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Throat Punch Thursday,mommy blogger

Mommy Blogger Means Mommy who Blogs

When did Mommy Blogger become a bad word? The other day, I was accused  by one of my readers at another site I write for ( not you ladies, you rock), who apparently doesn’t know me like you all do, of sitting around in my robe all day and thinking up these “ridiculous” articles. I wish! I believe the article was one in which I compared “real” (meaning those of us who are not celebrities. Not meaning to imply that Beyoncé is not a “real” mom because obviously if she has a baby and is taking care of it, she is “real” not imaginary.) Well, apparently Beyoncé reads that website because someone certainly attacked me for that remark and the only person who I can think of that should get that defensive about Beyoncé would be Beyoncé herself or her mama.

Then it hit me, this is what people think of mommy bloggers. They think we sit around in our pajamas all day, eating bon bons and pecking away at the keyboard while we ignore our kids and live in perpetual squalor. It is no wonder, women writers are so afraid of that title. I assure you that I do not fit any of the stereotypes that people think of when they think of “mommy blogger”. In fact, I’m pretty sure most mommy bloggers don’t.

mommy blogger, blogging, motherhood, blog, social media

This illusion of a mommy blogger is not feasible if you think about it because by the very definition of “mommy blogger” we have children, have given birth and/or are pregnant. This does not allow much time for sitting on our asses and eating bon bons though I wish it did. I have never eaten or seen a bon bon in my life because I have kids. Bon bons would never last in my house. As soon as I would try to put one in my mouth some little person would be in my ear asking for a bite and just as suddenly in my mouth snatching it away.

If anything, a Mommy blogger should be defined as a wonder woman like creature who has given birth, is raising children, has the balls and presumably some talent to write about it openly. I also happen to live like a functioning yet severely affected ADHD patient.

[fusion_builder_container hundred_percent=”yes” overflow=”visible”][fusion_builder_row][fusion_builder_column type=”1_1″ background_position=”left top” background_color=”” border_size=”” border_color=”” border_style=”solid” spacing=”yes” background_image=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” padding=”” margin_top=”0px” margin_bottom=”0px” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_direction=”left” hide_on_mobile=”no” center_content=”no” min_height=”none”] You can grab your own Proud Mommy Blogger button under the “about” tab.

A Mommy Blogger is a Multitasker Extraordinare

I sit down to write during naps.Five minutes in someone usually yells out for me. I walk past a toy in the hallway and pick it up. Then I walk into the bedroom to be told that little Suzy needs a drink of water. I grab her hamper and carry the clothes to the laundry room and start the washer. While the washer is filling, I walk to the cupboard to grab a cup. I fill the cup and then I wash the few dishes that are in the sink. I load the washer, walk back to the child’s bedroom and hand her the water. She asks for a tissue. I walk into the bathroom to grab a tissue. Clean the sink and make it free of toothpaste. I pick up the wet towels from this morning. I walk back across the hall, hand Suzy a tissue, give her a kiss and walk towards the laundry room. Out the corner of my eye, I see that the living room coffee table is covered in puzzles and coloring books and the cushions need to be fluffed. I take the laundry to the laundry room. As I walk through the kitchen towards the living room, I see that there are crumbs from breakfast on the table. I grab the sponge and begin to wipe the table. My phone dings. I have a text message from my husband. I call the insurance company to ask about a statement. While I listen to musak, I fluff pillows and put away puzzles. The living room is tidy. I take the pillow the girls drug from my bedroom back to my bed. Musak continues. I notice I still need to fix my bed. I fluff the comforter and realize there are loveys in my bed. More musak. I finish fluffing my pillows and straightening my bed then I walk across the hall to put the lovey on my youngest daughters shelf. Musak is still playing. She stirs and I have to stop what I am doing and soothe her back to sleep. Tip toeing out of the room, the musak suddenly stops and a very loud insurance agent yells, “Mary Jane Magilicutty, How may I help you?” Startled, I run out of the room. 20 minutes later, I am done being transferred, pressing one and explaining to this agent the extent of my stress incontinence. I am about to lose my mind. I walk to my desk to continue writing my article that I started an hour ago when the kids first went down for their nap. Shit! I forgot I need a cup of coffee. I walk to the coffee maker and begin the process of making a cup. I can’t find the creamer. I go in search of the creamer. It’s at the very back of the refrigerator behind the apple juice, organic milk and leftovers. I finally get to it and the apple juice, whose lid was apparently not closed, falls out of the refrigerator and spills on the ground. 20 minutes and a lot of cussing later I am headed back to my desk with tepid coffee after mopping up the juice. I walk over to my desk, sit down and type one sentence and a little one walks up to me and tells me they are awake. Breathe. Wait. Repeat. That, my friends, is the day in the life of a Mommy blogger.

This is my day, every day. I work in 5-minute increments and then I stay up until the wee hours of the night to make up the difference. Bon bons? I can barely sneak in a minute to eat a piece of stale cold toast. So don’t tell me that Beyoncé does more than me before 8 am because I am still asleep and then I sit in my robe all day. Hey fuck you! I run circles around Beyoncé. She has a team of people to do what she does. I am a team of one for most of the day. It’s just short people, who I can barely understand, and me. Being a Mommy blogger means I not only do all the Mommy duties of my day, I throw in researching, writing and thinking up interesting things to say.Well, things to say. Do you have any idea how hard that is when I have a raging case of Mommy brain, 2 little ones in my ear talking about everything that has ever happened to them and anyone they know and trying to remember birthdays, anniversaries, appointments, meetings and deadlines?

It’s hard but I do it because I LOVE it. I love my girls, I love my husband, I love my job and I want it all. Am I exhausted? Yes. Do I say some things that are irreverent? Yes, I am too tired to over think it. Do I make mistakes? Hell, yeah. Do I feel mental? Yes. So throat punch to anyone who thinks mommy bloggers sit around in their robes all day.  Now, pass the fucking bon bons, I’m hungry, exhausted and I have a deadline and I’ve only got 5 minutes before the kids wake up again.

What do you think when you hear the word Mommy blogger?

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Throat punch Thursday

Throat Punch Thursday~Mommy Blogger

Lately, there’s been a lot of controversy over the term Mommy Blogger.  Yes, I know I should be giving a hefty Throat Punch to Casey Anthony for being worst mom of the century but I think I’ve wasted enough time on making this sad and sorry woman into a celebrity. This is my last opinion on the subject: Casey Anthony is a woman who clearly has problems and has to live the rest of her life knowing that she has let her daughter down; that she will never hold Caylee in her arms again and that no matter what the jury decided, in the American Public’s eye, she is guilty in thought, word and action. In the end, she is alone and she is culpable.

Moving on, as I was saying, the very term

Mommy Blogger

seems to be inciting revolutions. I am a Mommy who is a blogger. But I don’t blog about JUST being a Mommy. I am a human, with a vast array of thoughts and emotions. I have 38 years of life, experience and wisdom to share. I am worth more than the sum total of all my parts. It’s really disturbing to me to hear Moms who are bloggers disgusted and disgruntled by the fact that they are called mommy bloggers.  It is said in the blogging community almost as a dirty word or an insult.

You know how you hear that teachers are not being paid very much and you think “what? These are the people educating our future” and then you think to yourself, “These people she be paid a million dollars a year.” They ARE making a difference. This is how I feel about Mommy bloggers.

Or when you realize that there are entire countries where men think women are useless and have no voice. No opinion. No merit. It begs the question, how the fuck do you think you got here? There are entire continents that don’t want baby girls. But baby girls grow up to be women and women have babies. Babies perpetuate the human race. See where I’m going with this? Mommies are what make the world go round. Mommy bloggers share these experiences.

Mommy Blogger

So,when I hear a negative connotation associated with being a Mommy Blogger, it pisses me off. I work hard on my blog. I pour my heart, blood, sweat and tears onto the page to share with my readers. It’s not always about babies pooping, first days of kindergarten or photos of how cute my kids are. It’s not always gushing. Sometimes it a woman on the ledge sharing the deepest recesses of hardest moments of life. Sometimes I blog about how current events are effecting the world. Other times I use my life experiences and education to help my readers broaden their horizons and open their minds. Some days, I am pure sunshine and rainbows and am here to make you smile and laugh heartily. Either way, I think I serve a purpose for my readers and I know having the opportunity to share serves a purpose for me.

The worst part is that not only is the term Mommy Blogger used in a derogatory way, it’s used most often by other bloggers. Worse still is the jealousy and competition that comes, not only from traditional journalists, but that from within the blogging community itself. I have met some amazing Mommies who are bloggers. I have learned so many important life lessons by sharing a community with these wise women…these mothers. But then, every once in a while, I see envy and competition raise it’s head. Is this where the negative view of Mommy Blogger is derived from?

mommy blogger

The Throat Punch this week goes to self-loathing Mommy Bloggers and all those who think that just because a blogger is a Mommy that she is less respectable than any other writer in social media. Shame on you! We are Mommies who Blog…hear us roar! And just because we share about parenting, doesn’t give you carte blanche to know every single thought we’ve ever had or the right to delve deeper than we are willing to share.

What is your definition of a Mommy Blogger? Are you a Mommy Blogger? Are you embarrassed to be called such? Or are you loud and proud? Love to hear your thoughts.

If you want the badge,grab it on the tool bar under buttons

Proud Mommy Blogger

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Mommy Bloggers of the world unite, mommy,blogger, blogging social media, brands

Call to action: Mommy Bloggers of the world Unite.

I have the greatest job in the world. I am a Mommy. On top of that, I am a Mommy Blogger; triple bonus. I adore my life on most days. I can’t even tell you how much I love combining two of my greatest passions in the world.  But there is only one problem, financially speaking, being a Mommy blogger is almost as thankless and unpaid a job as mothering. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE doing both (on most days) but thus far it seems there is a lot of assumption that I owe people something.

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Mommy Bloggers of teh World Unite, bloggers, mommy, social media, blogging

Photo courtesy of Google image/ Photographer name not available

I love being a Mommy and parenting. I may not be paid in money but I am certainly compensated in hugs and kisses, “I love you”s, pride and joy. There is something about giving and receiving unconditional love that transcends any monetary value. It is truly priceless. So, really, parenting may be some of the hardest work that I’ve ever done but it is not without its reward. It has changed me in ways that I could not have ever fathomed and it has made me a better person in the world. Truly.

Being a Mommy blogger, I really enjoy meeting new people and connecting via social media. Seriously, these connections have saved my life on many occasions. Being able to share my journey of motherhood through blogging has been a dream come true in many ways. Many of the Mommy Bloggers that I know are quite frankly brilliant. These women know the ins and outs of social media, can light up Twitter like a Christmas tree, get a cause out on Facebook in lightening speed and blog change better than any so-called professional. It’s because we have learned by hands on experience. We are living social media. For so long, moms have needed a connection to the outside world while being home all day with little people. You can’t teach the social media savvy we have. It comes from experience and a place of authentic enthusiasm. We love what we do and we are good at it. We are influential through our connections via our loyal blog communities, our Facebook friends, Twitter followers and all the other social media outlets we allow ourselves to become productive members of on a daily basis.

Mommy Bloggers of the World Unite

My issue is that for some reason, many brands think that we should work for free. It’s insulting! I have been approached to write dissertations in exchange for lip-gloss, spread drug propaganda for FREE and plaster my sidebar with widgets in exchange for dildos. What am I? A whore? Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for supporting a brand that I love. Hell, I’ll shout it from the rooftops. Why wouldn’t I spread it like wildfire if I had the world’s best camera or tried the universe’s best weight loss program? I’m not greedy. I want to share the good news with my friends, family and readers.

But if I take the time and effort to truly experience your product/brand and write an honest product review don’t I deserve to be paid in actual money? Seriously, you are not my children so you can’t pay me in hugs, kisses and ‘I love you’s. You will never compensate me in pride or grandchildren. No thank you on the dildos, lip-gloss and the toilet paper, for that matter. And if one more person asks me to write a post for coupons I may reach through the computer and across the Internet and choke someone out. If I do it for free that’s called a favor and I’m pretty sure that we are not friends, so what would motivate me to write about your product for free? Would you ask your doctor to operate on you, as a favor? Would you ask the waiter to let you have your food gratis, as a favor? Would you ask your dentist to do your root canal, as a favor? No. Hell no, you wouldn’t and you’d feel stupid for even considering asking it. But why is it OK for you to ask me to spend my time, my effort and my skill doing you a favor? Bloggers are people too. We deserve to be paid for our skill, for our marketing capabilities and for our reach. Because remember, we have something just money can’t buy..loyal readers, earned trust and WE CAN BLOG IT with integrity.

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Mommy Bloggers of the world unite, mommy,blogger, blogging social media, brands

Image of Rosie the Blogger, © Michael Licht

So, fellow Mommy Bloggers please stand united with me and demand that you be compensated for your time, your effort and your skill. Let the world know that we may be cheap but we are not easy and we’re certainly not free. Every moment a Mommy blogger spends writing about your brand is a moment we are sacrificing with our children and that time is precious and should be compensated accordingly. (*Thank you Lauren for reminding me of that important point.)

Mommy Bloggers of the World Unite

Button can be found under the “buttons” tab  at the top of page.

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I was recently talking to a fellow Mommy Blogger over the whole Mommy Blogger name, are you proud to be a Mommy Blogger or are you embarrassed to be associated with the term? I , for one, am PROUD to be a Mommy Blogger. It allows me to combine a few of my greatest passions; My family & role as a wife and Mommy, writing, and sisterhood through Motherhood! So, I’ve created a badge. If you are a Mommy Blogger and proud of it, please snag the badge and code ( located to the right of this post..scroll down a little) and display it on your site! Happy Mommy Blogging!

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authenticity online, authentic online, real me, mommy blogger, blogger,mommy guilt, parenting fail, missing firsts, tap, dance

Disclosure: This post about authenticity online was inspired and sponsored by Domain.ME, the provider of the personal domains that end in .ME. As a company, they aim to promote thought leadership to the tech world. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

When I started this blog, The TRUTH about Motherhood, I was known to the Internet as Truthful Mommy. I picked this pseudonym because I planned to bust every parenting myth that ever existed and I was a little leery about putting my face to my truth. I didn’t plan on being the poster child for authenticity online but I had every intention of being the real me.

I wanted to be the voice of the “regular” mom but I wasn’t sure that I was a “regular” mom because I felt like I was doing it so wrong. I didn’t think I was special in anything but my inadequacy. I just wanted to have an open and honest dialogue with other moms online or offline about the ups and downs of motherhood and life. I exist beyond just being a “mommy blogger” on the internet. I am a real person and people need other people. This isn’t just my job, it’s my life. I just wanted a place where I could be my own authentic self.

When I had my first daughter, suddenly, I found myself overwhelmed and completely out of my depth as a parent and as a human being. Every other mom I met made everything look so effortless and they weren’t telling me otherwise. I felt like the ultimate failure. I had so many questions.

Why was my 9-month old crawling backwards? Why couldn’t I ever make the arm to bed transition? Were my kids going to co-sleep until they left for college? Did no one else’s 2-year-old drop the F bomb? Why wouldn’t my toddler eat anything other than damn chicken nuggets? Why was I making all the wrong parenting choices when everyone else was making the right ones? Was I born missing the mom gene?

All the other moms looked so put together at Kinder Music and the Little Gym and I looked like death warmed over.  Motherhood looked effortless on them; like those 18-year-olds who just wake up and look gorgeous. Those were the days before Zombies were all the rage but I’m pretty positive I was the original Mombie. I was perpetually exhausted and about as far away from perfect as I could get. I mean, I was a nice person, trying my best but my best just felt like it fell short.

Then I “really” got to know the other moms and I realized those broads were just as exhausted and out of their depth as I was but they had something called dry shampoo and they never told me about their mommy woes because they were afraid I was going to think less of them. ME? The woman who hadn’t slept in 2 years. The woman who only wore pony tails and makeup she could put on in 2 minutes or less because little people needed every bit of my attention. That’s when I knew, I had to tell the truth for all of our sakes. So I did and it was glorious.

I had to be honest to have authenticity online or it was pointless.

To be fair, I’ve never been much of a liar anyways and my poker face is completely nonexistent so it’s not like I really had a choice but I chose to be the voice of honesty, not necessarily reason, on the internet and that’s what I’ve been doing for the past 7 years. I hope I’ve helped a few people along the way. If comments and private messages are any indication, I’ve had my moments of truth that have landed on desperate ears that needed to know they weren’t alone. That alone was worth bearing my soul naked on the Internet.

I can’t imagine not being my authentic me online or anywhere else in my life. I don’t have the time or desire to be anyone else. I’m definitely rough around the edges, I’ve been known to curse on occasion, and I don’t always say the right thing but who I am online is who I am in person. In fact, the best compliment I’ve ever received has been when meeting readers in real life and having them say that I am exactly who I am online.

I am fully aware that there are times when I overshare and maybe should keep some things to myself. There are times when I hit the publish button and it terrifies me to think what a reader half way across that world might think of me; after all, my skeletons are not hiding neatly in some closet, they are right here for anyone with Google to read. But I can’t over censor myself and pretend that my life is all rainbows and sunshine all the time because it’s not. Sometimes it is but sometimes it’s really shitty; so I share it all here.

For me, being authentic online is the only way that I know how to be. Life is too short to spend all of my time trying to create some fake perfect virtual world that only serves to make others feel bad about what they’re doing. I refuse to be part of the problem. This is me and if you’ve ever read this blog, you know that I’m not perfect but at least with me, you know what you’re getting.

How do you stay true to yourself in life?

What is your definition of authenticity online?

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Lacey Spears, Garnett Spears, Munchausen by proxy, poisoning, sodium, child killer

The news is reporting that a 26-year-old upstate New York mom, Lacey Spears, has been arrested and pleaded not guilty to charges of second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter in the death of her son, Garnett.

Garnett, Lacey Spears’ 5-year-old son died in January and hospital workers found toxic levels of sodium in his blood. The accusation is that Lacey was intentionally giving her little boy high amounts of salt, even when he was hospitalized. Garnett had been hospitalized many times throughout his young life.  Spears took Garnett to the hospital on January 17, 2014 and then on January 19th and allegedly administered sodium directly into a stomach tube. An investigation also revealed that Lacey Spears had searched the Internet to study what effects large amounts of salt would have on the body of a child and allegedly asked an acquaintance to discard of an IV bag that had salt residue in it.

On January 20th, Garnett was alert. On January 23rd, he died and Lacey Spears posted to social media, “Garnett the great journeyed onward today at 10:20 a.m.,”

Lacey Spears, Garnett Spears, Munchausen by proxy, poisoning, sodium, child killer

The media is crying Munchausen by Proxy syndrome, claiming that this “mommy blogger” ( though she only ever wrote 2 posts) slowly poisoned her child out of her own sick desire to be needed as his caregiver, to get sympathy from others and to gain traffic for her blog ( yeah, the blog with 2 posts). This could be true. Everyone is also suspicious of her need to report everything on social media. Alert the presses, a new mom is posting about everything her child does on social media in 2014.

This alone does not a murderer Lacey Spears make.

Hello, it’s 2014, most moms are reporting every poop their child takes on social media. It has become second nature and if documenting her son’s struggles on social media is a crime, well, let’s just say, she’s not the only one guilty. We all KNOW people who’ve snapped an ER photo and uploaded to Instagram or reported on their child’s sickness on FB, Twitter or their blog. Is it in poor taste? Hell yeah. Does it deduce murder? I’m not sure.

Me, I don’t know her. Maybe she killed her little boy on purpose or maybe she was desperate and sick and accidentally killed him. What I do know is that her son is dead. What I also know is that Lacey Spears was not a mommy blogger. I am offended that the media keeps calling her one because they are only doing it to sensationalize the whole thing. As if the case is not sick enough already ( a little boy is dead, people) but let’s make it even more despicable by alluding to the fact that his mom was always online  and solely for the attention; that she was exploiting her child and his illness for traffic and sympathy. Maybe she was or maybe she was looking for support. I don’t know. I do know that, as a mom who blogs herself, I have turned to the Internet for support many times. This is my tribe. When I miscarried, the Internet was able to support me in a way that the people in my real life could not because I was like an open wound and too fragile to face family and friends in person. The Internet can be a one-sided conversation and sometimes that is just what is needed. The Internet has helped me feel not alone when I was parenting toddlers alone for 2 solid years/5 days of the week because a down economy forced my husband to work and live in another state. The Internet has been my community for 5 years, my blog, Facebook and Twitter are our meeting places. My blog community is my safe place. It offends me that the media is trying to make the entire thing out to be a seedy group of deviant parents who neglect their children and use the Internet as a place to validate their own bad behavior.

Maybe she really was just a worried mother, he was her baby, maybe she made poor choices and went too far. Maybe she was young, single and alone and didn’t know what to tell her son when he asked where his dad was. Maybe his dad was a tool who didn’t want to be a daddy. Maybe a lie to soften the blow on the heart of a small child was the best she could do or maybe she was plain crazy and so afraid of losing the only person she knew truly belonged to her that she did poison him to keep him dependent on her. Maybe it went further than she had intended? I don’t know and I am assuming most of you don’t either but people are calling her names, remarking on her son’s long hair, her short hair, and the story she told her son about who his father was.

What we know is a sweet, innocent little boy is dead and ,whether killed accidentally or on purpose, if she did indeed poison him his mother has to live the rest of her life knowing she had something to do with that. If she did kill him on purpose, she is a monster. The more I have read about the case, she seems to be prone to lying and somewhat delusional. She needs mental help. I’m praying it was all an accident, but I fear it wasn’t.

The one thing I know for sure is that a little boy died and lived in a very painful way and that breaks my heart but that is all I truly know about this case and my heart doesn’t want to believe that a mom could intentionally kill her only child, especially in such a long, drawn out and painful way. Rest in peace, sweet Garnett.

This whole Lacey Spears situation deserves a giant throat punch.

Lindsay Spears, Garnett Spears, Munchausen by proxy, poisoning, sodium, child killer

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This post is for my fellow Mommy bloggers. I know some of you don’t like to be pigeonholed by the term. I, myself, am pretty proud of it. I have only been writing this blog for about 2 years, but in that time I have surrounded myself with a wonderful community or women and men; mostly parents and bloggers.  I have met amazing women all over the globe. My friend and advice pool has increased exponentially. I have also learned that there is a definite pecking order in the community, as there is in any social circle. People with seniority are obviously going to know more about the field and have more experience and insight. This is nothing new. This is the way of the world.

Last night, I was checking my Twitter stream and I saw a confusing tweet about Top Tier (more seasoned) Mommy Bloggers and it linked to a post. I won’t link that post because I don’t like to give traffic to what I think is a malicious rant. I wasn’t sure if the tweet was in agreement of the post or against it. So, my interest was piqued and I had to read it for myself.The jist was that it was a complaint rant ( a whine, if you will) about how Top Tier Mommy bloggers are aloof and “take” all the opportunities and that the only reason they have the opportunities that they have is because they were here first.She went on to insinuate that the entire “community” that they inundate themselves with is nothing more than a handful of other Top Tier Mommy bloggers. The entire post felt to me like a platform to attack. Of course, it is her blog and she is entitled to say whatever she wants about whatever she wants.It’s her opinion but it really felt like sour grapes to me.

I am NOT a big name blogger, by any means. I fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum of Mommy bloggers.But I can say this with complete authority, these women are where they are because they are talented writers, they work hard to network, they put themselves out there with their writing and most have been working hard at this for years.YEARS!The writer of the post says that the Top Tier Mommy bloggers “worm” their way into every single internet uproar referencing the Today Moms and Babble.com. These bloggers are the authority because they’ve been doing it the longest and gotten exposure for being pioneers in the field. The Today Show and Babble go to them first because the Top Tier Mommy bloggers are the ones who have been here for the longest. FYI, I know several “new” bloggers (especially int he NYC area) who have several media opportunities. So, it’s not just about being in that elite group. You have to be available and engage in social media. You can’t sit on a Mommy blogger throne and just think you are so special that the world must come to you. We are all moms. We grow babies and share our experience, have opinions..the end. Most are not independently wealthy, they are paid in prestige. They are paid in mattresses, trips and cameras.They write because they love to write. They write to maintain their sanity.They write because they have something to say. They keep writing because we are reading. I admire them for their fortitude and ambition.It’s hard to keep working so diligently on a goal that is almost impossible to reach.Mommy blogging is about as hard as actual Mommying, with much less rewards.

I wonder if the blogger who wrote the post has even ever tried to reach out to these so called Top Tier bloggers? I have. I have networked and chit chatted with just about every single one of them via Twitter, FB, our blogs, email and various other blogging platforms. You know what? The ones I’ve interacted with are very friendly, willing to guide/mentor a new blogger, gracious and smart. They don’t shut new bloggers out. But, as a new blogger, you have to be willing to engage, introduce yourself. They don’t know you. How could they? You’ve never met. It’s common sense, just like in your real life relationships.You have to make an effort. You can’t sit on your ass and expect Mohammad to come to the mountain. Most of us are not that fucking special.In fact, no one is that fucking special. Life is about relationships. You get out what you put in.

It’s ridiculous that I have to defend these ladies for doing nothing wrong. This post I read talks about community and the TOP TIER bloggers keeping it very elite and cliquey when she herself is the one who is attacking; shutting them out. They are not writing about keeping people out. She is. I think this is more a case of sour grapes than anything else. This is where the dysfunction comes from in this community.Not from Top Tier Mommy bloggers shutting people out but from whiny bloggers giving up and looking for someone else to blame for their own shortcomings. Work hard, persist and persevere or give up and shut up. Either way, stop complaining.

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Ree Drummond, The Pioneer Woman, bloggers, This Blogger's Life, blogging, interview

Today, I am honored to welcome a woman who needs no introduction and is a force to be reckoned with in the blogging community, Cecily Kellogg to This Blogger’s Life.

I have “known” Cecily for a few years now but finally had the pleasure of meeting her last year at BlogHer. When I met her I found her to be more beautiful in person than she appears online ( that sounds wrong but what I mean is that she is such a vibrant woman and I don’t feel that comes across fully online) and she is one of the kindest and most down to earth people I’ve ever met. She greeted me with a hug and felt like an old friend almost immediately.

I’ve always enjoyed reading UpperCase Woman for the transparency of her words and she’s always writing about what’s new and changing on the Internet.  Cecily is a kind soul whose words have weight. She is a doer in the world. She sees something wrong, she puts her back into it and she tries to make a difference. I love that about her.

Cecily is truly one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook. She looks hardcore like she could kick your ass ( and she probably could if you got on her bad side) but I think you’d be hard pressed to find someone nicer.

I’m honored to call Cecily Kellogg my friend and it’s my privilege to have her on This Blogger’s Life today.

This Blogger’s Life…Cecily Kellogg

Cecily Kellogg, UpperCase Woman, DoubleGood Media, This Blogger's Life, the people behind the blogs, blogging

Why did you start blogging?

 

In 2003 I was desperately trying to get pregnant and couldn’t. Someone on a fertility message board

linked to a handful of blogs and I finally found my tribe. I devoured those blogs and the blogs they all

linked to, and by March of 2004 I started blogging myself.

 

What’s one piece of advice that you would give to a new blogger?

 

Don’t blog about deeply personal things if you’re a sensitive person. I’m sensitive – even hypersensitive

– and my own psychological makeup means I don’t have many tools for creating barriers between what

people say about me and how I react to them, although I am working on it (part of this is also because I’m

an alcoholic; we tend to take everything very personally).

 

What are the three words that describe you best?

 

Loud, funny, and sensitive.

 

What is your favorite website?

 

Oh god, just one? I couldn’t possibly begin to narrow that down. I mean, I live online. It’s like asking

someone what their favorite song is. From what decade? In what genre? I utilize so many for my life and

work I can’t imagine picking one. They are all just tools for doing what I do.

 

What is your favorite thing to do when you’re not blogging?

 

Cuddling with my daughter, or hiking.

 

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned about yourself from blogging?

 

That I am a great writer.

 

How do you balance life and blogging?

 

I actually just read a really good article about this idea of balance that we’re constantly told to strive for.

I no longer believe in balance. I just do what needs doing and try to make sure I take time to eat well,

exercise, and be with my family – but sometimes that has to all go by the wayside to get the work done I

need to do to support my family.

 

How has blogging changed you or your life?

 

Everything in my life today is because of blogging. While I do have some good hardcore pre-internet

friends in my life, and some great connections with my daughter’s school families, most of my closest

friends are people I’ve met through blogging. It also completely changed my career – not always in the

best ways – and now I run a boutique content marketing agency that serves a very particular niche. While

I’ve struggled as a personal blogger – I recently closed comments on posts because of the chronic abuse

I received from a group of folks – it’s like breathing for me. I can’t imagine life without it.

 

What do you think makes a successful blog? A great blog? Are they one in the same?

 

In the decade I’ve been blogging, that has changed so much. I think a great blog requires all of the

following: excellent writing, great story telling, and a beautiful and user friendly responsive design. It

doesn’t matter what niche the blog falls in, if it has those components it can be a great blog. The blogs I

read the most, however, are either industry blogs about tech/content/social media or are the old-school

blogs written in memoir style that share way too much information and make me fall in love with the story.

 

If you were to stop blogging today, what would you do with the rest of your life?

 

I’ve thought about this so much, and in fact, have set up my life so that I can walk away from blogging if I

need to do so. I’d continue working in online content, just from a business perspective instead of personal

one (which is about 80% of the work I do already). I’d probably expand deeper into marketing work as

well. And I’d finally write that damn book.

 

How do you balance telling your story, without telling the story of others in your life?

 

Ah, the big question. I’ve learned the hard way that sometimes other people don’t want to star in your

story. It’s an awkward dance, of course, because my family is part of my story daily. For instance, I often

write about my father abandoning me as a baby because it has impacted my life in so many ways, but it

can be hard for my siblings to hear how I feel about him. I’ve taken posts down at their request. But the

biggest change, of course, is that my daughter is now eight and reads my blog now and then and I need

to bear that in mind when I write about her. She approves every post where I speak only about her, and

any photos I post of her. Eventually, I imagine, I won’t be able to write about her at all, and that’s okay.

I’m not a mommy blogger anyway.

 

Blogging has changed a lot, just since I started 5 years ago, what do you miss about blogging in

the early days? What do you love that has changed?

 

Blogging wasn’t competitive in the early days. It was, really and truly, about community and supporting

each other. But even so, it was plagued with personalities. I had a huge falling out with another infertility

blogger after I lost my twins around early 2005, and it was rough and divided our community for a while.

While today the competitiveness is mostly around the “fame” and the money, it was there even back then.

I will say that in general the level of vitriol on the web has gotten so, so much worse. That’s the worst

thing by far. Blogging is rather terrifying now; I’ve been threatened with everything from violent rape to

being reported to children’s services and more. Without careful monitoring of what I view online, I would

see non-stop messages about how awful I am. It’s fucking exhausting.

However, the good part is still the community. I have gotten to know so many amazing people through

blogging. I wouldn’t trade that for anything.

 

How do you consistently come up with relevant and shareable content?

 

Well, I obviously find myself fascinating as that is what I generally write about. But I also write about

elements of politics and culture too.

 

If you could have a dinner party for 6 people, living or dead, who would you invite?

 

Honestly? I could list amazing historical figures I’d love to meet, but I’d really rather just have a dinner

party with my “sister wives”, or my closest girlfriends.

 

What’s the one thing that people would be surprised to learn about you?

 

I’m not tough, not even a little. Also, I’m very short and I’m much fatter than I look in my gorgeous avatar

photos.

 

What’s the one post that you are most proud of?

 

This one: https://uppercasewoman.com/2007/04/19/health_vs_life_/

 

Cecily, I know that you are super busy and I really appreciate you taking the time to let me interview you. Thank you for sharing your stories, no holds barred. It was my pleasure to have you on This Blogger’s Life.  xoxo

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mommy blogger, mommy guilt, blogger, parenting, work-at-home

mommy blogger, mommy guilt,working mom, parentingThe first thing I read this morning was a piece by my good friend, Jessica Gottlieb, Which came first the Anxiety Disorder or the Blog? Her post really resonated with me in a lot of ways but the most important takeaway that I had was the realization that I need to live more and blog less. This is nothing new. I have known this for some time now. Hell, I know that I need to back the fuck away from the computer and get out of my head and into my life. I need to unplug and it has never been as evident as it is this summer.

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mommy helper wanted, babysitter, mom and daughter power struggle

Mommy Helper wanted STAT to pick up the slack. Can any mom out there relate? It seems that I, along with every other Mom in the world, may be in need of a little help, in the way of an extra pair of arms, eyes, and ears. Not to say we should evolve into some sort of crazy mutant cyborg with highly functioning ears, eyes, and at least two MORE fully functional arms but something of the like, but not so scary. I was thinking more in the way of a Mommy assistant. I don’t think its too much to ask. CEOs have assistants and all they do is run a company. Moms raise the future, we grow babies, we produce milk for God’s sake. It’s a big job and we need a little help.

Mommy Helper Wanted

Now, I am not referring to a nanny, though that would be nice as well, I suppose. But I really want to do this Mommy gig..hands on, so a Nanny would sort of be cheating..for me. I’m only talking about me. I don’t know your situation and I’m not being judgmental. If you have a nanny at your disposal, you go girl! You are just smarter than me. You probably knew to get an epidural at 4 centimeters too. No heroics. No un-medicated transition labor for you. So I’m a little hard-headed and it takes me longer to give in to reason. I learn….eventually.

READ ALSO: What does Birth Feel Like

Anyways, I think I just need a silent partner who sort of shadows me and picks up the slack. You know, Mommy turns her head..baby starts to roll off the changing table, shadow assistant steps in and stops the whole thing from coming to fruition. Mommy needs to work out, screaming baby wakes up mid-workout; no problem, ninja assistant slips in, puts kid back to sleep…Mommy gets her figure back. Mommy’s running errands, she’s running late; the “assistant” gets dinner started and when Mommy pulls up with sleeping kiddies…oh, yeah, you know what happens next….That wonderful, God bless her, bitch runs out to the SUV and grabs the groceries while you very quietly and meticulously remove the child from the car seat and relocate them to bed. In turn, earning yourself a well deserved hour of quiet to pay bills and hear yourself think.

READ ALSO: This Mom Brain is going to Kill Someone

I bet the Ninja Mommy Helper would be great for fielding people at the door, unwanted phone calls, wrangling playdates gone awry. She could do laundry, dishes ( dishes would be a must), pick up laundry and toy rooms. She could read all the parenting books and highlight the important information in her nightly report to me. She could do all the other stuff while I actually get to be the Mommy! For example, I’d kiss booboos, and she would call to schedule doctors’ appointments. Sweet right? How amazing that would be? I’d be so much less stressed and I am sure that would make me a higher level functioning, all-around much better Mommy. Sign me up. But how to find the perfect babysitter, I’ve got you covered! Check this out.

Silent Ninja Mommy Assistant

So, who could fill such a tall order? A nanny does a lot of Mommying ( at least the ones I know) so that wouldn’t work for me. A maid only does the cleaning, not such an asset if the kid is running around the house naked with scissors. A Mommy’s little helper could go either way, I think it is a great idea in theory but if they’re too young…you end up with another kid on your hands. A babysitter, well, that conjures images of a teenager eating pizza, and texting waiting to get slashed in a B movie while she’s supposed to be watching my kids… so that doesn’t really sound all that appealing. Nothing like putting a kid who attracts Micheal Myers into the situation. No thanks.

READ ALSO: Best Horror Movies to Watch with Your Kids

If you really are in need of a baby sitter you need to find someone reliable. Let’s talk straight, no one is going to love your child the way you do — but maybe, just maybe, with a little due diligence, extensive background checks, and a whole lot of experience you’ll find someone who you can trust for a few hours to keep your child safe and attended to in your absence. I know it feels impossible but it’s not. You can do this, mama. Here are  7 great tips for choosing the right babysitter.

A Daddy is perfect except for the fact that most Daddy’s are missing the “ears” part, I swear they never hear kids yelling and bickering (it’s the thing I envy about my husband the most). But no one else could love or have the kids best interest at heart as much as a Daddy…except for a Mommy, of course! I guess its just my own issue. But I do know unequivocally that I can use some assistance.

Hmmm, I wonder how that whole cloning business is coming. Then I could have a helper that would do everything I expected, in exactly the same way as I would do it myself. It would be me times two. Perfection! Oh, wait, me and myself having PMS at the same time..yikes bad idea. All the “extra” hands in the world aren’t worth that. Guess its back to the drawing board. But if anyone knows of a silent ninja Mommy assistant that would fit the bill, send her my way. I’d even take a Nanny McPhee, but no Mary Poppins. Ms. Poppins gets a little too attached to the kiddies for my taste. You can never be too careful these days.

What would be your ad for mommy helper wanted?

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