I’ll never forget one particular dinner party we had during the Hawaii years. The evening weather was characteristically perfect, and we left the doors to the lanai open so the breeze could come into the living room and dining room as it pleased. The pork tenderloin I prepared for dinner turned out tender and delicious. Everyone’s kids played together beautifully, and this left plenty of room for the grown-ups to connect. All was well until later in the evening when one friend eyed me up and down and said, Kristen, this is the wrong kind of outfit for you.
I looked down at my tank top and shorts and thought it is? How does one go wrong with a basic tank top and shorts? Did I look foolish? Crazy? Clashy?
She never elaborated, and for the majority of the evening I was able to push my guest’s comment to the back of my mind. But when I went to bed that night, I replayed her suggestion and decided the only two choices were to accept it or move on. The truth was I liked my outfit–it wasn’t anything special but it was cute and comfy and let me prepare dinner without getting all sweaty (one must consider the sweat factor when living on a tropical island).
So, I moved on.
Now, I am certainly not above taking advice from others on any assortment of matters. But even then, listening to and accepting someone’s advice usually means I agree with that person and believe his or her words will bring me closer to a certain goal. If I don’t agree? Well, I just smile and move on.
I am finding the same thing is true with blogging. As is the case for many a New Year, much has been written on the state of blogging lately. Blogging is dead! It’s on life support! Much has been written about how to do it right and how to do it wrong. Do this or your blog will die, too! After reading various articles here and there, I find I have the same two choices I did at that long ago dinner party: I can either take the person’s advice or move on.
I gotta say, I do a lot of moving on.
The popularity and purpose of blogs may change and trends may come and go, but I have a strong desire to keep trucking along here regardless. I’ve been blogging since late 2009, and at Chasing Blue Skies since 2011. There are many things I do differently now than I did in the beginning, but one thing that hasn’t changed is how I view my calling here.
In my writing, I want to choose fresh air over frantic trends.
Lately I’ve spent some time getting to know myself better so I can better give to others and fulfill God’s tailor-made plans for me. Within this process, I have also spent time evaluating what works well here at Chasing Blue Skies so I can be certain I best serve this community.
Here is a short list of what you can expect to find at this little corner of the internet. At Chasing Blue Skies, I will continue to:
- Create a welcoming space that gives folks a lift by way of words and connection.
- Gear content toward helping others see themselves as they truly are–that is, as Jesus sees them.
- Settle into rather than fight against being small. Most days I still feel all 7th grade knees and elbows at this blogging thing, so it’s comforting to find my familiar friends (that means y’all!) at the table. I like the idea of minding my acre and sitting with the folks who are already here, even as we are happy to widen the circle for new friends, too. We are cozy and connected, and that’s my favorite way to be.
- Keep comments open. I love love LOVE the interaction that blog commenting provides. I read every single one of them and reply to as many as my schedule allows. Sometimes, I email the commenter instead. At any rate, removing comments would remove the community feel here (at least in part), and that would make me incredibly sad. Therefore, comments will be staying.
I’m a crockpot kind of writer. And what’s more, I’m a crockpot writer set on low. Most ideas have to simmer a good long while before I can serve them to you. I’ve tried to crank the dial up and force the contents to cook more quickly, but what comes out after attempting this is, not surprisingly, half-cooked. So ya, I do sometimes write slower than I wish I did. But no matter the tempo of my blog’s posts, it feels good to be the boss of my own blog and prayerfully consider what works best for us here.
I plan to keep choosing fresh air over clutter at Chasing Blue Skies, to keep weaving words that are true to our community. I hope you’ll continue to drop by here and there…because I’d sure miss you if you were gone.
And it wouldn’t be the same without you. Much love to you, friends. xo