That one time…

We had a lovely, young and talented house guest. He had many virtual friends. Many of those friends lived in Seattle and a few of them decided to organize an Instameet. Luck would have it they all came up to our island.

And that is how we ended up there today.

Here are some undeniable facts:

– people who connect through social media and blogging tend to have a lot in common once they meet in real life.

– it is amazing that something as simple as square snaps of daily life can bring people together.

– being a part of an online community, be it blogging or gramming or apps on facebook means a lot to people.

– Instagram is just plain and simple fabulous.

But more then ever before walking around with perfect strangers today trying to capture a fun shot confirmed what has been on my mind a lot lately.

Online life is taking over way too much of our actual life. People have an unhealthy attitude toward social media that seems to be similar to the one we have had with money in the past century. It is all about the numbers, the quantity, the race to win. More, more, more. We look at our stats on our blog, how many comments there are, how many likes on Facebook, how many followers on Twitter. How many people admired our photograph on Instagram.

I met amazing young talent today. Turns out they are all famous and influential Instagramers. Apparently I was the only person on the planet not following them. I watched them plan and execute the perfect shot and publish it, only to have thousands of people instantly like it and wish they could do the same. As they said good bye and left for mainland I was happy to be holding my son’s hand and watching my dog swim. I returned home , helped Little J build a police station with LEGOs and pulled the bins to the curb for morning pick up.

Surely you have noticed lately I have been slow. In returning comments, publishing posts, reading you blogs. Summer is my busiest time of the year, with many photo sessions booked. But the real reason is I feel burned out. Being on Twitter and Instagram is like communicating with 2000 people every day. Impossible! Blogging is like reading a novel every day. Impossible!

At the end of the day what truly matters is family, neighbors and friends. My dog, my horse and the bins I mustn’t forget to take care of. Our health and happiness.

It is all very well to have a lot of people admire ones work and believe in ones talent. It might even feel nice when someone is star struck in your presence. And it certainly must be fun to be young and jump like this.


But I have reached the point where I will gladly take the photo of the Instagramers and bid them farewell.

PS: Thank you all for following me and my work. For sharing my good times, liking my photos, commenting on my blog. Thank you Cindy Urban Pickering for always brightening up my day.
I might either need a nap or more coffee. Or both.

This entry was posted in The good life and tagged , , , .


  1. Mark July 27, 2012 at 00:30 #

    Twitter: Rsimplelives
    Love the honesty here.
    I’ve not stepped one foot into that Instagram pool. I’m sure it’s great and fantastic but I’m also sure I’d become addicted and I just can’t handle any more social media “whatever” right now. So, I won’t go there!
    Try to enjoy your Summer.
    Your Friend, m.
    Mark recently posted..All Swim!

  2. Stasha July 27, 2012 at 00:36 #

    Twitter: PonderingMama
    I don’t know if I’m comfortable meeting all these lovely people in my computer.

    Maybe once if we could get all the local bloggers together. . . That might be nice.

    I think too, with it being summer, everyone has slowed down a bit with comments and blogging and the other social media outlets. . .

    And I think that’s OK. We’re allowed to stop and smell the roses. We’re allowed to put our family first.

    We’re allowed to take breaks and just be.

    Stasha recently posted..Somewhere Along the Way Things Changed

  3. Alison July 27, 2012 at 01:39 #

    Twitter: AlisonSWLee
    I was just thinking, as I was looking at my Instagram feed earlier – wow, this person as 150 likes on a photo of her kid! Who is cute but really? And then I thought to myself, I’m an idiot because I don’t post photos to get likes, I post photos because I like to take them, and they’re MY little journal for me, even if no one likes them. (I do wonder how some, like you, take such fab photos with their phones though, mine always suck)

    Go live your life, go make memories. Online life can never come first.
    Alison recently posted..A Force of His Own

  4. Carrie Hansen Baughcum via Facebook July 27, 2012 at 05:17 #

    No old!!! Experienced, Seasoned (naaa you’re not a steak), accomplished, sophisticated, worldly… wise.

  5. Christie July 27, 2012 at 05:31 #

    Twitter: christineorgan
    Love this post! I have a love-hate relationships with social media. Slowly I have found the ways that seem to work for me and the things that don’t work for me (or that I just can’t seem to figure out). I avoid Twitter unless I am looking for some article ideas for freelance writing projects. And I am just not quick enough, savvy enough, and skilled enough to use Instagram. I have read several posts lately in which people admit that they keep “friends” on Facebook just to keep their numbers up. What is that about?!? Anyway, your post is great and really puts it all in perspective.
    Christie recently posted..The Waiting Place

  6. Iza Trapani July 27, 2012 at 06:44 #

    I love your honesty, Stasha. I too have felt overwhelmed and concerned that I am reading more blogs than books. You may have noticed I have also slowed down a lot. As seductive as social media is and as nurturing the community, we all have busy lives. We don’t need added pressure. I plan to unplug for the month of August. I know you’ll be there thinking of me from time to time, as I will be thinking of you. Enjoy your summer. Take beautiful photos. No pressure. Relax! Love and bear hugs xoxox.

  7. Runnermom-jen July 27, 2012 at 07:06 #

    Twitter: runnermomjen
    Yes, Stasha…this…exactly this!!! I am slow at the whole online thing lately too, and sometimes I only do one post a week. And, that is fine. It’s summer and summer is the best!!! I’m very happy you are enjoying your time…that is exactly how it should be. Now, don’t feel guilty anymore!!!
    Runnermom-jen recently posted..The Week in Photos…

  8. Rachel July 27, 2012 at 07:09 #

    Twitter: racheldrechsel
    This post is so true. I love it. And I’m so glad i met you through this crazy Internet thing.
    Rachel recently posted..summertime and the living’s easy

  9. Ally July 27, 2012 at 07:24 #

    Twitter: normalmomally
    Ah, you have good balance, is what you have. I’m not on Instagram, but when I see your photos, I see someone who loves life, enjoys life and posts pictures that makes her happy. And if you don’t post, I assume that means you are living a real life, on your island, with your amazing family. :)
    Ally recently posted..Priorities In Forgetfulness

  10. Susi July 27, 2012 at 10:12 #

    Twitter: bocafrau
    I know exactly how you feel and it seems with summer and the kids home more time is spent away from the computer and internet… and isn’t that how it should be? I still love all of it, just a little less. I go with the flow and try to enjoy my time with my kids before school and all it entails has us at it’s beck and call!!! :)
    Susi recently posted..Time to do some fill ins…

  11. Amanda July 27, 2012 at 10:20 #

    Twitter: lilahbility
    I agree. It’s lovely when someone digs what you’re doing, but it’s not what life is all about. The irony is that we are mostly blogging/instagramming/FBing about our daily lives, but if we spend too much time doing that, we aren’t actually LIVING them. So I say go out and live it, suck the marrow, and then blog about it when you have time. Plus, that makes for way more interesting blog fodder. 😉
    Amanda recently posted..Looking Forward

  12. Cindy Pickering July 27, 2012 at 12:20 #

    Oh Stasha, I feel so sad that you are feeling burned out! That is my first concern, but as to your post–I feel you were reading my mind! Some days I get up and get going and then stop myself before I wake-up the computer, because I know how much time I spend already, and I don’t want to waste so much of it! Not that reading your blogs and posts is something I consider a waste of time–I LOVE your posts and photos!! But there are other people who I follow and do feel that way about, and I don’t want to make anyone feel bad by dropping them, so I continue with the time-wasting! And I really regret the fact that our country is becoming so separated from physical contact, face-to-face interaction. I see groups of young people walking together or eating out together, and they are all on the cell, texting or looking at Facebook–it makes me crazy!! What is going to happen to us? I feel I can already see the effects, even in my son, who at 38, is not one brought up with every new gadget, so he’s not quite as ‘plugged in’! But still, I see he ‘talks’ to people by texting most of the time. I worry about all of us wedging more and more stuff into every minute of the day, and feeling bad if we aren’t doing at least 5 things at a time!` I wonder how much farther we can go-don’t want to go backwards, but maybe a little bit sideways?!? I have avoided even checking out sites I know I would like because I just can’t fit another obsession to my already dwindling free-time! That’s not good. And I don’t know what it will take for some people to ‘get a life’, and ease up on the wonderful gadgets we have all become addicted to .
    But I’m not saying anything that hasn’t been said before, what I really want to address is you! You give us SO much! Just looking at one of your photographs can make me smile for days! That my dear, is the power that you have-to make people forget all about how many likes they got or where to find a new meme! You bring the humanity back to these screens we stare at for hours! And that is invaluable-as you are! I hope you are just busy and overwhelmed, and not suffering from anything worse than that, but don’t ever feel you aren’t giving us enough–ever. Because you let us peek into your life and smile. And that is priceless. Give your dog a scratch and your son a big hug, and remember how much you do give to us!! Thank you Stasha!

    • Stasha July 28, 2012 at 11:00 #

      Twitter: NorthWestMommy
      My eyes are full of tears reading this. Thank you so very much Cindy. THANK YOU!! xoxo

  13. Stacie July 27, 2012 at 12:51 #

    Twitter: snapsandbits
    I have to admit I’m totally addicted to instagram. But I use it differently. I only follow about 20 people I care about so it’s much easier to manage. I don’t want it to get like you describe and Good For You Stasha!
    Stacie recently posted..Awesomely Exhausted

  14. Kelly Kardos July 27, 2012 at 16:21 #

    I think every one of us could have written this post at onetime or another. I gave up Flickr a year ago as I let it slowly consume me. FB was next. I want to be very careful that I don’t let IG become my focus. I don’t feel bad about not following everyone that follows me I like my little group of shutter sisters and if someone doesn’t like that… Well that’s ok! Don’t feel bad. Please take it from a mom who has less than a year left with her baby before he goes off to school… Time flies way too fast! Xo

  15. Tamar Strauss-Benjamin July 28, 2012 at 14:00 #

    What a fun event! I wish my sister lived nearer to Seattle or you in PDX so I could meet you and Little J while I am in PDX next week! But I agree, I love seeing my non-blog/instagram friend each week at synagague is a refreshing non-media way to interact!
    Tamar Strauss-Benjamin recently posted..July Randoms v.2

  16. BonnyBard July 28, 2012 at 14:53 #

    Twitter: thebonnybard
    Ever since I changed blogs I dropped twitter and Facebook (for the blog, not my personal one, but mine were always separate) and I never really got into instagram… I’m sure the blog suffers from my lack of social media presence but I needed a break from all the madness so your post really makes resonates with me! I may or may not get sucked back in, but for now I’m enjoying just writing to write and reading stuff I’m actually interested in (including books! and magazines!). I still check my meagre stats (often) but much less obsessively… it’s liberating!
    BonnyBard recently posted..What women want, or this woman in any case

  17. Just Jennifer July 28, 2012 at 17:38 #

    Twitter: JenAnnHall
    I love what Cindy said about what you give us. She’s so right!

    All things in life require balance. This is something I mention a lot. Social media is just another thing to balance because I’m just not an all or nothing kind of person.

    I think we should live our lives, do all the things we need and want to do, and maybe only spend time on the computer when we’ve got nothing else we want to do more. I enjoy sharing my life online for so many reasons, the most important being the loved ones I don’t live near.

    I’d also like to point out that I think the fact that there is such a thing as an Instameet, or Tweetups or blog conferences, just goes to show that people DO want to interact face to face TOO. Right?

    Also, I mean it when I say I want to meet you, and chat over a cuppa. I would LOVE it!
    Just Jennifer recently posted..Angry Jennifer!

  18. [email protected] July 29, 2012 at 03:22 #

    Twitter: southmainmuse
    A big hug to you. Ditto to all the comments. Everyone with children and a life outside social media can agree. These things should enhance life not over take it.
    [email protected] recently posted..Sandcastles and snowmen. Miniature golf at WDW.

  19. deborah l quinn July 29, 2012 at 04:47 #

    Twitter: mannahattamamma
    Your photos are beautiful and give you joy (as well as joy to those who you’re photographing). That’s all that matters. I’ve sort of drawn a line for myself–twitter is all I can handle, and all those other things – tumblr, instagram, pinwhatsis–I can’t handle them. sometimes it all does seem too much, and I think in the summer, particularly, when we are outside seeing people IRL (OMG can you imagine, face-to-face???) the virtual life pales by comparison. Or maybe I’m just old and crotchety. I will say, however, that knowing you online has been wonderful – and especially in my early days of our move to Abu Dhabi, it was sooo nice to reach out thru the interwebs to someone who “got it” about life out there… : )
    deborah l quinn recently posted..Out of Africa…but first a few words about poop

  20. Anna July 29, 2012 at 16:56 #

    Twitter: mommy_padawan
    Wow, I love this post Stasha, really awesome. I always wonder how others seem to have time to do it all, constantly on facebook and twitter, blogging every day, etc. I know the numbers are important to some as well. I’m finally comfortable with doing what ever I can and feel like doing that day (online) and not feeling bad about any of it. Family, friends and life offline is important. I have to admit though, I’d love to meet some of the bloggers I follow in real life :)
    Anna recently posted..What Really Matters

  21. Amanda July 30, 2012 at 01:17 #

    From the very beginning I thought that all people on the photo were trying to depict something, and I was wondering what it was)
    Amanda recently posted..Business WordPress Themes

  22. Liz Denehy SB via Facebook July 31, 2012 at 02:43 #

    You’re not old, my friend!!! Wait till you’re as old as me!!! 47 is old!! 😉

  23. Liz August 2, 2012 at 11:05 #

    You, my friend are one of my favourite Bloggers, Instagrammers & virtual friends. You inspire me daily (many times) with your images, your creativity and most of all your wit and attitude to life!
    And I often think of you when I boil the kettle & pour a cup of Twinings :)
    Liz recently posted..This or That Thursday & Colour Me Weekly

  24. Julia Spencer August 12, 2012 at 04:40 #

    The photo is very funny) I have several of such kind with my friends)
    Julia Spensers recent post.. How to Enjoy Facebook Benefits If You Own a Small Business