Contacting Me

You can always email me at karen@karenika.com. I love email.

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Profuse Apologies

If you’re getting emails from me by subscription, you might have just gotten 52 new ones from me cause I was trying to remove a category. I apologize profusely and it will never happen again. I am so deeply sorry for the annoyance.

Personal vs. Private

I often get emails from friends and readers who comment about how they’re amazed at how open I am and how much I am willing to share on the blog. And how they love it but would never be able to share as much as I do. If you’d known me as a kid, you’d find it even more fascinating.

I was the most private kid I know. I wrote diaries all my life and locked them and carried them everywhere with me. I told my secrets to no one. I mean no one. My best friend kept telling me how unfair it was that she told me everything and I told her nothing. I wasn’t trying to be unfair. I wanted to tell her things too.

But I just couldn’t.

Somehow I felt like the world would end if I said anything out loud. She’d make fun of me. She’d tell others. She’d think less of me. Whatever. You name it, I worried about it.

So I stayed mum.

All the way to college, I wrote. Even during college, I kept diaries sporadically. So people who knew me as a kid would be amazingly surprised that I share things so publicly.

But here’s the thing: there’s a big difference between personal and private.

While I do share a lot of personal thoughts, feelings and sometimes bits of events here, I never share what I consider to be private. I rarely ever talk about my husband. I don’t share intimate details of our marriage or my kids’ lives (at least what I consider to be intimate). I believe in keeping private things private. To me, this is the biggest issue with blogging while you’re “raw.” I’ve had friends start blogging after a big breakup or some other personal event and they use the blog to vent, breakdown, or just get things out of their system. I don’t believe the blog is the best medium for that. (This is just my personal thought, I respect other people’s thoughts, too and I believe each person should do what feels right for them.) I remember about ten years ago, my husband was worried about all my blogging, so I printed out all my posts up until then and he read them all and saw that there really was nothing private in them.

Most of what I share is as an example to a bigger concept, feeling, thought I am trying to explain. Most of what I share is about me.

And here’s what I learned: I like sharing about me.

I like writing about my thoughts, feelings, days. Not only is it a record of where I am right now in my life but it’s also my way of connecting to a world much bigger than my physical one. It allows me to have conversations with people who feel the same way (or who feel very differently) and I love that dialogue. And I’ve learned that for that kind of dialogue to happen, someone has to start talking. Someone has to initiate.

I am a big believer in connecting through dialogue. Sharing knowledge. Sharing perception. Sharing ways of looking at life.

Sharing stories.

I think we need more people sharing stories. It is through others’ stories that we feel less alone in the world. It is through others’ authentic (not glossy) stories that we feel connected through the good and the bad.

So I do what works for me. Over the years, my blog has changed with me and I posted writing, photography, knitting, art, scrapping, and everything else I did over the thirteen years I’ve been doing this. And through all that, I had words. I shared the personal. I used it as a place for me to collect my life, my thoughts, my stories. And to connect.

I try to be open and honest here. I do share the personal. But I keep the private for my journal. For me, that’s where the line is drawn. I don’t mind being vulnerable and honest as long as it’s not something I consider private. And your line might be somewhere wildly different than mine. Maybe you do consider some of what I share private. Some people consider any sharing private. That’s totally ok with me. I’ve been lucky enough to receive nothing but good will and kindness for what I share. But I completely understand the worry others might have.

I know the younger Karen would have worried too. She would have kept her blog private (assuming she ever had one.) We all have to do what feels right for us. I believe that wholeheartedly.

But, this Karen loves being here. I love sharing. I love the rewards of knowing I am not alone.

Which also comes back to those of you who comment and email. Thank you. While I try to write for myself, my biggest reward is you and your willingness to reach out to me.

testing

Hello everyone! If you’re seeing this you’re seeing my site on the new server. Still getting things to work. Come say hi!

If You’re Subscribed to my Blog by Email

I am so sorry about all the emails you just got. I was trying to update some old posts to make sure they had the right categories and unbeknownst to me, the program decided to just email them all out. It won’t happen again and I apologize profusely.

2010 Blog Schedule

I’ve written about importance of a routine before. I am a firm believer of setting schedules and organizing tasks ahead of time as much as possible. I’ve learned that if I do that, I am considerably more likely to get the task accomplished.

That’s why I list the books I will read, the projects I will do, etc. etc. I know that if I’ve already made the list, I am halfway there.

Since August 1, I’ve been posting on my blog every single day. Some days several times a day but every day at least once. And I love that. I love seeing all these posts later and I love reading them later so I am really enjoying having them here. And I want to continue this.

One of the things I did in September to make this easy on myself was to come up with a schedule for the week. And I’ve mostly kept to it. So I am now making one for 2010. Here’s the current plan (always subject to change of course):

Daily – Photos, 3 Things I’m Thankful For, Thoughts of the Day and mindfulness

MondaysCrafting with David
Tuesdays – Thoughts on Gratitude & other topics
WednesdayCreative Therapy
ThursdaysA book a week & Digital Downloads
FridaysWeekly gratitude
Saturdays52 things in 2010
SundaysWeekly Layout

The Tuesday and Thursday posts will be cross-posted on the Weekly Gratitude blog and the Wednesday post will be cross-posted at Creative Therapy blog. Sundays will likely be full of layouts I make for A Million Memories.

I set the digital downloads for the same day as the book a week because I know that I won’t get to finish a book every single week so I will still have a post on that day either way.

I like to balance my site so it has both words and art so I tried to create a schedule where they either alternate or there’s both every day.

At least, this is the plan. Better than not having a plan. Let’s see how it all works out. I plan to start the schedule on January 4 since that’s the first Monday of the year.

Subscribing to my Feed

I know a few of you have been emailing me or leaving comments about how my new feed isn’t showing up. I apologize profusely for the inconvenience.

Edited to add: My friend Manu told me this rss feed wasn’t doing its job properly, so I registered for a feedburner feed and so I am updating the links: Here’s the link for the new feed: http://feeds.feedburner.com/Karenika¬†and a clickable version http://feeds.feedburner.com/Karenika I just tested it on Bloglines and it works. Please let me know if it doesn’t work for you.

In this blog you can also subscribe to the comments I get here: http://www.karenika.com/?feed=comments-rss2 (I am not sure you want this ever but since the option is there, I wanted to show you.) http://www.karenika.com/?feed=comments-rss2

There’s also Atom instead of RSS but if you know the difference, you’ll know how to get it.

The link I gave in the other RSS feed you were subbed to should also work but just in case, here we are.

Thank you for asking me and wanting to subscribe to my posts. I appreciate it immensely.

Posting Comments

I meant to note this last time but I forgot. When I changed blogs, my sister commented that it was considerably harder to leave a comment since you had to load the entire page, etc etc. So I now have another link called “leave quick comment” which opens up a small window under the post, without loading anything else. You should be able to leave comments this way if you so choose. If you want to see all the comments, you still have to click on the “X comments” link.

Let me know if you have any feedback.

Getting in the Groove

I started this blog on August 2000.



Since we just passed the nine year mark, I’ve decided to try some new things for the blog. Mostly to keep myself regular and posting everyday and also a chance to try out some things I’ve wanted to for a while. So I made a little schedule for myself and as a reminder to myself I am going to post it here and do my best to keep to it.



photos
I will still keep posting daily photos. I want to take more “non family” photos so I will attempt to do more of that. I will still have daily Nathaniel since we’re still in his first year and I promised I will take photos every day in his first year. I will make sure to have at least one photo of David every week. One photo of myself every week. And monthly (ideally more frequently) photos of me and the kids and Jake and the kids and all four of us. Let’s see how this goes.



Here’s a schedule for non-photo posts I want to make daily:

Mondays: I will post a video of something. Either a photoshop/digital tip or a non-digital technique etc.



Tuesdays: A new layout/mixed media art, etc.



Wednesdays: A digital download package. It will have anywhere from 7 to more digital elements in it.



Thursdays: My weekly tag.



Fridays: Books. I am starting to read more and will challenge myself to read a book a week (more coming on this) and on Fridays I will write about the book I read that week.



Saturdays: A photo tip. This will be a tip on photography. Technicals, how to improve, how to use your camera, etc. Just my compilation of this information.



Sundays: A new creative therapy catalyst.



My plan is to also post at least 3 longer journaling-type entries a week. When I look back upon my years of posting here, besides the photos, those are my favorite posts. Here’s to hoping I can make that happen.

If You’re Out There

Please take the time to say hi today. Tell me that you were here. Just this one time.

Trying

Will this really work?

New Changes Abound

So a while ago, I created this sub-site for my scrapbooking fun. At the
time, I thought the regular readers I had might not be interested in my
scrapping stuff and my scrapbooking readers might not be interested in
all the writing I do. But today, I decided that’s over. Scrapping,
painting, art are now a part of who I am. Just like everything else. So
it’s all one page now. If you don’t like it, you can always just read by
category. Those are still around.

Hope this is not a big deal. But this site has grown and changed with me
for nine years now so here’s another one.

Housecleaning

I just posted around twenty layouts that mean that the site is now
caught up to all my recent scrapbooking. I also separated the two sites
for those of you who don’t care for scrapbooking and those of you who
don’t care about my non-scrap related thoughts. The scrapping has its
own site and the link is permanently on the top right.

I also separated the rss feeds. If you want the main site, href="http://www.karenika.com/rss.xml">here’s the feed for all but
scrapbooking. If you want the scrapbooking one, href="http://www.karenika.com/scrap.xml">here is the scrapbooking one.

If you want both in one rss, href="http://www.karenika.com/index.rss">here is both.

At some point, I might join all back, but for November, this is how
things will be.