Friday, January 28, 2011

Mormon mommy blogs

Last year, I started reading the NieNie dialogues and it really impacted my life. Ridiculous, right? How a blog can impact your life? Well, it happened.

I was in a difficult phase, in which I was overworking myself and focusing way too much on the wrong things. NieNie showed me a glimpse of a life in which she made time for the important things: appreciating her husband, going on weekly dates, running and doing yoga, making delicious vegetarian meals for her four kids, making her house and life beautiful with crafts and art. It was a stark contrast to my life: not making time or appreciating the relationships in my life, not making exercise and cooking a priority, not beautifying life but working myself like crazy for things that weren't even fulfilling!

I read an article that expresses the beauty of "mormon mommy blogs" very well and I think in part expresses my fascination too. Here is the link and here are my favorite quotes:

Their lives are nothing like mine -- I'm your standard-issue late-20-something childless overeducated atheist feminist -- yet I'm completely obsessed with their blogs.

"They have lovely homes, picture-perfect kids, loving, super-attentive husbands, and things seem very normal and calm," writes a commenter named BrookeD, who admits to reading five Mormon blogs daily.

To read Mormon lifestyle blogs is to peer into a strange and fascinating world where the most fraught issues of modern living -- marriage and child rearing -- appear completely unproblematic. This seems practically subversive to someone like me, weaned on an endless media parade of fretful stories about "work-life balance" and soaring divorce rates and the perils of marrying too young/too old/too whatever.

Indeed, Mormon bloggers like Holbrook make marriage and motherhood seem, well, fun. Easy. Joyful. These women seem relaxed and untouched by cynicism. They throw elaborate astronaut-themed birthday parties for their kids and go on Sunday family drives to see the fall leaves change and get mani-pedis with their friends. They often have close, large extended families; moms and sisters are always dropping in to watch the kids or help out with cake decorating. Their lives seem adorable and old-fashioned and comforting.

But the basic messages expressed in these blogs -- family is wonderful, life is meant to be enjoyed, celebrate the small things -- are still lovely. And if they help women like me envision a life in which marriage and motherhood could potentially be something other than a miserable, soul-destroying trap, I say, "Right on."

NieNie's colorful walls, from one of her oldest posts here

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