Blogging, family, mid-life

I May Be Too Old To Blog

I am really feeling my age this week. It was a milestone birthday for my daughter, The Southern Belle, and my birthday is just around the corner, but the birthdays are not what is making me feel old. Blogging… well probably more than blogging, technology in general, is making me feel old. I mean like prehistoric, ” I remember when I was your age..” kind of old.

Two years ago my son in law introduced me to blogging.  (Thank you, Big Cat.)  I set up a Blogger account, and spent time learning to work with Blogger. It did not play nice with my iPad so I took another leap and moved to WordPress. It has never been my intent to blog for a living. I have a great job that challenges me and pays me well. I blog and work on furniture because I am an empty-nester who needed a hobby to keep my hands busy and mind occupied after work. I actually lose weight working on furniture because it is so physical and I don’t hate it like the gym. I enjoy connecting with people who I would never meet in any other way and connecting with old friends who sometimes find me by accident. I do however feel really uncool because although I have a personal Instagram account, a personal Pinterest board, and a Twitter account, I really don’t understand two one of them.

When it comes to Twitter, I just don’t get it.  I want everyone to know that this symbol – #- back in my day (there, I said it)  was the pound sign or the symbol for a number. Not sure how it got the name hashtag. I don’t know how to look for anything based on hashtags, so feel free to share the secret with me.

According to my students, who are high schoolers, it is really uncool to use any filters on Instagram (#nofilters). I am not sure why, but okay. I don’t like the filters anyway. I think they make the photos look dumb. My main problem with Instagram is that I have no idea how to follow someone else on Instagram. Oh and I only know how to post to Instagram using a program called Over on my iPad or iPhone. I am stuck if I want to post from a computer or directly from Instagram. I think my kids ( personal and professional) are intentionally keeping that little piece of information from me. Or, maybe they don’t think I could follow the instructions and would be asking for help.

I set up a Facebook page for my blog less than a year ago… with help.  I often mess up on the posts.  I am about 50/50 at successfully linking up to someone’s Linky party, and I cannot, cannot, cannot figure out the bitly thing to give my posts a shorter name.  Sorry folks.  Google + and Google Hangouts?  No clue although we are going to Chromebooks at school next year so I better learn.

All this brings me back to blogging. I think I am going to start a monthly series entitled Keeping It Real. I am more and more concerned because I think Pinterest is causing women to believe that everything has to be a show worthy event or they are a complete and total failure. I put out a call for real life DIY’ers and Bloggers to send me their work space. I hear  often from people, usually on messenger or email, that they like what I do and would do projects and try their hand at refinishing/ repurposing if only they had the space.  The perception seems to be that it is impossible to work without a dedicated space to create in.  Ha!  I have started to some great  photos through Facebook and was feeling pretty good about myself and the project until I heard from Dee at Deeconstructed  and felt like a GEEZER.

( By the way Dee is a very talented DIY’er.  I recommend you read her stuff and she writes an online magazine that is great for picking out some cool projects off blogs I had never read before, but back to my story.)

Here is what she said in the message she sent:

” You should create a whole buzz around it and assign #showmeyourswap or #shopswap or something catchy like that for people to “link up” on Twitter/Instagram/Pinterest/FB to get in on fun. That way if they search that hashtag they’ll see everyone’s that sent it in. “

WHAAAT? Dee, I think you are amazing, but are you speaking English? Is there a dictionary I can refer to for assistance? Thesaurus?

Here was my response to Dee:

“Dee- you are so much more equipped to do stuff like that this than me. I only have a Twitter account so I can follow my kids and send messages to my students. I feel like a freakin’ dinosaur when I hear from folks like you. I think this summer I need to go to blog school. Seriously.”

FYI- the series is coming along and she is going to help me with the technology stuff. #iamveryexcited

All this lack of knowledge started me thinking  that in fact I may be too old to blog.   Has technology passed me by so much that I cannot catch up?  Am I a technology geezer who needs to be put out to pasture? Is there any hope for me?

I did some research last night and this is what I discovered.

There are 31 million bloggers in the U. S. A. the average age is 21-35.  (YIKES!)

50.9% of them are women. (This was a surprise to me since ¾ of the men in my family don’t even follow MY amazing blog, much less write one.)

Only 8% of bloggers earn enough blogging to support a family. (I honestly had no idea that many bloggers earn that much money. I get NOTHING for blogging- it is a hobby. Perhaps I need to figure out the whole getting paid thing, hmmm)

81% of bloggers earn less than $100 blogging. ( Yay me, I am in the majority here. #iwriteforfree)

There are 528,000,000 page views monthly. ( Just so you know I have had 66,262 page views in 2 years.)

I did an internet search for ” I am too old to blog” and found that this topic has been written about several times. My favorite was a 26 year old.

Seriously? I mean, if 26 is too old to blog what does that mean for someone who is more than twice her age? Thank goodness she decided she wasn’t too old! Here is another cute one referring to Little Bird Fashion’s blog:

I really do want to learn to improve my technology skills and I am going to do that because I like learning new things and I want to feel competent at what I do, but it really circled back to what is bothering me most about the internet/Pinterest and the perception  that what others show you online is what their life is like all the time. Their homes are clean, children are fed healthy meals, and there is domestic bliss.   I feel like a failure when I see slick photos on other blogs or “bells and whistles” that I cannot even understand. For a moment it causes me to forget why I started blogging in the first place and doubt myself. Do I even belong on the blogosphere?

Why yes, I do believe there is a place for even a geezer like me.  I have a unique perspective based on my own personal experience.  What Hubby and I do with furniture and our home is something that anyone can do, and not break the bank.

It really all boils down to the fact that I blog for myself and as long as it is fun for me, I will continue.  If it stops being fun or takes a toll on my self esteem, it will be time to step away.  I wanted to take a minute to thank those of you who read my blog, leave me notes, like my Facebook page, Pin my work, and stay in touch with me.  I really do appreciate you.  #youarethebest

I hope you have a wonderful day,



23 thoughts on “I May Be Too Old To Blog”

  1. Aww, Mrs. Smithson! You’re not too old to blog; there is certainly a place for you in the Blogosphere! (My mother would totally sympathize with you though. She won’t update her iPhone from ios6 to ios7 just because she’s afraid she’ll never figure out how to use it.) I’m sure that you can get a little more tech-savy with some help. I’m also sure that any of your current or past students (myself included) would be more than happy to help explain things or show you the ropes. Best of luck on your tech. adventures!

      1. Oh. Jordan could do that and convert it into Euros if needed. She is an amazing young lady.

  2. You made me smile Karen. My daughters (17 and 21) think I’m a bit technologically backward, but I figure I know my way around a computer, can do a bit of HTML coding and Photoshop (which helps with my blogs and my job) … that’s enough for this gal who grew up with manual typewriters 🙂 Karen

  3. Hi Karen: I was trying to read your post on my iPhone but, had to switch over to the computer (such tiny words on the iPhone) I agree with you about the pictures on Pinterest. People would probably be horrified to see my actual workspace(s) I do try to put my best foot forward when taking pictures for the blog but, maybe I should post one picture on each post that shows the “whole picture or as Paul Harvey was fond of saying “now for the rest of the story.”

  4. Ok here are my thoughts – I didn’t know how to blog until I learned to blog. I was exactly the same way with driving a car and using power tools. You don’t how to do anything until you do. If you want to learn – you’ll figure it out – but no one says you have to learn everything there is to learn to get the job done. I could have stuck to a moped & gotten around just fine (although it would be hard to curb surf and bring home treasures on a scooter). And, who cares if you can’t navigate the technology like people fresh out of diapers what you do have to offer is experience. None of us want to read about what the 26 year old did yesterday but please, please tell me a story about you when you were 26 – that will have meat, I am sure of it. Lastly, while I don’t buy into the whole ‘blog tribe’ crap I DO believe there are a handful of people who ‘get it’ when it comes to blogging and those are the people I get info from. Btw – they are all pretty much 40 year old geeky guys. So, there’s that. Thanks for the plug, I’m always here if you (or anyone else) has any questions about anything. If I don’t have the answer I’ll try to find out or come up with a really good lie. Deal? (smile)

    1. Thanks, Dee. I am really enjoying the post tonight. It appears I am not alone. I really am not afraid to learn new things, thank goodness. It just takes me longer to remember. I also work with teenagers every day so I have learned to laugh at myself. I will be asking for help.

  5. Karen, I feel like a dummy because I can’t seem to learn how to operate my sprinkler system correctly— it is like freakin’ Chinese to me, so I can’t even imagine doing what you do blogging!! You’re way up there in the stratosphere compared to me!

      1. I would love to blog if I could figure out how to start. (I used to have an online newsletter, is it anything like that?) I’ve tried so many times to figure out the sprinkler system that I’m starting to think there is some kind of conspiracy to keep me out of it.

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