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Have you noticed the new feature of WordPress right on the comment box? Whereas before they only have  “approve” and “like”, now they have added  “trash,  “edit”  and “spam”. I was wondering whether Akismet is still working. It is. I just deleted a few spam comments. I wonder why these people keep on writing those nonsense, those comments are not even related to the post. They have their own stories, sometimes their comments are even longer than my blog post but I don’t read them, I just press “delete permanently”.  As I have said before in some previous posts, they are quite annoying. I don’t see the relevance of reading them before deleting. Occasionally though, some valid comments  are in my spam folder so I reverse it and put them in the comment box.

According to WordPress, I reached my 10th year here the other day.  Well, it took me just one blog post when I opened this account since I didn’t even know how to customize it.  A year after I posted that lone poem, I started writing here so I don’t really consider that year-long hiatus counted as my first year. I only started  actual blogging more than a year after,  just  when I found out I had colon cancer.

Back then, Multiply was still alive and I had about a hundred friends there who are now mostly on Facebook too. I think those were the best years of blogging and posting Music videos and my own CDs at the site.  Multiply was a wonderful platform. My brother even subscribed me to the premium plan of the site.  It has closed its doors a few years ago.

How’s your blogging journey? Are you still inspired to share your thoughts in cyberspace?

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If I were to summarize all the blog posts I’ve written over the years, it amounts to 2,715 all in all. That’s  about five blog sites , of which the four are almost inactive.

Dreams and Escapes  – 2,204 posts  (this one not included)

Gardens and Empty Spaces –  108 posts

Our Precious Bundle  Of Joy  – 145 posts

Colors – 171 posts

Dreams  Never End –  87 posts.

Dreams and Escapes is my main blog of course.  It’s where I started my blog at WordPress. Back then, I didn’t even know how to customize, and personalize a site. I l;earned through the years and writing became an obsession. It comes easy once you started.  As I have said before, it picked up last 2011 when I joined the Post A Day writing challenge.  I am quite afraid to do it now although I dream of it still.

As I wanted to separate my posts which are  most about plants  and blooms in my garden, I started a newer one  called Gardens and Empty Spaces I was inspired by several blogs  I discovered here about gardens.  Our Precious Bundle Of Joy came about when Nate was born five years ago.  I was too enthusiastic before  in updating this one until Nate was a year old. Nowadays, I write posts about him at my main blog. Overall, there are about twenty or more re-posted blogs on these two sites.   (that happens when I am quite lazy to do another post on the same subject…haha 🙂 )

Colors came to fruition  when I noticed that most of my high-resolutions shots were slowly eating up my allowed free space.  This is where I post my macro shots, mostly about flowers and blooms,  some places we’ve been to, food and such.  I love the Duo-tone theme of Colors.  I seldom post there for the simple reason that I no longer have a good camera to take photos. I  mostly use my tab and cellphone when I take  a shot. Each photo has a short write-up.

As I am nearing the end of my allowed free space here, I started a new blog. It has a different title and most entries  do not exceed five hundred words but  they are always accompanied by photos.  I have more than a thousand photos at Photobucket, so many albums in one site but they are all marked  “private”.  Dreams Never End is still a work in progress just like the rest of my blogs.

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It was one those lazy, lazy days. Yes I know, it’s just the start of March. Last January, I dreamed of  blogging every day but that’s not to be. There are days when  I can’t think of nothing to blog about. Ideas are hard to come by and a good content is not even in the offing.

I spent almost the whole day reading aside from an hour of loading the wash and ironing late in the afternoon.   For the last three days, I found two books that I rated five   stars and four stars  consecutively. One was entitled Summer At the Comfort Food Cafe by Debbie Johnson, my first book of the author.  It’s been sometime since I read a feel good story. Lovely characters, all of them.  It speaks about friendship, family relationships and love. It’s comfort at its best, a fantastic read. The other night I started on The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah.   I found the author some two or three years ago and I read a lot of her books.  The Great Alone is even lovelier than her famous The Nightingale.   This was set in the 1970’s. Alaska, a great and beautiful country  but has a harsh climate specially during winter. Winter lasts for six months and the sun shines for only six hours a day.  The wilderness, the beauty of it all. This is my 31st read this year.

I can’t help but write down some lovely quotes while reading it:

“Were you ever out in the Great Alone, 
when the moon was awful clear, 
And the icy mountains hemmed you in 
with a silence you most could hear; 
With only the howl of a timber wolf, and 
you camped there in the cold, 
A half-dead thing in a stark, dead world, 
clean mad for the muck called gold; 
While high overhead, green, yellow and 
red, the North Lights swept in bars?”

“Winter tightened its grip on Alaska. The vastness of the landscape dwindled down to the confines of their cabin. The sun rose at quarter past ten in the morning and set only fifteen minutes after the end of the school day. Less than six hours of light a day. Snow fell endlessly, blanketed everything. It piled up in drifts and spun its lace across windowpane, leaving them nothing to see except themselves. In the few daylight hours, the sky stretched gray overhead; some days there was merely the memory of light rather than any real glow. Wind scoured the landscape, cried out as if in pain.

 

I think I’ve reached another milestone in blogging.   I didn’t expect reaching more than 3,000  followers  since it is really not my number one priority. There are only a handful who regularly make comments and like my posts.  I am more into the number of visits the blog has garnered through the years.  The silent followers and visitors, those who  probably just read  one or two posts then move on. I don’t mind, what is important is  how one tries to reach out and  having  those wonderful visits  and followers is a bonus. Presently, I have  a total of 517,780  in my stats.

Blogging?  It is still a continuous fascination and joy for me. When my hands could no longer press the keyboard, when I could no longer think of something to write about, I’ll stop blogging. For now though, it’s still a GO 🙂

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I was a little surprised when I saw at least  ten comments still pending in my dashboard. They’re from fellow blogger friends  who commented to different previous posts on my blog. I didn’t receive any notification for this hence the late reply.

Is WordPress having those glitches again or  I just missed reading them before? How come they were comments to not just one post but several ones?  I make it a point to check my dashboard everyday when I am here so I am updated even with the spam comments. Did I overlook them?  Does this happen to you too?

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Playing safe.

Do you do a backup of your blog? Do you copy everything just in case it gets lost in cyberspace?

Once a year I export my blog to a hard drive and all the photos I’ve taken on my tab and those sent by Nissa via messenger.  Just a way of protecting those shots and thoughts that I’ve gathered and written throughout the year.   It’s annoying enough to have a post deleted accidentally but a whole blog is another thing.  One can’t help but worry at times  and look for an alternative tool to copy everything.

WordPress has made available a URL  good for seven days for when I want to migrate my site to a self-hosted blog. But as I have said before in my other post, I want to remain on a free theme  here on WordPress so I won’t have to pay every year for its maintenance.

I am not changing my present theme yet, I feel comfortable with it and I want clear lines  like it is. I’ve used up 73% of my allowed limits. One percent is almost a year of blogging without so many high-res pictures to go with it. I used to post so many photos the first four or  five years but I have not limited them to a minimum and learned to minimize them too.

Come to think of it, the last ten years or so, I haven’t  had  photos developed in  print except for those studio shots of Nate which I have enlarged and framed.  I have several SD cards which contain  all photos I’ve taken with my cameras before.  The advantage of having an internet at your disposal, you can upload photos right after you took them.

 

 

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I hate spam mails

I am sure most of us do.  I get one or two now and then and when I do I also get this message from WordPress:

Akismet has protected your site from 54,615 spam comments already. 
There are  two comments   in your spam queue right now.

Oh yes, that’s the total  numbers of spam mails I got all these years.  Amazing numbers, spammers are busy on the keyboard.  Haha!

Sometimes, I receive them from the same person with  a paragraph of a story that I don’t even understand.  Sometimes it is written in a foreign language I don’t know. Oh, they sell  something too online but I just  ignore everything and put them in my trash folder or the option “delete spam”. Most  spammers would tell you how you could earn from your blog.  Monetize it so they say. Do you believe them? Maybe you could earn a few pesos for it.

When I was just starting this blog, I met a Filipino nurse based in the USA who was also a graduate of the university where I came from. Believe me, he would sweet-talk you that you could earn thousands of dollars from your blog (yes, dollars). He  created a site  for all UST alumni and we were hoodwinked  to join.  The UST administration approved it and even our former teachers and college professors joined too. I even attended one of his seminars in UST  worth P5,000.00, a bit expensive for me of course but I was interested. Nothing came out of it, I don’t want to monetize blogging.   Later on, after about a year I guess, that site demobilized. I learned later that he just formed his master list out of all the UST graduates and students who joined.  My goodness, I unfriended him on FB faster than you could say go.

Was there a time when one or two of your blog posts was published in another site without you knowing? It happened to me once, they copied my entire post and just changed some words. Wonder how I found it? I checked my blog through copyscape.  I called the attention of WordPress  but I didn’t hear from them. And then more followed.   Someone suggested that I spam them back. What I did was to make a post about them with their site as the  title of my  blog. It finally stopped.

A few months ago, I learned how to block a site. There is an option here and I blocked at least two commenters who were not even WordPress bloggers.

I am grateful for Akismet, they are taking care of spam mails.

 

 

 

 

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Blogging.

I live it almost every day and it makes me smile when the content I post is noticed by bloggers from all walks of life. There are so many new bloggers out there, some have just started  and I am glad to meet them through this space.

I believe there are really no set blogging rules to follow. The success of one’s blog would actually depend  on how you express yourself in cyberspace. There are kindred spirits, they enjoy reading your posts probably because they can relate.

One thing I noticed though, there are bloggers who won’t even  like nor comment on your blog except to leave their blog links and invite you to visit theirs. I wonder if they even read your post. I consider those as spam mails and I don’t bother to visit their sites. I am always on a constant search for other blogs that I can follow. Normally, I follow those I like and when I am lucky enough, they follow back.  I have blogger friends who’ve been with me since WordPress introduced the “follow” and “like” buttons.   The “follow”  button was introduced by WordPress  back in September 2011. They enabled the new feature “like” in  August 2010. If you have been blogging  during those years, you would have surely noticed a slight increase in your page views. I discovered other bloggers through likes and comments.

For the past six  days, I got an average of 210 page views a day.  Best views were recorded last September 2015  and September 08, 2015 bested them all with 4,238 views in one day.   At the moment I have a total of 512,504  views with an estimate of  almost 300,000 visitors. Views and visitor   data are different. One could view a blog once or so many times.

I don’t have that  much number of followers. Including my 90 followers at Twitter which I linked to my blog, I only have a total of 2,917.  That is for Dreams and Escapes alone since I maintain five blogs. I believe though that it is not the number of followers that counts but the lives you touch through your blog.

Blogging, anyone?

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