The Expressive Leap: Blogging and the Personal Essay

Janet Steen examines the question “Have Personal Essays Gotten Too Personal?” in a quest to determine what is the truth and beauty of the personal essay.  In her article she points out the shift of the personal essay has transformed with the evolution of blogging.   Steen states “Blogs were an inevitable stage, and a useful one, but often they were narcissistic and ranty and you, the reader, had to sift through. A list of gripes does not necessarily make an essay, but a well-crafted, meaningful list of gripes might.”

winter wonderland

It is these well meaningful list of gripes that many of us sift through to discover the blogs that are gems and acknowledge that there is a truth to their writing. It provides meaning and sustenance in our daily lives.

One of the many diamonds  in the rough contribute each day whether it is a ranty post about poor customer service,  an inspirational post about a walk in the park, the political manifesto that your never thought of,  or a humourous look at motherhood.  All of these have helped to shape and transform our world and bring people one step closer together within the global community.

Janet Steen  points out “A great essay takes some little leap out of the ordinary, it has alchemy to it, it has magic.” It’s when you discover that hidden gem which makes blogging more interesting and exciting!  It is underneath that gem which holds a truth of what is beautiful and imperfectly human.

I have seen and read comments on occasion that suggest every Tom, Dick, and Harry seem to have a blog these days. It maybe true but the rubbish usually fades into the sunset while many bloggers seek to find their own truth through the words of their own blogs. They seek out to be better, to express themselves with eloquence, and shine on their own page.

Seth Godin, points out in his  short novel The Dip “The people who are the best in the world specialize at getting really good at the questions they don’t know.”  So perhaps as many bloggers throw in the towel there are many bloggers out there attempting to be the best by expanding their growth as writers and taking the time to seek out the truth.

It is by pushing ourselves to the limits that we create new expressive thoughts in personal essays.  As the world evolves, technology pushes us too new limits, our thoughts, and dialog will change. It is our role as bloggers to break the rules and seek the limits of discovering the truth through our own creative work. It is up to us to determine what is good and thumb our nose at the rigid critics who are unwilling to change with the times.

Do you attempt to take a leap out of the ordinary with your blogging?

A Penny for Your Quirk

We all strive to be perfect in some shape and form in our lives. It might be from the small to the big details in life that we create certain expectations for ourselves.  But what happens when the people in our lives do not live up to our own expectations.   What happens when we being to judge our neighbors cookie eating habits? Or our best friends messy kitchen? Or maybe our Mother’s flare for wearing neon pink with a tiara?

The going gets weird

It is at those times perfect gets in the way of seeing the people we are meant to see in real life. We all have our quirk and foibles. Some of us chose to hide them and others strut their quirks with pride. It is those quirks which can be delightful eccentricities that we can grow to love in our friends and family.

At the same time the person who masks those quirks has the ability to judge the rest of us for making steps forward to be who we want to be as we try to accept who we are in the path to happiness.

It is as a friend and I sat over coffee we stumbled into a conversation.

“Why do you think she tries to be so perfect?”

“I don’t know.”

“It must be exhausting trying to keep up with the Jones?”

“Did you ever think it might be exhausting just to be you?”

“What is that suppose to mean?”

“You are judging her for trying to be perfect while you try not to care what people think who judge you?”

“So?”

“Well which path to happiness is better?”

“I don’t know. But both paths seem exhausting.”

We all try to be the best we can be  in our own little world. Some of us just try to be good, others try to look perfect, and the rest just thumb their nose at us. All I know is at the end of the day I would rather be quirky than perfect. I really believe it is too much work to dress to please and have everyone like me.

What is your favorite quirk? How do you flaunt it?

The Attack of the Fat Sucker

As I leisurely strolled down the Costco aisle I discovered Maiden Form Fat Free Dressing Tank Top for the low price of 19.99!  I was immediately hooked and grabbed a medium!   It the cheaper version of Spanx with the promise of hiding my muffin tops that appealed to my vanity.

The next morning I decided it was time to breakout this wonderful new purchase and try it on to see if it really was fat free!

I slid it over my shoulders with ease but somehow it got tangled just before hitting my well endowed chest.

It was stuck!

I stood there trying to wiggle my arms out and fell over on top of the bed. It felt as if this fat sucker was strangling me! I couldn’t breathe and had to get it off!

In the midst of my panic “Scissors! Where are the scissors?”

I couldn’t find them!

I wondered was I doomed to be in the Newspapers the next morning “Woman strangled by Fat Sucker!”

Oh! The humility!

I calmed myself took a deep breath and tried to wiggle out again. I wiggled, hummed, hawed, stretched, jumped, and rolled!

It was amen to the heavens above! I somehow managed to break free from the fat suckers clutches!

I then held the evil contraption in my hand and looked down at the size!

“God damn it! I bought a small!”

The moral of the story is if your vanity feels the call of the fat sucker make sure to buy the right size or it could have you in its horrible clutches of doom.

Have you ever been attacked by an article of clothing?

Dermagist: A Review

Several weeks ago I was contacted by Dermagist to do a review of their  Complete Rejuvenation System that promises ” to help wrinkles, reduce the appearance of pores, and lessen the visibility of redness and discoloration.” It is the promise of youthful appearance in a bottle that I have been waiting for my whole adult life!

I couldn’t possibly resist to turn down such an offer especially with my rummy noise and weathered skin. So when the package arrived I tore it apart with glee! I have been using this product for over three weeks and thought I would share the pros and cons to this Complete Rejuvenation System with you.

I am enjoying the benefits of this product and my favorite thing is I no longer have a rummy nose!  It’s saving me oodles in concealer! But the price for this system is steep at the cost of $129.99.  So it’s up to you as the consumer to decide how deep you are willing to dig into your wallet!

I’m fairly frugal when comes to spending money on beauty products. How about you?

The Fragrant Ritual of Comfort

Hair it is a part of who we are and our identity. It aggravates us, comforts us, and sometimes shields us from the elements. It is after one of those days  I look forward to is stepping into a steamy shower and washing my hair.

The few minutes in the shower is my own time to clear my thoughts, relax my muscles, and wash away the negativity of  the day. I look forward to lathering the shampoo into my hair and inhaling the fragrant scent  that wraps its blanket around me with comfort.

I then wait letting the conditioner repair and untangle the wavy mess that is my hair. It is by untangling the mess with ease which  gives me a small sense of control in the tornado that has swept through my day.

It is in that silent moment I stretch and breath trying to regain a minute of clarity. As the moment passes I slowly rinse with my thoughts running forward thinking tomorrow will be a much better day.

I know in the next wild moments of life when my hair is blowing in the wind and there is no answers that I will get a  fragrant scent that sweeps across my face.  It is that scent that comforts me and lets me know it will all be okay.

Do you have a small step in your daily routine to help shift the perspective of your day?

Mag the Egg Talks Body Image

Mag is doing me a great favor! She is taking a break from fun on the beach in St.Marteen to discuss body image. I know we are breaking some rules in her contract agreement about pay and blog space-time. But she felt it was important to talk about how hard you ladies have been on yourself this spring!

However, her recent on and off again relationship with Roggy Stewart is off-limits…

Me: Thank you for taking the time from your beautiful vacation to talk  with me! I love your choice in egg-suit selection. It looks mermilicious!

Mag:  Thank you darling!  It’s Vegasace!  Doneggalla made it just for me!  You know when you called so frustrated about all of these women complaining about their soft rolls and jiggly thighs. I knew I had to say something!

Me:  So what do you say to these beautiful ladies that are so hard on themselves?

Mag: I say smarten the heck up! I’m an egg I would kill to have arms to swim with and legs to run. Just imagine my status in carton-wood. But instead I work with what I got! I have big hair and luscious lips! I have an expiration date so I have to work everything I got!

Me: I love that you point out we have an expiration date! So how do we work it?

Mag: The best way to work it is hold that chin-up, shoulders back, and strut it. The best looks come from confidence! We all expire at  one point so why don’t  enjoy what we have!

Me: But what if they say that doesn’t matter! I still have fifty pounds to lose? Or to me who is currently over her BMI?

Mag: Are you exercising? Are you smiling? Are  you enjoying good food? If you focus on your goals the weight will come off. But have fun doing it!

Me: What do you mean?

Mag:  The next time you are exercising instead of focusing  on how your thighs jiggle while you run! Don’t even get me started on that… Focus on your breath, how good it feels, how strong your heart is, and your perspective about yourself will change.

Me: Thank you Mag! I really appreciate the time you made to talk with me!

Mag: Not a problem!  Margarita?

Me: Of course! Now off record what is going on with you and Roggy?

Will you take Mag’s Advice? What positive advice would you like to add to the conversation?

Take a Walk with Me

Every year a change occurs as the White Witch casts a spell with her glassy fingers.The snow begins to fall and transforms the land into a winter wonderland. It is in this  place that the White Witch reminds us of the beauty of her powers.

Just before the spring thaw we took a walk into Maligne Canyon. It is here the motion of  glacier water has stopped frozen in  time. It is held in the present waiting to burst forth in the spring!

The further you walk into the canyon the  ice does a delicate dance across the light. It leaves you awestruck with the sheer power of the White Witch’s ability to stop a moment in time.

As you peek behind the ice wall, a  light shines through ,and a quiet Hallelujah echoes from the cave!

As we step back out and peer up  we realize that there is so much more that  it is  greater than you or me! It is each winter the White Witch gives us this beauty and reminds us to find bliss in the present  moment!

As we walk away from the suspended beauty  the biggest reward is the welcoming of the warm spring sun.  The mountains look over us wise in the knowledge that they were here before us and will be here after us.  It is days like this that I am thankful for all of  grandeur and chaos of  life realizing every moment counts!

Thank you for joining me on this scenic journey! It is always a pleasure to spend time with you!

Do you have one place where  you love to walk? Does it leave you feeling refreshed and inspired?

A Springtime Wish

As the snow begins to melt and the sun begins to shine several thoughts run across my mind. One is the inevitable ten pounds from winter hibernation and begin to focus on all of the things I hate about me. I am guilty about making jokes about my muffin-tops, dingle dangles, and wobbly bites all of the things I wish I could airbrush away.

I listen to my friends do the same as the spring air hits, all on a diet, all trying to be fit, before we put on the first tank top of the season.

But what if we didn’t set such a high standard for ourselves? Think of the negative energy we focus on putting ourselves down when we could be using it to lift our spirits up.

What do you love about you? Is it the cool glass of water that makes your skin glow? Is it your strong arms open and ready to offer a tender embrace? Is it your laughter after a game of tag with the kids? It is the little things we need to cherish and love!

My springtime wish for you and me is to love ourselves a little more! It’s time we let our confidence blossom from within letting our beautiful hearts shine out this spring.

Lets start today! What is one thing that you love about you? And how does it make you feel?