A Tale of 2 WAHMs

Ramblings of 2 WAHMs - Anita DeFrank and Kara Kelso. Partners in business discuss how we manage successful websites and young children at home.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Goals for 2007

Here it is, the last day of 2006. Amazing how fast time flies by, and another year has past. In between attempting to put my house back together after Christmas, I've been attempting to do some brainstorming and work on goals for 2007. I can't say I've done that well (ha ha).

Nothing all that spectacular has come to me as far as ideas go, but I have put a few things in motion which I'm thinking will help everyone in the new year.

The candle site is moving along so well, I really don't think I need to come up with anything "new" to do with it. Just more SEO work like I have been doing, as well as more link work and promotion of the new blog. Sales are coming in every day - I'm happy. ;)

The scrapbooking site is still coming along. New members are joining every day, so it's doing alright in my book. It's going to be put on the back burner for the time being until I see some real results from the work I've put into it so far. The only thing I plan to work on is a few link exchanges.

Idea Queen needs work again, this time focusing on more holidays. Everything was going great from August clear into late December, but now things have dropped off. I had no pages focused on this time of year or until spring for that matter. It's still pulling in a few hundred visitors a day from the recipe pages, but nothing like it was doing with the holiday pages. It could be doing much better, so it's time for link exchange work. Actually, this site never has had "link page" exchange work done to it, so I guess it's time.

My other concern with Idea Queen is the income. It's not even close to where it should be for the number of visitors it's pulling in. Since it's a resource site, I've been using mostly AdSense for an income source. Lately it's been absolutely pathetic. 200 visitors is NOT worth $2 or less. Something definitely has to be done to improve the income on that site one way or another. Now it's just a matter of figuring out how to do it!

Now if you notice on all site the main goal was link work. I don't know if everyone is still on vacation or not, but I got very little response from link exchange requests. I mean VERY little. Three sites and tons of topics, and maybe 3 exchanges total. NOT cool. I mean what gives? I see link exchange requests all the time! Granted I didn't reply to the ones I saw a few months ago simply because I wasn't working on it at the time. Do you think I can find those now? Heck no!

So I thought what we all REALLY needed was some type of database to find link exchange. No, I'm not talking an automated link exchange directory like you see on some sites or a massive link farm site. But rather a private database of sites always looking for link exchanges. It's an ongoing process, right? We need to ALWAYS work on more links, yes? That's why I set up a yahoo group with a link exchange database. I'm still working out the bugs on it before I officially release it, but it's up anyway. Feel free to sign up and let me know what you think of the idea. :)

Last but not least, I have one more small idea in the back of my head which I'm not quite ready to share yet. I bought a few books on Amazon last night that I've had my eye on for awhile, and one focuses on this idea. The idea came when I was asked to think about what I really love to do. I love marketing, but not just ANY marketing. I love SEO. No, this idea isn't SEO services. I wouldn't want to be responsible for something like that, plus Cricket does such a good job with her classes that I just wouldn't want to step on her toes. This idea does involve SOME SEO though, enough to make me really love what I'd be doing. I'm looking for a few "test subjects" before I officially launch this idea, so I probably won't be saying anything for another week or two. ;) Curious yet?

2006 wasn't all that bad, but I'm determined to make 2007 ten times as great!

Friday, December 29, 2006

New Candle Blog

I finally got around to setting up a real blog on WordPress, complete with it's own domain name and everything. As much as I'd like to do that with this blog, I just don't think it's in the cards. I don't want to lose all the hard work we've put into promoting this blog, and all the backward links associated with it. Even though trying to optimize this blog for the search engines is giving me a major headache, moving it just isn't worth it at this point.

The blog associated with Prairie Soy Candles on the other hand, was completely worth moving. There was no backward links, hardly anything indexed, and it had zero PR. So I moved it to it's own domain name, Candle-Talk.com, and I'm already in love with it. I'm sure there's additional SEO work which needs to be done, but I won't know until it's been indexed and I can see how it looks in Google.

What I think I love the most about the new blog is the ability to add categories. It gives the blog a bit more organization, and makes it a whole lot easier to zoom in on specific topics. Who knows, you may talk me into moving this blog to WordPress even yet!

Money Hacks

It's a relatively "new term" and can be a big help. (Especially after all the holiday spending). I came across a great article that teaches you "money tricks" or "money hacks". I thought I'd share it with you. There's some great ideas such as:

Plastic High Finance
The credit card hack. If you pay your credit cards off in full every month (which you do, right?), you can give yourself an interest-free loan of a month or more on major purchases simply by charging big-ticket items right after your card's closing date...

12 Cool Money Tricks

And if you have any "money hacks" you use ... please feel free to share!

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Back To Work - Hurray!

The day after Christmas and it's back to work....HURRAY! No, that's not sarcasm. I really AM happy to be back. I couldn't wait to jump on the computer this morning and return to some sort of normal routine that didn't involve wrapping paper or toys. The house still looks like the North Pole exploded, but that's a different story.

I really was excited to get back to work today. It was time to work on link exchanges a bit, since I hadn't done that in I don't know how long. Some sites I've never done it for, and some are so new it hadn't even been thought of yet. I really do prefer to do main page exchanges rather than traditional link exchanges, but figured I should get at least some "regular" exchanges done.

In between family stuff this weekend, I worked on getting a link exchange page and regular "link to us" page done on my candle site. Instead of a few regular home page links, I added other side pages to the options. Figured it would be a really good idea to have a little variety out there as far as links back go. Some of my internal pages need the ranking help - the home page really isn't doing that bad.

After I made a few requests for the candle site, I had to go and work on Idea Queen a bit too. It never really had a "real" link page - all that was ever done there was main category page exchanges. Meaning if an exchange of any kind was done, the link didn't go on a "link page" but instead a home page or product page. Since traditional exchanges are easier to do, I figured it was time to set something up. So it also got it's own link exchange page. It's a bit more complicated, and I'm requiring specific sites use specific links from the site. Very few will be using the home page, since I'm still clueless on how to optimize it for the search engines. My fault for making the site such a wide topic. No one searches for general ideas for parents.

Since I had planned to send out a general message to a few groups, I threw The Scrapbooking Source in the mix too. It's still just a baby and can use all the incoming links it can get at this point. I feel a bit bad that I haven't been working on it lately, but I think it's time to back away slightly. I want to see how well it does with rankings and popularity before I put more time into it, or see what else needs to be done.

Hoping tomorrow I have quite a few links to work with. It's so hard to wait on projects when I want it done right this very minute. What's even worse for me though is waiting for the search engines to catch up with me and acknowledge the things I've done to the site. I'm the type of person who wants to see immediate results, which is a hard to deal with when you are working with search engines!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Christmas Trees

I finally got everything wrapped last night. I was so proud of myself, and the tree looked half way decent with presents all the way around it. I love giving gifts, so I loved seeing all the nicely wrapped packages all sitting under the tree. As much as I complain this time of year, I was pretty please last night and feeling a bit of the "holiday cheer". That is, until one thought hit me.

I have to take that damn tree down next week. *sigh*

Here I was thinking how easy the fake tree was going to be this year, but I guess I forgot about that tiny detail of having to put it away. I'm starting to think it would have been easier to get the real tree after all I went through trying to get this one up. What's easier than dragging a half-dead tree to the curb? The pine needles would have been a mess though, so I guess maybe not.

I'm just not looking forward to taking that tree down piece by piece. Then there's the added bonus of finding somewhere to store it. I may just return it to who I borrowed it from, but chances are they aren't going to want it back. Like I really need anything else in my garage, but I suppose this is one those things we just have to have, eh?

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Candle Site Moved

I love GoDaddy, I really do. They are very reliable and setting up a site with them is super easy. They work perfect for small sites and sites without "bells and whistles", even if those sites have boatloads of traffic. PHP and databases really don't have many problems, especially message boards and things like that.

Attempting to install and run some scripts on a GoDaddy site is another story.

I recently discovered Zen Cart and GoDaddy don't play nice together. I had no problems before, but the store was a bit slow. Nothing too major, until last week. It was taking ME on cable up to a minute to load EACH PAGE. Completely unacceptable. I'm not completely placing the blame on GoDaddy, because there really is issues with Zen and it's database queries.

So I had two choices here. Find a new shopping cart or find a new host. Both sounded absolutely horrifying.

Looking for a different cart would mean finding something which was as nice as zen for free or paying tons. Then I'd have the added fun of trying to install it, and re-uploading every single product and scent. Then if I didn't like it or if GoDaddy didn't like it either, I'd have to find something else. Uh, no thanks.

Finding a new host would mean I may have to do the same thing - start from scratch and re-upload all the products and scents. Double yuck. Although there was the option of backing up the database and moving it over. I didn't have a CLUE how to do this though.

My final decision was moving to a new host. I decided if I wanted other "extras" on this site, there may be more problems down the road. Absolutely terrified, I backed up the database and jumped in with two feet. It wasn't as bad as I thought it was going to be, and after a few bumps in the road I managed to fully restore the database on the new server. WOO-HOO!!! I can't tell you how happy I was last night, giggling and zipping through my site which was now moving at the same speed as my cable instead of dial-up like it had been.

I'm easily amused, I know this. I'm happy with my new site though. *GRIN*

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Music At Work?

I'm curious to know how many people out there listen to music while they work. Some days it's a must for me, but others I don't care much.

I've grown tired of the radio and all the played out songs, so don't listen to it much anymore. I use to listen to my CDs on my computer because it was easy, but my computer is lacking space so all my CDs had to be deleted. Changing CDs is a hassle when I'm trying to work, so it's not often I put in a CD unless I've got a song in my head.

This has changed though. The other day I'm in the car attempting to get in one of my favorite Ames channels in. For those not in Iowa, it's a pretty good sized city a good hour from Des Moines. I'm east of Des Moines. The channel comes in alright in certain areas around here, but just not good enough sometimes. I can't get it at all in the house, which is a major bummer. Then I hear in the car they now have a LIVE STREAM ONLINE! WOO HOO!

Now why am I so excited about this? Because they have a thing called "90s at Noon" every day from noon to 1pm. Sweeeeeeet. I'm sitting here listening to it now, and the first song they play is an old Oasis song. How cool is that? I haven't heard Oasis in forever.

So what about you? Do you like music as you work or do you need total silence?

Monday, December 18, 2006

Beware of SEO Services

It's late and I should be heading to bed, but I got distracted reading emails and something caught my eye. I'm know expert at SEO by any means, but I do know a thing or two. Let me tell you a bit about my experiences in SEO before I jump into my huge rant so you don't think I'm just some newbie who doesn't know a thing.

Cricket has taught me quite a bit, so I have to give much credit to her for my recent successes. Although before her classes and stretching back to days when Google was really all you had to worry about, I had 500+ pages sitting at the top of thousands of keyword phrases. Back in the day when it didn't take much to secure a top ranking aside from title and tags, and content was just an option. I had thousands of visitors a day all from the search engines and life was good. Yahoo split, then went MSN, and Google started putting more of an emphasis on content thanks to the SE spammers ruining the fun. I spent some time trying to get my rankings back before giving up on those old pages for good some time in 2005.

I never really completely gave up on SEO, and kept on plugging away in the dark. I knew most of the basic "rules", and used them on a new site. It didn't do bad, but not great. When I found Cricket's class a few months ago, I finally saw those "missing pieces" on my sites. BINGO! Back in action. Not as quickly as before in the easy days of SEO, but back with a little more work all the same. Things are good again.

Now I feel the need to say this again - I am no SEO expert, but I'm not clueless either. Tonight I found someone who hangs around some of the same groups I do, selling SEO services. I was absolutely horrified at what I saw on their own site. I counted I don't know how many "SEO no-no's" that weren't just minor. They were HUGE! We're talking basic SEO completely missing from this site. It makes me absolutely sick to think they are SELLING services when their own site isn't even optimized nor does it even rank for ANY of the keywords in their home page title....or any other page for that matter. Now wouldn't you think if you were selling SEO services, you would have a nicely ranked site too? Not this one!

If you still think I'm just some ranting nut case, here's some of the things I found on their site which are just major mistakes:

- No unique titles
Many of the pages I found on this site (including the home page), just echo the business name and a general "Search engine optimization". Go ahead and search that term on Google, you won't find the site I'm talking about here.

- No meta tag descriptions or keywords
So not a major deal, but still something you would think they would at least put in. I take that back, I can see their is a description for their home page only. I can see meta tag descriptions (or lack there of) by doing a simple search on Google for site:http://www.theirsite.com . Go ahead and check out one of mine, you'll see it. Ok well not the blog maybe, but that's a whole other rant and I promise I'm working on it. Check Idea Queen, you'll see what I'm talking about.

- Wrong home page link
The home page has a full url, but includes "index.htm". BAD. I can understand this being a mistake on other sites and you might even find a few on my sites. HOWEVER, we're not selling SEO services are we? Heck no! Google is going to see two different versions of that home page (ndex.htm version and the regular link)and think it's duplicate content. BAD.

- Site Submission Services
They promise to submit your site to search engines. I only have this to say - WHY? If they are building incoming links, why would they need to submit?? Search engines find your site naturally by crawling sites, so there is NO need for this. NONE!

- Testimonies Don't Mean Much
The sites which have testified to her services aren't ranked for terms on their site, or the keyword phrase isn't even searched. This is a super easy basic - find what terms people are searching for and go from there. Anyone can use this keyword suggestion tool. What's worse, some of these sites have PR3s, which is about the lowest you can get on just minimal marketing. All my sites have at least a PR3, and those which have had a little more attention a PR4. Some even have a PR5. It's really not that hard to do, if it's promoted the right way. These sites obviously weren't.

Alright I'll stop my rank right here because I could just go on for days. I have my own business to take care of, but I did want to put this here as a warning. Do your research and take the time to take a free SEO tutorial or class. There are just too many scammers out there, and people that really don't know what they are doing but doing it anyway. Sad but true!

SEO Crazy

I have officially become SEO crazy, and I'm absolutely loving it. Every time I take Cricket's SEO class, I get completely motivated to do more work on all my sites.

I started this class with the intention of working on the new scrapbooking site, but once the lesson on static urls hit I was distracted.

Our candle sales aren't bad by any means. This has been one awesome shopping season. The site has a pretty good ranking for several really good terms, so I'm not complaining. Although ever since I set up zen cart for the actual store front, those icky php links have been bugging me. I knew there was a mod somewhere I could install (I already did for the scrapbooking community boards, and it's the same thing really - php and databases), but I just knew it was going to be a major headache. I finally gave myself a great big kick in the rear and did it....but I was right. It was a big headache. Bugs all over the place! All is working fine now though, and it's finally "SEO friendly".

Of course, since I was playing with the candle site again, I took a look at my home page and realized it needed work too. The copy didn't look to bad and it read just fine (everything where it should be), but the word count was extremely low. I know better than that, and I have no idea why I left it before. So over the weekend I fixed that problem, and added another 300+ words. MUCH better! Let's see how she ranks NOW. *grin*

I really want to get back to working on the scrapbooking site, but now the product information page on the candle site is bugging me. Again the copy isn't bad, but the word count is low. BAD! WHY I just left these and said "good enough" is beyond me. I really DO know better! I know there were several I left on Idea Queen, but that was only because my brain just couldn't come up with anything else to write. I did a semi-fix to that problem though, seeking out additional content from others in exchange for credit (their website link on the page).

There's only one other thing bugging me, and that's this blog right here. You would think since Blogger is owned by Google, they would make it SEO friendly to their own search engine. Ohhhh no, not even close! I've already done some tweeks to the template to make it better, but it's still not where it should be. Too late to move this blog over now - we've had it for FAR too long. We knew better, but this just seemed like the easy thing to do at the time. :(

Well I'm off to get more SEO work done - oh I just love seeing new rankings pop up all over the place! *grin*

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

The Pains of Christmas

So it may not be a big secrete - I really don't care for Christmas. I'm not the holly jolly type who loves to pull everything out the day before Thanksgiving, or listen to Christmas music. No offense to those that do - I'm glad you've found a season which makes you happy. That's just not me.

Most can trace my hatred for Christmas back to when I was in high school, and I lost a very, very close friend just days before. Going to a friend's funeral at 15 the day before Christmas tends to leave an emotional scare for years. This year marks 10 years since that day, so that doesn't make it any easier. Oops, did I just give out my age? You didn't hear that....

Now I really do try to get into the mood, and it's been better since my kids are getting older. They put me more in the spirit, and I've grown to absolutely LOVE shopping for them. I tend to get more excited than they do when it comes time to open. I'm a total push-over when they say "can we open one NOW?". I just can't wait to see their face when they see what I got them. It makes me feel good to see them so happy.

Even still, if the memories of my friend wasn't bad enough this time of year, Christmas has it's own set of major pains to deal with. We FINALLY got the tree up yesterday. I attempted to get it up Sunday, but it just wasn't happening. I'm so glad I nixed the idea of a real tree this year, because there's just NO WAY this single mom was going to get a real tree standing straight with the help of a 4 and 6 yr old. The fake tree I borrowed from my grandparents, who haven't used it for years. What's the point? We all gather here now, since it's just way easier that way.

But even the fake tree gave me major problems. It's an older tree so I don't know if it ever had it's own stand, but let me tell you this - fake trees and real tree stands DO NOT MIX. After several hours and several blisters later, I left the tree leaning against the wall cursing it several times. Luckily yesterday I found a stand that fit (on the first try even, woo hoo! Thank you standard size fake tree stand!), so the tree is now standing without wires or nails. Of course, only half the lights work, but who gives a ****. *grin* I tried them before they went on the tree and they were fine. Never fails, does it?

Then last night I was setting my alarm clock, and happen to catch somebody talking about "how stressful the holidays are". My immediate reaction was oh buddy, you don't even know the half of it. You want stressful holidays? Try owning a business! I guarantee your "holiday stress" will triple. Christmas for us started in October, and hasn't stopped yet. Just as things are slowing down, it's now time for all the family crap. We haven't made our traditional Christmas decorations yet, and there's two Christmas programs to go to this week. I haven't even started wrapping presents, and there's still sewing projects I need to finish up because they are gifts. Cookies for neighbors and friends? Oh yeah right, that's going to happen. NOT!

So anyway, don't mind me if you see me muttering "bah humbug". If you love Christmas, just ignore me. I'm getting better, but I still really don't like the season.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Tool to Track Adsense!

Woo Hoo! Thank you Lynn Terry for pointing me in the direction of yet another a great tool! And the shocker is the price! If you've been reading our blog for very long, you probably already know that I tend to dislike the "next new guru product" - and only for $97! LOL (NO, that's not even near the price).

Okay, I wasn't even going to tell you the price, I was going to make you go see for yourself (leaving it up to you real go-getters) but I can't help it. A tool to track your Google Adsense (by simply installing it to your hosting) for only $9.99! *GRIN*

And before I go on about the tool itself ... I have to mention this too. Not only do you get the tool but, you also get into the closed affiliate program. What does closed affiliate program mean? It means you can't even get in until you try the product yourself. I *love* that idea. That means, you're not reading a recommendation from someone who hasn't even tried the product, you're reading a recommendation of someone who has actually tried it! That itself to me was well worth the price.

Oh, and I almost forgot ... one more note about that affiliate program. Guess what you earn? You earn 100% on each sale! So, this means, you'll get your money back when you recommend this to just one person!

Sooooo, what's so great about AdSpyTracker? (Besides the price, lol!) I honestly couldn't do justice telling you myself everything this tool has to offer ... so see what Matt Callen, the creator has to say:

= = >The EXACT keyword search terms that are drawing your visitors to any of your webpages.

= = >The actual efficiency of every AdSense Ad on ANY of your webpages!

= = >The precise AdSense Ads that are being clicked most frequently on your site. This secret information is kept behind closed doors if you try to get it directly from Google.

= = >The exact pages that your AdSense Ads are being clicked on. Don't hassle with creating dozens and dozens of channels in your AdSense account. Put one small snippet of code onto your site and Viola!

= = >Your Unique Visitor Ratio by grabbing each person's IP address. Track your visitors and learn your demographics that bring in the most clicks! A great way to prevent click-fraud.

= = >The precise hour of the day you are getting the most clicks... in REAL TIME! Now you can instantly respond to your stats without having to wait on Google's lag-time.

= = >The actual Ad Formats that are bringing you the most clicks. You can quickly test and track which size and color formats, AdUnits, and AdLinks drop the most cash into your account!

= = >The click-through rate for EACH and EVERY page so you know which content is producing the most hits!

= = >No More Lousy Guesswork! You don't have to make guesses about which domains your ads are viewed on, which pages they are clicked on, and more importantly which ads are actually clicked! Leave the guesswork to the newbie publishers!

= = >Precisely how to boost your supporting content and target your Google search terms for AdSense. With AdSpyTracker you'll be able to do it all...Bring in hauls of cash and loads of targeted traffic by tracking your AdUnits, AdLinks, and AdSense for Search!

= = >And Much More...

I have been working hard to increase my Adsense income lately so AdSpyTracker is pretty much an answer to my prayers ... and AdSpyTracker helps some much that I don't have to work as hard on it! No more guessing for me *GRIN*

Let me know what you think!!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Easy Homemade Pizza Crust

It never fails - whenever you are in a hurry is when whatever you need is lost. Tonight I decided to make pizza but was running a bit behind. I needed my pizza crust recipe and of course, it's GONE. No idea what happen to it (although I might have pitched the printed paper last time I made it, thinking I had it somewhere on my computer or online). So then I start searching for it on my computer, and also nowhere to be found. Well I know there was one issues of MHMM Ezine where I gave away my "special pizza crust recipe", so I ended up having to track down that issue. HOLY CRAP what a hassle!! I finally found it 20 mins after starting my search, knowing I had to get it done RIGHT NOW.

Anyway, the recipe is now saved safely on my computer and reprinted with the copy in my recipe drawer. I'm posting the recipe here for your enjoyment....well ok, mostly so if it gets lost again I'll have a better idea of where it is. *grin*

Easy Homemade Pizza Crust

3/4 c. warm water about 80 degrees F
1 Tbl. olive oil
1 Tbl. brown sugar
1 tsp. Italian seasoning (avoid garlic - yeast will not rise)
1 Tbl. dry milk
2 1/4 c. Unbleached white flour
1 tsp. active dry yeast.

In Bread Machine:
Add ingredients in order in bread machine, making small indention in flower for yeast (Make sure it does not touch liquid). Set bread machine on "dough".


By Hand:
If you don't have a bread machine, mix ingredients together and kneed dough for 5 minutes. Lightly coat with olive oil and place in bowl. Let rise for 30 minutes.

Use half of dough for thin crust, and freeze the other half if need be. When finished, roll out dough on pizza pan. Poke holes in dough and coat with olive oil, garlic, Italian spices, and Parmesan cheese. Bake for 5 mins at 425 degrees. For pizzas with lots of extra toppings, bake at lower temp.

SEO Class Starts Today

While I recommend and praise this class all the time, I HIGHLY recommend jumping into this particular session. Starting today, December 6th, they are extending the training session to include more in depth information on search engine optimization, and more interactive lessons.

Why get in right now?


This could possibly be the only training session which is a longer training session with all the extra benefits, so you'll want to get started RIGHT NOW. Do not wait, because you could be missing out on some very valuable information.

Oh, and did I mention it was free? What more incentive do you need? ;)

Click Here to Register for SEO Classes

Dear Santa

Dear Santa,
Please don't forget my Yugioh Cards this year. I know I had to come back to you a second time at Walmart to remind you. But that was because last year you forgot them. I know you told me that there were a lot of things to remember and sometimes Santa forgets a thing or two. And I know your elf told me that the best thing to do was to remind my mommy and daddy over and over again so they can remind you but I thought I'd write anyway. Why did you give my mommy that funny look when I said you forgot them last year?

Please don't forget them this year. I gave my mommy a hard time even writing my Christmas list this year because I told her you probably wouldn't bring what I wanted anyway. I want other things too but I REALLY want those Yugiho Cards.



True story folks! Although yes, the letter is made up ... I thought that'd be a cute way to tell my story, lol. But OMG - I was just more than a little embarrassed when he said that. After we were there the first time he INSISTED that he HAD to go back because he forgot to tell him something and if he didn't he wouldn't bring it.

Well, after already KNOWING about the Yugiho cards I figured I'd better take him back because he has something in his head he "needs" and if Santa don't come through this year ... he may never trust him again, lol!

But the whole ... giving me a hard time with the Christmas list ... true again! He just said, it don't matter mom ... he won't bring what I want anyway!

Am I going to give him EVERYTHING on his? Probably not. But I will try and make sure those "important needs" are there this year!! LOL!

The worst part of all of this ... I don't even remember him ASKING for Yugiho cards in the first place!! LOL

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

I Love Productive Days

Don't you just love those days when everything seems to go along smoothly, and one by one all the items on your To-do list disappear? Today is one of those days. While I'm starting to feel a bit tired (thank the kids for passing along their cold to me), things are still getting checked off. I feel good!

Despite the fact I almost had a major crises on my hands this morning, WAHM-Articles has been successfully handed over to someone else. Blame it on the fact I was trying to get the kids ready for school, or that I haven't had any cappuccino in days (because of the cold).....regardless, I changed the database password without even thinking it was going to cause problems. Now I'm no script expert, but this one I should have known. For a php script to work right, it's got to access the database. When you set up something like a directory or message board, you set it up with the password. Well DUH when I changed the password the site couldn't find the database, thus casing one big error. I would have been in a panic either way, but more so since the site was officially sold and we had money in hand. CRAP!!!! Talk about total panic....because I had to rush the kids off to school before I could fix it, I didn't even notice my 6yr old had walked out the door with only a jacket on instead of his winter coat. Nice mom, real nice.

So after I fixed the site complete with the new password (which wasn't as big of deal as I thought), I moved on to the next item on my list. A quiz for one of my classes. 98%, woo hoo! Go me! Only one more next Tuesday, and that class is in the bag. Add those credits towards my degree, hurray!

Once I finished my short happy dance and gave myself praise for the awesome grade, I moved on to the scrapbooking site which I've been working on non-stop for the last month and a half. While I've already officially launched the site, I'm still adding new pages. More specifically, product information pages. This has been somewhat of a challenge because I'm not exactly a scrapbooking expert. The pages are still lacking some content, but they are getting there. Once I get a handful up, I'll most likely go back and work through them, increasing their search engine rankings. I believe I've done a good job with them as of right now, but they still need more content. Either way, I was happy to get another new page done today. It might seem odd to do a Christmas page this late, but with this particular market I think the real sales are going to come at the end of December into early January, and possibly all year round.

The last item on my list is more class work, which I'm dreading. The program is due on Thursday and it appears to be close to done. I say "appears" because while the program is written and only has a few errors which need fixed, it might be a whole different story once I try to actually run it. I've been through this before - it compiles and looks fantastic, then I spend several hours trying to get it to do what it's suppose to do. It does feel good to know I'm at least this far on it though, with a few more days left to turn it in.

The final class I have work to do in still is Statistics, and that I'm REALLY not looking forward to. I thought this class was going to be decent, but it's driving me absolutely crazy. I hate it. I don't want to deal with it any more! Next week is the final, and at this point I'm just hoping I pass. :(

Well I suppose, off I go to get homework done and finish up my list!

Monday, December 04, 2006

I'm Not Laughing Now

A few days ago I was here ranting about how crazy Anita (and others) were for going shopping on Black Friday. I laughed and said you'd never catch me dead out on Black Friday, and thinking about how smart I was for going shopping on Thanksgiving when there was NOONE at Walmart. I had to go to Walmart today to kill some time while I had some work done to my car (a whole other rant)......and I'm not laughing anymore.

I got my daughter a Doodle Bear (well kinda, it's actually a "Doodle Pet") when we went shopping on Thanksgiving for somewhere around $12 I think. I was sly and slipped it under the cart, so she never saw it. I was really wanting the actual bear, but it was almost $20 I believe, so I went for the smaller pet. It had a cute cloth case with it too, so I thought it was worth just as much as the bear and cost less. While in Walmart today, I see jumbo sized Doodle Bears for only $10!!!! Can we say moron? Oh, I was mad. Plus of course other hot deals and continuing specials were still all over the store....only sold out. Grrr. So maybe I wasn't so smart not getting a piece of the action and buying some uber cheap stuff when I could.

I can't say I did all that bad though. The majority of items I've gotten over the past several months, and my "main" shopping trip only cost $50. Still, I'm now kicking myself in the butt for not being "the fool" and shopping on Black Friday. :(