Sunday, April 7, 2013

Sunday Salon: Vacation and rumination

 Good morning from a gorgeous morning in Key Largo.  My family and I have spent the last three days down here for spring break, trying to make the most of a shortened vacation due to my daughter's commitments to her track team.  (Grumble)  Unfortunately one day was filled with torrential rains and wind, but we still managed to do some snorkeling, hiking, kayaking, a visit to a wild bird rehabilitation sanctuary, and A LOT of seafood consumption.  This place is exploding with fresh (like...hours fresh) seafood at every restaurant.  How could a person only eat seafood for three days and gain weight?  I don't know but I've done it.  I'll be dragging my sorry ass back to Andre on Monday morning. 



















I have used this intermission in life to do some serious ruminating about my priorities and blogging.  Things are changing, I think we can all agree.  The blogging world is not what it was when I started almost five years ago.  I'm doing some cost/benefit calculations on time spent writing, reviewing, commenting and such.  Is it worth the payback?  The demands on my time in real life are growing exponentially, and that is where I need to focus right now.  

I don't think I'm ready to walk away, but I'm going to be scaling back significantly and permanently.  It is the only way I can stay sane.  It isn't something you will notice immediately, but starting in a few weeks there will be fewer posts.  The Not So Wordless Wednesday is going to disappear, and probably the weekly movie discussion.  I'll review a couple of books a week, but probably not everything I read will make it to the blog.  I'll try this plan on for size and see how it works.  

So other than this deep thinking, what have I been up to?  I've been reading The Wind Up Bird Chronicle, that is what I've been doing!  Talk about one weird reading experience, but I have to say that I love this book.  I will join the multitudes that can't quite figure out how on earth to review the thing.  Could we call it an existential acid trip?  I'll decide later.  Just know that it is worth the effort to read...at least so far.  I've finished Book One and Two, and will probably dig deeply into Three on the 4.5 hour ride home today.

On audio, I've been listening to Rob Lowe's biography (narrated by the man himself) and have been thoroughly entertained.  Dude is a huge name-dropper, but with good reason.  He was in the right place at the right time, almost his entire life.  Talk about someone meant to be an actor!  I'm hoping I can at least start Wendy Wax's new book "While We Were Watching Downton Abbey" on audio before I see her next weekend at the UCF Book Festival.

Today we will enjoy a few more hours of this gorgeous paradise before we head home back to a heavy dose of reality.  I won't go into detail about the week I have coming up, but suffice it to say that I need all the positive thoughts you can send me.  I will save that fun for next Sunday!


22 comments:

Julie P. said...

Send some positive thoughts my way too. Very busy week and husband is in Chicago!

rhapsodyinbooks said...

As you know, I'm right with you about the blogging and the huge time suck it is! Loved being with you vicariously in Key Largo - looks gorgeous!

Jenny said...

I just stopped in to comment on some blogs and I totally hear you. Clearly, I haven't been around for a while... it was only partly a conscious decision... There is just so much else going on to focus on and I was feeling too much pressure to read. And blog! Lol.

bermudaonion said...

I get where you're coming from - we just can't do it all! Isn't Rob Lowe a wonderful narrator? Can I say I'm jealous that you can read in the car?

Mary (Bookfan) said...

Sending positive thoughts.
My baby was in college when I started my blog so I always marvel at the bloggers with young families who can juggle life, reading AND blogging. Not sure I'd have been up to it so I understand your need to streamline things. I hope it works for you.
I was so pleasantly surprised by Rob Lowe's biography. Glad I listened to it because he was an excellent narrator.

Marie said...

I don't blame you. I've been scaling back too. No, the blogging world is not the same anymore. Now that I'm more or less settled into being a bookseller, I feel like I spend all my book energy at the store and don't have as much for online anymore. I do two reviews in a "good" week and often only one. And that much is an effort! I hope you stick around enough to keep in touch because I like you a lot, but I understand!

Heather @ Book Addiction said...

I TOTALLY get it. As you've probably noticed, I'm lucky if I get two reviews up a week and forget about anything else. Life is crazy. Blogging has changed. Our priorities have to change. I'm good to keep going but I'm not stressing about the lack of posting/commenting I am doing these days - it's all good.

I'm glad to hear you had a great time in the keys! Good luck with your tough week! There's light at the end of the tunnel though, Saturday = fun! ;)

Elisabeth said...

I completely understand, but will miss reading your blog everyday!

JoAnn said...

I'm glad you're not closing up altogether! Things have changed, lives get more complicated, and we have to adapt. Hope your new plan gives you the balance you need. I think many of us are experimenting with a scaled back blogging model these days.

Iris said...

I'm sending you positive thoughts from over here Sandy. I hope the good trip will at least ease some of the upcoming week's reality.

I completely understand about the blogging. It's difficult this weighing of time, costs and benefits. I think it's probably best if we all allow ourselves some room and accept that we can't be fulltime bloggers all the time. I am glad to hear you will still be around though.

Anita said...

Your short getaway sounds awesome. Each blogger must decide what is best for them. I started almost 5 years ago as blogger who wrote about family and topics near to my heart, added books and now it's almost all books. I can't review more than 2-3 books a week, I can barely read more than that either. My life has changed a lot and I do appreciate the flexibility I create on my own. I hope you'll enjoy the changes and that they will be good for you.
Looking forward to next,weekend!!!

Jackie Bailey said...

I've been doing the same thinking about blogging. I can't walk away either, but things are getting a lot sparser on my blog too. I recommend combining reviews into posts so you don't have to write long reviews for books that don't have much to talk about. Also don't bother to write reviews for everything. I hope you decide to stick around, even if it is to a lesser extent.

Jenners said...

That first photo is lovely!

And I have to say, I've not regretted my decision to scale back my own blogging one bit. Once you give yourself the permission to scale back and just write a few posts and give up trying to comment everywhere, it is amazingly freeing. I applaud you and wish you well. It was one of the best decisions I made for myself, and I feel my life is much more balanced.

Tasha B. said...

Wow, Key Largo! I'm totes jealous.

Carrie K. said...

Glad you got a little time away! I hate that spring break is over tonight. :(

I know what you mean about the blogging thing - I think after taking the summer mostly off, I will come back with plan similar to yours - with some personal posts thrown in.

Melissa said...

It's so hard to keep up with blogging! And even if you cut back on full reviews I hope you check and let us know what you are reading. I count on you for audio recommendations! :)

Kerry Ann @Vinobaby's Voice said...

Your pics are gorgeous. They are making me excited about my family's trip to the Keys this summer.

I understand where you are with the time constraints of blogging. Our priorities and obligations shift. And as you said, the blogging world has changed dramatically. I've been scaling way back also. If only we had twice as many hours in a day...

Ti said...

Of course, I can relate to what you are feeling. Blogging takes a ton of time. I've never posted more than three times a week so for me, it's still doable and not too much of a chore. Actually, I enjoy it 90% of the time. I do a lot of it before work as I get here so early most days. It works for me. But this past week, I didn't write anything new and I can't say I missed it. It was nice to read Wind-Up and not have to take a bunch of notes. I am just reading it and what sticks, sticks. How to review it? It will be a gut-reaction type of review. How it made me feel, etc.

Literary Feline said...

I go through phases--mostly just wishful thinking--of what I'd like my blog to be. I'm starting to add more trivial personal stuff. Nothing too serious or thought worthy, but I am having fun with it. I've been posting about two or three posts a week for awhile now and prefer that pace. I'm lucky to get one book review up a week. We just have to do what works best for us and what fits best in our lives, right?

I enjoy your blog and the time I get to spend with you. So, no matter what, I'll be hanging around. :-)

Alice Teh said...

I'm with you! That is why these days you see me spending less time blogging or social networking but engaging more with myself and people through travel, etc. But I'm glad to still have all of you as friends in the blog world.

I love that bird pic!

stacybuckeye said...

Every time I think of closing up shop I just try to find a way to tweak it so I can continue blogging. I hope that you can do that, Sandy!
I loved Lowe's biography. His narration totally made the book for me. Well, that, and I loved all the name dropping.
I choose books for our sitter and I asked her if she wanted to try this biography and there was a blank look on her face. Incredulous, I asked if she knew who he was. She did not. I'm not sure I ever felt quite so old.

Kathleen said...

I've been blogging for about the same amount of time as you and I know just what you mean. I have other things I want to write about and also other things to focus on. I've never given my blog the focus it really deserves and just when I think I will quit it all together, I keep going. I'll be happy to see your posts as often as you feel like posting them. I always enjoy reading your blog!