The blog might be up and down a bit over the next few days – we seem to be experiencing some kind of attack on our server. :( NOT COOL!
Here is a new feature on the blog which will be seen monthly from now on.
Blogs added to the feedreader since 20th July –
Adventures in HEL
And I Get Dressed
Blurb from the Burbs
Bright and Precious
clothes and shit
Coolin with kids
Drifting through life
I’m a Big Girl Now
My Vintage Childhood
Not Afraid to Wear Heels
styleitonline.com | styleitonline.com
The Je ne sais quoi
The Kitchen Magpie
Welcome to my feedreader, bloggers! There are 23 of you which represents 9 days worth of travelling the web and getting lost along the way but eventually finding my way to your blog, which I liked a lot. While there, I probably read back about 40+ posts or so.
At the end of 6 months or so, if I am still loving your blog as much as I did when I added you, I will add you to my blogroll. YAY!
Most of you will know what a feedreader is, but in case you do not, click here for info. The quick run down – it is an awesome program which collects new articles that bloggers post. So when you post something new, I get a copy, and if I have the time and something to say, I will click through and comment.
This month as I only just updated the blogroll on the 20th of July, these are new reads added to the feedreader in the past 9 days. If you are not listed here but I commented on your blog in the past 24-48 hours or so, check back late August and you will see your blog listed. :)
If you are looking for a feedreader for yourself, I’m not especially familiar with the latest ones out there as I use a home made version on our personal server, but maybe some of the commentors here can chime in with what they are using. :)
I’ve updated the blogroll page – the previous blogroll was a code from Google Reader but once they went kaboom the blogroll also vanished..
This blogroll has been hell to create involving the other half, magic coding and secret tricks to alphabetise the list, plus then I had to go through the list and make sure the URLs were correct which involved manually clicking through to each blog.
Please do not think that if you are listed last that means anything other than your blog begins with Z. The list is alphabetical.
In fact, in my feedreader everything is contained within folders, and Zazzy would probably be shocked to know she is in my very first folder which is rather oddly named aaaafaves. Frogdancer and her fellow Aussies are just below in AAussies
But wait, a couple of these are Aussies? Yes, this is true. I have to go through a massive list of new blogs I subscribed to over the past 6 months to work out if they should stay in Ladies or head to Aussies. I was on a fashion blog subscribing spree and not considering the long term organisation of my feeds.
Don’t worry Ladies, you still get read on the day you publish a post – and organising my feeds is presently high on my todo list, after fixing my blogroll and choosing and customising a new blog design.
As I have been clicking through to the blogs on the list, I’ve noticed a lot of them have not updated in a while, some dating back to 2006.
After going through the entire list, there are 321 blogs listed – and that is after I deleted those which went to a wrong place, no longer existed or had not updated since 2007.
I don’t delete a blog from my feed reader unless the blog no longer exists, which means if and when people return to it, I get the next post they write. If it is on my blogroll, it is in my feed reader. :)
My current cut off for the blogroll is – 2008 – if you posted after 2008 and you are in my feed reader, you should have been listed on the blogroll.
If you are reading this and you have a blog and you are missing from the new Blogroll list please let me know in the comments for this post.
Each day I would have somewhere around 150-180 new posts to read. Some of the blogs have 5-10 posts a day, though, so numbers are not really a fair representation of, well, anything.
I’m going to put together a little featurette on some of my most favourite blogs in the world, as well as my most favourite bloggers. I might even try to get some of them to answer a few questions if possible.
A small update on the work front – this is going to be a longer process than I’d hoped. I’d love to be able to talk about it here but it would not be especially safe to do so. I might put up a protected post later if this drags on too long because I might want to rage type it all out. If I do, all you need to do to get the password for it is email me – best to use the contact form here on the blog. :)
With 2012 in the rear view mirror now, I thought it might be a good time to look back at the most read posts on the blog over the past 12 months. Unsurprisingly, a lot of them were written a while back, in 2006, 2007, 2008, when I was blogging a lot more..
A lot of kids looking to research school reports on these first 3 movie reviews..
For a while there I had no idea why people were finding my blog for weird French names – now I know. :)
This is clearly still a popular topic for high school english class, with lots of searches for things like this – “what is the social message of dead poets society”.
Morten is still popular, y’alls! I’m planning some more of these types of posts this year – stay tuned. :)
Please, people, leave them snakes alone! I get constant searches for how to kill red belly black snake. Don’t kill them. Leave them be. Call a snake catcher. Seek professional advice. Stay away from the snake. Snakes can kill you!
I would like to see this at #1 for most read posts. At least it is in the top 10! Online scams are becoming more of a problem and the scammers are changing tactics all the time.
I knew when I started blogging about Lite N Easy that these posts would end up being referred to a lot because there was not much out there in the www about the food supplied by the company. Not surprised to see this wrap up post in the top 10 for 2012. This was the only post written in 2012 to make it onto the top 10 list!
Time Management is a popular topic, many people searching for this and this post has some great ideas many of which I still use.
I never thought when I wrote this post back in 2008 about a lack of vitamin B causing warm feelings in my leg that it would become one of the most read posts here on the blog. People search for this all the time.
This was an excellent post full of detail, and also because this kind of dryer has become more and more popular. We still have the dryer, and it is still going strong.
Anything you haven’t read in the links above? Click through and have a read. You might be surprised. :)
For those who were visiting the blog to drop their Entrecards, apologies. I have now removed the widget because I just received yet another email with yet more changes – ones that were going to put paid ads onto my blog so Entrecard can make money.
Entrecard was a great idea but the people behind it have well and truly screwed the pooch.
Some of today’s search terms –
sock stuck in front loader
how do cows know the time??
make myself a fake check online
To the person searching for the last one – that would be *illegal* – not a good idea! I’ve been asking myself how do cows know when it is time to go home for ages, but I suspect they really don’t care what the time is otherwise. ;) It isn’t like they have to get to an appointment. And congratulations to the person who got a sock stuck in their front loader – I did not know that was possible, quite a feat!
It’s been a crazy couple of weeks and I have to say my email inboxes are becoming a major problem for me – I just can’t keep on top of everything.
Last week Lightening sent me an Out Of Your Niche post. I got so busy late last week I totally forgot to post it.
Then this week Sandy from Fighting Fatigue sent me an Out Of Your Niche post. I was going to post them both yesterday but again, I totally forgot.
Today I am going to post both of them and I deeply apologise. I am going to find a way to get on top of all of this – a habit to get into so I can find things in my inboxes. I also have to go back to shutting down my email and focusing on what I’m doing because I keep getting interrupted with new emails and I drop what I’m doing to tackle those. The main reason for that is because I want to be able to help those I am hosting with their issues and problems as soon as they contact me, but this isn’t working out. Especially when I’m getting 50+ emails a day!
So if I don’t reply to your email right away please be patient. There’s only one of me. :) I do type fast, but there’s a lot to cover sometimes.
At this point in time Snoskred no longer has time to write paid reviews, and so you’ll notice a few changes to the disclosure policy which can be found in the beautiful graphic bar which runs across the top of the page there. I’m not saying this is a permanent change, just that right now given all the work involved in hosting blogs for people, creating graphics and moving blogs etc I simply don’t have the time or energy to do paid reviews.
There is a new page in the navigation bar called Graphics. At the moment this contains a set of gorgeous (even if I say so myself) metallic RSS icons which are available for ya’all to download and use. More RSS icons will be coming, probably in color packs like greens, blues, pinks, reds, etc. You’ll notice in there that I mention creating header graphics for blogs – I do that for free if you’re hosting a blog with me, but if anyone wants one for their blog that I’m not hosting I’m happy to put it together for a small cost.
There is also a page up there for WordPress Blog Hosting, with a bit more info about what is included.
In order to make room for these pages the Advertise page had to go. If anyone has queries about advertising just use the contact form to get in touch.
It’s been a crazy few days here at Chalet Snoskred. I wanted to take a moment to make those changes to the pages today and also to make those RSS icons available to everyone. Hopefully I’ll be able to put together some more WordPress Training Wheels posts this week.
Is there anything specific that people want a WordPress Training Wheels post written about? Say so in the comments. ;)
I have to let you know that I’m feeling unhappy. I’m unhappy because I am not Superwoman, and I am not able to do everything. I am not even Batman though I used to have a trusty sidekick but he seems to have vanished just lately.
There are a lot of things that I need to do every day just to keep my head above water. Then there are things I would like to do, things I want to do. One of those things I want to do is respond to comments when people leave them here on the site. I also want to make comments on the blogs I read. But time is my enemy. Recently I have not had time to do much commenting or responding to comments and I wanted to let you know that this might be something that I’m not going to have time for over the next couple of months.
You see, Blogger / Google have made some changes to their free blog system, the most annoying one being that people now cannot leave comments like they used to. Meg from Dipping Into The Blogpond has been writing a few posts about it –
It seems they have really screwed this one up – people are now not getting notifications that a comment has been left. And something has gone majorly wrong with photos as well. Blogger users are furious, blogging up a blogstorm – and the mass exodus to WordPress has begun.
That’s where I come in. I now offer hosting for WordPress at the bargain price of $5 per month, and I also offer to make it all happen without much effort on the part of the person moving. However it is quite a big effort on my part to do this, especially if the blogger has a lot of photos which they had on their old blog. I have to go to each photo and click on it, and then save the image to my hard drive, and then upload all the images to their new WordPress blog. There used to be a plugin that did this almost automatically but because something has gone majorly wrong with photos? That no longer works.
Do not get me wrong – I am happy and thrilled to be helping people to move away from Blogger and take control of their blogging. I enjoy the process – some parts more than other parts. I’m saying it takes time and some of that time I used to use for responding to comments here and commenting on other blogs. If you’re on Blogger and you want to move over to WordPress I’d love to help you do it, just use the contact page to get in touch.
There may be a few changes here on the blog. There may be days when you only get the song of the day post. If this happens please do not panic, it just means I ran out of time to post. I am also going to be posting a few how to WordPress things for everyone who is moving over to it, which may not be of interest to those who don’t use WordPress.
to a comment you leave, please do not take it personally. I am still reading all the comments and I appreciate them hugely, and when I do have time I certainly will try to respond to them.
If you have been thinking about moving away from Blogger, the time is ripe my friends. You may notice a drop in comments to your blog simply because Blogger have made commenting like jumping through a bunch of hoops – or they have simply taken away the option for people to leave their URL. Many commentors will now steer well clear of Blogger because it is all too hard, or they feel annoyed that they can’t leave a link to their blog. And if you DO get a comment, you might not even know about it, because it seems the comment notification system is broken.
But who knows what is next? The thing is, Blogger might be free, but you have absolutely NO control over anything that happens there in the future. If you move now, you can get started on building up links to your blog again. If you stay to see what happens and decide to move later? Any links you may get to your blogspot blog in the meantime will become worthless to you.
You should get a custom domain and use it with Blogger. That way if you choose to move, the links can move with you. Custom domains are available from many locations, I personally use Go Daddy and I recommend them. You can get a domain starting at just under $3US.
If I could double the amount of hours in the day, I would. Until then, I apologise that I can’t get everything done that I would like to do. I especially apologise that I can’t comment on blogs as often as I would like. I’m still reading, though.
You may have noticed that I put a page up with the list of plugins I use here on the blog.
Basically this plugin gives you much greater ability to change the look of your posts than you usually have in WordPress. It contains everything but the kitchen sink – from advanced color picker to add custom characters to tables. The best part is that it is fully customisable – you can remove any of the buttons for things you don’t use regularly. I love it!
Akismet is the most well known of the anti-spam plugins available with WordPress. Basically it checks comments to see if they are spam. It takes information from other bloggers using the plugin as well, so spammers are pretty much screwed.
Unfortunately that means it can sometimes get it badly wrong – some bloggers who comment a lot around the place tend to end up in Akismet. That includes me – I’ve had to drag my own comments out of there from time to time. This is not surprising, because not all bloggers are as intelligent as you and I are, and they don’t take the time to visit someone’s blog and see if they are a real person who just comments a lot before marking their comment as spam.
And of course, let us not mention those bloggers who put people in Akismet just because they don’t like what they said in their comment, or they have a personal grudge against that blogger. Oh, we just did. Oops.
Akismet requires a bit of work from me as a blogger, I need to keep a close eye on it to make certain it is not putting legitimate comments into spam. However it does catch a lot of spam too, so it is worth using.
This plugin helps you when it comes to search engines. I can’t quite explain how but the guys over at the home of the plugin do a better job so visit the site and read about how it works. I like it but sometimes I’m too lazy to write the things myself so that is where the auto generate comes in handy.
This is a really important plugin and I highly recommend it. This does everything necessary to allow me to have the contact me page and for the messages sent using that page to get to me. You even have choices with how it looks. Pure brilliance.
This plugin allows you to set the amount of posts seen on different pages. Oddly enough exactly as the name of the plugin suggests! Go figure. ;) But it works a treat and it is much better than having everything on your blog at the same amount of posts you want on your front page. I have 4 posts on the front page, and something like 25 on all other pages now.
This plugin basically works like a funnel forcing all options of reading your feeds into feedburner. That’s pretty important. I don’t have the technical terms to explain precisely why. It just is.
This plugin is not just for Google – it creates a sitemap which Ask.com, Google, Live Search and YAHOO can all understand and access and it notifies those search engines when your site is updated.
Ah Lucia, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways.. The trouble with being a do follow blog is that some spammy bloggers and spammers in general will drop by and leave a comment just to get a link back to themselves. They might say intelligent sounding things, leave long comments, or they might be lazy and just say “Great Site”. Yeah right. Tell me something I don’t already know! ;)
However if you use Lucia’s Linky Love, you can set the number of times someone has to comment before their link is made do follow. You can choose anything from 3-10 times. It is a great way of rewarding your regular commentors for leaving comments yet at the same time not giving links to spammers or lazy people just trying to build links to their site.
This plugin allows you to put WordPress into maintenence mode if you need to take your site offline in order to update – and it allows you to put a page up to let people know how long the site will be down for. That page can be customized to suit yourself, also.
Very handy, especially if you have a test blog – nobody else can get in there at all, you can have a page that says “This is a test blog, visit the real blog at blahdeblah” yet you can login and work on the test blog.
pMetrics is a stats tracker. They give you a free 30 day trial of their full version tracker. I tried it out and liked it so much I signed up for a year at $19.95. The design of the tracking site is pure heaven on the eyes – it is the best looking tracker I’ve ever seen. Plus, the tracker works ok too! Though no tracker gives you 100% accurate results, this one is reasonably accurate. It has some great options like “spy” where you can see live tracking results from your blog.
This plugin displays a list of similar posts to the post being read. It can be a great way for people to find more information on that topic – and an excellent way to draw people to other pages within your site. You can set the number of posts to show, as well.
I’m borrowing the description of this one from the plugin page in my WordPress because it puts what it does better than I can – Eliminates spam trackbacks by (1) checking if the IP address of the trackback sender is equal to the IP address of the webserver the trackback URL is referring to and (2) by retrieving the web page located at the URL used in the trackback and checking if the page contains a link to your blog.
I’m using a hacked version of this plugin created by the great Andy Beard himself called “AntiSocial”. It includes no follow on all the links (to save your link juice for things other than social bookmarking sites) and it also has a few different options within it – for Sphinn and StumbleUpon which are two of my most used social bookmarking sites.
Enables your commentors to subscribe to comments – this is a wonderful thing. It means often discussions continue on longer than they would without it. And sometimes you will find months later someone will comment on a post and generate a whole new discussion. Brilliant!
I am seriously crazy about this plugin but The Other Half has modified it slightly so that it works better. The original version looks for certain patterns which are present in a lot of spam emails and it also allows you to put in words often used by spammers to make sure those words don’t get past the plugin again.
The spammers are always changing their methods in order to get their spam past filters like this. I noticed they were using a lot of different mis-spellings for common drugs but the actual URL to their site was always spelt correctly. The plugin did not seem to check URL’s for the often used words. So the other half modified the plugin so that words put in will be rejected whether they are in the comment itself or the URL entered by the spam bot. This means all the drug spam is automatically rejected now. I’ll have to get the other half to write a post on how to modify it sometime.
Between moving to WordPress on October the 9th and writing this on the 20th of November, TanTan has blocked 3631 spam comments. Because it blocks them before WordPress has to deal with them, this has saved a lot of load on my blog. Joe Tan explains a bit more about saving CPU cycles and load on the home page of this plugin, seen below. (the modified version is what you would get on your blog if you hosted with us, it is fantastic)
This shows you where other readers went from the blog post you’re currently reading. At the bottom of any page on my blog below the comment box you will see “Readers who viewed this page also viewed” and then a list of any other pages they may have viewed.
Another stats tracker. You need an API key from WordPress.com in order to use this one. You can access it from within your WordPress Dashboard, which is very handy. Not that I check my stats anywhere near as often as I used to but I will generally land in there once a day because the stats give you a quick overview of referrers, top posts viewed, search engine terms and outgoing clicks for both today and yesterday. So it’s an easy way to see what is going on with my site at a glance.
Ok so I’m not the most technical of people. Better you read the site of the person who wrote it rather than listen to some garbled explanation from me. But simply put, it caches your blog to make your site faster. It can be really handy for me sometimes when I get a big amount of incoming traffic at once which does happen from time to time.
Yay for polls. Basically it allows you to have polls but there’s a lot of functionality within this plugin. It does a lot of stuff related to polls. :)
Found at one of my all time favourite blogs, the Reader Appreciation Project, this plugin enables your commentors to edit their comments after posting them. I find this to be much better than the “preview comments” type plugins. My commentors have used this option 37 times so far!
Makes it a lot easier for you to embed you tube videos. ;) Read the site below for more info on that.