7 Mar 2012

Should I stop blogging?

I was going to call this post 'I've lost my blogging mojo', only I thought I'd better google 'mojo' to find out its exact definition, and I'm glad I did, because mojo doesn't mean what I thought it did at all, even though I can use the word in a sentence perfectly well. Phew. So that's good.

Those of you who follow A Peaceful Day on Facebook (If you would like to, the link is here, and I'd be super excited if you would), will know that I've been considering whether it might be time to give up writing my blog.

Although I have some really dear, sweet, loyal commenters, it seems that the once vibrant conversation has been dwindling, and that makes me sad. I don't seem to have the energy or inclination to get out there and trawl the net for new followers when I don't have time to visit my bloggy pals as it is. My FB pals say that I should just write for myself, but I'm afraid I really don't write for me - I try and write for you.

I first started my blog because I thought I had something worthwhile to contribute. I am passionate about many things, and I thought that I might be able to pass that enthusiasm on to others. I love Ambleside Online, and I felt that my Australianised version might help other Aussies who were considering using it for their kiddos and who didn't want to reinvent the wheel and make it all fit together. I adore Australian Living Books - children's and adult's, old and recent - and I wanted to be able to make recommendations, without telling other people what they should or shouldn't read. (Okay, I love all books, regardless of their country of origin, I admit it.) I love chatting about travel and geography and history and food and gardens and homemaking and crochet and knitting and raising my covenant child in the Reformed faith, and I thought that this might make my blog interesting to some.

And so, on 4th September 2008, I wrote my first post. My first commenter was the wonderful Michelle, from Homeschooling Downunder a month or so later. I can still remember how excited I was when I read her encouraging remarks. I think that those early posts - the ones nobody read - were amongst my best. I was full of passion and enthusiasm, and I think it shows.

After that I settled into a kind of rhythm of blogging most days. It was a commitment, but one that I felt really motivated to put the effort into. I came to know some wonderful people, many who I now count as my dear friends, and I soon realised how much I had to learn about homeschooling, and what a wonderful resource the homeschool blogging community really was. They were my glory days, really.

When the flood came in January 2011, everything ground to a standstill. For a year I worked full time reestablishing our family business as well as educating Jemimah. Blogging dwindled to twice a week if I was lucky, mostly fitted in late as night, and our damaged computer made visiting other blogs really difficult. My cameras were stolen and I could no longer take decent photographs. I could no longer talk about my lovely home or our garden, or cooking or decorating or any of that yummily delicious stuff because...well... I just can't do that stuff any more until we get our home repaired, and that's gunna take time. Lots of time. It is little wonder that my followers began looking for scintillating content somewhere other than here. Hey, I understand, I really do.

I also get that it's not all about me. Lots of people that I call my friends no longer blog, and I miss them. I go down the lists in my sidebars, and a considerable number of the blogs that I used to read regularly haven't been updated in months. It's sad, and I really hate losing contact with some of those girls.

So anyhow, during the last week or so I've been prayerfully pondering my options. And just today I've decided that I think I'll keep blogging a while longer.

There are three things that helped me decide. One was a visit to the CMand Friends - ANZ Yahoo Group, where I discovered a group of ladies I don't know talking about A Peaceful Day's Australianised AO curriculum. That made me feel much better to know that people were actually using what I was doing. Secondly, my dear friend, Chef Penny from Our Crazy Adventures in autismland mentioned that she was going to use AO for her lovely daughter partly because it had worked for me. Imagine my name uttered in the same sentence as Tammy Glaser. Really! Finally I received a lovely email from my now-real-life-but-formerly-bloggy-pal Sarah. Sarah has always been one of my greatest encouragers, and the words she wrote, apart from making me cry, helped me to come to the decision that I like what I do, and that I'd really miss blogging if I stopped. I like having this secret life that my local friends don't know about, and I really like helping others, and I really love my cyberspace friends.

Which brings me to the tentative name I mentioned for this post. I seem to be having a bit of a problem with angoisse de la page blanche - a massive case of writer's block. It was the fact that I've spent too many hours staring at a blank screen that made me consider quitting blogging in the first place.

Help me girls! If you think it is worthwhile me continuing to blog, then what would you like me to write about? What erudite pearls of wisdom would you like me to impart?

Next post I'm going to tell how Jemimah and came to be watching Mickey Mouse cartoons tonight during our Mummy-Daughter film night, but you'll already know that if you've liked our page on Facebook anyhow. After that, then who knows. Any ideas?

Thank you to those of you who do make the time to leave an encouraging comment. It helps a lot. Ganeida, Ruby, Sarah, Rosemary, Mel, Erin, Therese, Jo, Rebecca...okay,I'm going to stop now while there are still lots of names to go in case I hurt somebody...you're all wonderful. I so appreciate you all. Thanks.


  1. So glad you got that sorted♥

  2. Keep writing! I don't comment much, but I read your posts on my reader!

  3. Well, seeing as you asked...☺

    I too dislike losing bloggy friends & the chatty comments ~ but it seems to happen. I haven't the time or inclination to drum up a new set of readers ~ though they too seem to arrive periodically.

    However I think I will email you the rest of what I think because I don't wnat to scare anyone. lol Maybe tomorrow after I find Ruby's recipe that I promised her.

  4. Keep going as long as you still enjoy it yourself! I always like hearing about our ten-year-old's Australian counterpart, and about the books you are using--but generally it's just been nice getting to know you through your blog!

  5. As I hop around blogland, I find that most blogs don't get comments anymore. I think most bloggers have established their friendships by now and chat on facebook or through email. That doesn't mean we don't still read and enjoy other blogs. I think a lot of us have decided being Mom (or whatever) deserves more time than commenting on everyone's blog. I've lost almost all of my old commenters. I also assume I've lost their readership, but maybe not. For what it's worth. I enjoy your blog and read it when I get the chance.

  6. I'm one of those who usually lurks around blogland, usually just because I can get through several blogs in a little time rather than feeling guilty for being on the computer so much when I should be homeschooling, cleaning, transcribing, etc. So please don't stop unless that's what you want to do! I love your blog. I first heard of AO through you, and even though my oldest girl isn't in the same year, I love seeing what's coming up. I love your book recommendations and your posts with pictures of your home library. I love hearing about your adventures with your girl and the music that makes you happy. So you have my vote anyway... :)

  7. I don't always comment but I LOVE your blog and your enthusiasm for life, learning, and Charlotte Mason. I feel like I learn so much coming here! You are an excellent writer as well...it would be a shame to loose you!


  8. Jeanne,
    I think all of us go through this struggle. I'd be very disappointed to see you leave this place, and I love reading about your daily life, your homeschooling wisdom, your love for the LORD. My vote is keep on keepin' on. :) Praying that you'll have wisdom and peace, my friend.

  9. It is hard to keep blogging up all the time. Sometimes we just burn out. And it seems blogging is becoming less cozy and more commercialized. BUT every time I walk away from blogging, I wind up thinking of a million things I want to blog about. Maybe my inability to walk away forever is a good indication that I am blogging for me. :)

    Your blog is wonderful and I love it. I'm agreeing with Pam, I read more than I comment just because I'm trying to limit my time online. As the kids get older I'm spending more and more time teaching.

  10. Hi! I haven't commented here before and rarely comment on any blogs, but I was delighted when I stumbled upon your blog (via Mama Squirrel's blog I think). I too have a 5th grader and we are integrating CM more and more and the old school of teaching less and less. I love hearing of your adventures and the books you read and how you school, and the differences between Australia & Canada, and..... I would be sad to see you stop blogging. Ultimately, yes you need to obey God but I hope & pray that means you'll continue to blog! (BTW, I'm one of those people who is rebelling against using FB so I don't make connections with people that way. Your blog is appreciated!)

  11. I am another 'lurker', but I do check in to your blog frequently as I enjoy seeing what other CM homeschooling families do. I've particularly enjoyed the Australian perspective in your blog - Australia holds a special place in my heart because all 3 of my childre were born there (while we were working as missionaries in Papua New Guinea) and we have some very dear Australian friends. Obviously you need to do what is best for you, but know that there is at least one more person out there that would be sad to see A Peaceful Day go.

  12. I think the thrill of interacting with the author is gone. When blogs were new everyone and their brother commented. Today, while my own blog page views are still where they were I get far fewer comments.

    There are also more avenues open for quick public communication, like Twitter and Instagram and others.

    Personally I love your blog!

  13. I think you and your blog are the bomb-diggity, Jeanne! :)

  14. I'm glad you are staying. Please do so. I always read you, even if I'm not able to comment, as I say, I always find wisdom, fun, and a great time reading all you have to say.

    I've thought about closing the bog too, I see others as you say who do, some come new... at the end of the day, even when I write a post with all my heart and brains to receive no comments in it, I get that email, that comment, that word that makes me cry and that encourages me beyond believe.

    What could you write about? I can't help you with specifics, any, anything you decide I enjoy in different degrees.

    Love and appreciation.

  15. I'm always happy when your updates hit Goggle reader, so I'd miss you.

    But whether your blog is a blessing to you right now or now, I don't know. You've certainly got a lot of energy drains at the moment, so one less schedule might help. Are you the sort of person who can let go of something knowing that it's not forever? Scale back to once a week or so? Or an all or nothing girl? Have you ever stopped another hobby? How did you feel about it?

    That's probably not much help. oh well.

  16. You just about stopped my heart--I thought you were going to stop! I'm glad you're not.

    If you're looking for ideas, I'd love to hear about your time outside, what you do for nature study, how your garden is growing, the books you are reading--especially the Japanese fiction (The Devotion of Suspect X was a thrilling read)--, your ideas and plans for repairing your home, vacation plans you're taking, what you're doing this weekend, the things you enjoy cooking in the kitchen. And you could also share about your amazing history with Mr Peaceful Day and how you came to be at an embassy ball in Saudi Arabia? That's kind of unusual and something that doesn't happen for everyone. So many stories to tell!

  17. it is hard to keep your "real" life private ,if you don't say reasonably anonymous. So then it leaves what this blog is really about - homeschooling
    Like any schooling it is cyclical ... and after a few years some what predictable.... blog when you do have something to say... does not have to be daily... then go use the time to spend in your "real" life - which is probably missing out from you blog time... then share the little things on your Facebook.
    People who follow a blog for a time eventually get to know the "on-line" persona of the blogger well enough not to ask so many questions. So just like the embassy question above - how do you keep expanding what you share without compromising the anonymity of you, your family and close friends??? Even your daughter, as she gets older may become uncomfortable, to be identified in this cyber world.
    Blogs that are openly shared on the internet - are exactly that open to the world- you have no idea who reads them. -I can see that at the beginning you shared a lot more about your family and where you live - to the point where I must say I was getting concerned that even tho' you tried to keep your true identity anonymous; if anybody truly wanted to know who you were and which weekends your beautiful house was empty for intruders it would not have been difficult.
    My advise would be - ask yourself what was lacking in your life that you had time to put so much up here, and what do you have in you life now that obviously fills that space.
    Blog when you have something on homeschooling to share to the open cycler world if that was what the blog was set up for.
    Make your Facebook you more personal cyber space where you can be better indentified and share the more personal things that identify you - with those you know and truly trust well enough because you actually know who you are
    Personal security is priority for both the blogger and those referred to in the block.

  18. As you know I love and appreciate how you have Australianised AO. You have a breadth of knowledge regarding Australian literature and resources that has enabled me to give Lucy an education that is appropriate for a little Australian.
    As well as that I have learnt about places I would not have otherwise eg. Zetta Florence. You have helped me to make reality of what are often vague ideas in my head.
    I would miss your blog terribly. Even though I rarely comment I read every post, checking daily to see if there is anything new.
    Despite all this you need to do what God wants you to do.
    You could be the one who gets me into facebook. My children would then call you a miracle worker.
    Thanks for letting us into your life.

  19. Oh, I'm so glad you're going to keep blogging :)
    Like others have said, I'm glad to know you, and i know you because of your blog :)

    I'd love to hear what you and Jemimah think of Sally's Story - only because I don't think you'll really like it. I think Sally Morgan does a good job of telling her mother and grandmother's stories in My Place, but her own story was, to me, quite rambly and uninteresting. There were things she mentions in passing that I'd have loved to know more about, but she doesnt explain - particularly her faith story (she marries a Christian, is she one too?). If I was to recommend it I would tell someone just to read the three biographies inside the story but to skip Sally's story.

  20. I just finished emailing a friend to encourage her not to give up on homeschooling. I shared this Bible verse with her:
    Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. (Gal 6:9).
    I'm going to share it with you too Jeannie.
    There is no doubt that your blog is sharing wisdom and joy with readers somewhere out there in blogland. (I know I enjoy reading your blog but I'm a terribly slack commenter. I'm sorry.) I look at my own blog as maybe a gift to someone out there looking (it helps that I love the giving/writing part). When we give a gift we don't expect a reward but it's true, it's nice to be thanked occasionally. Thank you for your blog Jeannie. You inspire and motivate me (and you cause my bank balance to groan with new book suggestions. Hehehe). Please keep blogging. Facebook is no substitute for blog land. It's like giving a gift voucher instead of a real gift. I look forward to your gifts of wisdom and insight, humour and struggle, and even your everyday bits and bobs. The blog world would mourn your loss. I know my heart skipped a beat when I saw your post title.

  21. I can hear you laughing this morning dear Jeanne with 20 comments so far and I'm the 21st...hehe! I think you should keep writing about all your passions, all those things that bring this blog alive because it makes you alive and that permeates throughout your writings. Just keep being 'YOU' and all that makes you! xxx

  22. I for one am SOO pleased you are still blogging. When I saw your header my heart sank, thinking you were saying goodbye, when I read your conclusion I smiled for joy:):) You have much to offer the hsing blogging community in particular sharing our Aussie heritage (and books of course;) and it is a community, sometimes the comments are slow but the readers are there.
    btw I;m not on fb so I'd miss your sharing if you were no longer blogging:(
    I'd love to have more book chat of course:) Let's dig deep into Australian genre.

  23. No, no, no, noooooo!!!!! Not stop!

    Phew! Yes! Still going!

    I'm sorry! I apologise! So very selfish of me to glean so much from you and not give back.

    Besides, I send LOTS of people to your treasure trove and it would be really BAD if it weren't here anymore!

    The thing I like most in your blog is your day to day life. Issues, homeschooling questions, world events - I love to hear your perspective on all of them, but its you, yourself, and what you get up to that make the blog enjoyable.

    I check in most days, hoping for an update.

  24. Oh, and I NEVER check fb, so please don't drop this for that!

  25. Just came over to read the responses. I don't get follow up emails from your comments, Jeanne. Is that the way it is set? I see I can subscribe to comments? Not sure how to do that but I'll sus it out. Most blogs you get the follow ups and I find that interesting, especially if I want to reply to something said.

  26. sorry dear Jeanne i'm one of the naughty people who has stopped blogging, it's just seasons and cycles. I don't get to check blogs as often as I used to but I do still read yours when I get the chance and am glad you are not abandoning it :-)

  27. Please don't stop! Out of all the blogs on my sidebar, yours is one of the few that I always read when there is a new post. I always read, seldom comment. Had it not been for you and your blog, I might never have discovered Hiroshige, Totoro (well maybe that one I would have), the Tapper Lives of the Musicians series, or Blinky Bill.

  28. Blogging is a funny thing isn't it? I have actually have had little desire to blog this last month or to read other people's blogs. But that may change later on in the year. ;)

    Since I vanished from the social media world, I find myself really enjoying just where I am in real life - my family, my friends, homeschooling.

    I have been popping in from time to time, to read a post or two on your blog of late, but haven't commented. Glad you are going to continue. I do enjoy your blog. xo

  29. Feeling better!!!!! I do enjoy your blog as it is quite different to many others, so pleae keep it up :)

  30. Oh please don't stop. I love hearing all the details about your homeschooling and thoughts. It helps me think things through.

    I used to blog and would love to again in some ways but just can't fit it in at the moment. So I love reading blogs that encourage me in what I'm doing.

    the other one

  31. Oh, yes ... please keep blogging. The blogs I usually read fully are about your perspectives, your experiences, your passion for nature, books, culture ... virtue. I also really value the resources you share.

    Thanks for taking the time.

    (I agree you should do it for YOU ... as well as US, cuz I'm blessed by it.)

  32. I'm speaking entirely of my own selfishness when I say "Don't stop!" I've been online less lately-well, reading blogs anyway, but I love to read yours! It'd be just strange if you were no longer 'here'. See entirely selfish. Now, I've not read others comments but there are quite a few so I'm sure there are many who are saying don't stop as well.
    I think that no matter what you blog about (hmmm, I think) it will be of help to 'someone' out there. So keep writing- even just some, that's what I think :)

  33. Dear Jeanne,
    Oh I AM a bit slow sometimes lol! I just emailed the CMANZ yahoo group addressed to you and then saw this post lol!
    Anyway, I am ecstatic that you are going to continue blogging, yay, yay yay!
    My suggestion would be to continue writing but perhaps not so often ( I know personally I don't read blogs everyday so sometimes when I do visit I have multiple posts to catch up on and only leave comments on one or two sometimes. I know this is just my perspective but hoping it might shed light on why maybe some others also dont comment enough?)
    But if you are happy for me to not comment on every post, go for it girl!
    I hope you are feeling much better after reading all the above comments and may they continue...you might set a record for the number of comments on a homeschool blog, who knows?:)
    I would not have had the courage to tackle AO if it wasn't for you for which I am SO grateful!
    btw, I believe the other Pam that commented above might? be your secret blog reader who is one of my dear real life friends in Sydney. Hi Pam!
    much love
    p.s. Ruby I also cant seem to get the follow up comments thingy going:)

  34. I think you are a great writer. If you choose to slow down or stop, I could understand that decision. Maybe you should direct your energy into a book? :-)

    Here is what I would like to hear:
    I would like to hear about daily life in Australia. Never having been there, I find it fascinating.

    You mentioned that Jemimah is not like you, which makes me wonder in what way she is not like you. However, I totally understand not posting personal issues on the internet.

  35. Hi Jeanne,

    I very rarely comment but read your blog regularly. As I mentioned on CM and Friends ANZ I actually follow very closely what you do. My eldest in a year behind your Jemimah and I'm so pleased that you have blogged about your knowledge of Australian literature. It would be a real shame to see you stop blogging - this is from a totally selfish point of view as I know that my kids will have a great Australianised AO curriculum. But I would also miss getting to know you better without ever meeting you.

    I do hope you continue as I too don't do facebook and would miss reading one of my favourite blogs.

  36. I'm glad your going to continue blogging :-). Perhaps you could revisit any new Anzac Day book finds. I just bought some of the ones off your previous list. I'm also looking for books about Easter. Always looking for Australian history books too :-)

  37. Please don't stop blogging! I enjoy reading whatever it is that you have to say. I don't usually comment, and I don't 'do' FB. I read through Google Reader so am often behind (I don't like that word; always 'catching up'!).

    A kiwi

  38. I'm glad you decided to keep blogging. I enjoy reading your thoughtful posts.


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