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Too Many Books?

When someone moves, they often try to downsize and avoid carrying excess STUFF to the new home. Good idea. One thing that’s hard to let go of is books. Many of us get emotionally attached to our books.

Reading a book is such a personal experience. Each reader brings their own frame of reference to the book. Who you are, your values, your past experiences, your current emotional state, all come into play as you read the words the author put on the page.

Even books we haven’t read are hard to dump. That books holds the promise of new characters or information to discover. How can we release it unread? Rationally you can know that you aren’t ever going to read that book, but it still occupies your shelf.

It’s easier to give up a book if you think of it as a gift. Any book donated to a library or given to another reader has another chance to be read again. Even books given to charity thrift shops are a boon to someone. A future reader finds the book on the bargain shelf and cradles it in their arm as they head home to read it.

By releasing your books, you are putting them back into circulation for future readers. Keep that in mind and it becomes easier to downsize your book collection.

 
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Posted by on March 31, 2015 in Books

 

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Solivita Scenes – Central Florida

I’m trying out a site called Polyvore where you create collections. For my first “set,” I’ve combined a vintage map that the site had with some Zazzle products I created with my photos of Solivita, a Florida retirement community.

Solivita Scenes - Central Florida

 

Map wall art
onekingslane.com

Office accessory
zazzle.com

Throw pillow
zazzle.com

Framed wall art
zazzle.com

Solivita Mug
zazzle.com

 
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Posted by on March 24, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Unstable Internet – Bad News about PLACE MY PAST

Another site is disappearing. It’s one that I’d never tried out, but only discovered as it is closing. Looks like a genealogist would find it useful, so I’m sorry to see it go. It let you find locations on old maps to go with your family tree.

If you’ve been using this, there isn’t much time to rescue your information that you may have placed there.

Here’s the announcement:

“We have some important news for our Place My Past users.

One of the main datasets that we use to find locations used in your family tree is called Freebase, it’s a project run by Google that contains information from Wikipedia. Recently Google has announced that Freebase will be retired very soon. We have looked for alternative sources for this information but have not been able to find one that would provide the best experience for our users.

We are also dealing with some other internal issues that would ultimately effect the usability of the site.

Both of these issues have caused us to come to the conclusion that we need to close Place My Past. We will be closing the site on 19 March 2015. All of our members’ genealogical and personal data will be deleted on this date.

Regards

The Place My Past team

 
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Posted by on March 12, 2015 in Internet

 

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Source of Photos of Vintage Items or Crafts

I wanted some photos of vintage feedsack material and of dresses made from that fabric. Although I had the one below that I took at a quilt show, I wanted more examples of feedsack dresses and quilts and fabric.

Quilt pieces from vintage feedsacks.

Quilt pieces from vintage feedsacks.

It hadn’t occurred to me before, but as I browsed around on Etsy, I saw the perfect photos to illustrate my articles. Of course, one can’t just rip-off the photos and use them on your own articles.

I approached three Etsy sellers and politely asked if I could feature their item on my article. All three of them responded in the affirmative, giving me permission to use their photo with a link to their page.

To see how this turned out, you can see the Etsy photos on my pages called Feedsack Dresses and Tea Cup Flower Arrangements. I think they really brighten the pages up. In the past, I had permission from several eBay sellers to use photos of their auction item which happened to fit some of my pages about collectibles.

Here’s what you need to keep in mind:

  • Ask nicely and if turned down, accept that graciously
  • Keep the email granting permission (in case of future issues)
  • Place the photo on your web page with a credit telling who the photo belongs to. Link the photo to their product on Etsy.
  • Both parties benefit from this. I get a great photo to use and they get some free publicity and backlinks.
  • In the case of photos on Hubpages, you can only use 2 links to the same place. Where I used more than 2 photos from Etsy, I put them in a series with one link for the batch.
 
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Posted by on March 12, 2015 in Hubpages, Photography, photos, webpages

 

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My Favorite Tool for Screenshots

Somehow I never figured out how to get decent screenshots from my computer. It frustrated me as I really wanted to use those in tutorials on my webpages and blogs.

Then I found Awesome Screenshots and downloaded it for free. It resides on my Firefox toolbar or shows up as an option when I left-click my mouse.

1850 United States Federal Census - wrong abraham bates

1850 United States Federal Census – wrong abraham bates

What’s so awesome about Awesome Screenshots? The example above is one I used on my Finding Your Civil War Ancestor blog. It’s a screenshot of the U.S. Census from 1850.

I love being able to crop from a website, circle or box things I want to feature, then add text and arrows. It makes it very clear to your reader and looks so professional.

Did I mention that it’s FREE? You can make a donation at the site and I just might do that, as it is a tremendous tool for any blogger or online content writer or just anyone who uses the Internet.

Check it out at Awesome Screenshot.

 
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Posted by on March 10, 2015 in webpages

 

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My 1880s Silk Quilt

Over the past 40 years, I collected vintage quilts. Most of these were found at antique markets in Maryland and Pennsylvania. I haven’t added to the collection since moving to Florida.

A few months ago, I took one quilt to the Davenport Quilt show for appraisal. I opted for the quickie appraisal, not wishing to spend the $40 for the written one that would have included an estimate of value for the quilt.

The quilt appraisor with my 1880s or 1890s silk quilt.

The quilt appraisor with my 1880s or 1890s silk quilt.

Here’s what I learned about it. The pattern is a star block. It appears to have been made from a grey silk dress as there are tucks in some of the pieces. Due to the iron content used in dyes for silk, those pieces are likely to suffer some disintegration over the years. A few small pieces show this with the silk shredding. The appraiser said there is nothing that can be done to prevent this since the harm was done at the time the fabric was made.

The red parts are not silk, but linen. The backing is a paisley that looks to be of 1880s vintage.

The batting is very thin and it is probable that this was never intended for use on a bed for warmth. More likely it was for show or for a lap robe.

Rather than being quilted, it is a tied quilt with red and green ribbons. The green ones have faded to a yellow over the last 130 years, but in a few places the original color could be detected. With the red and green ribbons plus the poinsettia look of the stars, this might be a Christmas quilt.

 

 

 
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Posted by on February 18, 2015 in antiques

 

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Don’t Call Me a Spammer

I’m regularly receiving email messages from Hubpages with the gentle caution that one of my pages (called a hub there) might be spammy. I try not to feel insulted. I’m sure the site intends the note to be instructive and to steer me in the right direction as they see it.

Unfortunately, many of the pages that are causing them to turn up their nose are ones that were quite successful on Squidoo. In the past, these received a lot of traffic and yes, quite a few buyers for the Amazon products I featured.

Naturally I’m reluctant to gut a hub by removing all the links to informative pages and to useful products. Hubpages tucks the offensive pages out of sight by making them unfeatured. There they languish until I follow through on their suggestions or remove them to another site where I have more control.

Here’s part of the wording, “It’s possible that your Hub is not Featured because it contains spammy elements. Perhaps it was written for a link, or has too many unrelated or distracting products capsules. Even Hubs that appear to be high quality can be spammy. We recommend that you remove any spammy elements from your Hub.”

I admit that I have a number of hubs on topics relating to my mother’s book. Of course, when someone comes to read about feedsack dresses or having a pet badger, I naturally want to tell them they will find more about that in My Flint Hills Childhood by Gail Lee Martin.

Oops, I just spammed you, at least that’s what Hubpages considers as spam. To me, it’s a huge part of the Internet, providing easy links for readers to find more about a topic.

 
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Posted by on February 3, 2015 in Hubpages

 

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