Real like the Velveteen Rabbit?

Does a blog that people will read and follow actually exist?  Can I create one, too?

I have a lot of online friends… both in the blogging world and on various chat sites.  The latter perhaps may be a shock to some of my blogging friends and perhaps to some of my “real” friends.  I put “real” in quotes because I believe all friends are real… regardless of whether you’ve ever met them or even ever spoken with them in “real” life (aka ‘in person’).  But in this instance (mentioning “real” friends), I am referring to the friends I actually have met in person.  Confused? Good!  So am I!  ha!

I’m throwing this out there to see what people will think.  I love to write.  I’ve been told by several people that I’m a good writer.  (I could devote a whole blog JUST to that.  No, not a whole blogpost but a whole blog!  In other words, a blog about what a good writer is, does, thinks, etc.)  I would LOVE to be able to write “for profit.”  And no, I’m not interested in being a millionaire or even a thousandaire (if there was such a thing).  But, I am passionate about writing and wish that it indeed could be my sole income source.  Alas, I’m currently “just” a day care teacher.  I have nothing against being a day care teacher, per se.  I just know that it doesn’t stretch or even use all of my intelligence, and therefore, my brain is still telling me, “There’s got to be more!”  (I could devote a whole blog just to how a day care teacher could possibly expand his/her ‘ideals’ simply by studying the children he/she cares for. (I keep caveating in my head about this.  Even ending that sentence with a preposition is something I could caveat about.  Ugh!  There I go again!))

So what’s my point?  I want to write.  I want to be paid to write even if that means that I’m being paid by companies/businesses that would advertise on my blog.  I think my blog should have a creative name beyond Anita’s Antics, though, because my life is certainly about more than just my antics.  I’m considering making it an anonymous blog because I know that I’ll (most likely) be more willing to write about things that some of the people who REALLY know me would consider VERY shocking. And, I’ll probably have a bigger following if I’m able to write about those things because those things even shock me!

If you (the reader of this post) have ANY ideas about what I might call a blog like that, please let me know.  Also, if there’s a topic you’d like me to blog, please let me know.  I’d be willing to blog about just about anything.  No, not “just about”… I will (if given the proper ‘stage’) write about anything.

Oh, and by the way, this is me.  Or at least a picture of what I looked like this past Sunday.  I may never be this “real” again. 😉

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Brandfluential is looking for new bloggers!

If you’re a new blogger looking to spread the word about your blog or just wanting to try something new and different, check out Brandfluential.  I’m giving them a try.  I’ve been on their email subscription for a long time, but I’ve never really taken much time to find out more about them.

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Check them out, and let me know what you think!

Friends are Forever

I’m nearly in tears thinking about my sweet online friendships that have developed and are still developing even as I type.  Here are just a few of the friends I’ve made in the five years that I’ve been blogging…  (in random order, unless I ever get the urge, umption, gumption, and time to organize them I have them alphabetized by first names and categorized… sort of.)

Okay, there are a few (a very few) whom I’ve met IRL (in real life, for those of us still learning our anagrams).  (Most of these, I met at the Bloggers’ Picnic.)  They are:

(There are a few others whom I met at the picnic, but these are the ones whose blogs I frequented most.)

Here are some of the blogger-friends I “met” primarily because we were homeschooling…

The ones shown in light blue (above), I still keep up with fairly regularly.

Blogger-friends I’ve “met” along the way and since we stopped homeschooling…

Thank you, friends! 🙂

This blog entry was inspired (mainly) by Shannon’s post, “P & G Thank You Moms.”  I have no affiliation with P & G except that I do use some of their products.  I was given no compensation for this post except the “warm fuzzy” feelings of friendship!
Graphics in this post are courtesy of Cute Colors.  Please do not snag them, hyperlink to them, or in any other way claim them as your own.

Please vote for me!!!

I’m a participant in the Bloggers & Tiaras Pageant at MomDot.  Will you please vote for me in the People’s Choice Awards category?  I’d REALLY appreciate it!!  And, I’d even try & come by your blog (if you have one) and leave you a comment or 20!  🙂 😉  (Of course, I need a comment here so that I know you voted!)

What is beauty?

Beauty cannot be defined with one simple definition.  Indeed, I would venture to say that no two dictionaries define it in the same way.  In my quest to define “Mom beauty” for the Bloggers & Tiaras Mission #1, I’ve come up with so many different approaches and ideas that one could not possibly share them all in a decade, let alone 10 minutes or even 10 hours.

The original question/mission, as per Mom Dot, is as follows…

What is beauty exactly?

We want to see you define what you believe “Mom beauty” really is.

including a link to what you find beautiful about you

The first “quest” is to tell you, my readers and the judges, what beauty really is.  In my opinion, beauty encompasses the whole person.  Whether or not a person has beautiful skin, hair, eyes, legs, or any other body part(s) is really beside the point.  If a person looks like a model on the cover of a magazine like Vogue, that person may be beautiful to behold; but what is that person really like when you get to know him/her?  What kind of personality does he/she have?  How does that person treat others?  How does that person treat himself/herself?  In other words, does that person possess inner beauty as well as external beauty?  You may be thinking, “You still haven’t defined ‘beauty’, Anita.”  Well, that’s part of my point.  Beauty is not something on which I can put my finger, nor can any other person do so.

Webster’s 1828 dictionary actually calls on Scripture to help define the term.  And, to me, that makes beauty even more complex.  Yet, a search for the word beauty in an English language Bible provides a vast array of usages.  For example, in 2 Samuel 1:19, it speaks of the beauty of Israel; and in Psalm 27:4, reference is made to the beauty of the Lord.  And, that’s “just” two instances in which beauty is used.

Again, I feel as though we are back to square one… what exactly is beauty?  Even though we are talking about beauty in human beings, I think this excerpt taken from Webster’s 1828 dictionary best describes my feelings about beauty…

Beauty is intrinsic, and perceived by the eye at first view, or relative, to perceive which [sic] the aid of the understanding and reflection is requisite. Thus, the beauty of a machine is not perceived, till we understand its uses, and adaptation to its purpose.

In the same way, I think we can perceive beauty in people.  If we do not know a person’s motives for dressing a certain way or for acting a certain way, how can we truly know if that person is displaying what we call “beauty”?  We must first understand and reflect upon a person’s whole being… from the way one appears to the way one behaves and interacts with others.  Some might venture to say that one’s integrity has a lot to do with one’s beauty.  If a person of integrity walks into a room, are we not automatically drawn to him/her?

Secondly, I believe “Mom beauty” is very similar in nature to “regular” beauty, if you will.  Beauty as described in my first segment is defined by looking at one’s character and whole being.  Mom beauty encompasses the whole mother.  The way a mother walks, talks, dresses, and interacts with others (particularly her children) will indicate the level of beauty she has.

And finally, what do I find beautiful about myself?  Wow!  That’s a tough one!  As a wife and mother who has struggled with a low self-image for many years, I find it difficult to “highlight” my good points… whether internal or external.  However, I will do my best to present myself as I believe others see me.

I’m nearly 5’3″ tall… so close, in fact, that my driver’s license indicates that is my height.  So, I’m a far “cry” from the 6′ model mentioned in the Bloggers & Tiaras Mission #1 post.  For some people, being petite is an attractive and therefore beautiful thing.  I have dark brown hair and large, brown eyes.  Again, that’s a “far piece” from the blond-haired, blue-eyed “beauties” in Vogue.  However, if you noticed, I said “large, brown eyes.”  For some, this is seen as a thing of beauty.  Throughout my life, I can recall many people commenting, “What beautiful, big, brown eyes she has!”  The song, Brown Eyed Girl made popular by Van Morrison in the 1960’s indicates that someone was once in love with a brown eyed girl… implying that she was beautiful because of her brown eyes (either that, or because she was loved by the one who wrote the song! 🙂 )  That’s enough about my physical appearance, although I’ve also been told I have a beautiful smile.  😉

As for inner beauty, the Bible says…

…The LORD does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7)

and

…I am fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14)

That being said, I am beautiful because God made me.  Just like that old T-shirt or saying: “I know I’m somebody ’cause God don’t make no junk,” I’m special in His eyes.  And, ultimately, that’s all that really matters.

Scripture courtesy of BibleGateway.

Bloggers and Tiaras

If you haven’t heard of MomDot, then you need to click on the circular button below.  Warning!  She can sometimes be a little (how shall I put this?) crass.   I’m just saying…  🙂  (Love ya, Trisha!)

Mom Blogs at MomDot

Well, she’s hosting this awesome thing called Bloggers and Tiaras.  It’s a Pageant for those of us (ahem!) who may not have the prettiest faces, but we’re doggone GREAT bloggers (at least, we think we are)!

(Click on the Tiara button below to learn more.)

tiaras

Well, in order to be a part of this Pageant, I have a few questions I have to answer.  Also, I’m supposed to post a picture of myself.  So, I chose this one because it shows off my winning smile (not to mention my niece Sarah who was one month old when the picture was taken).  Anywho, without further ado… on to the interrogation questioning!

BTW, you can click on my picture to see a MUCH bigger version of it.

1) Name, BlogName, Twitter

My name is Anita.  My blog’s name is  Anita’s Antics.  (I also have a homeschool blog named God is Good!)  My username on Twitter is HSB Suzanne.

2) Have you ever entered a pageant before?

I’ve entered a pageant of sorts.  I was a Freshman in college, and I entered to be Freshman Queen.  My friends all told me it was rigged and that one of the senior staff’s daughters won because… well, she was a daughter of someone on staff!  (There were no runners-up, and I wasn’t the daughter of anyone on staff.)

3) Do you have any special talents we can look forward to?

I can twiddle my thumbs!  🙂  Seriously though, I like to think I’m a fairly good singer… even though I could never dream of being as good as Amy Grant or Mariah Carey or…

4) Name your top 5 favorite sites to visit on the net..no, you do not get brownie points for putting momdot.

No brownie points for putting momdot?!  Aw, come on!  😉 It’s hard to pick my favorite top five.  Let me get back to you on this one.

Okay, my top five favorite sites to visit on the net are…

  1. Twitter
  2. Google
  3. YouTube
  4. The Homeschool Lounge
  5. Gmail

5) What is your favorite thing to do when you are not blogging?

My favorite thing to do when I’m not blogging is to tweet on Twitter!!!

6) What’s your dream vacation?

My absolute dream vacation, or my dream vacation where I get to really “vacate”?  Oh! Sorry, I wasn’t supposed to answer a question with a question, was I?  Oops!  There I go again!  My dream vacation would include a beach, mountains, snow, sun, warm weather, Switzerland, and my beau!  🙂

7) What blogger do you look up the most to?

Gee!  Another tough one!  And, you didn’t say anything about the brownie points on this one.  Sooo…  seriously, I look up to Marsha of Other Such Happenings and to Heather of Sprittibee.  I would have a very difficult time choosing between the two.

8 ) If you could be on the cover of any magazine, which would you choose and why?

If I could be on the cover of any magazine, I would choose HomeLife magazine put out by LifeWay because I like their principles, values, and articles.

9) Tell the truth…you want a tiara, don’t you?

I’d love a tiara!  I wore a small one in my wedding… the same that my mother wore in hers, so I had to give it back to her.  LOL!

10) What is your definition of blogger success?

My definition of blogger success is a blogger who puts forth his/her best effort to appeal to an audience but who doesn’t compromise his/her beliefs and yet still has people who leave comments… comments with meaning.

To those who may think this is all silliness, you’re probably right.  We’re just trying to have fun!