Why I Love My InBox

Connecting and Sharing

Admittedly, I spend several hours per day reading blogs, leaving comments, and writing drafts for future posts. It has been my morning practice for the past several years. Blogging satisfies my desire to write and to engage with others who understand and appreciate this form of connection. I have described other bloggers as ‘Pen Pals’ on more than one occasion, but it is more than that. It truly is a community. I love waking up to an inbox filled with new posts to read from people who live in every corner of the globe and with various backgrounds and circumstances. The thing we all have in common – a zest for life.

My blogging community is made up of people who have a positive outlook on life and love expressing their joy through words. If you have ever clicked on the blogs in my sidebar, you will notice some common themes – photography, travel, books, gardening, cooking, philosophy, and education. It is no coincidence that those themes are like threads that weave through and enrich my own life.

Thank You

I am grateful to each of you for inspiration, instruction, entertainment, and most of all, your friendship and positivity. You add an enjoyable and unexpected dimension to my life. Janis’s short stories touch my heart, Kathy and Thom share wise words that make me think, Karen inspires me to cook healthy meals, Deb’s badassness rubs off sometimes, Hugh‘s WordPress expertise is a godsend, Liesbet’s nomadic lifestyle makes me question everything I know about conventional life, Laurel and Eric show us how to handle life’s big transitions with grace, Joe and Helen‘s RV travels and Sarah’s travels around the world take me to amazing places through their beautiful photography and descriptive writing. Beth’s nature photography reminds me to look in my own backyard, Dan wants to see our doors, Judy is a Master Gardner who enjoys the snowbird life, Leanne helps us embrace a slower pace, while Christie reminds us to express gratitude – who wouldn’t want to start each day with such warm and remarkable people.

Natalie hosts a coffee share while Trent invites us to share a smile and Terri challenges us with Sunday Stills. There is always something good to read and something good to cook when the cool kids (Jo, Sue, Debbie, Donna) at What’s on Your Book Shelf and (Donna and Deb) What’s on Your Plate, get together and share.

You can see more of the blogs in my community on my right sidebar. I look forward to following each of you into the new year and beyond.

Ebb and Flow

There is a certain ebb and flow to the life of a blog. Doubt creeps in, making us wonder if it’s really worth it. Things change, life throws us curveballs. We get discouraged by stats or lose motivation for a myriad of other reasons. I read a statistic that more than 80% of bloggers give up their blog after the first year and most won’t last past year number four. We have just completed our sixth year and still feel as though we have something to say. Why we are still here has a lot to do with the fact that we treat our blog as a hobby. We are not in the business of giving advice or selling products. We simply show you (as realistically as possible) what our satisfying retirement looks like, without taking ourselves too seriously. We don’t have unrealistic expectations and we appreciate any attention we receive. Our best reward is your return visit.

I have seen excellent writers fall away from this arena during the past two years and I miss those connections – Erica. Others have slowed the pace Tracey, to suit their current circumstances and some have dropped out altogether – Nancy Dobbins, where are you? Many have changed directions and now host or participate in ‘challenges’ exclusively. And then, there are those still trying to find their niche.

Housekeeping

I recently purged the list of blogs I follow. There are a number of reasons why that has become an annual practice. I typically drop blogs that no longer interest me or those which have not published a post in over six months. I also delete blogs that increase their posting schedule to a cumbersome level. Especially if the original content has suffered.

A bugaboo, but not a deal-breaker is the blogger who doesn’t acknowledge my response to a comment they left on my blog. If you leave a lot of comments on a lot of blogs, I get it. It is time-consuming to circle back, but the whole idea of ‘lifestyle blogging’ is conversation and connection. It just takes a second to click ‘like’ so I will know you read my response. Otherwise, what’s the point of my response?

I will eventually delete blogs that do not have their website linked to their gravatar. I know that excuse sounds thin, but the purpose of displaying blogs I follow on my blog is to attract attention to my community. If I like them, you might also. If the gravatar doesn’t link, it’s useless. The sidebar will only display 50 titles, or images and they are displayed in the order in which I followed them – with the most recent being on top. I don’t like that about WP, and my preference would be to give a priority position to blogs that I have frequent interactions with, but alas, this is how it is.

My Blogging Goals

My blogging goal for 2022 is to continue sharing our retirement lifestyle by posting at least twice per month. We will continue to write about our travels, our home search, aging and adapting to living with an aging parent, health, fitness and, everyday joys and simple pleasures. As always, there will be lots of photographs. Occasionally, you will find me at a linkup party or participating in a photo challenge. Those are great ways to meet new folks and if you haven’t joined in, you should think about it.

We will continue to strive to make your visit here enjoyable and our connection with you meaningful. Our intention is to grow our blog and our blog community naturally, without gimmicks. We are not a ‘follow for follow,’ ‘comment for comment’ kind of blog. If we visit your blog, follow and comment, it is because we value what you have to say. We understand if you don’t follow back. We are not everyone’s cup of tea.

I hope you guys will stick with us as we continue to share our satisfying retirement lifestyle. We have worked to build an entertaining and informative site, but we are always looking for ways to improve. We welcome constructive comments and suggestions. If you don’t want to leave those comments here, please use our ‘contact me’ page to email me. Seriously, nothing is ‘off limits’ there. Thanks again for being a part of our blogging journey.

What About You

Do you have big plans for your blog in 2022? How do you contribute to the blogging community?

60 thoughts on “Why I Love My InBox

  1. Great post (and thanks for the shout-out!). I set aside a couple of mornings before work to catch up on both blogging and reading the blogs I enjoy. Like you, I’m after lifestyle blogs and something that makes me smile or feel positive. I’m aiming for twice a week – one foodie, one not so foodie. I haven’t worked out yet, how that’s going to work, but…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. We certainly follow a lot of the same people! You’re right that writing and maintaining a blog involves a “certain ebb and flow” if you’re determined to keep blogging. I think, too, you have to allow yourself to evolve along the way so that you don’t get stuck. I feel like these last few pandemic years would have been lonely without my bloggy friends. As for my blogging goals for 2022… keep following my muse, keep sharing the comment love. Kind of simplistic, but there you go.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Ally, it has taken me six years to curate those 50 blogs on the sidebar. Some of them won’t be there next year, and others will make my highlight reel, but yes, we do have a lot of overlap. I think the common denominator is warmth and sincerity. I can see that ‘evolving’ is important to maintain interest here – both for the writer and the reader. Some folks have done that much more successfully than others, but at least they are trying. Thanks for adding your thoughts and best of luck with your ‘goals’ for ’22. Take care.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Funny you’d mention your blogroll, I’m putting together one in honor of my 11th year blog anniversary. Just wrote about it this week. Feel free to join in by leaving a comment on my post. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I totally get what you are saying and I think i spend as much time reading other people’s blogs as I do writing my posts. Of course it’s a thrill if you get lots of likes but if not then I still have the satisfaction of having written that post and seeing it on my screen.
    I too don’t like it when there’s no Gravatar and also the number of posts per day from the same blogger ..I think I will do the same as you and have a purge. I will always look at a new followers blog and if I’m interested will follow back. Half the time I get strange followers.
    One query I have is people who like my comments on other people’s posts but not any of my posts..is that weird or what?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Allison, I’m with you regarding checking out the blog of someone who ‘followed’ us. I typically go straight to the ‘About Me’ page and look for a name, location, and hints about what interests they might have. A weak About Me page along with not sharing at least a first name is a turn-off for me.

      I think that “being satisfied” with what you put out there is reason enough to carry on. If the day comes that I’m no longer having fun, I will know it’s time to hang it up. Thanks for dropping by and for sharing your thoughts. Blog On!!

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      1. I know how hard is it sometimes to find a name..I’ve resorted to asking and sometimes received a random comment about a nickname ..I really enjoy the interaction with everyone

        Liked by 1 person

    2. In response to your question, if I respond to someone’s comment on another person’s blog (like I’m doing here), and there is a link to that commenter’s blog, I always check it out. I’ve found some blogs I really like that way.

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  4. I started our blog as a travel blog when we embarked on our full-time RV adventure in 2013 as a way to keep in touch with friends and family. Little did I know that it would become such a wonderful means of meeting new friends! Over the years, our blog has evolved from simply a travel blog to become a ‘life journey’ blog, and my community of blogging friends has also expanded. As you said, the conversation and connection are important to me.

    Speaking of that, I just went back to check on your last post and don’t see my comment…I’m wondering if it ended up in your junk mail? I clearly remember commenting about how enormous this house feels after almost 8 years of living in our travel trailer, lol. I always enjoy your posts, your photography, and the variety of topics that you explore. I don’t see us in your sidebar but I’m honored that you included us in your blog post. Cheers to another year of blogging and blogging friends!

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    1. Hi Laurel, thanks for mentioning the comment you left. I have been meaning to email you about that. I received the notification in my email inbox, but when I tried to respond it would not let me, so I went to the blog to respond and it wasn’t there. I assume the WP Gremlins ate it. Sorry about that.

      I love that you describe your blog as a ‘life journey blog.’ I have been strongly considering changing the name of our blog to reflect that as well. Retirement life has become ‘just life’ these past few years.

      I think that only WP blogs appear on the sidebar. I used to be able to list ‘other blogs I follow’ on a separate sidebar, but I haven’t figured out how to do that with the new theme. So much to learn…

      P.S. I have to confess that I was literally in your front yard last week. We visited my brother near Tallahassee and he and his wife took us to Coastal in Eastpoint for lunch. Had we not been spending just two days with them, I would have looked you up. Next time for sure.

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      1. Suzanne, I know all about those WP gremlins! I always circle back around to read comments (the conversation and connection are some of the best parts of blogging!) but sometimes there’s a glitch that won’t allow me to click “like.” Although we have a WordPress site, it’s a .org site—which initially gave me a lot more freedom in creating the site, but has also created technological challenges way beyond my skill level!

        I hope you enjoyed your visit to Eastpoint. And I look forward to the time when we can meet in person. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi, Suzanne – Your discussion on why you blog and why you follow blogs deeply resonated with me. My passion for blogging has been difficult to explain (especially to non-bloggers). You captured the heart and soul of this brilliantly. I found myself nodding in agreement the entire way through. Thank you so much for the mention and for including me in your sidebar. I greatly appreciate both.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Donna, you are most welcome. I have been following your blog for a few years now, and I appreciate how you have evolved and embraced (and at times initiated) new challenges. Your ability to ‘connect’ in real-time is enviable and has served you well. I have given up on ‘explaining’ my passion for blogging to non-bloggers. Either you get it or you don’t. Take care and stay warm.

      Liked by 3 people

  6. Suzanne, what a helpful guide to how other bloggers meet your interests/make you curious. I appreciate the shout-out, even though my blogging was kind of light last year. I was undergoing surgery, chemo and radiation therapy and not moved to write about that. No travel either, so I responded to a few blog challenges to a least keep up my novice WordPress skills! I’m not sure if my website and gravatar are linked. I better study up! Since going into remission, my husband and I have moved from Texas to Washington State. So in 2022, I’ll be unpacking and most likely blogging a bit about our move. We are loving week 2 in our new home. Meanwhile, I’ll continue to enjoy your blog and others I follow, as well as check out some of those you mention here. Tracey

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    1. Tracey, I hope that your health trials are behind you now and that you will find renewed energy for blogging. I am very interested in what prompted your move from Texas to Washington and how that transition is going so I look forward to those posts. It is my pleasure to include you here and I am happy to see you popping up around the community. Take care.

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  7. You captured so many of my thoughts about blogging in this post, Suzanne. I can see we follow many of the same people and our reasons for selecting those blogs are similar. I need to do a purge like you want through… but I keep finding myself distracted with reading and commenting on posts 🙂 Thank you for the shout-out and for being such a bright spot in my inbox.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Janis, I very much appreciate the quality of your writing and the ‘new direction’ you are taking. Your short stories are heartwarming. Yes, it does seem that there is a common thread in the blogs so many of us have chosen. I have always looked for warmth and sincerity along with common interests, but knowledge and good writing keep me coming back. You are most welcome for the shout-out.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Sunday Stills: It’s a #Wild(Life) World – Second Wind Leisure Perspectives

  9. I think all of us have doubted the life of our blogs over the years, and you are so right about blogs failing after a year. Like you, I read those who inspire and not simply post daily (or more) to get readers (I did for three months when I first retired in early 2015 mainly to challenge myself). Blogging is an incredible community, Suzanne, and don’t forget the real-life relationships that have built over the years as we visit each other’s towns. To me, that is the best thing and I proudly tell people I have friends all over the world! This is a wonderful post and a good reminder of what’s important. I linked your post to my “wildlife” post today because we are a little wild aren’t we? LOL! Happy 2022 to you!

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    1. Terri, thank you so much for linking my post. Yes, we all do live a little on the wild side. People who are not bloggers simply don’t get what they are missing. I always use ‘I have friends all over the world’ as my ‘something you don’t know about me’ for an icebreaker. The responses are all over the map from ‘yeah right,’ to ‘wow, how cool.’ it’s the latter bunch that I’m interested in. Cheers to inspiring people to live imaginatively and courageously. Life is too short for anything less. All the best to you.

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  10. We sound very much alike. I blog as a hobby and only to share what I’m doing, hoping it might inspire others or at least entertain them. I don’t really have any goals for 2022, other than to post more often. My last two years have been tough and my blogging frequency definitely shows it. I’m trying to gain some momentum while we’re snowbirding in Florida and I hope I can maintain it. We’ll see. Real-life often gets in the way!! I enjoy following you and thank you for considering my blog as something worth following.

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    1. Hi Linda, I am happy to include you in my top 50 and love that you have a similar style as my own. You write about life, but with more panache, and you always make me feel like a welcome visitor. Thanks for that.

      I do hope you enjoy your time in Florida and will make it a longer stay next year. I am on the opposite side of the state, almost parallel to you, so we are currently experiencing similar weather, which btw is not typical of this time of year. Hopefully, it will get better soon. Enjoy living/vacationing in Florida.

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  11. Suzanne,
    A very thoughtfully crafted blog post and I share many of your thoughts about our shared endeavor. I have not yet thought about giving up blogging, but I probably didn’t know I would be in my sixth year either. Writing is my only creative outlet, but I am trying hard to learn to use a camera well, and blogging allows me to pursue both. The benefit of our blog is the pen “pals” we’ve made over the years. I look forward to hearing from them all. Thanks for including us in the sidebar, for the mention and the nice comments. Eagerly looking to following you and Malcolm again in 2022. Joe

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  12. Joe, I am hopeful that this will be the year we connect FTF. You guys live and write about a life that I can only imagine as RV travels are not likely in our future. I love that you are pursuing photography as a creative outlet – me too, as there is always something to learn. Thanks for sharing what you know as well as what you learn along the way. Life is truly a journey. Our very best to you and Helen.

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  13. Thank you Suzanne for writing and sharing this succinct post. I nodded in agreement as I read it (e.g. zest for life, positive outlook, joy of writing, blogging as a hobby, no gimmicks, etc.). I like how you curated your blog roll. My blog goals this year: 1) Continue writing about my explorations and discoveries 2) Continue hosting the weekly Weekend Coffee Share blog link-up 3) Keep blogging fun for me. Thank you for the mention and for including me in the sidebar. I look forward to reading your posts. Have a wonderful weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Natalie, I have enjoyed watching your blog and your presence here emerge and expand. You have done a wonderful job hosting the Weekend Coffee Share and I am happy to hear that you plan to continue with that. I also love that you have not abandoned your personal stories of life and exploration. Blogging should never feel like a chore or an obligation and I am happy that you still find it fun. Me too. Enjoy your weekend.

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  14. Hi Suzanne – thanks for including me in the list of positive bloggers you keep in touch with. Sometimes I feel like I’m a bit of a distant cousin to all the WP bloggers – but I love my free Blogger site and just can’t be bothered trying to find a way to shift nearly 1,000 posts across. I do have a WP gravitar that (hopefully) links to my blog and I love that we can all interact together (regardless of our platform). I know what you mean about following and unfollowing – I struggle to keep up with people who post multiple times a week, and I miss those that have moved on. It’s a changing landscape and I just do my best to float around and connect where I can – I’ve met so many interesting people and I’ll always be beyond grateful for all blogging has taught me – the positivity is the highlight for me.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Leanne, positivity is a big draw for being here. I do enjoy the connections I have made and consider most folks to be ‘friends.’ When bloggers post several times per week, I tend to choose one post to read and ignore the others. That way, the blogger will know that I am interested, but I am not likely to read every word they write. Topic is still my #1 consideration.

      I don’t blame you for not wanting to convert over to WP. Your blog is perfect, as it is! I am going to set aside some time this week to figure out how to display ‘Other blogs’ of interest on my sidebar, in an effort to showcase the non-WP blogs I love. Wish me luck!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Hi Suzanne – maybe you can link from the gravatar? A lot of non-WP bloggers have them (like non-Blogger bloggers have the Blogger one)? Good luck – there’s always something to keep the brain cells firing!

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  15. The Widow Badass

    Hi Suzanne,

    Thank you for the shout out and the wonderful post that captures what a lot of us love and get out of blogging. I used to have a blogroll many many moons ago and somehow during a housekeeping update (or more probably when my blog changed names or platforms) it went away and I forgot about it. If I can find room on my sidebar, I might put one up again, inspired by you.

    I am also a huge fan of the Like button, and if I haven’t circled back to hit Like on anybody’s reply to my comments it’s because something truly weird has happened (and please forgive me!). Like you, I do this to show that I’ve read your response. I also like blog posts that offer a Like button. I may not always have something to add to the conversation but I want to show the blogger that I was there and read the post. I wish more bloggers would use it – almost everyone I follow does, so that is wonderful.

    Thanks again!

    Deb

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Deb, I do my best to leave a comment on every post I read, but when I arrive late to the party and everything meaningful has been said, I will not hesitate to hit the like button and move on. Sometimes I ditto someone else’s comment, just to let the blogger know I actually read what they wrote, as opposed to a ‘drive by’. And, like you, unless something truly weird has happened, I will circle back and ‘like’ the blogger’s comment back to me. If I appreciate that kind of affirmation, I’m sure others do too.

      I always enjoy your sense of humor and writing style. Your personality shines through your posts. It is not surprising that you and Donna found each other IRL. Congratulations on the success of ‘What’s on Your Plate.’ I still don’t have the schedule down on everything I’d like to participate in but will jump in when I can. Thanks for stopping by and take care.

      Liked by 2 people

  16. Dear Suzanne, Your kind, thoughtful, heartfelt post says more about you than any one of us.❤️ Your generosity, friendship and wisdom leap from the pages of your blog. Your stunning photos and love for your family shine a light onto our planet and into our lives. I plan to ‘visit’ some of the other ‘friends’ you share in this post, old and new to me. I definitely read your inspirational, entertaining and informative posts. Thank you for including me in your post. I do not plan to disappear into the sunset. I plan to continue my blog 😊

    As you know, I have had to “press pause” on blogging these past months because of unexpected, private family challenges so I can be emotionally and physically present. I also have many blessings and positives. You are definitely one of these blessings, Suzanne ❤️ We will stay connected. Thank you for being you. You always make a difference.❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Erica, you’ve made my day with your exceedingly generous comment. It is good to know that you are not disappearing into the sunset! That would be a great loss to all. Thank you for reading and commenting and for just being you. If your positivity and ability to encourage could be bottled, I’d happily hand it out on every street corner! Take care of yourself.

      Liked by 1 person

  17. I enjoyed this reflective post, Suzanne, and feel all of us go through these considerations one time or another – or multiple times. Congratulations with your sixth blogiversary!! And thank you so much for the mention and for not purging Roaming About. 🙂

    I always read the responses of the hosts after leaving a comment (that’s why I check the box to receive all comments in my inbox), but not always do I see the option to “like” this answer from my inbox. I think yours is straightforward. A lot depends on the WordPress theme used.

    Sometimes, I’d have to go back to the original blog to find the like button there, after I receive just the reply in my inbox. Other times, I actually have to refresh the post I left a comment on to see if the author has responded yet. This is cumbersome and if there’s no answer after a week of refreshing the page in my browser, I move on.

    When I have to go to the post again, to read the reply, I often skip this step, especially if I’m short on time or need to pay for data (like here in Mexico) as opposed to having unlimited data. Sorry, long explanation for why I sometimes don’t “like” a reply…

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    1. Hi Liesbet, I am glad you took the time to explain that. It was too much information to include in my original post, but I knew someone would lay it out here, in the comments. Thanks for being that one. Everything you stated is exactly why it isn’t a deal-breaker for me. There are so many reasons associated with the choice. It’s the habitual and possibly deliberate ‘offender’ who gets me ticked.

      Roaming About will always have a spot in my top twenty! Hope all is well with you.

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  18. Great to read your thoughts of the ‘behind the scenes of the world of blogging, Susanne. You give plenty of good reasons why you follow blogs and why you also unfollow them. In my experience, many bloggers don’t like mentioning or talking about unfollowing blogs. It’s a subject they shy away from.

    Good luck with your blogging journey, and thank you for the mention and link.

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    1. Hi Hugh, you are most deserving of the mention as you have provided many helpful ‘how to’ posts regarding WP and blogging in general on your excellent blog.

      I have always put my thoughts out there as honestly and thoughtfully as possible, and with the intention of being helpful. Purging is just another element of blogging. Maybe if we talked about it more, it would be less necessary.

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  19. Oh dear. I’m terrified that I don’t have my avatar linked to my blog… as I have no idea what that actually means, how to do it, if I did it. Sometimes my lack of computer-savvy is frightening even to me.

    I’ve never done a blogger-review housekeeping to delete folks who are no longer active. I probably will do one – it’s a good idea. Especially as I’m going to explore a few folks you follow that I’ve not linked into before. 🙂

    I met up this week with another blogger who is snow-birding right near us. She just hit her 4 year anniversary and I mentioned the 80% don’t last a year, when we were talking about folks no longer blogging. I don’t know where that stat was, but it made an impression on me.

    I think we blog for the same reasons. Inspiration, support, community. It’s nice to have all three.

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  20. Great post with lots of food for thought. Firstly though, thank you for including me in the list of bloggers you enjoy and for the nice words about my posts – much appreciated 😀

    I share some of your views on who to follow and who not. I do occasionally purge if my list is getting a bit long, or drop someone if I find myself regular passing by their posts without getting engaged. And I get frustrated with anyone who doesn’t take the trouble to acknowledge a comment I’ve left – ideally with a reply but at the very least with a ‘like’. And if they do reply I try to respond with a like so they know I’ve seen it. I enjoy the conversational aspect of blogging so comments and reactions matter 🙂

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    1. Sarah, I am happy to have included your blog in my post. You are a gifted photographer and writer and I always enjoy what you have to share. As far as I am concerned, the ‘conversation’ starts in the comment section. The post is just the prompt. Without the back and forth exchange, we might as well keep our blogs private. I don’t have any idea how many blogs constitute ‘too many,’ but I keep my list under 60. Even so, I still don’t get around to each of them on a regular basis. Thanks for the visit and have a great week.

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  21. Ha,ha, you must have met Julie from Retired Introvert. I have been reading about her ‘snow bird’ experience and wondered if you two would get together. Pat, whatever you are doing is working. I can click your blog icon on my sidebar and it will go straight to your blog. Purging keeps the inbox filled with posts I want to read, so why crowd those (and risk missing them) with things I no longer have an interest in? At least, that’s how I see it. I’m glad you are part of my community and I look forward to hearing more about your transition to Florida life, and anything else on your mind. My friends all say the first year is the hardest. It’s 52 and sunny on our side of the state today – could it be the beginning of an upward trend? Let’s hope so.

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  22. Perfect timing for this post as we start 2022. The isolation of the pandemic was a heavy load that was truly lightened by the blogging community. I make coffee when I wake up, and sit down to read blog posts. It is way more interesting that watching the news and much more positive. 🙂 Thanks for including me. I started out in 2012 posting about three times a week. That came to a close when I picked up responsibility for creating and maintaining our Master Gardener blog. By the time I do two posts there a week, I’m okay with one on my own, and since staying closer to home some weeks I just don’t have much to say, and I don’t want to bore folks. There are some bloggers I really enjoy, but they are up to almost daily posts, and I just can’t keep up. My solution is to visit them periodically and hope that is enough. It still amazes me how I can pick up new things, admire good photography, or just smile as I read a blog. You have a lot of material to draw from with your recent move, checking real estate options, what you are learning about selling and buying, and learning to live with an aging parent. I never appreciated that what I was seeing in my mother and my in-laws would some day roll around to me. Life certainly is a journey and a circle. Hope your 2022 journey is a good one.

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    1. Judy, we do have a lot going on right now and I feel like I am treading water some days. Our living arrangement has certainly been an eye-opener and I am glad we have had this experience, but I’m kinda done!

      You could never be boring, as you have so many hobbies that you are really good at. I love hearing about the things that bring you joy. Yes, let’s hope the journey into 2022 is a good one! All the best.

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  23. What a lovely post Suzanne and a wonderful way to acknowledge other bloggers. I find the blogging community very generous. At times it can be difficult to keep up with comments and responding to them in a timely manner but I always make sure I do. I find that blogging keeps me sane especially during our very difficult year last year, and the friendship from bloggers has been so appreciated. xx

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  24. I can relate to so much of what you have talked about here Suzanne and your approach mirrors mine quite a bit. I do need to do a purge though, it’s long overdue. What made me smile was you calling us the ‘cool kids’ 🙂 thanks so much!
    I have always thought of my blogging community as pen pals too!

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  25. Christie Hawkes

    Thank you, Suzanne, for sharing this insight on why you blog and how you interact. I love blogging for much the same reasons you stated–the opportunity to write and connect. And thank you for the shout-out. What you said about acknowledging responses to comments left on your blog makes sense. I will do better about that. I know I love it when I see an actual back-and-forth discussion…whether it’s on my blog or one I’m reading.

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  26. Hah! Great post. I often try to like posts, but nothing usually happens when l do. I also seem to keep forgetting my password setup for WP and have to constantly change them on so many devices :-). I also think your site hates me. Lately, I have had to copy and paste again my replies as they don’t stick. I also notice that my replies lately don’t get a reply from you. They somehow appear in the middle somewhere and it just gets skipped. I know it’s not intentional. I do read the posts though :-).
    My reasons for having the blog change from time to time. It started as a hobby, but now… I want to earn my hosting fees, so l have ads now. Between the blog, podcast, videos…the fees are getting high. I have to watch ads for practically every news outlet, blog, etc…so…why not me? :-).

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    1. Hi Kem, for what it’s worth, you are not the only victim (ask Laurel) and I do appreciate the trouble you go through to leave a comment for me. I always use names when I reply to comments because they don’t necessarily land where they are supposed to. Ugh! I don’t mind blogs with ads when the content is as good as yours. I have Pinned several of your travel posts for future reference. Thanks for joining the conversation. I appreciate what you have to say. Be well!

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  27. What a great post and I can’t believe I found it in my spam file along with 7 other legitimate bloggers.To top it off, I’m having problems with WordPress and leaving comments with some of my blogging friends. Nothing works right now except for my iPhone. Thank you so much for mentioning me, that was very kind. Your posts are always so enjoyable and you have a great group of blogging friends that I like hopping over to visit. I’ve been blogging for almost 11 years and it has been so rewarding to share my recipes and travel experiences with the wonderful blogging community. Yes, I too have friends around the world and they have always provided so much inspiration.

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