Archive for the ‘Articles’ Category

or not – Featured Post Update

February 28, 2011 9 comments

Featured Post, RandomBlog2011 Challenge, PostADay2011, PostAWeek2011, QondioWell, it seems that my Featured Post – How it all started got someone’s attention at the online magazine. There is nothing bugging me today! 🙂

They were nice enough to give my rant a mention in one of their own updates to members.

There are things about Qondio that need improvement, and we don’t mind people posting rants (such as this one),

Yes, the name of the online magazine is Qondio.

They took notice and I’m pleased with the recent changes they’ve made to the site which encourages members to screen the articles and have them published in a timely manner.

Just to make sure that it really was working I decided to screen some articles this morning but there was only one. It was published quickly and there were no others to screen.

However, I checked back and a new one had been added. I screened this article and I was happy to see that it received 9 screenings and was published within an hour of the member submitting it. Much better than what was happening before.

I’m looking forward to seeing what other improvements they will have when Qondio V3.0 is released.

I would also like to thank Qondio because if it wasn’t for what was going on there I may have never started this blog. When I joined the challenge I wrote an article for Qondio encouraging others to start their own blog and join the WordPress Challenge.

One member did join me in the challenge and that is Barb19 – Passionate About Pets. Check out her latest post.

Following the recent Weekly Photo Challenge – Refuge, and my entry, I thought you might be interested in the whole story, together with progress photographs of the little rescued baby koala – and the happy ending!

There is nothing bugging me today!


p.s. If you haven’t already done so, check out the RandomBlog2011 Challenge.

Quote for today

Correction does much, but encouragement does more.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying

or not – Thinking of Old Neighbourhoods Makes Me Smile

January 4, 2011 3 comments

It’s time for one of my “or not” postings.

I belong to Qondio, which is an online magazine. Every week they suggest a theme and ask the members to write about it. This week’s was Neighbourhoods.  Here is my contribution which received some great reviews.

Neighbourhoods – Aren’t They Great!

It was December 1990, I had just moved into my house the previous week when we were hit with a snowstorm and the city was blanketed with snow. On moving day it was so nice we were standing in the driveway enjoying a nice cold beer after moving all my belongings into the house

I had dinner with my parents on the Saturday evening and asked my dad if I could borrow his snowblower. He hemmed and hawed, and said leave it that he would come by and do it for me after church Sunday morning. The real reason, he didn’t think that I, being female, could handle the snowblower.

I wasn’t going to argue with him, so I said I would see him in the morning.

After spending most of the day and evening at my parents home, with the snow still falling, I had no idea what to expect when I got home. Arriving about 9:00pm I found the most beautiful thing, my driveway had been plowed!

I had only moved in the previous week and with it being winter you don’t see too many people outside. I had not met any of the neighbours but when I finally did I asked if they knew who was going around plowing the driveways. They either didn’t know or were not going to admit to it.

My next door neighbours, who I got to know really well, would always mow my front lawn when they did their’s. Most of the time it was the daughter who mowed the lawn. They would then tell me to just borrow their lawnmower to mow my backyard. Whenever I mentioned that I should really buy a lawnmower, they would say what for, you can just keep using ours. They wouldn’t even let me pay for the gas I used. They were such great neighbours!

I lived in that neighbourhood for 8 years and it was wonderful, living in a community where everyone looked out for each other and helped each other out.

Contributed by classyrose. Published on January 3, 2011, at 11:02 PM UTC.

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p.s. You will have to visit the Qondio site if you would like to read the reviews.

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© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying

or not – Reach Out and Touch a Soldier

December 30, 2010 8 comments

It’s the holidays so I’m continuing with another “or not” posting.

Reach Out and Touch a Soldier Overseas

Earlier this year a member published an article on performing Random Acts of Kindness.

This is the perfect time of year to remind you of it and urge you to perform a Random Act of Kindness.

Reaching out and sending a note to our soldiers overseas is just one of those acts you can easily perform from the comfort of your own home. How simple is that?

So please, go visit:

or on FaceBook at:

Adopt A Soldier

and send a note or card to a soldier overseas.

The site also has listings for Marines, Sailors, Airmen and the Coast Guard.

If you haven’t performed a Random Act of Kindness in a while, how about doing it now.

I bet it will give you a good feeling reaching out and touching someone.

Happy New Year everyone!

NOTE: Don’t let the .com worry you, the organization was registered as non-profit and you can read it all in their history.

History of

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© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying

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or not – Random Acts of Kindness

December 27, 2010 5 comments

Being as it’s still the holiday season, I thought I would continue with another “or not” posting and remind you that there are some who could use some help, kindness and friendship at this time of year.

This was originally posted in October 2010.

Random Acts of Kindness

By Rosemary Bell

The week November 8 – 14 in 2010 is designated World Kindness Week.

This is observed in communities all around the world and can help to bring a community together.

It’s an opportunity for people to perform a small act of kindness for someone for absolutely no reason at all. Some have been known to print up business cards with a Pay It Forward message asking them to return the kindness to someone else that day. Some communities also offer posters that can be posted in your community, office or apartment building to spread the message.

There are plenty of acts you can do for strangers that won’t cost you a thing. Some of them are:

– Let someone into line with fewer items than you at the store
– Open and hold a door for someone
– Help someone obviously struggling with a heavy load
– Carry groceries to the car and return the cart for a parent with a child, or a senior etc
– Safely assist someone in need of roadside help
– Let someone into the line of traffic
– If you see someone who has locked themselves out of their car, offer to make a phone call for them
– Give up your seat on the bus for someone who needs to sit
– Pump gas for someone at self-serve
– Thank a police officer/firefighter and stop to consider what would happen to our community without them

Some ideas you can do for family, friends or neighbours:

– Invite someone to dinner who is alone or on their own
– Visit a shut-in, elderly friend, or someone who is sick
– Offer a ride to someone to appointment, shopping etc
– Offer your services of childcare to allow a new mother some personal time
– Take the garbage out for your neighbour
– Help rake your neighbour’s leaves
– Offer to fix or repair items for someone who doesn’t have the skill set to do it themselves

Speaking from experience, there is one act of kindness I know would be really appreciated. If you know someone who spends all their time (24/7) looking after a sick family member, offer them some of your time. Let them know that you will take over for the day or evening. Being a caregiver 24/7 can be quite stressful and a little time off does wonders for the mind knowing that someone responsible is looking after their loved one.

For more information you can check out:

The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation

On Facebook

What acts of kindness can or have you performed?

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© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying

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or not – Some Favourite Christmas Songs

December 22, 2010 Leave a comment

It’s the time of year when we should be feeling happy and spending good times with family and friends.  I’m hoping this will bring some good memories to mind. Enjoy!

Christmas Songs – Early Years, Later Years & Traditional Christmas Carols

By Rosemary Bell

It’s the holidays and you’re hearing Christmas songs everywhere you go. As each year passes, it seems that more and more stores and establishments are playing it.

I love hearing Christmas music, but not all day long. Several years ago my favourite radio station on December 1 started playing Christmas music 24 hours per day. They still had their news reports and all the chit-chat but the music was all Christmas.

It used to be just Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but when they started this, I found another station to listen to. That is, until Christmas finally arrived, because they do play some of the best variety of Christmas songs. The old time favourites, the traditional Christmas Carols and the songs that make it to the music charts.

This list isn’t at all inclusive, I know what music I like but I often can’t remember the song title or the artist. So I’ve had some fun putting this list together by visiting YouTube and listening to the songs.

These are my favourites – in no particular order.

The Early Years

White Christmas – Bing Crosby
The Christmas Song – Nat King Cole (Chestnuts Roasting On An Open Fire)
I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus – The Ronettes
Jingle Bell Rock – Bobby Helms
Little Drummer Boy – The Harry Simeone Chorale
Rudolph, The Red Nosed Reindeer – Gene Autry
Here Comes Santa Claus – Gene Autry
A Holly Jolly Christmas – Burl Ives
When a Child Is Born – Johnny Mathis

The Later Years

Mary’s Boy Child – Harry Belafonte
Mary’s Boy Child – Boney M., 1978
What Child is This – Moody Blues
When A Child is Born – Moody Blues
Peace on Earth (Little Drummer Boy) – Bing Crosby & David Bowie
Happy Christmas – John Lennon & Yoko Ono
Do They Know It’s Christmas – Band Aid 1984
– The first ever multi-artist charity single, this track was recorded in Christmas 1984 by a host of celebrity vocalists to raise money for the famine in Ethiopia.
Last Christmas – Wham
All I Want For Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey
Santa Claus Is Coming To Town – Bruce Springsteen
Hallelujah Leonard Cohen (others Jeff Buckley, K.D. Lang and more)
Mull of Kintyre – Paul McCartney & Wings

Following is the list of traditional Christmas Carols.

1. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
2. O Come All Ye Faithful
3. Silent Night
4. O Little Town of Bethlehem
5. Angels We Have Heard on High
6. O Holy Night
7. Away in a Manger
8. Good Christian Men, Rejoice
9. What Child Is This?
10. It Came Upon a Midnight Clear
11. Go Tell It on the Mountain
12. Joy to the World
13. First Noel, The
14. We Three Kings
15. Little Drummer Boy, The
16. I’ll Be Home for Christmas
17. Deck the Halls
18. White Christmas
19. Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!
20. Jingle Bells
21. O Christmas Tree
22. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas
23. Silver Bells
24. Winter Wonderland
25. We Wish You a Merry Christmas
Some songs have been listed more than once because of the different versions.

If you haven’t put together a Christmas music playlist yet, here’s an opportunity for you.

Just head over to YouTube, copy and paste the titles from these lists and search for the titles and then add to your favourites. You can find some real gems here.

If you don’t have an account, it’s easy to create one and add your own personal playlist of Christmas songs.

Everyone has their favourites, what are yours?

Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Find your Christmas songs here.


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or not – Suzy gets to rant today!

December 20, 2010 Leave a comment

Since I am trying to keep the negative thoughts away and instead spend precious time with my daughter, I’ve decided to let Suzy Malloy have the space today.

There’s nothing bugging me today!
Merry Christmas

A rant about poor website design

By Suzy Molloy

I’ve been comparing sales pages, sign up and squeeze pages recently.

Whilst there are some great quality designs out there nothing screams amateur as much as:

**poorly designed websites. You know the type, they load half off screen, or use blue text on a black background

**improper use of flash (Oh look I’ve just done my primary school flash animation project so I’ll include it here)

**pixelated graphics. Grainy and out of focus looking like they were stolen from newspapers.

**Images and graphics which don’t match or relate to the text copy. Don’t type “click the box that says BUY ME and then include a box graphic which says ADD TO CART”

My tips to better website page design:

**Proper use of white-space and use of dot points to highlight features makes it much easier to read.

**Properly formatted headings and subtitles. No meta-tags, or a page which says title instead of naming the page, not only looks unprofessional but you are wasting an important SEO opportunity here.

**Attention to detail – Proof read for errors and try your site in a variety of browser types.

Seriously plain text websites can look more professional than using the wrong graphics and images. I don’t want to get started here but just because you found an image online does not mean that it is free for you to use. Double check usage rights, copyright and keep yourself on the right side of the law.

I recommend you use a template for a design starting point. Even seasoned marketers and web designers make use of the good ones.

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© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying

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Article Screening & Rating

December 16, 2010 6 comments

I belong to a web site where articles need to be screened and rated by members before they are published. While the article is in the screening room, the author’s name isn’t visible but the country it is directed at is. If it is directed at the global community there is no flag, otherwise a small image of an American, Canadian, Australian, etc flag appears next to the article name.

There are members who publish articles daily, weekly and sometimes occasionally. Some of these members never screen articles, and if they do, it seems that they only screen the articles their friends have posted. I have no proof of this, but just something I’ve observed.

Now, I don’t know if it’s the same people, because the screening is anonymous, but there are members who pick and choose the articles they will read. If the article has an American flag on it, it goes through the screening process fairly quickly. If it’s designated as global or another country, it can sit in the room for hours, sometimes days.

A fellow member published one yesterday as American and it went through the screening process in 7 hours. It actually had 3 screenings, within about 5 minutes of it being posted. Yet others will sometimes sit for hours before even one person will take the time to screen it and rate it.

At this time, there are 8 articles that need screening, 2 global, 3 American, 1 Philippines, 1 New Zealand and 1 Indian, they were all screened by someone at 353am, but at 637am, someone went in and screened just one of those articles and it has an American flag.

Selective screening. I detest people who behave in this manner. What makes them think they are better than others?

One article was posted on Dec. 14 at 10:05PM,, marked from New Zealand and discussing the tragedy at the mine. It finally cleared the screening room on Dec 16th at 3:53AM. Almost 30 hours, yet the American flagged one cleared yesterday in 7 hours, it was posted after this one. The odd thing about this article from New Zealand is that it had only needed one additional screening since Dec 15th at 5:18PM. Lets list it out so you can get a better picture of the times.

  • Dec 14th at 10:05PM – posted to screening room
  • Dec 15th at 5:18PM  – needed just one more screening
  • Dec 16th at 3:53AM  – finally published

Why are these things happening?

I have my own little story about what happened with one of my articles, but then some are holding a grudge, so I’ve decided to report on this one. I hadn’t planned to cover this article, it’s just what I’ve observed.

Because I like seeing the good in people, I did not want to believe that members are doing this to other members.

This is as good a place as any to say this. So here goes!

If you want to play games, go ahead. You don’t want to screen, just run around following people, go ahead.

FYI    Since returning to the web site just over two months ago,  I have read, screened, rated over 1250 articles, including the archives! This doesn’t count the many I couldn’t rate or had no wish to comment on.

When I went into the screening room, I read and rated every article. I also provided feedback when necessary.

What’s that equal? About 500 per month average?

Well, no more. There is no requirement to screen at the site before posting articles, so maybe I will do like the rest of them.

Now I know I am only one person, but like I showed you in the example above, just one person is all that’s needed sometimes to finally get your article published.

This is what’s bugging me today!


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© 2010-2011 Things in life I find annoying