Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tips on New Widgets for Blogger blogs and Credits for the creators of these widgets

My topic this time is somewhat a departure from my usual blog entries. But I got two reasons why I wrote this blog: first is ... I've been asked a few times by some friends where I got them and how to put these items found on my sidebar; and second ... I've long wanted to express my gratitude to those who created these widgets. Until now, the language they use still fascinates me.

1. Creating your Guestbook

While browsing through different sites I found the Smart Guestbook site that taught me how to create a Guestbook. The image below is the result of hours of tinkering and playing around with the different tools found in this site. I'd suggest you click your mouse on the image to view it more clearly, in a larger format.

Maybe, if I were to do this again, it's gonna take me just a little bit more than an hour. It's quite easy and simple actually. I guess, the reason it took me so long to finish it when I did it the first time was ... I enjoyed experimenting on the color combinations and fonts and background images. And so I have to warn you if it's your first time to do this, stay cool and don't be afraid to make your own explorations, too.

2. New Widgets in Blogger

I "accidentally" discovered new widgets created for Blogger, courtesy of one blogger who wrote about it (am so sorry I couldn't recall who wrote it but I'd like to say thank you to the writer of that blog). Prior to this "discovery" I only saw 2 new widgets whenever I open the "Add a page element" in the Template window: the Slideshow and the Poll. (It's only now am I beginning to realize that "blogger" and "blogspot" are still two different things, tho they seem to be related ... but I don't know how).

You can try this yourself to see a different set of "new widgets" for Blogger.

First, you have to open your blogspot URL, then click here or type on the same box where you entered your site's URL. You can try it now and that should take you back to your Dashboard. I know it still looks the same but soon you will see the difference.

When you click 'Layout' in your Dashboard and after clicking 'Add a page element', you should see these additional new items in the pop-up window -- Google Gadgets, Subscription Links and Search Box, in addition to the 2 other new widgets I've mentioned earlier.

If you want to try them out, you can choose one and follow the instructions procedures in adding a new page element in your blog. I, myself, have installed the "Subsciption Links" and "Search Box" in this blogsite.

3. Creating a "Recent Comments" for your sidebar

For the past months, I've been looking for a widget to show recent comments from readers who come to visit my site. Here's one link that I strongly recommend for it's simplicity and easy-to-install procedure. Just click on this to get your "Recent Comments" widget from Blogger Templates.

That's all for now. I hope these few tips would be able to help you make those improvements to your blogsite.

Once again, I'd like to express my appreciation for the efforts and creativity of those who gave time to create these helpful widgets. For sure, I cannot do them myself. I'm just passing on what I learned from them.

Related Links:

In case you got some questions or something you may want to add on this entry, please post them either as comments below or you can leave a message in my Guestbook by clicking here.

Thanks a lot for visiting!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Zen amidst flurry of meetings and beating deadlines

Being caught inside the trap of stressful living is one of the things I have long given up that moment I decided to give up having a full-time job.

Recently, when I saw myself irritated and mad as hell over mundane things I realized I haven't fully given up my typical response to stress yet.

Looking back now I can't help but smile while remembering my anger upon seeing our cats' poop all over the litter box without enough granules to cover them. Oh this really stinks!!!

Or that moment I found out I left my ATM card at home while already in front of the ATM machine. I made a short stopover here while on my way to an important meeting as I didn't have enough cash to pay the cab driver to get me to the place for this meeting.

My 'all-four-seasons-in-one-day' mood swing is keeping me company again. Though I appreciate the adrenaline rush that goes with it, it also depletes my energy before I am even finished with my tasks for the day.

"I want to feel appreciative and positive," was my mantra yesterday, at least to maintain my energy level and maybe have enough supply of it during the meeting. Soon enough, I saw this mini-garden just beside the conference room of this soon-to-be-blessed new office of CODE-NGO. Slowly I went out through the sliding door (shown in the picture on the left), and took a few shots while waiting for the others to arrive.

Blue flowers always catch my attention wherever they may be, be it on a hillside or found hanging on a tree as shown in the picture below.

And how these leaves seem to be smiling as sunlight started to beam on them ...

While looking around, I saw this lone white flower so small and so dainty-looking ...

And big pebbles that show they haven't been threaded on much yet ...

Beautiful, isn't it? Or is it just my mood that's influencing my perception?

The pictures shown below were taken early this afternoon while walking in one of the side-streets perpendicular to Makati Avenue. I was greatly amazed to find this 'landscaped garden' on the side of Best Western Astor Hotel while all around it are the tall buildings that mark the city of Makati (as can be seen reflected on the glass wall). This garden is mounted 4-feet above the sidewalk that I had to stand on my toes to find a nice angle for these shots.

Oh by the way, you can click your mouse on the pictures to view them in a larger format.

It worked!!!

I felt a lot better ... and was able to go through the series of meetings the past 2 days without my 'topak' (bad mood) ... met new acquaintances ... and enjoyed the warm energy shared by participants in these events.

But most of all, it felt wonderful to be able to have my 'powerful nap' upon arriving home this afternoon.

I guess, even if we are
already so, so tired, we can always find something to appreciate in everything around us ... if we are only able to set our minds, our eyes, and all our other senses to it.