Where My Love for Reading Took Me……

I have enjoyed blogging so much on Allison Alexander‘s fabulous site, aMomKnowsBest, that I decided I would try it out it myself!  I am a former teacher who absolutely loves reading, so I thought,  why not make a blog geared towards reading? So, that’s what I’ve decided to do with my new blog MamaLuvsBooks!

Here is the outline for what I will be blogging about:

Mondays: Kids’ Book Reviews

Tuesdays: Tips and Advice for teaching kids to read

Wednesdays: Wordless Wednesdays (pictures posted related to reading/writing)

Thursdays: What’s Mom Reading? (reviews of parenting books, or just books moms like to read)

Fridays: Discussion Day (questions and answers, and the first Friday of each month will be our “Virtual Book Club”)

* “Virtual Book Club” will be a discussion on Twitter on the first Friday of each month from 8-9pm.  We will talk via #hashtags that will be provided before the discussion.  The books will be posted a month in advance (maybe sooner) so you will know what to read!  It should be fun, and hopefully in the near future I can supply prizes during the discussion!

Now, how to blog……..

I wasn’t quite sure where to start, so I asked around a bit.  I heard from most people that Blogger is a good place for a first blog.  It’s kind of like a nice safe car for a first time driver.  I started with following everything I needed to do in order to set-up the blog through Blogger.  It was very step-by-step and easy to follow.

Next, I had to navigate around Blogger to find out how to do certain things; like post blogs, add gadgets (things listed on your sidebar), change the look of the blog (design), make a TwitterFacebook and StumbleUpon button so people could connect to me there as well, and learn to check stats/views.  This took a while to search around, but just play with the menu bar up top and you will learn a lot.  The “help” section also answers a lot of questions.

I decided after that to purchase my domain (URL).  This way I could make it what I wanted without the “blogspot” being in my URL.  It was only $10 for the year to purchase the domain.  Totally worth it,  I think!  It’s much easier for people to remember a shorter URL.  Why do you think phone numbers are only 7 digits?  Our brains can only hold so much information at one time.

The next things I learned that are important in blogging are to have a Twitter page with a handle set-up (one that relates to your blog), and also a Facebook page set-up to have people follow you.  Not everyone has an account to be able to follow your blog through Google Friend Connect (GFC).  Having the Facebook page to “Like” gives others the opportunity to follow you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

What I’m learning currently is Twitter etiquette (to make sure I don’t chase any followers away), meeting other bloggers on-line (blog hops are good ways to meet people and promote your blog), and using AdSense and Amazon Associates to possibly earn some money from doing my blog.  That is set-up through Blogger as well and can give you money when people click on Ads on your page.  I am still working on all of these!

In the meantime, I’m just going to write and have fun!  My site was set-up because I LOVE books and reading, and sharing that love and any advice I can give people is my main goal.

If you want to follow my new blog, please check me out at:  http://www.mamaluvsbooks.com, or you can find me on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MamaLuvsBooks, or Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/MamaLuvsBooks

*  I have a 100 Follower Giveaway going for people that “Like” my Facebook page, or follow me on my blog through Google Friend Connect!  The winner will get a choice of a book from Usborne Books for Kids!

If you have any questions about setting up a blog, then please comment below and ask.  Or if you are a blogger and have advice to share, then I would LOVE to hear it!  I’m learning as I go!  THANKS!!!  And thank you Allison for getting me interested in blogging!!!

Kristin Wheeler

The Versatile Blogger

My pal Melissa recently started a blog and I’m so happy for her.  She is in love. Obsessed.  Over the moon, with her new passion.  She’s been a blog reader for a while and asked me a lot of questions about it over recent months.  I’m certainly no expert, but I have learned A LOT in a short amount of time. I’m so excited that she decided to finally take the plunge and that she’s enjoying it so much.  She shot me an email saying she awarded me the “Versatile Blogger Award,” but that I need to pay it forward. So, here are the rules…

After accepting The Versatile Blogger Award :

–Thank the person who gave you the award and link back to them in your post.  Thanks Mel, you’re a gem, my friend, and you are doing a great job at your new site, The Mommyhood Chronicles
–Share 7 things about yourself
–Pass this award to 15  blogs

Here are seven things you probably don’t know about me:
1. I originally went to college to be a psychologist, but ended up a news anchor (in the newsroom, those psych classes come in handy!)
2. My bad moods last for about five minutes, then I’m over it…even then, you can always get me to laugh.
3. I  was married for 12 years before having kids.
4. Spanish was my first language
5. I can tie a cherry stem in a knot with my tongue
6. I have a phobia of driving through car-washes (the pressure of the people watching you as you try to get the tires in the proper place makes me nervous)
7. I used to want to join the Peace Corps, but my career took off, I got married, and, well, life happened…

Now please check out these fantastic bloggers and learn something about them!  BTW, I tried choosing a variety of people with varied interests and niches…but there are so many fabulous bloggers, it was hard to choose just 15!

1. Super Glue Mom

2. Baby Gator’s Den

3. Savoring The Thyme

4. Mission Hot Mama

5. This & That

6. Kat’s Cafe

7. 30 Days of Autism

8. The Mommy Matters

9. Twins with Tots

10. Windy City Momma

11. Seasoned AF Spouse

12. The Average Girl’s Guide

13. Life is Hard, Laugh Anyway

14. Kludgy Mom

15. A Nut in A Nutshell

Memorable Moments of Mom 2.0 (Part 1)

NOLA Ritz

NOLA Ritz, locale for Mom 2.0

 Life is about memorable moments. Creating them. Savoring them. Replicating them.  (It never hurts to try.) As Mom 2.0 approached, and the talk on twitter, facebook, and email peaked leading up to the 3 day conference,  my excitement increased. I knew I would learn a massive amount of information. The ingenuity, creativity, dedication, and passion of women like Kimberly Blaine, Jyl Pattee, Emily McKhann, Andrea Wishom, Liz Gumbinner, Beth Lemanach is knock your socks off inspiring. I honestly don’t know how you guys do it. While I only dropped named a few names, truth is—every single person I met during Mom 2.0 moved me in some way. I left every conversation thirsty for additional knowledge, empowered, and excited to do more. Faster. Better. Smarter. I wondered how on earth I was going to manage it all, plus a full time career as a TV Anchor.  The content at Mom 2.0 is top notch. I was often torn as to which breakout session to attend. The New Style: Bloggers, Brands and the Post Review & Giveaway Era or Video, Multimedia and Monetization: How Video Can Realistically Raise your Visibility and Credibility??   Creating and Building Influence or Personal Brand Building: Real-time Coaching and Brainstorming on Building Your Personal Brand and Where it Can Intersect with Big Brands??  Ultimately, I discovered it was the people BEHIND the message, more than the message itself that stayed with me…and THAT’S what making memorable moments is all about. The bonds you create with people. The lasting friendships, and partnerships. Conferences allow brands, bloggers, and PR folks to see the REAL you, not the person hiding behind the computer screen. On several of the headers on my site I have three words that I was happy to hear often throughout Mom 2.0. Authentic. Engaging. Approachable. More Mom 2.0 posts are to come, but if someone were to ask me to describe the people and discussions at the conference, I would describe them quite simply with the words we live by at  A Mom Knows Best.   Authentic. Engaging. Approachable.

Getting Gorgeous in New York City

New York City

It’s going to be a fun weekend. Today, several of the contributors and I are piling in Carrie’s SUV and heading to New York City where we will meet up with Katrina for a day of fashion, fun & beauty…oh, and pampering!  Two of my friends are putting on a spectacular event in the city called Getting Gorgeous, and it is going to be fabulous!  Audrey McClelland & Vera Sweeney are the masterminds behind the event and, to be honest, I’ve never even met Vera before–but any friend of Audrey’s is a friend of mine.

This will actually be my first “event” as a blogger and I can speak for all of the ladies of  A Mom Knows Best when I say we are thrilled to get a little R&R, meet some other wonderful women and engage with the terrific brands that will be in attendence.  I really have to give Audrey & Vera  a hand for choosing terrific companies to allign themselves with.  We’re talking Degree, Lifetime Moms, Hanes, Sandals Resorts (BTW, who else is DYING for a vacation after our recent snow in New England?) Weight Watchers & Goody Hair…just to name a few!dad NYC

After hanging with the girls all day, my husband and baby will pick me up and we’ll spend the night with our good friends who have a daughter just two weeks younger than Paige.  The babies always have such a great time together and it’s so fun to see them interact!  Sunday I have a business lunch at a great little restaurant I’ve been dying to try, right by the water, before heading back to Rhode Island.  Crossing my fingers that Paige sleeps a little in the car.  She’s typically good for about an hour…that’s it.  Maybe it’s time to invest in one of those portable DVD players…although since she’s never seen a movie it might kind of freak her out.

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