I blog, therefore I am?

So its another year of jonandnic.com too. This little of hobby of mine, after only about 7 years, is finally starting to feel like it has a bit of value. I’m not in a terribly literary mood today, but I’m stalling on delivering the rest of the “big changes for 2008” news until it gets ironed out a bit, so here’s some ramblings around this here website of ours…

Last month 42% of the visitors to jonandnic.com came from the States, 33% from Canada, 13% from Europe, 3% from Australia, and my parents holding 1.08% from Asia (since Chad and Nicole are home in the States for a year.) A lot of other regions provided enough hits to make it on the map, but not enough to be statistically significant. Still we’re very glad you dropped by. There’s just a few parts of Africa there that aren’t visiting… but they can probably be excused for that until we get some more OLPCs over there!

We average about 100 visits a day, and 56% of you are new visitors (or got a new computer) since August.
Most of you stay for just under 2 minutes, and visit 1.5 pages per visit. Which, to be honest, is about how much time I spend on any given site.

Not that’d I’d ever be able to go the dooce route, and make a living on blogging, but I would be interested in hearing from you all, if you have any thoughts:
Why do you visit? What parts of the site do you like/find interesting? For those of you who lurk, and don’t comment, why not? Any suggestions on what we could change/update to make this site more interesting or worth visiting?

As for why this blog is here… well, I found this quote while reading a book called “North to the Orient,” by a very old-school blogger, which I thought perfectly summed up the answer to that question…

What, then, is this collection of chapters? How to explain it? Why did I write it? There is, of course, always the personal satisfaction of writing down one’s own experiences so they may be saved, caught and pinned under glass, hoarded against the winter of forgetfulness. Time has been cheated a little, at least in one’s own life, and a personal trivial immortality of an old self assured.

And there is another personal satisfaction: that of the people who like to recount their adventures, the diary-keepers, the story-tellers, the letter-writers, a strange race of people who feel half-cheated of an experience unless it is retold. It does not really exist until it is put into words. As though a little doubting or dull, they could not see it until it is repeated. For, paradoxically enough, the more unreal an experiences becomes — translated from real action into unreal words, dead symbols for life itself — the more vivid it grow. Not only does it seem more vivid, but its essential core becomes clearer. One says excitedly to an audience, “Do you see — I can’t tell you how strange it was — we all of us felt…” although actually, at the time of the incident, one was not conscious of such a feeling, and only became so in the retelling. It is as inexplicable as looking all afternoon at a gray stone on a beach, and not realizing, until one tries to put it on canvas, that it is, in reality, bright blue.

Anne Morrow Lindberg, 1935

If I only we had adventures like hers to write about!

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9 thoughts on “I blog, therefore I am?

  1. Hi,
    You don’t know me, and I don’t know you, but I found your blog from a link on Melissa Hambleton’s blog many moons ago. I was a student at Western with Melissa, and was exploring her blog when I came upon yours.
    I’ve been reading your blog faithfully ever since. For me, it’s like reading a novel, or watching a TV series. It has well-developed plots, captivating characters, and memorable pictures. Most of all, your prose is what gets me hooked. Your stories, thoughts, and insights into the world are intelligent, thought-provoking, hilarious, and poignant all at once. The suspense that has been created about what’s to come in 2008 is fantastically intriguing.
    If I were to categorize your posts, I would say that my favourites are the ones about Benjamin (he’s just so cute – how could he not be the favourite?), comparing and contrasting Canada and the U.S. (many laughs due to the guy who suggested that you “stole” a job from an American) and comparing and contrasting Mac vs. PC.
    I don’t read your techie blog. I looked at it once and it was waaaay over my head.
    I don’t post because I don’t know you, and so it’s not really relevant. But since you asked, I made a special exception for today. Thank you for providing such well-written and enjoyable reading.

  2. Wow! That was wonderful feedback! We’re so glad that our lives our interesting enough to keep you visiting — hopefully we’re able to keep things from getting too boring as we settled into our adulthood!
    Melissa and her husband Brian are awesome people, so any friend of theirs is welcome in our life too. Thanks so much for reading and for your kind response.

  3. Hi Jon and Nic,
    Your Mom and Dad told me about your blog last year after your Grandma’s funeral, when we were all at Ray’s house and you had called to tell them that Nic was in labour. They told us there would be pictures and info about the new baby and I have been reading about your family ever since! You and my daughter Becky are only 2 months apart in age, and your Mom and I are less than 1 month in age difference,(and very close when we were growing up on the 16th concession) so reading about you seems to keep me closer to both her and to your Grandma. I quite often share some of your info with my Mom…your Grandma’s sister and your Great Auntie Lil. Family members are all over the world these days and we are so fortunate to have computers to keep connected, and I guess that is the biggest reason I check into your site everyday.
    What keeps me coming back is your talent for writing and your insight into so many different subjects as well as the pictures and little movies that have documented so well, Benjamin’s first year. Becky’s little boy, Cole will be 3 in February and she is expecting her second child in May.Unlike you, her ultrasound wasn’t able to provide whether she’s carrying a boy or a girl….the baby’s legs wre tightly closed!!! We will rejoice in seeing whoever it turns out to be and can hardly wait to greet our 4th grandchild! I have pictures of you and Becky in your baby seats when you were little, and Larry and I were at your wedding, so I love being able to share the ups and downs of your daily life through your blog.2008 sounds like it will be another exciting year, and I look forward to watching it all unfold through your words and pictures! Much love to you all from your 2nd cousin Sandra from Whalen Corners, ON.

  4. Wow that’s so cool how much we have in common with Becky — and I don’t think I’ve ever even met her. Thanks for reading, it’s great when the web connects people!

  5. I have been keeping an “eye on you” through the lens of your blog for almost a year and a half. I think that it is the writing that keeps me coming back; you have a great way with words. We share careers, so I feel a connection there as well. My wife and I miss you and Nicole, not that we were ever really close, but we did see you often and even worked together through our ministry life. I also find your immigrants perspective interesting, if readers thinks that I am the guy that suggested you stole and American’s job, then some of your readers need to better understand sarcasm. I have worked with several of your fellow countrymen over the last 15 years and have enjoyed the friendly banter of which country is better with all of them.

    May the Lord bless you and keep you as you plan for a Wise future

  6. Paul actually started keeping an “eye on” me during my very first week in New York. I had no cash and we didn’t have banking figured out yet, so I’d been eating Chunky Soup and KD all week. One night I got sick of it, and decided to splurge a little and go out to Friendly’s. I called Nic, back home in Canada, on my cell phone while I waited for my food. Paul happened to be at the restaurant and remembers having seen me…

    Why he would remember that is beyond me. Perhaps I looked lonely and forlorn. Perhaps I looked a little scared to be in a strange new country all by myself. Perhaps I picked my nose in public and that image is stuck in his brain… I don’t remember the event much myself.

    At any rate, there aren’t many readers of this blog who are likely to understand my life in New York as well as Paul. We share the same kind of career, and at the same time share the same love for ministry. Paul is the “behind-the-scenes” guy that gets things done around his church without being quite as noisy or pushy about it as i do. I probably have a thing or two to learn from him.

    Glad we’ve managed to keep you coming back to the website, Paul. You and your family are a real blessing. I hope Kerio isn’t giving you too much of a hard time 😉

    By the way, the comments on this post have been very interesting! I think I’ll keep it at the top of the page for another day or two to see who else is out there. So speak up! We’d love to hear from you!

  7. Hi, Sorry for the garbage for the name and e-mail. I visit your site periodically as I knew you from a previous church which it seems you too have left. I left the church before you but worked with Nicole while I was there. You guys are great and as you know you don’t want to influence people that still may be attending but we had some hurts that needed to be dealt with so we quietly left but you guys are great people so I periodically visit here to keep up on what’s going on in your lives.

    One question……..I haven’t read in depth but it seems you guys have found a new church. I would love to hear more about it as we are still searching…….

  8. Hi anonymous. Pretty sure I know who you are and what church you’re talking about…

    Unfortunately, no church is perfect, so there’s bound to be some struggles at some point, no matter what congregation you call your own. Christians are still human!

    We’ve landed at Grace Fellowship in Latham, for the time being. There are a few others who attended our previous church now going to Grace as well. It has much of the energy of where we went before, its similarily opposed to legalism, and also decidedly non-denominational.

    The are very organized and very friendly, and it was a tremendously soft and welcoming place for us to crash land. Although we miss our old church a lot, and although we know Grace is likely to have its own imperfections, we’re enjoying our new home very much.

    Feel free to drop us a line in person, or via e-mail if you have other questions. Its important to us that everyone knows how much we love our previous church, and all the people there. We’re very much supporters of that congregation — we’re just attending somewhere else.

  9. I would be very surpried if you know who I am…..except that you probably have a way of tracking where I log in from or something equally as nifty as that 🙂

    Thank you for the info. We attended Grace this past Christmas and liked it and I have been listening to their podcasts. I also know many of the old [church] crew that attend. You are just one more testimony to the fact that we need to seriously give Grace a try.

    Thank you!

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