Saturday, August 16, 2014

Spit and Polish!

Today's the day to apply a bit of spit and polish to the old blog I say!

Earlier this week fellow blogger Geniaus told us about fixing up her blog and asked for feedback.  

This led to me calling for other geneabloggers who might be interested in joining in the same sort of each other feedback and making adjustments/improvements to their blog.   

I have suggested that we say one thing we LOVE about the blog and one thing that we think could be improved/lost/added.

There are six of us so far who are prepared to take the plunge and it's by no means too late if you want to join in too.  Just add your name to the link below and post your comments on each other's blogs.

By the by, I've also discovered that the lovely Thomas MacEntee and Lisa Alzo from Hack Genealogy are running a Blogging Boot Camp this weekend.  

This ties in nicely with Shauna Hicks suggestion for today to attend or listen to a webinar or Google + Hangout.  

It's not too late to sign up for Blogger's Boot Camp.  It will be on at 3am Brisbane time but of course you can always watch the recording up to 12 months later if this weekend is too busy for you.

But in the meantime, if you think your blog could do with a bit of a makeover and you're looking for suggestions/feedback, why not join this friendly bunch of geneabloggers and commit to changing even just one thing on your blog today to improve it.

I'm off to check out Jill from Geniaus, Pauleen from Family History Across the seas, Sharon from StrongFoundations, Wendy from Jollett and True Lewis from MyTrueRoots.

PS You are probably wondering why I have this weird photo (apart from the polishing angle) - well it appealed to me straight away.  When we christened our son Caspar Daw, our Best Man was quick to point out that his name sounded like cuspidore.  I have to say that in my elevated social circles, I of course, had never come across the term cuspidore - spitting is just not my thing ;) But - I am now edu-me-cated and perhaps the wiser.  I present you with cuspidores a plenty - and shiny ones at that.


Jill Ball said...

Reading your rules again I realise that I went a bit overboard with suggestions for Cassmob but I think she has done a suoer job.

As for Family Tree Frog. I love your title, content and background image. There are two thinkgs that I think would benefit from housekeeping but I will mention just one as per the rules.

I would try to move some of the stuff from your sidebar so it isn't so long. Perhaps some could move to your footer area, some to another page and some to the trash - but it isn't for me to tell you which things - take a look at other blogs and decide what is important to your readers.

Thanks for creating this opportunity for us.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Jill - thank you for providing the inspiration! I couldn't agree with your observations more. Less is more, they always say and I am guilty of overload in this instance. It has been really instructive to go and look closely at other's blogs.

Sharon said...

I have more than one positive to mention!
Your blog is always upbeat, fun and well written (I am too serious !!!!)
The black on the picture background works well for me. The tree and the green and black appeals to me. Personally, I prefer a picture in the background rather than a boring plain page.
I like your idea of tabs and think that I would like to start a ships tab too. Great idea!

Thinking that there is too much on the side bar and it could be prioritised differently? eg. What is most important? Maybe too many "Popular Posts" as I may follow link to 2 or 3 popular posts on a blog but would never go through and read them all.

Thank you for your suggestion. I will play around with the size and color of my font.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Sharon - Thank you for your lovely kind words. I agree - way too much stuff on the sidebar. I'm like a kid in a candy shop and want it all! I'm losing those popular posts at the very least!

Wendy said...

I think I dropped the ball -- didn't even think about posting a special post announcing my participation in this blog clean-up. But I'll get to it momentarily. In the meantime let me say this about your blog: I absolutely LOVE the black, green, and white color scheme. And I like that the background image goes with your title because I'm all about unity and carrying out a theme. Your translate gadget is a good idea that I should snag although I doubt I get any foreign visitors. One thing I have noticed is that the email in your profile bounced back when I tried to contact you recently; fortunately I found the correct email through Google+ . I'm not sure why that "au" extension makes a difference because it doesn't matter whether I use it or not when I access your blog site.

Thanks for promoting this event today. I've already gotten some good ideas for my blog.

Alex Daw said...

Hi Wendy - Thanks for your great feedback. I totally stole the Translate button from the lovely Cassmob at Family History Across the Seas. Interesting regarding the email contact. Thank goodness you found one that worked. I have changed the contact me button and am testing now to make sure it works.

True Lewis said...

OHMy Goodness this was GREAT ALEX! thanks for doing this. It's always good to have a 2nd Opinion and 3rd Eyes. Other's see things you don't really appreciated this!

Alex Daw said...

Tee hee! it's been fun hasn't True. My blog looks so much better already. Now I really should turn around and do the same for my house!

ScotSue said...

A very timely challenge, Alex, as I was thinking my blog could do with a "lift . Is the first impression rather boring? I should add that I am not particularly IT savvy as regards procedures and terminology, so it was an achievement to have got where I have with it! I have been trying out different colour themes, but have ended up with virtually the same as before, as I do like the clean look of blue and white. Some time ago, I followed advice and moved my blog favourites and blog awards to a tab - and feel this has worked well. I do like a suggestion from Sharon to Wendy to set up a Search widget and must look into this. I look forward to hearing from fellow bloggers.

Alex Daw said...

Hoorah! You've joined us. That's great. I shall post my thoughts imminently.

ScotSue said...

A great idea, Alex, so here is my feedback. I should start by saying I usually dislike on sight black backgrounds and find them difficult to read. BUT your colour scheme of black, bright green and white works so well, together with a good size of font. The fact it is unusual makes it stand out from other blogs - as does your imaginative title. I particularly like some of your page headings e.g. Book of Me and the Disclaimer etc. - mine is hidden at the end of my About Me page and I can now see how it makes sense to have a separate tab for it. I also like the Search Box facility and must introduce that to my blog. I also like your large logos e.g. of Pinterest - my link is so insignificant as to be lost on my side bar. I notice you do not show Followers which do take up a lot of space on the sidebar. - and to what effect.? So overall I have learnt a lot from your blog and have no suggestions to make. Thank you.

Alex Daw said...

Dear Sue - thank you for that lovely feedback. I have been tittivating as it were since Saturday so it's good to know that I'm going in the right direction.

Jill Ball said...

I think you've done more pimping since I last looked. The Header font is super, the colour scheme goes so well with the background image and your sidebar is so tidy. Wasn't it a fun exercise. Just wish more folk would have joined in - we were the winners.

Sharon said...

The blog looks great! I always liked it anyway but it now looks terrific! Well Done!

Alex Daw said...

Thanks Jill. I'm a bit chuffed with the header font. I'm so glad you like it. It was a fun exercise. Well worth doing.

Alex Daw said...

Hoorah for all of us I say Sharon! We did great work.

Sharon said...

Thank you for the motivation :)