Guest Post: Jillian, of Jillian Loves, on Blogging

photo credit: pni Such A Trooper via photopin (license)

Courage courses where it chooses to course.

guest postIt could be in voicing your heart or remaining silent. It’s there when you retreat and also when you walk up to the table of strangers and say hello, not knowing what to expect or how your life is about to change forever, potentially. But you do it.

Today’s guest blogger knows courage.

Jillian writes Jillian Loves, and once wrote Finishing is Winning. Like many of us, Jillian loves to write. Like many of us, Jillian struggles to find the time to sit down (or even lean against something) and actually get her fingers on the home keys.

Today, Jillian is here to talk about the reasons she stopped blogging – and reasons she should start again.

Please give her a warm CD welcome. And be sure to check out her blogs – both of them – when you get a chance. Also, in the comments, please share some of your owns struggles and trimphs when it comes to this affliction we call blogging.

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Who We’d Give a Million Dollars to, in 6 Words

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One million dollars.

6 words graphicNotice: This post won’t reference Dr. Evil’s famous demand for one million dollars in the Austin Powers movie. I’ve never seen the damn thing. Seems kind of dumb. It’s one of those pop culture things a curmudgeon like me just didn’t get into.

Kind of like the Harlem Shake, The Walking Dead, and anything to do with Kobe Bryant.

The fine citizens listed below in this post, however, know just what to do with a million dollars. In six words. I asked strangers, friends, and strange blogger friends, “If you had $1,000,000 but you had to give it to other people, who would you give it to?”

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Would You Slather on Beard Balm? Here’s What Happened When I Did

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I’ve grown some things in my time.

Three girls. A blog following. Up, kind of. I’ve grown a sometimes-unruly mop of hair, eyes on potatoes, and a ragtag soccer team or three. Growing, though, isn’t always a slam-dunk. I’ve grown restless, I’ve grown weary, I’ve also grown impatient now and again.

Maybe, if I had some sort of ointment, something magical, to make stuff grow better.

I’m talking about a beard, guys. A magic potion that will help me grow something rad, a face rug that extends ear to ear, a beard worthy of lumberjack status. At least of Kenny Loggins or Kenny Rogers but probably closer to Roger Rabbit.

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Go Ask Daddy About Crustacean Cravings, Noodle Knowledge, and Incredible Heroes

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I’m all about culinary diversity.

GAD GRAPHICYou won’t believe me, given the playtime the Gastronomic Trinity – cheeseburgers, pizza, and tacos – gets here. But I’ve eaten Indian food for the first time recently, thanks to my millennial/liberal friends. Took a break from the burger joint and everything.

(They can keep their sushi, though, actually.)

I love some Pad Thai, also. I hadn’t had it in my first 43 years on earth. Sometimes, the sense of adventure in food comes without me knowing it. I accidentally ate alligator once. I ordered fish on a stick in a rural north Florida town.

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How to Behave Like an Elephant (& Live a Happy Life)

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So, elephants.

I’ve sat on this one forever. Not an elephant. I have ridden one before. It was like being on a second-story leather couch. Kind of stinky. No, I’ve been sitting on this post, one I wanted to write about elephants – and not their couch-like qualities and aromas.

Months ago, I wanted to write about elephants and the lessons we could learn from them.

Life got in the way. Coaching, deadlines, commutes and being a dad. Time spent confused and busy and resentful for not being able to be here. Those days are gone for now, and even though I’m a day late on this post, it’s live, isn’t it? (Two days, technically.)

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Go Ask Daddy About Drippy Laundry, Creative License with License Plates, and Invite Etiquette

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Hello. Yes, it’s been a while. Not much. How ’bout you?

GAD GRAPHICSoccer and work and sleep and talking to representatives in call centers about cable and credit cards have monopolized me. I dream of writing. Actually, I dream of pizza and Star Wars prequels even Jennifer Connelly still. I write, but only for those organizations that compensate me.

I wish that weren’t the case.

Not that I’d not get compensated. Writing here is dessert. I love me some other writing, and just finished my first fiction work of any consequence. The writing reps are there. This, though, writing here and connecting with you … that’s home cooking, you guys.

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What We’d Do With a Week of Invisibility, in 6 Words

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Being invisible might suck.

6 words graphicI’m just being real here. My luck, I’d become invisible and walk in front of a cement truck. Or a kale truck even. Wait, are there kale trucks? I’d think that’d be counterproductive to use fossil fuels to deliver y’all’s favorite lib snack.

I took to the web and asked strangers, friends, and strange blogger friends, as I’m wont to occasionally do, to answer a prompt, in six words. Who does that? Ernest Hemingway, for one.

Y’all, for 23,902. (Roughly.) If you could be invisible for a week, what would you do? That’s what I asked. The answers? They were out of sight.

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I Nearly Gave Up On Santa. Here’s What Happened Next

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I can’t even blame Christmas.

Would it shock you to hear that even though my blog has collected moss like a molasses-slow manatee, I feel more on top of my game than ever? I feel a better grip on my carry-on? I do.

I have faith that this wresting back of control will lead me to hit the publish button soon, and often.

I have ideas – with no expiration dates, thankfully. I still want to write about elephants. I have a Go Ask Daddy thisclose to finished. The six words express steams on. I’m in talks with fantastic writers about guest posts.

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Guest Post: Cassie, of Secure Thoughts, on Parental Control Tips for Holiday Gifts

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Grace sprung for her own tablet recently.

guest postShe justified the purchase – and also a llama keychain made from real llama fur and a tiny Peruvian blanket – as good investments, the kind of thing she could pass down to her kids someday. (I love this idea.)

One thing I need to pass down to my own kids: A plan for cyber security, not just for the content she can access, but to protect her accounts online.

That’s where Cassie comes in. She writes for a website called Secure Thoughts. No, this isn’t a site that safeguards my dreams of pizza buffets with Katlyn Carlson. It’s Internet security for everyday people. You know, like you and me.

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Pick a Genuine Gift, Make an Old Dude Happy

I had to borrow a watch for this shot.
Disclosure: I was compensated by BikeBandit in exchange for this blog post.

Forty –five.

It’s a milestone. Not of the stratosphere of 50, where Over the Hill decorations and black balloons lurk. My kids have rounded up to 50 for my age since I was 40. At 16, a man yearns to be 18. At 18, 21 becomes the benchmark. No man yearns or benchmarks for 45.

What does a man on the precipice of a non-milestone milestone age do?

Especially if he hasn’t the gumption – or American Express card – for a full-on midlife crisis? He dreams. Not just of Dana Perino and Hope Solo, but of a personal sea change. Of a regimen of situps and planks, early-morning disc golf, keeping up with his kids.

He imagines choosing the garden salad over the Caesar salad, rather than expect a medal and keys to the city for even having picked the Caesar salad over a can of Pringles. (I did this today.)

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