs I Like” listed in my sidebar. There are many, many more great blogs out there, though.)

We also plan to post pictures here, so you’ll notice I haven’t used any of our real names. If you keep scrolling down, you’ll come across some pictures and a post called “Who’s Who” which explains the nicknames I’ll use for the family members. So if you leave me a Comment, don’t use our real names.

One more note: In a blog, the most recent posts come up first, so if you want to read everything in order, you have to start at the bottom of the oldest thing in the Archives (see sidebar) and start scrolling up from there.

Apologies to those who already know all about blogging and even have blogs—if so, send me a link! To those who have a little time on their hands (after reading the rest of my posts, of course!), try some of the links listed in the sidebar. Many are written by Christian homeschooling moms, but not just about homeschooling: Amy’s Humble Musings is humorous; Holy Experience is devotional; A Circle of Quiet is ahhh--peaceful. Semicolon, Brandywine Books and Mental Multivitamin are of the genre known as “lit blogs.” Zippy the Fish is a great photo blog put up by a professional photographer; Notes from a Hillside Farm is mostly photos from an Eastern Orthodox sheep farmer in Virginia (those baby lambs are so cute!).

Don’t forget to “bookmark” or add this site to your favorites, so you can pull it up again easily. And leave a comment!! (It won’t appear right away, but others will be able to read it after I hit “accept.” That’s a way to screen out spammers and weirdos.)

Please continue to pray for the employment situation, and I’ll keep you updated here!!

Grace and peace to you all--

2 comments:

maria said...

Yaay! I am SO excited that you have joined the blogosphere - and have nearly posted more than I have already. I am so excited to see how this develops! I LOVE your name-premise and the quotes you posted are great. I'm *so* excited. I'll have to start writing more ... :)

At A Hen's Pace said...

Mary--

Thanks for the encouragement!!

Yes, you WILL have to start writing more. Write about getting married!! BTW, you MUST read 40 Acres and a Poodle by Jeanne Marie Laskas, right now, while you're in engagement mode. Trust me.

Now, I don't know whether you know I responded here...so I'll email you, I guess. How does that work, otherwise?

Bless you--

Hi to Peter!