Unexplained Mysteries of My Universe (Part 2): Blog Anniversary

  • Explain to me how is it possible that when I was 11, I was earning money babysitting, while my son at the same age can’t figure out how to make toast?Slide1
  • Explain to me how when you’re walking on the side of the road, every car that whizzes past you is a jackass, yet when you’re the one driving the car, the walker is the jackass?
  • Explain to me how this made it past the marketing team? And who agreed to have truth serum that morning for breakfast?Cereal
  • Explain to me how in the hell it’s possible this blog is 3 years old today?

Blogging is a strange thing; bloggers often feel like their blog is their ‘baby’, while nonbloggers peer into the crib, fake a smile and sneer, “Gee, that’s some ugly baby. And don’t ask me to change any diapers.”

Slide1

This blog started out as a vulnerable, needy newborn, which did nothing but cry and sleep. In the beginning, I posted maybe once a month. For my two followers. I was still trying to figure out the big, out-of-focus WordPress world, feeling my way out of the crib, leaving more than a few stinky poopy posts in my wake.

Well, certainly not the post about me. And where's my %#@$ing Sanka?
Well, Jeezum Crow! Certainly not the post about ME. And where’s my %#@$ing Sanka?

Even though I was scared, that first year I kept reaching out, taking chances, posting more. I talked to myself in a language only I understood. Eventually,  I whined and cried a bit less and my babbling attracted a few people to my crib who wanted to play with me after all.

Mommy and Daddy WordPress showed me off to the relatives and they saw potential in me I didn’t know existed. Who knows why, really.

Slide1

Then came the terrible twos.

I had tantrums. My posts got crankier. I started to do things for attention. Hey, look at me! Look what I can do! I did vlogs– I read bad poetry to you.  I twirled batons. I sang. I played piano.
I slurped coffeeLookee!  Lookee at MEEEE!

On second thought...you might want to look away.
On second thought…you might want to look away.

I loved the responses, the fact so many of you wanted to hang out with me. You didn’t even mind I still had a binkie and wore big kid pull-ups.

Sure, sometimes this post-cranking bidnezz was all too much, so I had my trusty companion,
Mr. Skittles, take over the job. I think he did very well.

You can guess which posts were his.

Slide1

Today I turn three.  And nothing’s changed. The threes are just as awful as the terrible twos, if not more so — didn’t anyone tell you that?

So I will do more of the same, it seems to be working so far.

It’s hard to not sound sappy or trite when writing in a blog, but I’ll just be straight-up honest with you guys:

I couldn’t have done it without all of you.

[cue soft piano music]

If you’re a blogger, you know that every single comment, every like is important to you. It’s like having your mom and dad clap for you when you take those first wobbly steps.

It gives a blogger confidence, validation and most of all, encouragement to keep going. In spite of the fact your entire family, all your friends and even your mailman thinks your blog is lame and a colossal waste of time.

But you keep on blogging.

[cue somber violin]

You blog to finally find your voice and to keep using it even when you have doubts or feel scared.

[music swells, dramatic pause]

Especially when that voice is flapping on and on about farts or pretzel feet or broken asses.

Thank you.

Thank you all (especially you, Mr. Skittles) for making these three years so memorable.

I love you.*

Cheers to another year. Happy blogging.

*Well, not really. But I do think of you fondly from time to time.

_____________________________________________________________

Unexplained Mysteries of My Universe (Part 1)

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156 thoughts on “Unexplained Mysteries of My Universe (Part 2): Blog Anniversary

  1. That face gets me every time! When it popped up on my phone I spit kashi twigs all over the screen.

    Congrats on three years! You’re practically a grown up in WordPress years!

    1. I have never been compared to Madonna before, thanks, Renee. Should I run out and buy a torpedo bra now?

      It does seem like we’ve been following each other forever. In blog years, one year equals ten.

    1. He swears to me he doesn’t do freelance, but I have my suspicions. Bribe him with some bologna sandwiches and I have a feeling he’d take over your blog.

      Sooooo good to see you again, Katy. Hope you’re feeling good.

  2. happy Anniversary! As an only 6 month old blogger baby, it’s nice to hear the chronology of what’s to come! thanks for doing what you do!

  3. Yay!!! I am so glad that I came across “She’s a Maineiac”. It’s a daily read for me now.

    Blogging for 3 years ain’t an easy thing to do. I can attest to that fact as my 3rd Blog Anniversary is less than two months away.

    While you thank us, the readers, we in turn thank you! You keep us coming back for more. And more. It is also a fact that many of US owe YOU a big ol’ “thanks” for supporting US.

    Congrats….3 years is quite an accomplishment.

    1. Wow, another blogger coming up on their 3rd anniversary! From what I’ve read about blogging, that’s a rare thing to stick it out this long. Congrats to you as well.

      Thanks for your kind words, it really made me smile today.

  4. Truth serum! That indeed is what our food industry needs! And our 10-yr-olds…

    Brilliant post as usual. Three years has been very good for you, Darla. it seems like yesterday you took hold of my hand and led me to the sandbox for the first time, you even told me not to worry about my pull-up, to just take the damn thing off. Just like a big sis. I mean, if you can’t poo in the sandox, what gives?

    You are an amazing talent, a super human, and no doubt one of the best moms in the world. Keep up what you’re doing. And thank you for your leadership!

    1. Yes, I consider one of my big accomplishments convincing you to ditch the diaper, Shan. You make me proud.

      Thanks for the comments and always being so supportive to me all this time. Funny how being the best mom is my ultimate goal, even more than being a ‘super human’. I guess both are the same. Typical for a mom to feel that way, huh? Hope you’re enjoying your summer.

      1. Indeed, Lady! Happy summering to you. Mine’s good so far, if really, really chaotic. Can’t wait to move back into the house. Only a couple ‘more months…

  5. For your third blogaversary, I have written you a poem 🙂

    There once was a blogger called Darla
    Who invited everyone into her parlor
    They liked what she wrote
    So they took off their coat
    And stayed for the blogaversary gala!

      1. There isn’t much that rhymes with Darla, so you done good, V. My older brother used to torment me with a song: Darla….smells like a skunk flowah…needs to go to the beauty parlah….

  6. Well Jeezum crow wouldja look at you? 3 years old? Cheers to you!

    Had to laugh at the “can’t make toast” comment. Last night, the 19 year old broke the dryer. Yep. Turned the cycle button the WRONG way and now the dang thing doesn’t start. It doesn’t end. Ever. Sorry for the bad news!

    MJ

  7. Snoring Dog Studio

    Happy, happy, happy Blogoversary! I love your blog and the faces you make. I used to wonder why Maine even existed until I met your blog. Darla validates Maine. Plus, you are so damn funny. I hope for many more years and some more vlogs, too!

    1. “I used to wonder why Maine even existed”. oh my! I spit out my Cheerios reading that. Why, everyone knows Maine exists only because Stephen King lives here. Oh, and so other people have a stupid accent they can make fun of. I might have to do another vlog soon, just because you asked, Jean. I think you’re the only one who really appreciates them.

  8. Impybat

    Congrats on your bloggy anniversary! I was also once an eleven-year-old babysitter. Looking back, I can’t believe my cousins trusted me with their infant. And I knew I couldn’t be the only one who had a problem with those Kashi “twigs”.

    1. I used to babysit four girls, all under the age of six. One was a newborn. I’d be in charge of all these kids for four hours at night and I was 11 years old. Scary, but true.

      I just had another bowl of twigs this morning, added some vanilla soy milk and they still taste exactly like twigs.

  9. Congratulations on 3 years! Your writing is so much fun that I hope there are many, many more blogiversaries in your future.

    Your opening statement in this one completely caught my attention. I felt like Meg Ryan in “When Harry Met Sally.” I was almost screaming/crying “Yes!Yes!” How can our children be so inept at the same age that we were babysitting several other people’s strangers?? My almost 13-year-old daughter just finally opened a can of soup for the first time yesterday. She will never be able to leave home.

    1. I am so happy you know what I’m talking about. Well, happy and a bit concerned because I was certain once my son hit 13 years old he’d be able to at least open a can of soup.

      He does get his own drinks now. Of course, watching him pour a drink is painful. He always ends up spilling it everywhere, then used my good dish towels to mop up the puddle. It’s an exercise in restraint for me to let him do this.

  10. In Manhattan, when you’re a pedestrian, every car is driven by a mental ward escapee. When you’re driving in the city, however, it’s amazing how many idiot pedestrians ignore the traffic signal and leap out in front of your car just as you’re trying to cross the avenue.

    LOL! My bride subsists on a steady diet of Go Lean, but I’ve never bothered to read the package! I’m off to the kitchen after this.

    Go back and reread those early posts. It’s an interesting exercise. You see the arc of not only your history but your writing style.

    Don’t get all weepy on us. You have a reputation to protect. Habby burfday.

    1. So what you’re saying is, in Manhattan, everyone considers everyone else to be a mental ward escapee? Sounds just like Maine.

      The only reason I realized I was actually eating twig cereal was I wondered how in the world someone could make cereal taste so bad so I had to actually read the label.

      I have reread some of my earlier posts. Holy crap. I was writing like I was a 13 year old writing in her diary. Just terrible stuff. I guess I haven’t changed that much.

      1. My understanding was that Maine was founded by mental ward escapees? Is that not the case?

        You could walk into your back yard, fill a cereal bowl with debris, pour some milk over it and it’ll taste exactly the same as Go Lean. Same consistency, too. I’ve tried it and it’s not to my liking. I still eat the same cereal I did when I was a 12-year old boy. Not bragging. Just a fact.

        Listen here, you…your writing is better than most of the crap out there. I’ve been on a kick where I’m trying to find new stuff to read and you can’t imagine how difficult it is to find a distinctive voice. I’ve read posts about the weather for fuck’s sake! Too many people confuse a blog with Facebook. A blog is more work. It requires more thought and a lot of folks simply can’t pull it off. Just keep doing what you’re doing, etc., etc., bla, bla. I’ll check your blog roll for recommendations.

      2. Yes, Maine was founded by mental ward escapees and the warden is Stephen King himself. Makes total sense, doesn’t it? It’s the long-ass winters.

        I actually ate Go Lean every day last week. Every morning, I’d talk myself into it. “Well, SURELY this cereal will taste better THIS time around?” and fell for it every time.

        And your last comments made my day. Thank you. Truly. Blogging IS hard work. I will be sure to remind my husband of this every time I disappear into my laptop for hours working on ONE goddamned post. It’s a time-suck but I love it.

      1. IS THIS TRUE?! Is it really a humiliation for you guys? Because my daughter is on the threshold of needing one and she is FREAKING OUT on us. She doesn’t want to wear one because the straps show! What is that?!?

    1. Oh, stop! I look two?! You must be blind.

      Mr. Skittles has gotten only crankier with every post. His tiny little hands are getting tired of cranking out these posts. I might have to replace him soon.

  11. Darla, my friend, you are a terrific writer, someone who can make me laugh, cry, AND spit out my coffee with one line.

    Congratulations on the 3rd birthday of your 3rd kid.

    And Kashi Twigs will sell like hot cakes after this post!

    1. I’m surprised they didn’t just cut to the chase and call the cereal Kashi Twigs.

      This blog is like a kid to me. But so is my husband. And my mom. So I have five kids now. Explains why I’m so damn tired all the time.

    1. Mr. Skittles has calmed down quite a bit once I fitted him with a diaper and gave him a huge bag of cool ranch Doritos. He’s sitting on my shoulder right now, picking through my hair for gnats. He’s a cheeky lil’ buggah.

  12. For me, it was all about your gravatar. I thought “whoever can rock a PLAID shirt and drink coffee out of a plaid cup has got to be worthwhile.”
    And I was right! You’re absolutely THE hostess with the mostess. Once you stop by Darla’s place, you never want to leave.
    Thanks for making us feel sooooo welcome. Looking forward to your blog’s Sanka years!

    1. I think you’re right–it’s the plaid. My plaid shirt and the plaid mug. You really can’t go wrong with plaid in general. It screams ‘kooky Mainer’.

      Speaking of Sanka….I think I might have to write yet another installment of my mom’s Jeezum Crow chronicles. Thanks, Anka.

  13. Can only explain one of those (and that is hard for somebody who calls herself a Knowitall with PRIDE): The 11 year old son of you cannot make toast himself because – BOYS are behind girls in their development (only about 2 years, but some are even slower). PLUS (this is a multi-reason phenomenon: ) Ma has spoilt that son of hers. She never trusted him with making toast.. So – insist on him doing simple household-tasks like making toast by himself. The toaster does all the work. JUST – make sure he never develops a scientific interest into that toaster !!!

    1. Yes, what you say is true. He’s a mama’s boy and at the same time, I’m a mom who doesn’t want the house to burn down. It’s a conundrum. But I need to let it go. He’s made toast several times this week and so far, so good. Although his buttering techniques leave a lot to be desired. I have faith in him, though, that by the time he’s in college, he’ll be able to make Ramen noodles on a hot plate.

      1. My 16 year old brother could make pancakes for his two younger sisters, and though he was quite interested in blowing up little plastic soldiers of his with ladycrackers, he never burned down the house.

  14. I can only hope there’s a version of Kashi that contains twigs and berries. Congratulations on your 3 year blogoversary! I followed you because so long ago, you came and commented on my Brickie piece and I went to your blog and was blown away by your writing.

    1. Twigs and berries! teehee.

      What’s funny is I distinctly remember your Freshly Pressed Brickie post when we first ‘met’. I even remember what I said to you, that you, “Had me at Brickie.” God, I am such a geek. I remember everything. Well, I can’t remember where I put my glasses, but I remember blog-related stuff and that’s all that matters.

  15. Feliz Aniversario, Darla!! As I recall, the terrible 2’s lasted ten years in my family!! I remember wondering why nobody warned me. But I am glad you are navigating so nicely. Now that you are 3, you can graduate to a pre-school blog (and be on your own for a couple of hours a day) and not just mommy & baby play dates! I am so happy I came upon your blog because it’s been soooo much fun and I have learned a lot from you. 🙂

  16. I am like you were back in those days. I started babysitting at age nine, whereas my son can make his own sandwiches, but fails to put things away or clean his room. I understand you fully. Keep on blogging. I blog when I can.

    1. My son is interesting. He LOVES to pick his stuff up. Truly, he’s very organized and keeps his room super clean and tidy. I never have to ask him to do his chores. but as for the kitchen? He just has zero clue. He can barely pour himself orange juice.

  17. Happy Blog Birthday to you! I always feared the terrible twos, but it was actually the 3 year mark that was completely insane. Why you ask? Because 3 year olds are fearless, independent whirlwinds. Looks like it’s going to be a fun year for all of us…yeah! By the way, that picture cracks me up every time…hahaha!

    1. I really love to inform new parents that the threes are actually much much worse than the twos. Actually, my son hit the “terrible twos” at around 18 months old and they didn’t leave him until he was about five years old. So this means my blog has a few years left of tantrums and I couldn’t be happier.

      I really want to replace my driver’s license photo with that picture now. When I get pulled over for speeding, at least the cop will get a good laugh.

  18. Happy third Blogaversary Darla! I am honored and proud to have been one of your dedicated, devoted readers for just about half of the life of your blog. Thanks for the laughs and damn you for making me cry. But seriously, it’s more than cool that something like a blog can connect people in sometimes, amazing ways. Here’s to another three times three years of writing, vlogging, and creating funny Darla-toons!

    1. Susan, thank you for sticking by me so long. You always leave such thoughtful comments. You really were one of my earlier followers and we met on my About page talking about photography. I actually had a photography blog that kinda fizzled, but at least you and I got to connect! All kidding aside, blogs are an incredible way to get to know other people who live so far away. I am honored and proud to have you as a good friend and it’s because of blogging.

    1. Three years seems like a huge milestone. I think I read somewhere that 99.9% of blogs are abandoned by now.

      He’s made toast several times and still doesn’t quite get it but I have faith.

  19. Happy blogaversary! Or as they say here in Merry Old England, where it’s already tomorrow…your blogaversary was yesterday, get over it.

    The thing with your son is, that he is so adorbs, he will have legions of young, pre-teen hotties lining up to make toast for him. Yup – sorry, but that bizness is not too far off.

    You are a breath of fresh, (coffee-scented) air on the interwebz, Darltastic One, and THAT is why you are gathering minions and sycophants where ere you go.

  20. Congrats on your three years! As every blogger (I almost wrote booger, whoops!) on here knows, it’s no small feat pounding out the posts week after week, sometimes several a week. You are an inspiration!

    1. You’re right–it really IS quite a feat to keep blogging every single week for three years. Well, I did take a small three week break once, but don’t all boogers have to do that once in awhile?

  21. You had best keep on keeping on with this blog for many years to come or else you’ll have both me and Mr. Skittles to answer to. And you don’t want to anger Skittles.

    1. Oh, no, I’ve learned my lesson the hard way with Mr. Skittles. Once I bought him the wrong flavored Doritos and woke up at 1 am to find him standing above my pillow ready to throw his full diaper at my head.

  22. Happy 3rd blogging anniversary, Darla. It is a joy to find a new post from you in my inbox. I know it’s one that’s sure to make me chuckle or, at least, think of the world in a new way. Keep ’em laughing and pondering ‘just where does Darla get those hysterical ideas?’.

  23. haha! i also was (irresponsibly) left in charge of young children at 11. and my son can’t pour himself a bowl of cereal and milk. maybe we should get them together to see who’d find their way out of a paper bag fast – or just decide to sit in there together and hang out.
    happy 3 year anniversary! i knew i’d follow you about a year ago, when i first started and – i think, my memory sucks- we both wrote about coffee the same week, and there was something else.. but yeah, can’t remember now. .but you know what i mean. you’re snarky and funny.good stuff.

  24. DP!!!! Congrats on entering year THREE! I say never grow out of Pull-Ups – they’re just so damn convenient!

    Honestly, you make the blogging world a better place to be, and have enriched my bloggy experience (and life!) more than I can possibly describe.

    P.S. – I laughed SO hard about the toast and the twigs.

  25. Happy three-year-anniversary, Darla! I still remember the post that sucked me in and turned me into a life-long follower – “Very Bad Profile Pics.” It was fun to see one of the pictures again in this post. 😉 You are brave and funny, and I always leave here with a smile.

  26. Le Clown

    Darla,
    Congrats on three years, obviously. But more importantly, that drawing of you on the weighing scale? A dildo. Yes, I saw a dildo. And if I saw a dildo, it means there’s a market for it. And I will not blame the codeine for seeing a hairy dildo.
    Le Clown
    PS: Can I say dildo on this blog? What about prostate massager?

  27. I stopped by last night, hunched over this stupid tablet on a cot in somebody’s living room at midnight, in the middle of England! My comment was funny, it was touching, and apparently it never arrived across the pond. Damn. I hate this tablet computer. So anyway, happy blogaversary – so glad to have made your acquaintance!

    1. Oh, Peg! Thanks, BBFF. It’s the thought that almost counts. Admit it though — you didn’t go over there to visit with your daughter or to catch a glimpse of Prince James…oh no. You went over there just so you could say the phrase “I’m across the pond.” Enjoy yourself, have a spot o’ tea…get out the camera when Prince William starts cursing the baby’s car seat.

  28. thesonnyone

    The wit (and wisdom) all make Dad laugh and rock just a little toooooooo much (when he’s giving Mum the occasional break) through my night time feeds, so…………could you tone it down a little a put a little more sombre in there? (kidding of course!)
    Great stuff; don’t you dare change!

    1. I will try to write more sleep-inducing posts in the future for those floor-pacing nighttime feedings. But I’ll also try to keep cracking you up when you’re sleep deprived. Thanks for the encouragement and I doubt I ever will change.

  29. Your first point drew me in – totally! Our oldest son scoffs at the thought of fast food work. Partly because his dad and I both did that. You know, in the olden-days…. I had everything but kicking him out the door to get a part time job. Then he got one (!) and they tell him that he’s not needed this week, or that week, etc etc. GRRRR. Miraculously, he took my advice and applied elsewhere. We’ll see if he gets a call back. At the least, he’s improving kitchen skills even if leaving some mess. Chocolate cake – frosted, even! – last night. Compliments of the jobless baker in our house.

    1. He made chocolate cake? Wow, I can only dream my son will get to that point one day. To give him credit, it did manage to pour himself a bowl of cereal this morning. But I have a feeling he ate it dry because he didn’t know how to pour the milk.

  30. Call this “comment continued.” I’m up to having 5 Likes and 10 Followers on my baby blog. Yay! I try to remember that I write for me, which is true; however, these Likes are like the effect of “You’ve got mail” or “You’ve been mentioned in a tweet!” that carries more weight than I want to believe! What’s up with that? Anyway, keep the blog rolling – you’ve got a great thing going!

    1. Thank you. And I still remember being thrilled and shocked whenever someone ‘liked’ my posts. In the first year, I’d get maybe one or two likes. One from my old college roommate and the other from my cousin. Still, it made me feel good and kept me writing. That’s all it takes. Well, that and lots of coffee.

  31. So mature for 3 years old! I’m still a scrawny infant but it’s good to know we all have our humble beginnings. I cringe at thinking about the first post I wrote which was only about four months ago. I really love this post though — I may start to retroactively stalk your old posts, just FYI.

  32. I remember those day of being anonymous. Someday I will complain about things that famous people whine about, like not being able to go to the grocery store without being bothered by kids.

  33. Thank you for this post – I’m a brand new baby blogger (will be two months old next week; I can barely hold my own head up and it’s had to tell if I’m smiling or have gas) and I’m feeling very inspired and slightly terrified about the idea of being around in three years! Congratulations and thank you!!

    1. Oh, yes, you may THINK it’s smiling, but it’s always gas. This will last up until the third or fourth year of blogging. Sorry to break it to you.

      It is very terrifying knowing I’ve been doing this for three years. What’s next? Another three years?! Good god, I don’t know if I can do it.

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