[pa-steesh] noun 1. a literary, musical, or artistic piece consisting wholly or chiefly of motifs or techniques borrowed from one or more sources.
2. an incongruous combination of materials, forms, motifs, etc., taken from different sources; hodgepodge.
I've taken advantage of having the week off to do some much needed housekeeping on the blog.
Although I haven't had much time for writing, I have really been thinking a lot about what I wanted to do with @ Home in the World. I started writing as a way to capture some of the stories from our adventures adopting two Russian boys. Overly optimistic that we'd be able to do more than just armchair traveling even after we became parents, I gave it the subtitle "International Adoption and Other Travels."
For various reasons, we haven't been able to do much travelling and the boys are getting to be the age when many blogging parents start to talk about their stories becoming their own. They have been with us nearly 8 and 6 years and most of the Russia stories have been told. Certainly there's more to tell about our experiences as a special needs family, something we're really just starting to get a handle on, but in a lot of ways this blog has been more about my (long) adjustment to parenthood.
Personally, and professionally, I'm in a pretty good place. As a parent, I'm in that respite place before adolescence. There's still quite a bit of road ahead, but this might be the section that is better paved, and less hilly.
Writing is the only thing that is really suffering right now. I've wanted to be a writer since I was in the fifth grade, but it has always been last on the list. With so much going on right now, it's really a matter of finding a topic that I'm excited enough to spend the time and energy on.
Looking back, I really feel like I did some of my better writing when taking on social perceptions of motherhood and parenting, politics, and in other venues, education. I'm going to try to get back to that, as time allows. I have certainly written about adoption, but it as been mostly about our experiences and only occasionally on the politics surrounding the topic, as I find myself too often at odds with people's notions of what should be offensive to me.
During the vacation week, I spent some time going through my blog rolls, updating sites that have changed names or addresses, and (sadly) dropping those who have stopped publishing altogether. There were a lot of changes to make.
For a time, I saw blogging as a way to move from well-received posts on a local message board, to some venue with a broader audience. That didn't happen, largely because I never really struck while the blogging iron was hot. From the looks of things, it has not only cooled considerably, but formed into a gate that's rather hard to get open -- just like traditional publishing.
The fact that the Photo Challenge went nowhere really told me something. It was something I pretty much already knew given that sites with much greater popularity have ceased publishing recently.
Still, I wouldn't have put so much work into this page over the break if I didn't want to continue to do something with it. The trick now is to make the time to write.