Writing this blog for more than two years has been a labor of love, with both parts of that phrase holding equal weight. There have been weeks when it was nothing but labor – wondering what topic I could possibly write about, then struggling to find the words to form a post. At other times, it’s been terribly rewarding – when people say they appreciate my posts, say they’ve been inspired by me, or when I just enjoy sharing an experience I’ve had. But now, I’m going to be putting this blog to bed.
My upcoming shift in lifestyle is the main impetus behind this decision. In the past few months, I haven’t been updating this blog nearly as often as I once was. I’ve only been posting once a week at best and missed a number of weeks altogether. With my due date tomorrow, I’ve had a lot of other priorities. Unfortunately, after our lovely son arrives, I’m going to be even more pressed for time.
In addition, my basic activities will be changing. I’ll still be gardening throughout the summer, but my chances to sit down and write about what I’ve learned will be few. My biking will be taking even more of a hit. Due to a combination of weather, needed bike repair, busyness, and the awkwardness of being late into my third trimester, I haven’t been outside on my bike since the Tour de Cookie a month and a half ago. I didn’t mean for it to be the last outdoor bike ride of my pregnancy, but it just turned out that way. Once I give birth, I can’t get back on the bike for at least six weeks and even then, my cycling will be limited. I can’t carry my son via a trailer or bike seat until next spring, so I’ll probably just be doing short spins around the neighborhood. Lastly, my volunteer time is going to be crunched. I’m not planning any rides this year like I have in the past; I’ll be happy if I can fit in one meeting a month.
But beyond the baby, I’m also running out of posts to write. It’s not like I’m completely out of things to say about these topics, but I’d like to develop some into more substantial essays for a magazine article or book. With others, I don’t want to be repetitive – there’s only so much I can say about biking the Millenium Trail or starting seeds. While I wish I could write about every ride in a hilariously stream-of-consciousness manner like Tales from the Sharrows (who himself isn’t actually doing that anymore), I’m just not that naturally trippy.
None of this is to say that I won’t miss the blog. I started it with three motives – to raise money for the Climate Ride, to be an advocate for the issues I’m passionate about, and to bring discipline to my writing. While I think I miserably failed at the first – I don’t think I earned an extra dime as a result – I hope I’ve been at least moderately successful at the other two. By framing my favorite hobbies as things that anyone can do, I hope my writing has inspired people to try gardening or biking. Honestly, I don’t know exactly what effect I’ve had on my audience, but I hope it’s been positive. The biggest effect I’ve seen is on my own writing. This blog is probably the most ambitious writing project I’ve even taken on, including my graduate thesis. Now, while my graduate thesis required months of research and a hair-tearing amount of editing, it ended up being just under 60 pages. In contrast, this blog has more than 200 posts totaling hundreds of pages. Also, unlike a single project with a deadline, it required constant commitment. Most importantly, it demanded this care and feeding while I have a writing-heavy full-time job that I love. All of this required me to develop a level of discipline in regards to writing thoughtfully that I’m very grateful for.
With all of that in mind, I say goodbye to this blog and to my readers. I certainly won’t stop writing – I hope to do some freelancing for local and specialty magazines/blogs – but it will be fundamentally different.
My regular readership is very small, but I still appreciate every single one of you and your comments, even when it took me weeks to respond. I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading and that your future involves a good deal of enjoyable bicycling and sustainable, delicious food.