Sunday, May 30, 2010

Reflections on the Direction Forward and Summer Time!

Gosh, the weather in Southern Ontario (that is the province that the City of Toronto is located within Canada, for my global guests) has been absolutely fabulous.  I think we have had more summer weather in the months of April and May than we had the entire summer of 2009 - we called that the summer that wasn't following the winter that went on forever.  We in Southern Ontario have weather of extremes.   Cold snowy winters and often (although not so much in the years immediately preceding 2010) hot and humid, tropical summers.  Summer is my favourite time of year.  Most years we only have reliably 2 months of real hot summertime weather.  This year looks like we might be blessed with 4 or even 6, if the fall cooperates.  That is spectacular in my books.

I am planning an active summer of hiking, walking and yes I am embarrassed to say just driving around in my car with my dog Bella and "doing stuff" in the little spare time I have in my calendar.  Work is still horrendously stressful and I am doing far too many hours.  I simply don't have enough time.  I started to think about how want to be spending my time this summer and concluded I need to review priorities and return on effort and to figure out what I am doing right and where I need to tack into the wind to get a bit more traction.  My blog came up on radar as something that needs to be reviewed.

My reasons for blogging are many:
  • I enjoy writing and aspire to do some serious noveling at some point - therefore I the habit and  practice of  writing is needed.
  • I want to share with my global friends what a great place Toronto is and tell you about what I see and do in this city.  
  • In particular, I want to promote art and architecture within the City of Toronto to  potential visitors.
  • Ditto Collingwood, because that is where my Shangri-La getaway is located.
  • I want to leave something of me somewhere friends and family can go to catch up with what is going on in my world, my thoughts, likes, dislikes and opinions when they have the time and inclination
  • I want to make new friends in the blog sphere - who knows maybe my "Prince Charming" is out there reading this right now! Failing that, I am sure that there are lots of folks who may well be living in the countries I see myself visiting in the next number of years and maybe I can connect with some of my blog sphere friends "in the flesh".
  • I want to promote others who have a presence in the Internet by "retweeting" and commenting on the neat stuff I find there. 

My posting schedule of twice a week plus maybe one or two on the weekend does allow me to meet these goals and if I cut back I will not be achieving them.  But maybe that is ok for the summer.  After all, don't we all remember what it is like when school lets out and we have the summer months off to rest and recharge.  I for one found that I approached September with optimism and enthusiasm for a new school year of accomplishments.  Maybe it can be that way for my blog.

Inciently, you notice that increasing my visitor count was not listed as a goal for me - but lets face it, all bloggists hope to have visitors and increasing numbers do provide a sense of satisfaction and motivation on days when it is easier to go outside to play rather than write a blog.  Which gets me to the next point.

I do have regular visitors, however I have been noticing that every month I am doubling the number of folks who come for one visit in response to a google search but the number of repeat visitors seems to be dropping.  I find it great that I come up on so many google searches - perhaps I am providing some reference to folks who are looking for information on a topic I've blogged about.  Sadly, it  seems I may have lost some of my regular readers but it might  be that they are as busy as I am these days.  I subscribe to a service which logs visitors and through the use of  IP addresses and cookies attempts to tell me how many returning visitors I have and what city/country that they are located in.  Unfortunately, it isn't easy to check how many returning visitors come in a given month - it could be that the same 3 or 4 people visit each day or that I have a different 3 or 4 repeat visitors coming each month (which means 90-120 returning visitors).  I guess the answer is somewhere int between - at least I hope that there are more than 3 or 4 people who are coming back regularly at any frequency.     Lord knows that I have a majority of silent readers with very few venturing any comments on the blog.    But that is ok.  I read lots of blogs and comment on only a few myself.  Please do feel free to just say hi... maybe we can strike up a conversation.  :)

In any case, maybe I don't have a great number of regular visitors to worry about disappointing if I don't post on a set timetable and the content is thin for the summer months.  Not to say I don't appreciate you guys who return for another visit, even if it is on an irregular schedule.

Where am I going with this?  I am not going to give so much time to blogging away the hours.  I might be able to sit dock side and read a blog or twelve, but I am not going to be able to continue churning them out 2 or 3 blogs  per week at least while this glorious weather calls me.   So I am reminding everyone that I am officially on summer hours and I will be posting  photos showing what I am doing more than I will be writing long blogs for the summer.  I have a few blogs prewritten for events which are coming and those will get polished and posted, and maybe if the weather turns nasty I might put out a longer update, but for the most part there will be only brief postings here.

So please pop by to see whats up when you are able but don't expect any long winded updates and essays until September, the fall weather approaches.


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