Has Blogging Lost Her Soul?

As BlogHer approaches its big 10th year conference in San Jose, long-time bloggers, including many who attended the first conference in 2005, are reflecting on a decade of creativity and community. Most agree on this— blogging has brought us the joy of expression and community. It has given us opportunities, broadened our horizons, and introduced us to life-long friends. But behind the scenes, in emails and in private Facebook groups, we are whispering the other side of the story. Blogging has lost something. Blogging has lost her soul....more
Very good points, all. Bloggers, like everyone who matures, are learning what blogging can -- ... more

Taking It Too Far: Back Off the Girls in Prom Dresses

Last weekend, my best friend and I sat blissfully on a restaurant patio in seventy-degree springtime hoping a waiter or waitress might bring us drinks. While we waited, a group of high school kids dressed for prom started to make their way into the restaurant through the revolving door. One girl got her full princess dress stuck in the door, and my friend and I started talking about how much that must suck, hopefully it didn't leave a mark, how embarrassing, la la la. Then we heard the loud and inebriated ladies to our left commenting on the girls themselves after the kids had barely cleared earshot. ...more
A thought-provoking post. I think you're spot on in your remark about our celebrity culture ... more

14 Ways to Promote Your Blog Posts After You Publish

When you are working on a blog post and your hard work is finished, you click on "publish" and let your masterpiece go live, BUT you are not done yet! There are many steps you need to take to promote that post! All of the traffic coming to your blog will arrive by what you are doing to that post afterwards. The more you promote it, the more traffic and views you will get. Here are some steps you should be doing to every blog post to get maximum exposure! ...more
A newsletter for a blog ... that's amazing! more

The 10 Best Pens, According to Our Facebook Community

When researching my post about planners and organizers last month, the conversation with my co-workers turned away from paper and toward pens. Some of us had some very strong feelings about pens and others did not. ...more
I'm a real pen snob, ashamed to admit it ... I love the Cross gel rollerball and Waterman ... more

Thanks to Everyone Else, My Elf on a Shelf Now Has Low Elf-Esteem

I found a note on my pillow this morning from my Elf on a Shelf. Excuse all the bad puns, I didn’t write it:Dear M,I’m not sure how to put this, so I guess I’ll just come right out and say it: Could you please kick it up a notch with this “Elf on a Shelf” ritual? You see, every night I fly back up to the North Pole to see Santa, along with all the other Elves on Shelves, and all I hear about from the other elves is what a great time they are having at their homes....more
Hysterical and wonderful, on all levels. And wow, I sure am glad my son is 28 and I never had to ... more

I Don't Want to Come to Your Jewelry Party

Dear Mouthy Housewives,My new friend is selling one of those jewelry lines. Stella and Bella or whatever. The jewelry is not exactly my taste, but I feel bad not buying anything. She hasn't pressured me at all, however I don't want this to jeopardize a new friendship. Should I just buy something?Signed,Keep Your Crown Jewels Away From Me   ...more
LOL. Last year I felt obligated to purchase a small plastic jewelry organizer from a neighbor's ... more

The Great USPS Holiday Stamp Debate of 2013: Is the Gingerbread House Offensive?

Over the last few days, there has been a lot of "outrage" and "debate" about the flyer sent out by the USPS featuring a Kwanzaa stamp, a Hanukkah stamp and a gingerbread stamp. To many, this is a glaring omission of the Christmas holiday, there is no stamp that has the words "Christmas" featured in the ad. Note: There are stamps available on the USPS website which have a more traditional Christmas picture and the word "Christmas" on them. According to the USPS, they feature the new holiday stamps in the ad and the gingerbread house is new, end of story....more
I agree with Rebecca's comments below. I wonder: Why do people insist on playing small when ... more

When is Your Most Productive Time to Write?

More Awesomer has a wonderful post that contains four great writing tips, beginning with the idea of finding your "golden hour," that time of the day when you are the most productive when it comes to writing.  The other tips are all things that can be done at any point in the day that have a great effect on the quality of your writing.  All in all, a very valuable post. ...more
I've been a newspaper columnist and features writer for 30 years. Starting when my son was in ... more

Why We Love Our Elf on the Shelf

Well here we are, not a day into the month of December and already I've seen more bitterness about what some moms do over others in terms of the Christmas season. I've already read an ugly handful of articles that mock moms just like me, with dozens of people patting them on the back. And you know what? I'm already sick of it. Sick of the idea that if someone decides something is right for THEIR family, that it must be how it should be done across the board, that somehow certain moms were granted with a supernatural knowledge that the rest of us poor souls were left without. I'm sick of it being OK to mock any mother that goes above and beyond what "you" are choosing (or willing) to do....more
This post caught my eye this afternoon. And while my son is grown and married now, I just had to ... more

Should We Stop Blaming Facebook for Our Unhappiness?

The Atlantic has released a few articles over the years about how Facebook affects our overall happiness, but recently, they suggested another way of looking at the situation: perhaps we need to stop blaming Facebook for our unhappiness.  In other words, we may be misusing Facebook and then blaming the site when our actions bring about our discontent. ...more
Excellent points here. I agree. It's all in how we use it, and what we expect from it. As a ... more