Caught in the Web

 Bonkers Over Blogs - Part II

MORE Great Blog Sites

 

by Laura Emery, Field Editor 

Blog (n): a website that contains an online personal journal with reflections, comments, and often hyperlinks provided by the writer; also: the contents of such a site (Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary).

Parenting

Nobody ever said being a mother was easy — but at times, motherhood is good for a chuckle or two. Blogger Beth (over at Five Kids Is A Lot of Kids at http://putdowntheurinalcake.com) has a great sense of humor about the mayhem that can be part of motherhood, but also the magic that is motherhood. She says she is raising her five children to be self-sufficient enough to pay for their own counseling. Her writing is simple, yet catchy. She lures you into her life by the power of the written word, as photos are not prolific in her blog. This says a lot about her ability to relate to her readers — and keep them coming back for more. Among humorous stories of toilet-cleaning trials and birthday cakes gone bad, there are poignant gems also in the mix — like this one about realizing children grow up too quickly. In her post, she writes, “I am going to the grocery store today, and I am going to grab every single mommy-with-little-ones I see, and I am going to hold on tight to her upper arms, and I am going to breathe my coffee breath in her face, and I am going to say, ‘Hug them, mama. This time goes SO FAST. LOVE THEM. They’ll be grown before you know it.’ And all the white-haired ladies in the checkout lines who say these things that make us want to tear our mama hair out will nod in solidarity and give me a fist bump and holler, ‘WORD.’” This blog is about more than bloody noses, wet beds, and bad dreams — it’s a quick, fun read for the Super Mom and frazzled mom alike.

Gardening

Who better to write a gardening blog than a former Martha Stewart garden editor? Margaret Roach is the woman behind http://awaytogarden.com. The blog (which is A Way to Garden, not Away) is named for a book she penned early in her gardening career. A Way to Garden was named best garden book of 1998 by the Garden Writers Association of America. “I have been writing about gardening for nearly 25 years; in my previous lives I was garden editor at Newsday and then for Martha Stewart, where I was the first garden editor of Living and later editorial director of the magazines, books and Internet,” she says. Her blog is more than just going on and on about gardening exploits; it’s an educational, well-written resource. Root through her blog and you will find recipes and cooking tips, information on edible plants and ornamental plants, gardening facts, gorgeous photos, resource links, and even slideshows. For example, a recent post recounts her opinion on ethical questions in garden-seed shopping. She explains, “By choosing seed farmed in conditions like my own — without chemicals, and if possible, in a geographically similar environment — I can contribute less to the pollution caused by conventional seed growing, and also make a happy ‘match’ between the seeds and my garden.” Take your green (or not-so-green) thumb on over to http://awaytogarden.com.

Party Planning

At some point most everyone is faced with the challenge of throwing a party or large gathering — whether it’s a baby shower, a bridal shower, a child’s birthday party, a retirement party, or simply a holiday party. There’s a lot of work that goes into party preparation, but successful party planning makes lasting impressions on guests. Hostess With the Mostess (http://blog.hwtm.com) has a wonderful blog chock full of beautiful photos, creative party ideas, and tons of party hostess tips and tricks. The blog is aimed to provide stylish entertaining inspiration for everyone from the first-time hostess to the seasoned party pro, by featuring imaginative events, clever DIY projects, hostessing tips, cool entertaining products, and plenty of fun party stuff — all in one spot. Currently featured is an Avenger birthday party, a Noah’s Ark baby shower, a pastel Easter garden party for kids, and Snow White birthday party. There are more photos in this blog than writing, but that’s what makes this blog visit-worthy. If you or someone you know has a party to plan, this is the place to go.

Book Reviews

If you’re a bookworm, this is a great blog. Rather Be Reading (http://ratherbereadingblog.com) is a blog started by two women — Magan and Estelle -- who randomly met at a friend’s wedding (one was a bridesmaid and the other was the photographer). They instantly bonded over their love of books. A few months later, they came up with the idea of starting a blog of book reviews. Thus, Rather Be Reading was born. “Our mission is pretty simple: we’ll post three reviews per week, one joint review every month, and will sporadically feature guest bloggers, as well as some other fun posts whenever inspiration strikes,” writes Estelle. The latest review is of The Best of Us by Sarah Pekkanen. Estelle writes, “The Best of Us is a book that is meant to be scorched in the sun, stained with your sun-screened fingers, and maybe even splashed with a little ocean water. I was practically salivating over the luxuries these characters were offered, and I literally could not wait to figure out how this little trip would change them all. There’s a great balance to the sexy, sweet, tough, and nostalgic moments that fill the pages. I’m definitely looking forward to checking out more of Pekkanen’s work.”

The only downside to this blog is that the ladies tend to feature mostly young adult books with a few adult fiction books in the mix. But, in that case, you can always skip on over to The Blue Bookcase (http://thebluebookcaseblogspot.ca) where a wider variety of books are reviewed by several different reviewers. One of the latest reviews is of The House Girl by Tara Conklin. Here’s an excerpt of the review: “The book lasted me through two extremely long baths, leaving me with painfully pruny skin and water long gone cold. It was wonderful. Besides the few little things, this book was an absolute delight to read and I would definitely recommend it (to men and women alike).”

 

 

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