I started an email newsletter I sent out weekly called the Ford Crier in the mid 90's, shortly after Monika was born. It's irregularity turned into a yearly Christmas letter for my family and friends. By 1999 I started posting a monthly web-page that was very blog-like. Those old HTML pages I was able to archive in this blog site. I started blogging "for real" on Monday, April 18, 2005 for a few friends, but for mostly my mom. I used Angelfire, where my homepage and website are still hosted, but is fairly out of date. My old Angelfire blog is now deleted but those posts are all transferred to this one.
In May 2007 a company from the UK asked me to blog for them and that is how I found typepad. To get to that blog sight you needed a password, so I was very open about the stuff I shared there. I wrote entries from May through August for GFK but the site has since been removed before I was able to copy all of the entries (everything from June and July '07 is gone). The posts that were transferred over to this site were edited since they would be available to the public. I have had to learn to edit myself more and more as my blog has become known to my students and colleagues.
I love blogging. Honestly, I'm still blogging primarily for my mother although now my adult children are starting to read it as well occasionally, sometimes just to correct my typos. I know a few friends and past students read my blog regularly. I find the blogging process creative; it is like painting or taking pictures. I am trying to make an impression with my words, working diligently to be concise. I'm learning how to write, understanding that what isn’t said is as important as what is said. My hope is to write a book, but in the meantime I'm blogging. Words are a lot like other visual media, you can make them look and feel pretty or you can just toss it across a page like vomit and it's still kind of interesting-- or kind of gross.
As of August 2015, the 7 most popular posts in past 7 years have been:
- With Great Sadness 2/12/14-- about the passing of Bruce Dahmen
- Pull 'em Up 10/25/11-- about sagging pants
- When Bad News Gets Worse 4/28/15- about my mom's cancer
- Celebrate Life 2/16/14 -- about Bruce's life service
- A Fallen Hero 12/3/13-- about a teacher's death
- The Four Temperaments 1/01/2011- my take on the temperaments
- I-Day, part 2 6/27/13-- about Jessi's Induction Day at USNA
Other than family and close friends, I often wonder who is reading my blog and why. My brother told my mom once that he doesn't read it because he really doesn't care what my dog is up to. I've had students tell me they love it, maybe it assures them I'm just a normal person. I know alumni like to be able to see what's going at the high school. When I look at Google Analytics and see what pages are getting the most hits, it's the not so normal days. The day someone dies, I post a strong opinion, go to the dentist or travel somewhere. On February 12, 2014, I had the most hits ever to my blog-- about 2,250 page views-- that was was the day my principal died. The reality is I average about 50 hits per day. To be honest, the fact that people keep reading, keeps me writing.