Spotlight: Daily Plate of Crazy

There are two things I love equally about blogging– my blog and your blogs. With that in mind, once a week I’ll be devoting some space to one of the blogs I read. Prepare yourselves to be introduced to the gazillion facets of my personality because the scope of the blogs I read is vast, wide, and assorted like a jumbo box of chocolates.

This week’s blog: Daily Plate of Crazy

I’ve seen many blogs attempt daily posting. They almost always fail miserably or they generate some pretty silly posts that are just all-around weak or over time they become increasingly repetitive (like where I feel GRS is lately). This is not a problem over at Daily Plate of Crazy who manages to generate quality posts every single day. I’m totally jealous. But more than that, I’m totally grateful.

Her subjects are varied: dating, single motherhood, empty nest, midlife womanhood, gender issues, raising teenagers, self-esteem, and on and on. But the essays are all well-written and carefully thought out. She often elaborates or provides commentary on interesting news pieces. And sometimes, she just lets her emotions take the lead– frustration, loneliness, confusion, humor, whatever. Nothing seems off-limits– even her own doubt on whether writing daily accomplishes anything, affects anything, makes a difference.

It’s refreshing to read her writing because it flies in the face of so many other blogs (not all, of course)– the vocabulary is eloquent, the essays are long but concise, and she does a great job of pointing a reader to other very intelligent and worthwhile reading as well.

Have you discovered Daily Plate of Crazy? Do you try and write daily?

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Spotlight: 101 Books

There are two things I love equally about blogging– my blog and your blogs. With that in mind, once a week I’ll be devoting some space to one of the blogs I read. Prepare yourselves to be introduced to the gazillion facets of my personality because the scope of the blogs I read is vast, wide, and assorted like a jumbo box of chocolates.

This week’s blog: 101 Books

There is a special place in my heart for books and the people who are involved with them one way or another. And it’s because of that special place in my heart, which I wish everyone on earth shared, that I take a special pleasure when I see a new post from Robert at 101 Books pop into my WordPress Reader.

The core of Robert’s blog is Time Magazines list of the 100 Greatest Novels (since 1923). The book that puts the 1 in 101 would be James Joyce’s Ulysses which was published in 1922 effectively disqualifying it from Time’s list. Robert has dedicated himself to reading every single one of these books. Don’t worry, he’s not crazy enough to try and do it in one year.

Because Robert is not forcing himself to tear through this list at breakneck speed, it gives him time, I think, to really contemplate each book. Yes, he always gives a final review on the book when he’s done, but Robert also peppers his blog with updates as he progresses through each one. He often will let his readers choose his next book and because of that we have gotten to force him to get Are You There God? It’s Me Margaret out of the way. This, it should be said, prompted a couple of posts on clever ways one may potentially hide a book one is reading in public.

And it’s posts like these that set Robert apart from just another checklist type of blog. There have been discussions on movie tie-ins, book cover art, the nuances of specific words, insane Google searches (that got way creepier after he read AYTGIMM), reading methods, and other such things. And the best part is, Robert’s got a great community of commentators. I’ve gotten more than one chuckle reading other readers’ comments or have found myself wildly nodding in agreement.

Robert’s blog is the kind of blog that made you wish blogs were actual physical places you could visit. It’s comfortable and welcoming and filled with nerdy people like me who aren’t total snobs about it (most of the time).

Have you already discovered Robert? Are there any blogs you read that aren’t necessarily associated with the core of your content?

Spotlight: Perils of divorced Pauline

There are two things I love equally about blogging– my blog and your blogs. With that in mind, once a week I’ll be devoting some space to one of the blogs I read. Prepare yourselves to be introduced to the gazillion facets of my personality because the scope of the blogs I read is vast, wide, and assorted like a jumbo box of chocolates.

This week’s blog: Perils of divorced Pauline

I didn’t intend to share another single mom blog right away, but Pauline’s story has recently gotten even more interesting with a visit to a wilderness camp her son has been sent to in an effort to correct his behavioral problems. I always think good writing is good writing regardless of the topic and this is definitely well-written material.

Pauline had a vicious divorce that recently culminated in the loss of custody of one of her children. There is a lot going on in her story– nasty divorce, horrific co-parenting situations (I don’t even think what they do is called co-parenting, maybe co-torture?), and behavioral problems.

Her writing is intelligent and carefully thought out. She also has a feature called Blogger Space that features the different places people write from.

Spotlight: The Pepperrific Life

There are two things I love equally about blogging– my blog and your blogs. With that in mind, once a week I’ll be devoting some space to one of the blogs I read. Prepare yourselves to be introduced to the gazillion facets of my personality because the scope of the blogs I read is vast, wide, and assorted like a jumbo box of chocolates.

This week’s blog: The Pepperrific Life

The Pepperrific Life is a blog written by a single mom with a daughter. She covers topics related to that  lifestyle including– general parenting adventures, motherhood and its horrors wonders, dating and love as a single mom, discipline, co-parenting, and managing a work life with a parenting life among many other things.

Pepper and I often have “rhyming events” and you can often find us on each other’s blogs saying things like “me too” and “I am also dealing with this” and so on and so forth. She also has a wonderful community and her comments’ section is often lively and active because of it. I enjoy reading her blog and hope you do too.

Have you already discovered Pepper? Do you have a great blog you’d think I’d like to read? Do you like finding out about blogs this way or do you prefer stumbling upon them in other ways?

The 7 Links Project

{7-365} Seventy times Seven
“Seventy times Seven” by Dee’lite on Flickr

Sandy at First Gen American tagged me in a really interesting meme called The 7 Links Project. Here’s the little blurb about it:

This project got started by Katie from Trip Base.  The purpose of it is to get the blogger to reflect upon some posts (aka dig up posts from the past) so they can see the light of day again.  Then the blogger is to nominate 5 other bloggers to participate. 

I’ve never really done any sort of review or examination of my content and considering I’ve been posting on here for almost two years, there’s a lot of it (219 published posts including this one). It’s been pretty interesting going down Blog Memory Lane. I hope you enjoy this little retrospective and do take the time to visit the ones I nominate.

Most Beautiful Post

I have a hard time assigning these types of adjectives to my own writing but judging from the comments, and the fact I get teary-eyed if I read it on a PMS day, I’d have to say Dear Daughter probably gets the title of Most Beautiful Post. My kids are, undeniably, my most beautiful creations, so it’s not surprising that a post directed at one of them got some of my most heartfelt writing.

Most Controversial Post

I am not at all controversial. And if I write something controversial, my readers are apparently extremely polite and follow the classic advice, “If you don’t have anything nice to say, then don’t say anything at all.” Either that, or the whole world totally agrees our American politicians are a bunch of bullies as I outlined in Politicians as Playground Bullies. Really, that post would be about as close as I get to stirring up the pot. I don’t like picking fights. At all.

Most Helpful Post

I say it time and time and time again, but one of the most fascinating aspects of this blog has been the emergence of this amazing, intelligent, supportive readership. And so although I don’t actually put forward any advice, my post The Struggle of Doubt gave others a place to identify and share. The comments on that post are wonderful, encouraging, and super helpful to anyone going through the trials of co-parenting.

Post Whose Success Surprised You

The post whose success surprised me and encouraged me is Mutant Supermodel and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. It is one of the few posts that I put a lot of planning and preparation into and it paid off. It was fun to make people smile and gave me a chance to laugh at myself.

Post You Feel Didn’t Get the Attention It Deserved

It’s the first post I put up here and originally I had shared it on a local mom’s website where it actually was quite popular. They even included a link to it in the local newspaper’s daily email. But, my post Cool Female Characters- Where are you? never really made it out of the local scene. This is actually the post that encouraged me to take blogging to an independent level.

Post You Are Most Proud Of

This one’s pretty easy for me to choose but might be sort of surprising to read about. I’m most proud of Words of Gratitude for two reasons– Obviously, because it highlighted what is one of the most important events of my life but also because I know that it’s hearing from readers that pushes me every time I sit down to write and the right thing is to express gratitude to those who lift you up. So, even though it’s a very simple and almost silly post, I’m most proud of it because I mean every word of it and am glad to even have the opportunity to write something like that.

The Next Five

Here are the five blogs I’d like to see condense and categorize their content in this way:

  1. Big Little Wolf’s Daily Plate of Crazy: She is an amazingly talented and intelligent writer. I’d love to see the posts she’d choose for these as she is endlessly inspiring.
  2. We May be Poor But We Are Happy: I think Judy underestimates how much readers appreciate her sharing with the world. I think she’d benefit from taking another look at her content in this way and I know readers would enjoy the best of her writing because of how helpful and sensible it is.
  3. Raising Peanut: Andrea has been through so much for so long, I think it’d be healing to look through her content and see how far she’s come. And for readers, this would be an amazing reading experience.
  4. Molly On Money: I love Molly. She is entertaining, inspiring, and fun to read. I’d love to see a round-up of her content in case I missed something awesome.
  5. Grumpy Rumblings of the Untenured: I know they’re totally famous rock stars in the blogosphere (or so people say) but I’m tagging them anyways, mostly because I’m curious about which of their posts really is the most controversial and I’d like to see how they group the rest of their content. Not to mention, I imagine #1 and #2 duking it out over what to link and what not to link and that amuses me greatly.

Linksplosion

It’s been one of those weeks where it’s been hard to put together many thoughts and most of my good ones have been going towards work-related things. So I’m going to throw links at you. Some of them are old. Some of them are new. But all of them are things I’ve been reading.

Most of you know how I feel about princesses. So it’s likely not a surprise how much I love Dina Goldstein’s Fallen Princesses series.

This Washington Post article about how the rich are pulling away from the rest of America in ridiculous gaps is the type of thing that drives me wild given the current debacle in Washington and a certain party clinging desperately to tax breaks for these greedy bastards.

On a happier and geekier note, Slate has discovered how wonderful Ravelry is and what makes it the wonder child of social networking sites. If you knit or crochet, it’s the place to be!

The New York Times talks about how being divorced is just so uncool with all of the rich folks. A lot of people blogged about this. I wanted to but couldn’t put the pieces together. Something about this piece just drives me nuts. Mostly that someone is so concerned with how her former rich friends think of her as a failure because she ditched her loser husband. Maybe.

I have a love hate relationship with fashion. Simply put, I love fashion but I hate the images fashion puts forward as “ideal”. And I hate that we eat it up. I also hate when they do ridiculous half-hearted attempts to embrace different physiques. So, when Vogue Italia came out with this absolutely mind-blowing, breathtakingly stunning photo spread celebrating curvy women I freaked out in a great way. This spread proves that curvy women are not just nice, they’re damn right desirable. Not one matchstick waif could look half as delicious as these women. The fashion world needs to move more in this direction. It works. The Italians proved it.

The blog at How Stuff Works did a tiny little post on the history of delivery rooms and dads. Personally? I hate them in there. I’m a believer in boundaries to certain degrees. This is one I’m all for.

Just when I gave up on gardens, I saw this TED talk by Jonathan Drori on the beautiful tricks of flowers. I love how evil and scheming they are and am totally committed to surrounding myself with the tricky boogers. By the way, if you’re looking to captivate a lover, these flowers might school you.

Ben Venom creates amazing Heavy Metal themed quilts. You think maybe things like Slayer and cotton batting can’t co-exist but they do. In a seriously amazing awe-inducing way.

I dream about this chicken recipe. Why I don’t actually do something about it and make it is beyond me.

Science vs. Homophobia. Genius.

In the latest wave of evidence women are superior to men (hee, hee) a study has found that articles written by women get shared online more than men.

You know the Debt Ceiling debacle (the most recent example of our moronic government representatives)? This Op piece at CNN points out one of the main issues I have with everything going on.

It being birthday season, summer, at my house I very much appreciated Donna Freedman’s recent MSN Money article on all of the freebies you can get for being born!

LZ Granderson is currently my favorite columnist. The post on why he’s raising his son as a nerd is the one that won me over. But since then, he’s been putting out lots of great stuff.

As a matter of fact, after reading this column of his on bratty kids and the parents who permit them, I wonder what he’d have to say about this (stupid) article on things you should never say to your child. Because I found the nine forbidden things to be completely unrealistic. And the reasons given for not saying them just smacked of overly protective and sensitive parents. Toughen the hell up.

I just realized I don’t have any blog posts linked to. Which sucks because there’s lots of good blog stuff out there. I’m just not in the habit of bookmarking it yet. Will try harder!

 

Friday Link Frenzy

I’m all over the place today. Don’t say I didn’t warn you!

  • Do you Tumble? I opened it a long time ago, abandoned it, and have resurrected it because I kept finding cool stuff online and felt bad swamping my Facebook peeps with links galore. It seems I’ve gotten the hang of it this time and am having much fun playing around with it so please do kill some valuable time and join me!
  • You know how things just stick in your head? This piece called “How to steal like an artist (and 9 other things nobody told me)” is way stuck. I even printed it.
  • Thanks to NicoleandMaggie this version of “Friday” is also stuck in my head in a stubborn way but hey at least today it’s appropriate. I actually have watched it every day since they posted it.
  • I wish I had found this article when I’d first separated. “Help friends help you through divorce” is actually chock full of advice I wish I could’ve passed along so if you’re going through a separation or divorce, I strongly suggest you take a look and email it to your friends and family. You won’t have to say a word, trust me.
  • I loved this op-ed on the potential government shut down. The last sentence nailed it on the head, “Here’s the real reason that professional politicians should do whatever they can to avoid a shutdown: After a few days of living without government, many Americans might just decide they don’t really miss it and could live with a lot less of it.”
  • I absolutely loved this collection of Springtime music for book nerds.
  • Speaking of book nerds, talk about books as art!
  • My favorite post of the week at Get Rich Slowly was April’s post on the research done on Buying Happiness. I also loved the comments. People are just plain adamant about the preciousness of Stuff. I’m just not buying it. I’m not saying Experiences are the end all be all but they seem to be the things that stick most stubbornly to my heart and mind no matter what people say.
  • Speaking of buying happiness: Sharon’s a bit bummed about where all of her money’s gone lately. I’d actually written a HUGE response to her outlining all kinds of ideas and suggestions and positive encouragement but Blogger ate it (cuss you Blogger). So instead, I ask all of you visit her and make up for my loss at Blogger’s hands. Basically: I think she should focus on the positive and the things she can do more often and more cheaply as ways to “live more” and she should feel just fine going ahead and taking a percentage of income for living more. But I’m sure you all have better things to say.
  • Did you see? Single Mom, Rich Mom wrote a post all for ME! It turns out though, it is probably one of the best most inspiring posts I’ve read in the PF world. After reading her story, I feel very inspired, very blessed, and very satisfied with life where it is right now. I think her story is super important because these successful PF stories are way too often heavy on the DINK (Dual Income No Kids) side and short on everything else.
  • Thanks to Twinkie-Chan, I want a Candy Coated Knuckle Duster.
  • I finished reading Your Money: The Missing Manual. I have to say, I really thought this was going to be a yawner for me full of stuff I didn’t need to read because I’ve heard it all before. I was wrong. I actually want to own it. If you have tried searching GRS before, and get all mad because it’s just WAY too much stuff to go through, get this book. It’s incredibly handy. You can read my full review on Goodreads. Oh and yeah that means I’ve read 24 books or 40% of my challenge to read 60 this year. And I’m almost done with PostSecret: Confessions on Life, Death, and God.

So, I didn’t think this would be a link love fest but it looks like that’s what my blog wanted so there you have it! I’ll be helping my friend do last-minute taxes tonight, doing some mystery shops and store audits (rockin’ that extra income baby) tomorrow, and cooking bacon pancakes for some friends on Sunday. What are you doing?

P.S. I’d like to put together a collection of links of side jobs for moms– single or otherwise. I actually have a few I want to put up for sure and they all happen to be fantastic artists. So, if you’ve got a side job, or your job is your sole income, either blog about your business and its story and email me the link to your post or email me the story and a link to your site. Even if your products or services aren’t something that can be purchased on the web, I’d still like to feature it. It doesn’t matter how big or small it is or what it is (even another blog!). I’m just curious about what everyone else out there does to pull in some money and I want to support other females because we rock.