Introducing Two New Cooking Events, Moving from Blogger to WordPress and My New Blog
This is my fourth post on the new blog and I thought it was time to tell you all about my new home and why I moved. First, let me introduce you to a lady who made it all possible ~ somebody who helped me make the move from Blogger to WordPress, and who designed my new blog ~ Liz from Violet Posy. Liz made the whole experience seem effortless, although I know she worked very hard to make the move possible……THANKS Liz! If you fancy a new makeover for your blog or need a badge to advertise your site, pop over to Violet Posy and let her know I sent you over there, she may offer you a “virtual” G and T!! I would also like to say a BIG thanks to Heather, over at Audrey Eclectic, who painted my original header….Liz and I tried to incorporate her lovely painting into the new header, but it didn’t fit – so now it hangs in pride of place in my kitchen.
Why did I move from Blogger to WordPress?
I have only been food blogging for seven months; before that I was a regular contributor to several national food magazines, but one magazine folded unfortunately and as the recession hit harder, I found it difficult to get regular work as a freelance writer – so I set up my own “stall” and started to blog…. and to coin a hackneyed phrase, I have not looked back. I started on Blogger, and the platform served me well for my formative months; however, as my site traffic grew and as I expanded, I wanted to do more, and some of the features or plugins that I hankered after were simply not available on Blogger, so I started to think about moving over to WordPress. The final decision to move came about due to a very stressful time; last November, my blog was hacked and deleted….I cannot tell you how upset I was – months of hard work, photos, recipes, my words – all gone due to one sad person’s thoughtless and malicious actions….and when I turned to Blogger for help and support, they were found lacking…….I never had any replies to my numerous emails and pleas for help, so that really was the final straw for me, I decided to switch to Self Hosting on WordPress.
So, what’s WordPress like compared to Blogger?
Well, it is early days and I am still finding my way around a very much larger and more sophisticated dashboard, but I can say that based on what I have seen and used so far, I like it! I am amazed at all the plugins (added features) that you can install with WordPress and the high level of professional finish that you can achieve with the platform too. As my blog is predominately all about food, the recipe plugin is fabulous, and, I hope you appreciate the printable recipe feature that all my recipes will have as standard from now on. The reply on dashboard feature to all comments is slick and easy to use, and makes answering comments so quick now…..something that I was finding hard to keep up with on my old Blogger platform. The support for anti-spam is superb and the fact that I am self-hosting, gives me a higher element of control over my own blog, which is reassuring. The range of fonts with the Google Fonts plugin is vast, thus giving all styles and types of blogs far more creativitiy and a chance to build an identity based on different typeface styles……something that I learned when I did my Graphic design degree many years ago! There will be a multitude of other features that has made the move worthwhile, but, as I said, I am still finding my way around, so I will report back at regular intervals.
My Two New Cooking Events
There are many cooking challenges and events around, and the Tea Time Treats monthly challenge that I run with Kate is already very popular…..so why add two more? Well, I have promoted Herbs on Saturday and Slow Sunday on my blog before, as personal weekly cooking posts, using herbs on Saturday and cooking slowly on Sunday of course…..with different herbs and ingredients each week. I thought with the new blog design I would reintroduce them as a communal Blog Hop weekly event…….and all of you who cook with herbs on Saturday or have a Slow Sunday planned, can come along and share your posts via a Blog Hop link on the special pages I will make for each event……blogging is about sharing I feel, and what better way to share than through food! I will be posting more information about these two new events next week. That’s it for today, I do have some more thoughts I would like to share about my big move, but I will leave them for later delectation! See you tomorrow with another BREAKFAST recipe, have a lovely Sunday evening, Karen.
Janice (serialcrafter) says
Oh Karen I’m so tempted, but don’t know if I have time to devote to moving over. Your new blog looks fabulous and I will go now and change the url on my sidebar. Loving ‘Slow Sunday’ as I am casserole queen! I love herbs too, so shouldn’t be too hard to add to Herbs on a Saturday either. Looking forward to seeing all your new features.
I know it is tempting, but if you are happy where you are Janice, then it’s best to stay put….I was pushed really when my blog was hacked/deleted. Thanks for changing the URL….you are already on my WP favourite blogs, but I do need to add my fave blogs to my sidebar too! I thought a blog hop was a nice casualway for people to share their herb and casserole recipes! Karen xx
Hi FT, I don’t follow blogs much, but you’ve done a fabulous job here. I especially love the “Recipe Box”…very nice feature!
Wow – thanks so much! I am still adding recipes to the recipe box! LOL! Karen/FT xx
Charlotte @gofreecakes says
I’ve just moved over from blogger this month. I’ve decided not to take my old content with me and start afresh over at WordPress. I find it technically much more difficult, but the finish is more professional and I think there are more possibilities with WordPress.
I very much look forward to following this new stage in your blogging journey,
Charlotte @gofreecakes x
Thanks Charlotte…it is technically more difficult but the results are worth it, as you said. Great to see you here…Karen xx
Carl Legge says
I made the same move myself in October last year and did the transfer myself. It was a bit daunting to think about doing. However, I did a fair bit of research and the actual move went pretty smoothly.
I messed up an update of WordPress and some plugins by not taking the time to thoroughly read the instructions. But I;ve sorted than now.
I’d recommend anyone self hosting to make sure they backup their database and the word press files at frequet intervals. This will help them restore to a recent point without having to recreate content if something does go wrong.
I’ve started using Akismet for comment spam filtering and I think it’s well worth the relatively small subscription.
So pleased to have ‘met’ you through Twitter. Looking forward to reading more of your blog.
Thanks SO much Carl for your support and comments….and also for the VERY useful information about backups etc. I have Akismet installed, so that is reassuring….likewise, it is nice to have met you through Twitter too, here’s to many more tweets! Karen
Working London mummy says
Love look of new blog! Am hoping to change if get time when on mat leave! Will try to join in the hops as well. I have been a bit remiss at logging and tweeting recently as so much work to do before baby but hopefully will take part more actively again soon! X
Thanks Nazima! You MUST just take it easy…..I am always here and I always love to see you when you have time! Karen xx
Hi Karen, Welcome to your new place! It looks great, and I’m glad that the little painted lady has such a good home 🙂 I’m sorry to hear that your blog was hacked, that’s terrible. People can do such terrible and spiteful things out of jealousy. But you cant let them get you done, so bravo on keeping things up! Have fun with your new blog!~
Welcome Heather! LOVELY to see you here! The painted lady is in my kitchen! Karen xx
A Trifle Rushed says
Karen, what a great post. I’m going to do my best to join in your blog hops whenever I can. The new blog really is looking good, and as you say the comment box is easy to use. Safe journey home tomorrow. Jude x
Thanks Jude, I am home now……I will be over to see you and that trifle soon….need to catch up on comments! Karen xx
I’m glad you’re enjoying your new blog home. I went ahead and changed your link on my linky page. It’s so exciting to have a custom domain!
“Herbs on Saturday” and “Slow Sunday” sound like a lot of fun!
WOW! Thanks Lauren! Karen XX
Congrats on the big move! I moved over to wordpress a few months ago and it is so much more in every sense than the other sites I had used before! Your page is looking amazing!
Aw thanks Jenny, another WP fan then….that’s reassuring! THANKS for your kind comments. Karen xx
Hi Karen and congrats on your new site its GORGEOUS!! Really professional looking – I’m always terrified that I’m going to loose my site to a hacker or something awful like that – I think you’ve made a great decision here – congrats and so looking forward to all the fun to come!
WELCOME Mary! Lovely to see you have found me!Karen XX
You’re looking good Karen!
It fills me with dread thinking about having to possibly move but I can understand why you felt the need. I can’t believe what happened but as mentioned above, good for you in not letting it deter you 😀
I wish you well and good luck in your new home (I’m sure you won’t need it)
Looking forward to future events.
Have a great week ;D
GREAT! You found me Neesie! LOVELY to see you here! Thanks, Karen xx
Congratulations on making the move and welcome to WordPress! Looking forward to reading many more gorgeous recipes and journeys through the world of food with you as my guide 🙂
Thanks so much, what wonderful comments…..I so appreciate them all, Karen XX
Sally - My Custard Pie says
Bravo with the move – and nice to know a bit more about your blogging journey through this post. I’m a huge WordPress fan and have found the support absolutely excellent both through the forums and individual replies from the support team….something you most definately don’t get at Blogger (they don’t even enable comments on their own blog!). Good luck – I’m sure you’ll go from strength to strength.
Thanks so much for popping by Sally! And for your support and kind words too….I am now able to follow you and all my WP blogs more easily I found out, so I did win there too! Karen XX
Hiya lovely… well it certainly looks good. I’ve been toying with the idea of moving for over a year now. I have even transferred everything over to wordpress but I still like the comfort and simplicity of blogger. My one frustrating thing is that you dont ave your family of followers quite so visible. I like having everyone in one place and google reader is very good for that. Oh and by the way, I have joined your new blog but and this is also frustrating, you don’t receive the emails until at least 24 hours after they are posted, so I have to hunt down those blogs that are not in my google reader, which can be rather annoying. I wonder if there is a way to speed up the receiving process?
Other than that, it does look good plus I do like the sound of the two new challenges, although a word to the wise, try not to ask too much of your dear followers and readers, it can all become rather daunting. (I love you and your blog though, so please don’t take any of the above as critisism, just blog chat from one blogger to another) xx
Thanks so much Dom for the candid and honest comments, I like that and I totally get what you are saying too…..I did feel so weird when I finally left my old site….I felt like I was jumping ship! LOL! But for me, the move works, and it is so very personal I think! As for the challenges, they are fun “only if you have time” kind of events, NOT like the Tea Time Treats, Random Recipes, We Should Cocoa, Breakfast Club events…..but just a wee Blog Hop kind of thing, to share what we have cooked, BUT only if we have cooked anything! I have now set up a Blog Followers list on WordPress and it updates almost immediately, so I am happy with that…I will look into that email delay thing too Dom, and let you know what I find! Thanks for adding my new link, now I am home, I am adding you and all my other blogs to my sidebar too! THANKS for your comments, I appreciate them immensely. Karen XX
oh nd by the way, I have update your link on my blog xx
Sarah, Maison Cupcake says
Welcome to WordPress! You won’t look back!
Thanks so much Sarah! I already love the move…..Karen xx
I’m a chicken about change. So I tend to stick with what I know. Your events look very good. I am hosting a Blogging Event on my own page from today. Come Dine With Me Virtual Dinner Party, where each participant has the chance to host their own Dinner Party and invite the world. I even have a fab prize being donated by the Hello Fresh People. Would love you to participate!
Hi Marie! Thanks so much for your support and comments….and I will be popping over to see your new blogging event a tick!
Sylvie (A Pot of Tea) says
Karen, well done for jumping! I’ve been toying with the idea as I want to make a few chnages, but keep putting it off. Luckily so far I have had no real disasters in 5 1/2 years on blogger. It’s looking great around here!
Thanks Sylvie! It isn’t for everyone, but I feel I have made the right move! Karen xx
Misk Cooks says
I’m glad that I subscribed to your precious blog because I was notified of your move! At the moment I’m trying to figure out how to draw in more people to comment. Have you found your Facebook page helps with that?
Yes, I have a redirect on the old blog so all my followers can follow me here to my new blog! I am so pleased you found me too! I do find that my facebook page helps a little, yes,I will pop over and see you later! Karen
A very useful and informative posting. Blogger can be frustrating at times and I have only heard of one other person who had their blog hacked and destroyed, but that was years ago. Your new blog appears to give more opportunities with sidebars than blogger and the layout is pleasing to the eye too.
Thanks Maggie! I was hoping that this post would prove useful to other bloggers, it is all a matter of personal preference, but I am so glad I made the move to self-host. Karen
Dave at eRecipeCards says
WOW… just love the new look. VERY professional. The recipe box alone makes it worth looking into. Congrats on making the change. As I have read in the comments (and agree), it is a daunting task. Someday when i am old and grey (shut up, I mean older and greyer), I may give it a try.
Sorry i have been away for awhile, very busy on the business front, but will be checking some of your newer posts now
Thanks Dave! I have been to eRecipeCards to change my URL already and will be back posting there regularly as soon as I get the hang of the new platform! Thanks so much for your LOVELY comments, and see you soon! Karen
Karen, I have wondered what the difference is, although I must say, I don’t think I could face moving in the near future I have only just got use to blogger and I am sure I am still not using all the right bits. Your new site looks great.
LOVELY to see you here! I was afraid that lots of my old followers would not find me, but you are here! Thanks for your kind comments…….and I will be over to see you soon! Karen