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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

What Makes a Great Blogger? Virginia, the HomeRearedChef, is One Year Old Today


Virginia’s, one year anniversary is today. She has been blogging for a year at BlogHer, and has logged over 195 posts. When I say she is amazing, I do not exaggerate. Although I am a little prejudiced, for I am proud to have her as a friend.

What makes Virginia, a.k.a. HomeRearedChef, such a great blogger that people feel they MUST read her blog to make their day complete?

Yes, I’m going to go there.

1.      She is sincere. If Virginia says it, she means it. She is rarely sarcastic. Good grief, a little sarcasm is okay, but aren’t some blogs just swimming in it?
2.      Virginia is funny, but she doesn’t make fun of other people. She may turn her gentle humor on herself, but she doesn’t have anything even close to a mean streak. Again, do we really need more ranting and raving in the world?
3.      She stands up for herself. She can tell about low points in her life, but she doesn’t apologize for being human. She is not afraid to be authentic. You can always tell the post is one of Virginia’s. She has her own voice; you would never mistake her for anyone else.
4.      She is not a girl-scout or too goody-goody to be true. She has made mistakes and had bad times in her life, she writes about them, and readers feel validated and not shamed if they have shared a similar experience.
5.      She is friendly; she is welcoming. Reading her posts makes readers feel like they are sitting at her kitchen table.
6.      She is not afraid to be emotional, but doesn’t overdo it. She knows that some events in life are worth crying about.
7.      She is thoughtful. She learns from others, so that her blog is not a one-way street.
8.      She is modest. She really doesn’t know how good a writer she is.
9.      She praises others even when she disagrees with them. She appreciates her readers.
10.   She has LIVED. She has had a life rich with love, happiness, and sorrow. She lives every day that has been given to her. She writes about it all, the bitter and the better.

I can’t believe how lucky I was to find her kind, compassionate voice. Let’s celebrate a Blogging Queen, Virginia!

To find Virginia, go to BlogHer.com. You can usually find her on the right side under "Most Popular," or you can search for her as HomeRearedChef. She also posts great recipes to the Examiner. Here's her latest: http://www.examiner.com/food-in-san-jose/cheesy-muffaletta-a-la-panini-recipe

28 comments:

  1. Oh, Melanie, mi Querida Amiga, you leave me speechless, at a real loss for words. But I must tell you that I feel my heart thumping against my chest, with love to overflowing for you.

    Why couldn't I have met you when I was a young girl first come to the United States?

    Why couldn't I have met you when I was getting into so much trouble in Junior High and High School? Maybe you would have talked me out of it!

    Why do you have to live so far away?

    You are the most sincere person I know; you wear your heart on your sleeve. But I, too, have noticed the kindness with which you speak to your followers. All your commentators talk to you as if they've known you all their lives.

    Sometime I may get a little jealous, because I want to shout at all of them and say "I found her first. She was my friend first!" LOL! (What a brat I am. I know.)

    Remember, Amiga, our casa is your casa too. If you and your Honeys can ever make your way to visit us here in California, I have a room just for you. :)

    I LOVE you, my friend, and I am not ashamed to say it! :)

    Your friend forever,
    ~Virginia

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    1. This was the easiest blog post I ever wrote-- I had to stop myself at #10! You make me laugh and cry at the same time, but that's just typical of you. :)
      If we had met as girls... I was probably more mixed up than you were, so we might have driven off a cliff like Thelma and Louise. Probably we were meant to meet now, for the safety of us both. I know I have said before that you saved me, and I don't exaggerate. I remember reading your post about menopause, thinking, HomeRearedChef? Here is a woman who understands what I'm going through and is not afraid to talk about it.
      You are my first blogging buddy and that is a special bond, don't you worry. We are sisters!
      If you and Lancelot Knight come East, you will stay with us. We will send the men fishing and talk each others ears off.
      I love you too-- what an amazing year it has been! Bear Hugs!

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  2. I just wanted to tell you, Melanie, that since I could only shout your blog about me here at home, with only hubby to hear me (he also read it), I have Tweeted and Facebooked it too. I want my family and friends on Facebook to see who Melanie is, a woman I am so very proud to call MY FRIEND...Mi Amiga! :)

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  3. Hear hear, she is awesome.

    Also, they say if you want to know what people are like, look at the company they keep. I think this says volumes about you too, Melanie :)

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    1. Gosh, that's kind of you to say. You have made me smile, and I can never have too many smiles in my day. Thank you for reading and commenting!

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  4. Happy anniversary, Virginia!

    I have to remember to go over to BlogHer and catch up with you.

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    1. Hmn. And when is your anniversary, lovely and talented Miss Jane? I feel another appreciation post coming on. :)

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    2. Thank you, Jane! And I need to come and visit you, too. I rarely come her to Blogger, and so I apologize for my long absence. I am coming to see you tomorrow. Love you, too, Amiga! :)

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  5. Put me in that group hug. I feel so very fortunate to know Virginia and you also, Melanie. Both of you have taught me a lot and made me think of life and the world in ways I hadn't before.

    So, happy anniversary Virginia, many more (I say selfishly).
    Thank you Melanie for recognizing a wonderful, caring soul. I guess it takes one to know one.

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    1. We will all join hands and dance! Thank you so much for the kind words. Virginia has been the conduit for so many of us to come together. I'm so glad we've met!

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    2. Awe, heck, I feel bad because I should have mentioned that since Elaine and hubby love to travel, they are also welcome to come out to California to visit our home with all the freakin' deer that are devouring my flourishing trees. *Calming down here!* LOL!

      Elaine, I solemnly promise you and Melanie to create healthy but tasty dishes when you visit. I could also threaten to come out that way too. *Be very afraid!* :)

      Love and many BIG squishy hugs, my friend!
      ~Virginia

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  6. nice opinion.. thanks for sharing....

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  7. Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment!

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  8. Oh what a beautiful heartfelt post tributing Virginia. She is such a lovely lady :) And so are you dear Melanie!

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    1. There you are, Karen. So very nice to see you! :)

      I would celebrate "Melanie" everyday! But that is how I feel about all my new found virtual friends. My heart is full to bursting!

      Love you all!!!
      ~Virginia

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    2. Hi Karen-- hope you are doing well Karen! Thanks for stopping by and I shall come reading your way soon. Thinking of you, my friend. You are an inspiration to me.

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  9. Will be tracking Virginia down this weekend during my block of blogging time. Thanks for sharing such a nice post.

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    1. Hi, M.M! I should have been more clear about how to find Virginia. I'll go back and revise the post, but in case you are looking for her, check at BlogHer.com. Virginia generally has at least one post listed under most popular and you can also find her if you search for HomeRearedChef! Thanks for reading, my friend!

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  10. Virginia is AMAZING, and Melanie you are totally spot on about everything you said! Hugs and love to you all! <3

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    1. Easiest post I ever wrote... I see a series of these posts coming about all the sweet friends I am so lucky to have made through blogging. :-)

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  11. Virginia is such a wonderful person! She always...ALWAYS...has something nice to say, a warm greeting...EXTREMELY genuine. And yes, it is such a joy to read posts from someone who has such a wonderful outlook on life and the world. I'm glad to have gotten to know her via BlogHer and I feel HORRID that I am not making a bigger effort to see her beautiful face in person...'cause I can ya know...she only lives a few miles from me. I'm just being a stupid hermit.

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    1. Oh, Melissa, don't you call my girlfriend names! Yes, you. Besides, I am a bigger hermit than you are, nya-nya.
      But seriously, she is one of those people who puts a smile on my face just to think of her. Kinda like that other chick, Alienbody. :-) So there.

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    2. That's right, Melissa, we live very close to each other but haven't made the effort. :) I guess we still need to make plans on that. And I so wish that Melanie was nearby to join us too. Sigh!

      I really appreciate BOTH of you ladies. You guys are my heroes as writers!

      ~Virginia

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  12. I tink Nurse Elaine had it right: it takes one to know one. Of course I will check out Virginia's site, but I was checking off each of the ten qualities you described, wondering if maybe Virginia and Melanie are one and the same. I really liked this post.

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    1. Aww, Mark! No, Virginia has me beat, hands down, although she would protest. She has it "going on!" I have so enjoyed meeting you, Mark, and reading your blog, friend.

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    2. P.S. If you go to BlogHer and look under the most popular list on the right hand side or search for HomeRearedChef, you'll find Virginia in all her glory.

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  13. I have awarded you the Versatile Blogger award. Stop by my blog to pick up your badge and get the guidelines for this award. http://www.emptyhousefullmind.com

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    1. Sharon, you have made my day! I will be over there soon. Thanks for your kindness!

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