New blog idea

554166_647198945310973_1155338362_nI’m thinking of writing a puppy blog.  As we’ve just bought 2 collie puppies from a farm in Wales, I though it might be interesting to record their progress over the weeks & months and wondered if there would actually be any interest.

I’d love to hear from my followers just whether I should or not.

Please let me know what you all think!

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You think English is easy??

I can’t take credit for this but I felt it needed to be seen by as many people as possible.  I’m sure you can all think of other examples that could be added here too 🙂 (Mine is at the end!)

I think a retired English teacher was bored…THIS IS GREAT!

I’m sure this took a lot of work to put together!

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.

2) The farm was used to produce produce.

3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.

4) We must polish the Polish furniture.

5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.

6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.

7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.

8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.

9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.

10) I did not object to the object.

11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.

12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.

13) They were too close to the door to close it.

14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.

15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.

16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.

17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.

18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.

19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.

20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

Let’s face it – English is a crazy language.

There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple.

English muffins weren’t invented in England or French fries in France .

Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren’t sweet, are meat.

We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

And why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham?

If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth, beeth?

One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices?

Doesn’t it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend?

If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?

If teachers taught, why didn’t preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?

Sometimes I think all the English speakers should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane.

In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship?

Have noses that run and feet that smell?

How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which, an alarm goes off by going on. English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all. That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.

PS. – Why doesn’t ‘Buick’ rhyme with ‘quick’?

Thank you Brian

 

(A great read that had to be read! – Nessie :))

In Search of Village Life

A personal poetry blog – thought I’d repost here

nimspoems

As I journey through the countryside,
A sadness do I see.
A sadness that was rural life,
And true community

 

A village now is neatly trimmed
Tall hedges.  There to hide
The new breed of community,
With lives tucked up inside.

 

The grandeur of the wrought iron gates
Protect & isolate,
In place of open cottage doors
With fresh logs in the grate.

 

As children grow & leave the fold,
Off to find bright lights,
So villages lose youth to towns
And rural life it’s fight

 

The cities offer tempting work
So young folk cut their ties
The local trades can trade no more
And so the Village dies

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Feeling Benevolent

It’s been a while since I blogged on here, mainly due to so much going on in my life – but that’s another story.  I just wanted to let everyone know about a wonderful way to give money to your favourite cause whilst shopping & not having to pay extra for the benefit!

It’s a thing called Easy Fundraising and I’ve been using it for a while now to help raise funds for The Border Collie Trust which relies on public support, to help rescuing and re-homing border collies and collie crosses throughout the UK.  I’ve managed to raise over £70.00 so far which hasn’t hurt a bit & has actually made me feel really good.

Our local mum’s also use it to raise funds for the Hinstock Village Primary School.

easyfundraising.org.uk helps charities, schools, sports clubs, community groups, and other good causes to raise money when their supporters shop online.

It works in a similar way to many other loyalty shopping sites, but instead of earning points when you shop, you raise a donation for your cause instead.

Shopping online at over 2,000 well known stores with each donating up to 15% of your spend total. For example, John Lewis will donate 1%, Amazon 1.5%, The Body Shop 6% and some insurance retailers will donate up to £30 just for taking out one of their policies.

You can choose one of the already registered causes in their system to donate or you can register your own cause or charity by completing a short registration form.

If you are a UK Taxpayer, you can also Gift Aid.  Simply tick the Gift Aid box and complete the relevant fields. Every quarter Easy Fundraising will provide your cause (if they are a registered charity) with the information they need to make a claim from HMRC.

Unfortunately The Nest @ John Richards has not figured out a way to get our business on the site to donate but if you are using shopping online with one of the major retailers,  (I suppose, you have to sometimes as we don’t sell holidays etc) why not get yourself registered with Easy Fundraising and do your bit for a worthy cause at the same time?

Understanding Twitter (Part 3)

Twitter for Beginners Part 3

In 2001 I became the co-host in an MSN Chatroom (No! not that kind of chatroom!) It was room for ‘newbies’ i.e. people who had never chatted before & didn’t understand the lingo used.  Since then ‘text speak’ has flourished with the popularity of texting on mobile phones by all ages.  Basically twitter-speak is not unlike text speak with abbreviations & phonetics used to save space & get your message across to your followers using just 140 characters.  Words are mixed together and chopped about to fit into the limited number of characters.
Here are some of the abbreviations & terms used:

ab/abt: Short for “about.” This chat abbreviation is frequently seen on Twitter.

b/c: Twitter shorthand for “because.”

B: Twitter shorthand for “be.”

b4: Twitter shorthand for “before.”

BFN: Short for “bye for now.”

bgd: A shortened form of “background” often used on Twitter
chk: Twitter shorthand for “check.”

cld/cud: Twitter shorthand for “could.”

clk: Twitter shorthand for “click.”
cre8: Often seen on Twitter, it means “create.”
DM: Short for direct message, it is the function of the Twitter service that enables you to send a private message (direct message) to a person you are following.
When limited to the number characters in tweets, it sometimes makes more space if you use numbers instead of words!
1 = one
2 = to or too
3 = free
4 = for
8 = used in Gr8 as great
Some strange twitter terms:
adventuritter: Slang term used to describe a Twitterer who is adventurous

attwaction: Slang term used to describe an attraction between two users.

attwicted: Slang term used to describe someone who is addicted to Twitter.

Bberrytweet: Slang term that refers to using a Blackberry device to send a tweet on Twitter.

beetweet: Slang term used to describe a “hot tweet.” Usually this is a popular, trending topic on Twitter and many users will retweet a beetweet.

bemyguest, #BeMyGuest: A popular Twitter hashtag (#BeMyGuest) to let other Twitter users know you’d like to exchange guest blog posts.

bulltwit: Slang term to describe fake, false or over embellished Tweets.

Celebrity syndrome: This Twitter phrase refers to a situation in which a non-celebrity mistakenly believes he or she is a celebrity. Users with celebrity syndrome will not follow a significant number of Twitter users
co-twitterer: Slang term used to describe a second person who tweets on a single Twitter account.
crank tweet: Similar to a “crank phone call,” it is a misleading tweet.

deets: A shortened version of “details” often found on Twitter.

detweet: Slang term used to describe a tweet you made, then deleted

Understanding Twitter (Part 2)

Hashtags & Searching

Ever wondered what this twitter hashtag thingy is? Do you see people putting things like #bizitalk #competition #charity in their tweets & wonder what they’re for? Using hashtags like #followfriday or it’s shortened version #ff help spread information on Twitter while also helping to organize it. These hashtags can help with networking, either for businesses or individuals.  The #bizitalk hashtag is used by business to meet other businesses who retweet and spread the word to other tweeters, so if I tweet about a particular item I have available in the shop at a bargain price, it would only usually be seen by my followers.  By adding this particular hashtag among others, there is a greater chance for other businesses to retweet my tweet and then, their followers will see it too.  This obviously increases a tweeter’s audience in effect increasing followers.  Individuals use #hashtags to find ‘like-minded’ tweeters.  You may wish to find others who enjoy baking so you can search for a #baking twitter community. Or perhaps you are into running? How about the #runchat tag? You can network or follow other like-minded people on virtually any subject just by using Twitter’s search facility and then join in with conversations on that particular subject using a specific hashtag.  One important thing to remember is that if you want to start a trend on twitter with like minded people using your hashtag – keep it short but different!  If you are planning a village fete or some other event & want to spread the word & get people talking about it, you first need to search for the hashtag that you are thinking of using. If you are having a book club event – Just using #bookclub may not be good enough – there may already be lots of people using this hashtag so search for it.  Try to think of something that will make your hashtag individual.  When you have chosen, then tweet about your event using that hashtag asking if anyone else would like to join & that they should add this hashtag to join in. You will be surprised at how quickly you get like minded people using the tag. Of course, don’t overdo hashtags – It is a total waste of time to just put lots of hashtags in a tweet – as no substance is there to encourage people to retweet and after all, that’s the name of the game!  You don’t need a hashtag if you want to find people in your own town, Just search the name of the town and you will get a stream showing all the tweeters in that location.  The advanced page of Twitter’s search engine has an option to search ‘Near this place’, you can also stipulate within a certain distance, using certain hashtags (there’s that word again!) Or even state what language they tweet in!

Next time: I’ll start with a list of Twitter terminology that you may see in other peoples tweets that may or may not confuse you. Twitterspeak!

Understanding Twitter (part 1)

new_bird_534

I don’t pretend to be an expert on Twitter, far from it! I just like to tweet & have found that people seem to like what I tweet, even the business stuff.  I wanted to write a ‘How to tweet’ in layman’s terms.  Something that will help people who are totally confused and sometimes frightened by twitter.  So if you are involved in SEO, or are a Twitter expert and/or someone who has been tweeting since the year ‘dot’ – this is not for you.  In fact you’d probably be appalled at the way I plan to describe it’s uses.  But this is my blog and I will write it how I see it!

This blog is for the young mum, who has her own little business and is scared to ‘dip her toe’ in the ‘Twitter pond’ because she is overwhelmed by the timeline that is whizzing down the screen.  It’s for the ‘facebooker’ who doesn’t see what benefits there are in just tweeting what in effect is a Facebook status every so often, and with limited characters at that.  It’s for the person who has heard about this twitter thing on TV & radio and doesn’t really care what celebrities are tweeting about but is curious about it’s popularity and uses.  They want to know what use is it to me? Who would be interested in what I have to say if they don’t know me?

Twitter describes itself as, “a service for friends, family, and co–workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?”
Oh no Twitter!  It is much more than that! It is different things to different people and is also very addictive!
Individuals use Twitter for different reasons. (I’ll explain the possibilities next time)
Businesses use it to network with other businesses & to advertise their goods & services.
For me, it’s a chatroom, where I can interact & share with aquaintances, friends, family & yes, dare I say it strangers!  As a business, everyone is a potential customer, so it’s very important to me to interact & have lots of followers.  How do I do that? I try to entertain, I have competitions, I make friends, I retweet. It’s as simple as that!
So, in a nutshell,  it’s a way to link up with like-minded people – total strangers in a lot of cases.  But, unlike Facebook, they don’t have access to your life if you don’t tweet it!
In a way, it can be termed as mini Facebook status updates using a maximum of 140 characters (which can be a struggle sometimes when trying to get your point across! I tend to have to go over what I’ve typed changing ‘to’ into the number 2, deleting definite articles, using the number 4 instead of the word ‘for’ & so on.  I also get rid of spaces where I can and hardly ever use punctuation!  The final sentence usually makes no sense, particularly if I want to leave space for all the ‘hashtags’ that a business needs to include these days! (We’ll get onto the ‘importance’ of the ‘hashtag’ in the next blog.
Another use for Twitter which has caught on is the ‘Twitter Competition’ – A process whereby individuals (known affectionately as ‘compers’) retweet certain phrases which include a particular word using a (yes, you guessed it) ‘hashtag’ to be included in a prize draw run by a business.
So who benefits from these ‘Twitter Competitions’?  The winner, obviously!  The business?  Some would say no, but many think it a way to increase their Twitter presence which in turn increases their overall ‘Web’ presence & can bring more people to their website increasing sales & revenue.  So yes for business, Twitter is very much a form of advertising & getting a name or brand known.  Businesses ask people to follow them and to retweet their prize draw phrase to get a bigger audience & therefore, more followers & more retweets.  Needless to say, the ‘Twitter Competition’ is very popular.
So what is a Retweet or RT?
This allows Twitter users to share the best links, tweets, and gems they find from others using the service.  But for beginners, it’s not immediately obvious what retweets are, or what tools to use to make retweeting easier.  Under most tweets there are options available.  Using these options makes communication & actions easier & quicker – sometimes!

These are the main options available:

  • Expand or View Conversation, means you can open up the dialogue & see what was said previously in the conversation
  • Reply is pretty self-explanatory – If you would like to interact with this tweeter, you click here.
  • Retweet, the magic link that every business would like people to click, so that their tweet reaches even more people. Let me explain: An original tweet will be seen by the tweeter’s followers only.  If this is then retweeted, then it is seen by the retweeter’s followers too, if it’s then retweeted again – well, it can go on & on which means more people see that business tweet/advert & there is a bigger audience for that business.   Another way to retweet is to add the letters RT to a tweet which has been copied & pasted from another tweeter, but this must include their Twitter ID to show that it was their tweet originally.  This usually limits how much of the original tweet can be sent out, as the original tweet may have used the whole 140 characters allowed.  You may then need to readjust the original tweet to fit it in which defeats the object & can totally change the context of the original!  Much easier to use the Retweet link!
  • … More  This option can have lots attached to it’s drop-down menu or it can have very little.  It all depends on whether you are tweeting from a phone (be it an iPhone or Android), from a tablet or indeed a PC or laptop.  I’ve found that they all show tweets & tweeting options differently and there are some things you just can’t do unless you are on a PC or laptop!  Most of the options here are self-explanatory though, so I won’t dwell on them.

The main thing is that tweeting is and can be as sociable as Facebook and I believe it’s easier to meet other people who have the same interests (be it business or other) than it actually is on Facebook because of the ‘hashtag’ phenomenon.

More ‘Twitter Facts soon!

   

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