1. Mr Mallon and a few other people occasionally tell me that since I read so many blogs and have strong opinions on interesting topics, I ought to write a blog. I usually tell them that I don’t have time to write a blog and I’m a born lurker. However, I recently decided that perhaps I should be more community spirited and take part. So here we are.
2. I imagine that this blog will mostly consist of amusing family anecdotes, book reviews, perhaps the occasional thought about home education or something deep and meaningful, and mindless musings that confirm my utter geekiness beyond any reasonable doubt. (As if that were in any doubt to start with.)
3. I am trying to think up appropriate and amusing pseudonyms for my children. Any suggestions would be gratefully received.
4. If you are wondering about the strange looking web address for this blog, it says, “Yn Nhir Y Rhai Byw” which is Welsh for “In the land of the living”. (Every blog address that I put into WordPress was taken, so I had a brainwave that probably far fewer people are clamouring after Welsh language web addresses than English ones.) This is from Psalm 27:13 which says, “I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” I love this verse.
5. As you may have deduced from point four, I am learning Welsh. Most people seem to consider this a rather strange thing to do, possibly going so far as to think it is a waste of time. But I have been fascinated by the Welsh language ever since I first crossed the border and took a look at the road signs displaying long strings of letters that against all reason make up Welsh words. It is such a very old language, and so different from English; I find it entirely beguiling. So in the autumn, when I decided that I needed to be learning something that required actual study in order to prevent my brain from melting away, a quick internet search revealed a multitude of free Welsh learning resources and my journey began. I like to think that it is a reasonably practical thing to do seeing as I live half an hour from the Welsh border. I’m not sure this argument really stands since it is yet to be seen if I will ever pluck up the courage to actually attempt to speak the language to a real, live human being. I may just be a proud reader of Welsh and BBC iPlayer Cymraeg user until I neglect to think about it for a while and forget it all. But there you go. I am enjoying my little learning adventure tremendously so far, and I guess that’s what counts.
6. I’m not sure how many pictures will appear on this blog. I know that people like pictures and if I actually want people to regularly come here I probably ought to include them… a picture is worth a thousand words and all that. But I am terribly lazy about finding the camera, sorting out the memory card, scrolling through the folders and pictures to find the right ones. Not to mention that at the minute I am finding WordPress incredibly confusing when it comes to formatting the blog and making it do what I want it to do. So we’ll see. I guess Mr Mallon can help me with the technicalities and the grandparents and auntie would probably be very pleased if I do manage to make that side of things work.
7. I am also feeling unsure about the whole writing side of this blog thingy. I very much love and spend a great deal of my time reading. I also thoroughly enjoy completing a book and then dissecting it, obsessing over tiny details, looking for symbols, allusions and oblique references to other work and imagining what may have befallen the beloved characters before, after and sometimes (depending on the point of view in which the story is told) during the story contained within the pages of the book.) This all leads me to believe that I could possibly enjoy writing stories myself. However, I’ve always felt that I lack the creativity to come up with characters and stories of my own. I haven’t really done any writing since I left my job 7.5 years ago, and the last time I did any creative writing was probably 14 years ago at university! So I guess I sort of view blogging as a way to ease myself back into the world of words so that down the road a bit I can think about venturing out into a bit of fictional writing. But after such a long time of not writing much, it’s all a bit nerve wracking.
8. Looking over what I’ve written so far, I am reminded that I’m awful verbose. Sorry about that!
9. My children have spent most of the afternoon making their own paper dolls by drawing little figures on cardboard, cutting them out and then having them live in our Ikea catalogue. I believe it’s an idea that my oldest got from a book she’s been reading. It’s lovely, constructive, imaginative play, which makes me feel better about virtually ignoring them for several hours while I set up a blog.
10. I am currently reading A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans. I’m finding it really interesting. So much so, that I think I will be blogging about my thoughts on it whenever I get around to doing this again. So stay tuned. 🙂