Hello, is there anybody there….

Books are my favourite things, family and pets aside of course I read lots of books and Ive wanted to do some reviews on the blog for ages.
Ive found writing reviews quite difficult, I’m not exactly sure why but aside from a few early on in the blog I mostly wrote them then hit delete.
Well, because I love books so much and I love talking about books I’m giving it another go, the trouble is, although I can see people are reading my reviews (thank you, if you are reading) nobody is commenting.
Now, this is not a post begging for views or comments (I feel I must point out the books I review are bought by myself, or given by friends, im doing it purely because Books are the best thing ever )

I have no idea if I’m writing drivel, if I’m getting it right, if I’m writing what people want to know from a review, so id like to ask you a favour please, if you do happen to read any of my review posts drop me a few words in the comments box, (help a fairy get her wings) and let me know what I’m getting right or wrong.

Thank you in advance.
G x

The one where i didnt tweet or blog and nothing bad happened

So a few days ago I took a twitter break, also a blog break.
As someone who tweets tweeted quite often and blogged every day I wasn’t sure Id actually manage to stay away but after a few hours I wasn’t even bothered .
My tweeting and blogging has been too negative lately and I dont like to be the negative one, although twitter is great for a vent you can actually do it too much. Ive taken on board the mantra that if you have nothing good to say, say nothing at all (most of the time)
Ive relaxed, I’ve enjoyed a book, Ive discovered that not tweeting in bed goes a long way to curing insomnia! Also as much as I love my followers it was nice to step away from their lives a bit, sometimes you just need to put your own house in order before you worry about other peoples lives. For your own good.
Ive also learnt that I don’t need my phone at the dinner table, and I don’t need my phone in my hand if the kids are talking to me, I need to be fully present when the kids need me too, that means less tweeting.
I didn’t check my timeline at all, I didn’t blog either and nothing happened my twitter followers were all still there as was my blog.
Im ready to start tweeting again, just not quite so much and I’m ready to blog again, although only when I feel like it, not because I feel I should, i think sometimes when you blog almost every day you fall into a trap of feeling you must churn something out but if your post feels forced when its written, it feels forced when its read .

I 💜twitter and I 💜blogging but I will be doing less and taking breaks, life is short, one mustn’t tweet and blog so much about life that one has not enough time to live it.

its nice to be back

The week that was…

Is it just me or are the weeks flying by? I am looking forward to the kids breaking up for summer but before we know it the C word will be creeping up on us.
Last week was a busy one, I started the week absolutely knackered tired from my weekend at brit mums, I enjoyed myself but I did A LOT of walking so my knee has been making me pay for it.
I wrote about my first brit mums live experience here and I got a much better response than I expected.
On Wednesday I had a meeting at Ollies new school, I hate meetings but I called on my new found confidence from brit mums live and the meeting went fantastically well, I wrote about it here.
I made the decision to bin my linkys because they just weren’t working, I must admit I’m a little gutted because I thought they were good ideas but I am enjoying the linkys I already take part in , this is a list of the linkys I love to join in with.
My favourite linky post this week was this one .

After deciding to end my linkys I published my weekly Fit Friday postand due to popular demand I’ve decided to make that into a linky from this coming friday, I’m looking forward to see the posts that are linked up. Fridays are about to get good 😊.
I also hit 1,000 twitter followers this week, so obviously know I’m very important and I tweet in a tiara 😜

My favourite photo of the week was this one taken in the cemetery after Ollie and I had a lovely lunchtime walk .

This week is looking like its going to be a busy one, how was last week for you? What have you got planned for this week?

My first experience of brit mums live.

my first experience of brit mums live, why I enjoyed it and how it opened my eyes to the blogging community.

In case you hadn’t noticed (if you hadn’t, have you been living under a rock?) Brit mums live happened this weekend. And I went. So what did I learn?

First of all I learnt that I can walk into a venue full of 700 people I don’t know , who I’m supposed to socialise with and not hyperventilate/ freak out/ die. This was a surprise to me.

I learnt that Its impossible to find and speak to everyone you really want to find. Its just not going to happen. (Perhaps too many people?) Some people in tweets and blog posts spoke of being blanked, ignored, I would imagine that in most cases it was a matter of it just being too hard to find and recognise everyone, there were 700 people, chill!

Now,I’ve written a few posts that may seem like I’m a bit bitter towards bloggers, thats just not the case, I am a blogger, I read blogs and some of my favourite tweeters are bloggers, but while I thoroughly enjoyed brit mums (as a social event) I also took a few negatives away from the experience . And some of my negative thoughts about blogging were confirmed .
For me brit mums live was a social occasion, I don’t get out ever much and I had something to prove to myself, that I can go out and socialise , I was looking forward to meeting some of my favourite tweeters, most of whom I did get to meet. Im a pretty good judge of character and those who I imagined would be lovely people really where, those I had imagined to be a little snooty and stand offish also were. I noticed quite a few times people inching towards me, looking at my name badge and then inching away again, am I not high profile enough to say hello to? Is chatting to me not going to get you anywhere? Thats the feeling I got. I’m a people watcher and I saw alot of chasing after the “big tweeters” the “big bloggers” fawning over them, almost like “please let me into your circle”, many people moved in cliques, leaving the smaller tweeters and bloggers on the sidelines. There is absolutely a blogging heirarchy and its clear that in the blogging community theres alot of

its not what you write, or what you know, its who you know

and to get anywhere near the hierarchy there will be quite some brown nosing involved. I couldn’t give a rats arse about where I stand, I’m a small fish in a big pond and thats ok because I just don’t have the time, the dedication or the inclination to make my blog a big thing, but there are clearly those who are that way motivated and it wasn’t pretty to watch.

Another thing that I learnt from walking around the brand area and also from sessions I went to was that I firmly don’t want to move my blog into reviewing, sponsorship, (although books are something I will always review) because I can’t be bothered with the level of brand shmoozing involved, and also again, Time, I just don’t have that kind of time. Although one of the obvious benefits of reviewing is free stuff I believe a lot of people do them just for the stats, purely to raise their profile. The brand areas, to me, felt a little like desperation. Some bloggers would review a monkeys fart if it got them some stats. True fact! Also I felt there could have been some better more family based brands there, I wasn’t interested in looking at an Aga (sp) or going to catalanyia (sp), I’m not sure what would have been better (I’m not an event organiser, fortunately) but something else. I didn’t see a lot that would interest or appeal to your average (quite poor) family blogger with children ranging from primary school aged kids to older teenagers.

Disappointingly I didn’t feel I learnt much from the sessions I attended, this could be purely my personal feeling but I would have liked to learn more about storytelling (there was one session which I missed) writing from the heart, what makes a good blog post, not being afraid to be true to your blog and yourself, more about writing to raise awareness, Id like to use my blog more to raise awareness around autism, sen matters etc, and also things I still can’t do like putting something in my sidebar, and what is a plug in?

The sessions were more geared towards selling yourself, raising your profile, stats etc. Some of us genuinely don’t blog for recognition or a high profile. We blog as a hobby a pastime, we do it because we enjoy it, because its pretty cool to have a space on the world wide web that we can make our own, to use in our own way.
There was some talk about comment groups which interested me, but only to cement my feeling that comment groups aren’t for me. I did join one, but only lasted 3 weeks, I find the whole commenting for a comment thing very insincere, I’d rather get one sincere comment on a post than twenty comments saying ” great post” by everyone else in my group.

The awards are a bone of contention for me, I didn’t attend because it would have been hypocritical of me to do so, (I’ve written before about my feelings towards awards) I don’t know who won what or even who was in which category, I’m sure there were some worthy winners , but again I believe the whole nominating and voting process has a lot to do with who you know, you vote for me and I’ll vote for you, that kind of thing. And the whole begging for votes thing doesn’t sit well with me, if a blog is outstanding surely it doesn’t need to beg for votes . I feel the same about rankings, as I’ve mentioned a few times before, for me cutting free from rankings sites was the best thing I ever did for my blog, I don’t know and don’t care whether 5 or 500 people like my blog because now I’m not writing for an audience I’m writing whatever I want to write, whether thats little posts about a cup of tea making me happy ( my happiness is….posts) or bigger posts like this. And if anybody appreciates my blog for what it is then thats all I need .

I will say the event was organised well, the free tea was lovely, I consumed a lot of tea, and the cakes and cookies were amazing, I ate far too much cake!
The venue is lovely and the outdoor lunch area was very pretty. The staff were all very helpful and friendly.

My outstanding moment of the whole event was meeting @ojosworld. She was the first person I “found” when I arrived and we spoke, and hugged a few times. She was exactly how I imagined her to be, which was absolutely delightful.

I am going to go again, but with more realistic expectations and with my eyes opened wider to the community I’m a part of, which while on the whole is an amazing community, does have cliques and a hierarchy just like all other parts of life.

My final point unfortunately is another negative, for me the fact that there was a goody bag at the end was quite exciting, with the exception of the highlighter pen which didn’t work I was happy with all of it ( it was free stuff, whats not to like?) but I saw a lot of tweets complaining, about the wine, I got white, I don’t know if there was a variety but some people hadn’t wanted white. Also some people got scarves from Joules whilst others got bunny key rings. Many of those receiving key rings weren’t impressed,I loved mine because, its a big soft bunny, I like a big keyring (I’m always losing my keys) And mostly because it was free .

I feel that I must add, my views on blogs are different when blogs are actually your window to your business ! Im talking about your average ” mummy” or “parent” blogger.

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via WordPress for Phone http://goo.gl/j6Fzhf

Happiness is a brilliant weekend attending brit mums live and meeting some of my favourite tweeters face to face. I’ve loved it all, I’m heading home exhausted but happy.
I’d highly recommend Brit mums live 2015 for an excellent weekend.

Hi im hoping someone out there knows more than me, its not difficult if I’m honest.
When I open my wordpress app on the I pad obviously this blog is there, im using it right now,

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But when i try to view admin i get the log in page

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And then this blog isn’t there, its been there because I changed the theme and stuff but its not there now, where is it? What do I do?

I can still blog but I cant view admin I was trying to make a badge …and …where is my blog??

Blogology

Im joining in with the theme game again. This week the theme is blogging. I am a blogger, I blog….I’m not a big important blogger, just me blogging when I get a bit of time, i’ll be honest I usually blog in bed, in the dark on the ipad because as you may know it can take a long time for Ollie to settle to sleep. I spend an hour maximum on my blog every day, somedays just a few minutes if I’m just posting a photo, I’ve never written a draft in my life, who actually has time for that?
I like blogs, I like bloggers, and I like to read blogs, Parent blogs mostly, not parenting I don’t want tips, I want to know that other parents are also winging it.
Giveaway blogs and review blogs ( not blogs with a few reviews thrown in) are not my thing….thats just me.
The thing is sometimes I read blogs and I cant help but think ” calm the f@&k down”
Heres the thing… I don’t care or mind why you blog, you may blog because you make a living from it, you may do it because you like all the free stuff you get from reviewing , it may be your way of recording your childs life or like many you may profess to blog because you just like to write and don’t mind whether anyone reads it or not , now, I am one of these people, I do it because its something to do mostly while I wait for Ollie to sleep and because I like having my own space where I can write whatever the heck I like,but I see bloggers that actually beg for reviews, beg to become ambassadors and throw their toys out of the pram when they don’t get what they want. You’re not really blogging for fun or for yourself if you get so irate about it .
Some bloggers seem to review everything and I mean everything they use, from make up to food to cushions to toys, I see people review things that are completely irrelevant to them, sometimes I read them and think jeez put the blog down and take your kid out to the park to play with a stick in a puddle, just don’t review it.
Then there are the linkys , yes I have two linkys, both small things which have a small loyal following and I have a small list of linkys I enjoy taking part in but some bloggers….well, if theres a linky they are there, they are on it like a car bonnet, if a linky opens at midnight they are there waiting watching the time desperate to be the first person linked up, they will write anything just to be able to link up.Calm down, pick a few linkys you like, pick some that fit you, link up at some point before closing time, its not a race….*whispers* i think its a little sad to wait for midnight to desperately BE THE FIRST.
Then the stats and rankings,you know, the ones the nobody cares about, yet will announce when they’ve moved up and have a hissy fit when they have moved down.
If you’re blogging for you, for fun stats and rankings aren’t important, don’t get bogged down in stressing about them.
I was on a ranking site, I removed myself and I’m enjoying my blog more now.
Unless your blog is what makes you a living, calm down, don’t review everything don’t beg for opportunities, desperate is never a good look and don’t see it as a competition, a race. There is enough room out there for all of us.
If you cant go a few hours without checking your stats, drafting posts, writing a review, writing comments on fifty posts just so they all comment back on yours then you’re probably not having fun with your blog.
Step back …..

blogging is a thing , but its not everything .

The Reading Residence