Thirty Frickin’ Five

Holy crap that’s old!

30 didn’t seem old.

35 does.

I’ve been doing some reflecting as of late and trying to figure out exactly why I do this. And by “this”, I mean “blog”. A reader (shout out to Meghan) emailed me and asked that very question a month or so ago. (She had to teach a class about it at church…she’s not just nosey!)

Here’s part of my response:

(Disclaimer: A few parts are Mormon-y. While I’ve never hidden the fact that I’m a Mormon, I try to keep my faith separate from my blog, since it doesn’t really have anything to do with the subject matter. And it’s very personal. It is, however, a huge part of who I am and I think it’s relevant for this post. * = Mormon term.)

Why do I blog? It’s not for the money — I’ve never made a cent. I do occasionally get free stuff, and that’s fun, but it’s not why I do it. You know how a generation ago all the moms were outside on their front porches watching their kids play in the street? I think that blogging is this generation’s “front porch”. For a number of reasons (safety, moms having to work, more demands on our time, life being less simple), that phenomenon and the sense of community it created are gone. I get that “community” feeling from blogging. And, it works with my life. I have 4 kids, one of which has Asperger’s and Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). I’m the Camp Director* and in the Primary Presidency*. My husband is the Elders Quorum President*. Life is crazy. Blogging can happen at 10pm or 5am. I don’t think my neighbors want to hear from me at those hours.

I also got more help and information in one random off topic post about my son having SPD than I did in months of talking to the school district and trying to get evaluations. The blogging community is giving. They love to share and support one another. I love having a group like that I can go to for support. There’s also a huge range of life experiences out there that I can draw from when I have a question.

I think that blogging has also helped me develop talents. It’s definitely forced me to be more creative. I’ve tried a lot of new things and stepped outside of my comfort zone. (Dude! I was on TV! And I didn’t even freak out or curse!) My sewing has improved. My photography has improved. My writing? Not so much. LOL! I am who I am, though, and the greatest compliment I get is when I meet someone who reads my blog and they say “You’re EXACTLY the same in real life!”

Mormon-y part alert:

Remember that talk President Uchtdorf gave in the General Women’s meeting a few years back? This one….the part subtitled “The Work of Creation”, specifically. We DO need to create.

And I’ve created a blog.


Do I know where this blog is headed?

Nope. I still have no idea.

I hope you’ll stick around for the ride.

Gratuitous picture to make this post cuter:

Happy first birthday yesterday to my freaking adorable niece!

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  1. Liz @ LivingMySweetLife says:

    Happy Birthday!!!!!
    Thank you cor this wonderful blog, you have always been a favorite!

  2. Happy Birthday! Hope you have a wonderful day, remember you are only as old as you allow yourself to be!


  3. Christie @ A Lemon Squeezy Home says:

    Happy Birthday Char. Hope it's good!

  4. Hey ! Happy Birthday! Life only gets better, don't ask me to confess how old I woke up to on my birthday this year! LOL Loved the blog post, keep doing what you do for you, and as long as you do I'll keep reading :)

  5. Happy thirty fifth birthday today to my freaking awesome friend.

    I'm glad you blog. I'll admit, the crafty stuff is only mildly interesting to me (though I'm constantly in awe of your skills). I like it for more personal posts and random pics of your kids – even if they're making faces whilst modeling your latest creation.

  6. Happy birthday Char
    Thirty five isn't old, the one that is old is the word "OLD" itself LOL
    I hope everything is gonna be ok for you

  7. I love this post, it describes similar feelings I have had.

  8. Happy Birthday! I'm glad you blog! I love your blog! ;)

  9. Ditto Valarie…word for word.
    Happy Birthday, Sunshine!

  10. Twins Squared says:

    Happy Birthday Char! I just started blogging a few months ago and I too do it for the sense of community I feel. I love getting tips and ideas from other like minded women about everything from sewing, crafting, cleaning, kids, and general dealing with being a mom and emotional well being. Plus I love how honest you are. I started following this blog because I enjoy crafting. However, my favorite posts are the ones of your kids alseep on the potty or beating the crap out of each other!!! :) Then I can take a breath and say O.K. that happens in your house too. Thanks so much for your wonderful blog!!! P.S. Tried out your Sharpie Tie Dye at my twin girls' b-day party yesterday and it was AWESOME!!! I will e-mail pics. (Sorry for the long comment!)

  11. PeaceLoveApplesauce says:

    Happy Birthday old lady! ;)

  12. brown paper packages says:

    We are the exact same age! My birthday is next week, so I have seven more days until I'm closer to 40 than 30. :)
    I love this post–my feelings and reasons for blogging are almost identical to yours.

    Happy Birthday!

  13. Happy Birthday, to the Master of Crap! I, (and I'm OBVIOUSLY not alone on this), am so pleased that you have a need to CREATE and SHARE your Crappy creations. I'll be celebrating thirty freakin' six next Monday. It's hitting me pretty hard too. Eat some cake, it will help :)

  14. Thanks for sharing this! I totally agree with you about the sense of community and the creativity! Thanks from a fellow member for including all the 'Mormon-y', stuff!

    Hope you have a wonderful birthday!

  15. Happy Birthday!! My Daughter has Asperger's and Sensory Processing Disorder also. Would you do more post about Asperger's I dont have much of a support system, I dont now any other moms that have a child with aspergers, I would love to hear more about how your family lives with it.

  16. AWESOME post. Happy Birthday!

  17. amen sista! i too love the support of the blogging community. Happy birthday!

  18. I never thought we would be this old, it seems like a hundred years ago we were just teenagers. Now for some reason I can't stand teens :)

  19. Happy Birthday!!!

    I don't care where your blog is headed, it is the first one I found, followed and fell in love with, so wherever it is headed, sign me up for the ride.

  20. The Phillips Family says:

    Love your blog and love getting to know more about you!

    I will turn 38 (gasp) in March and I am having a pretty tough time thinking about it! 30 and 35 weren't bad for me, but oh my thirty-EIGHT!

    I love reading Crap and I hope you continue to give us Crap. =)

    Happy Char Day!

  21. Lyndsy Tippetts says:

    Thank you for your post! I am such a huge fan of yours and when life gets less busy for me, I hope to be able to do many of your projects! You are so giftedly crafty!

    I love that talk by Elder Uchtdorf. That talk is awesome. I myself, have a struggling balancing the demands of being wife, mom, etc. etc. and still finding time to create!

    I think you balance well. You are an awesome mom and you can tell your kids are your priority! You also don't put on this fake exterior that everything is perfect at your house and that you are Miss Perfect. I never feel bad about myself after reading your posts…only inspired.

    So, thank you! And happy birthday!

  22. I hit 35 this year. I wasn't happy about it. For some reasons I've never liked the "5" years.

    Happy Birthday to your cutie pie niece.

    I also wanted to say thank you for blogging and thank you for being Mormon but still saying the word crap. ;) It's seriously one of my most commonly used words and it drives my mother who is also Mormon nuts. lol

  23. Happy Birthday! I loved the message you shared with us today – I'm not Mormon, but I am a Bible-believing Christian and am very aware of the spiritual battles we face each day! It is all to easy to just keep quiet and not share our faith with the world – good for you! God bless xxx

  24. So true what you said about the front porch thingy. I never thought of it that way! If you had 30 or 30000 followers you know I'd be along for the ride! PS…I'm reading this great book right now written by a man with aspergers. I'll let you borrow if you want. It's funny in a charming way.

  25. Happy birthday, peachy. And for what it's worth, I think you're absolutley amazing at 35…or you were two days shy of it anyway.

  26. Joni Walton says:

    I thought of you today. I would love to get together one of these days and help you celebrate your 35th. Actually, I just want to see you. Loved this post. Love everything about you.

  27. Lacie @ Creative Attempts says:

    Yay happy birthday! I have been in a super reflective mood lately as well and its always helpful to get some insight from people I admire like you!

  28. Just this... Alice says:

    May your Birthday be all you hope ti to be. 35 is not old yet. I'm smelling 60 and had to slow down a bit. Love the beautification of the post. She's a real cutie.

  29. Flockhart Family says:

    Happy Birthday! I think that you are amazing!

  30. Michelle@Somedaycrafts says:

    Well, that is the age of no return! If I'm going to have any more babies, I better hurry! Great post! Well said!

  31. I. Love. Your. Blog. Just had my bday, too. I'm 32 and that doesn't make me feel old, but I sure don't like the grey hairs and wrinkles!!

  32. Heidi@TheCraftMonkey says:

    I love that you blog, and I love the reasons that you blog! Thank you for being so honest and open and sharing your world with us! I appreciate you!

  33. craftytammie says:

    happy birthday to you! wait until you have to say "i'll be 37 this year." that's when it totally floored me. thirty freakin seven?!?! whaaat? ah well. someday you'll be fifty five (and me, fifty seven) and we'll look back on how young we were in our thirties. life is good. and even better because of your blog. :)

  34. Sisters' Stuff says:

    Happy Birthday! I am just a couple of years behind you. I know how you feel.:) I enjoyed reading what you wrote about your blog and why you do it.

  35. Kari @ Ucreate says:

    LOVE THIS POST!! Hope you had an awesome birthday!!

  36. Sassy Sites! says:

    Happy 35th!!! xoxo

  37. Happy Birthday!! This post was awesome. I had forgotten about that talk and it was a great reminder. I hope you have a fabulous day!

  38. Backwoods Browns says:

    Happy Birthday! Age is just a number! I still feel like I am 23! Except the reality of having kids that are school age!
    I too LOVE your blog. I love the Blog community as well!I love that I can get a "break" from my usual day and learn about others and their lives and also the support and help I get and can give to others is great! I have even started a blog to help motivate me in my crafty adventure! I have my family one and then a crafty one. It does take time to write, but it is so nice that I can do it whenever I want. Like you said, any hour of the day or night! It's so wonderful to get new ideas from others and their sites too, especially on my brain fried days of Home Schooling,doctoring,cooking, cleaning, being a hair dresser, the endless laundry and dishes and so on! Seeing and reading other's blogs can really be a breath of fresh air. Your's is one of them! Thanks and I hope your day is wonderful one!

  39. karlalala1963 says:

    I'm so glad that you do what you do. I love your blog. Happy birthday!

  40. Happy Birthday!!! I love this post and I love that you keep it real!! By the way, I didn't realize your son has SPD. One of my first graders a few years ago had SPD… it is frustrating because it's not as well known and schools (my principal, for example) DEFINITELY don't know how to handle it. I feel for ya!! Hopefully we can get some more education out there about SPD!!!

  41. Strictly Sewing says:

    If you or any of your readers are interested in a super cute dress pattern for girls, check out
    I'm giving away a Pink Fig Pattern. Pink fig is Awesome, you will love it!

  42. I agree, blogging is the new front porch. blogging is a way to connect with those that you would have loved to have had as neighbors, as nearby friends. It is better than a penpal, as you can easily identify with those you share a kinship with,and decide to pursue a friendship (or not).

    And, as to being 30, 35, 45, 55, 65, 75,85 or what ever age…life is good so long as you keep enjoying life and challenging yourself. Quilting and friendships are just some of the delights, for any age. But, my best recommendation to you is to stop worry about age. There comes a point where age is is a matter of family, friendship, interests, and how much you give back to the world. The ride is fast, enjoy what time you have!


  43. Hey Char I just linked to your blog about your high-waisted skirt. Thanks for the inspiration.

    And…amen to all of that. You put into words what I have failed to. I think your writing is just perfect. :)

  44. Oh…and Happy Birthday!

  45. 35 suddenly felt old to me too. It's certainly a faster paced time for us though, so maybe that's what we're feeling! Lol. Love your analogy and am happy to have met you initially in this crazy fun supportive cyber world.

  46. Well happy birthday, Char! I'm just a couple years away from 35 and I'm with you. 32 doesn't seem that old . . .

    I also need to vehemently agree with blogging being your "front porch". My oldest son and daughter are only 14 months apart, and I knew by the time my dd came around that my ds had autism. Early intervention was a good place to start, but it was really blogging that led me to where we are now and it works well for us!

    I know have five children under the age of nine. (How's that for Mormon-y? lol) I'm insanely busy, and I'm currently going through health stuff to top it off. With my situation I rarely have time to go chat with the neighbors unless I schedule it. Thank goodness for blogging and all the wonderful people we get to meet! Without it, I would have gone insane a long time ago!

  47. I hope you had a great birthday! I Loved that talk by Pres. Uchtdorf, he really nailed it!

  48. Thank you for this post. It hits my own nail right on the head. And for what it's worth I think it's amazing that you are willing to put yourself out there and risk rejection and censure. I am just starting out trying to build a following for my blog and it's causing me all kinds of anxiety. I love your "crap" and hope you had a great birthday!

  49. Happy birthday!

    I've got a few months on you and I have to say, 35 (which I initially freaked out about) not so bad :)

    I totally agree with your assessment of the "front porch." I have always called it "over the back fence."

    You're in UT, right? There are several of us local craft bloggers who are trying to plan a lunch next week. Let me know if you might be interested…

  50. KdBuggie Boutique says:

    I TOTALLY tease my husband about Pres. Ucktdorf's talk when I feel the need to be craft. I tell him that I was made to be crafty!

  51. 35 ain't nothin' girl! You're still a young'un! Love all your stuff and your writing! (from a just-turned-56-year-old.)

  52. I did not know you had an Auspie at home! Ok…my world just became more…open. I’ve an Auspie and SPD monkey too. I’ve always liked you for all your crap but (call me shallow) I like you more now ’cause you’re an Auspie/SPD or what I’m coming to realize is pronounced Auspedder :)

    Anyways, I don’t know how I’ve missed your posts about spd/auspie ’cause I would have been all over it. I do therapy with my two here at home. It helps a lot. Lots of thinking outta’ the box and lots of helicopter parenting (I REALLY hate those that use that term like you’re afraid to let your kid experience life.). I know my monkey was diagnosed only after I gave up and “knew” I was just a bad mother. I went to therapy and that was the start. Things are better but worse too. He was 10 when diagnosed. Years of nothing…even one DR. said maybe I just had a mean kid. Yeah…the mean kid that gives all his money to the poor kids jar, sees every homeless person so we can give some money and a nonperishable meal (his idea to stock the van just in case.) I almost hit that snotty doctor. I bet he rethinks saying words like that to another!

    Well…you’ve my email addy up there so if you need someone to bounce ideas for spd/therapy or want to ‘talk’ just holler.


    I’d love to see


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