As I sat in my office the other day, I glanced at the terracotta pot, the one that stays outside all summer and that I bring to work each September, and saw the first fuzzy leaves of Gloxinia, a plant that has called this pot home for several years.
It’s a funny thing, this Gloxinia. At the end of the growing season, after all of the leaves and stems have withered away, I put it in an out of the way place. When I remember, I give it some water – and then, thanks to its inner timepiece, it begins to emerge from its winter dormancy – and I am always in awe. While I go about my life and career, this plant is doing its own thing – dormant and alive, right under my nose, and when I least expect it, Gloxinia reminds me that it’s still here.
Like a garden, a blog needs its own share of TLC. There’s watering (to nurture it along), weeding (to keep out the spam), some deadheading (to keep it fresh), and a fair amount of manure (to encourage growth). The real reward comes when blooms appear – as flowers, vegetables, or readers. This week, Nitty Gritty Dirt Man has seen a bountiful harvest.
My usual routine in the garden is to take a walk, check on what’s growing, what needs trimming, what needs weeding – that sort of thing. I keep a similar routine for the blog, where I try to post at least two times a week, usually on Sundays and Wednesdays. The structure helps keep me focused and organized.
I also check on the stats that WordPress tracks – mostly out of curiosity to gauge what readers seem to like and when their interest peaks and fades.
That was the case on Monday morning when I checked the stats from Sunday’s Super Bowl post. There were maybe 50 hits on Sunday night and one on Monday morning. That same afternoon, I checked in again, but the visitors’ number had surged to well over 200. Surely, I thought, there had to be a problem. I had never, ever had that many hits. Was there a glitch? A prank? A virus?
Have you ever had one of those senior posting moments? You know, the kind where you desperately need something to post about but the posting angel is on hiatus — and since it’s winter, you can’t even get by with a random flower photo?
Well, that was my state of mind for the past few days — until the posting angel arrived in the form of Jane from Tidy Gardens, who presented me with the “Versatile Blogger Award.” I’m not sure of the criteria Jane used, since I’ve never considered myself versatile, but I am very humbled and flattered to be on her list of versatile bloggers — although she has also informed me there are rules that I must follow as a recipient of this award.
But before I get into that, I do owe Jane many thanks. Her site is one that I return to quite often — usually to bring a smile to my face. It’s strange to have struck up a friendship of sorts with someone I’ve never met, but I do appreciate her humor (and the fact that she gets mine). What I especially enjoy about her posts or her comments here, is that when I read her words, I can hear her voice — although, I have never actually heard it. I encourage everyone to check out her site. You’ll see what I mean.
Now for the rules.