Big Time

December 13th, 2012

So hey, since moving Allie to her own room she, ah, sleeps. Quite a bit. Gets up once, maybe twice, to eat IF THAT, and once again, I’m like, well, shit. Turns out she just wanted her own damned space, but also, ah, she wanted to sleep on her belly. This makes me VERY FRETFUL and I keep thinking it’s terribly foolish, even though EVERYONE DOES IT JUST FINE and she’s even getting there on her own, and I couldn’t stop her if I tried, but please, remember, I am a person who kept the house at 55 to stave off SIDS with Samantha.

So the thing is, with everyone in bed by 8 at the latest, I suddenly have my evenings free, and by “evenings” I mean two hours before I SHOULD be in bed. And you guys, this feels really, really luxurious. I suddenly feel like I should be taking up a hobby. Knitting has crossed my mind. Quilting! I could quilt! By 2017, I could have half a square completed, right?

Then I realized that perhaps it’s time to get back to basics — writing here, as I mentioned is a priority, as is, ah, personal hygiene. So before I whip out the Featherweight (AND I WILL), perhaps I should work on showering every day and keeping those legs silky smooth, HMMMMM?

I sort of lost my mind earlier about sponsored posts, and I’m STILL kind of losing it. Blogs– no, PEOPLE! — I used to read and love have become shill factories — caricatures of themselves talking about THE cutest purse insert (fo’ real) and heeeey, they just happened to pay me and here! I have some to give away! And this is fine — great, even! — if it’s a one off thing, but by the FIFTEENTH sponsored post in, say, seventeen days, I kind of think they’re full of shit, and I become five years old and want to BOYCOTT every last one of the products on their list.

(Truth: I did a campaign with Huggies a few years ago, and it paid very well, and I GET IT. I also already used Huggies — swear! — and like their stuff quite a bit, even though they are no longer paying me to say so. But if they approached me now? Nope. I don’t use it anymore, because Allie has super-special buttocks that will only work in cloth or Seventh Generation, and look, I don’t want to knock Seventh Gen, but I HATE THEM. They feel like paper! So please don’t contact me, Seventh Gen. I hate your products. I USE THEM OUT OF NECESSITY.)

(If you are reading this, please go Schooner Tuna on us and lower your damned prices. That’s why I switched to cloth, you know.)

(I will never do another sponsored campaign again, is my guess. Even though I used the product, IT FELT SLIMY.)

I digress! So! All that being said, I had a funny conversation with longtime reader-turned-friend, Suki (this is where I wonder if Suki is aware that we’re friends. I think of you all — people who’ve commented here for years and years — as friends. Do you know this? Carla Hinkle! Heidi! Christine! So many others! We’re FRIENDS.) (Suki gets special status because she introduced me to my real-life friend Kate, who is her sister-in-law even though Suki and I have never met. Kate and I HAVE met, obviously.)

ANYWAY, Suki mentioned the number of products she bought that bloggers mentioned and then uncomfortably added that she totally now gets why companies try to harness that shit. And it’s TRUE. But isn’t it also true that the second you sell out once (or maybe more than once, O God?), your faith in their ACTUAL recommendations is completely gone? I don’t know. It’s an interesting to me, only because I don’t believe a damned thing a sponsored post says, pretty much ever, but at the same time, I get why people do them, because y’all, trust, it pays pretty damned well if you’ve got any kind of traffic.

THIS IS ALL A VERY LONG WAY OF GETTING TO THIS PLACE. Which is, here, a few totally not-sponsored product-related thoughts:

1) So look, I’m not going to dwell on this, but I tried to cloth diaper Allie last night and HAHAHAHA NO. NO. NO. I am stuck buying one pack of Seventh Gen diapers for nighttime, because, oh dear shit, I used a fitted (GMD Cloth-Eez Workhorse) with a bunch of inserts (cotton, hemp and a fleece stay-dry) and a wool cover (Kissas Wool Lovers). And not only did she sleep like hell, but I went in there at 1:30 and the room. THE ROOM. It smelled like a literal, no-shit SHEEP PEN. It smelled like WET, HOT, MOIST ANIMAL. It was all I could do not to barf, and I had to go in there TWICE MORE. TWICE MORE TO THE SHEEP DEN. And y’all. Unlike most of America, I’ve worked on actual farms and sheared sheep with my own two hands, so I KNOW WHAT WET SHEEP SMELL LIKE.

2) Living Proof Prime. I have screeched about the wonders of this product all over Twitter, and it’s true, I love it. I LOVE IT. It holds my hair style through a second day and it stops it from getting too . . . oily, giving me a second day without washing and ANYTHING that saves me from having to take a ten-minute shower and cutting into my sleep time is THE BOMB. Because I am just that lazy. So it’s awesome, and you should get some and no one paid me to say that, promise.

Incidentally, I found this product when my friend Dara showed up at my house and I ASKED HER IF SHE HAD JUST COME FROM THE SALON. It’s a cliche! Salon hair at home! But seriously, it’s awesome stuff.

3) However! And this is a giant however, for those of you who have purchased this miracle product: It builds up on your hair pretty freakin’ fast. Within a few weeks of use, your hair feels kind of coated and waxy and it just sort of stops working. So! You have to give your hair a break, not use it for a few days, and in the interim, use a good clarifying shampoo. And thanks to Liz, I bought LUSH Big, and I love it, although the price tag made me want to gouge my eyes out and the sample of conditioner (a bar!) confounded me. And that shit STRIPS your hair of any and all gunk. I mean, it’s SEA SALT, and it really does work. My hair was DEEPLY CLEANSED to the point of feeling like hay after just one wash, but it got all the crap out.

I have hair down. Now someone needs to help me figure out how to apply eyeshadow.

Note: none of those links are affiliates, so buy with impunity.

Happy weekend!

*Peter Gabriel.

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Entry Filed under: Alex the Grace,Diapergate,General jackassery

56 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Anyabeth  |  December 13th, 2012 at 10:41 pm

    You didn’t ask and I know you hate microfiber but maybe a pocket stuffed with hemp? We made that work for a very long time.

  • 2. NGS  |  December 13th, 2012 at 11:38 pm

    My blog has no ads and it’s never made me a cent. I wonder if I would feel differently about my seething rage of sponsored content if I did make money on my own site. Then I feel like a giant hypocrite because I want people to make money on their blogs, of course I do, but I don’t want people to sell themselves out and shill some crappily constructed polyester nightmare from Shabby Apple just because everyone else does. (Note: I am the not-so- proud owner of such a crappily constructed dress from SA.)

    I don’t know. But if I ever link to anything on my blog, I don’t get paid for it, either!!

  • 3. Home Sweet Sarah  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:07 am

    So you tweeted that earlier, about the sponsored posts, and I retweeted, because I AGREEEEEE, but then I felt like a jerk, because I totally won a tote bag from a GGC giveaway a couple weeks ago. It’s not like I go trolling for giveaways (quite the opposite — it’s just that I had been eying a LE tote for MONTHS, but wouldn’t/couldn’t pull the trigger because of money, then entered the GGC giveaway and WON, which I thought was quite fortuitous), but you know, if giveaways are your then, then okay. (This is me giving carte blanche to GGC, who can basically do no wrong in my eyes.) AnyWAY, it’s everyone else who bugs me. On the one hand, good for them! Get yo’ self PAID! I won’t read it anyway! But on the other hand, OMG, ANOTHER ONE?! Really? We all KNOW you don’t use that product, opinions are NOT your own, stop with the fucking charade. So as you can see, I’m torn about it. I go through this every year, so I think this holiday season makes it worse. When’s December 26th?

  • 4. Carla Hinkle  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:21 am

    As @antiangie said on Twitter, I promise 100% I will never, ever promote anything on my non-existent blog. This is the joy of being able to Talk the Talk without ever needing to Walk the Walk.

    I did win a pair of Naya shoes from Jennie/She Likes Purple, but hey, those shoes are AWESOMESAUCE. So.

  • 5. Ginger  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:31 am

    My kid always needed his own space too. Slept great on his own, like crap when close by anyone else. I STILL check on his breathing before I go to bed…

    My thoughts on sponsored content are complicated and…more wordy than a single comment box will allow me (and not nearly interesting enough), but I don’t know how much longer the blogging as business bubble can possibly last. Because companies want more and more of bloggers because they see that it’s not always a great ROI, and readers? Well, readers want less and less of that stuff. We all started reading blogs for people and their stories and opinions and humor and whatever…not their commercials. It’s totally one thing to read reviews, or unsolicited suggestions, or even the occasional sponsored post, but the constant never ending stream of OMG make it stop sponsored posts is…enough.

  • 6. L.  |  December 14th, 2012 at 1:00 am

    Have you looked at movement monitors? The under-mattress ones? Even though you will get a couple of false alarms, and you will die–your heart and lungs will fullSTOP for the two seconds it takes to run and check–they are fairly accurate and paranoia-soothing. We couldn’t get through belly sleep without one.

  • 7. Jess  |  December 14th, 2012 at 7:04 am

    I totally agree about the sponsored posts. I feel betrayed by the “big” blogs who do sponsorships because they already had me as a friend (in my mind at least) and then they exploit that relationship. And now there are all these much smaller blogs cropping up that seem to only do the sponsored stuff. I started following some bloggers who are local to me, because – hey, fun RL people who blog- but it turns out that I know nothing about them except that they “like” a certain kind of granola bar. Or they got to go to the ice sculpture thing in DC for a day, or their effing kid got braces if they blog about it. These aren’t becoming my friends, they’re annoying.

  • 8. Courtney  |  December 14th, 2012 at 7:55 am

    Eyeshadow, maybelline’s 24 hour color tatoo. Goes on easy, stays on all day looking good, the gold and bronze are great neutrals, it’s $8 a pop, for me, eyeshadow perfection.

  • 9. Elissa  |  December 14th, 2012 at 8:50 am

    Have you read “A Visit from the Good Squad” by Jennifer Egan? It’s a good read and I’d recommend it, especially if you like a sort of fragmented narrative that gradually comes together. Anyways, the end of the book deals with selling out in a really interesting way that I think connects up with what you’re saying here. Again, so glad you’re back to blogging!

  • 10. April  |  December 14th, 2012 at 8:56 am

    My kids both slept better on their own, and only get in my bed to snuggle and/or wake me up. I don’t mind sponsored posts but I don’t actually listen to them, if that makes sense. If it’s an interesting product that I hadn’t heard of it will make me research it a little. I don’t take the blogger’s word for it but I do like knowing about new things.

    I have no offers, no sponsors, and not much traffic. I’m good that way (well. I’d like more traffic but I’m good without the rest)

  • 11. Katie  |  December 14th, 2012 at 8:57 am

    I read blogs, like yours, that never do sponsored posts and I appreciate that. I also read blogs, like GGC and Amalah that do sponsored posts, but also produce a TON of original content that I love. So long as a blogger doesn’t start doing all sponsored, all the time, I could care less. No one is making me read the sponsored posts. I can ignore them completely.

    I also think that the income that these posts bring in is what allows many of the bloggers I follow to produce tons of original content. Because they are not working 9-5 jobs. If they did, they would no longer have time to update their blog daily, which is a huge time commitment. So, I do not begrudge anyone an income-producing sponsored post once every couple of weeks (or even more at holidays) if it results in gobs of great original content the rest of the time.

    And, I moved my baby from an attached co-sleeper to her own crib at 7 months and she all of a sudden slept like a damn miracle. So, I hear you on that one!

  • 12. jonniker  |  December 14th, 2012 at 8:58 am

    Elissa, I did read it and I loved it, but I wish I could REMEMBER the ending of the book you’re talking about! It’s been a while.

    Also, NGS, I do have ads. I like them. I get a little pocket money and it seems relatively harmless. Interestingly, one of the only contractual conditions of my agreement with Federated Media is that I do no sponsored content. None.

    I am exhausted by the argument that we are somehow supposed to let this stuff happen, because hey! People have to make money! And that’s true. This is a hobby for me. Not all hobbies are meant to make money, and it’s a privilege I have to be able to do this, but I have a lot of other privileges that are far greater, and I’d say most of the blogosphere is pretty fucking privileged as it is.

    KATIE: Our comments crossed. You have a very generous view of it, and I don’t disagree with you. I read Amalah, too, and I don’t begrudge her the occasional sponsorship, either. But I also don’t think she does it badly or too, too often. She also makes an effort in her non-sponsored content to be a real person, which is more than a lot of the all-sponsored people do.

    But. There is a big but here, and it’s integrity. There’s a line that a LOT of people cross, which is to say they do too many sponsored posts and do sponsored posts on questionable products. It’s a hard thing to talk about eloquently and distinguish, right? Some people do it well, some people do it in a terribly disingenuous way that violates and betrays the relationship and goodwill they’ve built with readers for years.

    I guess I also take issue with the notion that the burden of revenue modeling for the blogger is put upon the reader. Ads I understand, but this new model of bloggers-as-spokespeople (haaa, new, because I’m in 1999) is really grating. These aren’t celebrities who separate their personal life from their professional work — Jennifer Lopez shilling for Feria isn’t going to make me NOT watch her next movie, because that movie isn’t HER. But bloggers are selling THEMSELVES and their, well, personalities, for products that they may or may not actually believe in. That makes me squirm.

    I resent being made to feel like I should just put up with crap that is, at times, legitimately insulting, because it’s MY responsibility to make sure bloggers get paid. No. It isn’t.

  • 13. Elita  |  December 14th, 2012 at 9:47 am

    Totally feel you on the blogging thing. I have one or two standing sponsored posts I do (Children’s Place always lets me shop for their new season, for example) but for the most part, the blog was me, my opinions, providing research and information. I actually don’t mind the occasional sponsored posts from people like Amalah, but I hate this new crop of “review” bloggers who do nothing but shill and do giveaways. Of course people read, because who wouldn’t take the 10 seconds to leave a comment if you might win an item worth $50 or more? But no one is reading your content, I promise. They are only entering your giveaways. And I doubt VERY HIGHLY that any of this turns into sales for the companies so I seriously do not get why they do it. I bought something on the recommendation of a blogger once and the product was shit. Total shit. And it was an affiliate link too, I think. After that I said never again.

  • 14. Nimble  |  December 14th, 2012 at 9:58 am

    I read blogs because I want to get a glimpse of a real life. I’d like to hear why you didn’t sleep well last night and the way you love your partner but hate the socks in the living room. The blogs that are shiny pretty all the time turn me off to begin with. And those are generally the sponsored-post heavy ones.

  • 15. Nimble  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:01 am

    Forgot the kid sleeping in the crib part. My first baby wanted to sleep on us. She would fuss in the crib and once picked up sigh with relief and go right to sleep on mama’s chest. Imagine my surprise when I noticed that my second baby was leaning toward the crib to go back to bed after a night feeding. She couldn’t talk yet but she was clearly indicating, “Put me in my bed, woman, I’m tired!” She’s 8 now and she still loves her bed.

  • 16. Katie  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:04 am

    I agree completely about the integrity /line-crossing thing. It is like that famous line about pornography: I know it when I see it. The scales tip pretty quickly on some blogs and I just stop reading.

    And I think your point about the bloggers selling their personalities is right on and is food for thought for me. I don’t know enough about the business models around blogs to know whether there is a better way to do all of this either. I just know that if a blogger keeps it real 75% of the time, I will likely keep reading.

  • 17. Cherie Beyond  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:22 am

    I always feel like I have so much to say after one of your posts. Look! A list!

    1) My daughter had the strongest personal space bubble when she was a baby. She would basically scream until placed in the bassinet, at which point she would contentedly stretch out her arms and conk out for hours at a time. Now that she’s five and all pointy elbows and bony butt, she wants to be on me all the time.

    2) My threshold for sponsored posts is low and gets lower all the time. While I agree that Amalah does them well, she’s pushing it a bit far lately, I think.

    I mind less if I know the blogger needs the money. There’s one blog I read that’s been heavier on the sponsors lately, but I know she’s had some serious medical bills hit the family so I’m all “Sponsor away, lady! Bring in that cash!” But she also does a lot of good content as well.

    I really don’t understand blogs that are almost all sponsored posts. Who reads those? The same people who go to Tupperware parties? Do they just like being sold stuff? It’s a mystery.

    3) I don’t wash my hair every day. Is that weird? I wash it every third day. It looks dramatically better the second and third day. Four days is too much, though. Trust.

  • 18. Angela (@Aferg22)  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:23 am

    The thing that really bugs me about sponsored posts is when they aren’t up front about it at the beginning. I am reading along about what I think is a sweet moment between mother and child or about a funny story that happened to them the other day, and then… BAM! I realize it’s just a commercial, not a real story! I guess it could be a real story, but it just feels so contrived, and I feel like they have pulled one over on me. I feel duped into caring about their story since it was just to sell me a product. Just tell me what you are doing before I get emotionally invested! It really does bother me much less when I know up front that the content is sponsored, so I can take it with a grain of salt. It’s like meeting a new person who you think could be a really fun friend, and then finding out they just want to invite you to a jewerly party.

    I can be a bit of a sheep, in that I tried the BB cream that everyone loved on Twitter (made my face itchy, unfortunately) and I have seriously thought about trying the miracle hair stuff (anything so I can get more sleep!) I am willing to really listen to opinions about things from someone I consider a “friend”, but I don’t like it when I feel they were dishonest.

    I also don’t like when a whole group of blogs that I read are all talking about the same product/trip/event. That feels even slimier to me, especially by the time I get to the last one, even though the order I end up reading them in is totally random.

    This ended up being a long comment, sorry!

  • 19. Anne  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:30 am

    I don’t seem to read many blogs with sponsored posts anymore, because tipping that balance DOES make me stop reading. I think the only one I read who does any with any regularity is Amalah. Mostly I ignore them, and I can’t think of anything I’ve bought because of a sponsored post.

    But you know what I’ve bought A TON of? Products you or others recommend on Twitter. I have two private shopping lists/wish lists on Amazon, one called “Twitter” and one called “NOPE”, containing, respectively, products my friends rave about and products they hate with a firey passion. So I get the trust thing – I think if I saw genuine-seeming sponsored posts from my friends that I trust I’d totally shell out for the products. But my reader content is proof that I don’t stick around long after that balance tips. I’m not here to read commercials, I’m here to interact with my friends.

  • 20. Auntie G  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:55 am

    1 – My second baby was the WORST sleeper in the WHOLE WORLD OF SLEEPING, until he had to get a head-fixin’ helmet at about 3 months, and promptly refused to sleep in any position except on his tummy, because then he wasn’t bothered by the helmet. I was SUPER nervous but figured the helmet prevented him from a total faceplant into the mattress. Amazingly, he started sleeping for more than 20 minutes at a time…and now, while he’s still a light sleeper, he always sleeps on his tummy.

    2 – I am OVER sponsored posts. I happily read blogs that are ABOUT products, like Style Lush, because that is the PURPOSE of the blog/posts, and I am happy to try things out based on recommendations from bloggers whose lifestyles/hairstyles/style-styles are similar to mine. And I also don’t mind if a regular blog post just mentions x product but isn’t sponsored or doing a giveaway. But the sponsored posts just grate. GRAAAAAAAAAAAAAATE.

  • 21. Karen  |  December 14th, 2012 at 10:56 am

    I bought Living Proof shampoo after you tweeted so earnestly about it, and I do love it. My hair, she is so soft. So thanks for that.

    I’m thankful that none of my favorite blogs have crossed to the other side. What I can’t stand is when seemingly every blog is promoting the same. damn. thing. (WiiU, I’m looking at you.) I get it. Now be quiet.

    So thanks for sticking to what you do, because we all like it. (And now we have great hair.)

  • 22. Cherie Beyond  |  December 14th, 2012 at 11:29 am

    Oh, wait! I had one more point!

    4) Wool covers (and fleece); I do not get these. I tried several times and they always leaked right through pants and pajamas. What is the point of these? Maybe some people like the smell of wet sheep and think pee-butt prints left on floors are cute? Most useless devices ever. We had good luck with BG and Flips overnight, but you know what? No shame in using disposable at night.

  • 23. KeraLinnea  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    I have a three day old blog with two posts and no comments, so worrying about sponsored content is far, far in the future, if ever. But, from my uninformed position, I think that I would pass on doing sponsored posts. I’d rather be able to feel completely legit and honest if I recommend a product. I don’t want to spend even one second wondering if I was fudging the details a bit or glossing over things that should be stated very clearly.

    This is not to say that I have anything against sponsored posts, on a now and then basis. But yeah, if a blog I enjoyed kept having sponsored posts, I would stop reading. One a month would probably not bug me, so long as it wasn’t the only post that month. :) But one a week would grate.

    I really really really want to try that style extender, but I need to know how long a tube of it lasts. If it lasts 3 months, It’s worth 20 bucks to me. If it lasts a month, not so much.

    Finally, eye shadow. I cheat. I buy the Cover Girl or Almay quads that are designed for specific eye colors and just follow the directions. I love them, and I have honest-to-god been complimented on my eye makeup. And I am not naturally talented at makeup–my mother didn’t let me wear it til I was 17, so it didn’t become habit, and I didn’t get the practice other girls did. I didn’t start wearing makeup on a daily basis until I was 30. I’m 37 now. A couple things I’ve learned WRT eyeshadow: Use brushes, not the foam/sponge tipped applicator things, and use a light touch. You can easily put on more if you want a more intense look. It’s a lot harder to take some off.

    I really should have saved this for my blog–this is a freaking novel!

  • 24. natalie  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:55 pm

    I saw your tweet yesterday and responded, but then had to refrain from ANOTHER response because I had so many thoughts on the subject. I think, like Katie above, that where the buck stops with me is if original content is gone. If someone runs a sponsored post now and again, but writes original and GOOD content as they always have (Linda from All and Sundry is a great example of this), I don’t mind at all. If their site becomes nothing BUT sponsored content, I’m gone; this has been happening so often lately that “unsibscribe” is my new default reader action. It’s sad, really, because like you said, you become invested in the person (oddly) and it feels weird to be irritated by something that shouldn’t really be important.

  • 25. Adah  |  December 14th, 2012 at 12:59 pm

    OK, I got a little hung up on the wee bit in your post about blogging friends. I am so curious about this. I don’t blog, but I have been following several blogs for what turns out to be years now. I have become more and more comfortable commenting, but have relegated myself to spectator because it seems like blogging friendships spring up between two people who BOTH blog. Not a blogger and her commenters (but maybe, I have no way of knowing, I guess). Does anyone write about this more somewhere? It’s fascinating. And I love it when I discover when two bloggers are friends (although usually it’s not really that surprising because I will then remember that I found one blogger through the other one’s blog).

  • 26. cck  |  December 14th, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    I wholeheartedly (whole, does someone do, like, a quarter-heartedly?) endorse more writing.

    Also, I recommend pocket diapers. I can’t believe I’m one of those cloth diaper people, but I totes am. Pockets are easier and um, hold more.

  • 27. Artemisia  |  December 14th, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    @NGS – You hated your Shabby Apple outfit? I always pine over their cute clothes but have never been able to bring myself to buy anything. (My proportions make it a gamble.)

    Any recommendations as to cute, well-made clothes?

    Jonniker – I never really had girly girlfriends. I have never had a conversation about lipstick, and I so desperately want to.

    I rely solely on you and Sundry for any and all make-up and hair related stuff recommendations. Thank you!

    (Oh! I also switched to a menstrual cup, thanks to you. GIRLY CONVERSATIONS!!!)

    (Lunette, if anyone is interested.)

  • 28. Artemisia  |  December 14th, 2012 at 1:57 pm

    Sponsored content = getting awkwardly roped into a friend’s — or worse, co-worker’s — Mary Kay “party.”

  • 29. HereWeGoAJen  |  December 14th, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    I am all for my friends getting paid to blog. BUT only if you remain a friend and that means not being only boring stuff. I actually don’t follow anyone that does more than the occasional sponsored post.

    The fact that Ryan sleeps alone already blows my mind. And I will not confess to going to his room last night at three am and waking him up to perform a live baby check.

  • 30. Erica  |  December 14th, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    Man, I’ve been blogging for 2 1/2 years and somehow no money has fallen out of that thing. I’ll just sit tight, I guess.

    Anyone who has an issue with ALLCAPS as a mode of expression has clearly never encountered the sentence “I KNOW WHAT WET SHEEP SMELL LIKE.” Because how else would you say that?

  • 31. Julie  |  December 14th, 2012 at 4:54 pm

    I need to remember never to sip my soda when reading your posts. Because I just got a noseful of carbonation at WET, HOT, MOIST ANIMAL.

  • 32. Sarah Filchak  |  December 14th, 2012 at 6:10 pm

    Oh my, your comments about the cloth diapers made me laugh out loud. And not just chuckle, but really laugh- to the point where my coworker looked up at me like I was a nut. So thank you for putting the image of the sheep pen forever in my head. It was a day brightener!

  • 33. crabby appleseed  |  December 14th, 2012 at 6:52 pm

    I love and adore cloth diapers, but have always used disposables overnight, because absolutely NO form or combination of cloth diapers will keep my children dry through the night. NONE. And when someone suggested wool covers to me, I stupidly tried it. I have no idea what a wet sheep smells like, so when I walked into her room, I thought it smelled like the hobo car on the El. Never again.

    Oh, and I hate sponsored posts. I always skip them, and then I feel really guilty, because here is this blogger providing me with free entertainment and I am not helping pay their bills. Or something, I don’t know. But I never read sponsored posts, even from bloggers I genuinely like, because I think, how can I possibly believe what you’re about to say?

  • 34. jonniker  |  December 14th, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    Adah: Late to this, but dude. So many people I met through reading my blog are my friends, or at least I think they are. I’m not just friends with bloggers online, but people who comment here, Twitter, etc.

    Honestly, the entire — the ENTIRE, and I do not lie — reason I blog is because I love hearing from people and hearing their stories and talking with people I would never meet/know otherwise. So when you guys apologize for long comments, I’m just like, seriously? That’s like apologizing for bringing me cookies. No.

    I think many of my readers have don’t have blogs. I could be wrong. Carla Hinkle up there? Nope. Heidi? Nope. Christine used to, but not anymore (SAD). I email a lot with people who don’t have them.

  • 35. H  |  December 14th, 2012 at 11:42 pm

    Thank you so much for the additional info about Living Proof Prime. After you said you thought it would work on fine curly hair, I purchase it for her for Christmas – and got some free samples! I’ll make sure she uses a clarifying shampoo too. She hates her curls and I’ve noticed she’s started to get lazy about styling it so I hope this will help her style last longer, and therefore minimize her frustration.

    I enjoy your writing, your cute family, your thoughtful and informative posts and your sense of humor and it makes me so happy to know (see #34 above!) that you feel the same way I do. I mean, you’re the blogger and I am not, but my reasons for reading and commenting are exactly the same.

  • 36. Megan  |  December 15th, 2012 at 1:20 am

    Heh. Schooner Tuna. The tuna with a heart.

  • 37. agirlandaboy  |  December 15th, 2012 at 1:27 am

    Hmm. Sigh. My feelings about sponsored posts are complicated.

    (Allow me to take over your comments for a bit, even though I know you’ve heard all this stuff from me before, on the chance that maybe it will make other people think differently about the situation.)

    My feelings about sponsored posts are complicated because I do them and because I need that money and because I pick and choose what I want to support and because sometimes “sponsored” doesn’t mean “post about a product” but simply “post that contains an ad unit” and because I put just as much effort into writing reviews as I do regular posts and because I don’t LIE about stuff just because I’m getting paid. The way I look at it, I’m being paid for space on my site, NOT paid to say glowing things about a company or product I don’t actually endorse. I have never signed on to a campaign that restricted the honesty of my feedback. When people think I’ve been bought, it’s insulting and also simply not true.

    But MONEY. Look: If I can make writing one sponsored post what it would otherwise take me TWO 8-HOUR DAYS to earn working in my profession (I shit you not)–or FOUR MONTHS to make in sidebar ads (especially now that people don’t click through to see the ads anyway)–it’s hardly a contest in my mind. Being able to make X amount in an hour or two means I don’t have to send my infant to daycare all week or lock myself in the home office all weekend so I can spend hours and hours and hours on “honest work” that pays shite. Yes, the sponsored stuff picks up this time of year, and yes, it’s annoying, but yes, it mostly goes away come Jan. 1, and yes, I work extra hard to write twice as much on my site because I want there to be plenty of content that ISN’T sponsored to appease the people who think my sponsored content is completely devoid of any value (which, again, I’d argue with, as I always try to tell a story that would be just as meaningful minus a product mention).

    Overall, though, the backlash against sponsored posts makes me sad because it’s essentially (a) judging people on how they make their money (which, okay, fine, this happens to people in all industries) but also (b) making the statement that “I like you enough to want to read your blog, but not enough for you to get money from it.” I once had a friend call me out for sponsored posts and say I was selling out for something that wasn’t even affecting my bottom line, at which point I sent him numbers that showed how blogging allowed me to support my family when my husband was suddenly unemployed and, man, that shut him up right quick.

    So…I get that people are annoyed–and I TOTALLY get that there are plenty of people who do sponsored posts very, very poorly (one of my side jobs is copy editing sponsored posts, so I see A LOT of them)–but I also wish there would be more sensitivity to the fact that maybe that personal annoyance at having to close the window* on a sponsored post is small in comparison to what that money means to some families.

    *This assumes, of course, that people are DISCLOSING AT THE TOP, which, COME ON, that’s just good common sense at this point.

    Again, I know YOU have heard all this before, Jonna, but I do hope this perspective makes some small difference in the amount of patience people have for this stuff. Aaaaaand…see you again when this flares up next year. :)

  • 38. Erin  |  December 15th, 2012 at 9:18 pm

    The only sponsored posts I ever do are Shutterfly ones when it’s getting to be Christmas card season (though if there is one around the time I am looking at ordering birth announcements, I’ll probably do one then too). And I know they’re annoying. But seeing as I only do one or two a year, I tell myself it’s okay. Especially since fully half my readership is posting the same sponsored posts for the same free holiday cards.

    But I totally get what you’re saying, and I appreciate the bloggers who have separate blogs just for their reviews and sponsored stuff so that I don’t have to read it. And I hope we can still be friends (even though I’ve only “known” you for about as long as Allie has been alive) even though I do a twice-ish-yearly Shutterfly post.

  • 39. Suki  |  December 16th, 2012 at 5:28 pm

    Well, now I feel like a real asshole because I’m just getting around to commenting on this. First off, thanks for thinking of me as a friend, and it’s totally mutual. I figure if I can just say “Jonna” with no explanation to my husband, you count as a friend :). This also means I will be facebook friending you, so fair warning.

    OK, now on to important hair business: how long were you using the prime when this build up issue happened? Was it gradual or all at once? Do you just use the prime or the other Living Proof products? I use a couple of them, so I’m concerned that may accelerate the build up issue. Thanks so much for the head’s up so I don’t believe my ridiculously oily hair has overcome even the miracle potion when it happens.

    After we talked about the the whole commercialization of blogs thing, you had tweeted that you had done a Huggies campaign. While I had forgotten that you had worked with them, I distinctly remember Emily doing something with them because part of her work with them involved raising awareness of diaper need. Embarrassingly, I had never even thought about diaper need prior to that series and was really affected by what I learned. While I may not have been motivated to purchase Huggies by those campaigns (I buy Huggies because they’re cheap at Costco and fit my kid), I was motivated to donate diapers to a diaper bank and talked with a bunch of my friends about the issue. I guess maybe it really is the commercial aspect that turns me off.

  • 40. jodifur  |  December 17th, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Very serious question about Lush Big, because I have been wanting to try it, can you use it on color treated hair? I even went in to the store and asked and the sales person just kind of looked at me like “huh?” I have VERY FINE LIMP HAIR that is also color treated. This is important stuff.

  • 41. Jennifer  |  December 18th, 2012 at 12:44 pm

    I totally agree and wrote something similar the other day. Blogging has become so commercial. Bleh. I love that you still actually write.

  • 42. Joanne  |  December 27th, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    I am on my third cloth diapered child and I can’t use them at night. We get what we call a Hot Boiled Pee Situation and I just can’t do it. My kids are weirdo big time night time peers and just – ugh. I”m with you on that, sister.

  • 43. LeonilaSilvia  |  January 3rd, 2013 at 1:02 am

    I totally agree and wrote something similar the other day. Blogging has become so commercial. Bleh. I love that you still actually write.

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    I tried, but please, remember, I am a person who kept the house at 55 to stave off SIDS with Samantha.

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