Posted in Blogging, Uncategorized

Happy 3rd Blogging Birthday!

Three years ago today, I launched a blog on my other domain, Sygnus.org. That blog has gone through various names and hosts over the past three years.

First it was just a fairly geeky blog at Sygnus.org. Then, I decided to name it Clean Casuals as it took on more of a gaming blog identity. Somewhere in there, I launched a more personal blog, which became this one. I then merged in the content from Clean Casuals into this one, and kept the name Aywren Sojourner.

Sometime last year, I got concerned with the inodes I was using up at my paid host and made a move to hosting at WordPress.com. So far, I’ve been content with this latest move and don’t foresee a reason to make another. Especially since WordPress has expanded the amount of storage we get for images.

So, yeah. Three years and I’m still consistently blogging, mostly on the weekdays. Because I’ve moved this blog so many times, I’ve lost the statistics that went along with it. That’s okay, though. Each year is a new one with more opportunities.

Thanks, as always, for stopping by and reading! Your visits, thoughts, and comments always mean a lot to me. Hopefully I can continue to write things that keep bringing folks back to read!

 

Posted in Black Desert Online, Blogging, Gaming, MMORPGs, Uncategorized

Black Desert Online Gaming Blog Banners

I didn’t realize a post about blog header banners would be of interest to so many folks! But because it was, I’m making a short follow-up on a few new banners I added this morning. Yesterday, I didn’t have my BDO screenshots on hand, but now that I do, I’ve whipped up a few more banners from that.

I couldn’t just choose one horse riding screen from the many, though. So I threw in two. I wish I had a good uncropped screen of my favorite dappled horse for this. I might have to hop in game and take some new shots. 🙂

The three new banners are below, all of my character Aywren in BDO:

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Posted in Blogging, Gaming

New Gaming Blog Banners

I’ve decided to start using rotating banners on the top of my blog. These were created from screenshots of various games I’ve played that have been of importance to me. I may add a few more for games like BDO, but until then, I just wanted to make list of the banners I’m using.

I even found a pretty good shot of the original Aywren Sojourner from Second Life! She was created on July 23, 2004. Back then, you could choose from a list of last names when making a new character in Second Life, and I chose Sojourner. The name has stuck over the years!

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Aywren Sojourner in FFXIV
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Zombie-Fighting Base in 7 Days to Die
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Aywren in Stardew Valley
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Moon from Skyrim
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Sims 4 – Alien Abduction 
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The original(!) Aywren Sojourner in Second Life
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Zuri Nimat in FFXIV
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TsuYa Tai in FFXIV
Posted in Blogging, Uncategorized

WordPress Personal Plan Storage Upgrade!

Last night, I heard my phone buzz.

I looked over and saw an alert from WordPress that said nothing but “Storage Upgrade!”

I got excited. I opened the app and saw this:

2016-12-19-22-23-04

I got very excited. I started looking around for more information. Sure enough, on the WordPress plans page, it notes that all free blogs still have 3 GB of space, but the Personal paid accounts now have 6 GB!

This is a huge deal! I say that because storage space was one limitation that worried me when I moved over to WordPress.com hosting.

I noted in my Moving Post:

3GB storage space for images is pretty low for me. I’ve been spoiled by having “unlimited” space for many years. Already, my blog has that over 40% full.

Now that I’m only using 21% of my storage space, I feel much more at ease about things, and much more content in the choice I made to move this blog here.

So, if you’re using WordPress’ Personal plan, you have an upgrade! If you’re using a free plan and are approaching the 3 GB limit, the Personal plan is a nice option to double your space for very little cost.

Posted in Blogging

Blogging Milestones: 1,000 Posts!

Yesterday, I received an announcement via WordPress that alerted me to the fact that I’ve published 1,000 posts on this blog. Somehow, I’d lost track of that and wasn’t paying any attention to my post number.

So, for a blog that’s going on 3 years old, that’s not too bad. Granted, this includes random YouTube videos, posts of my art and that sort of thing, too. However, I’ve removed a good chunk of content in the form of my Sims stories, because I wanted to divide that away from the main blog. I figure it equals out.

When I moved to WordPress.com about a month ago, it lost all my Followers and Likes. I actually had a good number of Followers to lose, so that was a bit annoying – if you followed me before, you’ll need to follow me again!

So, I’m building those up again, and have hit these milestones:

20followers

50likes

Again, not too bad for being here less than a month.

WordPress Reader

I’ve also discovered that when you have a WordPress.com hosted blog, you get the benefit of being connected to the Reader section. This is similar to Tumblr’s dashboard, where you can search by tags and follow blogs you enjoy… just a bit less cluttered and over-saturated.

In fact, I like this a whole lot better than a Tumblr because you can actually find interesting posts and new blogs to follow. The quality seems a good bit better than the constant stream of micro-blogging you see in Tumblr, too. Not to mention, you can have the best of all worlds if you attach a WordPress.com blog to a Tumblr account via sharing.

Boom! All the blogging! 

So, I’m happy that I made the jump over to WordPress.com as a host, if only to have that sense of a social media connection in the background for my blog. I know that I’ve discovered a number of blogs the past month, and other people have discovered me… who would have never found me otherwise as a self-hosted blog.

Blog on! 

Posted in Blogging

Making a Move

 

So, things look a little different around here, huh?

Yeah, remember how I was discussing the issues I’ve been having with inodes on my website host? Well, one of my thoughts was to move this blog to a separate host since it takes quite a bit of resources on the server.

I did some looking around and comparing, and as crazy as it sounds, I discovered moving my blog to a WordPress.com account was actually the best option for me. So why would I choose to move my self-hosted blog that had all the freedom of plugins and theme customization to a place where I’d lack all those things?

Here’s my thoughts on that.

First. I don’t want another Baby Croc plan. I don’t want to fork over another $12 a month just for one blog.

Well, there’s a lot of different hosts that tout WordPress hosting at a low price. They start you out at $2.00-something a month, and they catch you at the checkout by making you pay 36 months up front or something. And then, upon renewal, they jack the price up to $12 a month or more. I’m looking at you HostGator.

Some of them have a cap on how many visitors you can get in a month. I’m looking at you, BlueHost. So what happens if you have a popular post and you break 10K visits? Does your site shut down for the rest of them month? Do you pay a fee? Yeah, no.

So, a WordPress.com account is free. But I obviously wanted to use my domain name, so I ponied up the $2.99 a month for a year to have that.

The transfer went well. I have a huge site, and transferring the images took two days as the migration tool takes a loooong time, and I decided transferring a month at a time was best.

I did find a free theme that I liked, so that’s a plus. The lack of plugins isn’t as restricting as I thought it would be. Turns out there’s a lot of plugins I don’t really need.

The two things that I’m not so happy about is the lack of FTP for image retrieval and the low storage space.

Without FTP, all I can do is export media to another WordPress blog. This means that I’m going to have to be more careful about archiving images just in case I ever decide to make another move.

3GB storage space for images is pretty low for me. I’ve been spoiled by having “unlimited” space for many years. Already, my blog has that over 40% full. However, if I ever get to the point that I need more, I suppose I could upgrade, and it would still be cheaper than self-hosting.

The one positive is that all the traffic and resources that my blog has been generated is moving off of my self-hosted server. So it’s less I have to be concerned about. Hopefully keeping my domain will make it a smooth transition and no one will need to update links or anything.

I’ve discovered a few of my older posts are missing pictures from when I migrated from Clean Casuals to Aywren.com, and I’m fixing them as I have time. That was an issue even back on the self-hosted blog that I wasn’t aware of, though.

So far, so good. As long as WordPress.com remains reliable, I think this is a change for the better.