Cozy Box Swap 2014 Reveal.

cozy box swapThis year I came up with and hosted the first annual Cozy Box Swap. Although it was pretty successful I already new ideas for next year and learn what does and doesn’t work. I am also hoping for more participants next year, around 30 signed-up this year! Since there was an odd number of participants I took two partners.

The first was Sara from Faith, Farming, & Cowboy Boots. We had already gotten to know each other over the past year from blogging and have a lot in common, so it was neat to be able to swap with her.

IMG_0263Sorry the lighting is so off in this picture, it was fine on my camera..not so much on my computer.

Wintery penguin throw blanket – Slipper socks – Yarn – Knitting Needles – Hot cocoa – Pretty ornaments

I love the items she picked out. Especially the socks…so cozy! We had Thanksgiving on Saturday and I wore them after I took my boots off and everyone loved them and wanted to know where they were from. So I’ll have to ask Sara and buy some for Christmas gifts!

My second partner was Sydney from Clot Girl. We met because of this swap and I had a great time getting to know her, it seems like we have a lot in common.

IMG_0278Pink knee high slipper socks – Heart mug – Soup mix in a mason jar – Bride magazine – Coffee – Ellen DeGeneres CD – Hot cocoa – Cozy Nights candle – Stocking with my initial Not pictured: candy canes

I’m not going to lie I was so excited about the package I started using things right away without taking a picture…whoops! I believe this is everything. The candy canes are being used as decoration so I didn’t want to take them down. I am really excited to try the chili which is my favorite cozy winter (well anytime of the year) soup! She picked out some great items! I haven’t had a chance to listen to the Ellen CD but it has to be hilarious.

Hopefully they will get their reveals up on their blogs so you will be able to see what I got them!

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12 Days of Christmas Swap.

So I’ve signed up for another swap hosted by the ladies of CG Swaps. This is the one I’ve been looking forward to all year! Can you believe it’s that time though!? So not ready for snow and cold and wind. But anyways…on to the swap…
You are paired with a partner and get to know them, then send 12 wrapped items in 1 box. Hence the 12 days of Christmas. Sign-ups end November 10th, so hurry and get signed up! 🙂

Swapoween Reveal.

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Recently I participated in another swap by CG Swaps, this one was their Swapoween swap. It was a bunch of fun, and great because I love decorating for Halloween. I was paired with Beth from Printcess & Living a Goddess Life who happens to be a host of the swap. She put together a really awesome and thoughtful box.

20140929_095450•Decal •Halloween reflective stickers •Halloween themed napkins •Fall themed towel •Spider web socks •A bunch of Halloween recipes •Halloween grow capsules •Halloween themed nail polish •Halloween cupcake baking set •Pumpkin spiced scented candle •Glittery skull with light up eyes •Pumpkin lantern •Card •Rubber band purse •Halloween mug •Skeleton hand oven mitt •Fall themed cookie cutters •Set of white candles that ‘bleed’ red when lit

Like I said Beth did a great job of picking out items, she really spoiled me!

Why I Don’t Like Your Blog.

OK, so that title sounded a little harsh, I just wanted to get your attention. More accurately it should be titled ‘what frustrates me about your blog’, ‘what your blog is missing’, or ‘why I won’t read your blog’. And it’s not because of you, it’s your blog.

1. No social media links. There has been many times where I have found a blog that I would love to follow but it was on a different site (blogger, etc.) that had no way for me to follow. I don’t use Google Friend Connect, but I do use Facebook, Bloglovin, and follow by email. I feel everyone should have the links somewhere on their page. Sure, I could look it up on Facebook or Bloglovin but I’m not going to.

2. No about me page. I like to learn about the blogger, it makes me feel more connected. It also helps me to get a better understanding of who the blogger is, what they stand for, and their background. It makes us like besties.

3. No search bar. Two main reasons I hate when blogs don’t have a search bar: 1. I’m at your blog because of Pinterest and they just linked to your blog not the actual post, I want to search your blog for the project I’m looking for. I’m not going to scroll through 6 years of posts. 2. If I like a topic you’re writing about and want to search for more info/similar posts I can’t. Bummer.

4. No picture. I like to see who I’m reading about. This goes along with number 2. And it makes me feel like you’re not some creepy guy posing as a 20-something lady.

5. No contact information. Kind of goes along with number 1. If I have a question, etc. and want to be able to email you privately, I feel I should be able too. Either by an email or a contact form.

6. Having to subscribe to post a comment. This is something I’ve noticed on some blogger blogs. You have to subscribe to the RSS feed in order to comment. Well this somewhat goes with number 1 also. I have a different blog platform and follow non-wordpress blogs via Facebook, Bloglovin, or email. I don’t want to subscribe to a RSS feed to comment. I should be able to comment without following you anyways.

7. Captcha! I’ll give you guys a break on this one, but still it annoys me :). This is one of the main reasons I chose WordPress over Blogger. I hate those Captcha! (word verification) widgets to prove I’m human and not a robot. It’s just seems like such a waste of time to me, WordPress just sorts any spam comments into a separate folder (like your email), much more simple and not so annoying.

8. Autoplaying videos and music (background music). Not a huge deal because usually my computer is muted. But I am usually multitasking and have 93857 tabs open (I’m not the only one, right? Especially on Pinterest…) and if I want to use audio on a different tab I will x out of your blog because the music (if I can easily turn off the video/song I might not x out). Seriously, if I want to watch or listen to something I’ll click on it, promise! As far as background music goes – this isn’t MySpace I don’t want to hear it. Maybe just have a sound bar on the side so I can click play, but that’s it.

9. Overdone with Ads. I have no problems with ads on a blog but when they are everywhere taking up 75% of the blog I’m no longer interested in your content. And please no pop-ups (including the ads that popout when you put your mouse over them).

10. Too Hard to Read. For the most part I don’t care what your blog looks like. Including color, patterns, schemes, fonts, etc. My problem is when it’s near impossible to see the content due to the color, design, template, etc. You know what I mean? Like when I can barely decipher the text because of the style (cursive, etc.) or the background color and text color are too close and it’s hard to read.

blogsHow do you feel about this list? What are your like, dislikes, must-haves of a blog? Leave it in the comments below! Don’t hesitate to contact me with any questions you may have about your blog, I’ll do my best to answer them!

Agvocates – helping or hurting the industry?

Yesterday on a fellow blogger’s Facebook page, The Farmer’s Wifee, she brought up this question. She stated that during the last week or so she had heard from several sources that ‘agvocates’ are doing more harm than good. My response to this question is as follows:

As a fellow agvocate I feel we are important, but I can see how sometimes we hurt the industries. We need to let people know the facts, we need to support ag, and we need to support each other. Instead of posts bashing Carrie Underwood, HSUS, Peta, etc. we need to have post with facts & reliable sources to back us up showing that they are doing the harm. We want people to listen to us but we can not force them. It’s OK if someone likes Carrie Underwood, we don’t need to attack them. Because seriously Carrie Underwood is not that great of a threat to the ag industry. Yes, she donated money to HSUS, but still. I’m using CU because this has been a hot topic lately, or at least on my feeds. And sometimes we have to realize someone is going to have their opinion and we aren’t going to change it no matter how much we yell, scream, stomp our feet, or type. Because I see it a lot – bloggers acting like 2 year olds demanding everyone agree with their opinion. I know many people have poor attitudes and opinions towards agriculture and we just need to do the best we can to inform the public about the truth and importance of agriculture. Mainly, we just need to stay professional.

How do you feel about this question and my answer? How do you feel about agvocates? And as she asked on her blog; How are we doing? Have you learned anything from us? Have we taught you anything? Have we changed your minds on anything? Do we show a positive face to agriculture? I would love to hear from anyone and everyone about their point of view of the issues facing agriculture, including agvocates.