posts tagged with 'self-promotion'

farmy writing

I was going to do a blog post about talking, but I ran out of steam after writing something for my farming site. Since I know nobody looks at it but me (and oh, do I look at it, joy of my heart that it is) I'll link to the piece hear on the off chance that you want to read my thought on volunteer seedlings in the garden.

comment craziness!!

I was going to write a post this evening about why I drove instead of riding my bicycle today, but I got distracted by the awesome comment thread we've got going on a few posts down. Check it out if you haven't already, and add your two cents!

And maybe I'll write about cycling tomorrow, especially if I'm continuing to procrastinate over getting my Christmas presents made. The delay is getting epic!

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our writing elsewhere

Our church has a newish writers' group to which, by virtue of being "bloggers", we are tenuously connected. But tenuous or not, when we heard there was a plan to put together a collection of writing pieces on Advent we jumped at the chance to be part of it—you might have noticed that we enjoy sharing our thoughts over the internet. The first post went up yesterday: "A mixed up animal house", by Leah.

My post is coming up sometime later; I don't know exactly when, so you should subscribe to the RSS over there to be sure not to miss it. Because, you know, there's at least a three percent chance that I won't mention it again when it does come out.

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Thank you to old readers and new ones

At the Patriot's day parade today I ran into an old high school chum who kindly mentioned that he sometimes visit the blog (Hi Derek!) I am always overjoyed when I hear that people are reading. My desire is for everyone I know to follow this blog, and then I won't ever have to talk to people. No, just kidding. I'd talk to MORE people because old friends will be like, "Hey, I'm into that stuff too" and then they'd email me and we'd make a date to hang out. Or something like that in my little lonely fantasy land.

I does give me pause sometimes to think about the things I write about and the people who could be reading them. I believe there's value in being transparent, but I do wince sometimes to think that an ex boyfriend will find out that I'm living in poverty, or that I only ever had sex with my husband twice and I got pregnant both times. (Well, that's an exaggeration.... that I plan to tell my children when they reach puberty.)

I hope everyone follows the blog on an RSS reader, because if you don't that stresses me out that I should be putting up new content every day. And also we put all the content into the RSS, and we don't serve ads there or anywhere, so there's no excuse for you. Download NetNewsWire and stop wasting so much of your time seeing if your favorite blogs posted new content. I'm only saying this for your own good.

Anyway, if you want to start reading this blog but haven't ever before, here's the rundown:

I (Leah) am a stay at home mom of two lovely boys, Harvey who is almost 3 and Zion who is almost 1. Dan works in the public schools. We live at around the poverty line, and sometimes we write about how we have no money. I do a lot of crafting and sometimes I pretend like this is a craft blog and put up photos and talk in lingo that no one understands. Dan is an awesome gardener and sometimes writes about that, as well as about biking at which he also smokes the competition. We have four chickens and a dog but they're not allowed to hang out together.

We are also people of faith and sometimes we write about that. I hope in a way that isn't too off-putting, but I don't try hard enough to not put folks off. We also sometimes talk about politics, and I'm SURE we're off putting when we do that.

If you want a blog that is both beautiful and sexy, you should read my cousin Helen's blog. If you want to read about my hair and cute things my kids say, you're in the right place.

Thank you everybody who reads our blog! You are always welcome to come over and hang out and take home some eggs. Just email me and give me a little warning so I can pretend like I keep a clean house.

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farming on the web

I sowed more seeds today under the lights. There's something very enjoyable about the activity: it's the only part of gardening where I manage any science or method. Variables can be controlled. Once those seedlings graduate from the hot box, though, all that goes out the window. I had to write off the onions, for example, and the corn that Harvey planted isn't looking too good either. Still, I'm sure something will come out alright.

In order to keep track of things a little better and in furtherance of certain grand (if vague) plans, I've created another little corner of the squibix web: squibix farm. Check it out and tell me what you think!

Not the shy type

I have a guest post published today at Not The Religious Type on germophobia, parenting, and the kosher laws. Happily they didn't edit it at all, making me the only guest blogger so far to end my missive with a self-depricating reference to untreated OCD. Pretty sweet, I know. Check it out and leave a heavily worded comment!

new month, new look

You may have noticed that we've changed things up a little here at the squibix family blog; more so even than when we replaced the green look with those cute snowmen a couple months ago. This time it's not only a new look, it's new functionality (that means stuff that does stuff) as well! Read on for some details (unless you only take in our content via RSS reader; in that case, go enjoy your coffee or whatever).

After a couple years menu-less, the menus have returned to the left-hand side. I asked Leah if she wanted the blog to look more spacious and zen, and she replied in the extreme negative—something about wasted space and not having anywhere to focus on the page. I compromised by making the menus fold up, so they don't take up too much attention-space if you don't want to look at them. Since I'm the spiritual head of the household, you'll notice they start out folded.

We also added tags, which were all the rage some three-four years ago. We wanted to make sure they had legs, you know. We've gone back and tagged about a year's worth of posts; the tagging work will continue, if only because we get a kick out of reading our old material.

Finally, there's now an archive, for the historically-minded reader. I particularly recommend the full page of calendars, because the principal reason I ever write in this blog is to fill up the little numbers with links. I also am prouder of that calendar code than anything else I've ever written.

Of course, as with any new software project, there are bound to be issues: what are known colloquially, in the business, as "bugs". Some of them we even know about, but didn't bother to fix quite yet: for example, Leah doesn't really like the tree drawing on the masthead. I promised to make her a better one, but I couldn't deny you the opportunity to read our twitter posts in the sidebar for the time that would take. So, later. Others we might not notice unless you tell us, so please don't hesitate to offer your feedback.

I know, with all that don't I sound like this is a real important blog, like people are reading?! Hi mom, hi Oona! Still, I had fun putting all this new stuff together, so I get to talk about it a little bit. I hope you enjoy!

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hooray!

With this post, we have written something every day this month. It's the first time we managed to fill up a whole month, something that I naturally count with a major achievement on par with, oh, I don't know, sitting through a Star Wars marathon. Something that involves sitting, in any case, and not much actual hard work. That doesn't make me feel any less triumphant, though!

We came close last month, missing just a single day (stupid January 8th... what do you think we were doing instead?!), as well as January of 2007 and February, 2004 (the latter is still our best month by number of posts, but I have no doubt that record will soon be smashed as well).

So hooray! And maybe later this evening Leah will even write something with actual content.

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too much analytics, too little data

Dan says to me, "I was checking our google analytics today and we have one reader from Fiji and one from Thailand!"
"Fiji is Molly. And Thailand is Neil."
"Well, Molly read for a long time. About ten minutes."
"That's nice! I should say something nice about her on the blog." (Ed note: Molly has a winning personality and an uncanny resemblance to Katherine Heigl.)
"It said that Thailand read for zero minutes."
"Zero minutes??? That jerk! After I go and write a whole post about how awesome his blog is? He comes here and doesn't even click on anything???"
"He could have read everything on the front page. We don't know."
"Well I wouldn't want to steal away his precious time from brooding and getting punched in the face."
"Maybe he was surfing from an internet cafe."
"That's true. You gotta prioritize your web surfing time when the clock is running. Then again, I can't imagine how expensive internet cafes are in Thailand if you can get a BJ there for a ten-spot."
"Agreed. He's a jerk."
"All those times I handed in joint lab reports..."
"You should blog about it and then he'll be forced to comment."
"Yes. I'll force his bandage-wrapped hand."

wait til next year

So we were spurned by the Bloggies, if not by notice from one of the finalists. Now that voting is safely over and my opinions won't unfairly sway the competition, I feel that I can comment on the finalist selection (which you may view, at least until the winners are announced, at 2010.bloggies.com). First of all, horizontal scrolling?! Come on, guys! I've done it, but not for a list of things that's like 20 times wider than the viewport. Lame. Oh, the blogs?

As I read through, I was at first startled by how many of the finalists I knew about. Well, not in the "Best Australian/New Zealand Weblog" category, or crap like that, but in the humor and sports blogs. Sports?! Who knew that I read three-fifths of the best sports blogs on the internet?! The answer is, I do not. The contest turned up two blogs about cycling, one about cycling and doing things in the cold (two guesses), one about soccer, and another about swimming. So you know, the big-time American sports. Maybe the set of folks who follow real sports doesn't overlap with the set that nominates blogs for awards.

I have also seen three of the five allegedly "most humorous weblogs". Suffice it to say that, were I voting man, I know three blogs that wouldn't have my vote.

Anyways, once I got over my initial startlement I was reassured to realize I had actually never heard of most of the finalists. Phew! I'm not a total blog-dork. Although maybe I should be paying more attention, to know what Confessions of a Young Married Couple has that we don't. Are we not young enough?! So the campaign for 2011 has officially begun. Whether it's the Bloggies or the Webbies or the Netties or whatever else they're giving out, we need some love. Combining humor, whimsy, and gripping true-life stories, we present an irresistible package for any awards voters. If only we could get anyone other than friends and family to read our stuff...

(We love you guys! Um, how many unique email addresses do each of you have access to?)

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another year

I missed it yesterday, being largely unaware of the day of the month except to read it out mindlessly to students who have forgotten to write it on their papers, but the squibix family blog has completed its sixth year of operation. Yes sir, six years and 1,357 posts later, and we're still going strong. Well, strong-ish. Revenues are not all we could want, and I have been informed that the "Bloggies" have gone to final voting without without a mention of us even in the initial nominating stages, but at least we're filling up the calendar with content of one sort or another. Some of it is even funny.

If you have some time to spare, start here and read all the way through until you get to this post again! You'll experience our wide-eyed wonder at living in California, our stress upon moving back to Massachusetts and realizing that if we're going to get married we're going to have to spend an awful lot of time together, the ups and downs of our varied employment situations, and our joyful anticipation of our first child. Also lots of pictures and videos of said child. All that rolled up together in an always-entertaining package that, if you don't look carefully, makes you think we just wrote whatever came into our head on any given day! If that's not artistry, I don't know what it.

Oh yeah, and thanks for reading and stuff like that.

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now I don't want to sound desperate, but

I promise I won't do it more than once a month, but it's time again to make an impassioned plea for comments. We crave validation, you have to understand. And I don't mean private validation like sending us a very nice email, or telling us in church how much you liked a particular video—public validation. That way not only will we know how awesome you think we are, but everybody else'll know as well. Then they'll, you know, start to feel that it's ok to admire us that much too, and they'll start commenting as well. But somebody's got to break the ice here.

comment upgrade

If April and Sarah can do it, than so can we!

We love getting comments on posts—it's that precious validation that keeps us going, I suppose. And now the squibix family blog, already much easier to comment on than most others, is even more user-friendly! Yes, I have finally put in a checkbox that will let the machine remember your name and website so you don't have to type it in every time. This way you won't have to leave off your website link due to time pressures, or worry about mistyping your name like poor Oonams, our all-time greatest commenter, did recently. I did it for you, Oona!

So go ahead, try it out!

multi-modal communication

<img src="images/harvey_with_zebra.jpg" alt="a picture" />

If you happen to be on Facebook, and are "friends" with me on that site (N.B. if the first qualifier is true, the second had better be as well, if the third is that you are reading these words), you will have already seen this amusing picture. However, not all the great pictures I take will be posted to the blog here; similarly, they won't all appear on Facebook (though the Facebook exporter for iPhoto makes it awful easy to add photos, right Leah?). No, for the complete range of Harvey pictures—which are certainly what you are mostly looking for—you'll have to look in a number of places. To wit, here, my Facebook page, Leah's Facebook page, and, of course, Harvey's website.

To make this last one a little easier, I've whipped up an RSS feed for his cute little page. Now you can subscribe and make sure you don't miss a single photo, without the bother of refreshing the page every half-hour (sadly, our upload rate is slightly lower than that).

Obsessive Harvey-watchers may also have noticed that we suspended our real-time monitoring, due to it taking about three hours a day to keep up with. Too bad; it was awesome having all that data. Why doesn't Trixie-Tracker sell some sort of implantable chip that will automatically tell us when he's wet, nursing, and asleep or awake (Santa Clause might be able to make use of this last bit of functionality) and automatically update the site?! Until that technological marvel is developed, however, we made the decision that our Harvey time would be better spent playing with him. For now, anyways. And taking pictures, of course!

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on the differences between mamas and daddies

When Harvey gets some drool or spit-up on his chin, Leah wipes it off with her own shirt. Me, I use Harvey's shirt.

By the way, check out his new-and-improved website at squibix.net/harvey, now with more than two photos (including some that have never appeared in the blog!). I have now made it rather easier for us to upload photos, so you may expect to see more as the baby keeps growing and being cute!

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the book of faces

It was perhaps inevitable that once joining LinkedIn proved not to be the end of the world, Leah and I would eventually find ourselves on the Facebook. Which must mean it's played out now, unless it has been for some months already. Add us or friend us or whatever it is you kids do these days; chances are that if you know what Facebook is you know better than we do how to indicate the location of our virtual presence on the site, which is not as easy as you may have expected. I may be at this url, but then again, I may not. I don't know what those numbers mean.

the state of the blog

You wouldn't necessarily know it by the post numbers, but we've hit a thousand posts. Plus one, actually: this here is the one thousand and first post here on the squibix family blog. The missing fifteen or whatever posts were deleted, but not because we changed our mind about the content—how could we? we never read it!—but because when Moveable Type was breaking it threw out a bunch of duplicate posts that we had to get rid of once sanity was restored.

Anyways, given the milestone I thought I'd toss out some stats:

  • Total number of posts, to date: 1,000
  • Posts by Leah: 370
  • Posts by Danny: 610
  • Mystery missing posts (by squibix? what?): 20
  • Month with most posts: tied, February '04 and January '07 with 41 each
  • Month with least posts: Um, there were some with none in the summer of 2004
  • Okay, not counting those: December '04 with 1, November '04 with 2, and November '07 with 3
  • Posts about Rascal: 91 that reference him by name above the fold, anyways
  • Posts by Danny at least in part about the weather: probably about two or three hundred
  • Posts that are at least moderately amusing: maybe a few, here and there
  • Other blogs on blogs.evula.net (where we got started) that are still seeing new posts: none! We win!

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link me!

Inspired by Janet and the desire to read someone's profile, Leah and I have joined LinkedIn. Yeah, we're a couple years behind the times on the whole social networking thing. You can't early adopt everything! Needless to say, we have a long way to go when it comes to building our "connection" networks; and even though one call to action in a week is plenty, I feel it is necessary to ask—to abjure!—anyone who's on the LinkedIn to add me as a friend. I mean, as a connection. A serious business connection. Don't bother adding Leah, though; there's no competition between us, so she won't mind if I get more connections than she does.

Hi honey!

My little profile page is at www.linkedin.com/in/danarchibald, if anyone wants to take a look at it.

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1001

Leah claimed post number 1000 yesterday, with all the attendant celebration. Horns blared, bystanders cheered, and confetti and balloons rained down from the ceiling. It was pretty cool! In her historic post, however, she neglected to mention that our illustrious visitors were none other than oonams and yimfay, who also blog at aimless wanderings cubed. That's where you can find their account of their visit to the squibix family home! Although we may be able to cook and embroider, Leah is correct that we are Not Cool; but at least we got to bask a little in some reflected hip urban glory!

bonus day

It's late, but I didn't want this extra day to slip by without tooting my own horn by way of noting the forethought I showed by making the 29th day of February show up on the calendar over there to the left (too bad no one will see it before it flips over to March, unless you're up in the middle of the night refreshing your RSS). To celebrate we went into Boston to see Bela Fleck and Chick Corea at Symphony Hall, which was fun, except that the whole expedition took over five hours. Now we sleep.