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December 12, 2014 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Blogging without guilt

Sounds impossible, that. Deceptive.

Like diet approved fudge. (That’s a serving size? For what? A gnat?)

Blogging wafts innocently in. A delicate sparkling spiderweb. Gotcha!

Morning dew on iron bridge.all rights reserved. No permission granted. Copyrighted.

Not Dawn’s early lights. Morning does dew elegantly.©

Ah, so seductive, that blogging.

A place to babble. (Stage is waiting. There’s your cue.)

A community! Fun times. (Blog hop. Party at Franks’. Ignore the trolls!)

Oh, then there’s stats. (Look! They like me. They really really like me. How did that post get 762 hits? That post? Not even, Fresh Pressed?)

Mother tucking children in bed Christmas Eve. (1917 postcard.National Lib. of Norway.Anne-Sophie Ofrim/

Now be good and keep all your promises. Someone’s watching.(1917/Nat.Lib.of Norway.Anne-Sophie Ofrim/

Then it seeps out. Unseen until too late: Blogging Guilt!

Oh, the laundry can wait. Need to get this post done and up. (They are waiting…really. They are. I’m sure of it. No, I’m not easily deluded…some of those subscribers are real. Don’t want to disappoint.)

Sigh. How rude. Haven’t managed to respond to  comments on previous posts. (and a new one dancing out the door.)

All those blogs are being followed now? Oh, the unforeseen obligation. (They’ll hate me for ignoring those post notifications in email. I owe them comments…So many blogging debts so little time…)

And stats. (Dare to look?)

Dancing as fast as I can. You probably are, too.

Pink sky at morning. No permissions granted. Copyrighted. All rights reserved

Party decorations out skyward. Can’t miss that!

So here’s the plan until after Christmas:

I’ll still be posting some.

Stories and odd stuff keeps showing up like stray cats. Can’t turn them away, can I?

Working on that guilt…Sort of…

Oh, what a cute little concept and story idea.

Come on in out of the weather. Sit down and gather your thoughts. (Not that chair – her story is unfolding….)

Oh, more outside? Take a number. Your post writing time is just ahead…

Stop shoving and stay in line!

Don’t use that tone with me.

Well, you can see the problem.

That’s not even mentioning the odd photo opportunities.

Is there’s an invisible sign outside announcing a haven for thoughts abandoned?

moss. all rights reserved. copyrighted. no permissions granted

Fuzzy thoughts? Christmas oozing? You decide. I haven’t time.©

Comments will be turned off next week until after Christmas. 

Not that I don’t want to hear your side.

Not that I don’t care about your thoughts.

You know how it is when you plan to stop at a friend’s house for just a minute, then the next thing you know you’ve been laughing and talking for hours and all of a sudden it’s dark? And you know the dog is freaking out because you didn’t leave lights on in the house and the cat is cranky from food deprivation.

all rights reserved. No permissions granted. Copy righted

Our paw. Too weak to wave.©

It’s that. Time crunch factor.

Responding to comments takes time.

I really miss visiting all of your blogs and reading your posts. 

 So I’m trying this instead of a total break.

It’s win-win. Easy peasy.

I get to relax and read without guilt.

You aren’t pressured to comment here, yet your blog gets visits.

Feel free to run by and leave “Like” as a calling card or comment.

It will make me feel so much less insecure.

Stats are a terrible drug…Gateway to what, I wonder?

Sunrise lined by power lines.

Sky bright. Wired lights. ©

So run wild. Give yourself a gift: Be guilt free.

Be seein’ ya’ around the neighborhood.

Merry merry,

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

dawn with fog. no permissions granted. all rights reserved. Copyrighted

Coloring outside the lines again?  Foggy thoughts are productive ones.©




  1. cecilia / Dec 12 2014 1:29 pm

    it will be a strange thing not to comment.. hmm.. I look forwrd to the experiment but well done for turning art of the blog race off for a break.. c..

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 2:38 pm

      It will be odd not to grab coffee and sit down and chat each morning. (We’ll see if I can resist.) Just need a bit of slack to stay afloat. (will this sneezy plague never leave? Hope you are faring better).
      It’ll be just like we used to sit on the porch in the morning and nod and wave to the neighbors waving as they drove down the dirt road. Each thinkin’ “Well, must take time to go over to their porch and catch up on things shortly.”
      Waving to ya’ now. Be ’round to visit once chores are done!
      Thanks for nodding.


      • cecilia / Dec 12 2014 3:26 pm

        Sometimes it is useful to set defined parameters, then put that collected time to good use. And yes this cold is rubbish.. but the pigs still need to be fed!.. c


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:50 pm

          So true (how did you know real life is out there – calling with impatience)…pigs and dogs never approve of slackers. (But they are so cute and endearing….a plot to enslave us…willingly.) I’m the Christmas person/emotional support staff and I’m behind. Things in real world do need extra attending to right now. Sun, sleep, and laughter – wishes for your day!


  2. roughseasinthemed / Dec 12 2014 1:38 pm

    How do you mean no comments? Damn cheek. Now I’m going to have to race through before you turn ’em off. But yeah, I’ve been asked where my posts are before now … so they really are out there. Waiting. Waiting. For that next post. Which is in my head but nowhere else right now 😀

    Time to crunch some dog biscuits and then snooze. Er not me.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:09 pm

      Weather’s nice. Holdiay really not attended to yet – tree’s not even up. Still not over this miserable cold – neither is husband ( and they always have it wore…ask them.) Gotta let something go…and it’s not going to be ignoring the outdoors while it’s nice. (It may be a dreary grim rainy stuck inside Jan. and Feb this year…certainly have had a great deal of sea fog so far)
      So many stories..I do think they are like stray cats that have found a hole in a fence of a yard that has a food bowl out…they all amuse me – hopefully others, too.
      Molly can’t decide whether to bark at delivery guys or not – the last one brought her a box of treats. (everything is available on line, now – at a better price.)
      Today must round up the dog tumbleweeds or we may disappear under them. Paw waves to all! And will wander your way before long!


  3. Seumas Gallacher / Dec 12 2014 1:53 pm

    …LOL …great post 🙂 enjoy yer break ( altho’ one suspects there may be a wee relapse back here and there ;:)

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:13 pm

      Got me nailed, have ye?
      Preemptive strike as Christmas gets closer. And I do want to be able to spend a bit o’time visiting around the neighborhood (without the nagging self imposed guilt….so difficult when strictly raised with manners?)
      Thanks for grinning along


  4. inmycorner / Dec 12 2014 1:57 pm

    I can so relate to the blogger’s guilt. It has become part of my culture – I see posts in action and think, “wow – that would make a good story”. And the laundry does beckon – while I muse on life. Have a wonderful break (not that you really will actually stop thinking about your blog ….) and I look forward to reading you in the future!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:19 pm

      Can see you’re afflicted, too. Stories wrap around your ankles and beg. What choice do you have but to take them in…..cruel to dismiss them….
      Instead of a total break, I’m adjusting blogging priorities a bit. Writing, touring the neighborhood and reading blogs, commenting, responding to comments – something’s got in a time crunch.
      So gifting to bloggers a release from obligation to comment here which will allow me more time to visit there. (Merry stats for all – oh, oozes out)
      Thanks for merry-ing along.


      • inmycorner / Dec 12 2014 3:25 pm

        I love your use of personification! The stories do beg! They have no manners at all. If only they could be trained better! And I agree with another blogger who said she would have to restrain herself from commenting – I can see why – your imagery is so infectious and inspiring. Happy surfing to you!


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:44 pm

          And this time of year all the sagas and epics demand merry merry decorations, too! So pushy. (We shall not discuss enabling….) Thanks for giggling along

          Liked by 1 person

  5. Robin / Dec 12 2014 3:19 pm

    I have blogger’s guilt, too. I just can’t keep up. I like your idea, and may borrow it sometime in the future. Your sunrise pictures are beautiful. I especially like the morning dew. 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:42 pm

      Must make room to enjoy everything right now and not be exhausted. So I’ll just wander to everyone else’s house to chat. (Sorry, that means you have to pick up the blog and have cookies and just desserts! Giggles) Thanks for popping over – see ya’ soon.


  6. Littlesundog / Dec 12 2014 3:33 pm

    I completely understand. I have backed off many times, for a couple of weeks or even a month, not publishing a post. The ideas for posts are continually churning in my brain, but it is finding the time to sit and write. I think we worry too much about expectations… I know I do! I also know that writers are understanding and compassionate about taking a break, and taking care of self. We don’t do our best writing when we are stressed or worried about other things. I will always look forward to your posts, and I encourage you to enjoy your break. Also… I appreciate your work. Not sure what your particular writing style is called (I’ve long ago forgotten many things I learned in English Literature and Creative Writing classes), but I love the challenge of gathering clues along the way as to what the lesson/moral of the story is. You are a clever writer! I’m going to miss your wit, especially over the holidays when I can use a boost of laughter and whimsy. Be well, my very good friend to the South!! 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 3:58 pm

      Oh, we all know you are out wandering the woods and pondering creature comfort, so we always wait for you to show up on the porch. There’s too much going on, and I missed keeping up with your part of the words, seeing Ci’s farmy, and so many more. It is a neighborhood. Writing is like breathing. Stories just show up which amuse me and hopefully others. Thanks for the encouraging words
      I still plan to allow them to dance, but want to visit with friends, too. Hopefully closing comments for a bit with free up enough time to enjoy all that’s happening in real life and in blogland. I do so miss the woods this time of year – it’s the best time to wander here…no snakes. No mosquitoes! Always happy to see your hoof marks on this trail.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Your Moderate Mama / Dec 12 2014 4:20 pm

    Have a wonderful break and holiday my friend!

    p.s. I have blogging guilt when I forget to feed my children 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 4:32 pm

      See, now that’s where dogs and confident cats won’t let that happen: paws, jaws, claws.
      Planning a few posts, but closing comment carves out a little spare time. And this way, I can come to your bloghouse and chat…and you have make the coffee and cookies! Thanks for merry-ing along


  8. Paul / Dec 12 2014 4:53 pm

    Happy Christmas Phil aand all the Phillites!

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 5:27 pm

      See. Now if you had a blog, I could come visit your house and chat….any guest posts planned? Thanks for jingling along!


      • Paul / Dec 12 2014 8:09 pm

        Yes, I have a few guest posts coming up around Christmas. I do a weekly “If we were having coffee” piece every Sunday over at Willowdot 21. The most recent is here : There will be a post each Sunday through Christmas.

        There will be a post called “The Christmas Kitten” over at Cordelia’s Mom:

        Another post at Anawnimiss called “The Blizzard” over at: sometime before Christmas.

        That’s it so far, 😀


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 5:00 pm

          Thanks so much for the links. I was worried your posts would be missed – I am determined to catch up and then figure a way to stay current – and sane. Stay warm. Sun here today and 70 with storms Sun-Mon, then we rush Molly out to exercise Tues and Wed with no rain. Silly, right, watching the weather to plan around dog exercise? Merry, Merry! See ya around the neighborhood!


  9. jannatwrites / Dec 12 2014 6:20 pm

    I feel this, too! Everyone seems busier this time of year. I was going to post again this week, but held back because I won’t be able to respond to comments anyway. I really try to avoid the stats obsession, but sometimes I sneak a peek 🙂 Hope your holidays are enjoyable – I wanted to be sure to get this comment in under the wire!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 6:59 pm

      It’s a reality check: just so much time and energy. (Stats are what they are. Guess they are important to WP – they just tweaked that section. You can always tell in Reader the blogs that are obsessed with stats. How do people manage to post so much? And how do they manage multiple blogs at the same time? No, don’t tell…don’t even want to know.Add giggles here) Glad you slipped by to chat – Merry Merry until the star comes out!


  10. Carrie Rubin / Dec 12 2014 6:32 pm

    I think we can all relate to this. I tossed the guilt aside, and I only post once a week to every other week now. I still have a number of blogs to try and keep up with, and I do the best I can, but if I’m traveling or have something else going on, I cut myself some slack. I’ll likely take a holiday break too. Something tells me many of us will. 🙂



    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 12 2014 6:53 pm

      Seems a lot of people packed up and shuttered blogs last week.(which will make it easier to catch up with blogs I follow. Whew!) It would be easier for me to post less frequently if these odd stories and events would stop clinging around my ankles…but shhh…don’t want them to run off so there’s nothing to write about!
      I know, if I started a novel/short story anthology, that would take care of motivation to blog, right?
      Hope you are managing to stay snug in all that bad weather. It’s going to cloud up/storm here Sunday…so until then, everyone outside while you can! Thanks for checking in to chat

      Liked by 1 person

  11. EllaDee / Dec 12 2014 8:17 pm

    The minute something feels like an obligation, that’s it, something has to give… especially in this fine blog world where time and space matter so much less 🙂
    As you know I downsized from 3 blogs to one, and recently eased up on posting (pics now on Instagram and blog sidebar) and also reassessed number of blogs I follow -quality not quantity counts. But I’m still here whenever you are!
    But real life and lack of internet coverage create a blogging holiday for me over Christmas/New Year and the first part of January… absence makes the heart grow fonder 🙂


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 5:11 pm

      As kids, my dad would haul us to the farm where there were no phones – he didn’t want to any phones around. We were thrilled when we finally got minimum electricity, didn’t have to use a bucket at the well, and had indoor bathroom…even if it stil mean sponge baths with hot water from the stove. That absence of interruption allowed lots of free time to notice the natural world and the quiet. As kids we didn’t realize the luxury. So glad you guys are heading out for the holidays – a real gift more valuable than many store-bought ones.
      Had to resort a bit. Got sick, husband has some health issues, and all the Christmas stuff (quality not quantity, jettisoned excess a few years ago) is up to me since others too busy.
      Glad people understand. Had to choose 2 out of 3: writing, responding to comments, or visiting blogs and chatting there.
      No stress holidays for all! Merry, merry and will be sledding by soon!


  12. jmmcdowell / Dec 12 2014 9:23 pm

    Great idea to close the comments for a while. 🙂 Enjoy the holidays, and may the Muse always be with you!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 5:16 pm

      Time of year for fun and merriment. (and naps…and those books waiting to be read…and going outside when the sun actually manages to show up – today 70 and sunny, but what’s ahead is all grey..)
      If I can’t figure out how to close comments, I will be emailing you for help!
      (Did you see what Greenpeace did in Peru to the ancient land figures? Serious damage for what? Expected better. Put brain in gear and think next time.)
      Thanks for digging up a comment! Merry Merry all the way!

      Liked by 1 person

      • jmmcdowell / Dec 14 2014 12:30 am

        WordPress doesn’t make it easy to find where to turn off the comments for individual posts, so just give a shout if you need that help. 🙂

        I saw the story about the Nazca lines and Greenpeace, and it was disturbing. Normally I can agree with much of what Greenpeace stands for, but I think we need to remember to be respectful of those people with whom we disagree and their cultural beliefs, heritages, and rights. Coming across as arrogant, uncaring, and disrespectful tends to make “the other side” dig in and close its collective ears to new ideas, potential compromises, and change.

        (You can probably guess who’s the diplomat in my family….)

        Liked by 1 person

        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 14 2014 1:01 am

          We’re pretty much on the same wave length on Peru. Sadly they lost a lot of credibility and good feelings towards the group’s efforts. Totally shocked.
          I’ll mess with settings tomorrow found something and Pied Type left a link. (I’m such a lazy WP user…just let me write and post…really envy those that can manage all the WP bells and whistles)
          Meanwhile jingle on!


  13. dogear6 / Dec 13 2014 1:14 am

    Enjoy your break! You’ll be back before you know it. I think you’re wise to keep your priorities straight and there’s only so much time.

    Have a Merry Christmas! Tell RC to lay off Molly or Santa won’t play nice.



    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 5:19 pm

      Molly is thrilled at the prospect of more walks (Sunny and mild today, but yuck ahead). RC is thrilled at the prospect of getting meals on time.
      There is just so much time, and hopefully this will give enough slack to allow some posting and time to catch up reading other blogs. It’s always nice to walk the neighborhood and see what’s going on.
      Thanks for stopping by – Jingle all the way!


  14. PiedType / Dec 13 2014 5:07 am

    Wishing your and yours a Very Merry!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 5:23 pm

      Now that I’ve cut myself a little slack (and this hacking cold is better) things should be a little merrier….now if I can just figure out how to turn off comments…may be contacting you about that.
      (That system from CA bringing snow? Wild Suzy’s pix of Boulder show bare ground there. Very mild and 70 here today – already been out…yuck moving in late tomorrow. Enjoy all those grandkids now out of school. Will be wandering your way shortly!)
      Thanks for stopping by and Jingle on!


      • PiedType / Dec 13 2014 6:07 pm

        Everything you ever wanted to know about turning off comments, whether all of them or individually, is here:

        Yes, high clouds are moving in here now, but they’re saying what little snow we’re likely to get (1-4 inches) won’t come till tomorrow night. We’ve had several beautiful days in the 60s here.

        Holler “Ho, ho, ho” when you pass through, and have a safe trip.


        • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 13 2014 7:33 pm

          Thanks. I think I found the general setting that will work, but I do need to read this.(I’m a very lazy WP blogger. Just let me write and post and do basic stuff. Always impressed by you guys that tweak and do the fancier stuff)
          (Sounds picture perfect there! We are stuck here….is asking for beach weather/sun just too much to ask if we have to be here? You get snow…Sunday we get 2 days of rain that day…hope Molly can get out Tues and Wed before the next one. UGH…but more time to nap and read blogs, right?)
          Thanks again for your help . Merry merry on


  15. aFrankAngle / Dec 13 2014 9:11 pm

    Blogger guilt is real Interestingly, we (hosts) put more pressure on ourselves while being very understanding to the others. In other words, (as a whole) we don’t take our own advice very well.

    Blog breaks are good and there are multiple ways to doing them. Total getaways have a place, but I did enjoy not posting & spending time visiting others. Very refreshing!

    Meanwhile, enjoy your break and the holidays! …. and thanks for the party plug!

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 14 2014 12:57 am

      We’ll see how this goes. Needed a bit of breathing room. Cold turkey might be difficult unless traveling or skiing!
      The party is still on! Everybody head on over to Frank’s!
      Thanks for wrapping up a comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Sun / Dec 14 2014 6:57 pm

    A blessed Christmas & maybe, if you have Superman willpower, 🙂 you could run the comments without responding like I see how some big blog stars do…The Pioneer Woman, for example. Ok…nuff on that. Enjoy your guilt free holiday!!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 14 2014 8:43 pm

      Now there’s an idea…which may happen if I don’t take time to see how to turn off comments….nice trail today! Cloudy, but mild and dry! Thanks for shining up the comment pile

      Liked by 1 person

      • Sun / Dec 14 2014 10:27 pm

        you turn off comments by switching off the tab below your edit post page under the heading Discussion. hope that helps. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  17. jubilare / Dec 17 2014 5:00 pm


  18. olganm / Dec 20 2014 5:33 pm

    It’s a good idea. I have a friend coming for a visit and I was thinking about programming posts but then worried I wouldn’t be able to reply to comments. That sounds like the perfect plan.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 20 2014 5:50 pm

      Appreciate you stopping by. Putting comments on pause has really helped. Not so much self inflicted pressure. Less guilt. No hurt reader’s feelings of being ignored. More time to read other blogs – and books – and enjoy life.
      (Go to left sidebar for “Posts”. Next click the”ALL POSTS” option. Hover over the chosen post/post draft title’s and look for “Quick Edit”to click. Then look to the right and there’s a small box to check about comments for a single post. Easiest to turn comments on individual posts off there)
      Wishing you the all the fun and joy of the season. Merry merry on to jingle.



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