Blog Hop Shindig: A Bit About Why and How You Blog

I was invited to participate in a blogger’s blog hop.  What’s that?  Something like a cross between one of those tedious chain letters my mom taught me to refrain from and those painful rubbing-elbows party I always skip out on.  In this shindig, it looks like bloggers answer some questions about why they blog and then pass on the love to another blogger they like.

Jhanis at The Vanilla Housewife slapped me some affection.  Don’t you always wonder if you’d like certain bloggers if you really knew them?  I mean seriously, who actually puts their life on the internet for you to read?  Are they in fact who they say they are?  Well,  I worked with Jhanis just a bit during a Philippines relief drive after that horrible typhoon Haiyan hit her nation.  She’s real, and she’s got to be the most motivated, big-hearted, honest blogger out there and can make you laugh at life and yourself, nodding and saying “Yes!  Yes!” the whole time you read her posts!  Here’s Jhanis, The Vanilla Housewife:

Her invite to the chain-gang party came from here (4 Mothers 1 Blog):

4Mothers: Writing Blog Hop

Whose invite came from here (Defining Motherhood):

So now on to me, The Homeschooling Doctor, who is a happily converted medical doctor turned stay-at-home, homeschooling mom.  The days of rat-race are over, and I love it.

Why do I write what I do?

Well, as tempting as it is, I might come off kind of mean if I wrote about what other people do…so I write about what I do.  ( 🙂 )  I homeschool, raise three daughters, handle my husband, and I read fanatically (like a lizard in the spring who wonders where the sun has been all winter and can’t get the rays soaked in fast enough) about nutrition and natural health topics that pertain to me and my family.  Because they didn’t teach me any of this in medical school.  And people deserve to know it, even if they refuse to implement it!

With the sweat and blood of my own two hands, I slave in the kitchen for the health of my family.  I make potions and spells and (Some folks call those meals and recipes.) practice psychological manipulation to achieve ingestion of these healing tonics.  With my magical endeavors…

…I cured my husband’s severe gastroesophageal reflux disease.  Not Prilosec.  Not Pepcid.  Not avoidance of spicy foods.  Not abstinence from eating after 5 pm.  Me.
…I cured my daughter’s severe constipation and toilet screaming.  Not Miralax.  Not fiber.  Not increased water.  Me.
…I cured my dry eyes.  Not Restasis.  Not primrose oil.  Me.
…I greatly diminished another daughter’s year-round severe allergies.  Not Flonase.  Not Singulair.  Not Xyzal.  Not dust mite bed and pillow covers.  Me.
…I eliminated nearly 15 daily prescriptions from our household of five.  Fifteen.  All me.

(It wasn’t all me, by the way.  I know that.  But it was changing the way we ate, for sure.)

Nutritional rehabilitation changed my approach to food, life, and medicine forever, and that’s the core of my blogging intentions–it’s what I’m “supposed” to write about (envision Paul on the road to Damascus).  I’m a doctor at heart, and that means I care about people and their health, even if I stay home to take care of my nearest and dearest.  I see hundreds of people each week–at the grocery, at church, around town– hurting and not feeling good, and I now have confidence that nutritional intervention could change how they feel for the better.

How is my writing different from others in my genre?

1.  It allows readers to watch how a conventional medical doctor comes to terms with her incomplete view of health and nutrition as it pertains to herself and her family.  Her “aha” moments.  Her frustrations.  Her battles.

2.  You will never hear me say two things regarding nutrition:

  • “Nutritional rehabilitation (change) is easy.”  It is not easy.  But we can do it.  As much as I love pizza and donuts, I do not intend to let them rob me of normal brain and body functions.
  • “This is how you need to eat.”  There is no one true path to nutritional intervention, although there are commonalities among the successful paths.  Shun processed foods and stick to whole, unprocessed foods.  Look for food intolerances and nutritional deficiencies.

3.  I expect no gain from my blog.  None.

4.  I hope it allows professional women to know, if it is what they want, that staying home with the kids can be more challenging and rewarding than any career.  Hold your chin up.  Worth comes from inside not from external, workplace labels and accomplishments.

What am I working on/writing?

I have several topics lined up to write on, including iodine, vitamin K2, types of fats and fatty acids, how foods affect the brain, advantages and disadvantages some people find to low carbohydrate eating, placentophagy, hepatitis vaccines in newborns, and finishing the butyrate series.  Lots of recipes.  Finishing up our fourth grade homeschooling curriculum.  And on and on.  I just don’t have enough time to turn them out!

Most of my post ideas come from “battles” I am fighting (or have fought), information I am learning, realizations that struck me over the head, and tips from others.  If I have to Google something, that topic may eventually make it the “to post” list.  If I don’t understand something, and I get it sorted out, then I think that deserves a post.  It reminds me of the good ol’ days:   You’re sitting in chemistry or math class in high school.  You’re getting more confused by the minute as the teacher scratches away at the board.  You look furtively around.  Is anyone else confused?  Are you the only one?  You hate to ask a question that seems obvious to everybody else, yet, you’re just not getting this.  Does Jeff get it?  He’s the smart one.   How about Melissa and Laura?  They always know this stuff.  Ah, shoot.  Who cares?  You just don’t see how anyone could be getting this and you’re just going to have to deal with looking like the idiot.  So up shoots your hand and teaching pauses for your questions.  The teacher re-explains it.  You hear relieved sighs, groans of relief, and rapid scrawling from your classmates as everybody in the class suddenly “gets it.”  I hope my blog helps people “get it.”  That they’re not afraid to ask questions here.  (And that I’m not afraid to say, “I don’t know.”)

How does my writing process work?

It works best alone and uninterrupted.   And only from my laptop.  So it doesn’t work too well too often!  Every time I’m interrupted, for some reason it sets me way back to the beginning of my post.  I can’t just jump back in where I left off.  Each post type has a different approach and takes a different amount of time to write.  At any one time, I try to keep posts coming 2-3 times a week while still having time to read and work on the longer medical/nutritional/health posts:

  • Recipes are easy posts except for the dreaded photo shoot and actual post layout.  Recipes actually kind of feel like cop-out posts.  On the other hand, it’s one thing to say “Cut out grains” and something else to actually eat that way most of the time, day in and day out.  So I think people really like ideas to see that eating without processed flours, sugars, and dairy really is possible.  I try to keep a couple in the draft bin.
  • Homeschooling posts are fun to write up.  I just can’t even tell you how passionate I am about teaching my children and bringing them up to be independent, compassionate, and strong women with highly educated minds of their own.  Homeschooling posts aren’t too meddlesome to write except I tend to exaggerate some regarding my response to my kids’ behavior and I worry that somebody may misinterpret my humor!  My mom used to always say to me in front of other people when I got lippy, “Do you want me to backhand you?”  My mom never backhanded me ever–heck, she never even yelled at me.  I usually write these the week they’re posted.
  • Nutritional cheerleading posts are some of my favorites.  I could write these three times a week, but I think that would get too redundant.  These are easy because as I write them, I’m also cheering and encouraging myself through nutritional intervention!  Usually I’m feeling inspirational when I write these, and they type out pretty quickly in a few hours.
  • Medical/health/nutrition posts can take months to research and write.  I scour the internet when I am trying to determine what I think about a topic such as iodine, butyrate, or cooking with olive oil.  I like to see what even the most radical witch doctor says so I can try to piece it all together in my own mind without bias. I refuse to be locked into one camp’s thinking ever again.  These posts require extensive searching and reading of books, references, research articles and blogs–all while trying to not be on the computer all the time.  ((I see an exponential surge in my kids’ computer time as they see me on the computer.  Sure, I’m learning, but for all they know, they think I’m playing NickJr.com.  So I have to print off most of the scientific articles I am reading.)  After I start chasing my tail and hitting on the same articles and blogs twice or thrice, I know it’s time to start drafting a post and compiling the information in (hopefully) language every person can understand.  These posts are rewarding and I learn so much, but as they take so long, I like to fill in the gaps with all the other fun stuff in life, too.

Well, I guess that’s way too much to have said.

My love pat heads out to And Three to Go!  This family travels all over the world.  And eats all over the world, too.  Travel and eating.  Two of my favorite things.  They do it well–and with a toddler!  Aaaaaaaaaah!  An elbow-rubbing chain letter may or may not fit into their schedule…but travel and eat with them anyway!  If she takes the challenge, maybe we can learn how she manages to blog and travel at the same time.

Terri

 

 

 

24 thoughts on “Blog Hop Shindig: A Bit About Why and How You Blog

  1. The Vanilla Housewife

    First of all, THANK YOU for hopping in, this is why people should read your blog. You put so much effort into your posts and we, your loyal followers are learning so much from you. We gain knowledge from you AHA! moments. Not applying all of them im my third world kitchen but I’ll get there. In time.
    Personally, your blog is the only health/nutrition related blog I read that does not bore me to death, as a matter of fact, I enjoy reading your blog so much. Love learning something new even if I feel like being schooled and scolded sometimes. Feelings of a guilty party. LOL
    Also, thank you for the kind words. Warms the soul. 🙂
    THIS is a writing process. Months! Wow. That’s a long blog post preparation! I’m looking forward to the vaccine post. Once you finish the butyrate series, I think I will read the entire thing again. 🙂
    Salamat Terri and it’s great that you tagged Jenny! Looking forward to reading her post. I hear they are going to England!
    Have an awesome week to you and your family!

    Reply
  2. andthreetogo

    Great post! I am always so interested by your posts and especially the homeschooling ones feel really close to home. 🙂
    Also I love your recipes! I actually do not really plan ahead for my posts too much, so I think I will be answering these questions myself on Wednesday! Thanks for tagging me 🙂

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      You are so welcome to be tagged! I look forward to reading it! I wonder how you manage to blog with Z and moving around so frequently! I love to travel, but I think I’d get a little worn, especially with a toddler. I am enjoying the CA posts, and I can’t wait to visit there one day. And I look forward to the England posts, too! Can’t wait to hear about the food there and if you think it’s exciting food compared to all the other countries you’ve visited! Hope you are great!

      Reply
  3. lakenormanprep

    Fantastic post!! You know I am a HUGE advocate of healthy eating and homeschooling. It did take me a while to come to a happy place about staying home. I love being with my kids and homeschooling, but I miss that “hospital part of me” sometimes. I finally gave up my PRN position (that was the string that I was holding on too) and I am finally ok with it after 5 months. I love reading your blog and your aha moments. I have been amazed how food has changed our lives too!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Who just ever had any idea food could make that much difference? I know I didn’t!

      It took me awhile to be comfortable staying home, too. The hospital provides such a familiar environment. Once when we moved to a new place, I felt like a fish out of water until I went back to work at the hospital. There it was like, “Aaaah. I understand these people. I understand our purpose here. We’re all focused on the same priorities. Let’s go to work!” Then, once you’re there awhile, everybody knows you. I guess now, the grocery store clerks know me pretty well. 🙂 (And I hung onto PRN forever, too. It was a string, a connection, to that identity for me!)

      Anyhow, it’s all good now, isn’t it!? I’m very pleased with our situation here at home. Food and all! 🙂

      Reply
  4. Valerie

    I wish everybody would share a post about their blogging/writing process! It’s so interesting. 😀
    When I saw that Jhanis tagged you, I was happy and hopeful that you’d do it too – so glad you did!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      It is neat to see how others work the process. I remember your post about something similar awhile back. You are very organized in your system, and it kind of prompted me to take inventory.

      I saw you and Jhanis ganging up on me on her hop post. Mean girls. 🙂 Have a super week this week!

      Reply
  5. IrishMum

    What? You mean you don’t talk to your kids like that??!! 😉
    You put so much effort into your posts about Medical/health/nutrition, and it shows. I pride myself on knowing quiet a bit about these topics, but I like to see your take on them, and often learn something new.
    I would love to hear more about your daughter’s year-round severe allergies and how you have helped them. I have helped my son’s allergies 80% but he still has mild hay fever in the summer.

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Thanks, Irish Mum. As far as allergies, it’s kind of strange how when we changed our eating drastically two years ago, all three girls and myself had huge, dramatic improvements in our allergies. It was all food for the girls because they took no supplements (except maybe a calcium). My worst was on three meds and still uncontrolled. My next worst was on three meds and controlled. My last was on two meds and controlled. Now we use nothing year round, but a bad pollen count may get one or two of us (me included this year) for a couple of weeks. But things always calm back down. My oldest tested exceptionally sensitive to grasses and I often would like to look into that eventually how that could be connected to food (I mean those grains are often grasses.).

      Reply
      1. IrishMum

        That would be interesting! I wonder if there is a connection. My oldest is doing great with the change of diet, but I give him Quercetin in the summer, and reduce foods with natural histamines. He does still get itchy eyes from time to time, so room for improvement. Better than the constant itchy eyes of the past 🙂

      2. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

        No kidding it’s better than constant itchy eyes of the past! Same for us. At first, they seemed 100% improved, but I’d say it’s dropped back to 80-90% depending on the season, what we’ve eaten (I wonder a little about eggs and nuts and stuffy noses but I’m not going there now!), and animals. Now you’ve got me thinking. We recently started L. plantarum for my oldest’s eczema that flared a bit this winter. It seems to have helped that, but her allergies right now are the best of all of us–and she used to be my absolute worst one on three meds and still uncontrolled (it’s spring here and after a long, hard, deep winter things are really popping out)…I wonder…http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21121978. Who knows.

  6. FitMomPam

    Seriously the part about how you research posts and like recipe posts except for the picture is as if i wrote it myself! I am trying to be better about photography but it’s just not my passion. I enjoyed reading this and liked seeing how much we have in common!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Thanks! In researching posts, isn’t it crazy how one lead leads to another lead leads to another lead. (Did that make sense?) And your husband is like, “What? Are you still reading about THAT?” You kind of have an idea for yourself what you think, but you sure want to support it if you’re writing it for others to think about!

      So funny you aren’t a fan of the photo part either. I always admire your photos and layout, if that’s any reassurance that you’re doing great!

      Thanks for reading! Hope it’s all good out in the Eastern half of the US and you’re running strong!

      Reply
      1. FitMomPam

        Oh thanks! I have been working in the photos more but I can only seem to master the up-close-and-personal shot!
        And yes I totally get the one post leading to another.

  7. Pingback: Let's Go To The Hop: A Writing Process Blog Hop | And Three To Go

  8. Nicole, The Non-Toxic Nurse

    Love your blog and enjoyed reading about your process. Going to try and take your advice about “worth comes from inside” to heart–having my “PRN string” involuntarily cut by dysautonomia has left me questioning my worth and my place for sure. Thanks!

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      Thank you…I know what you’re saying about “cutting the string” feelings. Especially when you know you worked so hard to get there and threw yourself into your work when you were there. Knowing you are just as capable as the next guy who is still working but because you don’t work, you don’t get that professional respect. Now, you just kind of slide back into “anonymous”–well, that’s what it feels like anyway, when you’re used to a hospital situation with its own little social system you’re a part of. But we both know our worth comes from WHO we are, not WHAT we are! Getting our prideful, wordly brains that like to always measure things wrapped around that, though, takes constant inner coaching! And BTW, how have you been?! ~~Terri

      Reply
      1. nontoxicnurse

        Exactly! I have needed inner coaching along with some external coaching from my husband, who, thank God, is a great coach. Still doing the same and waiting on specialist appointments to try and pin down root causes. Thanks for asking:-)

  9. All Seasons Cyclist

    Great article! I think I missed the article about how you got your daughter off of Singulair. And where was the article on gastroesophageal reflux disease? (Yeah, I have personal reasons for needing both articles)

    Reply
    1. thehomeschoolingdoctor Post author

      The GERD has taken the whole two years, as my man only implemented diet changes with very few or no supplements. The allergies happened very nicely within the first few months of intensive diet change. I mentioned this way long ago, long ago. I should do updates!

      Reply
  10. Pingback: Let's Go To The Hop: A Writing Process Blog Hop - And Three To Go

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