As the new year begins, I look into the future and make what I will call "Year-Long Aspirations of Good Intentions." Jasia, a traditionalists, has referred to them as New Year's Resolutions, Footnote.com might prefer a more professional designation such as annual goals, but call it what you will, it's always nice to strive for improvement as we step into 2009.
Last year I refused to engage in what has always been for me, the resolution farce. You know; clean, organize, lose weight. It always ends in bitter disappointment, defeat, and weight gain.
This year I have been struggling with nostalgia. The nostalgia fire was stoked by Becky Wiseman's post, A Salute to the Old Timers!, and ended with email correspondence between Jasia and myself. Could I be an Old Timer, surely not.
I now write several blogs. It was feeling like several too many so I was contemplating closing down footnoteMaven and moving my blogging life to Shades. I would retain my nom-de-blog, but no more footnoteMaven the blog.
I discussed this with Jasia, a good friend and the engine behind all the GeneaBlogger machinery. She reminded me that footnoteMaven was where my personality resided, where I wrote, where I really interacted with my blogging friends. Shades was the professional me. She gave me a great deal to think about and Becky's post brought back some wonderful memories.
Becky pointed to my first post, Shelter From The Home and Hearth, which was also my first contribution to the Carnival of Genealogy. I was so new, my hand shook as I hit the blog submission button. I had been reading these famous bloggers for months in the certain knowledge that I was not worthy. Now I was about to prove that to the world.
I had joined the 19th Carnival with my blogging idols, Randy Seaver - Genea-Musings, Jasia - Creative Gene (the reason I started blogging), Miriam Midkiff - AnceStories, Becky Wiseman - kinexxions, Craig Manson - Geneablogie, Apple - Apple's Tree, David Bowles - Writing the Westward Sagas, Tim Abbott - Walking the Berkshires, and Chris Dunham - The Genealogue (Chris actually mentioned me in a post once and left a comment on my blog, that Chris. I was so excited!).
These were the Old Guard and I was jumping into the deep end of their blogging pool. They were kind, generous, and welcoming. Encouraged, I wrote more posts and more Carnival submissions. Then, miracle of miracles, I received my first comment. A comment for another Carnival submission, Only Woman-Built Boat On Long Island. Here is that memorable comment and my response:
Apple holds a special place in my blogging heart for being the first to comment on an article I had written. You have no idea how excited I was, then again, perhaps you do.
A very interesting story. Your comment that she evaded her family for most of her life is very intriguing. I hope you'll share more about her in the future as you learn more.
The footnoteMaven said...
The stories of Lois Green have not always been kind. They are the type of family lore that you must be certain of before you plant your ancestral foot in your mouth.
I admire each and every one of these wonderful people and am still very close to those who encouraged me from my first post. People have often asked why I create a Carnival of Genealogy poster twice a month when the Carnival is Jasia's and not mine. It's really quite simple. I owe my blogging life to the Carnival and Jasia. It is my homage to her for my online start. I will be forever grateful.
Along the way I added many new friends and I have enjoyed their research, writing, and wicked sense of humor. This past year also saw the advent of Facebook and a flood of new Geneabloggers. I hope in some small measure I have encouraged this new crop of GeneaBloggers as I was encouraged. Today, it is so difficult for a new blog to stand out, to get the recognition it deserves with the number of blogs in competition for our viewing. I offer one suggestion - Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.
And with that I get back to the point of this post, my "Year-Long Aspirations of Good Intentions."
1. footnoteMaven will remain. I love writing this blog. It is my beginning and my roots. fM needs a face lift and more articles in the areas I enjoy - writing, sources, citations, humor, family history, and friendship. More of those in the coming year. And yes, I need to put a few more blocks on the quilt.
2. I hate, detest, loathe and dispise my blog reader. Sure you get a quick read, but how I miss the trips to the actual blogs. The redecorating and all the little widgets that show a blogger's personality. More trips to the actual blogs, less blog reader in the new year.
3. More new blogs. No, not ones I'll create, those you've created. More trips to the blogs of new GeneaBloggers. There are so many gems out there.
4. This last year I haven't commented nearly as much as I would have liked. I lay some of the blame with those infernal blog readers. More comments! There are some fantastic blogs out there and I intend to tell them so more often.
5. I once responded to all the comments my articles received. I haven't done enough of that recently. If someone takes the time to stop on any of my blogs and leave a comment I intend to respond. I miss the interaction. More responses in the new year.
6. I am working on that database of photographers to help date our family photographs and would like to have it online in the coming year. It's one of those projects that will never be finished, like our own family history. Shades will be putting out a call during the year for assistance from my readers. I want that database to become a reality.
7. My first love is researching old photos and there will be much more in 2009. Back to the detective work.
8. Oh, those women wearing glasses. The collection grows and I am refining the database that holds them all together. This year I will talk more about the work.
9. I have spent a monumental amount of money on new technology (ask Mr. Maven). Now all I have to do is master that technology. I will spend more time learning the ropes of my hardware and software this new year, in the fervent hope all that technology will make for quality and efficiency.
the things that made me happiest. The reason I became a GeneaBlogger.
10. Step away from the computer! Yes, there is life beyond the keyboard and I'm going out to get some.
Meet me here next year! Same GeneaTime, same GeneaBlog, same GeneaDiscussion. Let's see how my "Year-Long Aspirations of Good Intentions" worked out.