About Blog: Capturing a Blogger's Life (Where Showing and Doing Meet);

August 10, 2011

Warning: Text Heavy & Get Good After The Jump! 

It was last Saturday night. It was seven o’clock as I looked down at my phone, which was buzzing in my purse. It was Barnhill. “You can head on over!!!” the text read. I smiled, feeling so excited about tonight and what we are all about to do. We were going off with about ten of our really good friends to the local water park after hours. With luck and good connections we have managed to get the whole water park to ourselves at night after it closed to the public. I was so excited. I had packed my camera intent on capturing the night. This would be the last time we would all hang out before we went off to college (and I had failed miserably at catching all of our hang outs since the beginning of summer).

Whenever we all get together, nights are magical and I was so determined to capture the magic right on my point and shoot to share with the blog world. I yelled at Jenny, “We can go!” and I hopped into her little blue car with the dent in the back. I snapped a happy photo of myself sitting in the car, warming up my camera and test driving everything. I thought to myself, “This night just had to be captured on film…because my blog readers would love it. They deserve to get a sneak peak into all the fun. These memories will be so amazing to share on the blog.” I immediately began picturing the night, the fun and crazy pictures I would take and quickly began writing the post in my head.

Then, I stopped.

What the hell was I doing? Was I really planning out my entire night according to what would be fun to share on my blog? Were these pictures for me…or my readers?

Every blogger has a story to be told, that is certain. Sometimes a blog just starts out as a way to vent or share your feelings. Maybe it’s a place to keep family updated or to showcase your too-cute-to-not-share daily outfits. Whatever your blog is, was, and has become I feel like almost every blogger can relate to this article in one way or another. As a blogger, you want to make your blog reflect your personality, style, likes and dislikes. You want your posts to be entertaining, witty, and captivating. While there is nothing wrong with that at all, do you ever find yourself just showing the glamorous parts of your life? I think every blogger has done that at one point or another. I know I do. I try to be honest with readers. I try to share what’s going on in my life, but it’s just human nature to shy away from the boring, sticky reality and shine the light on happier, more stylized parts of our lives.

Blogs are the domain in which we share our life with the public. The catch is that we get to control the content and what is shared. We get to pick our topics, highlight and feature anything we want, unlike in real life. I’m not saying every blogger omits 99% percent of their life or who they or anything like that. In fact, I believe blogs are where bloggers share the best points of who they are. They share their happiness, inspiration, creativity, passion, and interests with the world. I am saying that no blogger wants to share the crappy stuff. No one wants to dedicate whole posts to how shitty our day jobs are, how annoying family members can be, how many hours we spend doing mundane and boring ‘real life’ activities like paying the bills, cleaning the house, or mowing the yard. Everyone does it though. Sometimes it’s so easy to get caught up in ‘blog life’ and forget that every blogger also has a real one to deal with too.

Sometimes I peruse blogs and see so many happy, creative, talented, and adventurous women sharing their lives and I wonder why mine isn’t as glossy, happy, creative, or fulfilled. These lovely women come off like they have pretty perfect lives (unintentionally of course) and sometimes it’s defeating. Sometimes I feel boring and lackluster in comparison. Sometimes I feel like the women who share their blogs just traipse around in cute outfits, making yummy recipes, shooting gorgeous pictures of their travels and their perfect little families, painting and creating, and being endlessly happy all day long while squeezing in a DIY or two. It’s hard not to feel like somewhat of a failure or just a wee bit inadequate in comparison at times. Lately, I find myself wishing my life were more interesting just for the sake of sharing.

I was sitting with my good friend Callie one day. We were visiting her extended family at an old, but really gorgeous farm house. I was like, “why can’t I live out in the country? I could call my little blog Simple Little Dreams or something. I could grow my own food and take all my fashion shots against the gorgeous scenery. Bloggers would eat that right up!” Later, we were discussing a girl who had gone to our high school but chose to move away. She wanted to be a model, so she left to pursue that. After a six month hiatus, it turned out she had went to Japan, modeled for a designer campaign, walked several runway shows, had gorgeous model friends and an even more gorgeous model boyfriend, and had got to live the past year in Tokyo. I remarked to Callie, “If she would’ve started a blog, her blog could’ve made a killing! You know how many people would read that shit? It’s so freaking adventurous and interesting!” Her pictures really did inspire me, however, Callie rolled her eyes. “Ashlee, you can’t live your life just for the sole purpose of blogging about it,” she laughed. Then hit me. I can’t live my whole life just for the sake of blogging about it. I have to live my life for myself and focus on what I really want, versus what’s interesting or blog-worthy. It’s all too easy to feel/get blog-competitive.

You just have to realize that it’s always going to seem like there is someone out there living a perfect life. It’s easy to look upon gorgeous and talented women and feel bad about not doing enough yourself. You have to realize that they come off this way because they are putting their best foot forward on their blog (just like you do), but in reality they go through all the similar struggles. Every single human being must contend with real life. You are as happy, as you decide to be. You must realize, also, that you are a gorgeous and talented somebody as well. Bloggers almost feel like celebrities to me at times. I look up to these women, but they are intangible to me. I read about their lives, but I don’t know them. Danielle’s post really inspired me.

This realization that I can wear a cute outfit and it’s not obligated that I document it, I can go out with my friends, have an amazing time and not divulge the details, I can eat a yummy cupcake or visit an interesting space and not take a picture of it really rocked my world for a few moments as it sunk it. This notion that I really can control the content was like a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. Just because I have a moment of inspiration or do something incredibly fun, doesn’t mean I’m obligated to share (though most of the time I want to anyways). Would I rather be enjoying my cupcake or photographing it through every bite? Wouldn’t it be cooler to make some amazing memories in my new dress instead of going home to photograph it?

Blogging can feel demanding. It is quite a job to continually commit yourself to live an inspiring and creative life that you deem worth sharing and showing off to the world and another commitment to making time to share it. Blogging does take planning and time, but I believe everyone deserves a break from it all. No one wants to admit the reason they haven’t posted in a week is because they haven’t been doing anything remotely interesting. Even the fashion blogger has her day in sweats, for example.

Jenny came out to the car, got in, and as the car started I pawed through my tote bag making sure I had everything. I wanted to show off my friends, the beautiful scenery, the magical night of crazy adventure and teenagerdom, and my cute floral swim suit, but I resisted. Slowly, I put the camera down.

As bloggers we sometimes reach the point where showing and doing conflict. Sure, I could show the blog world my crazy fun night. I could show them memories and time spent with my friends. I could show all day long, but what I couldn't do is really live it up that night. Instead of being the one sliding belly first down a towering slide, I would be waiting at the bottom capturing pictures of my friends sliding in belly first making the craziest of faces. I wouldn’t be doing or experiencing first hand the excitement. I wouldn’t be making the memories for myself. I wouldn’t be getting my feet wet, I’d be sidelined. I wanted to be the one laughing, going down slides, playing chicken, and splashing my friends and really enjoying my last night with my friends…not the girl with the camera.

So, I put up my camera, so excited about experiencing the night to its fullest and only a little sad about not capturing it in a more tangible way as we sped down that old familiar back road for the last time for a long time, ready to meet our friends.

Have you ever struggled with blog competition, the fine line between showing and doing, etc? I'd truly appreciate some input, thoughts, and comments!

You Might Also Like


  1. oh man, AMEN! I've had the same exact feelings. I had the realization a while ago...where I was standing there, taking pictures and I thought-why the heck am I behind the camera trying to capture the moments when I should be living them!? So every now and then I put the camera down. But it's only about 30% of the time. The rest of the time...my friends just know the camera comes along :)
    Good insights! and cute blog, keep it up!

  2. I read a blog post once by agirlandaboy where she talked about similar things, like that it takes 13 tries to get the perfect picture of jumping on a bed in a perfect outfit, but on a blog you only see the final shiny one.

    I really enjoyed this post :)


I value each and every comment. Thank you for taking some time out of your day to leave one!


Arkansas Women Bloggers



Everything (content and copy) is the property of Ashlee and/or DearieLovie unless otherwise linked or noted. If you see something belonging to you without proper documentation, email me and I will be happy to resolve the issue. I encourage you to actively share any part of Dearie Lovie, just remember to provide proper links and credit when and where appropriate. Copyright 2011-2016.