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The Pictures You Don't See

There are bloggers that follow themes for different days of the week. Which actually works out a lot better than you might think. I have a hard time being that disciplined because my schedule isn't always set and time isn't always set aside to blog on specific days of the week.

For example, Follow Friday. I like those posts. I've found some great posts from those and discovered blogs that I would never have otherwise stumbled across.

I cross a lot of categories of blogs because I'm interested in so much. I read gardening blogs, genealogy blogs, cooking blogs, knitting blogs, sewing blogs, firefighting, etc. You name it. Because a good writer is a good writer and there are some good writers out there in blogland. I think the proof is in how many of them are published authors. I don't mean authors who started blogging (although I know there are many of those out there), I'm talking about bloggers whose blog resulted in a book.

Today I selected my "lifestyle" blogs to share. That sounds strange but it is the best description I could think of because these women are artistic in so many things. Cooking, painting, photography, writing, etc. I'm in awe of these women. They inspire me to look at what I do in my everyday life. I don't know if it is a coincidence that most of them live in Portland or if Portland is a hotbed for fantastically creative people.

The Portland bloggers are friends and what I wouldn't give to tag around with them. I realize I would be like the pesky little sister following behind but I don't even care.

Angry Chicken sews beautiful clothes one day and paints the most lovely paintings the next. She is frequently doing fun activities with her kids which, on more than one occasion, has given me a great idea for activities and gifts for my nephews. She has two wonderful books out, I made sure I got the first one as soon as it came off the presses and I put her second one on my wishlist. I want to sew. I need to learn more. I'm hoping she will offer workshops at some point.

Inside a Black Apple is the blog of a truly gifted artist. She works in several mediums but painting seems to be her love. I think my favorite part of all her enchanting paintings are the wonderful little backstories she gives each of them. She did compile the stories of the characters into a book recently and they all sold out before I could even blink.

Posie Gets Cozy is personally responsible for getting me neck deep into many projects. She is a talented photographer so everything she is working on or doing looks amazing. I've followed along in her wake and purchased many books just based on what she is doing. It might almost qualify as a kind of craft stalking. Alicia also has an amazing book and she IS holding a workshop in the near future. Fingers crossed I'm not moving the beach house at that time.

The last blogger on this list is actually in England but her blog fits the category and I often forget she is in England because her climate and garden plants tend to align with Portland. So her roses are blooming when my roses are blooming and I swear we get rain at the same time. Yarnstorm is another talented photographer that gets me in a lot of trouble. Something that might look like a garage sale reject in my home somehow looks charming in hers. I don't know how she does it. Jane also has several books, one of which is next to me right now and inspired this post. I'm planning Halloween weekend with the grandparents and I just can't resist making some lovely things from this book.

There is something really special in all of these blogs. I think it is how they view the world around them. Everything is beautiful and special and has its purpose. It's about enjoying the little things. The mug of sweet tea next to me, scritching the soft head of Frankie who has his nose smooshed into my leg and is groaning happily as he sleeps, and the birds splashing happily in the bird bath out back.

Of course, my life doesn't seem quite as picturesque. The couch Frankie and I are on is also covered in muddy footprints (this time of year, the easiest thing to do is wait for the mud to dry and brush it off rather than wash the covers every single day) and the bird bath is actually the lid to my garbage can that is holding rainwater. It all has its own special charm.