100 Days: a summation, a musing, a GIVEAWAY.

Post Edit: To be clear - out of town readers can definitely enter to win the giveaway! Readers outside of Utah would win everything except the tickets to see the Kid History Episode 5 Premier, simply because it would be hard for readers outside of Utah to attend that event. So if a non-local reader wins the pot, we'll just pull the tickets and do another random drawing from the local entries to win the tickets. Good?

I didn't post, yesterday. I had to fight the urge; had to remind myself as my fingers kept finding themselves at the keyboard that I was not going to post, not going to post, not going to post! It felt like sweet relief and guilt at the same time.

It was at times a very difficult thing for me to force myself to do each day - sometimes I simply had nothing to say. Have you ever tried to write something at least marginally interesting when you have simply nothing to say? Tricky, tricky. But yesterday's deliberate non-posting helped me realize - and I am gratified to know that - I am going to miss this project.

Bill asked me toward the middle and again toward the end of my 100 days whether I felt that my writing has improved as a result. My answer in short form? No. There were some posts that I was pleased with. But there were also many evenings when the clock was ticking on toward midnight, and I sat trapped at my computer having no blessed idea what I would write about, and the resulting post ended up being some convoluted musing on one trivial thing or another that I wouldn't normally force anyone to read.

I'm no better at grammatics. I'm no closer to fine tuning metaphors. I am not suddenly a writer who's work is compelling and heart-breaking and inspiring all at the same time. So, no. I don't think that my writing has improved as a result of this project.

But my writing habit? Now there's an improvement worth its weight in gold. For 100 days, I have written something every single day. I've proven to myself that I can do it - write every day, I mean - and not allow even big things to get in the way and break me of that glorious habit. I mean, I did have a baby during this adventure. I didn't allow that to be my excuse.

So will I continue to post every day? No. Because sometimes, not having anything to say is a good thing. And sometimes your readers need a break, too. And sometimes, a great post needs a few days to breathe before being trampled on by the next thing. But I do think I will post far more often than I was before this experiment. And I do think I have a clearer idea of what I want my little space to accomplish. And I do think that you are all incredibly wonderful for sticking with me through these past 100 days. Which brings me to...


This Giveaway has a life of its own. As I continue to comb through the past 100 posts and think of related giveaway goodies, the pot will continue to grow. But as it stands right now, this is what you'll win!

This giveaway features:
  • NOTE CARD SAMPLING - Remember this? Now its your turn to make sure the opportunity to let someone know how you feel doesn't sneak away.
  • TWO NOTEBOOKS - For two reasons. 1 - I have a sneaking suspicion that planning posts ahead of time could make things easier/improve things. So an attractive little notebook to jot down post ideas and inspirations when they hit strikes me as a pretty groovy idea. 2. I love doodling, and a doodler can never have too many little notebooks. Agreed?
  • CD - from this post. This is a sampling of my current favorites, including the songs from that post. Listen loud, and listen alone. Let it bowl you over. Then you can share.
  • KEY CHAIN LIGHT - you'd think this was to make finding your car key-hole easier to find in a dark parking-lot, wouldn't you? You'd be wrong, though. Really, this is a take-along distraction for small children. Trust me, it works.
  • FRENCH PAPER SWAG - Since you all helped Bill's video get recognized, we want to share the incredibly sweet loot. The French Paper glasses and paper mustache are singular delights that will make anyone jealous, and the cute buttons/magnets will make you happy every time you see 'em.
  • SPRING FRESH EARRINGS/RING - because even though I've been really enjoying all the rain this spring/early summer thus far - I know some of you are eager for colorful and blossoming gardens.
  • TICKETS TO SEE KID HISTORY EP. 5 (not pictured). Yes, that's right. The winner** of this giveaway will receive two tickets to join us at the Kid History premier of Episode 5! 
 **This particular portion of the prize can only be won by local readers (unless you want to fly in for the show?) - so if you win the booty and you don't hail from Utah Valley, we'll separate this from the rest and have two winners - one for the tix and one for everything else. Mm-kay?
    As mentioned, there may be more to win! I'll let you know how the pot grows at the end of the Giveaway - which will close at midnight on Sunday.

    Leave a comment here naming your favorite of the 100 day posts.
    Yes, I thought so, too.

    Good Luck!

    And guys? Thanks again. Really.


    Nae said...

    Man, Stepper, you sure ask a lot. Picking a favorite?

    Okay. My #1 was Letters.

    My #2 was Pants on Fire

    And then the Conquering Sunday, parts one and two came in a very close third!

    Danyelle said...

    My favorite was the Henry story. I am a sucker for a how baby came to be. And I LOVED the nickname one. And the math problem. And the one about the fellow student breaking the abuse cycle. And... oh man, I love every one of them. I strive to be at least 1/2 the writer that you are. Your blog is one thing that I look forward to everyday. :)

    sharon. said...

    What if we live out of State but visit every 2-3 months? Can I still enter?! Either way, I obviously loved your post of your newest addition of baby Henry! I also loved our one about the be-yaz commercial. Oh and your one of your adventure to St George without a license and credit card! And all of Bills videos! I have so enjoyed your blogging1 Keep it up Stepper!!!

    Janey said...

    Hard to pick just one out of a hundred! So any of the ones where you vent or talk about being a mom cuz they make me feel like I'm not alone. Loved "This Time". And of course the ones where you post pics of your cute little ones. And THIS one because you are doing a giveaway with awesome stuff.

    Wayne and Erin said...

    Oh, I want to win!!! What a fun prize basket!
    Ok, so I just love your blog. It is a way to stay in touch, with a friend I dearly miss. One of my favorites was "I Like that I'm Weird" from April's posts. I smiled and thought, "I like that I'm weird too!"
    I also loved anything about how much you love your husband and the journey through your pregnancy. I admit there may have been a tear or two dropped as I read your posts.

    Carolyn said...

    Loved the Henry story also. Loved your Costco one, cuz I can totally relate. Gosh, so many good ones. I love reading anything of yours, really.

    Windy Dawn said...

    Pick a favorite? That's easy. "I like that I'm weird." But in my mind I think of it as the 'Do Hard Things' post. Congrats on completing your 100 days! You are fabulous.

    Cheryl said...

    I've really enjoyed reading your blog over the past 100 days (and well, before that too!). Sometimes I caught up at night when I couldn't get to sleep...sometimes I caught up in the day when the wee one was either napping or totally lost in the land of Duplo and didn't care what I was doing as long as I was nearby...sometimes I even read them every day! However, the post that sticks with me the most out of all of them was really even that wordy...

    "How You Know a Boy Lives Here." I heart it.

    (P.S. Thanks for the shout out. I didn't laugh....too much. :P)

    Charms said...

    Sushi vs. Love was definitely up there...and I liked it when you guest blogged on my blog!!!
    I agree--it's too hard to pick just one!!!

    I loved reading every one of your 100 day posts. Now what am I going to look forward to???

    Megan.Card said...

    Hmm, my favorite... I loved them all! Oh I especially love it when you post pictures with your Blog.

    I can't pick just one favorite but here are a few of my top favorites...
    ** I REALLY liked the "How You Know A Boy Lives Here"
    **"This Is How It Goes" I can totally picture all of these conversations with him. I love the cute and VERY clever things that Wyatt says!
    **I really appreciated the birthday tribute "I Good Soup Aged 22"
    **Your post about BeYaz really affected me. I wanted the video and read your post and it made me cry. I then went on to show Cleve the post and we talked a lot about it and how the world views children and parenthood. I am very grateful I have a sister and women like you in my life to help me know what try happiness is and to be a good example. I am thankful for Mothers.
    **I loved your post of "How Henry Happened" I read the first one and was hooked! I kept checking my computer every few hours the next day to see if you had posted the rest of the story.
    **Last but not least I loved all your posts about the people you live with

    I think it is great that your achieved your goal off 100 days! I love reading your blog! I really think you should print your posts and put them into a book that you can look back on later in life. Your blog is like a clever mix between a journal and a scrapbook...I LOVE IT!!

    That Girl said...

    The G(l)ory of motherhood. And I liked reading about your mom. And the Pants on Fire.

    Basically, if you wrote it, I loved it.

    (The WV is "spidahs" and I think that's cool.)

    MikkSolo said...

    Loved every day! But, mostly any post about the people you love. I used the BeYaz post to teach a lesson to my Laurels class...just what I needed. I love the random facts (Friday Facts) posts. You made me laugh and cry. I LOVE Stepper the Mighty.