Thursday, March 6, 2008

Your input is requested

While I was at Monica's, of course our conversation turned to blogging a couple of times. I haven't really understood the whole blog subscription thing, so that entailed part of our discussion. Monica set me up so that readers can subscribe by e-mail or feed reader, so that's cool. But what I want to know is how many of you use such a service, and what do you like about it? I'm considering signing up, especially for blogs that may not update regularly. If you subscribe to a blog, do you keep it on your visible blogroll? Which service do you use and why? That would be such helpful information! Thank you.

Also, yesterday I asked for ideas on how to organize and store photos, and would really like to receive some more inspiration. Would you be willing to share what works for you in that regard?

20 comments:

Leanne said...

This has really worked for us...and as you know, I take TONS of pictures. I do scrapbook, but am only on my 4th scrapbook after 5 years of marriage and 3 children (almost)....
I download my pictures into organized files on my computer by year and month (and sometimes more specific categories-- birthdays, trips, etc). Then about once a month we save all of our photos onto a SanDisk Cruzer® Micro 4GB. They are about $40.00. You can find out more about them at www.sandisk.com.
Then we keep that disk locked in a fire safety box/safe.
(boy...I sound compulsive). I try to limit actual paper photos also to those I know I want to scrapbook or frame...otherwise, I don't see the point in keeping them around.
Hope that helps!
Leanne

Marie said...

I use bloglines to keep me updated on the blogs I read. I used to just keep them bookmarked and try to read them all each day, but there was just too many of them to do that, so I went to bloglines, and now whenever one of the blogs I read is updated it lets me know and I can click on it and see.
As far as pictures go, I take lots and lots of pictures. I keep them in a CD organizer and they are organized by event, year, or catagory (i.e. wedding, Christmas, mom's 75th birthday, our vacation to Philly, etc). I guess I really should do like the last poster and put them in a fire safe box, I certainly could get more on the cds then I have, but it makes retreiving them much easier, but for safety reasons I guess I could make an additional copy to put in the fire safe. After all, cds are extremely cheap! I buy them by the 100s for next to nothing, so having an extra copy even if it is not as organized as the one in the cd case wouldn't hurt!

Frances said...

I read your blog posts (and many, many others) via Bloglines. Bloglines was the first feed reader I discovered (thanks to a Web 2.0 learning program at my work), but I'm sure Google Reader and the others work well, too. I love that my reader shows me all the new posts - that way I don't miss any (unless the RSS feeds act up) and I don't waste time visiting blogs that haven't been updated. I often use the "keep as new" feature to temporarily save posts I want to read again later or follow up on.

As I new blogger I haven't yet decided what I'm going to do for a blogroll. If I do end up creating one, I will probably only put my "tried and true" blogs on it - I often subscribe to interesting blogs I see (on others' blogrolls, etc.) and end up unsubscribing after a couple week when they don't sustain my interest. I need to limit my subscriptions or I'd spend hours upon hours reading posts each day.

"With All That I've Been Given" is a winner on my list! :)

The Stepford Wife said...

I don't use a service to read blogs... I like hitting everybody's personal blog. Perhaps I should, since it takes a lot of work to read everybody's blog individually... :D

Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

I use Bloglines (that is how I read yours!).

It is the only way I can keep up with as many blogs as I enjoy.

Once every few months, I will go through and delete those that I find I'm not reading.

Kimmers said...

I also use bloglines. We store our phots in files on our computer and then back them up at Shutterfly.
I am so glad that you got to visit your sister...I wish I had a sister!

Steve & Molly said...

Hi Carrie,
I do almost exactly like Leanne with photos. We have them organized in files on the computer by year, month and activity also. Because we have 4 children we also go as far as to separate photos into categories with one for each child, a family file, and a together file for those pics that only have part of the family. We have files for Steve's and my sides of the family, church/ministry pics, etc. It really helps to take the time to file them because then you can go right to the picture that you want based on the category. We save ours on an external hard drive for safety reasons, too. But here it is for robbery reasons rather than fire. We live in a cement house, so fire is not a very big risk, but robberies are big here and if someone steals the computer without pictures backed up then we are stuck! Everytime we go out of town we make sure they are backed up and in a safe place first. I only print off pics that I know I will scrapbook or frame. It really saves on the storage space!

Thanks for asking the bloglines question. I am interested in reading the feedback, as I find I am spending more time than I should checking blogs. I am looking for a new method to save time but still be able to read all the updates I enjoy.

mer said...

I've been using Bloglines for about 6 weeks, and I love it. It took quite a bit of time to get all my feeds added, but it has cut my computer time in half. No more surfing around clicking all my links to see who's updated.

I kept all my links in my Blogroll too. Just because I wanted others to be able to have access to the blogs I love. I have many more in my Blogline feeds than I do on my blogroll though!

I actually tried Google reader before Bloglines, but for some reason, it kicks me out every time I try to set up an account. Bloglines works for me!

Katie said...

Hey Carrie!

I finally have my computer back! My brother fixed the one we had and it's working better than ever! Anyway, don't have much time, but wanted to say hello.

Love the pics from your trips to your sister's! I look forward to catching up on your posting and post my own when I have time.

As far as blog subscriptions and such, I've heard of Bloglines but don't currently know much about it. I've heard lots of good things about it though in various places.

Ok...hope you are doing well!
~Katie

Heather of Troy said...

Google Reader just got launched and I love it! It's so easy to subscribe to a new blog. I'm a Gmail person anyway so I sign on to check my mail, hit "reader" and I see all my updated blogs. I link to blogs of anyone that I know personally and I subscribe to a few more. I have them divided on my site as "Family" "Friends" and "Favorites." The Favorites is where I would add people I don't personally know but that's a pretty short list because I don't like recommending people I don't necessarily know and I dont' spend a ton of time reading those blogs anyway.

As for photos, Carrie, I'm with you! I lost 3 years of photos in a computer crash last year. I hadn't backed things up in two years because my DVD drive had broken the year before and I lived in Ukraine and back then flash drives were really expensive for the larger GB ones. After the crash I vowed I would start printing pictures but I still have boxes of pictures from high school, college, and mission trips that I've yet to do anything with. Since I've been cleaning out so much lately I've gone through a few of them and eliminated duplicates. Remember how stores used to do "double prints" for free?

Anyway, I haven't yet heard a suggestion on your post that I really like. (no offense to anyone intended, please!) I think my sister prints the best photos of her girls and has separate albums for their first year. I have no idea after that. I know she's also made DVD slideshows for their birthdays. But she's talented like that!

I just don't think that storing pictures on a flash drive you'll ever do anything with it. You've just got to narrow it down to the best ones and print some. I don't know...I"m just about to have my first baby and I'm a photo fanatic.

Lauren@Baseballs&Bows said...

I use Bloglines. I don't actually read the posts on the Bloglines site; instead, I click to the actual blog (I like to see everyone's idividual sites). BUT, Bloglines does save time because I don't have to check blogs that aren't updated.

Hope this helps!

Susan said...

Wow, I am with you Carrie. I didn'T know how the blog subscriptions worked. But reading everyone's comment, I think I may do that if it is cutting out time.

Also, I am the poor person who lost 3 years of photo due to a computer crash. Yikes. I need to back up my photos. However, I do have everything on Snapfish too.

Amy said...

I use Feed Reader and find it easiest for me to use. I actually read a lot of blogs and this helps save me a lot of time. It is very easy to subscribe to blogs and many times I can just input the web address after clicking, "New" and adding them to my feed. Other times you look for that universal sign in orange and white and it will direct you on how to subscribe.

I have mine categorized by crafters, money savers, mommy blogs, and foodies. These are the main categories that read so it organizes them so I can just quickly click through a load of crafts, a load of money-saving ideas, and a load of recipes.

I am reading you right now through my feed :) How cool is that?

Leah in Iowa said...

I use BlogLines. You can set it to show only a few lines of your post, and then your readers will have to go to your blog to read the rest, if you're a traffic junkie. =)

Lady in Waiting said...

Bloglines is SUPER!!!!

Anonymous said...

HI Carrie:

I don't know anythng about bloglines or feed readers or anything like that, :), but I did want to respond to your photo dilemna.
Have you considered using photo boxes? I am in the process of cleaning out my albums and filing them in photo boxes, by year, event, etc. I think Monica did this a year or so ago and I've been intending to do it and am finally getting around to it. Of course, there are albums I don't want to disrupt...those with themes or speical events, etc. (like weddings, trips, etc.) But with all the photos I have, I HAD to do something, so that's what I'm doing. Hope that helps!

Love you, Grandma

Ewokgirl said...

I have a subscription with Google Reader, but I rarely use it. I have my favorite blogs that I actually go to every day. Every once in a great while, I'll remember to look at my reader and see a bunch of other blogs that I subscribed to but had forgotten about.

As for photo organization, I have nothing for you. I have nearly 10 years of photos that are just shoved in a drawer or are still on a disk somewhere.

Jamie said...

Hi Carrie, I use Google Reader...I just started not too long ago but I think it is great! It definitely saves me time but still lets me enjoy looking at some of my favorite blogs! I still like to click on the individual blogs though! I think it is great because it is not a priority for me to read a lot of blogs during my day...it is just something fun to do with a few spare minutes. This allows me to do that without wasting a lot of time!

Jamie said...

Hi Carrie, I use Google Reader...I just started not too long ago but I think it is great! It definitely saves me time but still lets me enjoy looking at some of my favorite blogs! I still like to click on the individual blogs though! I think it is great because it is not a priority for me to read a lot of blogs during my day...it is just something fun to do with a few spare minutes. This allows me to do that without wasting a lot of time!

Megan D. Crow said...

I love Google Reader. It's so great for reading blogs. And you can organize them by folders (ie friends, crafting blogs, simple living blogs, etc.).

You can also 'tag' items to save for later (ie I have tags for recipes, gift ideas, craft projects, etc.) and then I can search through my saved/tagged posts later to find a project/idea I need.

And perhaps the best part is you can 'Share' items. This means when you see a post you really like and think others would enjoy, you can just click 'Share.' Google Reader automatically creates a new 'webpage' with all your shared blog posts on it & people can subscribe to it too - just as they do with you blog.

For example, here is my Shared Item:
http://www.google.com/reader/shared/01016942889185368011

I also have a feed of my shared items as a side bar on my blog for readers to see.

Also - an easy way to 'subscribe' to blogs is on the top of most browsers - where the site address is (ie megancrow.wordpress.com) there is a little Orange symbol (this means there is an RSS Feed) and you can click on it and choose to add it to your Bloglines, Google Reader, etc. So it makes for easy subscribing!

Hope this all makes sense - just email me if you have any questions about what I said :)