Friday, January 4, 2013

A New Year...A New Look...A New Direction

Happy 2013 to all of you!  :)  Hope your new year has gotten off to a good start.  My kids went back to school on Wednesday and I've been doing some major reorganizing in my kitchen and a couple other areas of the house.  Cleaning out, weeding through and getting rid of the unnecessary.  What is it about this time of year that always sets me on this path?  As much as I love Christmas, I also love the way my house feels when I get the tree down and all the decorations put away.  It's all clean space and a fresh start.  Feels good!

In case you haven't noticed, I've updated my blog design just a bit.  I like the simplicity of it.  (That whole 'clean space, fresh start' thing coming into play again, I suppose.)  I searched around until I found something that is pleasing to the eye without being overly fussy.  I've visited many blogs where the background was so busy that I had trouble concentrating on what I was trying to read.  I hope you guys find this one as easy on the eyes as I do.

Lately I've found myself struggling with this blog, as evidenced by my lack of posts recently.  It's odd that when I first created this place, I couldn't get through a single hour of the day without coming up with a half dozen different things about which I thought I should write.  Every event, every occasion, every little happening seemed blog-worthy.  Nowadays I struggle to find something that I think needs to be said.  Don't get me wrong...I don't feel the need to be the go-to site for a daily dose of news/reality/current events/rambling thoughts.  While I would never presume that this little blog is a necessity in anyone's day, I would like to think that I could contribute something worthwhile on occasion.  And I suppose that's what it is that I've been missing:  something that I feel is more worthwhile reading and less random poppycock.

So here I am, gears grinding and steam rolling out of my ears, attempting to find a focus for this little corner of my world.  Writing is a passion and, in and of itself, it is not the hard part for me.  Give me a topic and I will find something, typically many somethings, to say about it.  I will study it, research it, dissect it and do my best to gain a perspective that others may not have considered.  Ask my opinion on a subject and I will politely (most of the time, anyway) and (often) emphatically share my thoughts.  But, left to my own devices and my wildly unfocused thought process, I will sit and spin my wheels for hours in an attempt to choose a topic about which to blog.  It's maddening, really.

I spent many years writing only for myself.  I have written more story starts, poems, short stories, articles and essays over the years than I have shopping lists.  Aside from a few previously published essays, this blog is really the first time I have written with the intention of sharing my words with others.  I thoroughly enjoy it!  Writing is a baring of the soul; a sharing of innermost thoughts and dreams.  My first posts were trivial things, just a way of getting my feet wet and discovering whether or not this blogging thing was really for me.  Then I began to take it more seriously and realized that this was an opportunity to put myself out there.  It was a chance I had to take, for myself, to prove simply that I had it in me.  And I wrote about something that wasn't so mundane; something that had meaning to me.  After much editing and many bouts of doubting it was the right thing to do, so openly exposing the real me, I hit that 'PUBLISH' button.  Then I did everything in my power to go on with my chores and errands, driving my mom taxi, having my ordinary day. And all the while, in the back of my mind, I was wondering who (if anyone) was reading it, what they were thinking, if they were commenting.

When I eventually allowed myself to take a peek, I found that someone had read it.  Actually lots of someones.  And some of them let me know that what I had written had touched them, made them think, gave them a new understanding, or even simply made them smile.  Only another writer can fully understand the pleasure of receiving that kind of feedback. 

There are just so many niches in this blogging world and I am one of those who considers herself a Jack of all trades, master of none.  It is a real struggle for me to narrow my options and yet I know that in order for this blog to have any quality content, that is exactly what I have to do.  So please bear with me as I figure out exactly where it is I belong.  Opinions are welcome!  Let me know which of my posts you enjoy the most.  I can sort of figure that out by the number of hits and comments received, but I am also aware of the fact that readers come and readers go.  There are a few of you who have been right here with me from the very beginning.  May I just say I LOVE YOU FOLKS BUNCHES!  :)  I've made some wonderful friends in this place.  But there are also a number of new folks who stop in because of a search they performed or a link they've discovered on Pinterest, etc.  I'd love to see them become regulars here, therefore I'd love to offer them the kind of content they like to see.

So speak up!  I'd love your help in making Countin' Your Blessings a place you like to visit.  I want to give you loyal bloghoppers the type of content you find the most useful and entertaining.  Let me know what you need and want the most.  Tell me what strikes your fancy and makes you look forward to coming back.  You can comment here or you can contact me via email with the link in my profile. 

I look forward to hearing from you!  :)