I don’t really leave comments on blogs any more. Most of the stuff I read is via RSS and if I am on an actual site, well, I guess I’ve gotten used to the threaded discussion features of social media platforms and writing something in a comment section feels a bit like throwing a bottle out to sea. But as a person who continues, for some ill-advised reason, to keep her own ancient blog on life support, I still love comments. Even the spambots get me briefly excited, especially the weirdly poetic ones (actual excerpt: You can see wells in many fairy tales where you make a wish, push people into them,Womens Paul Hornung Jersey, and consume it for bathing or drinking purposes.)

Anyway, if you’re out there, stop and say hi, will you? Just because … why not. Tell me where you’re spending your online time these days (me: Instagram, Reddit, Facebook, whatever’s still trickling into my Feedly, Google News, a game called Subnautica). Tell me how old your kids are (10 and 12). Tell me what job you’re doing now and whether you enjoy it (freelance writing still, marketing articles, and yes — but I really miss working with people and I keep looking for a good volunteer/part-time-something that will offer more in that department). Tell me about the last book you could not put down (Behind Closed Doors; it wasn’t the best writing in the world but it sure kept me interested). Tell me, are you doing okay? (Yes. I mean: mostly? Mostly yes. Ugh, mostly looks like MOISTLY. I am MOISTLY doing okay, MOIST of the time.)

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Kate
Kate
4 years ago

Hi Linda!

Online: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter when I’m feeling brave, a little snap chat and a lot of super dumb kid apps so I can drink my coffee hot for once.

My son is 3 and my daughter is 17 months. I was fairly sure I was the world’s most amazing parent after raising my son for 2 years. Then his sister came along and served up a nice big glass of humility along with a side of never sleeping again. Her current favorite hobby is drinking puddles. Parasites make you stronger, right?

I worked mostly as an EA and event planner pre-kids. I’ve been home full time since my son was born. When my daughter was about 6 weeks old, my husband asked if I would ever be interested in living abroad. My sleep deprived brain said “well, life with a 22 month old and 1 month old is hard no matter where you are so why not move around the globe” and so now I live in London. We’ve been here a year. Mostly it’s great, other than the nagging jealousy of watching my (wonderful, supportive, etc) husband be promoted up the ranks while I spend every waking moment trying to figure out what my daughter is eating now.

I really loved Lucy Parker’s “Act like it” from a year or so ago. Easy ready, great characters and a lovely view of London.

Mostly I’m ok. Living abroad is so much harder than House Hunters International makes it look and it’s a lot of work to shut down all the FOMO voices but we are making it what we want it to be. In the meantime, I’ll keep eating all the scones.

Kelley O
Kelley O
4 years ago

Hi Linda! I’ve been reading you since Diaryland days, which really dates me, I know!

Online time is spent in my Feedly feeds, Facebook, Imgur and that’s about it. I do spend quite a bit of time watching streaming video. I just finished season 5 of Orange is the New Black.

My kids (who, btw, are both of the feline variety) are 17 and 9. One has mild kidney issues (the older) and the other one is a porker because she insists on eating her own food AND her sister’s food. Brat.

Doing technical quotes for a biotech company, as well as a shitload of data cleanup stemming from multiple migrations from one database to the next with little to not cleanup in between.

I don’t usually put books down, but probably the best one I’ve read lately is Earth Abides by George Stewart. Lucy’s Bones, Sacred Stones & Einstein’s Brain by Harvey Rachlin was really interesting too.

I’m doing pretty well, overall, although I keep feeling like I want something AMAZING to happen, but I’m not sure what that would be. Guess I’ll have to wait and see if/when it does.

Sue Blezow
Sue Blezow
4 years ago

Hi Linda!
I feel like I have been reading your blog forever and I always come back for your awesome writing.

I am on FB (mostly to keep up with my family and community), IG, Reddit and that’s about it.

My kids are 22 and 18 – one a senior in college and the other a freshman. Not to get into it, but I remember someone telling me early on “little kids, little problems, big kids, big problems” and that is really the truth. However, as you probably are getting a small glimpse, there is a whole new world to parenting big kids! I won’t spoil the surprise but buckle up and enjoy the ride!

I returned to a full time job about 2 years ago. I am the office manager for a college mental health counseling center. It’s not always an easy job as I see many students (my own kids’ ages) going through some bad shit but I also love the interaction with that age group.

I am a voracious reader – my favorites over the last month or so: An American Marriage, Bear Town and The Heart’s Invisible Furies

Portia
Portia
4 years ago

I’m here and always happy to see you post!

I don’t spend time anywhere special online – facebook, blogs, advice columns, New York Times.

I have no kids but I’m getting married in June and we’re talking about trying for a baby in the year or so after! eeeeeee!! We’re looking at houses and talking about where the nursery could go, like we’re going to have a real live baby at some point?! It seems implausible but just might happen.

I teach high school English and mostly I love it, but I’m super frustrated today because they have increased student enrollment by 20% over the last year and informed me today it’s “not in the budget” to hire more teachers, so we just have to deal with having more students than we can adequately teach. Ugggh. (Also where did all that extra student tuition go in the budget??)

I loved Broken Harbor by Tana French. A really compelling mystery, beautifully written.

I am mostly pretty great these days, but I am tired. I’m glad spring break is next week. Also, my mom’s birthday is next week, and she died last year, just days after her birthday. So this month is going to be hard. Every month has been hard, though. I miss her a lot. I wish she could be at my wedding. I wish she could meet my hypothetical baby. I wish I could have called her after that frustrating meeting today. Ugggh to that, too.

Wanda
Wanda
4 years ago

Hello…ok, so to dive right in.

Online: some facebook and shopping, your blog and another blog.
Kids: 16 yr old daughter – learning to drive and getting started on college stuff – she’s a junior ths year. Almost 21 yr old son – high funtioning autism- so working on life skills and thinking about possible college.
Work: hosing specialist at a community action agency – administer the housing voucher program – helps low income families with rent. I do like it, at least when we help the people that really need it. The people who are happy to live off the system forever and never try to do better frustrates me.
Book: I haven’t had time to read a book I a while, but I want to.
Doing Ok: Well, let’s say it seems like things are starting to make progress…so working on good. We’ll get there.

I’ve been reading your blog (somewhat consistently) since Ripley was a baby and I think your old blog was Purple is a Fruit or something like that.

Glad you are doing mostly good and hope it continues to improve. And il glad you’ve kept the blog on life support, I enjoy your writing.

Em
Em
4 years ago

Hi!

I have been reading your blog since before Dylan was born. I so enjoy your perspective, humor and honesty!

I am on Instagram a lot, and Facebook a little. I usually only see the first item in my news feed while I check in on my daughter’s school page. I also still follow a few blogs, and lots of entertainment news.

My kids are 4 and 6, and I am a SAHM. I am also a freelance writer, but I write but rarely. I am also a sometime caregiver to my niece and nephew (ages 3 and 4 months).

Do I enjoy it? I have to say, I am pretty burned out. I like not having to be at an office at a certain time, but I really miss adult interaction and using my brain in a constructive way. (Other than, say, figuring out how to get apple sauce off the ceiling.)

That said, I do feel grateful that I have the opportunity to choose this path.

“See What I Have Done” by Sarah Schmidt. Super creepy.

I also really love “The Girl Who Drank the Moon” by Kelly Barnhill, and not just because the author went to my husband’s high school.

I am okay. Just okay. I have my needs met, but my anxiety can sometimes be overwhelming. I am working on it.

aphrodite
aphrodite
4 years ago

Hi! I dislike sharing about myself online because I’m weirdly paranoid about that kind of thing, but I love your writing and always read your posts. :)

Tessie
4 years ago

Thanks for continuing to write; I really miss reading blogs, even though I follow most of my “blogging friends” on Twitter now. I’m really close to done with Facebook. I unfriended a lot of people over political stuff, including a former boyfriend, and even though I KNOW IT’S DUMB, it was actually really sad. I can appreciate that’s it’s not a great blog topic, but it’s really great you’re able to tolerate political differences in your marriage. ANYWAY.

My daughter is right around Riley’s age (almost 12, 6th grade).

I’ve been a CPA for 17 years and I’ve mostly hated it. I bought some bitcoin right after the election and so I’ve been using the money I made to take a short break. It’s hard to swallow that I still have 30ish years left in my career and I probably will spend it doing a job I hate.

I’ve been reading the Red Rising series; it’s really good.

I’m at a lowish point, I’d say. I’ve been reading a lot about how 40 tends to be a low point for happiness in women, and I’m seeing it both in myself and the women around me. I’m not super optimistic about my career (but I still have a long time left to work), my mom just went into a nursing home, I’m definitely aging physically. All normal stuff, I guess. I DO find parenting a lot easier (at the moment).

I love these comments! I’m reading every one!

MB
MB
4 years ago

I love your blog! It’s crazy that you love on the opposite coast to me and yet I feel so in tune with what you write. You have great talents!!

Insagram. Twitter. Snapchat. Facebook. Likely in that order. Try not to be on too much. Such a time suck once you get in!!

Two boys. 15. 13. And a dog. And a hubby.

trying to be thankful each and every day. Some days it’s easier than others.

Take good care.

Laura
Laura
4 years ago

Hi Linda,

I’m on Instagram and Twitter, too much, I’d like to cut down. So why don’t I? I read stuff on Feedly, which is how I keep up with you.

I just read I Am, I Am, I Am, by Maggie O’Farrell, really good.

I have 2 daughters, 16 and 18. It’s been a real adjustment, having one child in college, across the country, not knowing what she’s doing, where she is. She’s happy though, and in the right place for her, so that helps ease my anxiety.

I work at an elementary and middle school, doing IT and helping in the STEM lab. I like the work a lot, and I love that I have the summers off. Now that my kids are older I want to find additional volunteer work, or some sort of Uber-ish job that isn’t Uber, or just driving people around.

I’m thankful that you continue to write in your blog. I really enjoy your writing, your perspective. Thank you.

AL
AL
4 years ago

I’m so grateful you continue to write on this blog because I love your writing. I have read your blog since before your boys were born, which is a crazy amount of time, really. I’m on Facebook and lurk on Instagram and Twitter. My boys are 8 and 10. I just got back from a three hour party at a laser tag/bowling/arcade type place and I’m feeling rather victorious that I didn’t completely lose my shit chaperoning six 10 year old boys. I have a job in such a small industry that I probably shouldn’t specify but it has to do with medical devices. It’s a good job and I like it- I can’t imagine doing anything else but also the thought of doing this until I retire feels wrong somehow?

Things are really pretty good. I have two niggling life problems I wish I could fix and at least one of them is well within my power to change, but will be pretty challenging. I guess I don’t feel like I can complain, really.

With regard to books, I have read such completely crappy books recently that I’m beginning to wonder where all the good books went. My goodreads ratings are a string of single stars. ☹️

Jessica
Jessica
4 years ago

I thought your comments were still closed! You closed them site-wide for awhile, right?

I spend most my time these days in Instagram stories. My kids are 3, 6, & 8. I couldn’t put down An American Marriage and am about to start Call Me By Your Name, which I’m pretty excited about. I don’t work, which is fine with me, but makes me a bit insecure.

I’m fine. Ish. The kind of fine where the thought of a (lovely, long-awaited) spring break trip with the entire family fills you with dread. More time to fight with my spouse and feel beaten down by children! Hooray!

Qtilla
Qtilla
4 years ago

Always glad to see you posting!

Mostly I’m reading my feeds via feedly and Instagram. I’ve been reading quite a bit lately. Strangely I started reading hockey romance novels because Paul Scheer read one and live tweeted it. I swear I don’t typically let Paul Scheer all my decisions. Then I bought one for my bestie and drug her in too. The titles are mortifying.

No kids. I like them, but our life is easy now. Two good jobs, no debts, no stress. It’s hard to consider change. Maybe we’ll get a dog. Don’t parents like it when you compare dog ownership to parenting? Pretty sure they do.

I’ve been trying to get back into writing more, but I’m not making time for it.

It’s funny, I used to blog too and when you were living near Seattle I always felt a little like a neighbor. My blogging neighbor. I know that’s weird, but it is true. I suppose people are all about connecting.

It’s been a joy watching your family grow. Take care.

Keri
Keri
4 years ago

* I’m online less recently but like you, still check what trickles in my Feedly and watch TV/movies on Amazon Prime Video, Netflix and Sundance Now (have you watched “This Close”? Such a fun show that stars people just like me. :)

* My boys are 12, 9 and 6.

* I own a Sign Language Interpreting agency: http://www.truebizasl.com. It’s a lot of work but it’s been a fun ride. Looking forward to forthcoming opportunities.

* Last book I read was a memoir called “Coming Clean” by Kimberly Rae Miller. Gosh, it made me appreciate my OCD mother who is a stickler for clean homes.

* I’m doing great. Looking forward to my summer travel plans with my life partner. In the nearly 4 years we have been together, we have gone to 10 countries and counting. Taiwan is on the agenda for this summer.

Thank you for continuing to blog. I miss the old days when it took me days to catch up reading blogs I follow. It helped me survive the long days of being at home with my littles. :)

Katie
Katie
4 years ago

Hi Linda,

Great post!!

Online time: Most of my time is spent on Instagram. I’ve been doing a photo-a-day challenge (#fmspad via @fatmumslim) every day since June 2013!! It forces me to be creative. I still enjoy Facebook, and although I check Twitter a lot, I don’t tweet much these days. I still read plenty of blogs, also via RSS.

Kids: I don’t have any. Kids were never a priority for me, which is a good thing, considering I seem to be permanently single. And at age 43, that ship has sailed anyway.

Job: Trainee Paediatrician (I live in Australia). I have another 2-3 years of training before I can work as a consultant (I think that’s the equivalent of an attending in the USA), which means being I’m still being sent on different rotations around Sydney and around NSW every 3-6 months. I can’t wait for my life to be my own… But I do enjoy it, mostly. My current rotation is in retrieval medicine, which means I fly around NSW to retrieve sick kids and bring them to the big city hospitals. It’s challenging but rewarding, and very exhausting.

Last book I couldn’t put down: “Every Lie I’ve Ever Told”by Rosie Waterland. She’s an Aussie writer with a very interesting life and a very funny turn of phrase.

How I’m doing: I’m OK, I guess. I’m overweight and unfit, but I’m working on those things. I never really believed I’d still be single at age 43, but here I am. I’m working on that too. Sigh.

Erin
Erin
4 years ago

Hi!

1) Feedly
2) Stepson (22), Daughter (9), Daughter (5)
3) State worker
4) I desperately need to read more books. Scrolling through my IG feed is killing my brain.b
5) Doing ok…overwhelned

Courtney
Courtney
4 years ago

Spending your online time these days: FB, Twitter, Instagram, slack, and a message board.
How old your kids are: 8, 5, due in July (ack!).
What job you’re doing now and whether you enjoy it: communications for the federal government; and yes, generally (this is a new-ish position and I feel SO appreciate and valued here compared to my previous job.
Last book you could not put down: Prodigal Summer, Life After Life.
Are you doing okay? Also mostly. This third baby was … a surprise, and I’m still wrapping my head around it halfway through the pregnancy. Like I can see how the pregnancy will go, and labor too, but then there will be a baby that will just live with us? Forever? That part I can’t quite fathom yet.

Kate
Kate
4 years ago

These days I’m spending [a little too much] time on Reddit and on a silly home design game I stumbled upon. It’s the first game I’ve ever been tempted to spend real, actual money on. But so far I’ve resisted.

I have two boys who are 12 and 8. [I’ve been reading since your 12 was just a suspicious suctopus.] I also have two bonus kids who are 15 and 12. It’s pretty nice having the feel of a big family at times, which I’ve always wanted, and also every other weekend alone with my partner while the kids are with their respective dad/mom.

I’m a CPA. Just started a new job. It’s alright but I’m really having trouble getting motivated to put much effort into it. I don’t know why that is. Am I just kind of lazy? Am I too old to learn new, hard, things? Am I just in a funk? Is this job actually really boring and unfulfilling? Time will tell…

I’ll read anything that’s a mystery and is less than $10 on Amazon, lol. The last one I finished was a Lisa Gardner book – Right Behind You. It was good.

Things are…alright I suppose. The blended family sitch can be challenging. Not because anyone is doing anything “wrong” – it’s just the nature of it. Some weeks I feel like I want to run away from it all and travel the US in a camper van and other weeks I feel quite content. We’ve got too much stuff and too many commitments, not enough sex and I would love to be 50 pounds thinner. Some days I feel talked over, undermined, unimportant; other days I feel lucky to have such a fun, beautiful, dynamic, modern family right here in front of me. Same exact life, just a different perspective – I try to remind myself of that on the bad days.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s that you NEVER know what the future will bring, so I do my best to appreciate this nice little life I’ve carved out for myself (but I also keep pinning pictures of camper vans on Pinterest, because you just never know…).

Michelle
Michelle
4 years ago

1) Instagram/Instastories – best mindless distraction. Anything to avoid the news.
2) My daughter is 8 and my son is 4.
3) Government contractor – I enjoy my work, but long to do something creative, namely with food.
4) I haven’t really been reading, but I’m trying to get back into it. The last book I read and really enjoyed was “Fates and Furies” by Lauren Groff.
5) I’m doing okay. I’m learning to be thankful for what I have. I’m not super rich (or rich for that matter-i’m just barely making it), I’m not doing the most professionally, and I’m not in the most beautiful home. But I am so thankful and grateful for my family, my job, and the roof over my head. I’m learning that I need to stop comparing myself to everyone else and just focus on what I need to do for me and mine and what makes ME happy. It’s really helped me to be more focused and lifted a huge burden off my shoulders.

Hillary
Hillary
4 years ago

Hello! I love that you are still writing here.

Places I go on the Internet: Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. My son (who just turned 6) has gotten into the Wii, so I spend way more time than I ever would have expected looking up how to play Lego Star Wars on YouTube.

I just finished reading the first three books in the Pierce Brown Red Rising series and could not put them down. Now I’m on to Karen Memory, by Elizabeth Bear, which I’m also enjoying.

Job: Freelance marketing. I love it for the most part, but I do also miss working with people from time to time. Or maybe I just miss getting out of the house. :)

Molly
Molly
4 years ago

Howdy! I’ve been spending way too much time on the internet these days, primarily on Ask Metafilter and the varying DIY/Mommy blogs that populate my Feedly. Also Facebook when I want to feel bad about myself vis-a-vis what my friends and family are bragging about online, haha. And not gonna lie, I always get excited when your blog posts pop up on my reader. I just love the humor and honesty that comes through in your writing. Makes my day! Is that weird to say to an internet stranger? I swear it’s meant in a friendly, not creepy stalkery way!
RE: how I’m doing? A bit overwhelmed, but less in a “freaked out” way and more in a “housing gummy bears at 10am and surfing the web instead of doing work” way. Such is life these days!

eleanor_q
eleanor_q
4 years ago

I’ve been reading your blog since I was pregnant with my oldest who will be 10 next week. I can’t believe it’s been that long, it feels much shorter. My other kids are 7 and 4.5.

I’m on FB and Instagram, no Twitter- it was taking up too much time and I’m trying to be on my phone less.

I’m a consultant in the area of school improvement and I really enjoy it.

I’m reading An American Marriage and I would spend all day on the couch curled up with it if I could.

I miss blogs and the daily thrill of seeing who posted something new. Thank you for keeping yours going!

Liz
Liz
4 years ago

Comments sections on blogs have definitely gone the way of the dinosaur. Except for food blogs where you can always count on 400 “looks great!” and 26 “can I replace…” comments. I like when people cross post their blog to FB, because commenting there seems so much more natural. But in any case, I’ve been with you since the early 2000s and you remain one of my favorite writers.

Brooke
4 years ago

Same is true for me/my blog! I still love reading blogs though I rarely comment, and I still keep posting though I often wonder if anyone besides my mom is reading.

In answe to your questions… instagram, FB (though it gives me too much angst), and Bloglovin (though I hate the name).

My kids are 5 1/2 and 3 1/2. I work as a college professor teaching literature and I love/hate it.

I’m reading The Power and I can’t stop thinking about it even when I’m not reading it.

I’m mostly/moistly ok. It’s been seven years since my first daughter died unexpectedly at birth and an uphill battle to get my shit together and keep it together. I’ve cultivated a happy life but I’ll never get to take it for granted. Which is a blessing and a curse, I think.

Miranda
4 years ago

Hi Linda!

I seem to keep falling into the Instagram/Twitter/Facebook loop (over and over, constantly refreshing during my lunch break) and reading whatever still comes through my Feedly.

No kids (unless you count my senior beagle/basset) and I just started a new project management job which is great because it’s giving me all sorts of new challenges and learning opportunities, but also kinda terrible because it’s giving me all sorts of new challenges and learning opportunities. But I’m mostly okay.

I just finished the Plainsong series by Kent Haruf. Loved the first two books, but the last one wasn’t my favorite. Worth a read though!

Kate
Kate
4 years ago

Hi Linda! I’m always looking forward to your posts in my Feedly! I’ve been following you for a while, probably around 5 years or so, and I love your sense of humor!
I spend my time on Instagram, Facebook (I’ll look for you!), I’ll check Feedly once a week and I’ll look at Twitter once a month, or more frequently if I have to complain to a company (that’s why I got a Twitter in the first place back in 2009 – so I could tell McDonald’s there were no sesame seeds on my Big Mac).
My kids are 6 and 3, they love each other and they are very different and I am crazy about them. I work from home doing a job I love for a company that offers no job security, so that part isn’t great.
My last book — LOL — I have no idea when people read. My last book that I finished was Rob Delaney’s book and I only got to read it because I had Jury Duty and there are no kids there. I loved it and recommend it!
Currently feeling: excited for a tattoo I have coming up, annoyed at the snow, proud of my carpenter husband for building us a one-of-a-kind coffee table, amused at my 3-year-old calling them “walker-talkers”.

Mandy S
4 years ago

It’s weird but I feel guilty writing this, like I’m reaching out to an old friend after having too much time go in between visits or something.

Tell me where you’re spending your online time these days: Instagram- I started following two really dumb accounts and they make me laugh really hard. Still into facebook too often but with all the Bad News it’s easier to walk away from it.

Tell me how old your kids are 2 boys. 4 and 8. Sweet spot of parenting I think.

Tell me what job you’re doing now and whether you enjoy it: Library consultant for the state library. I LOVE my job. I basically travel around to libraries all over and help them figure out what they should do to be better. It’s incredible. It doesn’t pay that great but it’s flexible and wonderful.

Tell me about the last book you could not put down In a Dark Dark Wood by Ruth Ware. And I’m reading this non-fiction parenting book called “The Self-Driven Child” that is fascinating, especially for a parenting book.

Tell me, are you doing okay?
If I don’t stop moving, unless it is to sleep, I am doing ok. I’m exhausted.

Barbara
Barbara
4 years ago

Hola Linda!

I’ve been reading your blog since Diaryland days – pre-Riley. I can’t remember how I found you – but at one time I lived in Tacoma, then Gig Harbor, and related to a lot of your love of the PNW yet loathe of the commute. Dunno how you did all that when you had a baby, etc. Bravo.

I’m retired, no children, divorced. I live in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico, and am madly in love with my life. The night I retired I was on the red-eye to San Miguel and have never looked back. After 15 grueling years (living in a bad marriage, my beloved job morphing into a nightmare, battling a life-threatening illness against all odds – and winning!, losing many, many loved ones to death) I am living my dream. I am so very thankful I managed to live long enough to experience this kind of happiness! It was never even on the periphery in my younger years.

My days are my own, I live alone, which I love. I have a lover who is divine. I don’t want a “boyfriend” – that to me connotes someone I must be accountable to. I don’t want to live with anyone, certainly don’t want to remarry. I love my casa, my friends, my dog, my quiet time. At least once a day – usually more – I find myself saying “Thank you!!” out loud as I look around wherever I am.

I was so happy when you resumed blogging not long ago. I love your writing, have loved watching you and your family grow. Have loved growing with you. I also love your family’s love of the PNW (I’ve lived in Oregon as well) and live vicariously sometimes through your outings.

The most interesting thing to me on the comments here is reading people’s favorite last good books, and whether or not they’re happy. My last favorite GREAT book was A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles. it’s perhaps THE best book in my several thousand (surely it must be given my age) books read repertoire. Do, do, DO read it if you’ve not. Swoon.

The best ever to you and yours Darling. You are SO incredibly beautiful in all your pain and glory. I so hope you know that. And whether or not you continue to blog, never, never, ever stop writing.

XOXO,

B

Dawn
Dawn
4 years ago

Hi from Austin. Please don’t stop writing. I love your writing. You are funny and creative and poignant. 💚💜

Cari
Cari
4 years ago

I am so happy that you are here and writing more frequently again. I found your blog when I was pregnant with my now-11-year-old and have enjoyed your writing and your family so much. Thank you for sharing.

I spend a lot of online time on Facebook, not actually posting anything, just scrolling pointlessly, it seems. I like Instagram and the few blogs in my Feedly that are still posting.

I have two daughters who are 11 and 6.

I work as an administrative assistant at a nonprofit organization that trains and places service dogs for people with disabilities. I enjoy it. I’m not particularly challenged by the work, but I’m not sure that I want to be, you know? I also volunteer there by fostering a service dog in training.

I don’t have time to read lately like I used to. Children and dogs and keeping everyone clothed and fed takes up a lot of time. I miss books.

I think I’m doing okay. I have a home and happy, healthy children and a good marriage and a job. I also have a lot of clutter and crap that is starting to feel really heavy and I want to clear everything out. Sometimes I am sad and overwhelmed and then feel guilty for feeling that way because, come on, I have a home and clean water and love and I’m safe, so what reason do I have to be sad? Something, obviously.

Again, thank you for being here and sharing your words with us. I truly appreciate you and your words.

Carrie
Carrie
4 years ago

Hi!
Internet: I spend a lot of time on Instagram, an alarming amount of time on Pinterest, and then a little on Facebook, Twitter, SnapChat. I check me Feedly maybe once a month and feel sad because no one i love blogs anymore, except for YOU and 1-2 others, so i’ve taken to checking your site directly. And i rejoice when you post.
Kids: two step-daughters (18, 20), 1 feline daughter, 1 feline son, 1 canine son. And 1 infertility battle that my husband and i are navigating, sometimes well and sometimes very not well. I desperately want a baby and it feels like a stab to the heart when i see a baby.
Job: I work for a small company (that i shouldn’t disclose) that i love and feel spoiled that i get to have so much fun at work. I’ve lived through hating my job, and life is too short.
Book: i’m addicted to all the books by Rachel Abbott. They’re pretty formulaic murder mysteries after awhile, but i find that comforting.
OK? Sort of. My anxiety is on overdrive all the time now – I have a laundry list of new symptoms that have popped up. I’m struggling to adjust to married life. I hate my body and want to lose 40 pounds, but then i feel sad about it and eat all the desserts i can find. But i love my husband, my family, the pets, my job, our new house…there’s so many positives. So then i also feel like a jerk for having such a hard time. I guess my life has changed more in the past 8 months than ever before, so i should cut myself some slack. But then i would be a reasonable person, and i am far from that.

Jessie
Jessie
4 years ago

Well, I adore you and I have for many years.

I have a 4 year old girl and a 2 year old boy.

I teach ESL to Chinese children online and I actually REALLY FUCKING LOVE IT but the downside is that I have to wake up ass early (3:00 a.m.) to do it. Both because that is when the peak hours are but also because I can really only do something when my kids are asleep in the morning.

The main things I do online are read some dinosaurs like yourself and Amalah and read my workplace community message board and babycenter sometimes, too.

I am not really doing so well, overall. No. For so many reasons really. I wouldn’t even know where to begin to explain it all but I appreciate the space to say something. Thank you.

Jen
Jen
4 years ago

I’ve been reading your blog for so many years, but I’ve probably only commented a handful of times. Thank you for the opportunity / motivation to come out of my online shell and leave a comment today! ;)

My online time these days is mostly Instagram and Googling “news” and reading unhealthy amounts of daily happenings – which i should probably do less of. I’ve been trying very hard to spend less time on Facebook, I find it generally makes me feel blah. I’ve removed it from my phone, but do still sneak on when on my laptop because, well, there are a lot of hours in a work day. I have also been playing Roblox with my kid at night – it’s surprisingly fun and he is totally happy to hang out with me online (as he gets older I find he hangs out with me IRL a bit less). Also Pinterest. I spend a fair amount of time trying to come up with freaking dinner ideas on there…

My kids are 7 and 11.

I’m a Technical Writer. I work from home. I love it, but kind of miss the forced interaction with other people that going into an office used to give me. (Been working from home for almost 6 years now). I’m an introvert, so I do prefer working from home, but do sometimes miss people-ing. Not to mention my husband also works from home, so we see each other A LOT lol. But for the most part the pros definitely outweigh the cons.

I’m actually really sad to say I haven’t made the time for reading in a while. And I really used to love reading. I started re-reading The Dark Tower series recently (huge Stephen King fan) and was totally tearing through them, but got stuck on Song of Susannah which for some reason is just so hard to get through and falls flat in comparison to the rest. So now I’m mostly reading Mo Willems with the 7 year old and Maze Runner with the 11 year old.

As for doing okay – mostly. Not moistly, but mostly. It’s been a hard week, but I’m just trying to live in the now. Mostly.

Thank you Linda for being one of the few places on the internet that I always come back to.

Sara
Sara
4 years ago

Hey!

Been reading since BEFORE Riley!

I’m mostly on Facebook.

Kids are 15 and 13

I’m a nanny. It’s been a rough year leaving a family I was with for 4 years and starting with a new one. Starting to get my feet back under me!

I haven’t been reading anything 😢

I’m alive, and somedays that’s an accomplishment in itself. Things are gonna get better though. Right?

Jessie
Jessie
4 years ago

I’m feeling really weird and guilty for calling you a dinosaur. 🦕 I think you’re amazing. And not old and/or extinct.

Anonymous
Anonymous
4 years ago

I don’t remember how I found your blog, but I’ve been reading it for a while and have always found it compelling and relateable.

I used to spend my internet time reading online news and magazines, plus a few blogs. These days I have less time and it’s more fragmented; I spend more time on Facebook and the like.

I have a 6-month-old. Hence the fragmentation. But he’s the best ever.

I’m home with my son full-time right now. Before that I was a software developer and before that a chemist in academia. I have been lucky enough to have work that was mostly very good, although I’m not sorry about leaving either of my past careers. Someday I’m sure I’ll do something else, although I don’t know exactly what or when.

My reading has, surprisingly, not suffered much in motherhood. I really enjoyed “The Age of Miracles” by Karen Thompson Walker.

I’m doing really well. I’m perpetually sleep-deprived and can’t seem to shake the last ten pounds of baby weight and I’m usually covered in spit-up. But I spend most of my time with the most amazing little person I’ve ever met, and it’s my job to help him be his most amazing self. I can’t ask for much more.

KD
KD
4 years ago

Hi! I’ve been reading faithfully since… 2002? I’m so glad you keep blogging. I don’t do social media, so I’m always sad when a blog shuts down in favor of Facebook or whatever. I hope you’re having a great day! Thanks for the years of reading enjoyment!

Karen
Karen
4 years ago

Hi, Linda. I just went back into the way back machine of my hotmail account and I’ve been emailing with my BFF about you since 2004. July 20, 2004: “Sundry’s on fucking hiatus. Why hast thou forsaken me?!” We love you long time. Please don’t ever stop, but if you do, we understand. But please, don’t.

Tell me where you’re spending your online time these days (me: Reddit, Facebook, a few sites like yours that I still manually check into like PostSecret every Saturday night.)

Tell me how old your kids are (7yo boy). We tried desperately for the 2nd but it didn’t happen and I’ve spent the last 2 years coming to terms with that. And no, we’re not going to foster or adopt and omfg people are so well-meaning with their comments about infertility but for the love just shut up and say I’m sorry if you have to say anything.)

Tell me what job you’re doing now and whether you enjoy it (I spent 10 years – 8 before the boy, 2 after he was born – working in a wonderful job with amazing pay and delicious business travel that just absolutely did nothing to fill me up. Something was just missing. So I quit when he was two and that was five years ago and it feels like yesterday and five decades ago. I spent the next 4.5 years saying at home and trying to figure out who I am and it appears I’m going to try my hand at freelance writing, too. Although I just lost my first and only client after 6 months because I dared to ask for a raise so I could get paid what the work is worth. Oh well. I’ll take the warm months to chill with my kid while he still likes me and go back to the drawing board in the fall after school starts again.)

Tell me about the last book you could not put down (Artemis, the 2nd book by the guy who wrote The Martian. It was fun and entertaining. Said BFF and I are going to the beach in 2 weeks and I’m really happy you asked this question because now, after reading the comments, I have all kinds of books in my Amazon cart. Thank you!)

Tell me, are you doing okay? (Right now, yes. Other times, no. Depression is a moody lover but it’s not going away so we’re figuring out how to coexist.)

Andrea
Andrea
4 years ago

I always love reading the comments people leave on blogs.I’m an avid reader, and have always loved to read biographies, autobiographies, and memoirs. Heck, if the cereal box is the only thing available to read, I read that!

So…time online, FB, Insta, and I follow a bunch of people on Twitter, and Snapchat, but don’t post. I follow 3 blogs, and yours is the only one I occasionally comment on.

My kids are 25,23, and 21. Looking forward to June when my Duck will graduate :)

I work in Early Childhood Education, I get to PLAY. Really believe that play is the way, and that childhood lasts for a long time for a reason.

As mentioned above, I read everything. I just finished re-reading Call the Midwife. A real book, with pages and everything. I really like real books. I do have a Kindle, but I reserve that for reading silly, brain numbing stuff.I’m trolling the comments for good stuff to read.

I am doing OK.

Jamie
Jamie
4 years ago

Comments are fun…because they just are! They put a face on the internet. I’m a longtime reader (I remember when both the boys were born!) – we even met briefly at a BlogHer happy hour in Chicago about a million years ago.

I spend most of my time online attempting to contribute in a meaningful way to conversations on Facebook, and updating my family with photos on Instagram. I haven’t been on my own blog (which was briefly hacked by the Russians, which is probably the most exciting thing that has ever happened to it) in 5 years or so.

In those years, I’ve gotten married and had three kids (the last of which arrived only 5 days ago) and I aspire to return to blogging my thoughts on family life the way you do…but the thought is daunting. As someone who really admires the way you write about most things, I think your writing on relationships is your strongest and most compelling.

As the mother (stay at home, an accidental journey that I need to write about someday), I don’t get a lot of reading done. My greatest wish is to, one day, hit a season of life where I can just sit down for a single hot minute and read something that doesn’t discuss parenting theories.

I’m doing okay – trying to keep afloat in my own dysfunctional way, just like everyone else. Thank you for sticking around – I so enjoy stopping by! Take care.

Lori
Lori
4 years ago

I’ve been reading your blog since before Dylan was born, and actually, you’re the last blog I read now. I don’t use an rss feed now, I check in the old fashioned way because for some reason it stopped telling me when your blog was updated and that’s not acceptable. I also struggled with alcohol and feel your are a kindred spirit.

TinaNZ
TinaNZ
4 years ago

I am a very, very rare commenter and now I feel a bit guilty about that, but usually somebody else has already said what I am thinking, far more lucidly. Another loooong time reader since back in Diaryland days (Workplace, Cat, Dog, naked JB pic!) and as long as you’re writing here I’ll keep reading.

I don’t FB, and occasionally flip though IG and Twitter but it’s too easy to get sucked into spending vast amounts time on those. I think at 58 I’m past feeling comfortable sharing my image and my thoughts, so I just occasionally post a nice photo of a tree or whatever on IG to feel all down with the kids.

My own kids are 22 and 26 in years but still at home which is both a worry and company now that I am partnerless. Even so, as someone said earlier, alone time is a rare and beautiful thing. I’ve just changed jobs; after two years in management I have returned to business analysis which I love, and left a company with a poisonous culture for a (so far) friendly and welcoming new place. With a two-week holiday in Japan coming up as well, I am feeling better and brighter than I have for quite a while.

My most recent un-put-downable was ‘The Hanging Tree’, latest in the Peter Grant series of supernatural police procedurals by Ben Aaronovitch. I love these, in part because of the London setting which makes me nostalgic for the years I spent there in my 20s.

I love your writing, and not to sound creepy, but after all these years you’re a part of my life.

Lauren
Lauren
4 years ago

Hi! I’m so glad you’re still writing, it’s been sad to see all my favorite bloggers slowly stop updating. I’m also a long time follower of your blog and I still get excited when I see new posts!

Online, I find I’m on IG more than FB nowadays. And I have a list of blogs I still check occasionally.

My kids are 5 & 7, one in 1st and one about to start kindergarten in the fall.

I work for a CPA as a tax preparer. I love my job and my coworkers. I work two days a week outside of tax season, but work a lot more during tax season. So to answer your question as to how I’m doing right now: I’m tired. And dreaming about April 18th.

Emily
Emily
4 years ago

Hi, Linda! I’ve been reading you for eons. I found your blog because of your fitness, but I stayed for the exceptional writing. :)

My web design career has transitioned into UX design (actually IMPROVING experiences instead of just making them look pretty), but have you tried working with millennials? Sheesh. That’s how I knew I’d transitioned from Young to Not Young Anymore. After spending all day on a computer, the last thing I want to see when I get home is another screen, but if I’m feeling like poking around online, it’s either Instagram or Feedly. And while Feedly’s a fine little tool, I still miss Goggle Reader.

My husband and I have no kids, but we’ve got two dogs. Some days, I’m afraid our family is incomplete without wee ones, and other days, I’m not sure how I’d juggle it all.

Though it’s been a little ways back, the last book I read that I just could. not. put. down. was The Girl on the Train. I picked it up on a whim and read it in two days flat. I love books like that … that suck you in and hold you hostage until you devour every single word.

Overall, I’m doing okay.

Linda, I’m so glad you never gave up blogging. So many blogs now are a thousand pictures of cute clothes I’ll never buy or gym routines I don’t have an interest in picking up. But blogs — REAL blogs with REAL stories — have always had my heart, and yours has always been a favorite. Thanks for continuing to share with us … and for asking us to stop lurking. Because why not, right? ;)

Trish
Trish
4 years ago

This is such a great community you have Linda! As always your writing lets people open up. I’m mostly on Instagram, Reddit, and Twitter. I’m more of an observer, than an active participant curating “my best shots”. I have a Facebook account but go on there to respond to specific events, if needed.
I have a a 20 year old, who’s figuring out his life…..he believes everyone has all the answers except him. I don’t know why he thinks that. He will figure it out. He was in college and studying astrophysics but has dropped out now. He will come up with the answers soon, as we all end up doing. (I hope).

Haven’t read many books lately….I read every day but lose my focus more and more it seems. I spend a lot of time reading articles on Longform lately.

I am ok….always will be…I’ve learned that about myself in the last few years. It takes faith, hope, words, love, friends, connection – sometimes I have all of those things and sometimes I don’t. And it’s still all ok. Thank you for sharing, always. Your words are powerful, open, and important to me Linda!

Kate
Kate
4 years ago

Hi Linda!

online time: Instagram, FB, Feedly…but mostly reading things relating to skincare: toner, serums, moisturizers, you get the gist.

kids: 2 boys, 5.5 and 2.5yo.

job: managing people, responding to email.

book: Manhattan Beach.

you ok?: I agree with MOSTLY.

but THANK YOU for asking. I am glad you are also a mostly yes on this one too.

J
J
4 years ago

Hi hi,

I’ve been following your blog since before your first was born; can’t recall how I ended up here but I remember staying up all night in college, reading your back blogs and then spying on you twice a week or so for new content.

I’m mostly online to see what’s hot on Reddit, what FB is spamming, and browsing my subs on YouTube.

I don’t have any kids! The job looks difficult and honestly, I love having the time, money, and energy to do the things I want to do with my friends and family. The only time I wish I had a kid is when I want to buy something adorable but too childish for me to pull off. Or when I watch my friends’ kids turn into little people and they’re all so amazing and weird and cute and funny.

I call myself a freelance teacher and I enjoy what I do and I feel a sense of satisfaction and purpose. It’s nice to get to choose my hours, what I want to be paid, and the clients I’ll be working with and in what conditions. I’m fortunate to have this luxury with my husband’s support; this wouldn’t work without him.

Overall, I’m fortunate and doing well enough and generally happy (knocks on wood). Working on keeping myself healthy and strong so I can keep some serious health conditions at bay – I had to take an absence from work for a while to deal with health stuff so I’m glad I’m better and back into the swing of things.

Been trying to read The Devil in White City but can’t seem to get into it.I’ve enjoyed When Smoke Gets into Your Eyes and Other Lessons from the Crematory and Tuck Everlasting (a reread to work with a student).

I hope you’re doing OK; I enjoy your blog and I hope it’s doing for you whatever you need it to do. Thank you for sharing all of your private and public joys and struggles and your everydayness; you are remarkably human. Hug hug

Kristin H
Kristin H
4 years ago

Hello! I’ve been following your blog since it was Purple is a Fruit. My kids are now 13 and 11. It’s interesting (and hard) to watch my daughter (the 13 year old) create her own life, apart from me. My 11-yo boy is still a hugger and a snuggler.

My work is for a business that my brother and I own together. Working with family is not for the faint of heart, but it’s been a good job for me and I’ll probably never leave. I didn’t start here intending to stay for my whole working career, but that’s how it’s turning out.

Manhattan Beach and Young Jane Young were both novels that I didn’t want to end. I wish I had them both to read all over again. So, so good.

I’m happy and healthy and so is my family, so I really couldn’t ask for much more. Well, except maybe for a little gun control. We have three guns but my daughter and I are driving to Washington DC to march on the 24th.

That’s all that’s going on with me! I truly and sincerely hope you are well.

Mary Clare
Mary Clare
4 years ago

I peruse travel sites on-line (wander lust!) and bop around a few parenting/personal blogs. Even though my kids are no longer babies I still like (need) the community of other parents.

My girls are 9 and 7. I’m liking this stage past toddlerhood and not yet teens. They still like to read books aloud with me and now to me. I’ll take it!

My job is an aquatic ecologist with a non-profit environmental organization. In the winter I’m a report writer and budget person (yay grants!) and in the summer I’m sticking my feet in water all over PA. Working full time (and parenting and trying to find time w/ husband/friends and for myself) really kicks my ass most weeks.

I’m reading the Alice Network (Quinn) and the Penderwicks (Birdsall). Alice Network is a suspenseful story of women in WW1 and WW2 and part spy novel. Penderwicks is a great middle elementary kids book about adventurous family of girls, a la Little Women in modern times.

Mostly pretty good here. I enjoy my life when I take time to look around and stop worrying about the getting it all done/ comparing my stuff to others.

ncrc
4 years ago

PSG M: Yes! the most difficult things to deal with in my pregnancy were my anxiety and gestational diabetes – mostly because I was really aware of all the research around how much I would be damaging my baby from cortisol and how he’d be more at risk of obesity/diabetes etc.