Sunday, September 16, 2007

Why I Blog, You Ask


At its core, I blog to express myself and to improve my writing. A summer ago I started the Alabama Kitchen Sink with this post. I had just opened a cafepress.com shop and thought I could round up some business that way. Little did I know soon the blog would take on a life of its own with no purpose other than the writing and the connections it brought.

I haven’t been disappointed at all. So far I’m only met one person who reads my blog. After last spring’s moving sale, Rev. Jay came by my house in Alabama with a young deaf woman in tow. He was helping collect household leftovers to furnish her first apartment. I’ve since learned Rev. Jay and his wife have continued to mentor the young lady. Soon, she’ll fly for the first time to Washington, D.C. to visit Gallaudet University. Gallaudet University, the nation’s premiere school for deaf students, is itself another blogging adventure and is how I met Rev. Jay to begin with.

I’ve written about race and politics, and I pride myself on a civil response to anyone who disagrees since these two subjects can generate different points of view. I have, after all, sat down with the KKK’s Robert Shelton for an interview (okay, I was a student in J-class). My style would be defined as anti-shouting; however, I warn you that I do tend to climb up on my soapbox and I can get a little preachy. If you want shouting go watch Sean Hannity, Bill O’Reilly or Nancy Grace. So, if you visit with Miz Sheila, I expect you to keep a civil tongue if you want to tell me what you think.

People know I’m a Yellow Dog Democrat who first voted for George McGovern but who is unhappy with her party and doesn’t want Hillary Clinton to be the nominee. People know I’m a Unitarian who tries to be respectful of all faiths, even the snake handlers. Boy do my readers know about College Boy and his search for a college home. Readers have cyber-held this helicopter parent’s hand and reassured me that CB will learn to get himself up for class and he will be fine. And you what, everybody; you were right. Least so far.

Readers know I lost a beloved English Springer Spaniel named Samantha but gained an exuberant granddog English Springer Spaniel named Monte. I’ve shared photos of trips to Italy, Chicago and farmers markets and fairs. I’ve posted recipes for red velvet cake, puzzling questions and calls to action. You will know if you become a regular that I need to get back to the gym to keep the weight off I lost on the South Beach Diet, which I also wrote about last year.

And that’s a rather long-winded answer to a simple question.

17 comments:

Lorelei said...

I am attempting to be one of your regulars. :) I found you through Marsha's blog, and since I will soon have a CB of my own, I enjoy your perspective and any tips and experiences you share with us on that subject particularly.

Personally, I blog because I am.

Sheila said...

Dang if that isn't the best explanation and a whole lot shorter than mine. I will be posting more about College Boy as time goes by. Hug your pre-CB and treasure these days he is still at home. Blink and he'll be gone. Good luck with the search for a college unless he's already got one in mind. A good resource for parents and students alike is College Confidential at http://talk.collegeconfidential.com/

Marsha said...

Great reasons to blog. I do enjoy the respectful debates on your blog. Thanks for that link, I will be sure to use it as my baby is only two years away from college herself.

I was reading an article in the paper today about the lack of negative campaigning of the current political campaigns. The article suggested that this was not really a good thing for us, the voters as the negative stuff rouses us and also helps to educated us about our politicians flaws. While, I completely disagree, I wonder what you think? Are we better off with the negative campaign ads and attempts by the candidates to smear one another or better off with civil debates?

Sarge Charlie said...

Well now Miss Sheila, I reckon you must have a right nice blog here if you let me stop by and chew the fat now and then. And besides that, how could you ever learn that the Dems are no better than the Repubs, I am thinking that all any of them want is the power that goes along with the office.

What ticks me off is the fact that we are repeating the same mistakes we made in Vietnam, we have a fine bunch of solders in harms way, and an excellent General in charge, why can't we just let them win and get it over with... Oh well, I think I am dragging this out to much, If you want some fire and brimstone come over to my place and leave an Anonymous comment, those folks set me off.

Now if you would I would like a slice of that red velvet cake and a cup of black coffee, y'all stop in now, ye hear.......

Sheila said...

Marsha,
I hope your daughter has a smooth transition to post high school life. The time will fly by. Take a moment tonight and tell yourself that and when she is snarky tell yourself you will miss her one day sooner than you'd imagine.

I agree with you about the negative ads and a civil debate. I just think we have started so soon that by the time election day rolls around, we are going to be so tired of this crew of candidates that any one will do. No seriously, I don't think that.

Here's what gets my dander up. Iowa and New Hampshire voters are courted and they are so tiny. I was hoping that with states moving up their primaries we actually kind of have a national primary with many states voting on the same day. That way, my vote would have a little meaning. By the time it comes for me to weigh in, I'm afraid the decision will have already been made and that makes me mad.

With Karl Rove running loose, I'll bet it won't be long before we see the negative ads cropping up. Of course, this stuff is on both sides, but the Republicans just seem better at it.

Sheila said...

To clarify. The states are tiny--not the voters.

Sarge,
I'm always happy to have you visit. You are always civil and we can disagree and still discuss our viewpoints without name calling.

The war is one such disagreement. It's not an easy answer but I don't trust our present leadership. I trust our soldiers to everything in their power to do what is asked of them though.

Now, that cake is one thing we can agree on. If more of us would sit across from each other and quit imagining horns on the heads of those we disagree with, there might be some forward movement toward understanding each other. I'll bet Miss Bee has a good recipe for red velvet cake too.

Jay Croft said...

Thanks for the mention, Sheila. We're counting down the days when she steps on an airplane for the first time!

My first plane flight was in 1961, on an Ozark Airlines 27-passenter DC-3. I remember not daring to shift my weight (which was much less than it is now). It made two stops between Des Moines and O'Hare, barely skimming the corn fields.

Joe said...

Whatever the reason you started, I am sure glad I found your blog.It is great.

Sheila said...

Jay,
I am excited for Yvonne too and I'm not even going. I guess I just know how broadening your world opens your mind and your soul.

Ozark Airlines. Wow! That's a while ago. My first plane ride was on Eastern Airlines in 1969 and I flew from Alabama to Washington, D.C. with a bunch of REA essay winners. We all had written an essay on what the REA meant to rural Alabama and were selected to represent our co-ops. I met the congressional delegation and sat next to Sen. John Sparkman who nodded off at breakfast. Maybe I'll blog about that.

Joe,
I'm very appreciative to have visitors like you. Glad to have discovered your writing too.

jan said...

Probably every blogger has a reason to start blogging, but those who continue to blog, as you and I, find, as you say, that the blog takes on a life of its own when we meet interesting people with similar or very different interests.

Sheila said...

Yes, Jan, you are right. I've had a lot of fun and met a boatload of interesting people I wouldn't have otherwise met. Thanks for visiting.

Marion said...

What a terrific post! I love your blog because you always tell it like it is and you are not afraid to do so. It is extremely heartening to me...you are a role model!

and that Red Velvet Cake?...it is indeed scrumptious...I made it, it lasted for a blink of an eye!

Sheila said...

Marion,
You are my favorite! Thanks so much.

Naomi said...

I'm glad you do blog Sheila. I love your writing style and the way you're not afraid to speak your mind. The subject matter is always good too. This is one of my favourite blogs and I really enjoy my visits here.

Sheila said...

Naomi, you are so kind and I always love hearing from you.

RomanceWriter said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RomanceWriter said...

I am stopping by to tell you the Blog Rodeo is up and thank you for taking part. I enjoyed reading your post and can relate best to the part about your son going to college. I know just how it feels to worry about the very thing. I see the way my brothers behave at home ( looking at the washing machine as if it is some strange, magical device from outer space) and wonder how they can make it alone in the world. But they manage. Sink or swim, I suppose.

Anyway, thank you for taking part and I hope you will stop by some of the other sites that are linked to The Rodeo.

Hope you have a great day,

Sara.