Blog Archives

Out with the Google Reader, in with the Bloglovin’

In case you missed it, Google Reader is shutting down for good on July 1st. Why, I don’t know but here’s the scoop. It’s all good because I have discovered Bloglovin’ thanks to Pinterest. I love Pinterest.

Anyhoo, if you aren’t an avid blog reader, why the heck not? There are so many clever, creative, inspirational, encouraging and witty folks out there! Bloglovin’ makes it too dang easy to not keep up with your favorite reads. If you get behind, mark some or all as read, and you can start fresh or just catch up when you can (in the bathroom, for example).  Signing up for Bloglovin’ is super simple as is claiming your blog if you have one.  You can also set up notifications for when someone follows your blog. Another plus is your blog will get page views via Bloglovin’ which was not the case with Google Reader. You can visit my profile here and looks like this:

Michelle Maxwell Fecher (zookeeper12) on bloglovin

I used to try to keep up with my favorites  by subscribing via email or just saving blogs to my favorites. I have also subscribed with the RSS feeds but was overwhelmed when Google Reader did work. Our sporadic internet service didn’t seem to like Google Reader so I won’t be missing it.  But, hallelujah, I have entered the 21st century and I have a Smartphone! Yes, there is an App!  I am thrilled with Bloglovin’. Effortless reading, it is! It’s crisp and clean.

Bloglovin (142)

That you can categorize your blogs makes this OCD gal very happy. If I want to peruse the DIY blogs, no digging needed. I can keep my foodie, cake, homeschool and mommy blogs all sorted.

If you’ve been using Google Reader, it’s a real challenge to move your favorite blogs over to Bloglovin’ (she said sarcastically).  When you sign up, you’re prompted to this page which is extremely complicated: click the blue button.

Bloglovin

I’m sure there are other features that I’ve missed. I just got on board myself. Let me know if you join the Bloglovin’ crew! And if you need some recommendations, I have….a few….

Happy reading!

Michelle

Photo & Video Scrapbooking

I feel so geeky. I came up with this here idea and if it’s already been done, don’t tell me because I’m feeling all smart and stuff. If it hasn’t been suggested before, you’re welcome.

I love digital scrapbooking. It’s fast. It’s easy. It’s fun.  The thought occurred to me that it would be way-cool to have a smart phone, which I don’t, and, while looking through a digital album, be able to watch the videos that go with the story in the album by scanning QR codes on the album pages with that phone I don’t have.

BUT, if you have a smart phone and digital scrapbook, you can enjoy this lovely memory-keeping luxury.

QR stands for Quick Response and I know you’ve seen QR Codes on bill boards, in magazines, on business cards, etc. and they look like this:

This particular QR Code takes you to the YouTube video, “Is Anybody Cuter Than Seth?”

I found a couple of QR Code Generators you can use so you, too, can place a link to your YouTube videos in your scrapbooks. The first one is Smarty Tags and is what I used to generate the above QR Code. It was SO simple. Again, you’re welcome. The other one is Kaywa and is just as simple. Copy and paste the link, click, voila – you have your code. Download your code then you’re ready to add it to your scrapbook page.

FYI, I use Storybook Creator 4.0 for my album-making. I made the following page on Storybook Creator and I just grabbed the first page I came to so the video link is a little misplaced as it’s from January 2010 and Seth wasn’t born until the next month but I just wanted to give you an idea of how you could use this.

You could label the Code, if desired. You could have a page set up comic book style that’s one QR Code after another. There are so many possibilities! You could make a digital cookbook and add how-to videos. Gift albums for grandparents would, of course, include videos from the grandkids. I’m hoping that I will be starting an album for a special group of people with thank you messages from folks from all over the country (and from a few other places) scattered throughout the album. A wedding album would have all those well wishes included throughout the candid pages. Or a simple miss you message at the end of an album sent to a loved one serving in the military abroad. You just got choked up at the thought, didn’t you?

I hope you’re inspired. Like I said, I was feeling all clever and stuff and thought you might enjoy playing with this little idea. Enjoy!

What’s not shared is lost,

Michelle