It’s so hard to know what to write in my first blog post… I’ve been sitting here for at least half an hour now, typing a few words and erasing, taking multiple breaks to check Facebook and email, then coming back to stare at the screen again and type and erase some more. (And, here I go again – just took a break to check the weather forecast online.) This blog is meant to chronicle a journey, a process, and because this process has barely gotten off the ground, there just isn’t much to say as of yet. For now, the best place to start seems to be to expand a bit upon this blog’s “About” page, explaining why MethowBound is out here (out there?) and what I hope to accomplish by writing this blog.
three four goals in writing this blog (and no, I didn’t start out by sitting down and actually making a list of goals before starting; Goal #1 came first, and others followed later) are:
1. Chronicle our journey to move to the Methow Valley over the next couple of years. This process will likely be the biggest, or at least one of the biggest ways in which we plan to change the course of our lives, and will entail many “firsts.” We will move from an urban area to a rural area for the first time ever and will buy or, more likely, build our first home – all on a tiny budget, with lots of DIY. We will probably change careers – while we aren’t fans of the word “career” and don’t really think of ourselves as having careers, the truth is that most of the jobs we’ve held to date have been in occupations that are generally more suited to city life, and we will likely end up doing different types of work when living in the Methow than we have done in the city. This will almost certainly be the case for my husband, and could very well end up being the case for me. We will also most likely share a home with other family members, at least part of the year, for the first time in our married life. Oh, and we may just try to have a kid or two along the way… So, definitely an adventure that is worth some virtual journaling, even if it just for the two of us to click through years later and smile (or cry what will hopefully be happy tears, or roll our eyes), don’t you agree?
2. Practice and build my writing skills. I’m pretty experienced with certain types of writing from all those years in school and at work; however, blogging is not something I’ve ever really done. I did start a blog years ago for a website that I run for one of my self-employment gigs, but never really got into it and ended up using the blog mostly to promote my services, writing short, straightforward paragraphs to announce an upcoming opportunity or thank a client. I’ve also kept a pen-and-paper diary between the ages of 12 and 19, but that was a different type of writing, undertaken to express those teenage thoughts and feelings that I didn’t think I could share with anyone else. That full-on confessional, painfully private kind of diary-keeping doesn’t appeal to me these days. I’m much more interested in going the blog route, producing a body of writing that I will share with the public from day one, and eventually hope to share with friends and family members too. As a non-native English speaker and as someone who loves to write, I am constantly on the lookout for ways to improve my writing and try my hand at different styles and different mediums (media?).
3. Force myself to do something regularly and see it through to completion. While I seem to be fairly good at starting projects, I’m actually not always great at follow-through (when it comes to personal projects, that is; I like to think that I do a decent job following through on work tasks!). Those knitting needles? Gathering dust on top of the wardrobe along with an unfinished hat and a scarf that was completed but never worn (too itchy, curls up into a thin, useless rope due to an unfortunate choice of pattern, but that brown and tan alpaca wool sure looked attractive and promising as fluffy skeins on a yarn store shelf!). That family cookbook project? Well, I do still have that list of recipes that my mom and I brainstormed together in her kitchen one evening, jotted down in her effortless handwriting on the back of a sheet of paper from one of those realtor advertising notepads that must have come in the mail. I take the list out of the recipe folder on my kitchen counter and look at it a couple times a year, then put it back. It’s still there, yes, but it’s still very far from becoming a cookbook. (Sorry, mom!) Well, what about that diary that I just mentioned, that I kept from age 12 to age 19? Sure, I did write in it regularly – as far as I can recall, at least once a week, usually more often – but this was a long time ago. Strangely, I seem to have been better at follow-through as a teenager than as an adult… I plan to blog once a week, every week, unless I am away from the computer for an extended time period or something extraordinary happens that prevents me from writing. Hopefully this will be a good exercise in sticking with something I started.
4. And, building on #3, another purpose that this blog can serve is to force ourselves to do at least one thing every week to bring us closer to our goal. Even if I am this blog’s sole reader, I know I will start to feel guilty if I write too many posts that begin, “No news to report this week” and instead upload pretty pictures of mountains and meadows… For now, the steps we take will be small and very preliminary – work on paying off credit card debt so we can qualify for and afford a mortgage, find some people who have moved to the Methow from Seattle or another big city and learn about their experience, make a few trips to the valley at different times of the year to get a better sense of the climate. Eventually, we hope to progress to bigger, more tangible steps – sit down with lenders, look at land or homes for sale, get some hands-on construction experience…
So, with these lofty goals in mind, off to my new blogging adventure! If you are reading this post, that means I’ve successfully figured out a basic WordPress blog setup, and we are one step closer to being MethowBound!