CLASSICALLY, FAITHFULLY HOMESCHOOLING 4 BOYS

My Top 10 Links & Tools for Blogging

Top Ten Links & Tools for Blogging

I have only recently started blogging and boy has it been an adventure! But thanks to the wonderful people at Inspired Bloggers, I am figuring this thing out! Along this adventure I have discovered some really great things that I want to share with you today on Top Ten Tuesday from Many Little Blessings.

These things have become my life line for blogging.

 

1. EVERNOTE – this free program has become my storing place for everything! It is amazing what Evernote can do. If you haven’t checked it out, please do so now! It is well worth the time to at least visit the site. It is a way to store all your ideas, recipes, files for pretty much anything, scanned documents (even handwritten ones), websites, links, clips of websites, pictures, Word or Excel docs……………and the best thing about Evernote is that all of this information can be searched by the tags you add. All of your information is stored by creating a Notebook, then you add “notes” to that notebook. For example, I have a Notebook called “Blogging” and within that notebook I have notes for: Ideas for posts, Legal Stuff, Link Ups / Blog Hops / Blog Carnivals, Social Media, Making Money and Design Ideas. When I write inside these notes, I add tags, same as when writing a post for your blog. These tags can be searched. I have a tag called “To Do List” and I add this tag to anything I need to keep within in my view every day. I can also print them out if I need to.

Another good thing about Evernote is the ability to scan handwritten documents, add tags and its included in your search results.

Here is a screen shot of my Notebooks:evernote screen shot

2) Dropbox – I discovered this handy little tool when searching for tips on uploading pictures from my computer to Instagram. Turns out, you can’t do that unless you have Dropbox. This is a free program that you can download to your computer or multiple computers, iphone, ipad, or tablet. Once you have it on several devices, you can share the stored files. What is so great about this you might ask? Well, I will tell you……these files can consist of pdf’s, doc. files, excel files, pictures or videos. I can upload them from my laptop and then see them on my iphone through my Dropbox app. From my iphone I can share my Dropbox pictures on Instagram or any other app. Also, if I am working on a blog post and I start typing it in MSWord on my laptop, then I have to leave my laptop, I can upload the file to Dropbox and continue to work on it from my tablet.. How awesome is that?? Especially for us busy on-the-go moms! I am so excited by the possibilities!

3) Inspired Bloggers FB Page – I cannot say enough great things about this group of ladies! I found the Facebook group through Tabitha of MeetPenny.com and immediately requested to join. There are veteran bloggers, newbie bloggers (like me) and some in between bloggers. Everyone is so very helpful and kind to one another. Tabitha has posted tons of support and help threads that I have been reading through over the last few days. When I have a problem or don’t understand something, I can ask the group and get an immediate response from at least 5 people. It is also a great way to get your blog out in the blogosphere because everyone helps to promote each other. If you are  new to blogging, you must visit them!

4) BloggingwithAmy.com – She has tons of information about blogging tips and using WordPress. She has helps for starting your own blog and speaks in terms easy to understand for us newbie’s :). I have gained a wealth of information from her site. I am looking forward to this particular article: How to Make A Blog Button.

5) The WordPress Handbook – 60+ Resources For First Time WordPress User – This site has a ton of resources for pretty much anything to do with WordPress. I haven’t went through all of it yet, but it is definitely bookmarked and pinned for my reference material.

6) My Pinterest Board – Now that I am officially blogging and trying to build my followers, I view Pinterest in a totally different way. It was just a place to hold things I like so I wouldn’t loose them. Now, I am learning how to market my blog through Pinterest by reading URL’s and source pins and stats on most pinned pics…………….(I just love learning the bloggin jargin!). Here are some great sites for Pinterest and blogging:

Helpful Tips for using Pinterest

Marketing with Pinterest

Pinterest Blogging Boards

 7) Instagram  –  I never used Instagram until I started blogging. When I set up my blog in WordPress and chose the Genesis them Glitter, it had a space for Instagram pictures to slide across the page. With me being a visual person, I like to see photos when I read blogs and I love to look at pictures of others homeschooling days or their homeschool rooms, how they organize things, etc. Instagram is the perfect way for me to make my blog visual. So I started taking random pictures of our homeschooling and added them to Instagram. Now they show on my blog and give readers a glimpse of how we homeschool. I hope this will make my blog more inviting and real for readers.

8) Blogging Planner – This is a must have for me! I use my planner to organize my thoughts for blog ideas and scheduling posts. Once I get my post published, I save the file in Evernote, as a backup and log of my what I write. There are a lot of great planners out there, for free.

Links to planners:

confessions of a homeschooler

saynotsweetanne.com

mama jenn

pinterest boards

9) Link-Ups / Blog Hops / Blog Carnivals / Facebook Parties – these are all great tools for marketing your blog and such a great way to meet people. I have met some really great people so far and I have come to realize that blogging is really a family community. People are so willing to help each other out and to return the blog love no matter how big or well-known their blog may be. Here are some ideas for finding link-ups and hops:

Tons of link-up ideas

Top Ten Tuesday at Many Little Blessings

Hip Homeschool Hop

Living & Learning at Home

The Homeschool Village

In addition to these, a google search will bring up tons of places to link-up, BUT before you go link-up crazy and start posting everywhere, read up about linky etiquette or you could be booed before you even get started. Here is one great article: What Every Blogger Wants You to Know…. check for others around the net, I know they are there.

10) My copy of the iblog ebook – if you are a new blogger, you.must.have.this.book. you must have it. Did I say how great this book is and that you must have it?  It is FULL of helpful tips for blogging, WordPress, Blogger, using social media, designing your website, taking great photos, getting subscribers, selling your products, etc, etc, etc. It is a great resource and was written by “30 influential and successful bloggers.” After reading it, I actually contacted a few of the ladies for advice and they were so happy to help me, even though they are probably crazy busy,they will always take the time to help you out because, most likely, they remember what it was like for them, way back when.

Other helpful links:

Craftersminds.com

Pinterest boards for blogging

 

This article was shared at Top Ten Tuesday from Many Little Blessings.

Thanks!

Janeen

 

 

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