Hey guys! Week’s half over! My mom’s birthday was yesterday and we had a fabulous family dinner at Tyler Florence’s restaurant– it’s one of the best in town. Go here if you come to SF! Always nice to have a birthday excuse to celebrate! They’re famous for their fried chicken, so we got that, some apps, sides, and the most amazing chocolate pudding cake (that everyone was almost too full to eat). YUM. Still full.
Today I thought that it’s time for some confessions…
I’ve been doing some blog-soul-searching lately and it’s time to share a “what’s in my head” and “being honest with you” type post. My one-year blogiversary was January 1st, so now into 13 months of blogging, I feel like I’ve learned a lot, that my thoughts of myself and my blogging have changed, and that I might change directions a little.
Confession #1: I realized over the past few months that I feel uncomfortable labeling myself as a healthy living blogger.
Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE learning about nutrition, staying as healthy as possible, and exercising. But, let me be honest. I’m no expert. I like nutrition, but I’m learning along with the rest of us so I feel like I have no business blogging about it like an expert (IIN grad, RD, etc). I love healthy meals, but mine very rarely come out pretty in photographs. I love to workout and try new exercises, but I am def not a role model and my workouts are low-intensity and not something worth bragging about. They’re just what works for me and posting them sometimes makes me feel guilty that I can’t say I went on a 10 mile run instead.
Also…..the more I focused on taking photos of my food and obsessing over what healthy means and trying to make it tangible in my life enough to blog about it….the less healthy I felt. I actually gained weight last year as I started blogging…and I think that was somewhat due to blogging making me think more about what foods I was eating (aka, think about food all the time!), wanting to bake more just so I could post about it, and make me always feel like I’m trying too hard to keep up. I do better when I focus less on this stuff and just let it become a part of my regular life.
Confession #2: When I went to the FoodBuzz conference in October, I had a blast….but I also realized that I’m not and never will be a food blogger. I love food, of course. I love cooking. But I like following recipes, not creating my own. I’m not actually a very good cook, I just like making very simple and easy dishes that usually aren’t worth sharing (I mean grilled chicken and broccoli is usually what I eat and not very blog-able). I sometimes get frustrated and stressed trying to take photos of what I cook….sometimes I love it, but labeling myself as a Food Blogger makes me feel obligated to cook and photograph daily…and that just doesn’t feel right to me. The people I met at the conference were all so passionate about food and cooking and it just wasn’t me. I didn’t feel authentic. I like reading food blogs, I just will never be one.
Confession #3: BUT despite all this…….over the past year, I’ve grown to LOVE blogging. I LOVE connecting with all of you. You all make my day so much better. Your comments, your feedback, reading your posts and learning about your lives, has made my life so much fuller.
When I started this blog, I was insanely bored at work, had a ton of extra alone time because Jared was training for the Ironman and always out biking or running, and I was craving a creative outlet like none other. Some, but not all of these have changed. Work’s busier. Jared’s not training anymore and home much more often (will have to give you guys an update on his shoulder surgery recovery….it’s slower than expected because the doctor tightened it so much….but he is still getting better every day). And I do still crave a creative outlet. I’d feel like something was missing if I stopped blogging. I really do love it (to my surprise! when i first heard about people sharing their lives and photographing their food on the internet like 6 years ago, i thought it was such a silly concept and i would never get so personal with strangers like that, but ha….things change!)
I LOVE taking photos…and yes, you’ve probably noticed my horrible iPhone-only photos the past 3 months (ugh), but I’m proud to say that as of yesterday, I have a brand new DSL camera (thanks, Dad! nice to have a professional photographer father who upgrades his cameras often enough to pass me down almost-new ones). I plan to play with it this weekend and can’t wait!
So, I want to keep blogging. I just want to take off my “healthy living” label. I feel phony. I feel “not good enough.” And I don’t feel authentic.
Where will I got from here? Keep reading and I’ll tell you what I’m thinking….
Confession #4: A couple months after starting the blog, I started disliking the name, Blueberry Smiles, and thinking it was a silly name for a blog that didn’t really make sense or tell you about what I was writing about. I never changed it because it seemed too late and I couldn’t think of anything else anyways. But now, I think maybe I had some foresight…..I do want to blog about “Smiles,” about the things that make me happy, the brief moments in our lives, the highlights and things that are important to me, the things that make me feel lucky to live life….as a reminder when things get bleak and life is a little harder as it inevitably will be at some point (I really think life is often like a wave, some high points, some inevitable low points, but it all gradually gets better or changes)…..and I do still really like food and want to cherish food, blueberries included, as a celebration of our every day lives. Blueberries to me are symbols of nature at it’s best– they’re so little, so nutrient rich, such a burst of sweetness, and so natural. So the more of “blueberries” in any form in our lives the better.
I probably could have just changed what I wrote about and not wrote this post explaining it to you…and you wouldn’t have noticed a difference. Who knows.
But what I’m thinking is…..
I want to keep sharing my life on the blog, but I will to be more authentic. I’ll stop trying to talk about my workouts or food (unless they’re worth it) and be someone I’m not. I think I’m more interesting of a person when I’m more natural anyways. And as hungry runner girl said a couple weeks ago when talking about blogging, “blog about something you’re passionate about.”…..and I want to get back into that. I know I missed a couple days of my “february thanks” (well i thought of them, just haven’t posted them yet), but I love doing this. I love posting highlights of my day. I love posting interesting articles or things I read. I love posting about what I’ve learned about ironman training, about new places I go, about dog behavior, about life, and sharing my dog toy charity with you guys.
That was my long-winded confession of what’s in my head lately. I hope you’ll keep reading. And now that I’ve gotten that off my chest, I feel like I’ll have an easier and more frequent blogging schedule from now on. And I STILL owe you a Leibster post that I’ve half-written and need to finish. Look for it on Friday
But I’m curious about your thoughts….
– What has blogging taught you about yourself so far?
– How has your blog changed since you first started it?
– What do you like best about blogging?
– Do you ever struggle with authenticity?