Monday, December 2, 2019

Simple season

Christmas is called the silly season, for a reason. But I'd much rather take it easy though. Which is why I prefer simple Christmas decorations in the house. One of my favourite nooks, has an arrangement of plants, wooden ornaments and a super easy light to install. I purchased a set of LED fairy lights, at OMGosh, for just under $7. They're powered by batteries, so I don't have to worry about positioning them near a power socket. And my clear glass, flower vase, was perfect to house them.

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Christmas DIY gifts

Just a quick link to a Youtube video, if you're looking for some last-minute, DIY Christmas gifts. I thought these 4 ideas were really practical, doable and used repurposed items, rather than purchasing new. So for those crafters out there, looking for inspiration, I hope this helps. The first idea can be used for any number of small items, which need to be kept together for storage, or transportation. Anyway, I hope you're all getting ready for Christmas. We should be putting up our tree today!

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Knot a problem

Hanging around

Some of my earliest memories in childhood, was watching my mother make Macrame. I'd see her surrounded by never-ending cord, that would magically get shorter after a while. She made the most beautiful fruit basket holder. It was wide, tall (ceiling to floor) and I could pretend to get tangled in the longs strands. Quite a few times, she told me not to pull on the tail. I could play underneath, if I didn't pull! So I was more than delighted, to try my own hand at Macrame knots, recently.

Thursday, November 21, 2019


A new opportunity

I've had a little experiment going in the kitchen, since winter. Involving an old bonsai planter, I was gifted a few Christmases ago. My niece and nephew gave this wonderful present, but unfortunately, the plant in it, died that summer. I've learned a lot about keeping indoor plants, since, and wanted to rejuvenate the old container again.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

The watering hole


Since all the natural watering holes, in the landscape have dried up, our bird-baths have been working overtime. They're filled twice a day now, to accommodate the visitors. Which is about 18 litres of water, per day. We have the larger bath, for mostly birds and adult kangaroos to drink from. The small one is for Joeys, who have vacated mum's pouch. But not quite large enough, to reach the tall one yet. We've had different configurations over the years.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

What tomorrow brings

Click to enlarge

This is a snapshot from the Queensland Rural Fire Service website. Over the past few days, I've been observing the fires. We're situated at the red dot. Locations where fires are being reported, are increasing in number, and getting closer. While the wind directions at present, aren't cause for concern, tomorrow and Saturday will be a different story. They will intermittently push all the fires, gradually in our direction.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Saltbush city limits

Winter 2017

This post is all about one of my favourite, drought resistant plants: Old man Saltbush. It's somewhat bulletproof in all regards, and only seems to grow bigger, in a drought. However, there are some care tips I've discovered since 2014, which considers their natural limitations. I've had five years to observe, how they've performed in our landscape.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Boxhead buddies

Living inside the square

There's a lot more property posts, to catch-up on. But for now I've been indisposed, making costumes again. Only this time, it was for the Halloween themed party, at the Toowoomba City Library (last Saturday). Peter wore his old "Creeper" costume, I made for book week, so it was great to get further use out of it. When at the library, we came across another character from the Minecraft gaming universe. The Enderman!

Thursday, October 17, 2019


The mulberry waits

I haven't done a property post for a while, because it's looking grim out there. Nothing is growing. It's either dead, dying or hanging on for dear life. We didn't know it at the time, but when first moving to our property in 2007, it was at the end of a drought. The rain steadily picked up, year after year, until the massive Statewide flood in 2011. So it's fair to say, ALL our land management practises, revolved around some sort of wet season. But what about the dry?

Friday, October 11, 2019

Spring kitchen garden

New infrastructure

It's been a while, since I updated the kitchen garden. Much has changed since, October 2018. This small area of raised containers, has produced a lot of growth since the new addition was added. Mostly herbs. But also cherry tomatoes, chillies, silverbeet, and strawberries. Listed in order of productivity. They're just not as prolific as herbs.

Monday, October 7, 2019

A Kings' blessing

Stranger things...

Life is nothing, but strange at times. When I decided to bring some of the outdoors, inside recently, I was specifically talking about plants. Like this new fern arrangemeent, underneath the living room window. A female King parrot, surprised me the other morning, as she was keenly admiring my handiwork. Was she attempting to blend-in with the greenery?

Saturday, October 5, 2019

Free things


David surprised me last week, when he came home from work. The aged care facility he's employed by, had some plants and containers to discard. Or at least, no-one wanted to look after them any more. There were some mature specimens, inside the pots, and even a metal owl companion, found it's way with some succulents.

Thursday, October 3, 2019


A procession of plants

My window sill, at the kitchen sink, is starting to look overcrowded. It's a brightly lit area, I help plants get a headstart here. Some are intended to be permanent residents though, I have yet to introduce to you. Others, I have already shared - such as the pear scions, I'm attempting to root in soil. No doubt, I'll eventually mention some of the other plants, but for now, it's onto re-purposing something, near and dear, to my heart.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Indoors garden

Ivy - see update (below)

Yesterday, was filled with new tasks I've set myself recently. All to do with bringing the outside, inside. Or creating space for indoor plants. It's something I've been researching and wanting to do (successfully) for a while. In the past, I've failed at keeping plants alive. So I haven't rushed into filling my house with plants again. Not until I was confident, I had the crucial information required.

Sunday, September 29, 2019

21st century

Pansies in the kitchen garden

Welcome Spring! You certainly were the driest one we've ever experienced here. Now in the second week of the school holidays, we weren't spared any drama there, either. As we lost the internet for three days. Gasp! Both the modem and cordless telephone died, at the same time. It must have been a surge down the line, for both of them to die. Who knows what caused it?

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Reno round-up


Two years on, from the bathroom renovation - was it worth the time, effort and money, spent? Which wasn't a lot of money, but still. Do you wonder, if I fell out of love with that green feature wall yet? Or did finding the right plant, that survived, seem more like a burden, than it was worth? Did I really achieve the sense of the outdoors, coming inside?  Or should I have just left the whole thing alone?

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Aussie Battlers

Facing West-South-West - the current wind direction

I don't know if you can see it, but there's a smoke haze, on the horizon. My thoughts are with those in Stanthorpe (Granite Belt) and surrounding areas. After facing their local water supply, drying up recently, they are now being hammered by bushfires. I spent my last few years of High School, in Stanthorpe. My mother also grew up in the area.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Plant saga - success!

Finished, winter 2017

When I did a minor bathroom renovation, 2 years ago, my intention was to bring some of the outdoors - inside. Because cleaning a bathroom, can be mundane work! I love gardens though, and everything green in them. So what better, than to introduce a green feature-wall to the bathroom? Once complete, the next challenge was to introduce a living element to the bathroom. Anything, has to be better than mould, right?

Monday, September 2, 2019

Zone Zero

A new friend

Coming out the winter hibernation period, I've had a wave of ideas to sort through. Because normally this time of year, is our dry Spring. We occasionally get a wet one, but more likely, they're dry. Actually, since 2017 rainy season, it's been dry all round. Every season! Which presents the dilemma, of what to grow? Especially, when there isn't much water to spare.

Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Cubes & costumes

Going green?

In case you didn't know, it's book week in schools and public libraries, all over Australia. It's an opportunity to celebrate all things, books! At Peter's school it was dress-up day, today. Where you could choose to be a favourite character from a book, or just what inspires you.

Monday, August 12, 2019

No-man's Land

What's caught your eye, Mr Kookaburra?

No-man's Land. An enigma, really. Kind of like how we're approaching the middle of August. How did that happen? Thank goodness, I've socked away some early Christmas gifts, got onto some clothes mending, and food fermenting. All good stuff! But I've also been avoiding this space too. More than real-life, demanding my energy. I've had moments I wanted to blog, but simply couldn't. I think I know why.

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Simply July

 A bouquet

July comes after the hump of mid year. That means the shortest days of winter are behind us in Australia. So there's much to look forward to, in the coming Spring. July is when I usually receive flowers from my husband, because it's my birthday. Forty-five, this year. The mid year, of my mid life. It sounds so formal, when put like that. For me, it's really an opportunity to reflect on the fact, I've HAD this long.

See, I almost drowned when I was younger - somewhere between seven and nine.

Monday, July 22, 2019

Game changer

Momentary pause - Willy-Wagtail

I promised to share some news, David and I have been sitting on, for some time. It's part of the reason, I chose to shut down my property website, too. A series of events took place, which were innocuous at the time - but soon gathered momentum. Until they demanded nothing short of some life changing decisions.

Monday, July 15, 2019

Part 2 - Resilient Surprises

A fruitful exercise

So the drought broke in late Spring. However, there wasn't enough rainfall, over a 12 month period, to stop the death of several of our fruit trees. For the most part, they have to cope on natural rainfall. Thankfully, the Lazarus Mulberry, came back from the dead, as I described earlier. Yet there were a couple of pair trees, which not only managed to survive the drought - they bore fruit for the first time in a decade, since planted.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Resilient Surprises

Early Autum (March 27) the rain came too late

RIP mulberry tree, down in the main gully. I thought of all the places you would thrive, it's where all the water flowed. You grew faithfully, like a weed, for many years. But we were about to learn something new in this landscape together. When it doesn't rain for months on end, then summer comes and we miss our usual rainfall too - well, the gully doesn't capture water. At all.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Fluff 'n Stuff

The three clucker'teers!

There's nothing like motivating the building schedule, than having baby chicks, waiting in the wings. Sorry, an obvious pun. But our chicken coop should be ready for these three, to eventually migrate into. Even if renovations have just barely begun.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Creative destruction

Behind the chicken coop - can you see the swale?

If you remember this image, from the "Do nothing" post, I said we were in the midst of making some creative destruction, in this area too. Part of the reason it's overgrown at all, is due to poorly designed access. It was started many moons ago, when we first dug the swale, but never finished properly.

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Do nothing

Nature is knocking at the door

Born out of a lack of time, too much land and aspects of weather, I don't always get outside when I need to. Some weeks, months or even years later, I return to particular  locations, and find an overgrown jungle. In the past, this frustrated me. Only because of the thought of having to pull it all out, and starting again.

Friday, July 5, 2019

Update on Compost

New structure, next to the bridge

I first introduced our new compost gully, on the other website, over a month ago. You would have seen it posted on this blog, just yesterday though. I wanted to update, how we're still tweaking the design using more sapling trunks. David installed a teepee structure, to help support the pumpkin vine. It's still growing quite well, during winter. I think the warmth from the compost breaking down, helps.

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Compost gully

June 2008 - first bin

When we started composting on our land, we thought a large standing compost bin, was the way to go. The kind with multiple bays. We built three, out of recycled pallets. It was appealing, because we had the opportunity to make a large batch of compost, in one go. Unfortunately, we weren't generating enough of all the different ingredients to make a substantial batch.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Aerial view

2007 - initial front terraces, as the house was under construction

We've been living on our 5 acres of bushland, for twelve years now. Easter, was the anniversary of moving in. Our leap into large-scale gardening, happened to coincide with the cultural celebration, for new life and new beginnings. Easter. Since this cultural celebration, just passed - it was fitting to share an areal view, of what all that Natural Sequence Farming, Permaculture and Natural Succession Gardening, has achieved during that time.

Tuesday, July 2, 2019


Hi folks. I've not been blogging, due to some big decisions, which have unexpectedly emerged in our lives. One has to do with my new website. After several months waiting on Weebly, to fix a bug in my comments box, I've still had no success. No follow-up contact, either. Now they aren't returning my inquiry emails. So I've decided to stop blogging about our property, there.

I could have changed hosting companies, like I was intending to, later. However, another big decision was going to affect that too.

~ Late May ~
time for fledgling kookaburras, to leave the nest

For now though, please bear with me, as I gradually migrate the four property related posts, back here. Where I also intend to finish the second part, of the last post - about Resilient surprises. That was left hanging for a while.

I'll try to post one-a-day, so I can be all caught up, for the next bit of news to share.

It's been crazy around here lately, with more crazy to come. So if I don't sound like my normal self, it's because I'm not really dealing with normal, at the moment, lol.

I hope you're all doing well.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

Leaking money

I'm back from La-la land, where people go to be sick. Over a month, taking care of kids and then nursing myself back to health, I'm finally regaining my senses enough to tackle some challenges, head-on. Like how NOT to spend money, where I don't have to.

In the kitchen, I've had an ongoing problem for over 3 months now. Which I've been trying to find an economical solution to...

Something broke!

How much would you expect to pay, to fix a leaking dishwasher drainage hose? In our case, it was going to cost around $300. Gasp, right? It comes down to one company in the region, who only fixes Smeg dishwashers. They have a business to run and need to be profitable, but I won't spend $300 to fix a hose, without exploring alternatives first

Having already spent $120 for them to investigate, and determine the problem, it was educational watching how to dismantle parts of the machine. However, instead of paying them another $180 to finish the job, I was going to find the part myself, and see if I could install it. After all, how hard could it be to replace a piece of plastic?

A requested, ginger-kisses cake

In the interim though, there were two birthday parties to organise, and a bunch of other important stuff, I won't mention to save time. Needless to say, 3 months can pass very quickly. But in all honesty, I was really dragging my tail (intentionally) when I had gaps of spare time available.

In those 3 months, I may have located the part online, organised shipping, watched countless instructional videos, and nursed us all back to some semblance of cognitive health - but I still wouldn't tackle the dishwasher. I was stalling. Everything was ready. Why did I hesitate?

Some business to attend to

FEAR! The machine may have only been 5 months out of warranty, and just over 2 years old, but I still had a dishwasher valued near $2,000. I'll tell you why we even considered paying that much in a different post. Needless to say, I felt like a rookie in the big leagues now, and understandably anxious to make the first move!

The instructional videos I was able to watch, were only for generic brands. So not exactly confidence boosting. What I gleaned from the technician we paid to determine the problem, only showed me how to separate plastic joints, without breaking them. That gave a little more confidence, but I still had no idea what I was going to be facing, underneath. Especially since the part I was replacing, looked slightly different to the ones in the video.

Unfortunately, I couldn't avoid the stainless steel elephant in the room, any longer. Seriously. Christmas was coming! So I dragged out the tools and parts (above) which the instructional video, recommended, and put my head down to work.

The test run

Ironically, the multi-grip and hose clamps, turned out to be of no use, at all. Just a simple screwdriver was needed. Plus a lot of patience. As what I was planning for taking the machine apart, turned into dismantling, underneath the sink too. Thankfully, not the plumbing. Just everything I stored around it, blocking access to the hose clamp.

I'll spare you the details of my rookie, learning curve - but it was laughably easy to replace, in the end. Every step was less complicated, than the instructional video outlined. So I guess, Smeg still designs its machines for simplicity. It was tempting afterwards, to reprimand myself for letting fear control the schedule, almost every step of the way. But I realised there was some logic to it, as well...

Sweet victory

Those three months, gave time to watch a lot of instructional videos, get the best price for parts online, and accomplish a bunch of other stuff in my life, that really needed doing too. In the end, it forced me to be patient. And by association, I gained more confidence. What looked like "fear" calling the shots, was really building momentum into providing the solution. Rookies, just need more time to practice the moves.

Now my Smeg is back in it's little nook. Leak free. Saving just over $150, in those 3 months. Should the part ever fail again, I can confidently replace it myself. So there's potential to save even more money, in the future. It makes sense to spend $300 to replace a part, if you have mobility issues, or a bunch of kids to wrangle. Being realistic, is part of the problem solving process. But if it's doable, look for ways to empower your skill-set and save yourself some money.

Safety first though. Always unplug an electronic device, if you're going to work on it. Especially if it's in contact with water. And bring lots of towels!! Have you had to push yourself past a discomfort zone, recently (or ongoing) as the case may be? Do you still feel like a bit of a rookie?

Sunday, May 26, 2019

Do nothing

It's almost winter projects time, and I'm doing nothing, Well, for good reason. I promise. If you want to read more about why, check out the new blog post on my property website.

Does nature knock at your door, too?

I expect we're going to be busy this autumn/winter, catching up on some overdue projects. Summer. Heat. Drought. Need I say more, as to why we're behind? Fingers crossed, the budget will cooperate, along with our expectations. I'd really like to get a few things achieved on our list, for my birthday (come July).

But you know how it goes - expect the unexpected, lol.

Are you planning anything special, this winter? Or summer, for the northern hemisphere?

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

All things compost

Over at the Gully Grove website, I've written about all our composting attempts to date. It was interesting for me to revisit where it all began, to where we ended up! If you want to read the new update, visit Compost Gully.

Just a quick update, on the comment box on my website too - Weebly has determined it's a bug, and is endeavouring to fix the "notify of reply" check-box. You can still comment, with no problems. But the tick won't appear, if you click the option to be notified of follow-up comments.

Passionfruit slice

My kitchen has been getting a workout recently. The things I've had to bake in the last week, are a birthday cake, and some bake wares for my son's school. The latter was to raise funds on voting day (last Saturday) as they ran a baking stall, and sausage sizzle at the school - where people vote.

I made caramel popcorn. Yum! But do you think I remembered to take a photo? Good news is, the stall was a resounding success. So all those kitchens around the community, baked up a storm!

But this post is about, Passionfruit slice. I have a gluten free version (which I personally think tastes better) but will share the regular flour recipe, in the "variations", down the very bottom.

These two ingredients are staples in my pantry ~
but you can use fresh passionfruit, if it's in season for you


Preheat oven 170 C (fan-forced) or 180 standard oven
Grease and line a slice pan

 Ingredients pressed in pan, ready to bake


Combine 1/2 cup plain, Gluten free flour *
                1/4 cup almond meal *
                1/4 cup buckwheat flour *
                1 cup desiccated coconut
                1/2 cup white sugar
                1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate soda
                125g melted butter
                1 tea vanilla

  • Mix together in bowl, until well combined - then press into slice pan.
  • Bake 15 minutes, or just golden brown. Don't over bake. Cool slightly.

A little overdone - aim for "just" gold brown

Reduce oven temperature to 120 C (fan-forced) 130 standard oven


Combine 1x 395g can of condensed milk
                1x 170g can of passionfruit pulp *
                juice of one lemon

  • Mix together in bowl, until well combined - then pour and spread over base.
  • Bake 10 minutes, or until set. 
  • Cool, then slice into individual portions. Store in fridge, in a sealed container.

Glossy after baking


For all those questions you may want to ask, about ingredient substitutions

  • Substitute the 1/2 cup Gluten free flour, for regular flour, OR,
  • Substitute the first 3 dry ingredients (base) with 1 cup regular flour, OR,
  • Substitute the first 3 dry ingredients (base) with 1 cup Gluten Free flour
  • Substitute canned passionfruit pulp with 2x fresh passionfruit (just the pulp)
  • Add zest, as well as juice of the lemon, if you like tart. Otherwise just the juice 
  • A slightly larger can of condensed milk (up to 410g) is fine


While I personally love tart flavours, and will enthusiastically add both the zest and juice, to most recipes - it tends to overpower the flavour of passionfruit, in this one. So it's one of those extremely rare recipes, I will opt for the zest OR the juice. The latter, is more palatable for children.  

Once finished, the base should be chewy, and the topping like a soft gelatin, which will keep it's form, once cut.

If you're wondering why I add the buckwheat flour and almond meal - it adds depth of flavour (and a few more nutrients) to what is otherwise, just white flour and coconut for the base. This is unashamedly, an indulgent, sweet treat. But any way I can slip in a few more nutrients, and improve the flavour, I will.

After sitting down and writing about this slice, I think I can hear it calling from from fridge! Most likely, it's just my stomach talking, lol. I missed lunch.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Before we were...

I have promised a Passionfruit-slice recipe, which was meant to be the very next post. However, I couldn't let Mother's day pass, without a tribute, first. This special day is a happy time for some, and a sad one, for others. Mothers who have passed away, and some who struggle, to live up to the title - well, life is not always fair like that. Yet we hold "mother" as the gracious role it was meant to be.

My mum & I, on my wedding day ~ 2013
6 months pregnant with my first child

Like all mums (myself included) we are not perfect. Yet they endeavour to be there, for all the important things. Like being ready with a band-aid, when kids fall from their bikes. A hug when they feel uncertain. Home-made meals, only mum can make. They teach us it's okay to fail, and more importantly, how to get back up again. Basically, they try to be there, to help shape us into decent human-beings.

My mum is getting older. I am getting older too. So are my kids. It's all happening the way it should. Yet, how easy is it, to get caught in the busyness of life, and forget how important the ones who went before us, really are? Does it matter what we're doing, if we forget them? For me at least, life starts to lose more of it's meaning, when glossing over the ones who came before us. I know all too well, life can be stressful and take my eyes away. And the needs of my own kids, don't take care of themselves either.

So how do you balance it all together?

My youngest, makes a heart ~ he will turn six, soon

As my mother taught me - each day is a brand new one, and (if you're lucky) you get to start all over again. So start each day, like it's a new opportunity to do better. Hindsight only comes, if we give ourselves the benefit of patience, grace and humility, to change. This applies, whether we are mothers or not. I wasn't a mother, when she taught me this. But oh, how I've needed that wisdom, when I threaten to come undone as one. Or maybe, even just as a human being.

Patience, grace and humility have more value, than any kind of busyness which can occupy us. Because it purchases the coveted ticket, of gaining wisdom. Something, I might add, I'm still attempting to do! Because life (at this point in time) is extremely busy. But I'm fortunate to have my family, still with me. To remind me, what it's all for.

At some point, the baton will pass to my own children. And I hope through all their busyness (that comes with life) they will see the seed of wisdom, my own mother planted in me. So they too, may blossom with this understanding. For it's an imperfect world, we live - and each day, is a brand new one.

Friday, May 10, 2019


For all those who still keep me in their blog lists - thank you! I will leave a notification here, every time I do a blog post (see the latest) on my new property website. 

I will still be blogging here, just not in as much detail, about the property. It's more to do with my life, family, cooking and other stuff. Although I'm sure the property will still be mentioned here, from time to time. Just not in as much detail.

I have not forgotten that Passionfruit slice recipe, Meg *wink*. I intend to share that (here) next.

Tuesday, May 7, 2019

Technical difficulties

Photo by burak kostak from Pexels

Well it cannot be a true unveiling, unless something goes wrong. Like going live, with my new website today, lol. I realise the Disqus comment box is becoming an issue, so I've reverted to the Weebly default comment box, - in hopes Weebly will help me fix it again. Doing what I can behind the scenes, but I'm waiting for their feedback. Sorry for any confusion this may have caused.

You can actually make a comment successfully, using the default. But the checkbox which says, "Notify me of new comments..." doesn't apply a tick, when clicked. Even though the service will be engaged, if you click it once. It's terribly confusing.

I'm just going to be good humoured about it all, and chalk it up to a learning experience. So folks, you're free to still visit my site - it's live. You can even comment via the default comment box, without any unnecessary hoops to jump through to sign in. Just a name, email and optional website address. But you may get confused when it comes to checking the "Notify me of new comments" box.

I'll post updates, as they come. Hoping the default can be fixed. But for now, thanks for your patience folks.

Lift off

Image by IO-Images from Pixabay

Guess what folks? I was able to string enough time together, over the long weekend, to finally complete my website. YAY! If you just want the fun of exploring the new website, all on your own, visit now. It's a fairly basic website (nothing too fancy) but I enjoyed putting together all the little details, which say - this is what we're all about.

If you want a bit more information, namely about the comment box, here's the brief to help navigate.

**At present, I've switched to the Weebly default comment box again. To see if Weebly can help me fix the issue. So if you don't see the "Disqus" comment box (outlined below) that's why. Sorry for any confusion this is causing. I realise Disqus may be limiting your ability to contribute, so please disregard all of the below - for now.**

I was going to use the Weebly default, comment box, but there was an issue getting the notification of replies, to work. Which is an important feature. Opting for the third-party, Disqus comment box, not only fixed that problem, but has several more advantages:

  • Sign-in with existing Google, Facebook, Twitter or Disqus, social media accounts
  • Avatar image, distinguishes your comment
  • Pre-filled data, avoids unnecessary typing, every time you comment
  • Stores all your comments, in one place - from any website, using Disqus
  • Edit or Delete your comments
  • Easily add, images, gifs, links or video to comments
  • Rich text options (like bold, italics, underline and strikethrough)
  • Receive notifications of comments and replies, via the registered email
  • Immediate publishing of comments

Don't despair, if you only wish to comment as a guest - that option is also provided. Just click inside the comment box, and tick the box, which says, "I'd rather post as a guest". See this article, for a more detailed explanation. If you opt for this, please write your name and/or your blog name (ie: Chris, or Chris@GullyGrove) so I'll recognise you. It's not necessary, but I wouldn't want to miss a regular commenter, from this blog.

The 3 main disadvantages of the guest post (must there always be a downside?) are:

  • No email notifications of subsequent replies
  • Cannot edit or delete, once posted
  • Requires moderating, before publishing (sorry about this one, but it's out of my control)

If you have any questions or concerns about the comment box, let me know. While I have disabled the captcha verification process, I'm not sure if it still requires a checkbox (as a guest) to verify you're human. As opposed to a spam bot, lol. I know that process is annoying, but I suppose it prevents spamming.

UPDATE: Due to feedback on the possibility of information being collected, using Disqus, I'm including some links to the Opt-out feature, for tracking - as well as, how to make your Activity Private. Which are added layers of protection, while using Disqus.

Saturday, May 4, 2019

The blog boggler

What title could adequately describe, a conundrum, of the many different ways to set-up a blog? Nothing short of a tongue-twister, would do. Because that's what it feels like, trying to sift through all the options, and find ONE that's right for you. Luckily, I just finished torturing myself with the learning process - so I can shed a bit of light on what's involved, for others.

Basically, it's a choice between a company that specialises in making blogging as EASY, and user friendly as possible - for both the author, and the audience. Like Blogger and Wordpress. They have free blogs, with ready-made templates for you to move straight in to.

The second option, is to set up a blog, through a website.

The latter, it's a little more complicated, than just blogging. It requires creating a whole new website, for your blog to nestle into. This includes designing different pages from scratch (Home, About, etc) your website logo, and branding. This is all before getting to the blogging part! In some website builders, you construct each blog post from scratch too. Every. Single. Time. Luckily, I enjoy doing all that stuff as well.

With your own website, there is the possibility of running into technical problems. Which I've encountered recently, with Weebly. One of the elements weren't working, in the comment box. After many volleys between myself and the support team, I decided to nix the default comment box, Weebly supplied - and go with a third party, one.

Another third party, getting involved with my comment box!! Recollections of Google+. Thankfully Disqus has been operating for a long time, and many of the websites I follow, like Geoff Lawton's, also uses this embedded comment box. It provides the option to change web hosting companies, in future too, without losing my comments. As Disqus can be migrated over.

Bear in mind however, the price for your own website freedom, is to take full responsibility for running it. From conception, content creation and maintaining all the bits, which plug into it. That's the huge difference, and why I would encourage others to stay with their user-friendly blogging platforms - unless, you have a good reason to have your own website. Because it is a lot of responsibility, just to blog!

Thankfully for me, this new website happens to coincide with a few items, I've been wanting to cross off my bucket-list. So it's something I want to achieve. These new responsibilities, are a learning opportunity, and valuable skill-set to add to my repertoire. If I didn't have that drive and purpose though, I may not enjoy what can sometimes feel like a torturous learning curve.

Please let me know, why you would consider setting up your own website? Even if you're not in a position to follow through. Because it doesn't hurt to imagine what's possible.