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Brenda has been writing since grade school. She attended journalism school where she majored in professional writing. She loves to decorate, garden, read and spend time with her Yorkies.

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Brenda Pruitt. Powered by Blogger.

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Where Did Our Blogging Community Go?



Yesterday I had quite the surprise. I was on someone's blog and skipping around their blog roll (I sure wish people would have blog rolls. I love to see what they're reading and find new blogs this way), when I happened upon a blog that sounded vaguely familiar. 


Then I realized who it was. Do you remember Rue's Peanut Butter & Jelly Life? Well, she left the blogging world for some years, and has just come back with another blog. It is called: An Old-Fashioned World

I immediately left a comment and got back in touch with her. She wonders where the bloggers are that were around when she left. I tried to see all this through her eyes. 

Blogging has changed immensely. She must have felt like she entered an altered world. In many ways she did. 

She wondered why blogs were lacking in color. I often wonder that too, color queen that I am. She commented on the fact that so many blogs are businesses now. 

There is not the closeness and camaraderie there once was between us early bloggers years ago.  



The last month, I've been thinking about this a lot. I miss what we were. There still is a core group of us (you know who you are) and then there are the bloggers that swept in and set about doing things differently. Setting the world on fire with their enthusiasm and telling us all how to successfully blog.

How to blog? We've been doing it for years, thank you very much. And it was fun and there wasn't all this competition and showing of huge grand homes and becoming ambassadors for brands. Why, we wouldn't have known what that even meant years ago. 

Of course there are ads. I have to have ads to survive. I can't work for free anymore. But I try to keep them as unobtrusive as possible. And let me know if you find them obtrusive in any way, will you please?


Yesterday, after reading her short list of Archives, I realized how very much I missed the old way. There is a "distance" between us now that I find unappealing and sad. Many bloggers are competitors now rather than friends. Although they'd never ever admit it.

Two weeks ago, I deleted my Facebook account. Someone had hacked into it and was posing as the writer of my blog, and writing in a foreign language. And from what I could read, it was not a family-oriented blog. I was appalled. 

I didn't know quite what to do. Trying to sift through the angles and figure it all out, it occurred to me: Why do I even need this trouble? Facebook is great for family and friends, but now seems to have taken over everything.  

They make you wait two weeks before it is final. I suppose there is an angle there somewhere. But yesterday they emailed that I was no longer part of the huge conglomerate that is now Facebook. I cheered.

I don't participate in any social media except Pinterest, which is for pure enjoyment. Who could resist all the pretty pictures!



I'm not trying to set the world on fire. I just want to blog and read blogs and make some money to pay the bills. I don't need or want that world where social media becomes so big and important that you need them far more than they need you. 

I know taking this action would petrify many of you. Facebook has become part of the landscape of our online world. But doesn't that tell you something? That maybe it is a bit of an addiction of sorts?

I'm noticing that bloggers far and wide are simply cutting ties from many social media outlets, and just walking away. As I did. 

There is something very freeing about just walking away from things that have become too complicated. 



I simply want to focus on my blog and my blog friends. I want to step back in time. But is that possible? We all know you can't go back. But how about we move forward with a new purpose? A new goal?

We can do it if enough of us truly want it. 

So Rue, the blogging arena has changed a lot since you've been gone. I'm sure some of it is disconcerting, as I sensed from your words. 

Let's try to piece our little blog world back together. To be close again as we once were. To share happy times and bad, and be there for one another to lend a hand. 



All we have to do is step back from the rat race and do it. Who wants to make this blogging thing more meaningful as individuals? Who wants to bring the community back that we once enjoyed?

You readers out there, what changes would you like to see? I know one reader wrote that she misses color in our headers. She misses the photos of our lives we once showed in collage form. I told her I'd make one soon. She said that made her happy.

I welcome your comments and suggestions, bloggers and readers alike.


Cozy Little House
160 Comments
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160 comments:

  1. I don't have a blog of my own, but I love reading others' blogs! There's just something so personal and warm and inviting about reading your favorites and finding new ones. I, too, think facebook has taken away from the blogging world. I like it for keeping up with family, but I've been seriously considering deleting mine too. Too much drama for my liking. Keep on blogging...you've definitely got a reader here! God bless you!

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    1. Sometimes someone will tell me something they read from a blogger I read, and I'll scour her posts looking for it. Then that someone will finally say, "Oh, that's right. She didn't say it on her blog. She said it on Facebook." Yes, I think it has taken a good bit away from the blogging world.

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  2. I fell way behind in blogging in the summer during our vacation and then with my slow deterioration due to anemia. I began posting much less and I stopped linking to parties. I just couldn't keep up in visiting all the blogs that linked to parties and I didn't want to be a partier who just linked to have people visit me.

    I am feeling better now and posting a little more frequently. But, I haven't gone back to the parties. I also have not joined up on the Grow Your Blog party which I actually love participating in. I am just not able to be the good guest and visit everyone.

    I love meeting new people on blogs, but right now I am not able to be the good blogging friend that I want to be.

    I don't visit the "big girls" because no personal contact ever occurred. I like knowing the person behind the blog I am reading and hearing a little from them. So, I continue to keep it small and try to visit my blog friends as much as I can.

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    1. The "big girls" don't seem to want that personal contact that we all once had. That's what I'm yearning for. Don't worry about lack of participation. You're a great blogger and blog commenter and the "real deal" to me.

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  3. I'm so sick of all the blogs looking the same. I'm sick of gray blogs with white backgrounds and chevron patterns. I'm also sick of blog snobs who think they are better than everyone else. I sometimes want to say to them your house may be bigger but mine is paid for. We are also paying g cash to build are main farmhouse soon. Good things are worth waiting for. I also get tired of seeing people buy everything at Hobby Lobby there's no personalizing anything and no history to the pieces. My farm friends and I get a kick out of what city folks consider farmhouse style. White is used everywhere and when you live on a real farm we don't use much white because it would be covered in dust constantly.

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    1. Well, pardon my French (I am part French by the way), but ain't that the damned truth about the white being on a farm?

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  4. I don't like the blogs these days. I blog as a way to keep family and friends updated on what is going on in our lives. I don't have the answers to life's problems like a lot of bloggers. I don't have the patience for a "how-to" blog nor do I want one like that. I'm not much on bragging about what I have or complaining about what I don't have. I might share a favorite recipe or show a picture of something I've made for my grand daughter but more than likely I won't. I simply want to "journal" about my day, our little homestead, my grandblessings, and a scripture or two. Mostly, my blog is just the same as my home is. If you come to my house, you will see just what you saw on my blog. Nothing fancy just sharing. I wish more blogs were like that. I see many blogs that have a wonderful title but, when I visit them, I quickly decide they aren't my cup of tea. Many are just so unrealistic and pompous.

    Grace & Peace.

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    1. I know just what you mean. Many seem so unrealistic to me. Realism to me is a one-bedroom apartment with a patio.

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  5. Brenda, I deleted my Facebook account last summer. I don't miss it, AT ALL. I also deleted my blog, Beach Bungalow last summer because of the change you mention. But I missed blogging so I started Impromptu Home and gave it another go. You're so right, so much has changed, but I've met some really wonderful friends and I'm happy with my 'little group'. Are you and Claudia still friends? I remember the old days when you two co-wrote posts.

    About the 'big girls' blogs, frankly they bore me so I avoid them at all costs.

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    1. No, apparently we are no longer friends. When I moved to Wordpress.org right after her, then a year later decided I didn't like it and came back to Blogger, she never spoke to me again or visited my blog on Blogger. I emailed her many times and she never responded. Not sure what to make of that.

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    2. That's too bad. I wonder why she would do that.

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  6. Brenda,
    I am standing up applauding you!!
    I have posted about this and wrestled with it over the last year. I have a Facebook acct. under my name which is for family and friends and I also have a page for my Blog. Many follow me on that who do not have blogs so I decided to keep it after some debate. I no longer post on Hometalk like I did. No time......And I only post the posts from my blog on my Facebook sites. I did keep my Pinterest site for the same reason that you have .
    I found that I was getting pulled into that Blogging Rat Race and felt I had to do so many posts a week and link up to so many parties, etc.
    With all the other things that I got myself involved with last year, I was burned out....BIG TIME!!
    With everything....

    So for this year, I chose LIVE as my word for the year 2015. I need to enjoy life and not "Live to Blog but Blog about My Life" instead. So I post when I feel like., I no longer link up to a lot of parties like I used to.
    I visit more bloggers more often and leave more comments . I am blogging on my terms and just on my terms...
    I never got rid of my header photo because to me, that shows what your blog is about and it shows my style. I have also kept my blog roll, encouraging other bloggers to read other blogs.
    I stopped reading the big, professional blogs.
    I understand in your situation why you have the ads and need the ads and I am not going to say anymore that I will never have ads on my blog as I plan on going part time in November due to medical issues. I am the major bread winner so this will be a huge change for us.
    You will laugh at this but I have a phone that rings,,,, that is it... no texting and no internet. I do not want to be available 24/7. My family knows how to reach me and that is all I care about.
    I too miss the old days where you gave a hand crafted item in a Give away and not a prize worth hundreds of dollars from a sponsoring company.
    I decided to keep blogging because of the friends that I have made and for the friends that I may meet along the way.
    Thanks so much for joining in with a few of us that hunger for the old blogging ways..... Maybe we can change the tide.....

    Hugs,
    Deb

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    1. I hope we can do that, Deb. I can't even figure out how to do that Rafflecopter thing for giveaways, so I simply pass it by. Why can't we just draw from a hat? Who needs all that complicated stuff where you have to follow this one and that one. I'm not going to follow someone just to enter a giveaway. I feel exploited. And no, I won't laugh about your phone, because I have the same kind. It is from AARP. I don't know how to text and no way am I going to pay for internet for my phone. I have had it close to a year and could not tell you the number for it if someone put a gun to my head. I'm pretty old-fashioned, I'd say!

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    2. Brenda,
      Joe and i both just got new phones from Consumer cellular. Bought the Senior Model Flip phone in Target for a mere $60 each and i beleive we only pay $30 a month. I should do a post on this phone becasue i love it. Nice BIG Font, I have it set to ring like a phone and it does have a few nice bells and whistles like being able to program your medical info in under the ICE number.
      I pass up those giveaways too.
      I do miss the old blogging world. There are a few of us left out there so we need to stick together!! LOL!!
      Hugs,
      Deb

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  7. I don't like FB. I have a personal account, but I don't post, however I read close family members and friends and may comment. Personally, I find FB rude. I keep a blog roll, and I also use the feature of profile on Bloglovin to highlight others. I don't have a business, but don't want to rule out anything in this economy. I share on blogs that I receive visitors from, and I receive the most from yours. There are a few parties that no one ever comes from, so I stopped sharing there. I consider you a successful blogger that still has that personal touch. You must get very tired some days. xoox

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    1. Well, what a nice compliment! I guess I'm successful in that I've stuck to it for a long time. Not making a whole lot of money. Wouldn't be able to live on that income alone. But without the personal touch, what's the point, is how I look at it. I get very tired of bloggers that seem to want to change things. They have their own little (or big I'd say) group. So they can change if they want. But they're not going to change me. I am kind of a lone ranger of sorts. And I don't like what the Blog World has become. So I invite you to help me change it.

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  8. I don't have a blog or FB. I do like to read certain blogs but have really narrowed my list (obviously you, Brenda, made the cut :-). The same reasons given by other commenters apply to me, too. The ones that I most recently dropped were the decor blogs that suddenly became fashion blogs or home tour blogs. So, I'll just stick to the ones doing things on a real budget (not the "look at the bundle I saved. I got this 1200$ chandelier for just 900$ when I was in France last fall"), the ones doing true DIY (not that there isn't a time or place to hire professionals) and the ones who seem really honest.

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    1. I have visited with the big girls some, but they never visit me, so there was no real reciprocation. So I stick to my group now. The ones that are down to earth and share their life and can't afford to go to France period, much less buy something there. I'm happy for those who can, but it is not feasible in my world. I doubt I'll ever own a chandelier, so that's a moot point I suppose!

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  9. I've noticed this, too. Maybe it has to do with how everything is now out in public with all the social media available; no doubt people are discovering that sometimes what you put out there can also be damaging. Relationships, especially, are affected by seemingly harmless accessibility to say whatever is on your mind with no consequences. I have a feeling what you're noticing is partially a result of those consequences and people now wanting to preserve their privacy, dignity, etc. But I understand what you and Rue are talking about...I tend to gravitate towards blogs that are "real" and skip over ones that are too commercial now.

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    1. No one is knocking on my apartment door to offer me a mattress or a refrigerator or a free irrigation system. Once they figured out I live in an apartment, I imagine they'd cross me right off the list. I don't know half the lingo now used, because I'm out of the loop. But I know some bloggers hire virtual assistants to take care of the little necessities like commenting and visiting social media. So seems kind of fake to me. What's the point? You know the funny commercial with the three old ladies and one has put up a bunch of stuff on her "wall," (which is her real wall in her home.) And another says: "That's not how it works! That's just not how it works!" That sums up how I feel.

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  10. Hi Brenda, sorry I have been kinda missing in action. I have had a number of funerals and some health things and blah blah blah - you know how life gets in the way. I do prioritize my life and as much as I would rather be blogging, true life wins over my time most of the day....I am trying!

    Yes, things do change. But if you really mean what you say in those neat quotes in this post, you will also allow for those who blog differently to do their own thing, too. It may not be what it was, or what you like, but it is nice that we're all different. Thing is to visit regularly those whose blog gives you what you like, and ignore those who don't. Nice to have choices. It's nice we aren't all too cookie-cutter, that'd be so boring, wouldn't it?

    I appreciate your thoughts here. My blog is about what I love and sharing it with like minded people. I don't advertise, and I try to keep it a place to visit with some secondhand pretties I am able and blessed to share, I share my Christian faith, my Patriotism, my intense love of tea time and pretty china, of my decorating style throughout the seasons, and I try very hard to make it a place that makes a cherished visitor happier to have visited................I shall never EVER have FB. I do pin, have forever, but am not intense about it. I am not an old blogger but it is the friendship and closeness part I love the most about blogging.

    I don't believe daily blogging is for me, but it is for some, especially those who advertise. For me a quality post every once in a while is what I choose over quantity of posts.

    I do enjoy and appreciate each and every one of my guests, and read every single comment. I try to visit them back as often as my cat allows (joke.) I enjoy when you come by, and I try to get to your neck of the woods more often than not.

    Make it a good weekend. As always, I pray and wish you good health, joy and happiness. Hugs. ♥

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    1. Those neat quotes were just to summarize that people should be themselves, yes. Do their own thing. Not feel pressured to do more than they want. America is founded on choices, as you well know. I am a person who is most happy when communicating through writing. So when this blogging thing came along, it was right up my alley. I comment as much as the pupsters allow, or as long as I can stand their barking for attention anyway!

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  11. A lot of bloggers have quit blogging and are now doing it all on Instagram - of course these are bloggers who have their own businesses (e.g. fabric designers who are also writing books, in the quilting world where I live). Instagram is the new fad. Perhaps blogging (as the younger set sees it) was a fad whose time is quickly passing. That doesn't mean the rest of us can no longer visit each other and maintain our friendships. I can't wait to see your new (old-style) header. I have seriously missed everyone's headers, even though I was never able to really make one that looked good.

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    1. Oh yes you were able to make a good one! I remember. I haven't joined Instagram. Wouldn't that entail having a phone that does a lot of stuff? I'm not quite sure what it is. And don't really care to find out. Just one more distraction I don't need.

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    2. Mary, I thought had a nice header. I miss your blog. You were real.

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    3. I miss her too. But I think family needed her more.

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  12. Oh boy Brenda, I love these posts, but always get anxious about them too. Find I get myself in to trouble. I agree where has the "family" blogging community gone to. The big girl blogs and the next "almost big girl blogs have caused the loss of this community by turning it into a business. Now there's nothing wrong with making money if that's what you want, but do it with integrity. All the blogs I follow, and who follow me (that I know of) I comment. It's like visiting an old friend. But things always seem to change, you visit features and other blogs, leave a comment and they would come back. Lately I can't tell you how many I've visited, commented and don't get a visit back. Things always change. I have a rule now if I visit and comment on a blog, and I don't get a comment back, or get only a email comment back I scratch them off my list. One blogger out my way I left 7 comments on their blog and only got an email comment back. I got the message "I'm not part of their "clicky" gooup. Heck there are so many bloggers out there I can connect with, no need to waste my time. I don't know where all the color has gone either...gosh with all the beautiful color in the world the only one they choose is white? I really dislike all the home tour and group activities going on. I rarely click over to see. I want people I can relate to, like you Brenda.

    If someone can tell me how to get a blogroll on WordPress I'd have one.

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    1. I also wanted to say I hate how Facebook has been turned in to an extension of their business. Pinterest was so much fun and now that's part of their business, and the new one is Instagram, I love it but it's also their business. Gosh it's like commercials on TV, just can't get away from it.

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    2. Well, I still had a blog roll that updated on Wordpress, so I imagine I can figure out one for you. I have the same attitude. If they don't visit back, they need not bother with an email. A comment would be proper blogging etiquette. And if they can't bring themselves to do that, then I need not bother with them either. Too many fish in the sea.

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    3. Cathy, this link may have been the one I used. Not sure. Make sure you get the latest update of any you find.
      https://wordpress.org/plugins/feed-reading-blogroll/

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    4. I have a blog roll ( On WP ) but it does not update / it is just a link thing. Thing is that half of the ones that I have on there I have to remind me to check on them since they rarely post ( such at The Polder and a few like that one ) and I visit a lot more blogs than that roll, but most often do not click IN from that roll. For instance I just start to type www.coz etc and come in straight to your blog, Cathy's and others from the browser.

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  13. I am a quilt blogger and there are a lot of us out there that are just "chatters' we share our work, chat about life and what we make and how we make them. And there are the business quilters who are in it for the money and to advertise their patterns and tell us that we all need to be modern quilters now and make every thing by machine. I like the chatters - very informal -
    I am on facebook but I only have family on my account and my account is private, for a short while I was on two facebook groups but they get out of hand and when you have a quilt group that has over 7,000 members how can any one really be friends - it is next to impossible
    I love pinterest if only for the sharing of photos and ideas -- I love all the ideas I get from it
    I only advertise one thing and do not make much money off of it (Craftsy) but I do get a discount on classes and fabric/supplies so it works out in the end - I try to make sure it is not in the way of blog readers

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    1. I have made many quilts, but not any since I had a car accident in 1998 and injured my hands and right thumb. I never cared for those quilted on a machine. Takes away from the monetary value and the personal value, in my estimation. I do buy machine quilted quilts to put on my bed, because of the pupsters.

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  14. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I agree that things have changed and I am always amazed by the blogs that can swoop in and become majorly successful in a very short time. I have tried a few things here and there to make money and increase traffic but I haven't changed my style of blogging much. I agree that it is really hard to keep up with social media too. I love Pinterest and I use Instagram a lot because it's an easy thing to check when you are waiting in line at the grocery store. I post to Facebook every now and then and I think my Facebook is linked into Twitter but I don't even remember. I never actively use Twitter and I don't even remember my password! For the first few weeks of January, I really didn't post much. I really just post when I have something to say, otherwise it feels forced. I will just continue to read the blogs that I enjoy. It will be interesting to see what new changes come along in the future!
    Shelley

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    1. And you should just do it your own way, which is the way you are most comfortable. I guess I just have a lot to say! I always was a chatter box.

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  15. I miss the personal element of blogging. As the blogs have become businesses you lose more and more of the personal side. It's all about ten steps to improve yourself. One blog in particular that I really enjoyed visiting I only visit on Thursdays because of the postings of other bloggers. Keep on doing what you are doing Brenda!

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    1. I do too. Miss it. And I wouldn't know how to do anything else!

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  16. I love it when you compose a blog post like this Brenda. I'm coming up to my third year of blogging and still learning about what is the 'best' way and then feeling uncomfortable. I have a Facebook page but this is mainly there for my mum who is just getting into the social media side of things. I do try to answer any comments by email but the amount of comments I leave on some bigger blogs and nothing comes back happens more often than not. Out of the social media sites the ones I do find the best are Pinterest and Twitter, but nothing beats a blog itself - especially ones that reflect the blogger's personality. I have always made sure I have some photos in my header to show the potential reader what my blog is about visually. You have really made me think about freeing myself from all the different sites and concentrating on what this is all about - creating community. You are brilliant Brenda!

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    1. Not brilliant. Just wanting the simpler times back. When I visit a blog, I want to feel as though I'm in their home sharing coffee or tea and having a piece of pie and chatting while watching the birds out the window.

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  17. you know,, you should'nt get me started on this subject.. if I type how I really feel and say all I want to say 3 quarters of the worlds PC screens would instantaneously COMBUST~! and half of those folks will soon be on fox news screaming- Armageddon !! Armageddon,which, at the least would be good for a few laughs for us:)..
    You realize of course, that it wont be long before the annual Blog Conventions start, at which time I have no doubt that a Special Class will be offered to the BIG GIRLS of blogging, to help them explain why their readers simple MUST begin the new, click here click there- face east and bow 3 times- twist themselves into a pretzel and kiss their own ass/yes that's one kiss for each cheek, before being allowed to enter their blog and see their newest post... this newest required action, will get them 2 cents per click/kiss versus the penny a click which has now become so blase' and just doesnt instantly allow them to obtain the profit level to which they are ,soooooooooooooooooooo very entitled..

    I'm quite certain that should a dollar bill float into a busy street,, they'd send their first born child into heavy traffic to grab it and should said child live to get back to saftey it will be lovingly explained to them that " ""well Dear, you did for the FAMILY~!! you know, the same reason Mommy blogs..
    I could say more but with respect to those screens I mentioned at the beginning of my comment.. I'll save the rest for another time..
    love ya bunches
    Sonny

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    1. Sonny, with your level of intelligence (I'd love to know your IQ score, because I'm sure it's w-a-y up there) and creative imagination, you could be conquering the world. You think up things I can't even imagine on a good day. You must keep your daughter in stitches!

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  18. Brenda, you do know how to start a conversation!

    I do like to read some of the Big Bloggers, I have to admit. I enjoy the pretty pictures, sometimes find inspiration. I don't comment there. Well, I have once or twice commented when the post really connected with me but was not surprised not to get an answer back. Except once, recently when a blogger I always read because her words stop me in my tracks and make me think, because there is such depth there and it stretches my mind. Twice I did comment and recently had a delightful comment from her. A nice surprise.

    But my d-i-law recently attended a retreat where one day the speakers were Big Bloggers, thousands of hits a day, and evidently some of them said they never reply to comments, and yet they have many. I actually did comment one time recently on the post of one of them as the post was about a subject that I cared deeply about--something along the lines of how to take more interest in your kitchen and cooking. The blogger wrote replies to some of the commenters, skipping around and it seemed most with those she must have a personal relationship with.

    Okay. Will I be visiting there again, yes, every time she has a new post because I really like her posts. Will I comment again? Probably not.

    My FB has always been a personal page with family and friends not for my blog. I have "liked" the page of some bloggers and enjoy their posts. It seems like a lot of them think that FB is where they interact with commenters, not on their blog.

    I love these conversations you have. Real blog friends are great, I am so blessed to have met so many who are so friendly and sincere. Some are now pen pals for life. I'll continue to read some of the big girls but it's the blog friends who light up my life.

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    1. You are such a poetic soul, Dewena. Yes, I have heard said that one blogger announced to another that she simply does not have time to comment on blogs. Wonder how she'd feel if everyone stopped commenting on hers? I think she's too busy raking in the free appliances and irrigation systems to lower herself to such a level. I can't imagine what it would feel like for someone to buy me a house and then for all these companies to come out of the woodwork to make sure it had the latest of everything.

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  19. Hi Brenda! Oh, I agree with everything you've said - blogging has certainly changed. I remember when I started and the heart to heart we all shared. Some bloggers whom I really felt close to have changed, like you said, they seem to be trying to set the world on fire. Remember when blog parties were called memes? I did post more often back then. You found Rue? Oh, I have missed her. I typed in her blog name not long ago and it's a blog but been taken over. I'm sorry to hear that about your FB account. Well, I'm still just who I am. I don't want to set the world on fire just wanna have fun.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

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    1. I've missed her too. And grateful she's come back to us.

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    2. Sheila, your blog is one I still read. Now, if you would angle that piano like I suggested, that would be great.

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  20. I only read a few blogs now. I don't like the competitive aspect of it. I don't like the way bloggers are continually promoting their "brand." (I'm looking at you Miss Mustard Seed!) I don't like the way the fan girls ooh and aah about decorating that is really quite bad (I'm looking at you Nester!) Prizes for contests are awarded to those who have their own blog and will highlight the "winnings" on their own blog. It's all a sham now. Bloggers only comment on blogs that will increase their own SEO. There is really nothing that is personal or special about many blogs. Many bloggers have gone straight to Instagram (I'm looking at you Dreamy Whites!)

    I have about 5 blogs on my reading list now.I'm really not sure how much more blogs can evolve. We are kind of at the visual overload point now. So glad for Cozy Little House though!

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    1. Well thank you! I can't compete with those gals, and I don't want to. I don't worry about SEO; never understood it anyway. At my weekly party, I ask nothing of those who link up. Not that they follow me, or anything else. I don't think it's authentic when you do that. You're right. More of a sham.

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    2. Is it really necessary to call out bloggers by name . . . this sounds a little like junior high lunch table talk . . . I don't know those gals but I'm sure they work hard . .and maybe got lucky along the way . . . women shaming women for success never helps anyone and makes all women look bad.

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    3. I wasn't crazy about that comment either. I debated on simply deleting it, but there is freedom of speech to take into consideration.

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  21. Perhaps I am blogging under a rock but I don't sense a tremendous amount of change from 3 years ago when I started reading and writing my own blog. Maybe cause my attitude and perspective has remained the same.

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    1. Oh, we're talking much longer than three years ago. More like 5-6. You don't remember those times. You weren't blogging then.

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    2. Brenda, that sounded a little condescending. When did the change start?

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    3. I'd say about five years ago it began to go in that direction. Didn't mean it to sound condescending. I sent Laura a private email and explained to her as soon as I commented to her comment. I don't know how you'd like me to say it. But if you weren't blogging then, then you don't know what we older bloggers are referring to.

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  22. Brenda, I think I mentioned to you, a few months ago, that I thought YOU were one of the BIG bloggers. You set me straight when you told me how much they make off of their blogs. I'm sure, at one time or another, I've looked at some of the BIG blogs but there was nothing there that caught my interest. If I can't imagine myself sitting down with a blogger over a cup of coffee, I probably won't return to their blog. I can't imagine living in some of the homes I've seen on those blogs. I'm pretty sure no one really LIVES in those houses! Give me a small, comfortable, welcoming home, any day! I am SO happy to hear that Rue has returned to blogging, she had one of the first blogs I'd ever read. I sure have missed her and will head over to her new blog, immediately. Thank you for sharing that news with us! Please continue to do just exactly what you've always done, I look forward to each and every one of your posts!
    Have a great weekend and stay safe & warm!
    Deb

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    1. I'm so glad I could "bring" Rue back to you!

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  23. I love blog rolls, too! I think it's a great way to promote your blog friends and it's how I found many of the blogs I follow. I've stopped following many bloggers who are only interested in page views and never reply to comments or bother to stop by to visit my blog occasionally. I don't care about page views since I'm not blogging for a living, but I understand that for some, it's part of their income. I enjoy when people who are truly interested in what I'm doing stop by and leave a brief comment. I try to comment on every blog I visit, because that's what makes it all worthwhile, don't you think? To know that you've helped with a diy tip or simply made somebody smile is the icing on my blog cake. I've never been on Facebook and I don't think I'm missing out on anything. I like that you still have a blog roll on your sidebar and introduce us to many new blogs that we otherwise may have missed, and your Tweak it Tuesday features are always inspiring. Keep up the great work, Brenda!

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    1. I imagine that I will always have a blog roll. It's part of what we once had. How we met one another. It's like introducing your friends to other friends.

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  24. Brenda, I agree with Rue. I always feel like I'm on the outside-looking-in with blogging. I love to write and always have. I started reading blogs years ago. I remember the first time I read yours and I knew that you were one of the original, be-yourself bloggers. When I first found out about my husband and his dalliance, you were going though the same thing, in a way. It made me realize that I was not the only one and I also didn't need to feel guilty or ashamed. I agree about how there are a good number of blogs that are 'perfect', so much so that I feel very inferior. I hope I never make anyone feel that way. With living in an apartment, I can't always decorate the way I would like, especially with paint, but you and others have made me realize that it's okay to just be me and actually show you my place, perfect or not! I always look to this blog for decorating on a budget tips. You are fantastic with tips! I guess I just really would like to say thank you for still blogging, for putting so much time into it and to helping us feel that it is ok to be ourselves. I hope you and the cute pups have a good weekend!
    Hugs,
    Deb

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    1. Oh, I'm about to cry. How sweet you are! I know what it's like to get divorced and be broke. You have to be creative with money and with everything else. I just want to share when there's ways I figure out how to make it work. I don't want anyone to think that just because they live in an apartment, they can't have a beautiful home. They can.

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  25. I'm only a reader of blogs, but I agree, I miss the colorful and unique headers, I miss the blog rolls, and I hate the pop-ups and ads that make it take forever for their page to even load. I have only a very few I read now, some of those have posted here today. I like blogs that have real world doable ideas, like putting colored bottles I already had on my kitchen windowsill.

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    1. Well, I shall be making just such a header. With boho photos! Let me get a bit more done first. Don't those colored bottles make you smile every time you walk into your kitchen? Mine do. Especially with the sun shining through.

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  26. Thanks for posting this! I have been a part-time blogger for 5 years. I have resisted the urge to remove my colorful background and my collage from my header...just because I like the way it looks. I have noticed that other bloggers have the clean white background and less is more on their side bars...but that is for them and not for me. I think we are all creative people and we should should that on our blogs. I don't make money from my blog...wish I knew how but I just enjoy getting on and sharing from time to time. No pressure and no competition...just when I have time. Love your post!
    Miss Bloomers

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  27. You're right to resist the trends. Just be yourself and you'll be happy.

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  28. Brenda, you say what so many of us feel and think about blogging. I have been urged to do this, do that to make my blog make money. Do this post and that, FB, Pinterest, Etc...well I do a little on FB, but I may stop that. I like being a little blogger and making friends with other bloggers. Sharing our lives, our goals, our ups and our downs. I am lucky I don't have to make money from my blog. Thanks for just being you and not afraid to say what you think.

    Linda

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    1. Some have said that Instagram (owned by Facebook) is where bloggers are going now instead of their blogs. I don't have Instagram, so I don't know. But to me, nothing can take the place of our blogs. Our little homes on the internet where we share our lives with one another.

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  29. I just found Rue's blog today, Brenda, that's so funny! I laughed at her color comment. I am a red girl, on the blog and in real life! I have had people tell me that it might turn followers off, but I like it too much to change it. I am new to blogging...two years in March. I started, because I wanted to write. I had never read a blog before I hit publish and now I am hooked. It has rekindled a love for crafting, I am being recognized for my skills, I have been published in a magazine (a dream come true) and I have met the most lovely ladies who share my passion for creativity. I have done a sponsored post or two, for a product I really believe in, because I am a freelance writer trying to broaden my client list and because it's nice to get paid! While I don't know what blogging was like before 2013, for me, so far, it has been a great experience. I did get caught up in the "shoulds" when I started out. I set up a FB page and Twitter profile. I really do not use them, I actually posted about it a while back, saying that I'm just not that social. I don't visit the big blogs either and I don't do the follow for a follow. I agree with all of your quotes...I am too old to do things that I don't want to do. I read blogs and comment because I want to. I always enjoy your posts, Brenda. You are welcoming, authentic, I think your ads are fine and I adore the diversity of topics! :)

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    1. Even though I didn't delete my blog, I lost 1500 blog posts in July 2013 coming back to Blogger. But, things happen. You either sit and cry or you move on. So I started all over again. The freshness, the white screen in front of me was rather exciting actually. I think the diversity of topics is somewhat necessary, because otherwise you get into a "niche" rut and have to find a way to crawl out of it or you're chasing your tail trying to do projects!

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  30. I don't have a blog, but I love reading them, mainly homey ones. I miss the colorful headers and backgrounds, but I guess people are simplifying things for those who read from their smart phones or whatever.

    I love blogrolls. I have found so many wonderful blogs via other's blogrolls.

    I have no idea who the Big Girls are, but I suppose I must read some of them.

    Brenda, I can't go by years, but I've been reading you for ages, back when you were still in Texas and you had bought a wash tub and put it in your kitchen for storing things. And you had a shy cat who had her own room. And it was quite some time after I found your blog that your marriage blew up. A lot of what you went through hit home with me and I cried for you more than once back then.

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    1. Oh, that touches my heart that you cried for and with me. It was a terrible time, but as with everything, I learned a lot about myself from it. I found that I like to live alone, when the thought of it at the time was rather scary. I found I could do a lot of things I once thought I couldn't, and that gave me strength to move on. I wonder about that shy rescue cat sometimes. The older cat, Clyde, my ex told me at the end of this past summer died, and I mourned that for weeks. For I had been around most of his life, and I loved him so. (Have to split the pets, said the judge. I knew he could not take care of the dogs, so he got the cats, which broke my heart anyway.) How can you split the pets without losing out? Wish I still had that wash tub. The mover managed to tear it up.

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  31. I've only been blogging for a year now, but I have found many kindred spirits along the way and I am greatly enjoying the journey. I don't do FB, Twitter, or Instagram and honestly have no interest in doing so. My Pinterest is under my blog name so that I don't have junior high students stalking me. Ha! Which brings me to another point--no one in my "real" life knows I blog except my children. I want to be able to express my true feelings on matters without having my principal or students commenting on them. I want to grow my readership because people like what I write, not because they know me and it would be nice of them to drop by. We also have a "stalker" issue going on (not harmful, just OVERLY nosy) and I don't want to be giving them any more information than they already glean on their own. Life in a small town...

    I blog because I love to write and learn new things. I cherish the friendships I have made along the way--the interaction with others is what makes it all worthwhile! Thanks, Brenda, for developing such a positive community for all of us.

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    1. I don't blame you. In a small town, being a teacher, that would be hard. You've grown with your blog. I've watched you move out of your reticence at first (which we all experience), and now you are letting your personality shine through.

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  32. You have said a lot of what others are feeling, too. And instagram seems to be taking a lot of bloggers in another direction , too. I don' t like it and I miss them. :((

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    1. Me too. Maybe they'll tire of it soon. Or Facebook will decide to make rules for Instagram that they don't like. And possibly they'll move back toward their blog, where they make their own rules.

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  33. Well I often think of starting a blog but have not done that. I used to read several, usually would take a few hours on a lazy day and play catch up since I do not read them everyday. But somewhere along the way I got tired of a lot of them and stopped going to them. Sorta reminds me of HGTV in a way, I used to love that channel and would watch it anytime I had a chance to turn on the TV. Back then there were all kinds of budget minded DIY shows on and you could really get some great ideas for decor and just general home fix ups. Then they began to do away with budget part of it and started showing high $$ things, then it seemed to become mostly a real estate showcase. So I stopped watching. Blogs seem to me to have done the same thing. I used to read them because there were lots of creative ideas and lots of DIY that was not gonna break the bank. Now they seem to be more interested in selling me something, or making sure I sign up to follow them on every social network site there is. And they make sure to tell me where I can buy everything they used in their project complete with clickable links that I am sure is direct depositing to their bank account. They also wave some expensive items in my face and tell me I could be the next winner if I will just send them my firstborn as payment to enter the drawing. By the time I get through clicking the X to stop the pop up follow me things, find my way around the ads, I am too turned off to even read what they posted. But the funny thing is, most of the time it is not even the blogger writing the post, it is a guest poster. Which is fine sometimes, but some are doing that several times a week. I did see something new a couple of days ago that I had never seen, the blogger (was a new one to me from a Pinterest link) had a project gallery link, I love those so I clicked it. And as usual a page of pics popped up with all of her projects, found one I wanted to see more of, but when I clicked the link it just brought up the photo in a bigger size and a big PIN IT. To get to the actual project I had to do a search on her side bar. I only did 1 and then I left, never to return. And while we are on the subject, what is up with blogs that do not have a search??? Seems to be more and more of them...Anyway I like blogs that are REAL and I can relate to. No way can I relate to spending a ton of money for 1 room make over (and looks like crap anyway), and I surely can not relate to those that have huge houses and look like the photos are from a "I have everything I ever wanted" magazine spread.........There are a few real ones still around, but as you say fewer and fewer have that personal touch. And I love blog rolls also. I followed a link to a new to me blog earlier today and was surprised it was not active, she had a blogroll so started clicking away, but found more than half of those were no longer active also. Makes me sad to see because what used to be basically entertainment for me has almost disappeared. The whole world seems to have become just a great big ad these days. I went to the movies and they inundate you with the same ads that you see when you try and watch TV. The internet is the same way these days. And I am another Brenda..............

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    1. I get tired real fast when I click on a blog and a big pop-up fills the screen wanting me to subscribe. There's no way a pop-up, which is aggravating anyway, will convince me to sign up to get a blog post in my email. In fact it turns me off so that I won't. Those pop-ups have gained in popularity as I'm seeing them more and more. I guess when they finally figure out it is a turn-off, will they listen to their readers and do away with them. As for Search, I tell bloggers who ask me that Search should always be very close to the top of their sidebar, along with a way to contact them. I understand the need to make money. If my ads bother you in any way, you let me know. Okay?

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  34. Thought I'd stop by and leave my two cents worth, and have to say that the above post by craftybynight says it all for me. I used to blog, loved it when it was a big happy family in the good old days, and then it all changed. I wont repeat what everyone else here has said, but now I almost never read blogs.... the big ones bore me, or they are trying to market and sell something and all out there trying to outdo the others, while pretending that they are all real good friends! So I have given up.... not quite as I still have a few favourites - yours being one of them. A lot of bloggers have gone now, which I miss. I used to have a blog roll on my blog and its something I liked and liked to see on other blogs too. But, I found that the ones I used to have never bothered to visit me or did once or twice and so I thought... why should I advertise their blogs when they cant be bothered to read my blog or comment on it. SO that was the end of my blog roll and slowly with other changes over the years, I longer care or have the enthusiasm to blog as before. I have now switched over to youtube and love the community feel thats there, its almost like the blogger early days! I fear though that too will end in tears one day in the future! Thank you for the great posts and intersting variety of topics on this blog Brenda! Youre a keeper!

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    1. That's what I say. Why promote someone's blog on your blog roll if they can't bother to give you the time of day. I'd much rather give that spot to a newer blogger just trying out their wings.

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  35. Before I read some of the other comments I just want to say that I love Rue's Kitchen. LOVE IT and I'll go back to see more when I get a chance :)

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    1. Talk about authentic. That kitchen is AUTHENTIC! I love it too.

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  36. Brenda,
    I love this post! I remember when I started my blog. There were a few of us that all started together and our friendships remain. I am so thankful for that!

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    1. I lost track of you somehow. Not sure how that happened. Then Susan was talking about you, and I thought, how did that happen? You're on my radar now again!

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  37. That's why I love your blog so much. There are very few that I have found that are as honest and friendly and thought provoking and worth reading as yours. I feel like you are a friend. I have often talked about you to my husband. "You know Brenda, the blogger? Well I was reading on her blog about _________.." He knows you too. I like that. Please keep on doing things just like you are!

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    1. I wouldn't know any other way to do things. Not too sure you can teach old dogs new tricks! I communicate with many readers, and call them all friend.

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  38. I don't understand all this "blog" talk, I just know that getting a daily email from you brightens my long lonely days

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    1. I know this post is not very interesting to those who aren't bloggers. I wanted input from readers also. I'm glad I somehow manage to brighten your day though!

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  39. Hello from over the pond! I have a blog (mostly book reviews and they are only books I have enjoyed that I want others to read too), as well as the odd aside about life; and I'm a moderator on a web site (books again!). I love your blog - just snippets of real life and some good advice thrown in. I have been reading US blogs for some years now, and I do understand what you mean about the big girls! I don't often comment on any blog because well, who am I? But I did want to say that apart from loving your blog, I don't have and never had a FB account. If people want to know what I am up to, call me! Here I am or leave a message and I will get back to you. That'll do! Read all the replies so far and it's nice to know there are others like me (and you, Brenda!)

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    1. That's what I say to people who wonder why I won't text or turn on my simple AARP phone when I'm out and about. I tell them once we didn't have this instant form of communication. And if something of grand proportions happens while I'm out, I will be back soon. I am not going to learn to text, no matter how many others think I've been left behind in a time machine. I hate that it has brutalized the English language that I love. And how in the world are kids today going to know how to spell? I'm stunned at how many adults cannot spell!

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  40. I do not know what blogging is or was. I found your site through Pinterest and have received your post by email for about a year now. I enjoy your honesty, decorating ideas, and pictures of the pups tears.

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    1. Ah, those scruffy pupsters are my draw! I'm glad you enjoy reading. If ever you have suggestions for me about this blog, please email me and I quickly respond.

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  41. Wow, I think you hit a raw nerve with this post! :-) The 'huge' bloggers seem totally impersonal and are not fun to visit. I don't need to be shown a craft tutorial every day of my life. I like to get to the know the person behind the blog. As for ads, I don't have them, but that's not because I don't need them, but I didn't want them to be obtrusive. Yours are not, by the way. I hate the pop up ads that appear when I'm trying to read someone's blog post. I give up and move on. I wonder if the blogger realizes how rude those are, or at least seem, to some of us. I will have to check out Rue's blog. Thanks for this post, Brenda. So many of us feel this way. In fact, I've never had a personal Facebook page. I got tired of my friends becoming like lemmings and knowing everyone else's every move. It seems so invasive and yet so impersonal.

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    1. I want you to know I'm now enjoying the vanilla cocoa soap I purchased from you. The scent is oh, so pleasing as I shower!

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  42. Loved reading your post Brenda the comments. I am new to blogging and to reading blogs but so far I love that part of my day. I blog for fun for myself and it is a great way to share and have others tell you positive things. For me it is a win-win thing and you are one of my FAVS.

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    1. And you are one of mine, my talented little painter friend!

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  43. Hi Brenda, I so agree with this post and excited to hear that Ru is back. I have missed her!!
    Yes, blogging has changed since I started to follow favs in 2006 and then opened mine in 07. I pretty much still blog the same and find it works for me. Of course I have grown in my format and learned a lot along the way to make the page more inviting like realizing I needed a name change etc and started over, but still kept things primarily the same. I too deleted my facebook page finding it was a time drain for me and my creativity in painting. I don't miss it at all.
    Like you, I keep pinterest, but need and want to do more there as time allows. In our etsy shoppe, they give us a stats page to see when and who is coming to our shops and from where. It's interesting because blogs for me are still number one over all other sites. That tells me that friends like to linger there when they visit. It may be different for others, but this is what I am seeing and I check it often. Again this is how it was when we started to blog and our sites helped us lead others to our shoppes.
    And I have to say, not because all I care about is selling something in dollars and cents sort of speak. But we all, whether we have a shop to promote or our blog posts to share, are selling something of ourselves to gather readership. I'm not so concern about how many I can gather in my following as I am to share something worth while to those that do follow. The rest will take care of itself.
    In blogging I still like the personal touch, it's like being right there together in person. Enjoying a conversation while sharing something to be inspired by. Call me an old fashion blogger, but I still gravitate to blogs that remind me of how we started out. I still love the banners and headers we made ourselves and the pics we shared on sidebars. Proper blog etiquette is still very important to practice when we visit in return to comments and I know most like that. That's what we did in the beginning and that is what builds friendships. The back and forth just works. I have heard Instagram is where everyone is headed and doing away with blogs. I see it but not really versed on how it works.
    You brought up a great topic and one I know is on the minds of so many as your comments share.

    Your blog has been such an inspiration to me since I met and started to follow you about a year ago. Thank you for all you share.
    Happy Sunday!

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    1. Instagram is now owned by Facebook, so no telling what will happen there. But I will be blissfully ignorant, for I don't care a whit for either one! I, like you, believe that there is still our core group who have become friends and will be there through thick and thin.

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  44. Wow, with all the comments on this post I can tell this post spoke to a lot of people! It did me too! I have been blogging for a long time and have switched from one blog to this one several years ago and after reading this post I'm hoping I'm not one of the blogger's that disappoints. I will admit that I am trying to make money with my blog... and I am a business (Little Vintage Cottage), but I am a person too. I love connecting with other bloggers and I get so offended sometimes when I comment on one of those "bigger" blogs and get NOTHING in response... no-thing! I usually stop looking at what they are posting after a few times of reaching out and being ignored. I don't need a reply back to everything I say and I totally understand being busy but come on! To completely ignore and never respond to the people that have made your blog big and popular is not ok with me!

    So.... I blog because someday I hope to be able to have an actual income from it but mostly because I love it, I love sharing my projects and home, I love seeing what others are doing, and I love the new friendships that form when we all share with one another... and actually talk back! lol!

    Tania

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    1. I don't think we need to apologize because we have to make money. Some of us have money, and some of us don't. Being divorced and in my fifties, I didn't have much to fall back on. This income does not pay all the bills, but it helps. And I'm doing something I love. I don't think you disappoint at all. I always support small businesses like Etsy over big business because it gives those who need an income a step up. My friend Judy has an Etsy shop and truly enjoys it. I'm gratified to see that we are all a community joining in this discussion. That tells me that we want that small town feel for our blogs in a sea of millions.

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  45. Also wanted to add, your ads are not bothersome at all. It's the pop ups that irritate!! xo

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    1. Thanks for letting me know. When I was with BlogHer, I know there were some problems there. But I would never ever have a pop-up asking people to sign up. I think that's just plain rude.

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  46. I started blogging almost five years ago. You were one of the first blogger I found. You were then and still are my favorite to follow. I was so thrilled when you featured me, little ole me, in your welcome wagon . My blog is simple, point and shoot pictures, probaly too much about the little ones in my life, not alot of decorating, no fancy house, on and on.
    I probably started a short time before the big changes, but I have seen them. So many have stopped blogging. Some don't post but they read. I am annoyed by the big ones that never visit back. I think I shared this before about winning a giveaway on one. I think I was gone when I won. Another friend blogger told this person that I was away and she would contact me. The host told her she was about to pick someone else because she didn't know me. When I contacted her, I told her I had followed her for four years. She never even answer that.
    I miss the sweet giveaways. I wish more would comment. When I go to leave a comment and have to sign my life away, I move on. I love my bloggy friends. I think about them and pray for them
    When you were going through the awful times, I wished I could have reached through the screen and hugged you.
    I still facebook mostly to stay in touch with friends and family. I did get hacked once. The person started talking by messages to one of my followers. Someone suggested that I put a profile picture that had never ever been on my page. It worked. I am now very worried about the pictures post there. Mostly because of my son's job.
    I need to change my blog roll. I do like them because you meet new people. Mine is so outdated. Because I am afraid to touch much on my blog for fear it will disappear, I haven't been brave enough.
    So in summary of all my caring on here this is what I like to see when I read blog........
    Someone who blogs from the heart not from the checkbook.
    Love you Brenda.


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    1. Well, if the person hosting the giveaway only wanted people she knew to win, why in the world didn't she just open it up to her friends and be done with it? That is beyond rude and I'd have been done with her too. You've always been so kind and comforting to me, and I thank you for that! If you want, give me your phone number and you can sign me on temporarily to be an administrator in settings, and you can tell me who you want on or off your blog roll and I'll do it for you. I take care of Judy's blogroll.

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  47. I'm with you, Brenda. While it may be true that we can't go back, some of us never left in the first place, LOL! I'm a no ad blogger. I don't mind unobtrusive ads, because I know folks are trying to make money. But some of the blogs have gone over the top. The pop-up ads that come up despite my pop-up blocker being turned on tick me off the most. When that happens at a blog, I do not visit it again, period. When I started my blog it was to share my thoughts and my ideas, whether silly or brilliant, or most likely, somewhat slightly boring and in-between :) Don't care. I love blogging. I'm not addicted to it. I don't do it every day, but when I have something I want to share it's great to know I can, and that someone out there - whoever it may be - will "get it." Or maybe not. But that's okay. Blogging is a form of expression, and a form of connection. The big blogging queens can do their thing - it seems some of them are CONSTANTLY spending money on this or that, geez. For myself, spending money is serious business, as there isn't much of it just laying around waiting to buy the next horse portrait or fake moose head. But it's all good. Let them do their thing, and I do mine, c'est la vie. We know what we like, and those of like mind will find each other. It's amazing how the internet makes that happen.

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    1. I think you're right. Some of us never left in the first place, thank goodness! I blog every day. But then it is my social life. It is my family life. Spending money is serious business for me too. I have to struggle over it and ruminate over it before I can hand it over. I don't understand the moose heads or antlers and such. If it's your thing, fine. But every time I looked at it, I'd wonder about the animal whose head it was once on!

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  48. I blogged for a couple of years and thene ran out of steam when my oldest son died. But I still like to read the interesting ones -- yours included and feel like I know you a bit and enjoy keeping up with what's going on in your life. I have a good size list of blogs I used to read but now I skip most of them and enjoy just a few of you who live a real life.

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    1. Real life is joy and sorrow. Good times and bad. It isn't just pretty pictures on the wall or a new piece of furniture or lamp a week. I feel sorry for the gals who feel they must shop constantly.

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  49. I enjoy reading your blog. I do love the color you use to decorate with. Also, love the color of your words!

    I started to "learn" how to blog in 2009. My life changed so much after that year, that I have not had the time I wish to do more than post a few updates. I love to read blogs more than I ever did a magazine! I love pinterest also.

    I receive your blog through Bloglovin'. Some days there is a blog post in Bloglovin' that is labled "cozy little house" but it is in small letters. The language is foreign. The picture when you can see one is of some lady in not so nice clothing. She is probably the one who hacked your facebook account. ( It could be a man though.) Is there a way they could be removed from Bloglovin? Is it only on my feed from them?

    Thanks for the work you put into your blog! I appreciate it!

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    1. Oh, I so appreciate your telling me this! Horror of horrors! Now they've taken over my Bloglovin account too??? I'll have to figure out what to do there now.

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  50. hellllo! Thank you for such a lovely post! It is always very refreshing to hear the voice of reason. I couldn't agree more with you. Back to basics and keeping it simple is the best way to go. I haven't written before but have enjoyed your posts for quite awhile. Keep up the great writing and posting as it is greatly appreciated!! :)

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    1. Well, comment when you wish. It is certainly not mandatory. Just your reading is more than enough!

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  51. I don't tweet or text and have jumped off facebook once already. I went back to it because I have two children, grownups, who travel internationally and it is the best way to follow them. Otherwise, I don't like facebook and love facebook. You can't have these longer dialogues; too quick and too little. I prefer blogging.

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    1. I understand that it's a great way to connect with family and friends. I was never active on it, so it wasn't very important to me. And I just didn't want to deal with having a social media account with my name on it that some stranger could hack into. That made it an easy choice.

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  52. I just keep trying to do what I started out doing. I think it's important to stay true to who you are, and be yourself. I've posted about the "change" in blogging several times. I have a Facebook page, but I don't use it much. I've seen bloggers opt for Facebook, but I've also seen many fall prey to disagreements and petty squabbling. To each their own, I just have to be true to myself. I'm not buying into the stress of competition. I read a lot of "the big girls" and enjoy their posts, but I don't expect a comment back. I realize that most people don't have time to return each comment. It's not that they don't care, it's that they've learned they cannot sit in a chair 24/7. They have kids and jobs and husbands that have to be balanced in life. I always love coming here to check on your world, Brenda. And I hope that's what my readers think about me. Ads or no ads, that shouldn't be the criteria for whether someone "reads" us or not.

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    1. Debra, I do think you stay true to yourself. You are one of the big blogs I follow because I do find you relateable (is that a word).

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  53. I agree with what you said. It has changed...all about fame and fortune now. I treasure the people I have come to know through blogging over the last 7 yrs. I never understood the ones who never visit anyone. I don't post unless I know I will have some time to return visits, or at least some of them. I do have 2 ads on my sidebar, pays for the link up service and the give aways and postage etc. The pop up ads are horrendous, and I leave immediately. I so agree about blog rolls, such a good way to find new blogs or visit ones we have forgotten.
    I haven't been blogging much, life comes first. As for the shopping, I was always a bargain shopper, way before blogging, it's a hobby, but I rarely buy shoes, and I never drank or smoked, lol! It evens out.
    Glad you are doing well, Brenda! Very interesting topic, but I wonder if it will fall on deaf ears.

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    1. I guess I don't really care if it falls on deaf ears. Actually, I know that it will. Because those bloggers and I don't really mix anyway. So they won't even be reading it. I wrote it for the ones I've come to know, like you, that I want to feel a sense of community with. I just wanted to know if others felt the same way.

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  54. I think what you've revealed about the changes to blogging is true in more that just this blog niche, I left and returned with a new blog too after having two babies. Things are not the same! And how funny you made me feel better about my too big header that I had considered shrinking because it really didn't follow the new normal. Sigh, it was nice to have friends who took the time to comment instead of all of "business" which doesn't seem as friendly of a world we once had.

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    1. I don't know why some bloggers email us rather than just leave a comment. Aggravating. If I read a blog post, I'm more than likely going to comment unless I get distracted by something I have to tend to.

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  55. Thoughtful post, Brenda. I still blog, selfishly perhaps, for myself. It's my way of chronicling my life now. I miss the hard journals though. I have dozens filled with cursive writing and stories spun from pain and sorrow, as well as joys and blessings. Every year I buy a new journal, determined to fill its pages as before, but my handwriting has become so bad that some days not even I can read it, so this year I, so far, have not purchased one. In the meantime, blogging will have to serve the purpose.

    I'm always honored when anyone comes along for the journey with me and even though I can't always respond to every comment, I always answer any questions readers might pose, and I also enjoy getting emails from readers and fellow-bloggers.

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    1. You should see my handwriting. Normally I can't even read mine either.

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  56. This is my second attempt to leave a comment. This thing ate the first one. I just wanted to say -- "You are preaching to the choir."

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  57. Holy smokes, Brenda! I didn't mean to set the world on fire either, but my blog has blown up lol

    Thank you for taking the simple words I wrote and writing how I felt, but wasn't sure how to communicate. You've always been able to read through the lines ;) And thank you for making me feel welcome back and missed. It's a wonderful feeling, but I'm actually slightly taken aback by all the response. It always amazed me how much I touched people with my little blog PBJ, but I'm even more amazed now by how many readers/friends still remembered and missed me.

    Anyway, thank you. You're a great friend :)
    xoxo,
    rue

    PS. Now, I'm going to read all your comments and mine :)

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  58. Wow, this post really opened up the flood gates, didn't it! I have read your blog for years...don't know how many, but I started when you lived in TX. I'm not familiar with Rue nor her old blog, but I will definitely be going to her new blog and saying hello. I rarely visit any of the "Big Girls"...only pop in to certain ones once in a blue moon to get some eye candy. Actually, one of those Big Blogs is a guy, so I guess I should say "Big Girls", lol. Anyway, I never comment on their blogs because like you and everyone else said, it's just one-way communication. I like to develop a friendship with the person behind the blog and you can't do that with the Big Bloggers. I also tend to gravitate to people and blogs I can relate to - those who are "keeping it real" and blogging about all sorts of things in their lives. I have developed some wonderful friendships (and you're one of them!) with quite a few bloggers and that is just one of the things I love about the (smaller) blogging community. I'm on FB, but it's my personal FB page - not connected to my blog in any way. I don't even have my blog's URL on my page. I use FB to keep in touch with a lot of long-distance friends and relatives. I love Instagram because sometimes I only have time to post just one photo with a one-sentence caption. Have a Twitter account but never use it. Only signed up in the first place to follow my nieces. Well, I'm off now to go visit Rue...thanks for the lively discussion!

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    1. Oops, grammatical error in my post which drives me crazy...*shouldn't say "Big Girls".

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  59. Hey Brenda...I'm glad to see Rue is back, I loved her blog!

    I think it's great to stir the pot a little to see how everyone feels about certain aspects of blogging. It has changed yet some things have stayed the same. Issues concerning ads, lack of follow up comments and bloggers that have become CEO's of their monster blogs. My own little two cents is that we can't change what people do on their blogs. If they need money, could care less (or don't have time), to visit, or have just become untouchable, the choice has to be made as to whether we want to continue to follow them. We have talked before, while I'm not riding a big horse and waving a lasso, I would love my readership to grow. I'm not focused on money as I am just wanting more recognition as a good lifestyle blogger, a place for people to get their fix of my take on all things "home". I know a few ladies pretty well, that have gotten really BIG in the past few years. They were very kind to respond to my emails when I asked, "How do smaller blogs ever grow when the big blogs are so closed off and not available for the time of day anymore?" Well, it was pretty obvious, you have to start your own "generation". These blogs are Gone Girl. And you can bet, after the books and magazines and ads for Home Depot, there are more new and fresh blogs awaiting. I ask myself if I have the time to commit to blogging more, to having a party or weekly feature, to attend a conference. Do I really even want to get into that? Can I grow more yet not be a prisoner to my laptop? Can I stay friends with all of the nice ladies I have met and share more than just comments here and there with, if my readership goes up? I really need to sit and think and define what it is I want.

    I deleted all my emails that were crowding up my computer and IPhone. I barely glimpsed one from you about my hearing, and no, it's never a personal issue with me. Without my hearing aids I can pretty much hear nothing. Just some muffled noised. Sort of like white noise without the noise! lol! I rely on lip reading and watching mannerisms. Toss it all together and I function pretty well.

    Thanks for a great post.

    Jane x

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    1. I guess what gets me is that many of these bloggers were once on our level. They commented on our blogs and it was reciprocal. Then they got big and didn't give us the time of day. Now if that doesn't bother them, then it doesn't bother me. Because I simply don't read them anymore when there's no reciprocation at all. I would never want to get to that point. The fun would be gone for me.

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  60. Thanks for sharing this post, I always loved reading Rue's Peanut Butter and Jelly Life! I am happy that she is back to blogging. I agree that blogging has changed quite a bit from those early days, they certainly seem to be more about business now and less of the personal.

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    1. And I don't resent the gals being all business. But it's a hard fence to straddle. Once they get to a certain point in their "business" they have no time to keep up with the friends we all once were. So they move on and we just part ways. Because what else can you do? Who's going to read a blog whose owner never reads yours?

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  61. to everything there is a season.... and a reason.....

    though we may not be aware of the purpose of said season and the real reason of said season as we live it. :)

    life is cyclical. blogging is cyclical.

    and many of us follow our hearts and many of us long to.....

    but all of us are born anew.... with each breath that we take.


    Dear Brenda,

    You are an authentic and VERY nurturing soul. You give the universe freely and you share from your heart. That is how you have always shared. Thank you for the years and years of YOU.

    What a gift you are.


    xo,
    Kim

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    1. And so are you, Kim. And always have been.

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  62. Well said. Of course you know I am old school and where I stand on the subject.

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    1. Yes, I know. I think we're pretty much on the same page.

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  63. I stopped reading Money Saving Mom when she went "international", so to speak, by going to Africa and helping children there. She started months ago by "promoting" a woman in Africa who was there helping children. I have nothing against helping children wherever they are. My question to her, which she refused to print, was - What about your elderly neighbor next door who cannot even walk to her mailbox anymore or go to the grocery store? What about children here begging to be adopted when Americans go OUT OF COUNTRY to adopt other children? What about street people who need our help with housing, clothing, food? Her whole thing has become about "me, me, me" and what her attorney husband has done by quitting his job and focusing on her blogging. I thought blogging was supposed to be about sharing a little bit of your life and loves with the public through decorating and cooking and home-schooling. I thought it was about who we see around us hurting and what we did to help or get that person help. I thought it was about showing how in our own little small world we are making a difference within our families and within our own country. I did not realize it was a means for promoting ourselves (which I have NEVER seen Brenda do) and raking in as much money as fast as we can (another thing I have NEVER seen Brenda do). Thank you, Brenda, for being what I see as a real blogger. You share yourself but do not promote yourself. You are honest, genuine and a beautiful person. I love you for that, girl.

    Cate <><

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    1. Well, I certainly thank you for your kind words. I think they get a lot more recognition and press when they go help people in other countries than if they stayed here and helped their neighbors. I've never quite understood that. It's like they turn a blind eye to what is all around them and just pick up and go where it's trendy to go. And probably a lot more financially rewarding. We all need money, but some of us have ethics as to how to go about getting it.

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  64. Years ago I started reading several blogs. Back the there really weren't that many. I would leave comments because I thought it was the polite thing to do. There have been several that have gone through some very life changing events. I remember way back when you posted about enlarging your patio in Texas. Anyway, I started a blog because I felt guilty I didn't have one and enjoyed reading others. The problem was I'm a very private person and really didn't want it to become all about me blog. That would be a very boring subject and it seems like that became the common theme with so many. There are some beautiful blogs out there but I just can't relate to. I do have a FB account that many of us from all over the world really just post very pretty pictures, recipes and about good books. It's a quick check in. You'd be surprised how much you get to know about someone from just a couple sentences a few times a week. For me it works. It's kind of like we bounce ideas off each other and get some inspiration. Your blog is probably one of four that I check into. I know, the buy my paint, book, come to my workshop kind of got old. Some became a bit too theatrical for me too. All the pet names for all the people in their lives got to be a bit much. So back to how's your ankle and ear hahaha!!!!

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    1. I finally worked up the courage to put the brace on today. I did too much painting and so my ankle paid the price, so I didn't want to start it on a bad note. It isn't as bad as I thought, but it's hard to get the leather toward the toes to lay down to strap your sneaker on over it. And then there'e the fact that I have to wear a whole size bigger, so it's too big for my other foot. Maybe I'll just have to wear two different looking shoes for awhile! Might be comical to see people staring at that! They'll just think I'm dotty.

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  65. I don't read many of the big blogs where never the bloggers reply to comments and always show us perfect homes that are about double the size of an average home only to tell us how they hate perfection and how they need to purge because they don't have enough room! So the blogs I read still have that sense of community, according to me.

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    1. Well, those are the ones that I read as well. I can't stomach the others.

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  66. Brenda I am very thankful for your blog. You inspire me many times. To keep my life limited, uncomplicated and enjoyable. I love the furniture you paint. I would like to paint some of mine but believe I need a "how to" lesson. I am sorry Claudia disappeared. I had a long time friend do that and I even contacted her and apologized for anything I might have done but no word back. It's been over 5 years now. All is well I just had to move on. I thought we would enjoy tea during our senior years but it was not meant to be. I guess we were friend for a season and the time has passed. You brighten my days so often and the comments on your blog are very helpful too. Have a wonderful day. Sunny I hope.

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    1. Tell me, how did you get past the wondering what you'd done? How did you find closure when there was never an answer? That's what I can't seem to stop struggling with. Because friends are very, very important to me. As I'm sure they are to you as well. And no doubt about it, it hurts. It's been a year and a half. Maybe I'll get there soon.

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  67. So cool! I've often wondered what happened to her because someone else has blog that has a very similar name. But when I visited it wasn't her (obviously) Will definitely go to visit her!

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  68. Brenda..... I believe my friend wanted things from me and my daughter. She liked our talents and could benefit from what we knew or could do. She has a husband so socially believes she ranks above me since I do not. She has what she believes to be nicer material things. I could go on and on. I don't believe it was just one thing. Like you did yours I valued our friendship very much. My heart still aches from time to time. I read there are seasons for friendships so I believe that must be true. I do not believe she was the spectacular person I thought she was. When she had taken all info and gifts I could give she left and did not explain why. What other reasons could there be other than what I have stated. I hope this helps. Maybe others will have thoughts too.

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  69. Well, your stats may show that at least one reader stayed on your blog for-ever! You did a wonderful job of putting this into words. During my 6 yrs of blogging, I've just gone merrily on my way, doing it the way I want to do it. At least most of the time. I did try to tone down my header, because I thought it looked kind of unprofessional. When people start talking about SEO, my eyes glaze over. Most of the time, I'm satisfied with being the little fish in a big pond, but I so miss the days when blogging was newer (and a lot more fun). And maybe I'm just jealous that they are so smart, but I'm really tired of people who've been blogging for a year, trying to tell me how I should be doing it. I have gotten caught up in it a time or 2, but reality eventually hits, and I realize that I have nothing more to offer than what I'm already doing, so I'll just continue to go blissfully along, being the same little blog I was 6 yrs ago. Thank you for this post, Brenda.

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  70. I miss the way it was blogging several years ago. We were all friends from all over the country. There was a real sense of community! Many of those bloggers have stopped blogging but I can't bring myself to take their blogs off my blogroll. I guess I think one day they will start up again!

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  71. I came into blogging almost three years ago this May, and you know that you were one of the very first people to give Poppy View some much needed exposure, and I will always be grateful for your generosity. So, it seems I was lucky, since I have met so many really sweet, kindred spirits, thoughtful souls, who I could easily be friends with in real life, in the time that I've been blogging.

    Of course, there are those who don't always leave a good impression on me, and when that happens, I quietly keep a discreet distance. What I'm trying to say is that I see the blogosphere as a microcosm of the great wide world, in which people come and go, move to different neighbourhoods, if you will, and sometimes they lose touch with the old neighbourhood, for whatever reason. It's like this: if one is not satisfied with the food in a certain restaurant, and to be fair, has given it a chance a few times, because they have considered that maybe the cook was having an 'off' day on one or two or three of their visits, and find that the fare is still not to their liking, then they simply do not return! Similarly, if I visit a blog, (and not just a 'Big Blog'), and leave a comment, one or twice, and that person cannot find the time or the kindness to visit and comment over at my place, well, then, I stop visiting, precisely because I take it as an insult, which, according to blog etiquette, it is. Easy peasy, no complex formulas here, just good manners, which, if they don't come naturally, can easily be learned, so no excuse.

    Love your blog, love your honesty, and love when you visit me, too!:))

    Poppy

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  72. Hi Brenda,
    Such a great post that plucked my heart strings. I so enjoyed reading all the comments as well. I am a sporadic blogger, especially these past two and half years due to health reasons. I have never had a Facebook acct (which drives most of my friends crazy) and just signed up for Instagram a couple of weeks ago, but no pics yet as I am not sure how to do it. I wrote a blog post several years ago about this topic called Blogger Breakdown that you might be interested in... http://www.elizabethhouseshoptalk.com/2011/09/blogger-breakdown.html It is located on an old blog that I don't even keep up with anymore should just close it down. Thank you for such an authentic blog which helps validate thoughts I have been having lately about the cyber world. Love your realness and enjoyed this post a lot.

    Big hug
    Elizabeth

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  73. I hear you loud and clear Brenda! I feel the same way about forums (message boards). I've had a couple of blogs before, always born out of a message board here or there. The message boards used to be amazing: hundreds or even thousands of women with life in common, talking on all sorts of topics. It was active. Then Facebook came and everyone took their conversations there. And those message boards, for the most part, have died.

    I miss my momma friends.

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  74. http://katietreasures.blogspot.com/2015/02/not-one-of-cool-kids-link-party.html
    Hope you'll all check out Katie's party and link up. She feels the same as you and I applaud her.

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  75. One of the best blog posts ever! I too posted about Rue's return to blogging. Then in the same post I mentioned the demise of 'Young House Love' reported last September in the New York Times. I used to feel badly that I didn't have the time to blog and make loads of money at it like the 'Big Girls'. I have a full time job and I am the sole income for our family since my husband was laid off in 2008. I just don't have the energy for all those blog parties and all the social media that makes a blog 'blow-up.' I don't even have any ads; I just have not gotten around activating that part of my blog. Anyway, I am so glad Rue is back, which prompted my visit to your blog, which took away the shame I felt by not making much needed money from my blog. Thank you, thank you, thank you for this very wise post! And no need to visit Jewel Box® and respond. You have much better things to do, like writing wonderful posts that make us 'old school' bloggers feel pretty good about what we do - and don't do! Cheers, Genevieve

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  76. I came a bit later to blogging so I don't know about the era when blogging was more about just being blogging buddies and friends. But it seems to me that there are so many blogs that each one can find their own little niche and connect with whom they like. No one need bother with the bloggers who are more into business' if they don't want to. I really think there is something for everyone in the blogging world. So that is a great thing! I blog mostly to keep my "customers" informed of when our next vintage occasional sale will be and also what we are finding. But I still like to visit other blogs to visit with people and then occasionally visit a business blog or two to see some pretty ideas for decor. I'm happy reading all kinds of blogs, really!

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  77. I've been considering deleting my FB account. But I would lose touch with what my far-flung family is up to. Unfortunately, they don't update the world any other way, and I want to see my nieces and nephews grow. I haven't monetized my blog. I want to talk about whatever I feel like talking about. i may change my mind about that one day. I started out talking about my kids, things I like to cook, and how I like to spruce up my space. But, real life is far grittier, so I might have to change the focus of it to say what I want to say more often...I think it's a shame when some really fun craft bloggers run out of material because they are monetized. They feel like they have to blog daily, and the well runs dry. It's a shame.

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I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you!

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