Tag Archives: Blog

My 5-year Blogiversary!

Back in college I was famous for going on random tangents, jumping from topic to unrelated topic within seconds. No one could ever follow my thought process, which apparently made me quite (unintentionally) entertaining.

It’s also how this little blog – that turned 5 years old on Saturday — got its name.

I still remember sitting in bed early on a weekend morning setting it up on Blogger. I was headed to Europe for three weeks by myself and wanted set-up a blog to keep friends and family updated on my travels. {Facebook wasn’t all the rage yet.}

My very first post was about the Ghirardelli Guy at AT&T Park.

Summer nights in San Francisco are so cold and there is nothing better to warm you up than a nice cup of Ghirardelli hot chocolate!

But back then the Ghirardelli guys were a rarity at the ballpark. I used to spend entire games searching for them in the stands. Just as my luck would have it, they would always show up in the 9th inning – too late!

As you can see, I am still very fond of Ghirardelli’s hot chocolate…

And thankfully, these days there are more Ghirardelli guys to be found roaming the friendly confines of the Virgin Atlantic Club Level.

And, let’s not forget the $9.50 Ghirardelli Hot Chocolate sundaes…

But seriously…

I may not always (or ever) have profound words of wisdom or advice. I’m not an “expert” on anything really, and would never pretend to be one.

All I can (and want) to do is share my thoughts and experiences.

And I’m always amazed that even one person finds what I write about interesting.

So thanks to all of you who keep coming back and reading the nonsense that I write.

And as promised from yesterday’s post…

Today’s workout:

A 40-minute (1625-meter Swim) at 6:00 am (and I even had to wait 15-minutes for a lane to open up!) to the surfing tunes of Kalapana, Ka’au Crater Boys and Butch Helemano. How’s that for some Monday Motivation?!

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5 Blog Posts I Loved This Week

Who doesn’t love Friday’s? It’s been a pretty good week for me all around so I thought I’d end it by sharing some of my favorite readings from the past week:

1. Is Running Actually Healthy? And why do we care?

Jojo wrote this post in response to an article that appeared on SFGate.com (the online version of the San Francisco Chronicle) and I couldn’t agree with her more.

“We run to discover more about the world we inhabit, to connect with ourselves and others, to find out who we are and what we’re capable of, to seek solace in sorrow and to celebrate life’s blessings. We run from our primal instinct to move and transform. Sometimes we’re driven to run by forces unknown.”

“Running may be my vice or my virtue, but in any case, it brings me joy.”

2. DIY Yoga Mat Cleaning Spray

This blog post is from the folks at Free People – yep the clothing brand that I always see in tbd at Nordstrom. I started reading their blog just a few weeks ago for creative inspiration and was pleasantly surprised to read that they blog on a variety of topics. This one piqued my interest. I haven’t actually tried it yet, because I haven’t been to yoga in a few weeks, but I will definitely try it after my next Bikram Yoga class…which will hopefully be soon…

3. Need to spice up your site? Try this unlikely resource for cheap and cheerful graphics!

Not only does the Girls Guide to Web Design Team provide an amazing E-Learning course, but also they also routinely write posts on tips and tricks for Web design. Being someone who is still trying to unleash the “Creative Me”, I am a sponge absorbing all the knowledge they share. This was a great post on resources to find graphics for blog.

4. Mediterranean Chicken and Artichoke Salad

A simple salad recipe from one of my favorite food bloggers! I made this salad mid-week and have been having it for lunch for the past couple of days. Not only is it filling, but simple to make. I am not really a fan of sauces, dressings and condiments. I prefer to add flavorful ingredients to salads like feta, sun-dried tomatoes and caramelized shallots instead. But the made-from-scratch dressing in this recipe was light and really added to it’s flavor. It’s a perfect summer dish!

5. On Depression

My overall favorite post of the week was this very personal and honest one written by Andie (same blogger at Item #4). As I commented, this post felt all too familiar to me. I could empathize with her because despite being blessed with a pretty great life, I also have dark moments filled with overwhelming sadness. This is a difficult topic to open up about but reading posts like this makes me feel like I’m not alone in my similar struggles. I find it therapeutic and uplifting.

If you have any favorite posts you’d like to share, please do – I’m always looking for good reads!

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New Blog Design!

I’ve had this blog since 2007, and as I’ve changed, so has my little blog.

When I had this design created for my blog in 2009 it was exactly what I wanted at that time.

But over the past few months I didn’t really feel connected to it anymore. I wanted to change the look and feel to reflect more of who I am now. I started to make a list of the things I wanted to change and realized that what I really wanted was to learn how to make these changes by myself!

So I took to the Internet and found the Girls Guide to Web Design (GG2WD) course. It’s a self-paced, online course that provides end-to-end training on how to create, design and set-up a self-hosted WordPress site. I’ve spent the past several weeks working through the course’s 9 modules and finally felt ready to take a stab at it. I designated last Saturday as my blog redesign day.

It literally took ALL DAY – and night – to get this new look up and running. It’s not quite complete; there are more things that I want to do with it but it was about all I could manage for one day’s work. Trying to learn coding and Photoshop at the same time was overwhelming.

Throughout the process I found my biggest challenge to be formulating a vision of what I wanted the new look of my site to be. By nature, I am a very structured person. I see things in black and white, and I color inside the lines. But deep down, I KNOW there is a creative person yearning to come out. I think this is one of the reasons why I am so drawn to learn Web design.

One of the things I *loved* about the GG2WD is that Amanda really helps you find your creative vision. There are a few exercises that have nothing to do with the “nuts and bolts” of Web design; instead, she has you create an Inspiration Board to help you figure out what your new site will look like.

This was my inspiration board:

As you can see, some of the things (like the colors) changed, but for the most part, the images on it helped me to take this basic Thesis theme…

 

…and create the new look.

It may not be obvious to a random reader, but each color, font, and graphic has personal meaning to me. It’s how I see “my world though my eyes.”

Through the GG2WD course I also met Sally Hope. Sally is a life coach and a 1-hr session with her is included in the course tuition. I’m going to be honest – I had no idea what a life coach does, and wasn’t quite sure what to expect out of my session with Sally. It turned out to be a wonderful, wonderful experience.

At the time that I met with her, I was still struggling with how to implement my vision for this site. Sally coached me by asking probing, thought-provoking questions that really forced me to be honest with what I truly wanted.

What was my purpose for blogging? What do I want to get out of it? What blogs do I like? What blogs don’t I like? What do I like/not like about them?

Of course in my head I knew the answers to all these questions. But saying them out loud, and writing them down on paper really helped me to move past the impasse that I was at. As it turns out, the new look isn’t quite like what Sally and I discussed, but my session with her was the jump start I needed to evolve my ideas into what you now see.

I’m so happy with what I’ve been able to create. Everything you see here was 100% done by me. One of the mission statements of the GG2WD course was to help women feel empowered by learning web design, and that is exactly how I’m feeling right now. Words cannot describe the joy I felt I was when I uploaded my favicon! :)

Like me, this blog is a work in progress. There are still so many things that I want to do with it, but it takes a while to learn the skills, practice and then implement them. It takes a lot of time, and requires baby steps. But now, thanks to Amanda and Sally, I see my blog as my voice and my creative outlet in the very structured world that I live in. I feel a renewed sense of commitment to it and I’m excited to move forward!

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