Without social media I…

Without social media where would I be…. that is a good question. Probably sitting on my couch watching horrible reality based TV shows with a box of bon-bons in my lap. Okay… that’s a lie because we all know that I don’t like reality shows. It’s more likely that I’d have my face buried in a book!

Without social media I would be left behind the times and not part of the cool crowd.

cool crowd

The Cool Crowd

Without social media I would have never known that someone could karaoke Ice, Ice, Baby so well! I mean Elena can belt it out like no other…. and she can do it all by memory!

Gleek Retreat Karaoke

Gleek Retreat Karaoke

Without social media I wouldn’t have started on a my journey to a new career for myself. My eyes wouldn’t have been opened to all the incredible opportunities that are out there in the world, all that there is to learn, and all the great people who are willing to help you out.

Without social media I wouldn’t have met an incredible woman. One who is exactly the same online as she is in person. One who is sweet, open, honest, and downright hilarious. I mean have you read her blog???

Empress and I

The Empress and I

Without social media I’d probably be really bored.

Without social media I would have never found Pinterest. Life without Pinterest… I shudder to think of it!

Without social media I would have never found wonderful recipes and been able to share them with everyone.

Without social media I wouldn’t have met some incredible women from right here in the state of Michigan.

BBC Michigan Bloggers

Awesome Michigan Bloggers

Without social media I wouldn’t have been able to state my case and then get an iPhone as a result!

Without social media I wouldn’t have started writing fiction again or have known about #NaNoWriMo.

Without social media I would not have met some of the best friends ever. Even though I haven’t met the majority of them in person I am honored to call them friends. When you need a shoulder to cry on, someone to vent to, or help with a fashion crisis they’re always there for you. And once in a while you meet that one person that you really connect with and you become fast friends. Someone you trust and look forward to talking to. Someone who has earned the title of a best friend.

What about you? What would you been doing without social media? How would your life be different?

Mama’s Losin’ It

My first #BlogBoycottDay!

I have to tell you all that I am really excited to be co-hosting with the incredible Liz from A Belle, a Bean, & a Chicago Dog for #BlogBoycottDay!

During the last #BlogBoycottDay Liz said that she was ready to give it up and asked if anyone was interested in taking it over! I quickly raised my hand and here I am!


So what is #BlogBoycottDay you ask? Well, it’s a day dedicated to social media! Spend your day Tweeting and engaging with your community instead of writing posts for your blog or reading and commenting on others. Reach out to all those people who you haven’t spoken with in a while or that one person you’ve always wanted to talk to.

#BlogBoycottDay is the 2nd Friday every month and all you have to do is link up!

In order to find others who are taking part in the boycott, include your Twitter handle in the Linky below.  Also, grab the code for the button from my sidebar over there on the right —>

I broke up with Klout

I tweeted, retweeted, engaged, and so on.

Every day I would check the numbers…. Were they higher, lower, or was I maintaining the status quo?

I’d check for awesome perks and see what I qualified for (we all did/do it).

And then it all changed. A simple algorithm (alright… algorithms aren’t simple I know that) to make it so that the scores were more accurate and it was said that scores would stay the same of go up. Ahhh…. Not so simple my friends… not at all.

In fact, the truth is that most of us saw a huge drop, upwards of 10 -12 points. And some even saw two of their accounts move to within a number or two of each other.

This is what I did. I broke up with Klout. I kicked them to the curb.

Why? Well, here’s the thing. Blogging isn’t about numbers, keeping up with the Jones’, or what cool stuff you can get for free. At least it isn’t for me. I write because I want to share, learn, grow, because I like writing, and well… it connected me to a large group of people that I consider friends.

I’m not a power blogger or tweeter and while I engage with my friends (community) daily I do it because I want to not because I need to increase a score or anything like that.

I love chatting with everyone, sharing information with them and learning from what they share with me. We are all friends and we are there to support one another, cheer each other on, and be there when a shoulder to cry on is needed. That is what engaging with my community is all about.

I am happy to say that I have not looked at my Klout score since the end of October and honestly…. I don’t care what it is.

I do however like the idea of giving out the +K because if you do something that influences me then it’s kind of cool that I can let you and others know about that. So, I will continue to do that but it will be in the form of #ImaginaryKlout.

#ImaginaryKlout is more fun because I can pick and choose the topic where as Klout only lets me pick from what they think you’re influential about. How silly is that?

Imaginary Klout

Want some #ImaginaryKlout? Just let me know and you can snag my awesome image!

Do you check your Klout score still? What do you think about the new changes that Klout has implemented?

How to unplug from social media…. or why I didn’t post Monday.

Every so often it’s nice to unplug from social media, blogging, and the internet in general. Then there are the times that we are forced to disconnect whether we want to or not and this is exactly what happened to me this past weekend.

Every so often throughout the summer we head up to the thumb region of Michigan where my parents spend their summer and we camp for the weekend with them. I love spending time up there with them relaxing and watching them interact with my kids (it’s amazing what they let them get away with). It really is a relaxing place to go since there isn’t a lot to do there and the closest city is about 45 minutes away.

I bet you’re wondering what this has to do with unplugging from social media and the internet. Well, this area of Michigan does not have 3G service and the service that I do get on my iPhone is so bad that I can barely use Tweetdeck, email, Instagram, or anything that requires data connection. Let me put it this way…. I posted 2 pictures on Instagram this weekend and one of them took me 2 days to successfully post! 2 days people! Checking my email was a challenge and half the time it wouldn’t pull in the new messages.

So because of the horrible service up there I didn’t post on Monday. I actually pondered it and was thinking that I could do it through my phone. But then as the weekend progressed and I fought to post a picture on Instagram I quickly lost faith that I’d be able to write a post with pictures and have it actually work for me.

What I did instead was use my phone as a camera for the rest of the weekend and was able to capture a few moments that are those that fond memories are made of.

Storm coming in off of Saginaw Bay

There was a storm coming in off of Saginaw Bay & Lake Huron that you could hear for at least an hour before the rain actually reached us. As a matter of fact Andrew and I were heading down to the channel to check it out and my step mom told me to not get caught by the rain and to hurry. So as you can guess we got caught in the rain the moment we got down there.

Playing with grandma

In between down pours Andrew and grandma played in the puddles.

Making cookies with grandma

And when the rain got really bad we went inside and the kids made chocolate chip cookies with grandma. This was the first time that Andrew got to help bake and he loved rolling the cookies into the ball shape with help from his sister.

riding his broom

Andrew has this new fascination with brooms and loves to play with them. So he quickly set aside his toys and grabbed the broom that my parents keep outside to sweep off the deck with and claimed it for his own. It became his new ride around the campground after he swept the road.

Meeting Ronald McDonald

Then we met a new friend, Ronald McDonald, and an old dear one, free wifi. I don’t know who enjoyed breakfast more… Andrew or I! I was over the top with joy with the fact that I could quickly check Instagram (I think I have a slight addiction)!

So if you’re in need of unplugging and really getting away for a while then find a place where there is crappy cell phone signal and no internet access. It’ll be hard that first day or so as you beg your phone to just let you upload one picture or send one tweet but eventually you’ll come to terms with it and sit back and enjoy the simple things.

How do you unplug? Do you ever do it?

I’m also linking up with Taming Insanity for iPhone Photo Phun since I took all these pics with my awesome iPhone!

Taming Insanity

A New Beginning

Last weekend I went to Bloogy Bootcamp in Chicago and it was one of the best experiences that I’ve had this year when it comes to blogging and social media. I’m still trying to process everything I’ve learned, follow up with all the wonderful people I had met, and narrow down the three things I’m going to focus on.

There are few things that Tiffany said between speakers that has really been sticking with me this past week.

  • Only pick 3 things to work on after the conference.
  • You’ll do really well on those 3 things.
  • Where you put your attention you get results.

So why is it that those things are sticking with me? Well, it’s because I have this issue with wanting to help here or there, joining various causes, and when it comes down to it spreading my self way to thin. I end up overwhelmed and not able to give things the attention that they deserve and then I end up letting myself and others down. This isn’t fair to anyone involved.

I want to be able to make an impact and inspire people through my blog. I want it to be well known and like throughout the blogosphere. There are so many things that I want, but without focus and starting here at home I won’t be able to reach any of those things.

I’ve cleared my plate.

From now on my focus needs to be on this blog, my social media presence, and the goals that I want to obtain in the next few months. That alone is a lot of work considering that I work full time, have four children, and a husband who owns his own business and is always busy.

For now I have some ideas of where I want to start and what I need to do.

Tomorrow starts a new beginning.


Social Media as a Career

Goals. We all have them, right?

Well today we’re going to discuss my blogging goals for the Summer Blog Social that is being hosted by Liz from a belle, a bean, and a chicago dog and Jessica from Four Plus an Angel.

So there’s a specific prompt….

What are your overriding goals for your blog and social media presence? How have those goals evolved over time?

I can most certainly tell you that when I started out just over a year ago I had no goals. None. I didn’t really have a clue what I was doing and just hoping for the best. And I learned a great deal! Wow… I seriously couldn’t believe how much there was to this blogging thing. Numbers, stats, commenting, Google Analytics, mingling, joining groups, reviews, giveaways… the list seemed endless of all the things that you could take into account where blogging is concerned so many directions that you could go with it all. But now that I look back what it comes down to is what you really want to do with your blog, where you want to take it, and most importantly having fun with what you decide to do.

Alright, my goals.

So I love this blogging & social media thing. Being able to meet new people and interact with them on a daily basis is great. I’ve met so many people and it amazes me everyday how helping and generous they all are with their time and knowledge. Not that long ago I decided that social media is something that I would love to be able to do all the time and some day I want to be doing this for a living. Blogging & social media as my official career is my goal.

Is it a lofty goal? Maybe, but I think that it is one that is definitely obtainable. I just need to get pointed in the right direction and with help I believe that I can make it happen.

The first couple things that I am doing to get closer to that is increase my content ensuring that it’s good content too. Next on the list is getting more organized when it comes to blogging and my posting schedule. Easy peasy! I’ve been doing it for almost a week now! Yay me!

So there you have friends, my goal. Just one to make it easy on myself.

What do you think? Any suggestions on where or how to start?