Thursday, 19 November 2009

Time to say goodbye

It has been great fun! I’d like to say a massive heartfelt thanks to everyone who has taken the time to read my postings, comment on them, added my links and sent emails. When I started this blog back on 19th November 2006, I had absolutely no idea that I would enjoy the social aspect of blogging so much. At that time I wasn’t even reading blogs.

Is it really time to say goodbye then? LOL… the new blog revamp for Year 4 tells you definitely not! If I ever get bored of posting/blogging it will be time to call it a day. I feel a sense of honesty when I post… I make it my rule not to post just for the sake of it. At the moment I am just bursting full of ideas for this next blogging year... watch out I'm going to get a bit more techy this year!



Before moving on I’d like to take a moment to say a quick goodbye to my blog style for Year 3 with the keepsake screen grab photo above. For readers like my parents and their neighbours who read printed copies at the end of each month it shows what it has looked like.


Tissues away, now I’d now like to give you all a tour around my new layout....


We’ll start with my new banner. I wanted it to show an instant snapshot of what you’ll find inside my blog when you arrived. Just like looking into the window of a shop. However each photo has been carefully selected too.


The purple allium flower represents the photo that I have cropped for previous banners and the profile image I use for both Blogger and Blotanical. It has a bit of history. Representing a profile, this image also heads a new menu below that will include more background info about my garden and blog.





The name panel with the wisteria bud that will open into a flower represents a few things. Firstly, this is one of the most popular searches that find their way to my blog. Wisterias can take so long to flower and the expectation of them from the gardener is huge. Like me a few years ago, everyone who has one wants to know if the buds on their plant this year will yield its first flowers. This one is for all gardeners who love and care for plants. This panel also represents a new beginning.

This name panel also caused some deliberation regarding my blog’s name. When I chose shirls gardenwatch I planned for it to be slightly quirky. I didn’t pick it, as often thought, as a copy of BBC Spring or Autumnwatch.

For visual reasons alone I deliberately chose to have no punctuation or capital letters. I like the short, then long word which probably sounds crazy to many. However, pre children I was a graphic designer and the layout of letters on a page is something that I instinctively want to rearrange and control. LOL… it causes me no end of trouble when I try to alter this template and in many cases blogger wins!


The hedgehog image in my banner represents all the wildlife that wanders around our gardens that we don’t know about. This secretive favourite is also one that sends many searches to my blog for information about everything from what it eats to the droppings that it leaves behind!






The partial albino blackbird represents the more unusual and occasional visitors that arrive in our gardens. It represents the searches I, and others, have through books and the internet to ID a new species of bird arriving in the garden. The apple it is feeding from also represents all the different foods birds and wildlife will eat in our gardens and the fun I have had experimenting with them.



Finally to the dotting parents! This represents the privilege it has been to share precious wildlife moments in this blog like blue tits building a nest, laying eggs and feeding their young. Sadly we have yet to see a successful brood fledge through our nestbox that has a camera in it. I am very fortunate to have a selection of cameras that I can use to watch and record what visits my garden. It would be a sin not to share.



Banner introduction over… let’s now take a brief look at a couple of drop down menus. Before I show the newest one let me share you one that I have thoroughly enjoyed using. Yep… I’ll be honest in saying that many of the links are to websites that I enjoy looking at as well as ones that I think will be of interest to any visitors popping by.

You might guess which one of the menus is my favourite. Yep… the NEST & NATURE CAMS! I particularly enjoy sitting in the evening when it’s late and dark outside being able to see what’s going on at a feeder cam at SWT Loch of the Lowes. I have been lucky enough to see pine martens and deer! I find this opportunity to watch wildlife brilliant and absolutely fascinating.

However, this feeding cam is relatively local. It is a bit more mind blowing that I can select a link from this menu to a feeder cam in a rainforest in Ecuador where I am able to watch humming birds at a feeding station… live!! Is that not something?


Last but by no means least, I’d like to introduce my newest menu… the MY GARDEN & BLOG one. This menu has been set up with links to past postings based in my garden and will be updated with future ones. In time I will add further categories too. My plan behind this one is for it to be more info/personal based.




Oops… I forgot to add this. Just one last thing about reading my blog…

The main post column width has always been something I have wanted to widen as I have felt the balance of the page was wrong for my eye. With that balance in mind I have also increased the text size for my posting a little too so it is noticeable larger than the text in my right sidebar. Now, I'd say the two columns don’t compete for attention when you read through them. I do feel the slightly larger text on my postings also makes it an easier read on the eye although not just because it is bigger. I see it more open now with more background colour coming through therefore a cleaner read. I hope it you find that too.


So that’s it… tour over. All that’s left to say now is that if you have joined me today I’d like to say a huge thank-you and invite you to share in my 3rd Blogoversary… without you I wouldn’t be considering another year of blogging :-)

Now, let’s blow out the candles… 3, 2, 1…

47 comments:

Nell Jean said...

You're not really leaving, then? It was hard be sure that that was goodbye.

shirl said...

No Nell, definitely not :-). I was saying goodbye to my blog style for year 3. I am looking forward to year 4 :-D

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

I love the new look of your blog. Glad you were just saying goodbye to they blog style. I always enjoy my visits to your blog!

Robin's Nesting Place said...

What a relief! You scared me for a minute! I love the new look and I'm so excited for you! Happy Blog anniversary!

Magic Cochin said...

For a mo' I thought you were hanging up your blogging boots!!! But you were just being a tease...

I knew there must be a designer's mind behind your blog (great attenton to layout and detail).

Here's to another year watching your garden!

Celia

Midmarsh John said...

Wow Shirl. The title made me feel really sad that I might be losing one of my favourite reads. Thank goodness it turned out that it was just the layout you were talking about. Congratulations on reaching year 4 and I look forward to seeing the new design when it goes 'live'.

Midmarsh John said...

Silly me - it has already gone 'live'. Oh dear - another senior moment!

Miranda Bell said...

I got rather a horrible shock when I read the title of your posting and had to read on so obviously relieved that you're not disappearing as have loved reading your blog! The new look is great - will have to check out how to do the drop down menus on blogger as they're great... hope you're having a good week - am off to cut grass today before more rain comes in ! Mx

Karen - An Artist's Garden said...

Love the new look Shirl - although that was a scary moment when the blog post title came up in my google reader.

I am also looking forward to year 4 of shirls gardenwatch
:)
K

Lisa at Greenbow said...

You gave me a bit of a start there with the title of your post. After all I usually read these posts right after I arise in the morning. Not quite awake yet you see. This title shook me awake. Ha. So happy we are celebrating your blogaversary and you new format is dynamite. Love it. Here's to many more years of celebration.

shirl said...

Hi there Lisa, LOL… you wouldn’t have needed coffee this morning then ;-)

Thank-you, I had absolutely no idea when I my OH persuaded me to give it a go that I’d want to keep going… far less enjoying it as a wonderful creative outlet and social world. I have enjoyed our many exchanges over the years :-D

Thank-you for your continued support and comments. Funnily enough I always think of you at lunchtime (here) when I have posted late at night. I look forward to hearing what you think of my postings.

‘Dynamite’… I love that!! I really am absolutely thrilled to see my new layout up too. We have been slowly working on it on my test blog for the last two weeks and I have been so tempted to let some stuff in (I did with my GBBD blooms) but decided it would be best to publish all at the same time.

Thanks for your good wishes, wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Catherine, Thank-you, I am delighted you like it too :-)

Yes, although feeling a bit embarrassed about giving everyone a fright now… I thought I’d have fun with the title and opening para of this posting… oops :-)

As with changes of cars, you always love the one you have until its time to change it… usually anyway. For me, the change of banner and style for the next year of blogging makes it a new beginning… I just love it!

I always welcome your visits and hope you continue to enjoy them. Thanks for popping by today…. Wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Robin, Oops… hands up, I was playing with the entry para and title… sorry for the fright :-o

On the other side, I have been really touched by the response of possibly saying goodbye. I’d like to be around a little while longer yet and getting wonderful responses like this is what keeps me going :-D

I have thoroughly enjoyed e-meeting you and your photos of plants and wildlife are an inspiration. I have also been thrilled to see the degree of support you have had this last year from other bloggers. This blogging community that we are both in is a very rich one and I am honoured to be part of it :-D

I am thrilled that you like my new look too, thank-you for your good wishes today and on so many other occasions. Wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hi again Celia, absolutely delighted to hear you saw the tease… if you can’t have fun today when can you ;-)

Once a designer, always a designer but it can be a curse too… I can take so long fiddling around with spacing etc and could probably do two postings in the time it can take me to do one!

As to detail, I really cannot help myself with that one. It is something that is just inbuilt again. LOL… I’m not saying I get it right, I’m more saying that I look at things with a wider eye than perhaps I need too :-D

Thank-you, here’s to having new things to watch too! Wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hi there John, Ooop… the fright was on me when I read your first comment! Serves me right perhaps ;-)

Suffice to say, I have felt a tad guilty now for choosing a title for a posting that have given frights or made visitors sad. I do apologise, in all honesty I do see this as goodbye to a year (as I said in my mail) that has been a tad difficult in blogging when other things have been going on. I really am looking forward to the beginning of this new blogging year and to the challenges ahead :-D

I am also so very, very touched that so many would be sorry to see me leave the blogging world. I am humbled. Thank-you, for your good wishes. Year four… can you imagine it… I still can’t believe it myself :-D

Thanks-you for your continued support and comments, advice regarding hedgehogs and links to my postings. I have enjoyed our exchanges over birds and wildlife very much. I can see my future techy posts will have something for us to chat about too! Wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hi again Miranda , oops… apologies once again :-)

Thank-you, for saying you would miss visiting my blog. I have been so touched by these comments. As I’ve said above, I was just having fun with the title and opening para leading into a new year and in no way was looking for this response. It is so nice to be part of something where others want you to stay :-D

Delighted to hear you love my new style, I still can’t help smiling when I open up the page :-D I’m delighted to get your positive feedback on my menus too. I’m looking forward to populating the first one over the winter months :-D

Hope you got your grass cut… that’s a job not for my garden today. The rain is fine but the winds are picking up. Wishing you a great weekend :-D

Randy Emmitt said...

Shirl,
Glad your not leaving us, I just found you :) looking forward to the new blogging style and hope it goes smoothly.

shirl said...

Hi there Karen, delighted to hear you love it too :-D

Now, I wondered about google reader… I don’t use it but I thought it would give more text than appears in the blog list previews and you’d get the full picture… oops, sorry again :-)

Thank-you, I’m really looking forward to year 4 too… I keep thinking of things I want to cover. Perhaps I should keep a blog for that... LOL. Oh… and I’ve still got heaps of photos and stories from earlier in the year that can come over the dull winter days :-D

Just where does the time go... oh yes, I do know the answer to that question! Wishing you a great weekend :-D

shirl said...

Hello again Randy, thank-you… so kind of you to say. Fingers crossed re a smooth transition. It is always great to get comments from new visitors… Welcome to my blog :-D

Yours is one of the many blogs I’d like to browse more during year 4. I need a better blog time management plan for year 4 too :-D

Wishing you a great weekend :-D

nancybond said...

Congratulations on another year and on your lovely new template, Shirl! It is always such a pleasure to visit here...I look forward to the coming year's posts!

Mike said...

Hi Shirl, love the new banner and style, I have been updating my blog a lot lately and found some really nice tricks out, for example click on one of my images and you will see.
If you need any assistance with anything (which it looks like you dont) I will be happy to help.
Mike.
Ps, glad your still carrying on.

sharon said...

Happy Blogoversary Shirl - hope there's many more to follow, love the new look!

Layanee said...

You had me scared for a moment! I have been busy but always enjoy your postings when I visit. You are so energetic to change your layout and style. I need some help with that! LOL Glad to hear there will be more hedgehog and bird escapades. Happy Blogiversary!

Daffodil Planter said...

Thanks for the fright, Shirl! I was quite gloomy reading that first paragraph and thinking, "Snowdrop season won't be the same without Shirl...." So happy that you are just redecorating; the new design is sleek and lovely.

Anna said...

You had me concerned for a minute or two Shirl :) I would have greatly missed your postings if you had disappeared. Many congratulations on your blogaversary and here's to many more !
P.S. I had never noticed the missing apostrophe in your blog's name until you pointed it out.

ShySongbird said...

You have had more than a few hearts skipping a beat Shirl but I had a feeling you were teasing us! I do admit to flying (pun intended!) straight over when the headline came up on my sidebar though, now with a little more time I have come back for a proper look.

Well, many congratulations not only on your Blogaversary but also on your new 'look', excellent stuff! I have been considering a black background for a while for my blog and have 'tested' it out but haven't made a definite decision yet. Strangely enough I haven't been happy with the width of my 'post' column either, maybe there is a graphic designer inside me trying to get out...or maybe not ;)

However, your changes are about far more than a new background colour and post size. Everything you have done here is very impressive, your graphic design skills certainly shine through and it is clear that each change has been very thoughtfully considered.

Well done Shirl! But it really doesn't seem like a year since I read it was your 2nd Blogaversary, how time flies...:)

easygardener said...

Congratulations on your Anniversary. I must admit I thought you were giving up when I first saw your title.
The new layout looks very classy!

steelkitten said...

Congratulations on the Big 3!

I only found your blog a little while ago and have thoroughly enjoyed it, particularly the hedgehog posts. Hubby and I have ended up fostering hedgehogs last winter and now this winter after finding tiny juveniles in our garden that needed building up.

I read back in the summer you found a hedgehog out in daylight and thought you might like to know that hedgehogs do come out in daylight if they are nursing mothers!

When the babies are getting bigger the mothers need a rest from nursing so they take themselves off to a second nest for a sleep during the day and to get a bit of peace.

We used to watch one mother come out of her nest and go off, then her little bundles would fall out of the nest and have a play in the sunshine for a bit before heading back in for a nap. She'd return in the late evening to feed them and then they'd all troop out as a family for the night!

jodi (bloomingwriter) said...

Congrats on the new layout, Shirl! I'm glad you're continuing to blog.

shirl said...

> Hi there Nancy, Thank-you very much. I always enjoy your visits.

I've just spotted your snowfall project… a fun idea. I’ll check out your posting for last year now and try to remember to add mine this year. Have a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Mike, sorry I’ve been slow to reply.

Before the weekend, I only had time for a quick look at your new blog style (very nice) and to click on your photos (great trick) and gutted I didn’t read through the whole posting! Congrats on passing your two years of blogging… so sorry I missed this :-D

Many thanks for the offer of help with blog bits…. I may take you up on that one day. You’ve got a very fresh format on your blog. I do like the extra detail you have. Have a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Sharon, Thank-you, for stopping by on the day, I’m looking forward to blogging for a while yet. Delighted to hear you love the new look… I smile every time I open my page! Have a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Layanee, oops… sorry, done it again :-o

Keeping up with every posting in a blog is always tricky when you are busy and follow many, I completely understand. It has been busy here since I posted and this is just me getting back to replying to comments :-)

It was great to see you on the 19th. I am so glad you popped by as I’d like to say that blogging jointly with you on ornamental grasses was one of my fav blogging times… you’re in my highlights :-D

LOL… I don’t know about energetic… blogger isn’t the easiest perhaps to make your own but I couldn’t face changing to another format now with all the changes we have made to my original template. I did consider moving to wordpress at one point as it seems there is more scope for originality there. Don’t know what typepad does I’m afraid… maybe it does too. You just have to be brave and step out there. Although it is hard work at times it is still great fun and I’d always suggest you give it a try… beware…. It can become addictive though ;-)

Thanks, here’s hoping I can provide fresh and original escapades over the next year! Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there DP, oops, I am sorry :-o

How kind of you to say, everyone has been so kind with their comments. LOL… redecorating… I wish… maybe it’s about time to turn my attention to house redecorating ;-)

Thank-you, I am delighted you like my new blog style. As I have said in a number of replies… I do smile when I open my page :-D

Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Anna, once again I do apologise. I was having a bit of fun with words. Although, I do see this is goodbye to year three and hello to year four and a new blog style really does that well :-D

Thanks for saying you’d miss my postings, it has been very humbling to read everyone’s comments :-)

Thanks too for your good wishes too. LOL… the deliberate missing apostrophe perhaps only stood out to me. However, I always felt a twang when other bloggers put it in… not out of disappointment (I really don’t mind if others use it) but knowing it perhaps should be there :-o

Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi again Jan, I guessed you’d know me by now ;-)

Thank-you, I am thrilled you also like my new look! The darker background is a nice change and I did consider black too. At a glance mine maybe looks black but if you look closer you’ll see I have gone for a very deep, deep brown which gives a fresh but warm look at the same time. It took some time to choose so I can understand your dilemma too. It’s nice to have a change and some colours show off photos better too :-D

LOL… yep I’m sure there are many that want to change column widths and there are a good few widgets out there to help too. Perhaps you could look at them. Unfortunately, I can’t use many of them as they would alter my already well tampered with template and I’d lose too much. That’s one downside to altering code yourself :-o

I am delighted that you see my changes are more than just to first impressions and appearance. I hope to develop my blog content much more this coming year. I’ll try and become more creative too and perhaps set out some challenges for myself and my visitors ;-)

Thanks, I really can’t believe a year has past and I’ve been blogging three years! Now… I just need a few more hours in the day… either that or a blog time management plan! Mm… that could be tricky… what do you think ;-)

Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hi there Denise, oops… caught out again. I honestly thought everyone would see through that title… got that well wrong :-o

‘Classy’… wow, thank-you! I just love it as it shows more of a window of what’s here for the gardener and the bird/wildlife visitors when they pass through. I have wanted to make this change for a while now. Delighted you like it!

Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hello there Steelkitten,welcome! Thanks for the Congrats too :-D

It’s great to hear from new visitors. I’m delighted to hear you enjoy your visits especially when you enjoy hedgehog visitors yourself :-D

Thanks for sharing your story about the young Mums… I have to say I have wondered about that myself. It must be brilliant to watch this… lucky you. Thanks for stopping by with a comment on the 19th… I’ll have to browse your blog now :-D

Wishing you a good week :-D

shirl said...

Hello there Jodi ,Thank-you! I have appreciated all your comments during my time blogging especially on posts like this :-D

It has been wonderful to get so many kind comments about keeping on blogging. In all honesty I really wasn’t looking for them. I really did think everyone would see I was playing with the title. Thank-you :-D

Wishing you a good week :-D

The Early Birder said...

Initially a 'gasp' and then joy. Happy Anniversary Shirl. I have only been blogging since Jan '09 and your site has always inspires me to improve. Now that I have a little more time on my hands I may be talking to you more often to get some 'technical' tips. FAB.

VP said...

Happy belated blogaversary Shirl :)

Sorry it's belated but only just managing to catch up with everyone post holidays. I've enjoyed your book reviews and hedgehogs before finding this most important of posts.

I love your blog tweaks - enough to refresh the page without losing sight of your 'brand'. Foe me it wasn't the increased font size in your main body which has made a difference to the clarity but the text's contrast. I'm sure it's going to help colour blind and older folk immensely too.

Hmm you've given me food for thought for what needs to happen chez moi over the winter.

Am I right in thinking you started out as a blogspot blog originally? If that's the case I wouldn't mind some behind the scenes chatting about converting to your own domain (or links to posts if you've posted about it already) as I'm contemplating doing the same. Only if you don't mind doing so of course.

Have a great weekend! :)

G L Wilson said...

One teeny tiny little comment, and I hope you'll forgive me (but having worked as both a typesetter and an editor for many years, it's kind of second nature)... I have to ask: Why don't you apostrosize "Shirl's" which is, after all, possessive?

Mind, I must say I prefer to see missing apostrophes than spurious apostrophes (i.e. used incorrectly on plurals - I so hate those). I'm an advocate of "If in doubt, leave it out."

shirl said...

Hi again GL, I don’t mind you asking at all. LOL… not a teeny reply… sorry :-D

I can completely understand the ‘second nature’ thing. I also understand the role of the typesetter having, in my role as a graphic designer, supplied many a piece of copy on to them and having had a few exchanges along the way ;-)

Regarding the name shirls gardenwatch, as I mention in this posting, it was completely deliberate to have no punctuation and for it to be slightly quirky. I did take some time considering the apostrophe though. In my revamp, I did come back to this question once again… should I put it in? However many of my original reasons for leaving it out still stood.

Perhaps I should give you a bit more background here. Although now I couldn’t see myself not blogging (for a while yet at least) I was very reluctant to step into this world. It really wasn’t somewhere I saw myself in to be honest. I didn’t read blogs and felt pretty strongly at the time that I wasn’t a blogger type… who would be interested in reading what I had to say and why would anyone want to share stuff with the internet?

My blog began very simply as a tool to send bird videos of the Robin and scenes of snowfall in Scotland to my homesick friend whose parents had both suddenly died within 3 months of each other. On saying that it took me two months to have the courage to tell her I was doing this. I was so nervous when I emailed her the link for the first time and wondered what she’d think of me.

Although I was officially blogging, I told not a soul. My husband (who had encouraged me to blog) and my daughters were all sworn to secrecy! I was part embarrassed I was doing this and I didn’t want people I knew to know I was writing it. To this day only a couple of close friends know and regarding family only my parents and siblings. Funnily enough I am happy to tell strangers that I meet at nature reserves etc. Although partly because of the reaction the word ‘blog’ gets over website I still feel uncomfortable mentioning ‘I blog’.

This is where the name choice for my blog was important. I am not a Shirl. Yep, capital letter there. I am in fact a Shirley and have never seen myself as a Shirl. Nobody calls me by that name except my husband in emails and notes. However, my Mum & Dad have called me shirls when I was younger and an elderly journalist in a marketing dept where I worked frequently addressed me as ‘hey shirls’.

I didn’t want my blog name to be too impersonal for the sake of my friend in Aus hence the name shirls quickly became the best choice. As I see emails as a more personal exchange I use Shirley in replies there… except to the advertisers that pester me.

I see shirls gardenwatch as me but not, if you follow. It’s a name but not. I could choose to comment as shirls too but I felt using shirl there would be less confusing for everyone. However, once again it is absolutely deliberate to not have an initial cap. I completely see why many bloggers like yourself choose to display my blog name fully punctuated… it’s your blog list after all. I’m okay with that… although the appearance of initial caps still makes me shiver ;-)

shirl said...

Hi there Frank, sorry I forgot I hadn’t replied to your comment here :-)

Poor GL above has just had a bigger reply than I planned (and he’ll expect I guess) but I wanted it to follow on from his question as this is something I began explaining more fully in my posting… but I thought it would become too long! However this one is better in my comments anyway.

Thank-you so much for your most generous comment! What can I say, from a reluctant blogger I have felt completely part of a wonderful community and am humbled to think that my blog can inspire others. I am an enthusiastic person and love being creative and blogging is a great place to explore both.

Sorry, I have been slow to comment on your extra free time now. I’d like to wish you well for a bright and fun future. Spookily, your email has just come in as I was about to start this. Chat soon :-D

shirl said...

Hi again VP, Thank-you! Hope you had a great holiday :-D

Thank-you, you have just raised something that I guess I’ve always thought was the case but never really voiced it… that shirls gardenwatch is actually quite like a ‘brand’. Interesting timing that your comment came before GL’s too. I was explaining to him why I don’t see my blog as belonging to the person Shirl’s.

I completely agree with you over the text contrast. I did tweak the size up a little as the column width came up purely for readability in line length. All monitors are different and that’s where a uniform colour is tricky. Many may see the background colour as black but I did take time in chosing the right ‘off black’ with a warm brown hue to compliment the creamish text colour so it wasn’t glaring on the eye. I do lots of tiny tweaks and am thrilled when people mention them. I also took away the style I had adopted for the first para being bold as it was too blocky when larger.

You have a great layout with lots going on so at a guess it will take a bit of thinking and planning to change yours… good luck with that.

Yes, you are correct about blogspot which was a change we did very early on. What we did then may not be the same as you would do now. I haven’t posted on this and perhaps I won’t and you’ll understand why when I email you about this. Nothing sinister :-D

You’ve raised another question for me now on this subject. Heading out now but will mail you later tonight or tomorrow. Enjoy your time catching up on your garden too :-D

VP said...

Thanks shirl - I think we're going to have an interesting conversation judging by your reply to me and some of the others.

I think 'brand' is probably something we don't think about when we first start to blog (especially when we first dip that tentative toe like you and I have), but I think it becomes increasingly important as you become more established on the web. I remember the first time I did a total revamp and a couple of people commented it took them a while to realise it was still me rather than a completely new blog. That really got me thinking.

And I do find it really irritating when people have a revamp pretty much every week, probably for similar reasons to those comments I had.

I see there's decisions you've made with your blog, not only because of your background but perhaps there are some you didn't think about too much at the time, but have also become important?

For me in particular it's the choice of my banner picture. I know lots of people like to change theirs with the season, but it's the one thing I won't change. It has a dash of vegetation, which of course I write lots about, but the muli-colours and rainbow are also important. I started blogging at a major milestone and turning point in my life and those colours and rainbow represent new horizons to explore and the possibility of not being bound to talking about just one particular topic. It is of course a most positive image too (in spite of the dark skies), but it also shows my mainly optimistic outlook on life.

Now - if only I'd chosen a different blog name! Of course it's memorable, but I'm sure lots of people see it and assume I'm just talking about veg! The subtlety of the -ing ending is completely lost on most people. But the -ing's most important too, because I get so many ideas for my blog (on all kinds of topics) when I'm up at my plot :D

There's no rush about getting in touch BTW (and it's much appreciated) as I'm anticipating lots of thinking of what to do next with my blog ;)

G L Wilson said...

Thanks for your reply, shirl! (I had to think if I should put an s on the end there!) Yes, it all makes sense to me.

I didn't have that kind of problem with naming my blog. I just called it "Hog Blog" because it was a neat little rhyme.