Guess who’s back, back again…

Hi guys, it’s been awhile. Like a long while. So much has changed since my last blog post. The biggest – I got married! And also our honeymoon to Hawaii, which is totally worth mentioning. It’s hard to believe that we’ve been married for almost 9 months already. I’ve been  wanting to get back into blogging so bad for awhile now, but just haven’t seemed to have the time or when I do have the time I have so many things to write about I can’t think of anything to write, that happens to other people too, right!? I’m just so sad that I went from writing posts that were viewed over 150,000 times a year by people from over 125 countries to not blogging a single post in 5 months. Anyways I feel a change coming on, like a whole blog overhaul. New design. New name. New everything. I want to really focus on blogging about  life, what’s important to me, and just random thoughts. I plan to steer clear of beauty reviews unless it’s something really great. I know how annoying post after post of beauty reviews can be, so sorry about that. So I hope everyone is as excited as me about this, and will keep me accountable for keeping up with posting! Hopefully many new posts coming soon, stay tuned!

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Tractor of the Month.

You ever have those days where you go to sit down and blog, but can’t think of a single thing to write about no matter how hard you try? Well that’s been me this week. I don’t know maybe it’s because I’ve had a lot going on and haven’t had the time to do much in blogland. Or maybe because I’m still in shock that my post So God Made a Farmer’s Wife has had 68,000+ views in the 5 days that it has been published. I know that’s not much to many bloggers but to me it’s a big deal!

But anyways…

Several months ago Kyle entered into a contest through Tom’s Agri-Diesel our of Harlan, IA. To enter the contest you had to submit a photo of a tractor you restored using Tom’s A-D/PowerMax Parts along with a brief summary about your tractor. The prize was: tractor featured in the newsletter as ‘Tractor of the Month’, picture in the Tom’s A-D calendar, and a $50 Visa gift card. We decided to submitted his 1966 John Deere 3020LP. Here’s the summary:

For my 16th birthday my dad and I went down to McCool, Mississippi to pick up this tractor. We brought it back to Iowa and restored it using a Reliance overhaul kit from Tom’s Agri-Diesel. That summer it took 1st place at the Iowa State Fair in the Restored Tractor – Original class.

We didn’t hear anything from Tom’s and actually forgot all about it until one day we we’re picking up parts and the employee mentioned seeing Kyle’s tractor in the newsletter. So that was a nice little surprise. Tom’s A-D contacted him in December to let him know he’d won and to send him the gift card and some calendars. His tractor is featured in January and since the calendar contains January 2015, it’s featured twice! Another nice surprise.

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So how about some before and after pictures? Because I know ya’ll are dying to see what it looked like before. 😉

May I present to you the ‘before’ picture. She was quite the gem, don’tcha think!?Before (2)

You’ve already seen the ‘after’ from the calendar, but here ya go anyways.
after

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!

Top 10 Posts of 2013.

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I started this blog in May. It’s been quite a journey, I’ve learn a lot and made many new friends. Hopefully 2014 will be an ever better year for blogging, and I hope to make even more friends! I’ve decided to showcase my top 10 posts of 2013.

10. I am a nurse. The perfect read after a hard day at work or a long day in nursing school.

9. We’re engaged! Thanks for all of the congratulations and well wishes!

8. Agvocates – helping or hurting the industry? This is a fairly new post but has been getting a lot of traffic. This is an important topic to me and farmers/ag bloggers everywhere. I would love to hear your input!

7. What they won’t teach you in nursing school. When you finish nursing school, pass NCLEX, and began your journey as a nurse you will more than like feel lost, confused, and scared. You’ll realize you really are not that prepared. But don’t fear, this post lists common ares in which there is lack of training and some ideas to help you calm your nerves.

6. Best Baked Potato.Ever. (Recipe Included!) Seriously, make this potato for supper tonight! You can thank me later.

5. 10 Christmas Gifts for the Rural Man in Your Life. Sometimes that rural man can be the toughest one on your list to buy from because they have everything they need and they’ll never admit to what they want, here are some foul proof ideas (good for any holiday/occasion).

4. Pass NCLEX the First Time. So you’ve finished nursing school and are about to take the NCLEX? Well this is the post for you! It will calm your nerves and help you decipher those questions.

3. Straight from the Corn State: Iowa Bloggers. This is a group I recently founded with 9 other amazing ladies from Iowa. So far it’s been going really well. It’s basically a Facebook page where we share our thoughts, posts, goals, and connect with bloggers from around the world. We would love for you to follow us or apply to be a member if you’re from Iowa! Check out the page here.

2. Real Farm Girl. I’m glad this is a popular pop. Within this new country fad going on there is a poor view about farm girls, and I feel its important to get the real image out there.

1.Sephora Favorites Super Stars. I’m not sure why this post was so popular, it was one of my earliest posts and still gets a lot of visits per day.

Feel free to share what your favorite posts of mine were or your own most popular posts!

Straight from the Corn State: Iowa Bloggers.

A new group I’ve created with some other fellow Iowa bloggers. I hope everyone will follow along. Or if you live in Iowa, apply to be a contributor or featured blogger. We’re all really excited and can’t wait to get to know everyone better!

Facebook page: www.facebook.com/cornstatebloggers

Application: https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1nTHtpnnXiQPUJPHzY0Y9CwUXTjmyRPSUnJ-cI50dByE/viewform#start=invite

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