Blogging for fun and money

So I started this blog as a lark, for fun, as a way to make myself write both because I love to write (but have a small motivation problem) but also because I was in that awkward stage (again? I thought that was in junior high!) when your children are in school all day and you are not 24/7 and you may need to go back to school or work but you don’t know what to do, so I did this.  I started writing and finding my voice and some people liked it. I submitted some writing samples and some other people offered to pay me and so they did (yes, and I cried when they said they would pay me and when it was finally published – here) but not for sentences like this one.  I am thrilled beyond belief and so then I really got into it and started to treat this like a job because it can be and it is and so I have to learn things like ROI (return on investment) and social media and about Twitter and Alexa rankings and Technorati and SEO and Google Analytics and HTML and CSS (okay, s0 I still don’t really know the difference but CSS looks easier).

So here are some tools that make your blog better. I mean, maybe they will help. Anyway, I like them.

Hubspot is a software and advice site that lets you grade your Twitter, Website, Blog and even Facebook. Click on the highlighted text and go to Hubspot. Of course they want you to subscribe to their service but even if you don’t there are good tools to be had (more even than I have listed).

Mama’s Losin’ It is a great Mom blog with writing prompts (and good links to other sites), great and very helpful blog tips and a funny section called Dear Ellen where Mama Kat asks Ellen Degeneres if she can be on her show. There is even a song. So so funny! Ellen should put this Mommy Blogger on her show!

Twitter is fun and has a new design and there are tons of apps that go with Twitter. Go to oneforty for great applications for twitter. Founded by Laura Fitton (@Pistachio on Twittter). Great stuff in one place – I have written about it before – really it is that good.

Other resources include, but are not limited to, Copyblogger, Problogger and (shameless self-promotion) Coffee Shop Bloggers. I also subscribe to more than one Mom Blog site – there are many, but that is another post!

I moved this blog from to and only cried once

Maybe sort of twice but quietly…so the customer service representative couldn’t hear me – but then I told him I was crying because it was gone – all of it – links, photos, everything was gone. I knew I had it backed up but when I couldn’t sign in and couldn’t access it …I kind of lost it – a little.  He was very nice, professional and understanding (my site is hosted by Go Daddy).

So if you don’t have a blog here are things you do not have to know so you probably don’t and if you have a blog you can skip ahead to the next paragraph…or if you are a Cook’s Illustrated last paragraph reader, you know who you are.

Blogs have different publishing platforms (sites that offer blogs like, Typepad and Blogger) some are free and all offer different templates and features (widgets or plug-ins or gadgets) that help you organize your blog and tweak how you want it to look. There are lots of articles and even more opinions about which is better –   Pragmatic Mom did a nice job on it back in March for Coffee Shop Bloggers  – here on vs. and wordpress vs. blogger. Go ahead – read them and come back, they are fast and informative. I will wait.

So about a thousand years ago (in internet time – ask me about how I measure time later) or in February of this year, I wrote my first post. I chose because Pragmatic Mom said it was better than Blogger and I believed her and she is right,  it is better (I know because I also write at Coffee Shop Bloggers and it is a Blogger site).

So I got my free and technically challenging blog (you can do more but you have to fuss with it more) and was on my way. I played with it, changed it, struggled with it, figured it out and decided that I wanted to put ads on my blog (which you can with Blogger but not, just – counterintuitive, I know) so I had to move it.  I have been terrified of moving it and even started to a few months ago but chickened out panicked and cancelled my order to host it thought better of it.

So I bought the hosting from Go Daddy (there is also Blue Host (also very good customer service – I bought initial hosting from them and cancelled it with no problem when I couldn’t do it), DreamHost, Media Temple and Laughing Squid – so many choices) and waited a week…because I am a little nervous like that. I knew I would need a few hours of uninterrupted time and decided to wait until the kids were in camp. Yesterday was rainy (great for some inside time) and I knew I had a few hours so I made the switch. At first a nice but slightly cool sounding CSR walked me through DNS and FTP changes (this is so super boring that I don’t even want to admit I know what they are but I do and if you really want to know, comment below and I will email you about it) then he blithely told me changes would take about 24 hours and signed off.

That’s when my blog went blank. Six months of almost daily posting – I am not saying it is all wonderful or even must have material but it was mine;  the good, the mediocre and the I-am-stuck (or pressed for time or think my numbers suck)-so-I-put-a-bunch-of-random-things-up posts. I knew it was backed up but really froze in that deer in the headlights way.

I called GoDaddy and waited through the voice mail prompts that I was getting too familiar with and was connected to John.  John was so kind, calm and professional. It did not hurt that he was understanding and not mocking of my Mommy Blog and acknowledged that I had a boat load of stuff and that he would be bummed, too, if it had happened to him, which it wouldn’t because he was so comfortable and knowledgeable and even showed me how to watch my site being rescued and sent me a link to an article (from GoDaddy) so I could read more about it.

The it was fine until it died again and I thought I did something to it but the host server was done for just 10 minutes and it is fine again. Phew.

How To Use Twitter For Business: 5 More Incredibly Interesting Case Studies (via Jeffbullas’s Blog)

Great post by Jeff Bullas on Twitter for Business.

Here is the thing, I like to read about social media and have found a bunch of sites that have great information. The following blog always has great info and I wanted to share it. If you are not into it and wondering where my latest recipe is, hang on. It’ll be a day or so while I process June. I posted this in CoffeeShopBloggers, where I write about social media, too.

How To Use Twitter For Business: 5 More Incredibly Interesting Case Studies In the last post I listed 5 Twitter case studies and how companies are using Twitter for business. Due to the popularity of the post and with over 737 views in 48 hours it seems there is slight unkempt appetite for this information. So here are 5 more companies and how they have experimented, tested and implemented Twitter to push their brand out into the market place. 1. @CoffeeGroundz CoffeeGroundz is a popular, albeit modest, Houston, TX based … Read More

via Jeffbullas’s Blog

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