Friday, May 23, 2008

5th Blog Birthday (The History of Headspacej: Part 2)

Five years is a legitimate milestone, I think. To keep any project going for five years means that it matters to you, that the inputs required are justified by the results. I feel that way about my blog; and that the longer I keep it going, the more I like it, because it keeps growing and I can go back and dig through more of our personal history. I'm never quite sure why other people read it, and I certainly don't expect anyone other than me to be interested in past years and months of posts, but last year I pulled out some highlights up to two years old, like a sort of baby book from blog birth (May '03) to toddler-aged. I thought I'd try another archive dive for the remaining three years, the posts that stand out for me among the mundane kid photos and repetitive weekend reports. Consider it a greatest-hits album from a washed-up blogger.

We didn't have any kids born in 2005, which really makes me wish Ezra was three right now. I started up a local activism site early in the year and wrapped up Christmas. I was thinking about how to make Summerland great and Slow Food. Angelo and I tried Merritt for the first time with great success. Myron and Tracey joined us in Vancouver to see U2 in May '05. Ella was talking and the Scots invaded. July was great as usual, and I was smart enough to take my vacation at home in August -- we also hit Apex with A&E. I reported on a hodgepodge of good times, spent some time thinking about my roots, learned to can fruit, and we all ran away from bears. October found me getting plenty of exercise after returning from Greg and Sophie's wedding. A&E fit in a pre-winter visit and we hit Rebellion for the first time. I played Rollie Monster with the girls. December sounded decent, with the obligatory Christmas post taking up the most space.

At the beginning of 2006, this post-modern Mennonite turned 33 and the photos on the site improved a lot due to a new camera. Greg and Sophie visited in spring (and I added more photos later). I had an artistic epiphany before a weekend trip to Vancouver (and again). That summer we decided to
sell our townhouse in Summerland, eventually sold it and moved here to Bill's house. We hosted both Friesen families and sent Ivy off to Kindergarten in September. After celebrating Ella's third birthday, we enjoyed autumn swims and embraced Halloween. Christmas '06 stood out in a winter where I was gone to Los Angeles for work a lot.

Early in 2007 I was back in California, but not for work -- I hit Monterey for a design conference. The family made it back to Vancouver and I pondered mortality. The girls survived a daddy-daughter weekend and I discovered the Okanagan mountain goats while predicting the progress of the 2006 NHL playoffs. Ivy learned to ride her bike and Angelo and Esther came out, one of many great visits -- this was the era of Tannis and Esther comparing bellies. I somehow discovered a peculiar face in some forest fungi. Tannis and I took a day trip through the South Okanagan when she was nine months pregnant. Nostalgia buffs enjoyed my rock 'n roll reminiscing with band footage from 1993 and by mid-summer we were hosting the action-packed Pletts.

As August rolled around, we welcomed Ezra into the world, then Imogene shortly after. Somewhere in there, I got to hang out with old friends Milt and Dan, who could probably be best friends in some other life. We saw Tegan and Sara before sending Ivy off to Grade 1. Ella turned four (and rode her new bike without help), and joined us on our Vancouver Island trip in October with the Eidses. Angelo also met me in Merrit for some riding and pubbing. By December I was posting vignettes and gearing up for Christmas in Winnipeg.

We're not even halfway into 2008, but we've already packed in some good living. January and February were all about skating season. By March I was fixated on personality types and voicing my Luddite perspective on cameras. Around the time I was explaining what I do for a living, I got a new bike and we visited two hot springs in Nakusp while picking up Tannis's new ride. Penticton's Fest-of-Ale rounded out the April goodness.

It's fun to skim through my past like this and see patterns and holes. When I added the Dr. Seuss tagline a couple years ago, it was a direct reflection of the purpose of the site -- to record the bits of fun and beauty of our lives. As a result, it is an incomplete history, entirely omitting and ignoring the stresses, ugliness and boring routines of normal life. Truth be told, I don't really think we've had our share of down times, but the near-total lack of negativity in these pages does start to look like a delusion. Also, I was being a little facetious before about the mundane kid photos. I know that my most loyal handful of readers come here exclusively for those, and after going through 36 months of posts, I don't feel like I've let them down. Safe to say, the Hiebert children are well represented.

Thanks again to those of you who do drop in and leave comments. These things are fun, and fun is good.


Angelo said...

Nice retrospective, Jer! It's great for us to be able to look back see how and when our lives have intersected with yours as well.

Although there seems to be a dearth of said intersections in recent months, a problem begging to be rectified.

Jeremy said...

I strongly agree and take all of the blame for that particular problem.

And well said about the joy of intersecting lives. I sure noticed that when going through this bunch -- didn't even link to all of the get-togethers either.

Nikki and Shane said...

You most certainly don't let us down in the kid photos/updates department. That being said, I also very much enjoy the other topics you hit upon just as much as the kids - I just don't always "gush" as much about them :)

tfoxfan said...

No no. No blame is necessary. Seriously, you suggested the last two events. You've just raised the bar on yourself! Haha.

I'm sure something's cookin' in the near future.

Nice recap, btw.

Jeremy said...

It's true E, I can take some credit for initiating some get-together goodness on neutral ground, but we're so far overdue for a Vancouver visit that it has become embarrassing.

And thanks, Nicole. The kid posts are probably just the ones I hear most about, so I assume that's what people are coming for.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday, uh Blog?

Yes, more photos of kids, less close-ups of lichens.

I have too much ale and lager in my ale and lager fridge. Perhaps you can solve this problem in July?


Anonymous said...

Whew - just caught up on a whole lot of your latest blog posts. Sorry - we've been spending all the nice days outside! I love all the pics - can't even pic out a fave, they are all great. Love the recap of the last 5 years, nice. I echo Ryan's plea for help with depleting our "ale & lager fridge" contents in July. Our house is now 1.5 years cat-free (with the exception of outside, and our porch), so maybe even Tan could visit too without feeling like death.

Tannis said...

Thanks for doing all the work of taking photos and keeping this up. It's quite a free ride for me and I get the benefit of having the record up here.

Heather - I had no idea it had been that long since the cats were around. Maybe I could help with that ale and lager too? But since when are we planning a summer trip anyway? Did I miss a post?!

Jeremy said...

Plett, I thought you were a big fan of the lichen photos and posts!

Thanks for the encouragement, both of you action-packed Pletts. Not like I ever need encouragement to help people empty their ale and lager fridges, but it's a great offer. We'll see how it goes -- tossing around a few different ideas right now.

And Tannis, I think this stemmed from my recently blogged desire to see Nine Inch Nails in Winnipeg.

Anonymous said...

Tannis, you are welcome to my share of the ale & lager. I've never been a big fan. And yes, when James moved in, the cats moved out. I'm quite enjoying the cat-free living space I must say. We do keep one around though, outside, for sake of mice and rodents.

Anonymous said...


I only go to your blog about once a month to do my "marathon read" and "picture show". It is so nice to catch up on your family and get a sense of the fun times in Kelowna. While life ain't all fun and we all know there's the bad and the ugly along with the good, I personally still like to delude myself into believing that life in the Okanagan is more fun. More than the beautiful pictures of your kids, I love the read ... your way of putting words together is to me a more amazing craft than your photographic capabilities. Don't ever quit. Looking forward to that hard cover coming out one of these days!

Aunt Carol

Jeremy said...

Hey, thanks for the kind words, Aunt Carol -- much appreciated. I consider my writing here to be redundant and devoid of real character, but really, it's the only writing I'm doing, so I can't pretend I have these deep wells of "real writing" kicking around.

Also, I don't know that life in the Okanagan is inherently more fun than anywhere else...but I do believe that it is easier to have fun here than some places. So we can be sorta lazy about our fun and still have more than our share of it.