The Benefits of Having a Family Blog
What an era to be alive. We live in an age of unparalleled information, technology, and opportunity. While that can feel overwhelming at times, it’s also pretty exciting; and it offers a bunch of advantages for families from so different standpoints. With the power of smart phones, tablets, and computers getting ever bigger, more families are turning to the internet not only for entertainment and information, but also to share their lifestyles with the masses in a way that has never been able to be done before. Running a family blog is a growing trend that shows no signs of slowing down in our time. With several websites offering free or very cheap blogging platforms, almost anyone can set up a blog in a template and style that suits their needs and lifestyle. So why are more and more households catching on to this new trend? Well, the answers are pretty simple.
Staying in Touch
Some statistics report that only about 40% of people remain in the town they were born and raised in. That means a whopping 60% of Americans will pick up their roots and search for greener pastures elsewhere. Some families are chasing employment opportunities, some are simply either escaping or embracing the hustle and bustle of big city life. Whatever the reason, this bring with it a sense of isolation for many families that may strive to stay more connected with the ones they left behind. Having a family blog is a great way to keep everyone important in your life updated on the day-to-day happenings of your family. Many families find that the ability to blog about their life keeps them in touch with relatives and friends that don’t live close by in a more intimate way than social media outlets like Facebook or Instagram. More than just a repository for vacation photos, blog’s can help you document and share the little details that make your family special and unique.
Great for Keeping a Family Record
It may not seem like it when you’re wadding through a house full of toys and the dirty laundry is spilling into the hallway, but these little life moments will pass by faster than you can imagine. Having a family blog is a great way to maintain a record of all the ups and downs of your family’s history. One day when your kids go off to college, you’re going to appreciate being able to sit down and click through all of the highlights, (and low points), of your family’s time together. You can think of it as an in-depth journal for the entire family; capturing the big game, Christmas mornings, and that time the dog tore the couch apart while you were out at dinner.
Free Photo Album
American families take pictures; a lot of pictures. In generations that came before us, that usually meant holding friends and family hostage in a dark room while you clicked through the rotary slide projector of your family trip to the Grand Canyon. Thankfully (for everyone), it isn’t that difficult anymore. Transferring photos from either your smart phone, tablet, or digital camera has never been easier. Simply upload them onto your family blog and invite distant friends and relatives to check them out, sans the dark room. With the ability to create individual postings or tabs, organizing your photo albums has never been easier either. You can even have tabs for individual family members so you’re able to document what each person took pictures of, a great way to see the world through your children’s eyes.
It’s a Great Way to Look Back at How Far You’ve Come
If you’d have asked me 10 or 15 years ago to predict what my family’s life would look like in 2018, I would not have come close to what it actually is. That’s because no matter how we carefully we plan, life has a way of changing the script on us without much warning. Keeping a family blog is not only a fun way to document the present memories, it’s also a great forum for looking back on the old memories. Because you can add text to your post, its even better than just keeping a photo album because you’re able to relive the thoughts and feelings that accompanied each memory as well.
Now, because what you blog is going to open your private life up to the general public, there are some tips that can ensure that your blog isn’t going to make you a target of ridicule or judgement.
Decide How Private You Want it to Be
Depending on the blogging platform you use, you’ll be able to select whether or not you want your family blog to be available to the general public or just those friends and family that you choose. Be sure to look at what the privacy settings are, even if it means slow-walking grandma through the steps to find your family’s blog page.
Be Mindful of What You Share
Not everyone in your family probably remembers that time Jimmy got car sick on the big vacation road trip with the same fondness, Jimmy especially. Be sure that what you post is something that doesn’t reveal things that family members may find embarrassing or uncomfortable. A family blog is also not the best place to air family dirty laundry. Are you feuding with a cousin or sibling? Think hard about expressing your side of the story on your family blog as it can just cause more harm than good. That doesn’t mean that your blog has to be a constant stream of roses and rainbows, only that some things are better left private or just between the people involved.
Be Ready for Criticism
Most blogs have areas where comments can be added by visitors. This is a great way to hear what your friends and family think about that block party you hosted last week, but it’s also a great way to open yourself up to unwanted criticism. A lot like being mindful of what you post, this can be part and parcel with running your own blog, you might need a thick skin even from friends and family. Our own family has a way of doing things that is totally unlike any of our family and friends. It doesn’t mean that we are ashamed of the things we do, like co-sleeping or the video games our kids play, but it does mean that if we put it out there in the form of a blog, we have to be ready to field the opinions of anyone that chooses to remark on it. Chances are that you’re on Facebook or some other social media platform already anyway, so you’re probably familiar with how this works. Some people just feel the need to offer unsolicited advice, and if you blog then you’re going to have to brace for it; or, turn off the commenting feature on your blog posts and make them “read only”.
At the end of the day, keeping a family blog offers a lot of potential for very little risk, provided that you follow some easy guidelines. You can not stop the slow march of time, but with a blog, you can at least keep a record of it. Whether you want to keep family and friends that live away from you in the loop, or you just want to have a record of the life your family has lived, a family blog is a great resource available to us that our predecessors couldn’t even dream of.