Before February 2013 (when I started Spy Garden blog) I had no idea mogs existed. A mog is a word that I just invented (hello neologism of the day!). It means: a mom blog. Martha Stewart is a mom and she has a blog, but it is not a mog. I have two kids and a blog but Spy Garden is not a mog. This woman is a mom, but her blog is not a mog. A mog’s chief focus is “being a mom” and often involves a play by play of the mog kids’ lives. A good mog makes you laugh. A bad one could bore you to tears. No matter how much you can relate to the aspects of another mother’s experiences, there is a reason that the small details of daily life are called “minutia”.
If you have children and a sense of humor than you have laughed at various incidents, some involving rancorous bodily fluids. Kids do, say and write hilarious things. When these hilarious things occur in real life, usually I laugh and laugh and then later wonder, “What was it I was laughing so hard about?” Then I can’t remember the exact details of what happened, or what the kids said exactly so I don’t write it down.
For me, these parental experiences are best enjoyed as they happen. I don’t feel the need to relive them or share them. I’ve already shared them. With my family. Sure, sometimes my kid will write something funny or say something funny and I do share it on Spy Garden. And I love sharing their art because Spy Garden loves art. But why would I write about sick kids or boogers in inappropriate places or debacles involving my favorite lipstick?
Isn’t the time spent cleaning up barf, stains, (etc., etc.) enough time spent on such topics? I guess this is why, though I do occasionally check out mogs, I don’t read them regularly because weirdly, I just don’t relate to them. I just can’t wrap my head around wanting to write about sick kids, sleep deprivation, breastfeeding, etc. I have spent many hours contentedly engaged in these pursuits, but I just think these topics are really boring. I mean, motherhood and lack of sleep? Isn’t that topic a little tired? (Pun intended!)
Normally I write at 9PM. The kids have gone to bed. The house is quiet and peaceful and so I choose to glorify the idyllic moments of childhood or the pretty garden sights or muse about art or some other obscure topic. I just don’t relate to the idea of wanting to write stories about barf at the end of the day.
More power to the mogs though because some of those women are very hilarious. And it is certainly brave to air your dirty laundry (however literally) to the entire world.
My other take on mogs is that though they are usually good for a laugh, they are usually not educational. You may laugh and think “yeah, been there!” But rarely reading mogs do I learn a new skill or new piece of information. I really appreciate the time people take to read the words I’ve written. In exchange for my readers’ time I feel they deserve to learn something new. Brainless humor certainly has its place but when “useful” and “educational” are added to the equation I think writing is elevated to something more along the lines of what I am striving for.
All of this being said, a recent achievement in my “mom-life” has made me want to assert myself as a mog.
This achievement is bringing a fresh hot steaming cup of coffee to the school bus stop.
While simultaneously bringing all of this to the school bus stop:
I’ve been waiting awhile to write about this achievement because I wondered:
“Do I want people to know my kid rides the school bus?”
“Do I want people to know my kid goes to school?”
I am too freaked out by the lack of privacy in the world of social media that I don’t attach my real name to this blog (though some people from “real life” do know who I am) and I don’t do facebook in my real life or my “blog life”. I always wonder how much detail of their lives my kids would want shared when they become adolescents (and beyond). I’ve determined that pictures of them frolicking through the garden = ok. But the “embarrassing” stories and logistics and details of their lives are best enjoyed in the privacy of our home. They may be my kids, but it’s their lives and (for the most part) I want to leave it up to them what they do and don’t want to share.
The other plus of being anonymous is no internet stalkers/murderers. I am always baffled by people who have blogs or facebook or twitter (or whatever other new-fangled things people do) with their real names of themselves, their kids, where they work, live, etc. I have never had a facebook or twitter or any of those other things mostly because I think they are useless but also because:
Why do I want to show serial killers pictures of myself and precise location? HAhahahah
Even in being (mostly) anonymous there are details I still do not share. Everyone has to find their own TMI boundaries. This is what works for us. I am not disparaging the mogs for making different choices and like I said, do enjoy reading some of them.
I want the homeschoolers and the attachment parenters and people without kids to relate to Spy Garden. Because while I enjoy reading things this mom writes, I also crack up at this point of view (which I found when I was trying to figure out the definition of attachment parenting). I can relate to most anyone on some level. I want Spy Garden to appeal to a large demographic. My hope was that people who didn’t even like gardening would still be entertained and learn a few fun facts. When you give too many specific details about your life eventually people think “oh they do THAT?” Then you get judged, people get turned off and my goal of 100 readers per day goes down the drain!
But back to my achievement. It was a great enough feat that I’ve decided to share that, yes, on many mornings, my kid does ride the school bus to a school. But I still consider myself a “homeschooler” in many ways. I’ve always subscribed to the idea that kids learn from MANY different schools of thought. Just because they go to one school on the weekdays does not mean they are gaining from the “school” of their family, Sunday school at church, or are still gaining from their Reggio preschool foundation. Parental academic pursuits are also bound to rub off and are their own sort of school.
But back to my achievement.
When we first got the puppy (Dexie) I attempted many times to take a morning stroll with the baby and puppy and a steaming hot cup of coffee. Then a horse fly would buzz in to attack me and the coffee would end up everywhere but down my throat. The cup (I do realize I could just buy a spill-proof coffee mug but if you are thinking that you are really missing my points entirely) may too have been abandoned on the side of the road a few times.
But not anymore. I’ve made it. I would go so far to venture that I’ve become a raving genius when it comes to asset management.
The morning these pictures were taken, we were standing at the bus stop chatting (I, cheerfully beaming in caffeinated glory). The spy looked down at the ground and pointed to a colorful piece of puppy poop (colorful because she eats a lot of crayons).
I asked him, “Should I take a picture of it?”
“Yeah, you should post it on your blog.”
So here I am discussing poop and the minutia of daily life without offering my readers any piece of useful or educational information. Maybe Spy Garden is a bit of a mog after all!