Category Archives: Projects

I Did It! Maybe…

Well, I did indeed move the blog last week, as I said I would. The supposedly simple and easy and straightforward and ‘oh you’ll have no problem’ process of migrating Writing from the Edge to its new home was, I’m afraid, anything but simple, easy, etc. More like confusing, disjointed, frustrating, alarming, exhausting, demented, discouraging,…  You get the idea.

I’m not sure it would be so for everyone. Because some of the things that happened were just weird. For example, I followed the instructions on WordPress for exporting and importing, and got first a notice that there’d been an “Internal Server Error” wherein the server was “unable to complete” my request. So I tried again and got a different error message entirely, something about unable to convert KarenHancock to Karen. I had no idea what that meant. Exhausted and dismayed, I quit for the day, and took Quigley for a walk.

penguin photographer_edited

The next day I did a bunch of research on what the error messages meant and what to do about them, then tried a third import. The result of that was a file opening with a list of all my blog posts telling me they “already existed.”  What?

So I went to the new blog, and there they all were. Posts and photos all together!  Apparently everything had already been migrated the day before, I just never thought to look when the error messages told me it hadn’t worked.

Well, no matter. At least it had migrated. After celebrating this first milestone, I went back to check the links, which, as some instruction had warned about, were indeed, still pointing back to the old blog. So I had to fix that.

[Insert long confusing story on my foray into the database, downloading a zip file, doing a search and replace of the relevant terms, then off to find a zip program to zip it back up, which pulled me into trying to sign up for some sort of service I wasn’t interested in just so I could get a free WinZip, until I found out I didn’t really have to sign up after all (I did not), only to have WinZip apparently not work, and in the end not be needed anyway… because all the files are now pointing in the right direction.]

chipmunck reading

Then I wanted to do this fancy new website along with the blog, but… it didn’t take me long to figure out that wasn’t going to happen any time soon.

So I gave up on that and decided it was time to tackle transferring the feeds over at Feedblitz, the service that handles about half of my blog subscribers. (I didn’t know that WordPress would send the blog email to subscribers some ten years ago when I signed up for Feedblitz… maybe because I wasn’t using WordPress when I signed up for Feedblitz…)

Anyway, that’s a very brief summary of the events of last week, leading up to this post. Hopefully, my Feedblitz readers out there will actually receive it in their inboxes tomorrow. Well, at this point, I suppose I should say “Hopefully my WordPress readers will receive it in their inboxes as well,” seeing as nothing in this process has gone as advertised, yet…

Making the Move

Well, I think I’ll be moving the blog soon. I spent the last week poring through the WordPress.org forum support articles, the GoDaddy support articles, clicking on all the links, following the instructions as far as I could without actually changing anything and just trying to get the process clear in my mind, not only what I would have to do, but what was actually happening.

I was getting an increasingly clearer view of things, but was held back by the question of whether I should migrate this blog to the new one before or after I designed the new site. Partly that’s because I’m not really sure what is going to happen — so I probably need to do additional reading. Will the entire blog go to the new place with the theme and templates and all that? What would happen if I had set up a new theme and template and then uploaded the old blog?

I asked a GoDaddy tech person and she suggested I do the designing first and the migrating second, but I didn’t know as much about it when I asked her as I do now — i.e., I think that the theme will be moved, and would conflict in some way if there was a different theme on the new site. Plus, I want to make the home page different from the blog.

But, I still don’t know, despite having made it through all the articles provided by GoDaddy Support, and there are two sets of those — one on the new site itself, and another in the General Support documentation. And they’re not exactly the same. And then there are the WordPress.com instructions and the WordPress.org instructions… Most people are probably not as OCD about it all as I am.

I have, at least, managed to figure out how to access my new database, which is needed to upload this blog into the new site. That took me several days. Okay, not several whole days, because we’ve got lots of other “real life” things going on as well.

And then yesterday, toward the end of the day I discovered “Duplicator,” which is a plugin mentioned at the end of a GoDaddy article on how to move your blog. It’s a free plugin, that will do the whole thing for you. Zips the original blog, then exports it, automatically replaces the old URLs with the new all throughout the database, and then imports it to the new site. It’s what the GoDaddy support people use when they move a blog for clients. There were 392 five-star reviews of it, 15 four-star reviews and nothing lower.

Still, it sounds too good to be true. They do they say it’s for the more tech-savvy of their customers, but if it’s really as easy as it seems, why would they not advise everyone to get it? Because what I’m having to do now seems like it involves a lot of tech savvy-ness itself. Maybe even more.

Of course, there is the problem of my never having done anything with a plugin… but that doesn’t seem all that difficult either so…

Anyway, I hope to be making the move soon, maybe tomorrow or Monday (okay, possibly even today). It’s my hope that all my subscribers and followers will hardly notice, if they notice at all. I will have to return to Feedblitz to point it in a new direction for picking up the new blog, which probably will not be as easy as it sounds…

In any case, my current plan is to publish this post today, let Feedblitz do its thing tonight, then do the move tomorrow or Monday, and make all the attendant adjustments and fixes before sending out a post from the new site when I think it’s working okay.

UPDATE:  Just talked to GoDaddy support again. The tech I spoke with confirmed the advisability of moving the blog first, then doing the designing. Plus, he told me a bit more about what was supposed to happen in the move, and advised that I do an export right now, and save that on my local computer.  In fact, in the instructions for migrating to the new site, I’m specifically told to leave this current blog working, so the images will transfer properly.  Which means I can probably do a transfer any time after publishing this post and work out the rest of the details later.

Adventures in Feedblitzland

Every day’s a new adventure!

After turning off my tendency to worry about how I’m going to accomplish all the things I have to accomplish in the project of setting up a new website and blog, I resolved to give it over to the Lord, to stop trying to figure it out and let Him lead me.

I did not expect that He would lead me to deal with Feedblitz today. Feedblitz is the service that converts my blog posts to emails and sends them out to those of you who have subscribed so that you receive them in your Inboxes. (You can subscribe — I think — using the “Click here to subscribe” link in the sidebar.)

I’m trying to decide if I should move the blog over to the GoDaddy WordPress incipient website first and then design the two together, or design the website first, then move the blog. Or, not move the blog at all, simply link to it. That would be easier, but the whole would not end up as pleasing.

So I decided to head over to Feedblitz just to see how difficult it would be to change things there if I moved my blog to a new URL. Well, not hard at all, supposedly. At least as they described it. But then, changing out your email wasn’t supposed to be hard either.

Somehow I ended up doing that… changing out my admin email. And in the process I lost my entire subscriber list! You don’t just change the email address, you have to “merge” your existing list/”site” named by the old email address with a new, non-existent list/site named by your new one. Then they send an email to the old address to approve and the new address with instructions on logging in and approving… and then suddenly you are dealing with a template, and all kinds of social media feeds (or whatever they are) and well, they were asking me the weirdest questions as I set up my “publisher profile,” questions I didn’t think they should be asking someone who was doing what I was doing that I was becoming uneasy and frustrated. Especially when I had no idea how to answer.

And then I noticed that the tab leading to my “sites” had vanished.

I panicked, went looking everywhere throughout my account panel, couldn’t find them anywhere. I went searching through the documentation. Nothing on losing one’s entire subscriber list. Then one thing led to another, as I tried this and that (including emailing Feedblitz’s support and posting a public question) I even went back to previously opened browser windows and suddenly there were my sites again. (I say sites because even though I only have one Writing from the Edge blog, for some reason I had 2 “sites” for it.) But when I tried to get to that page through a normal login, they had vanished again.

Long story short,  I had to finish updating the publisher profile. Once I did that, they reappeared for good. But they were no longer under the “My Sites” tab which had been done away with, but under the Account Dashboard link.

How can things that are so basically simple get so weird and complicated?

Anyway, if you are a regular subscriber and have received this blog in your inbox via email and you feel inclined to reply, I’d appreciate knowing if at least some of you have received it. And if it looks different from what you’re used to.  You can either reply directly to me or in the comments. Thanks.

The Mystery Project Unveiled

Over the weekend, we gathered together with my son, daughter-in-law and extremely cute granddaughter up in Pinetop, AZ, and that is why I had to finish my Big Project last week — so I could give it to her. It was a quiet book.

I got the pattern for free from a website called Modest Maven. You can see the original I worked from HERE. And you can download your own pattern and instructions there, as well. Or other things: she sews a lot of stuff for her friends and family all the time.

The book has twelve pages of different activities, several of which I’ve pictured below from the book I made.  The last picture was a substitute for Maven’s telephone because  I thought the old-style landline telephone, with its hand receiver connected by  a coiled wire to its base and rotary number dial would be something unidentifiable to today’s kids as a phone. Furthermore, I could think of no way to represent the modern-day cell phone with its number pads, or worse just the screen, in any way that would work in a quiet book. So I substituted an apple tree with hooks…

Anyway, here’s a look at a few pages:

use the velcro-attached balloons to match the colors

velcro-attached clothes dress the little girl and a mitt fits just right on a little hand

Felt buttoned on flowers and and a lace-up football.

A zippered tent with a little dog in it (who looks suspiciously like Quigley… but that was purely accidental. Really. ) and two children who can be put to bed or taken out as desired

the aforementioned apple tree