The Overwhelming Generosity of Bloggers

Through the blogging community I have made some amazing friends. I never expected a global virtual community to feel so close-knit, and yet this is how I have made some of the closest friends that I have! I think it is fascinating to talk to people from around the world and to experience their lives through their eyes, and it is one of the reasons why I love reading (not just writing) blogs.

While being part of the blogging community, I have been very lucky and won some very generous giveaways, but this week I was lucky enough to receive two prizes in the post, not from giveaways but from bloggers who wanted to thank the supporters of their blogs. I am an avid believer that you can’t get without giving, and I dedicate a lot of my time reading and commenting on other blogs, not out of the expectation that they will return the comment (although many do) but out of the belief that blogging is a community. I often strive to find new bloggers who have the same interests as me, and take the time to follow their blog and comment on their posts, because I know how much those first few statistics meant to me and how they motivated me to keep going. I also believe that I still have a lot to learn about blogging, and by reading other blogs, I can pick up a lot of tips and techniques that have helped me shape my blog. Half of the pleasure of blogging is being introduced to new blogs, new people and new ideas, and the advantage of blogging means that you have the opportunity to discuss these ideas with the writers…it’s not an opportunity to be wasted!

So I would like to say thank you to everyone who has supported my blog, whether it has been right from the beginning or if you are a more recent reader. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Angela and Azura Chan who sent me the following gifts:

Cute crafty goodies from Angela

Cute crafty goodies from Angela

An adorable bundle of goodies from Azura Chan

An adorable bundle of goodies from Azura Chan

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Getting Swap-Bot Savvy

As many of you already know, I absolutely love receiving post! So when I saw Wisher’s blog about Swap-Bot and Postcrossing I knew that I had to find out more!

When I first signed up to Swap-Bot, I was a little bit daunted about signing up to swaps. There are three different types of swaps and you receive ratings for your swaps. There is also a lot of swap jargon used that can be incredibly confusing the first time you encounter it! Some of the swaps are also very strict about who can join, requiring a certain rating average or to have completed a certain number of swaps. This was pretty overwhelming and put me off signing up for anything for a while in case I did something wrong, but Wisher wrote a great jargon buster with clear guides as to what everything means. This made me feel a little more comfortable with the instructions the swaps and I soon found plenty to sign up to!

I have now completed 14 swaps on the site! This means that I have sent off my side of 14 swaps that I have taken part in, although I still haven’t received some of the items from my partners yet and some of my 14 still have to reach their destinations.

The first swap that I took part in was the Hello! I’m from…Round #4 swap, which involved sending a bundle of goodies from your city to tell your partner about where you’re from. I still haven’t heard if my parcel has reached its destination yet, but it was a huge package and it is travelling all the way to Canada! So fingers crossed it reaches its new home soon, and similarly, I’m still waiting to receive my package from Alaska! I am looking forward to receiving my collection of 3 postcards, magnet, map, thee bottle caps, local paper, pen/pencil, traditional recipe and flag from so far away though!

The second swap I took part in has been completed though so I have some photos to show you! I wanted to take part in a heart mail art swap but I didn’t have a high enough rating. Luckily, the organiser was kind enough to organise a private swap just between the two of us to help me get my rating up. She picked an owl theme for our mail art and this is what I sent:

Front

Front

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The Big Blog Exchange

I have taken the plunge and signed up for the Big Blog Exchange. The exchange offers the chance for 16 bloggers to swap lives and blogs for ten days. They are only taking sixteen bloggers from all over the world but I am determined to give it my best shot! If you like reading my blog I’d really appreciate it if you could take the time to vote for me here:  http://www.bigblogexchange.org/blog/30001 you only have to enter your email address and click the link in the confirmation email, thanks for the support 🙂

xx

Musing on my Months of Blogging

Since joining the world of blogging only two (and a bit) short months ago, I have become aware of so many things that I didn’t even know existed before! Admittedly, I didn’t really know what a blog was when I first started! I asked my boyfriend to set me up with one, then for the first week, I was constantly asking what I was meant to write about! However, after some practice and some inspiration from other bloggers, I finally cracked it and knew what to write!

Not only have I been initiated into the world of blogging, which was initially a place to showcase my writing, I have also been entice by the masses of fantastic crafty blogs out there to share my craft projects, instead of just writing about books as I had planned. I am now an avid follower of many wonderful crafty bloggers, and as a result of this I have hundreds of patterns for projects stacking up, as well as many brand new crafts that I am itching to try!

As well as discovering new projects and hobbies, a world of useful resources has come available to me! Without my fellow bloggers, I would not be aware of fantastic sites such as Ravelry (my number one source of crochet patterns) where I can find a pattern for ANYTHING that I want to make, and more often than not the pattern is free! Pintrest is another site that I have only learnt about through blogging, and it is a fantastic source, I find, for pinning all of my ‘to buy’ or ‘to do’ patterns in one place, as previously they all got lost among the rest of my bookmarks! Through other pinners, I have also come across many more patterns that I otherwise wouldn’t have encountered.

So, as a result of blogging, I have gained an improved method for writing reviews, hundreds of new cross stitch and crochet projects, numerous new activities to try and lots of new friends! I think the most amazing this about blogging is being able to communicate and share ideas with people who share the same interests as you, from all over the world! So thank you to everyone who follows me and for everyone who has written a blog that has inspired me in some way!

Happy blogging!