About Eclectic Evelyn

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Evelyn Dortch is EclecticEvelyn.com

My name is Evelyn Dortch and this is my midlife crisis… I mean blog. I’m a hormonal mess going through a midlife crisis who was too busy raising 4 children, founding a statewide nonprofit, and trying to save the world to ever “find myself”. So now I am on a journey to find myself and I am asking you to tag along.

A little history

I am a cosmic possum, the first generation born outside of Appalachia to return to the mountains. My mother was born in West Virginia but left as a small child. My grandparents moved for work, like so many other Appalachian families that were part of the Great Migration out of the hollers and into the cities. At the age of 24 pregnant with 3 children already, I moved back to West Virginia and have been here ever since.

I’m a social worker, community organizer, and activist. I am also a writer, photographer, and artist. For years I have put my creative side on hold to fight the good fight for poor women and families in Appalachia. After nearly 20 years of fighting, I found myself angry not only at the system but at the people for allowing it to happen. I no longer found joy and purpose in the fight only despair and anger. So in this second part of my life I am trying to find my joy, my purpose, and my creativity. That is where this blog comes in.

Eclectic Evelyn is a blog about finding creativity, experiencing life again, and trying to figure out exactly what it means to be middle-aged. It’s about making a drastic change in my life and for once putting myself first, something we women rarely do. It’s about waking up one morning and realizing, the kids are grown, life has changed and now what.

10 things about me

  1. In my house, I currently have 2 dogs (Vinny and Chiquita) and 3 cats (WafflesLittle Edie and their daughter Belgian).
  2. I hate to fly. I have flown in the past but after that incident in Cleveland, I will never fly again so don’t even ask. Not even to Hawaii or Jamaica, but I might take a boat. Jamaica is where Stella Got Her Groove Back.
  3. My favorite color is Azure blue.
  4. I love New York City at Christmas time but not so much in the summer. As a friend once said “New York smells too loud in the summer.”
  5. My favorite flowers are the tiny violets that grow all over Appalachia and irises. I also love redbud trees and magnolia trees when they are in bloom.
  6. I have four children – 3 daughters and 1 son.
  7. I enjoy long books on the beach, eating pizza in bed, and not having a man to clean up after.
  8. I love a good muscle car show except for the fact that all the cars I wanted as a teenager are now considered antique.
  9. I hate shopping at Walmart but I love their fried chicken in the deli. Guilty pleasure.
  10. I love cannoli and will travel hundreds of miles for a good one.

Want to know more? Leave me a good question in the comments.

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June Kearns
Guest

Lovely to meet you, Evelyn
– that’s a great introduction!

willowdot21
Guest

Hi Evelyn sorry it has taken a while to get back to you but it been a hectic week. It sounds like you have lived a full and useful life. Now it is your turn to do your own thing. It sounds beautiful where you live. I look forward to… Read more »

Deb
Guest

Nice to meet you Evelyn! Look forward to following your journey. I’m 47 and sort of in a “mid-life” thing myself. Not a full blown crisis but trying to get myself back, and photography and blogging are part of that!

Lisa Scott
Guest

Love your introduction Evelyn. Great learning things about you. I have never been to NYC but would love to go sometime. 🙂 I am not flying anywhere every either. Mine sarted with JFK Jr. Would love to go to Paris some day, but probably not going to happen. 🙁 Thanks… Read more »

Cathy Lawdanski
Guest

Glad to meet you, Evelyn. You retweeted one of my tweets & I saw in your Twitter profile that you are also a midlife blogger. I blog at MySideof50.com. Following you on Twitter & looking forward to getting to know you better!

Cara Achterberg
Guest

Love the honesty in your words. And the humor. Thank you for twenty years of trying. I’m certain you brought about change in many lives, and probably yours most of all. Happy to meet you and excited to see where your midlife discovery will take you! I plan to ride… Read more »

Peter H. Green
Guest

Nice to make your acquaintance, Evelyn. My mom was trooper like you, through WW II and its aftermath, although in the city instead of “the hollers.” I’m just putting the finishing touches on her autobiography, finally finished and co-authored by me, since her writing was always put “on hold” for… Read more »

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Grammy
Guest

Nice to meet you Evelyn 🙂

Donna DeGuglielmo
Guest

Great List Evelyn, good to know you … know each other on twitter and thought i would cruise rt over here for a lovely visit. good blog i like the set up happy blogging. blessings donna maire

Meg
Guest

“…in this second part of my life I am trying to find my joy, my purpose, and my creativity.” I can relate! I recently wrote a post about my divorce, and common question about whether my MS caused my marriage to end. I can honestly say that it was actually… Read more »

Linda
Guest

I love this, EE–“The most important thing we can do for ourselves is to find what makes us happy.” It seems so simple, yet it takes such a long part of our life to realize this! I look forward to spending more time reading your blog! A neck in the… Read more »

Christy
Guest

Another traveler in the midlife tribe! The kids are grown and it’s time to embrace the changes. I’m right there with you Evelyn!

debbie
Guest

Hi Evelyn,

I love your list of “10 things about me”, you have a great flair for writing. I would like to get in touch, but the contact page doesn’t seem to be working and I don’t see your email address.

Thanks,
Debbie

Pam
Guest

Hello Evelyn. I’m a 50+ blogger from the Appalachian Mountains of Southwest Virginia. We are practically neighbors! Love your blog.