Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Keeping it real

I received an email from a reader yesterday and I wanted to address her concern in a post. I assume that because I have received this email, it's likely that some of my other readers are wondering the same thing. And so here it is.

Her email:

"I have been reading your blog for some time now and in the past have found many wonderful ideas for entertaining. While I congratulate you on your new baby, I have to wonder if the purpose of your blog still stands. Just a reminder that many of us who read your blog do so for its intended purpose, entertaining, not to view and keep up with your personal joys in new motherhood. My intention is not to diminish your joy in sharing but to prompt thought in where it is best to share your joy and whether the blog’s title is actual being served."

My response:

"I appreciate your email and feedback. This is something I've been thinking about since I had Juliet and in an ideal world, I would have a separate blog to capture memories and share stories about my baby girl, however, it just isn't feasible right now. In the future I may remove that content and place it on a new blog but that is all TBD.

What I don't think a lot of my readers realize is that I don't have a blog to make money. It's a hobby, plain and simple. My readers visit my blog because they enjoy the content and it's free, they don't pay for a subscription for access. I don't have big advertisers that pay me monthly or make commission off links from product recommendations. At best, I have small advertising that maybe covers my Starbucks habit on a monthly basis.

My point is, I don't have the pressure of paying advertisers or paying readers that would require me to focus only on specific genres for content creation. And that allows me freedom to write and post about anything I want. I realize that some readers may only be interested in the food/entertainment aspect of my blog but there are many other readers that are personally interested in personal/lifestyle type content that often includes subjects other than parties and food. I have always written about my life, with food and parties as the center, but now the center of my world is something different. I truly hope to be able to continue writing about recipes/food and parties but it will likely not be as frequent as before. With working full-time and having a baby, I just don't have the time I had before. I don't know how some of these other bloggers do it! I hope you continue visiting."

And there you have it. Right now, my life is all about baby/work/hubby and even my sweet kitty Kody has been needing more of my attention...so blogging comes later. I still love this blog and love the creative outlet it has provided me, the sweet and supportive readers I have connected with and a passion for food and parties that has grown from it.

I do think I'll get back to more frequent foodie/party posts in time.  So if you choose to be patient and continue visiting (and hey, maybe you may even like seeing posts of my baby girl), I thank you.

44 comments:

  1. I LOVE seeing pictures of your baby girl!! Keep up the great work :)

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  2. I think you handled this very well - this is YOUR blog to do with as you wish. Your focus has now changed and so then your blog may do to. If your previous 'entertaining' readers don't enjoy what you're posting now, then they should find other entertaining blogs to read. It's that simple really.

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  3. Agree with Shayne. I actually found the email from a reader a little rude. You did handle it very well, I imagine it may have been difficult too. X

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  4. I agree with the previous posters. This is your blog, and you should blog about what inspires you. Right now you are inspired by new motherhood and the beauty of your new baby...and congratulations! Personally, I respect the honesty you are showing by sharing your life with your readers and not feeling compelled to only blog within a spall genre.

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  5. I want to applaud both YOU and the email writer for being so level headed. While the email could be deemed as rude, yes, I must say I have seen MUCH ruder letters regarding blog content.

    I think you handled yourself well and agree this is your blog, you do you.

    Your baby is darling! :) xoxo

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  6. To be honest, I enjoy the adorable Juliet posts more than the entertainment/food ones - so yes there are some of us out here that definitely enjoy following along during this exciting time in your life! Please keep posting photos of baby girl :)

    xxx
    Jenna

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  7. What is wrong with people? If readers don't like reading about Juliet, then don't visit. But, I would assume most of us love watching her grow and being part of this wonderful experience. And, Juliet does eat, does drink and she is pretty, too, so there you have it. Keep it up, we love you!

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  8. Good for you! It's your blog, you do what you want with it. I love seeing pictures of your beautiful baby girl :)

    www.thebaloneybug.com

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  10. Wow!
    I believe I actually joined your site after Juliet was born & I love seeing her sweet face.
    I joined your blog for the sole purpose that I found it interesting, inviting, and fun.

    Juliet & Entertaining both welcome! :)
    Eat Cake

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  11. The person who emailed you has entirely too much time on their hands... They should start their own blog!! Ugh. The nerve. Keep doing you, girl!!

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  12. Yikes! That came off as rude to me as well... and you handled it very well. I LOVE seeing posts about being a new mommy (I had a baby 3 days after you!) mixed in with your regular content posting. I can't believe you are juggling work, being a mom, and blogging! You write about what you want to write about!

    P.S. I think that someday you will enjoy looking back at the posts you have about Juliet... kind of like a scrapbook!

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  13. Your blog, your content--absolutely! But I have to think that you posted this and wrote such a kind response because you care what your readers think/want them to know what to expect. In a similar situation, Reichel at Copy Cat Chic found a way to please both. I don't know how she did it, you'd have to ask her, but she found a way for baby-loving people to only get baby stuff, decor-loving people to only get decor stuff, and people who loved both could still get both; one blog, three options. Just an idea that seems to keep everyone happy with minimal work.

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  14. I think your blog is wonderful, and it's just that...YOUR blog...to do with as you wish! I too thought the e-mail was rude, and really quite unnecessary! Keep doing what you are doing - you have many loyal readers who love to see your beautiful Juliet!
    Jo-Anna

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  15. Your blog. Do what YOU want.Those who mind don't matter and those that matter don't mind. Thanks for the heads up. As a mom of two that blogs about everything under the sun I will for sure continue tuning in.

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  16. Wow. I like your blog whether it be subject that day of food or baby. It's life. I think you handled that email beautifully. Much better than I would have--- Trust.

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  17. Juliet posts are my absolute favorite!! She is so beautiful and sweet! I always look forward to these posts, and I check everyday for new updates. You really addressed a pretty rude email with integrity and grace, and I assure you that you will treasure these posts for years to come and after this obsurd email is long forgotten. It's true!

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  18. Thank you so much for all your wonderful comments and support. Truly made my day!

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  19. I think you do a great balance of baby and foodie posts. I joined while you were still pregnant and I am continuing to stay after as well, because not only am I a mom but I think as Juliet gets older and starts eating real food I think you will have AWESOME posts about finding what works and doesn't work for kiddos. You are super creative and I look forward to reading for a long time to come!!

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  20. You handled that so well. People who have a problem with your content can't find a different blog to read... Congratulations on motherhood, and thanks also for your "foodie" posts. Hope you didn't let that meanie get you down!!!!

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  21. Sorry, autocorrect --- can**** find a new blog to read. Oops!

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  22. Good for you! You handled that very well...and I agree with Mindyz, there will be lots of great foodie posts, and great tips for those with little ones. Life changes, and as an extension of yourself, your blog will too! Now, if you start trying to sell us motorcycles or something, that's a different story :)

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  23. GOOD FOR YOU! LOVE the blog!!

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  24. Your blog is fabulous, just the way it is. Most importantly it is YOUR blog. So, keep writing about what you want to write about. You are never going to please all of the people out there; none of us can. Your entertaining posts & posts with Juliet are all fantastic!!! Don't change a thing!

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  25. I'm also in the "that email was rude!" camp. I think it was written well but geez o' flips - I think that reader obviously does not have children. Your baby girl is still so tiny, I'm amazed you are able to do ANY blog posts!!

    Definitely a balancing act but your content is great. EVERYTHING changes when the little ones arrive and it's natural that you may re-think your blog content. Keep doing what works for YOU! I know you will.

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  26. Tell the unsolicited advice givers to suck it. You are keeping it real and that's what is nice about your blog. Compared to the other slick "blogs" that are really just websites promoting whomever will pay them or their friends with "posts" that read like generic magazine articles, I'd rather read about someone's real life experiences and thoughts. Good on you for handling the email with gracious aplomb.

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  27. I love seeing any an all blog posts you have...I of course love food/entertaining, so I love seeing new recipe/entertaining ideas but I love seeing cute pics of Juliet! She too is apart of my life now! :)

    Libby

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  28. Very well said - I have enjoyed all of your posts coming through my daily blog feed pre, during, and post pregnancy!

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  29. Well written response, I agree, my blog is a hobby and if some one doesn't like it, then close the page and move on to the next. Your little gitl is adorbale, and I've loved your posts on her :)

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  30. Love your blog! I came across it awhile ago while I was planning my wedding and I've continued reading it. I often come back to your recipes for quick dinner/entertaining ideas. But I also love reading about your little girl! Keep up the great work!

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  31. Miss Jenna,

    I too have followed your blog over the last few years. I was a new mother at the time and I loved that you were a local girl and a very real and honest person!! You have been gracious enough to share your life with all of us, and in a way we readers have become a small part of your family (NOT in a CREEPY way!) :) Yes, your blog changed. It changed because you did! I was so happy for you when you shared you were pregnant, and when I read your blog now I tear up sometimes as I remember my first moments with my newborn, and I connect with how you're feeling. I know I can't speak for all of your readers. But I respect what you have done, and I respect how your life has changed, and I appreciate the fact that you still share your real moments with us as a mother and as a person. Sorry to get all mushy! You handled that e-mail very well. You "warned" us all of your future content, and you owe us nothing! We appreciate you. Ejoy your new life. It's a whole new world of glamour and beauty...

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  32. Another vote for writing whatever the heck you want to write about! It seems some people taking blogging a little too seriously! :)

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  33. Frankly I'd rather see a million pictures of a cute baby then see a blog go all commercial and just turn into post after post of advertising. You handled it very graciously.

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  34. Wow, some people really need to get a life if they are that concerned with what YOUR blog content is. Seriously, it's your blog, do what you will with it. I know you have a passion for entertaining and such, but right now your life is consumed with your sweet girl, which it should be. How dare she criticize you for that. Like you said, it's your blog, you will do what you feel fit with it, you don't get paid to do this so whatever turn it takes will be for you, and not for crazies like that! Ok, off my soapbox!

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  35. I say write what you want to write. Well handled though and I can totally appreciate your dilemma. I have been ill recently and didn't know wether to mention it on my blog (very tiny compared to yours), I think if something major is happening in your life the readers who care want to know, I have made some lovely virtual friends through my blog and long may it continue. Keep up the great work. A x

    http://amandalincoln.blogspot.co.uk

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  36. I loved your blog before you had Juliet and I love it now! She is so pretty and I love all your posts about her and your job in motherhood! I also love that you still post about entertaining and the meals that you have post baby because they are ideas any mom could pull off! Thanks again!

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  37. Everyone’s life goes through changes, and a personal blog should be allowed to grow with the author. I love both food/party blogs and parenting/baby blogs...so your pictures and updates of Juliet are right up my alley! As another work-outside-the-home mom (who also doesn’t earn an income from the blog!) I’ve learned that sometimes it’s most important to just post what you want to post and then let the readers/stats do what they want!

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  38. Wow, your response was so nice but really who sends emails like that?! I'm completely with Michelle's comment as stated above.
    I'm a new mom as well and occasionally I have a snippet on my personal life/ little girl as well vs the random things that are inspiring me at the moment. Our blogs are our outlet and we should be free to post what we want as we please.

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  39. Keep blogging about the things that are on your heart! This is your outlet- and if you never write another entertaining post again, that should be OK! Your baby girl is beautiful. Baby girls grow up; parties last forever! :)

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  40. I'm not the person who emailed, but I actually think their email was well-mannered and an honest question. I don't think that just because this reader comes for specific content that has been nearly completely eclipsed by the birth of Jenna's baby is reason to claim her message as "rude" or that she's in need of getting a life, etc. Just because a female reader's top interest isn't motherhood or the babies of those she encounters in life and online doesn't warrant such criticism from commenters! Jenna, your daughter is beautiful and this space should be whatever you want it to be, but as a follower of your blog for a long time, I visit it much less and have even considered unsubscribing to it because the posts have become mostly about your transition into motherhood. This isn't what I visit particular sites for and, like the person who wrote to you, folks are entitled to read what they want. When you become a public figure, of any level, and acquire a following - no matter how big or small - you open yourself up to questions about what you're putting out to the world. As far as I'm concerned, that's all this person did was ask about the future content of the blog. I think Jenna handled the situation well, but the bitter backlash from commenters is silly and far too defensive.

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  41. I actually (personally) enjoy the more personal blog posts AS WELL as the inspirational ones. I love a great tablescape blog or DIY invitation blog just as much as seeing a baby's one month old picture blog. It makes the blog writer more real to me. We see you for your ups and downs and we can more relate to you.

    I actually JUST wrote a blog on this VERY thing ("10 Things I'm Afraid to Tell You") where I describe how hard it is to blog. I try to open the reader's eyes to what hard hard work we actually put in, to make one blog and that sometimes all you can get is a personal blog. And not that it's "All you can get"...those are great blogs too! We want to relate to the reader. Keep up the good work, :)

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  42. that's a big douchey email to mail someone. like you said, no one is paying her to read your blog. seriously? just stop reading.

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  43. Oh Jenna I'm sorry you had to deal w someone like this! As most of your other comments said, I read your blog before Juliet was born and loved the fun parties and foods you posted about, but I'm a mommy too and love all the sweet baby girl posts too! It's a blog Eat Drink Pretty and I think Juliet qualifies all those categories!

    You have to take the good w the bad unfortunately since having a public blog. Please don't change just bc of one reader and her opinions. If she chooses to read only about food and party planning then she can unsubscribe and go to those sites. You are doing a great job at juggling it all and taking time to include your readers in on your life and I love your blog!

    Thanks and I hope you don't get discouraged by her comments!

    Laura
    laurasblondemoments.blogspot.com

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