So how does one go about starting a blog? I used to have one that was intended to be like an online journal/news site for my friends and family. Except that, as with the beautiful journal that sits by my bedside, I was very sporadic with my entries. It always felt like a huge chore to keep updated. I finally quit the blog and resorted to using Facebook status updates to communicate with my loved ones.

I think one major obstacle was that I felt the urge to include information about the gaps (and they were large gaps) in the story before moving on to the more recent news. The solution: Blog about ideas instead of trying to keep everyone updated on my life.  Topics for this blog are not intended just for my nearest and dearest. I hope they all read it, but I also want to generate discussion with people I don’t see or talk to frequently. The blog entries are also not intended to be a play-by-play of my life. Yes, they will be about something I’m dealing with, or trying to understand, or find interesting, but you won’t find historical updates here unless it’s necessary to do so in order to make a point about the topic. If you’re lost or want more personal details, ask questions.

Inspiration for my new blogging project came from a friend and prior colleague who also loved to write and had just never taken the step to do it for a wider audience. She’s an interesting person who does crazy, amazing things, so her blog posts are often hugely entertaining. I feel like I’ve become a less interesting person since becoming a stay-at-home Mom, mostly because my world got a whole lot smaller in a very short period of time. Part of the reason I decided to start blogging is to stretch my intellectual muscles and find interesting things to talk about that have nothing to do with diapers, play dates, or baby food.

My second motivation for blogging is the discipline of writing. If I’m just journaling for myself, I have no accountability to anyone. In this case, I told a whole room full of people (including my best friend) at a New Year’s Eve party that one of my resolutions was to do some blogging. They challenged me to make the goal SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time specific – you may be familiar with other interpretations of this acronym, but the spirit is the same). And so, I committed to writing weekly and posting something to my blog at least once a month. Next year when we’re all recalled for the 2011 party, we’re expected to report – whether the resolution worked for us and why/why not. I intend to be able to report favorably on all three of my resolutions (more about the other two later).

The third reason is simply that I love to write. I cherish the process of choosing just the right words to precisely convey an idea. I am passionate about editing and ensuring that my grammar and spelling are correct. Like every other writer, I have an insecurity or two – is what I have to say even remotely interesting to anyone else? I hope so. But more importantly, I am writing for myself. So much of my life is given to my husband and daughter, both of whom I adore intensely. But I don’t spend enough time doing things for myself. So I will write.

I think it will take a concerted effort not to write 600+ words for every blog post. I apologize in advance (and in perpetuity) for getting a little long-winded. Read it all if you want, or take it in smaller chunks. Please comment, but try to be nice or at least constructive (yes, feedback is welcome). And if you feel like writing too, just do it.