Category Archives: Web Resources

santafe-flowers

In the land of make-believe


Blogging.

It’s sort of surreal.

marge-treesIf you’ve done it, you know what I’m talking about.

Putting thoughts, ideas, challenges, questions, concerns, issues, photos …out there for the world to sisters sitting on a dock, engrossed in conversationsee or reply, ignore, spam, comment, enjoy, interact, or possibly dismiss.

And yet, we keep doing it. For some of us it’s a daily thing, for others, it’s weekly or monthly. The thing is – over time, it’s an accumulation of posts. It’s a measure of time. It’s a legacy.

What started as a rant, sorrow or frustration or as a way to show the new baby, house or vacation is now something concrete!

Concrete in a virtual sort of way, that is. All those posts, pictures, history, and comments can be wiped out in a flash. Gone. And if that happens (not that it would happen to MY SITE), I’ll know that I am richer for it.

Bloggers Unite.

Anyone up for a walk? I live in Colorado and would be happy to button up and meet you for a stroll, cross-country ski trip, hike or camping event. Oh, you want me to visit you? Right on! Let’s make that happen, ok?

A job hunting I will go…


Job Hunt

Did I tell you I was job hunting? Did I mention how much fun it is?

No? Well, that’s because it isn’t. When I admitted to a friend that I was struggling with this she told me a new Panera Bakery is opening down the street from her. I think that was her idea of a pep talk.

Network Support

There are networks to join that offer support, suggestions, interviewing tips, ways to stay focused, and networking ideas. NoCoNet in Fort Collins meets weekly and has amazing speakers, members and support.

There are websites that give examples of cover letters, resumes and follow-up thank you notes. Or you can just search for ‘cover letter’ and see if someone’s actual cover letter pops up.

There are sites that help you with the interview process and give some behavioral interview questions to review before the meeting. Questions such as “Tell me about a time you worked with a difficult co-worker or client and how you resolved your issues” or “Tell me about a time you had to take initiative and the outcome. “ These questions are great if you’ve prepared for them but if not, you can sit there and sift through all your jobs, decide on which was the best example, then try to structure your answer and … well, by this time the next interviewee is at the door ready to come in and take your seat.

LinkedIn/ Online Job Search

There is LinkedIn.com to post your career, education, background and experiences but remember to align them to your resume.  Any potential employer will go to your LinkedIn profile before you even sit in the chair – count on that fact.

Job search sites such as Indeed.com, HigherEdJobs.com, and SimplyJobs.com will dangle some tidbits out there for the whole world to apply. By the time anyone can get down to my resume they are cranky, critical and burned out.  They are mad that they had to review over 200 applications only to find out that the one they are looking for (mine) is missing one measly item and they decide to TOSS it into the pail with the others.

Wait a second! Don’t they want to know that I am a people person with amazing communication skills? I can tell them about a time when I took initiative and the outcome of it. I can show my training techniques, writing samples and graphic skills.

In this day and age of electronic applications and submissions it’s almost impossible to get across the desk from you. But… we can change that, right?

Have you ever tried to Google yourself?


duckduckgo.comThis is my deal – there is so much to learn, so much to know, so much to share that when I find some tidbit, I just want to write about it so you can benefit from my words. One may call me a teacher, a trainer, an educator and yes –  I am all of the above because I just assume you want to learn too.

When was the last time you searched your name on the internet or ‘Googled’ yourself? I suggest you go to google.com and enter your name and see what comes up. Now try it in yahoo.com and duckduckgo.com. You might find unique links or information from each site.

Is the information that comes up accurate? If not, can you track down the website and get it changed? As you move towards anything in this connected world, you can bet your name will be searched. Want to buy a house, sell a house, rent an office, get a job, buy an appliance, or anything else –  if so, you can bet your name will be checked online.

Potential employers might find you on LinkedIn and learn all about your past jobs, read your recommendations and possibly even contact past colleagues. And they won’t stop at LinkedIn, they will certainly look for you on Facebook. Here they will see the other side of you – the family, funny, wacky side. Or they will see the stupid, drunken and sullen side of you that writes with a sarcastic tone or other such negative image.

Did you sign up for Classmates, Meetup, Youtube, Google Photos, Calorie-Count, Flickr, Pintrest, or other social/gaming networking sites?  If so, your name will probably show up in quite a few search results. Do you have a blog, website, or have you posted articles or photos? Let’s hope they are clean, informative and inspiring to someone who is looking to hire you, date you, enroll you or any other possible scenarios.

We are connected – like it or not. We are ‘out there’ for the good people to find us knowing that bad people will find us too. Take a moment and go to duckduckgo.com and see what you can find on your name. Maybe nothing at all. Maybe lots. Maybe it’s all ok.

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Libraries, Lessons and Learning


It’s Monday. I visited the library. I checked out 2 books, 3 books on cd and 2 music cds. I grabbed some magazines from the “free magazine” table and read the local newspaper. I read some chapters from books on the ‘New Non-Fiction’ bookshelf and paged through some Northern Colorado Business monthly newspapers.

Cover of "Little Bee: A Novel"

Cover of Little Bee: A Novel

Now it’s Tuesday and I am deep into the audio cd book titled Little Bee by Chris Cleave. The story uses first person voice alternating between Little Bee and her plight from a British immigration detention center and Sarah O’Rouke and her family from Surrey.

As each cd finishes, I contemplate whether to load and listen to the next one or to proceed with my Adobe TV learning, lessons and projects. I can’t do both.

In the Rotarian magazine (March 2013) was an article titled Living by the Book by Joe Queenan. On average he reads more than 150 books a year and reads about two hours each day.  Last year I read 59 books and remembered the stories from most of them. I remember audio books much better than I remember books that I hold in my hand and read. I’ve found that if the author gets too much into the scenery or other details, I skip ahead in a book. When listening to it, I might miss some dialogue or other important information so I never skip ahead. One would say I am an auditory learner I suppose.

When I am at the computer, I listen to music while I am working on my projects. The music helps with the flow of learning and for some reason my brows are less furrowed when the beat goes on…

The magazines that I brought home with me (recycled instead of thrown away) are playgrounds of images – of designs that I’ve only noticed now as I work in the world of graphic design. Headers, sub-headers, number of columns and image placement – all mean something now. I think about the person (or team) behind the scene who determined the color structure and the layout. The magazines that I once gathered for content are now kept for ideas for future projects.

My world is surrounded by ongoing learning, lessons and application these days. Free tutorials on youtube.com, Adobe TV, lynda.com and other sites help me to continue learning as I sit in my warm computer room (the rest of the house shivers in 60 degrees temperatures). Learning when to push away at the end of the day is the hard part  – and it usually happens with a smile on my face.

How to Backup Your WordPress Blog Contents


WP Back-Up Lessons Learned

My first post of the year described my passion for writing and blogging – and yet, I’ve hardly written at all this year.

My second post was about being grateful for all the things I have in my world – the open sky and mountain views.

WP Suspended Account

And then WP suspended my account and I had to sit back and look at the fragility of this process. Pouring out words, sharing photos, linking to videos, telling my story, reading and writing comments are all steps along the way.  And then someone steps up and adds a code filled with links  — or spams my blog or email account and I am dead in the water with no recourse.

After researching this WP suspension, I realized it happens quite often. Sometimes it is

tools export

legitimate and bloggers violate the rules. Many times the blog was invaded and hacked and then everything I had written disappeared. Like my Yahoo account, I immediately went into WP and changed my password. Then I began my research. Here’s what I learned:

There is a way to back up your blog and you should probably do it sooner than later so
you don’t lose your ‘stuff.’

Here’s how to backup your account:

  • Log into WordPress.
  • Open the Dashboard.
  • Select Tools > ExportHow to export a your blog files in WordPress
  • Export > Create an XML file containing your posts and comments for you to
    save or import into another WP blog.
  • Export > All Content (this will contain posts, pages and feedback)
  • Click  > Download Export File button

 

My download file was named: insideoutcafe.wordpress.2013-02-18. It is filled with code and can be opened in another WP blog.

Store this away in a folder (I named mine  – Restore Blog) so you can reinstall if your blog gets shutdown, hacked or suspended. If you have it in a folder, you can import it to another system (Blogger, LiveJournal,, Tumblr, TypePad, etc.) and reinstall and move forward.

Hint: You might want to Export your file on a weekly basis!

 So, I learned some valuable lessons  – the most important one was how to EXPORT my WP blog files and protect my ideas, visions, photos, words, videos and insights that I’ve created over the past few years.

Export and Update Passwords on a regularly basis!

  1. Export your blog files on a regular basis.
  2. Change your password and make it hard to crack.  The best passwords are not words at all but a sequence that only you can know. One idea is the first letter of each word in a phrase = April showers bring may flowers = asbmf1! (Always add a number and symbol to your password.).

I hope this information helps you. I am not so frustrated anymore so will turn my attention back to writing, sharing and reading.

If you have some insights and suggestions – PLEASE share them with me!

Gift # 14: ‘Tis the Season


In this lovely season of gifting, parties, light, love and activity is also the season of eating.caloriecount

My next gift is a free online tool that helps you track your food intake and your exercise output. I’ve found that for me, losing weight is about tracking my food intake. The exercise part is easy for me but ‘tracking that ‘one cookie’ or ‘small nibble’ or second helping of … is what slips by me.

Calorie-count.com will help you as you set your goals, track your food, visit with others in the community, and learn about yourself.  For me, I use it – it works, I am focused and then I forget or get lazy. Each time I return I fall in love all over again with the simplicity of the tool and how it keeps me on target.

If you decide to join and want a buddy, send me an email and so we can connect! – (mkatherine55@gmail.com)

Calorie-Count (caloriecount.about.com)

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Lucky Gift # 13: Refdesk


Refdesk.com your one stop visit for references, puzzles, maps, dictionaries ... and so much more!

Refdesk.com your one stop visit for references, puzzles, maps, dictionaries … and so much more! 

If you’re looking for an online reference for an item – begin here at refdesk.com (Reference Desk).

This page is CHOCK full of fun sites, links to news, dictionaries, weather, good news, quotes, encyclopedias, pictures and words of the day, daily diversions (think games, humor, book lists, horoscopes, view of the night sky, almanacs…)

The best thing about Refdesk.com is that it really is a good source to reference information and it’s a wonderful place to just spend time looking. It’s a portal site which means it points you to other sites. All the links on this page actually work.

It’s free information for everyone. 

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