Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Three Years of Blogging Happiness



Jollett Etc. is three years old today.  To celebrate, I’ve given her a little facelift.  A couple weeks ago, Alex Daw of Family Tree Frog invited all interested bloggers to join her in a quick project to revamp our blogs.  We visited one another, praised what we liked and made suggestions for improvement. 

Some lovely compliments about the color of my blog, the font style and size, the format, and use of photos really brightened my day.  Aw shucks, I’m still blushing. 

At the same time, some really good suggestions for improvement have now been implemented:
  • I like my color scheme because it is appropriate for the historical focus of my blog, but I also agreed with one comment that it was drab.  So I lightened the background and added a new blog banner.  The colors brighten up the place yet retain that antique feel.
  • I added the Search box since so many bloggers mentioned it.  (Was that always a Blogger option?  I don’t remember seeing it three years ago.)
  • Several bloggers recommended moving “About Me” up in the sidebar, so I did.  One person said it was too long.  In editing, I decided it was also outdated, so I started over.
  • I found a new “Email Me” image with a more vintage feel in keeping with the focus of my blog.
  • Several noted that my sidebar is cluttered.  Unfortunately, it is still cluttered because whatever was removed was replaced by something else.  I edited my labels cloud dramatically by restricting it to family surnames.  That helps somewhat.
  • The family pages have been updated with newly revised family charts. Some pages were eliminated either because they were redundant or woefully under-researched.  Maybe they’ll make a return one day. 
  • I updated my photo, not that it matters.

While in the remodeling mood, I also implemented some changes suggested by Thomas MacEntee and Lisa Alzo in Blogger Boot Camp:
  • I added more “follow” options.
  • I added some Twitter and Pinterest buttons.
  • I added copyright notices to blog posts.   

Do I know how to celebrate or what?



©2014, Wendy Mathias.  All rights reserved.

29 comments:

  1. Love the new look. Happy 3rd anniversary.

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  2. Love the new look of your blog, Wendy. It suits the historical focus of your blog. And I just love your new picture. Its super :)

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    1. Oh well thanks and thanks for stopping by. The picture is from my daughter's wedding, so I managed to look a little better that day.

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  3. Happy Anniversary! The new look is great and I really like what you did to the family pages - I need to do some revamping of mine also. And thanks for the 'search this blog' note - I didn't have one either but I just added to mine. Thanks and good luck on your next 3 years and beyond.

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    1. Thanks. The exercise of revamping my blog was good for my mood and enthusiasm.

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  4. Wow, I feel so out of the loop, I missed this! I'm headed out on vacation today, so I'll have to revisit this later. I very much like your new blog header photo, and will have to study it some more!

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    1. Have fun on your vacation. Do I need to say, "Take lots of pictures"??

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  5. I love the new look! Happy blogoversary!

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    1. Thanks. It's given me a boost, just like getting my hair done at the beauty parlor.

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  6. It looks great, Ms. Wendy! I didn't realize that your blog was only 3 years old. We must have met when you first started, and I am so happy about that.

    Hugs,
    Kathy M.

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    1. Yes, I think we "met" through Sepia Saturday but got to know one another better through the A to Z April Challenge. We bonded over the "grass widow." HA!

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  7. Yes - you should be celebrating for three years of successful blogging, and I do like the new look, especially the banner heading. Like you I did not know about the search facility before and have added it to mine. I also like your "Follow Me on Pinterest" which I would like to copy. - it stands out much more than my little label. Thank you for such interesting posts (love the photographs) and for the support given to other bloggers.

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    1. Oh, what a nice thing to say. I'm so glad for Alex's invitation to participate. It really opened my eyes.

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  8. Happy Blogiversary! Love the new look of your blog! It looks great! I especially like the new banner. Awesome job Wendy!

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    1. Thanks! I am pleased with how the banner turned out. I couldn't have done it without Thomas's tutorial.

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    2. Hi Wendy,

      I want to let you know that your wonderful blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at http://janasgenealogyandfamilyhistory.blogspot.com/2014/08/follow-friday-fab-finds-for-august-29.html

      Have a great weekend!

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  9. Happy blogiversary, Wendy! I really need to do some updating on my blog - thanks for the inspiration. Now if I could just some time :-)

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    1. Revamping my blog was a good exercise. I realized that even though I looked at my blog many times a day, there was a lot I had just stopped noticing.

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  10. Happy blogiversary and I love that new look! I need to go back and do a good look over on mine. I think we get use to the way our blogs look and just go on with it, but it's a good reminder to do some blogger housekeeping every once in awhile.....even blogs can get dusty.

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    1. Exactly -- just like that "About Me" paragraph. When did I last look at that? It must have been in 2011 because it no longer made sense. Your blog is like your house - you live in it and don't notice the paint chipping or the sofa wearing out.

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  11. Congratulations on three great years, Wendy! Your changes look wonderful. I especially like your new header and the blue of the letters. Your email me image fits the feel of your blog perfectly, and I like your new photo and that you moved the about me to the top. I think it's always nice to know who the writer of a blog is.

    I don't usually look at my blog except when I'm previewing a post, in which case I'm looking at the post and not the blog. But I finally noticed a few months ago that I needed to do some housekeeping and slimmed down the contents of my sidebar, added pages at the top, and made a few other pages.

    I don't have much of a visual memory so when I go to a blog where some changes have been made, I realize that it looks different but usually can't remember how it looked before. So, your blog looks great and here's to many more years of wonderful blog posts, Wendy.

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    1. When I got comments about my sidebar being cluttered, I started paying more attention to other people's sidebars. Apparently clutter doesn't bother me because I never notice it or think about it. Your sidebar would have gotten high marks from these bloggers who critiqued mine.

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  12. Wendy, your new "face lift" looks wonderful!! I also really like the new banner, I'll have to check out Thomas' tutorial. The last time I changed my blog look it was entirely by accident, but I left it. Next time I might put more thought into it! Congratulations on 3 years!!

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    1. If I had changed something by accident, I would have flipped out, I'm sure. One year I changed the look for Christmas and was petrified I wouldn't get the original look back. After that, I didn't "decorate" for Christmas - I was nervous all month.

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  13. Well done, Wendy. Three year blogiversary...Congrats! Great job on your redecorating. Every gal needs a makeover, new hairdo and a change of lipstick every once in awhile, and I'd say this look suits you perfectly.

    I have often thought of adding a 'Search This Blog' window to CollectInTexas Gal, but I hesitate simply for the fact it would probably blow a fuse searching through all my BS. Blogger already sends me error messages and threatens to delete stuff. I'd move if I didn't already have so much BS to move. Maybe I should clean house.

    Sorry I missed your 'Big Day'....I've been out of pocket for over a week. BTW...you're blogiversary reminded me that mine was this month, too. I totally forgot and missed it...again for the fourth time in five years of blogging.
    Sue at CollectInTexas Gal

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    1. I missed my own 2-year blogiversary.

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