for the archives

A few weeks ago, a poet-and-church friend who is a faithful reader of Top of JC’s Mind asked if I would like to get in touch with a friend of hers who is involved with a local historical society. Their historical society is joining with others in New York State to assemble an archive related to the pandemic. My friend thought that my posts about being in the vaccine trial might be appropriate for the archive.

It turned out that the archiving project was interested in my vaccine trials posts and any others that dealt with living in the time of COVID. I had sent the vaccine posts first. Then, I worked my way through my blog archive, copying the links to other pandemic related posts.

I knew that I wrote about the impact of COVID-19 quite a lot, but I was surprised at how long the list of posts was – fifty-six posts, from late February through September 11, in addition to the handful of vaccine ones. I joked with the archivist about it being either “an embarrassment of riches or just an embarrassment!” Since then, any time I write about our pandemic experiences I send her the link.

I had asked her how they were preserving the archive. She said that, while they do keep links on their computer, they are printing the materials for posterity. Archival technologies tend to come and go but paper lasts for a very long time.

It’s humbling to think that, decades from now, some future historian might stumble across some of my posts and be able to glean some insights about what it has been like dealing with these fraught times in our communities in upstate New York. First person contemporaneous accounts are highly sought sources for historians and documentarians and I would be honored if my posts are able to assist someone with their research some-year in the future.

all stuffed up

There is so much going on and so many posts I wish I were writing – if only there was a way for my thoughts to magically appear in writing.

I think that common cold viruses must be regional because, when we visited London, all the people in our family who have been living in the US got hit especially hard.

My spouse B and I have had to cancel much of what we had hoped to do this week and are nowhere near full operational capacity. We are planning a simple Christmas this year, which is good because there isn’t time or energy for more. I’ll try to get some catch-up posts in as I can.

JC

Faceversary

Facebook helpfully told me today that I joined ten years ago.

I initially joined because the Smith College Alumnae Chorus was planning to use it as a primary means of communication among our far-flung membership. It didn’t work out that way, but it did get me to join.

I admit that some things about it really annoy me, especially that my newsfeed leaves out so many posts that I would like to see from my friends. I also, of course, am appalled that Facebook was co-opted in the misinformation attack by Russians and others in the lead-up to the 2016 US presidential election.

Still, I am sticking with it to stay connected to in-person friends and relatives and a handful of friends that I made through Facebook and feel close to, even though we have never met in person.

I also appreciate the chance to have a Facebook page for Top of JC’s Mind. I recently (finally) got to 100 likes. Okay, I only have 101 now, but I would appreciate some more if anyone wants to pop over there using the link. 😉

Will Facebook be around in another ten years? Will I still be a part of it if it is? No one knows…
*****
Join us for Just Jot It January! Today’s pingback link is here:  https://lindaghill.com/2019/01/22/jusjojan-2019-daily-prompt-jan-22nd/
More information and prompts here: https://lindaghill.com/2018/12/31/what-is-just-jot-it-january-2019-rules/

1000 followers!

Today, I reached 1000 followers!

And, yes, usual caveats of how followers does not equal readers, and some people are counted twice if they follow by email or on WordPress and also like or follow my Facebook page, etc.

This does give me an opportunity to thank all the visitors to Top of JC’s Mind, whether you visit once or often, follower or not, commenter or not.

For the record, 1,023 posts since the first on September 13, 2013. I know many bloggers would find almost five years to reach 1000 followers unconscionably slow/lazy/unacceptable, but I am more shocked to have made it this far. I am not one to check stats very often. Or someone who has been able to blog the “right way.” While I have had periods of diligently reading, commenting, and following other blogs both for edification and to garner more readers myself, as life has gotten more complicated, I have had to concentrate on posting myself and haven’t even been able to do that as consistently as I would like.

All this makes me that much more appreciative of my readers, especially the handful that have reached out and told me that it is all okay, that they believe I am worth waiting for. So, I will keep blogging, however imperfectly, with your encouragement.

With thanks,
Joanne

do-it-yourself 2016 summary

Once upon a time, I think I got a year-end summary from WordPress that compared how many people visited the site to various buildings or transportation modes, like trains. You could share it to your blog.

I assumed that WordPress sent us an email with a link to our personal information, although I didn’t remember. I have been on the lookout, though.

I finally searched for my 2015 summary and realized that I had the info well before now. I started searching and found out that, unfortunately, WordPress is not sending out year-end summaries for 2016.

As a (less fancy and engaging) substitute, I am taking a (rare) look at my stats page to share a bit.

In 2016, Top of JC’s Mind had 226 posts, which garnered 7,507 views from 3,578 visitors from 62 countries.  (Or thereabouts, given that people who read my blog via email don’t show up in my stats.) The United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada were the top three countries.

The top posts were:
Shock 
crying does not help dry eyes
Poem: Crowning Glory
Feeling the Bern in Binghamton
the legacy of Father James
April 8

It’s a fairly eclectic list, albeit a bit heavy on the personal trauma scale, but that was the kind of year that 2016 was.

I want to thank everyone reading this post and everyone who visited Top of JC’s Mind in 2016.

And thank you to Linda for once again motivating me to get off to a good, energetic start in January with Just Jot It January. No promises, but I’ve made every day so far…
*****
Linda is hosting Just Jot It January again this year. Join us! Details here:  https://lindaghill.com/2017/01/06/jusjojan-daily-prompt-jan-617/

jjj-2017

 

New Facebook Friend!

I won’t be sharing my most important jot of the day here because it was a private note.

I logged in to Facebook in the middle of the day to find that a friend from my college years had sent me a friend request! We had not seen each other in over thirty years, so I was very pleased to be back in contact with him.

I immediately accepted the friend request, quickly checked his recent posts on his timeline, and sent him a message  – in which I attempted to briefly summarize how my family and I are doing these days.

I managed to restrain myself from asking him to like my blog page, but I don’t mind asking all you Jotters! 😉  If you are so inclined, my page is here. Thanks for putting up with my shameless self-promotion!
*****
Join us for Linda’s Just Jot It January! It’s simple and fun. Find out more here:  https://lindaghill.com/2017/01/05/jusjojan-daily-prompt-jan-5th17/

jjj-2017

thanks

Today is Thanksgiving Day in the United States. Despite the difficult year, I have much for which to be thankful.

One of them is you! I am thankful for my readers, whether you visit once or on a regular basis.

As regular visitors know, 2016 has been a difficult, complicated year for me and I have not been able to read and comment on other blogs on a regular basis, as good bloggers do.

Despite that, I have now surpassed 800 followers. Thanks! I so appreciate your support.

The follower number is not the whole story. I am also surprised at the number of in-person or Facebook friends who tell me that they read my blog, even though they never comment, follow, or like, which tend to be things that other bloggers are inclined to do. I so appreciate your support, especially during this busy time when personal correspondence is among the many things being set aside in deference to tasks that must be done in person. (A reminder to Facebook users, you can find my FB page here.)

I wish everyone a wonderful day, whether it is a holiday for you or not.

All days are better with gratitude and thanksgiving.

a note of thanks

I am somewhat shocked to discover that I have reached 750 followers, including just over 600 from WordPress alone.

I am immensely grateful to all followers, readers, and commenters who are visiting Top of JC’s Mind these days as I continue my less-than-ideal blogging practice.

When Grandma died unexpectedly in March, I knew there would be some disruption in my usual routine of posting and visiting/commenting on other blogs, but I couldn’t know at the time how draining the aftermath of that loss would be or how many other losses, changes, and complications would ensue.

The current state of affairs in the world hasn’t helped.

I have struggled to get back to posting on a somewhat regular basis. I am doing almost no reading and commenting still, which feels odd. It isn’t that I can’t come up with the time; it’s more that I can’t muster the brainpower and concentration.

I thank you for your patience and understanding. I have given up projecting when I may be back to visiting you all and re-engaging.

Some of you have assured me that it is okay to take my time, to do what I need to do, that everything will work out eventually.

Please continue to save a little room for me in a corner of WordPress.

Someday, I’ll be dropping back in.

 

SoCS: Mother’s Day

So, I have been absent from SoCS for weeks – and the reason has to do with a parent.

Specifically, my spouse’s mom, whom I refer to on my blog as Grandma.

Grandma passed away unexpectedly on March 22nd and tomorrow will be our first Mother’s Day without her.

I am very, very grateful to still have both of my parents here; we will be having Mother’s Day brunch with them tomorrow.

My husband, known on my blog as B, has no parents left at all now. We lost his dad almost eleven years ago.

Since Grandma’s death, I have posted very little. (There are some posts about her death and things that have happened since, but nowhere near the number of posts I usually make.) I have done almost no reading of others’ blogs and almost no commenting. I wish I could say that this return to SoCS marked a sea change – that I would be back to my usual posts in Linda’s SoCS and One-liner Wednesday, my usual level of posting at Top of JC’S Mind, visiting dozens of blogs a day, and writing comments.

I wish that, but I know it is not reality.

There is still a ton of tasks that need my attention.

And, in happier news, our younger daughter T is about to graduate with a master’s degree. We expect her to be moving back home to job search, so I need time for her, too.

I hope that all my blog-community friends are hanging in there and having a good time. I also hope that those of you who are blessed to have a parent still living will make an extra effort to contact them and to show that you care.

Because, someday, you may not still have that opportunity.
*****
Linda’s prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday this week is “apparent/a parent”. Come join us! Find out how here:  https://lindaghill.com/2016/05/06/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-may-716/

SoCS badge 2015