Thursday, February 23, 2017

10 Years Over the Backyard Fence

This month marks the 10th anniversary of Over the Backyard Fence.

That's just mind boggling!  So much for thinking that I don't have a lot to say.

To mark OTBF's anniversary, I'm going to re-post my first entry. My reasons for blogging have remained much the same through the years. Back then, I was a stay-at-home-mom, hoping to find other like-minded women who were home with their kids and enjoying the homemaking experience. Now, I enjoy connecting with bloggers who are empty-nesters and share in this new stage of life.  In a way, blogging is like having pen pals.  I like writing newsy notes, and look forward to reading what other bloggers have to tell about their days and their lives.

Many thanks to all of you -- bloggers, friends, and family -- who take time from your day to stop in and 'chat' with me, over my backyard fence.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


Welcome to my blog. Years ago, I grew up in the same town where I'm now raising my own family. I remember summer afternoons, or warm weather days after school, when my mother and our next door neighbor would chat over the white picket fence that separated our back yards. They often happened to meet up when they were out hanging laundry or taking it down from the clothesline. They would chat, their little ones hanging onto their legs, us older kids knowing better than to stand and listen, so we would play elsewhere in the yard where we could hear their every word. My mother was so blessed to have a neighbor who soon became her best friend. Both my mother and the new neighbor had moved to our town from out of state. Both women were stay-at-home-moms (as many were in the 60s). Both women had left behind their parents, and hardest of all, their sisters. So they found one another and grew a friendship that lasted for 35 years.

Times have changed and although the neighborhoods in my not-so-small town still look the same, they've changed, too. I work from my home so that I, too, can be a stay-at-home mom, even though my children are all school age now. From my office window, I look out on the street where we live and watch my neighbors drive off to work each day. A few years ago, there was another woman like me who lived across the street, and we once admitted to each other that just the sight of our cars in the driveway gave the other a sense of comfort, to know that "someone else" was at home, too.

My back yard is edged with a "privacy fence" like the rest of the neighborhood. I'm not sure that either of my next-door neighbors even has a clothesline. (I do not). I don't feel isolated. Well yes I do, and that's why I love reading blogs written by other stay-at-home-moms. But if I need some human contact I can jump in the car, meet a friend for coffee or volunteer at my kids' school where the staff is always looking for warm bodies to help out. For the most part, I like working from my home. Yes, I always have to make the coffee, but since that was sometimes an issue when I worked in a "real office" at least I don't have to deal with that. My office mates are cooperative and cheerful, even if one does sleep and shed on my daytimer, and the other snores occasionally while asleep under my desk. I can take a break and blog when I want to, and no one looks over my shoulder asking what I'm doing. And when there's a warm, sunny day, I can sit on my screened-in back porch and listen to the birds chirping, put my feet up and take my coffee break out there. Sometimes, though, I look longingly at those high fences and think how nice it would be to find a friend on the other side.


Linda Hoye said...

Ten years! That's a great accomplishment, Karen. Congratulations!

Mildred said...

Congratulations to you on your 10 year anniversary of blogging. I enjoyed reading your first post. It's always interesting to learn why our friends started blogging. Your childhood sounds very similar to mine. I started blogging in 2008, shortly after the passing of my mother. I was her caregiver for the ten years prior to her passing. The love and support of my blog friends during that time was a real blessing.
Have a nice evening and I hope your weekend is wonderful, as well. Mildred

Mari said...

Congratulations on 10 years! I enjoyed your first post. I have my 10 year bloggoversary coming up too, but my first post wasn't nearly as interesting as yours!

Dianna said...

Congratulations on your ten years in blogging, Karen! I loved reading about your mom and her next door neighbor and how their friendship developed.

I also enjoyed reading about you working from home. I know you were blessed to have been able to do that.

Empty nesting is quite a change at first, but we all learn to adjust and eventually enjoy being just the two of us again. :-)

Have a wonderful weekend, Karen.

Mereknits said...

Ten years is a wonderful anniversary Karen. I love our very first post, you wrote so eloquently then and you still do. Thanks for being a great blog friend.

Mary Ann said...

Congratulations on your 10 year anniversary! I am glad you are a blogger as I so enjoy reading your posts. I was a military wife for 20 years(so long ago,60's,70's,80's) so I was a stay at home mom many times. I loved being a stay at home mom back then. Once the women's movement came on scene, I was looked down on then for not working outside the home!! I have always felt that women need to support women no matter what choices they make. I am not a blogger myself, but I was so delighted after I started quilting to find the blogging world! Read and learn so much from blogs.

Leslie said...

wow! 10 years, That's awesome Karen! I loved reading your first post and learning the meaning behind OTBF.

Looking forward to another 10!

Dewena said...

Wow, 10 years! Congratulations! I didn't even realize there was such a thing as blogs until about 2011, a year before I began. I enjoyed reading your post and I definitely saw similarities to my own reasons for beginning to blog. Like your friend and seeing each others cars in the driveway, seeing a new post from my blog friends is a comfort.