And just like that, it’s Wednesday again!  Time to welcome another worthy blogger in the Nation as a Sluiter Nation Recruit.

What’s that?  You don’t know what a Recruit is?  Well, stop here first before continuing.

I know every week it seems like I am telling you how honored I am to have that week’s blogger, but it’s true! And this week is no different.  I was nervous when I approached her (since she is royalty and all), that perhaps her busy scheduling of ruling the interwebs would be way too packed to fit in a little trip to visit The Nation.

But because The Empress is the most gracious ruler that ever lived, she enthusiastically agreed!

Alexandra rules her empire of three boys and a husband (His Majesty) over at Good Day, Regular People.

She is probably one of the most genuine bloggers out there.    If her words can help someone?  She will put them out there.  Her genuine goal is to put more joy in the world and to reveal that which is already there.

Well…you’ll see.


When K asked me to guest post as a SluiterNation Recruit, I emailed back a “YES!” before I even finished reading her invitation to guest on her blog.

The woman loves words and what they can do to you, as much as I do.

I wanted my post here to be one she would be happy to feature. When I asked K for ideas, she offered some suggestions: “belonging,” was one of them.

I liked that one.

Me, here, at SluiterNation, where readers come to find writing they can sink their souls into, and leave feeling a part of something, belonging. That’s the type of blog SluiterNation is.


“When I had my child, I learned what the sound of one hand clapping is– it’s a woman holding an infant in one arm, and a pen in the other.”

–Kate Braverman

Do you stop and think about why you blog?

Some of us just began blogging, not really clear on what the siren’s call to the screen was.

But we heard it.

All of us online, heard it.

We are different from those that don’t feel themselves pulled to the keyboard, to send our thoughts, messages, feelings, information, tapped into keys and then sent out there.

Out there.

With each of us hoping that our words land somewhere. I know, many bloggers say they blog “only for themselves,” and this could possibly be true.

But, what is hard for me to imagine, is how can anyone not enjoy the interaction?

I think people want to share, they want to put their heart and soul into what their existence is here on earth. To have a connection with people not yet met, friends to be.

They want to belong to something: the greater collective. A part of the human race, where we are drawn to communicate, and help, share, feel kinship toward one another.

Blogging does that for me. It provides me with a place to spell out my truths, my writing that I share with sincerity, in my search to feel a part of something.

I now belong to a group of people known as bloggers. I blog with the wish of meeting others, lightening someone’s load, sharing what I’ve learned, helping someone feel less different.

The magic in blogging with no falseness, or in not always painting a picture of a perfect world, is that I am the one who is shown the light. I see others feeling the same as I do, or leaving me messages of encouragement and love, or the most amazing words for me to hear, “Thank you, I thought it was just me.”

There is a light you see in togetherness, it is a light of joy, shared valleys in life, bringing hope, finding hope, having the shelter of friendship, feeling the warm smile spread across your face in recognition of a friend’s avatar on your site.

This is the rich gift of belonging to the group known as bloggers.


Thank you so much, K, for allowing me to be here, as a SluiterNation Recruit. I’ve been looking forward to it!


Didn’t I tell you she was lovely?

And now?  You must go become a follower of The Empress.

She is all over twitter.

But really you need to go read her words.

Because I am a teacher and I love to be appreciated…Your Minds are Mine Forever

Because I have a blog and someone loves me…When Someone You Love Has a Blog (read the whole series.  seriously.)

Because I fear the day Eddie is a teenager…Lost in Translation (no seriously, Alexandra…you need to help me someday).

And Because her son has one of the best writing voices on the internet…Baby E (read all his posts.  He’s good).

About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.


  1. Two gorgeous, amazing and gracious people in one place!

    Alexandra, you already know how I feel about you as a blogger, writer and person. You are the most generous and genuine person I’ve never met in real life. Truly.

    Kate, thanks for having her here, it’s always a pleasure to read the Empress’ words! And you? Generous and genuine too (I still look at the card you sent when I’m feeling blue)

    • The pleasure is all mine having the Empress here! She is just too lovely for words! 🙂

  2. You know how happy I am to be here, right, K?

    I remember following you home, from another blog, because your comment said to me, ” I KNOW I like this sluiternation chick.”

    Yes, Yes, I truly do.

    You are the real deal.

    Thanks for the invite…I am just beaming.

    • Oh lady. I am beyond giddy that you were ruling my Nation today.

      You can follow me home any day, babe. Really.

      you have an open invitation.

  3. As always, you have a lovely way with words and trying to describe WHY we blog is so elusive isn’t it? I love you, you know that right? and thanks for leading me to a new blog…even though HONESTLY, i’m such a crap reader.

    Nice to be here at Sluiter Nation…hmmm…now i kind of want to start my own nation…I’ve always had my own country … hmmm

    lots of love

    • if you start a nation? Plus we have the Empress? We can create our own United Blogger Nations and rule the interwebs!



      • The problem with me is i tend to start things and then get bored so my nation would be pretty Fooked up… Kind of a half assed nation. But I kinda like the sound of that so heck yeah, let’s DO IT!!!!

        Don’t you already rule the inter webs?

        • most of my life is half-assed. i’m hoping it catches on as the newest thing and I will be all trendy and awesome. even though it’s ridiculous. Sort of like carrying around small dogs in purses.

          and yes, I totally rule the interwebs. in a completely half-assed way. Which is why the virtual lawn? Looks like virtual shit.

          • OMG! I love that answer. How have we not been friends..that MUST be rectifies RFN!!!

            PS…I’m at Type A on a bike working off my hangover…hopefully!

          • Yes! halfass friends! boom.


            you’re on a bike to work off a hangover?

            Ok nevermind. we can’t be friends. I don’t ride bikes. especially not when i am hung over.

  4. smiles. i love the community i have found through blogging…my reasons for blogging have changed over the last 3 years…originally i wrote to leave stories for my boys to understand who i am and what i believe…then i got on this poetry kick and now i still hope they leave impressions my boys will one day appreciate on how to live life well…

    • Yes, the community is exactly what was missing from my life that I had no idea was missing.

      Oh and? Welcome to the Nation.

  5. What a way to explain why we blog! This really explains it!

  6. I love The Empress. I found her at On the Verge one day. Love. A

    And I love that she “gets it,” this magic in blogging and making connections. When I started blogging, it was for me. But now? I write for myself AND others. The connections are real, you know?

    • YES! I started just for me and my lime light hog self.

      Now? It’s for all of you 🙂

  7. This post, these words – sweet perfection, beauty and truth. I love me some Empress. xoxo

  8. The Empress is so very lovely!

    I started my blog as a way to get stories/pictures to my family without bombarding their inboxes 🙂

    As I wade deeper and deeper into the blogging community, I love the connections I make and the interaction between readers and writers.

  9. People don’t understand what it’s like to blog and be a part of this amazing community of love and support. I’m so glad I took the plunge.
    Xoxo empress

  10. That was very eloquently said, as always.
    About the kinship – I must admit, I never, ever expected to form this bond with other bloggers – I didn’t even really know it existed when I began.
    I just started so I could stand on my soapbox – but it’s been incredible to find all of you standing there, along side me.

    • I had no idea any of this community existed either. I started so I could hear myself talk.

      Now? I have so many lovely people (ahem…you, the Empress) to “listen” and whom I can listen to also.

  11. And today, thanks to the efforts of you both, these words land softly in the hearts and minds of others at the keyboard who revere the art of preserving memories and creating new connections.

    Thank you.

  12. I’m such a glad follower of the Empress.

    I absolutely love knowing that I’m reaching (and reaching out to) a set of people who I’d likely never run across outside of the blogging world, yet a group of people that is ever-growing and that I have an increasing amount of respect for.

    • yes. that circle of people you can rely on to read your words and really “hear” you.

  13. Hello Empress and Kate — I would like to apply to be part of your court. I’m happy to be the court jester and promise no court intrigues. You are both Royals in my mind. xo

  14. Funny…I don’t even think I knew why I started blogging at the time. I just liked it. I was clueless about the whole “community” thing. I’m kind of a renegade that way.

    Enter the lady up there…The Empress. I still recall the first time she stopped by my place, left an insightful, supportive comment, and within minutes, had half of Twitter over at my site to see what the heck all the fuss was about.

    Yes. That’s just the kind of lady she is. The Blogosphere is so much better with her in it.

    • isn’t it though? I started just to write…i had no idea that a “blogosphere” existed.

      but it lead me over to The Empress…and then her to me.


  15. I came over today for a visit from the Empress. I have been looking or some “ne to me” blogs to keep me occupied since some of the ones I follow are yawners. I do believe I like what I see.

    I’ll be back…..

    • “New to me”. Duh. Sometimes I get so excited to press the post comment button I leave the editing forgotten. And, as you can see, that’s not cool!

    • oh hey…like what you see? it was the jeans, right? These jeans do make my bottom look cute.

      oh wait…you were talking about the blog.

      Eh, I stand by my original statement.

      It’s the jeans.

  16. Alexandra,

    Lately I have been mulling over a lot of this stuff, circling round these ideas you have so eloquently expressed in your post here. I’ve been thinking about how, in just over a year, blogging has brought me a whole new wonderful community, one that is complementary to my “IRL” community in the needs it fulfills, how glad I am to have both in my life.

    What a lovely post! And thanks Kate, for bringing The Empress home with you. She sure does liven up a place, no?

    Big hugs for you both! (Hopefully delivered in person in August!)

    • I do love to bring the lively ones home with me. Especially when they clean up after themselves so well.

      Big fat hug back to you, my dear.

  17. The Empress? Here, in the Nation?

    Well, that’s just about perfect. And I adore her and these words were just what I wanted to read today. Such a wonderful community we are all a part of here, and I had no idea what I was missing until I found it.

    • that is exactly it. “I had no idea what I was missing until I found it.”


      And yes, The Empress looks good in Sluiter Nation, doesn’t she?

  18. Yes, yes, yes, and yes!! I love the line: “With each of us hoping that our words land somewhere”. It is so true. My hope is that somewhere, someone reads my words nodding their head. As if the words were true for them as well or maybe my little old words stirred something, even an itty bitty something.

  19. Oh Empress, this was just as lovely as I expected it to be. You did a wonderful job of expressing exactly how I feel about the blogosphere much more eloquently than I ever could.

  20. Love the Empress! (and of course her Baby E) I, too, have been “saved by blogging.”

  21. I am too brain dead to eloquently express my complete and total agreement with this piece and how much it resonates for me. I will simply say that
    1: I follow the Empress wherever she goes, and I have always ended up somewhere that has made me laugh, moved me, enlightened me, or otherwise enriched my ridiculous existence. Her destinations have a way of helping me make sense of things. And today’s destination did not disappoint. As always, I am grateful to have someone whose suggestions are beyond trustworthy. I am so glad to be here to have read this post, and to have discovered SluiterNation — a place I will be visiting frequently in the future!
    2 – I did not expect this whole “belonging” thing when I first began blogging. I was blindly reaching out, yelling at the universe, and praying for, but not really expecting, any sort of response. How amazing it has been to become part of a community, to be embraced for who I am — because those are really what our words are for, aren’t they? To express essentially who we are, without all the baggage that (weirdly) weighs down life in the so-called real world, where so many things get in the way of people really connecting and understanding one another.

    • I didn’t expect to “belong” to anything by blogging either. In fact, finding “others” was a surprise to me.

      And yes, I also follow the Empress wherever she goes. Luckily it was close to home today, so I didn’t get too tired from the walk.

      I’m glad you came over, found a comfy place. I look forward to seeing you around the Nation 🙂

  22. As always, a warm and welcoming embrace from The Empress.

    You make the world better just by being you.

  23. Thank you so much for sharing your space with one of my favorites today. As always, Alexandra’s words are beautiful and poignant. It’s no wonder she has such a strong following.

    Now off I go to check out your wonderful home. Hope it’s okay I barged in all unannounced and whatnot. :p

    • Unannounced barging is my favorite! Make yourself at home. Grab a cup of coffee and enjoy!

  24. there is something remarkably positive about pouring your heart out and hitting publish. Bloggers are some of the most generous people out there, it is so amazingly encouraging to hear what people think when you bare your soul. Of course, there is the Spam, but if you fry it up and put it in a sandwich…wait.

  25. Alexandra is a rare gem. We are ALL better for knowing her.

  26. The Empress! TheSuniverse is right. We are all lucky you are here. Such a wonderfully generous, talented and funny lady.

  27. So lovely to see the Empress here today.

    A, you are one of the most amazing writers I have the privilege to read every day. This magic that has hold of all of us is quite special – and you have shared what blogging is to a T.

    You make all of us feel as though we belong.


  28. I came from “good day, regular people” and I am so glad I did…hope you stop by sometime……you will find a kindred spirit

  29. Just found your blog and am a new follower. I’ve heard good things about you!

  30. This is great, and so very true. Once you start blogging, it’s easy to get hooked.

  31. Ah, The Empress — you always “get it.” Don’t you? Yup. I find so many of us feel other, different, frankly odd. That is, until we find kindred spirits in this bloggy world.

  32. I’m going to copy one of my favorite bloggers in the world in the way she replies.

    The Empress.

    Fairy Blogmother, Matchmaker, Cheerleader, Wise Council, Writer Sister and most of all, Beloved Friend.

    I often say to my family, “My friend told me this…” Or “You’ll never guess what happened to my friend today.”

    They used to roll their eyes and say, “Oh, your blog friends?” But now, after all this time, they’re finally getting it.

    I belong here more than almost any other place.

    Great post, Empress.

    Thanks Katie, for spreading the love for our awesome Empress.

  33. So well said. As a new blogger, I am one of the many who describe themselves as, “blogging for me.” And I truly do in many ways. My blog seesaws from politics to pet peeves to a casual update on my views as a newbie blogger/Twitterer. I’m so all over the place that saying, “It’s for me” feels like I’m giving myself permission to write about whatever _I_ want to write about without feeling like I SHOULD be sticking to one topic or genre. But to say it’s JUST for me would be inaccurate. I don’t need my blog to appeal to everyone, or even to my core readers with every post. But every comment that I read is a reflection on the fact that I connected with someone. And THAT is why I really blog. Otherwise, I would keep a diary.

  34. Thank you, EVERYONE, for your kindness today.

    You just proved my post.


  35. Oh, my fairy blog mama-I’m a day late as usual, but i have to say, i adore your kindness. Just adore it.

  36. Excellent, of course. And me, I love the interaction.

  37. Finally made it over to see my girl. Empress, there’s no one else like you. xxoo

  38. This is so beautifully expressed. And of course, because The Empress is so genuine.

    It’s funny – I’m catching up on blog reading and this is the 4th post on a similar theme. I wrote my own on Thursday before even seeing the others, and now here they are. It reinforces how true this is.