Wednesday, August 11, 2010

2 More Buttons

I really like both of these! My only problem now is that I was a little confused on what the term "royalty free" meant. So, now the question is. . .use them and assume my little blog will go unnoticed by the clip art police or pay for them (yeah. . .um, no), or find some suitable ACTUAL free images. Sigh. . .

Sunday, August 8, 2010

I Need a Blog Button!

I'm not quite ready to pay for a URL or for anyone to design my blog for me, but using some very simple instructions found here, I was able to create these 3 within minutes.

They would all need some tweaking and I didn't check any copyrights or anything, just did a basic google image search to get some quick results. The final product will be of much higher quality (I hope). Thought I'd share my button making fun with you, though! Enjoy! And feel free to leave comments or suggestions on how you made your button or which direction you think I should go with mine!

Oh yeah, and I won 2 giveaways this week. That's right.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Welcome To Your New Addiction

When I got my first tattoo, there was a sign posted in front of the chair I sat in that read "Welcome to your new addiction". As I sat through the excruciating pain I thought to myself, "Right! They are crazy this is my one and only tattoo and I'm not sure I'm leaving here with a complete one". However, the tattoo was (and of course still is and will always be) the Chinese symbol for strong, symbolic of Philippians 4:13 which states that 'I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me'. So, I thought I'd better tough it out, lest I fail as a witness to the charming tattoo artists in a small town outside of  New York City of that very strength I was claiming to have. Alas, I made it through and while I wouldn't say it became my new addiction, I now have 3 and have thrown around thoughts of one more. Three in 12 years is hardly an addiction. No, an addiction is something you can't get enough of. Something which interferes with a healthy and productive lifestyle, something that leaves you yearning for more when you are forced to go without. My new addiction? The thing that I'm yearning for even as I sit and update my blog? The thing causing me to lose sleep at night, thus interfering with my daily productiveness? The thing I JUST.CAN'T.STOP?

Blog Giveaways.

Did you roll your eyes at me? Good. I didn't think so. This is seriously becoming a problem. More often than not I fall asleep at night face down in my laptop because I MUST get my daily tweets in or check the odds on this or that. Now, with all addictions, comes some sort of high. Otherwise, why would addicts continue to return over and over and over? My high? Why, WINNING giveaways of course! Most of you are probably thinking, "nobody ever really wins anything in those online contests, its such a waste of time". That's where you're wrong, my friend. I was surprised when I got an email stating I was the winner of my first prize and even more surprised when 2 or 3 followed that same week. Ever since then, the winnings have continued! And I'm coming back for more! Throw in a few glasses of wine on a Friday night and I have myself a little giveaway entering party on my hands...wait a minute, I just sounded a little pathetic. . .scratch that image from your heads immediately.

Let's get back to the topic at hand, WINNING! Because I'm a Winner! (no, really, I am) What have I won? Well, let me tell you! The first thing i won, which was actually pre-addiction and random (we'll call it the 'gateway prize to my future winning addiction) but shouldn't go unmentioned, was a Crystal Decanter and set of Olive Spoons. The decanter is lovely, a bit out of place in the apartment I share with my toddler, but lovely nonetheless. And while I don't sip martini's topped with olives retrieved with my lovely spoons, they have come in handy at SEVERAL tea parties in my living room.

Since  the obsession began about a year later, because I clicked on a mommy blog that linked to a giveaway blog that linked to another one that linked to another one. . . and so on, I have won the following:

And my favorite,
  • the Ultimate Camp Pack of Personalized Labels from Lovable Labels valued at $45
I also have about 6 items I am unable to list because they are tucked away as Christmas gifts for readers of this blog, as are a couple of the items mentioned above for my daughter, a non-reader of this blog.

Its important to go into giveaway entering with a strategy. You can't just enter giveaways all willy nilly. You must weigh the odds against the prize. Is the item worth taking the time to fulfill the entry requirements, which usually includes posting several comments, following, liking, befriending, browsing, subscribing, and tweeting. I admit my twitter account is for the sole purpose of winning giveaways. Facebook is mine, I won't risk deletion by others by filling my statuses with giveaway updates, but only follow me on twitter if you are prepared to know about every giveaway from a charm bracelet to the car of your dreams. Consider yourself warned. To find giveaways, you can do a number of things. You might begin with some general Google searches, such as "clock giveaway" and search for items you are in the market for anyway. I don't prefer that method for some reason. Its a little all over the place and can lead you strange places (yes, yes, I realize what you are thinking and ironic it is, indeed). It may be necessary to get you started, though. You can then stick to a few tried and true blogs which review quality products, book mark them, visit on a regular schedule, and enter until your heart's content.  Most have weekly link ups where other bloggers can link to their own giveaways. You can scroll through these and choose the ones you want to enter. This will lead to new favorites and your bookmark toolbar will become longer than ever intended by the inventor of the bookmark toolbar. I plan to take advantage of the folders one day. That day is not today though, my friends. The link up lists can become a bit redundant unless you manage to figure out which bloggers blog in the same "circle" and pick a top blog from each circle you come across. (No, I don't think this is becoming a little to involved. Why do you ask?). Or, you can use a site such as Prizey or Giveaway Scout, which will categorize giveaways for you and you can search in a more organized fashion. . .not really my cup of tea either.  There are treasures to be found when you aren't so directional in your blog giveaway thinking. The best is if you can find a newer giveaway blog (many found here) without a lot of followers  who has already landed some big giveaways. Why, you've just discovered blog giveaway gold!

I will probably begin mentioning a few of my favorite giveaways weekly on my blog. Why? So, that you, the reader, will have every opportunity to experience the joy that is winning just as I have. And, because it will usually allow me anywhere from 1-10 extra entries into the particular giveaway I am blogging about. ;0) Currently I have my eye on some real fine prizes. Check them out. . .I dare you.

Welcome to your new addiction.