I used to just have a few blogs in my reader and could catch up once a week, now I am checking in multiple times a day! I added all the blogs from our class and the blogs we discussed in class on Thursday. Then I started having fun. I like the "explore" feature in Google Reader. I'll admit that some of the stuff it recommends isn't for me, but I have found a couple enjoyable/informative reads that way.
Topix has way too much going on. I was distracted before I even tried to search.
One "search" I have found useful is checking out what other people are following. I added a blog roll so you can use my blog as a search too.