It looks like there is going to be a nice slight change to the way that I can share photos. I am still going to post photos to the blog the way I always have. But I am going to automatically share them with friends and family on google+. You might have received an invitation recently with the latest photos we took at the pumpkin patch. I guess we will see what this way will do in terms of sharing. The photos as you notice will still show up in picasaweb as they always have
We are up in Kansas City right now. I finally got my iPhone replaced and have been wanting to try out the wordpress app for the iPhone. It us one of the reasons that I decided to go to wordpress from blogger. You can’t beat blogging on the go. So far I am really impressed with the app and am excited about what I will be able to do with it.
Well I am happy with what I have come up with on the new site front. It is a different direction that I have wanted to take the site in. I have moved from the conventional site to having the blog as the main focus of the site. Since all our photos and videos are hosted else where, it eliminates the need for a full website like we previously had.
Now joshandkristee.com takes you straight to the blog and then from there you can get to our photos, videos and my personal blog. Hopefully this new direction will be easier to maintain than the previous style. I am not completely finished with the over feel, but it is good start to what I hope to be our new site layout.
Any thoughts or opinions, things missing are very welcome.
If you are coming to our site you are now seeing a different look to the website. I am toying around with a different direction to take the website. So please bare with me as I try to get the new layout/ design figured out.
I have now been on twitter for a couple of months now and am loving it. Jon is the one that got me into it and I use it a lot. For those that may not know it is like mini blogging about what I am up to throughout the day. Occasionally I post photos taken with my phone, but mostly it is used to communicate what I am up to. If you are on twitter and want to follow me my twitter name is joshmetts. If you are on twitter let me know I would like to follow you too. I have also added a twitter feed to the side of the blog.
Just wanted to put up a quick post to let everyone know that I have updated the search box with a box powered by google as you can see on the right. We have always had a search box, but this one is integrated as a part of the blogger service as long as you are using the blogger draft dashboard. It will be released soon as a part of the blogger service so I guess it is sort of a beta. Anyways it is extremely slick I am very impressed with the way the search function works. I can’t describe it, you just need to test it out yourself and you will see just how awesome it is. Even if you have nothing to search for come up with something I have talked about and search it, it is very sweet!
The 2 that keep up with my imeem page please continue I will still be putting videos and such on but would love it if you guys and anyone else would subscribe to my “new” blog titled JOSHMETTS, I know really original. The layout is much like this one, hey I like to keep things very clean and simple. I am really excited about it and plan on posting a lot more on it than I did with imeem. It is a lot easier now. Look forward to hearing from you.
If you want to just subscribe with your rss reader just click here.
In addition to the updated blog I found more interesting settings that I can do with Blogger now. I have been able to add a 3 columns to the blog rather than just the 2 column look. And with all of the extra widgets that I have been adding it just makes a simpler way to view them all without having to scroll so far down the page.
I love the way the labeling is set up now, instead of being a long list it is now a label cloud and now I have included every label that I have. For those of you that don’t know how a cloud works, the bigger and bolder the label the more post have that label applied, also you can hover your cursor over the label and the number of post shows up also. I like this just because it looks cool and is also very functional without being a super long list. I have also moved up our subscribe buttons to the top right corner for visibility and ease. You can also subscribe to our comments now too. It is handy people who comment on our blog a lot and want to see if there is ever a response to your comments. (but I guess that only applies to you Jon, since you are the only one that puts comments on our blog regularly.)
I have added a couple of new “favorites” links to the left side. I have also added a little photo stream from our picasa web albums. Although the photo bar was at the top before, but now it is actually being used by the widgets and will allow me to change the pictures every once in awhile a little easier. These are all the changes that I have made lately and will probably be the last for at least a little while. Even if you looked at the page before check it out again, I am really happy withe the new layout.
I just finished labeling all of our post. Now you can access all post associated with any particular label. Another neat thing, not that anyone would really use it on our blog, but you can subscribe to only certain individual labels. Just click on a label then scroll to the bottom and there is a subscribe link. Like I said though there is really no reason to do that with our blog due to the fact that it is really not a topic based blog. The labels are there to quickly find any particular subject that I have written about. I have more labels than that, but I am only going to list the ones with 4 or more labels. Just something extra and useful.
I was up pretty late last night doing a major upgrade to our blog. It actually may not look like much to most people, but blogger was bought by google a while back and they have just made blogger the “new blogger”. I didn’t have to make the change, but in order to take advantage of all of the “new” blogger functions, I had to move to the new templates. The funny thing is that the template looks exactly the same as before, but the code is completely different. Therefore the actually blog address has changed, it is now http://blog.joshandkristee.com. Although if you get to our blog via the website you will notice no difference, but if you access the blog directly then you will need to change your bookmark. Also if you subscribe to our blog then you will have to resubscribe (sorry) via the new rss feed. There is one on the side bar and at the very bottom.
One of the biggest things that blogger has now added is labels (or tags) for each individual post. Some may have noticed at the end of each post there are labels at the bottom allowing me to label each post into categories, which helps with find specific things a lot faster. That has been going on for the past several months, but one of the things I wanted was a list of the labels on the sidebar and the only way to add that to the blog was to make the switch over to a blogger hosted blog, hence the address change. (Our old blog was hosted on our server, through blogger.) So I made the switch last night. As you can see if you look at our blog on the side bar a little ways down below the Archive section. I am still in the process of labeling all of our post so it will be easy to access all posts from the beginning till now.
Now onto the other features that I discovered because of the update. Starting at the top, as you can see I have added a new photo collage, it was easy to do with the new blogger “widgets” or tools as I would call them. I thought it would add a little life and color to the blog, plus help it blend with our website even more.
The first new thing you will notice at the top of the sidebar is “Josh’s imeem feed”. Some of you know that I have an imeem page with all kinds of stuff music, videos, and another blog. I use that blog to write about and post things that interest me, but do not pertain to our family. I want to keep this blog for all things family related. Anyways it is an rss feed of the latest 5 post on my imeem page, I don’t post a ton of stuff there, but every once in awhile I will add something. I will be writing a post about another browser pretty soon, so if that interest you keep and I out. I thought that was pretty neat and again with the new blogger tools it was a piece of cake to add.
On down past all the links is the new and improved Blog Archive. It is no longer a drop down box as before, but a very well organized archive. Not only does it archive by month but also by year which looks very clean in my opinion. But it also serves 2 functions. Our old blog contained Recent Post, but now with the way it displays the month the recent post are right there below the months, just click the arrow to drop down a list of past months post. I think it looks very nice and again it was very simple to do. The old blog’s drop down menu required me to mess with the code, this is just done with the new tools.
On further down is the little logos, these are all things that I use and am very happy with and want to share them everyone that reads our blog. I don’t get paid if you click on them, I just like these products, 3 of them which are free. Feel free to check them out. I have added a new one there that says GET FLOCK, it is a fairly new browser I found based on Firefox, it is the browser I am going to do a review about on imeem. (Safari is giving me problems and I quit using Opera awhile back.)
The other thing that I have been wanted to have with our blog is better search engine spidering for the blog via Google and Yahoo. The code in the new blogger is a lot cleaner and will hopefully work better with search engines that spider our site. We will see whether or not this happens. The new blogger blows the old blogger out of the water, it way easier to customize and has added a lot of cool features that make blogging a lot better. I didn’t even scratch the surface for all the new features and tools that make blogger more enjoyable than ever to use, check it out if you are interested in starting one. (for those of you who have blogs with blogger and haven’t posted in a while you need to check out the new blogger, you know who you are.) For those of you that made it through the entire post congratulations, it was long one and a little boring for some of you, but I do appreciate those who do read our blog regularly. I have a really enjoy sharing everything that is going on in our lives.
As you can see I have added a new item to the side bar on the blog. (Unless you are viewing the rss feed, you may need to go to the actual blog to see what I am talking about.) I discovered a pretty neat message board system that works with just about any blog called tag-board. It is basically a place to type a simple message to say Hi or whatever you want. I know that the blog already has a commenting system for each post and it isn’t meant to replace it but just add another element to messaging on our blog. I have posted 4 messages from each of us just to demonstrate/ test its functionality. It is really just an easy way to leave us a quick message in which we will read and reply. Anyways I just thought it was pretty neat and I hope that a few of you out there that do read our blog will make use of it. We really do love getting comments or messages even if it isn’t related to a post. Look forward to hearing from you.
I decided to take the my space plunge, to take a quote from Jon “I’m here and I don’t like it!” I have never like my space due to some of the crazy (headache causing) designs of most of the pages that I have viewed. I will say that they have got a good thing going with finding friends and keeping connected to them. What influenced me to get a myspace page was multiple factors, had a couple friends and brother start my space pages and also found a few high school friends on my space. I already obviously have a website so the main reason for the my space page is to connect with friends and that is it. I did want to take pride in how my space page looked, so with the help of Jon and Mike Industries I was able to come up with a design that I really like a lot. I wanted to keep it simple and pleasing to the eye. I know I said that I would never have a my space page, but I guess never say never!!! The only use I see for it is to connect and reconnect with friends and that is all, it definitely cannot replace your own website. If interested click the link below to visit.
For anyone interested I just added a little review of Opera 9 (latest release) over on my imeem blog. I have made the switch to using Opera as my primary browser and am really excited about it.