I have been curious about other people and their discovery of blogging in general. I know that blogging is considered a very healthy thing to do by the American Psychiatric Association, which should probably surprise absolutely no one who enjoys doing it and which, therefore, sure seems to include those many bloggers I visit and who drop by here. I have always pretty much tried to keep my blog posts “above board”, as it were, which is a dreadful way of saying I have tried to keep it somewhat trade-specific. I always thought there was a dearth of information about how things actually get done out there when people are ripping and tearing up yards and making new ones. I base this on my own experience as a landscaper. Thus, I will always have a bias towards “what we do” sorts of things, and in the detail some folks really tend to appreciate. I hope it is obvious to this point, I speak from the position as a professional – which I have been for long years.
But the blogging thing, which really has caught my fancy in a major way, is a fascinating thing to me. I can actually do whatever I want in here! Aye, and therein lies a small “rub”, I guess. There is a beckoning reality taking a swing at me, asking to augment all this fun with forming some sort of financial interest.
I’ ve plied away in here somewhat ignorant of what’s been going on around me. This confession is not one I am proud of, frankly, but it mirrors my beginnings. When I began the blog, it was at the insistence of Annette, my Israeli friend I had met in some political forum and who I hit it off with. She adored my writing right away and she hired me to write for her as a sort of second job, beginning this entire episode. I spoke of the work I did often and she – a more than active blogger and Webmistress – was sort of enthralled with these stories about things like 5 ton boulder placements, my work installing irrigation and planting at the Portland Chinese Garden, running a business and my daughter’s progress. We connected on any number of levels and I will say right here and now she is the most knowledgeable person I know who plies her trade on the Internet. It makes seeing her angst over her sometimes-misbehaving 6 year old a guilty refreshment and it reminds me of everyone’s commonality in general. I offer all the sage advice I can muster, lol. After all, I actually have been there, ya know.
Anyways, Annette runs TheCatSite.com, which has 23,000 members and is a bustling, happy board chock full of cat lovers. She also has blogs and sites directly involved with how to construct blogs and websites. She is also in my Blogroll under IsraeliMom, for a more normal and human look. In fact, Annette has about 300 different sites and blogs. I was impressed speaking to someone with that sort of Internet swag. Her knowledge of online matters was informative and we exchanged all sorts of ideas about doing things together – which we have. She has also, in her forum visits to Webmaster Boards, hooked me up with employment for writing for other webmasters who also needed writing. In short, Annette has been a mentor. I think we all can apply this tag to someone among us – or, if not, we can definitely attribute good advice and directional opinion to someone outside ourselves.
My question, aside from pimping my new shopping blog attempts in the paragraph below, relates to mentoring and who helped us most in getting to where we are now. I can list a large number of blogs which I used for mentoring purposes – all of which we already know – the wonderful Philip’s blog about San Fransisco and his travels, Frances’ gorgeous Fairegarden, Barbee’s light human touch – many, many others who have been instructive about what we like seeing most – heartfelt feelings for others and for floral magnificence, good stories to read and genuine love of gardening, landscaping and all the things which so please us about dirt. Naturally, I use the Bibilcal Dirt in this sense. 🙂
So who is/was your mentor? Have you thanked them? Where did they drop you off, or are you still learning from them? I know I actually am, still, learning from Annette. In fact, if I weren’t so lazy and unfocused in general, I’d probably be visiting her in some gorgeous garden like Haifa right now with all my excess cash had I kept up with her learnin’ me. Anyway, let me dedicate this next paragraph to her – I need a smile.
So Annette has been on me for some time to try and make money off this blog – or others. I have begun this recently, starting up a garden tools blog, Landscape and Garden Tools, as well as this one, Tools-Hub – very new at the moment and less landscape oriented – describing tools I deem fit for gardener’s arsenals and some which might surprise with their approrpiateness for gardening. I remember my own discovery of water timers for hoses, for example – at least one of which I carried on a routine basis during construction projects. They were fabulous for predictable intervals of dust suppression on dry windy days as well as handy during sodding, planting or gardening at numerous other times, especially where we did not install irrigation systems. In fact, for these homeowners, I would simply leave a timer behind, as a thank you gift. I’ll mention these new blogs of mine more than once in the future, without a doubt, in hopes that it will generate some traffic and sales where appropriate. I have hooked into Amazon.com for this particular site, but I will be expanding it into other bases, perhaps even into shipping from suppliers themselves. A look at my Blogroll will see them there as well. Hopefully, I will augment strict sales pitches with some fun and interesting writing such as this bit on The History of The Shovel. It is another excuse to write, after all.
I mean, I’ll keep trying to do this, have no fear –
I’m sure some sucker in Louisville might want a nice garden at some point.