Tuesday, 12 March 2013

10 Random Acts Of Kindness To Try Today

I'm a sucker for cute videos. I watched this last night whilst I was stuck in one of those "I've gone down a trail of links on the Internet and can't remember how I got here" type situations.

It reminded me of a blog post idea that I had: Random Acts Of Kindness.


Here are ten ways to spread a little love without inconveniencing yourself or your day. I hope you will do something nice for someone today. Sometimes a little boost, or even just a smile, can really make someone's day.

1. Smile at someone you don't know. You'll feel like a crazy person. They will look at you like you are mad. But as they walk away they'll be thinking "Why do I think it's weird for someone to smile at me?" not "That person must be crazy to smile at me". And they, hopefully,will go and smile at someone else. Try it!

2. Put that 1 penny change in the charity box at the checkout. Then go and add the charity (even if you have never heard of it) on Facebook or Twitter. Often local (and nationwide) charities are extremely grateful for every single follower to help spread their message.

3. Send a card to a relative who you haven't seen in years. Include a brief update on how you are getting on and a return address. Don't have the address for anyone? Elderly family members are excellent sources of actual, real-life addresses. They have address books because they don't have smartphones.Fact.

4. Pay someone a compliment, completely out of the blue. A few weeks ago a girl came up to me and "I love your shoes".t I was thrilled with the compliment.. Other peoples validation of your taste can go a long way, offer the same boost in confidence to someone else. A simple "I love your bag, it looks great with that coat" or "That jumper really matches your eyes" will genuinely make someone's day.

5. Suggest that your followers on twitter add someone you know with a few followers who is trying to grow their business or online presence. Try saying something like "Have you followed @katy_clouds yet? She posts amazing content on leading a positive life!" They will really appreciate it, and may do you a similar favour when they achieve social media stardom!

6. Not every Random Act Of Kindness has to involve getting something back for your trouble. If you walk past someones garden every day, and they always have a beautiful display of flowers, why not post an anonymous card through their door with a note saying "I love your garden, it makes me smile every morning".

7. Take a pack of doughnuts into your workplace. This works especially well on rainy Monday mornings when everyone wants to be in bed. No one can resist a squidgy doughnut.

8. If you see someone struggling for the right change on the bus, and your pockets are heavy with small money, help them out. There's a worry of being knocked back, but it really doesn't hurt to offer, especially if it is only a few pennies. Someone will do the same for you one day, promise!

9. Call someone on the phone who lives on their own - it's sometimes hard spending evenings alone, a friendly call for a chat could brighten up someones lonely evening.

10. Leave enough change in a payphone for the next person to make their call without having to pay. This also works on vending machines! I've seen pound coins taped to the sanitary product machine in public toilets, and twenty pence pieces left in gumball dispensers - imagine what a happy bunny you would be if you needed to make an emergency call, or had another type of emergency :-)

I hope these ideas have inspired you to do something kind and random for someone today. If you need more ideas this is one of my favourite websites to have a browse of .

Friday, 8 March 2013

Spring Wishlist


Spring is my favourite season, it's filled with chocolate and the promise of summer. I can't help lusting over new things that I know I can't have...




1. I actually have this in two colours, now I want Celestial. Best lip colour ever.

2. Sometimes you see something utterly ridiculous but you just want it anyway, from Topshop

3. I wish this jumper wasn't sold out, it would be perfect with denim hotpants for rollerskating :-)

4. My search for the perfect bag is over with this beauty

5. I'm loving textured nail polishes at the moment, and this is my dream colour

6. Confession. I sometimes go into Debenhams just to spritz this on my wrists

7. Oasis is my favourite clothing store in the UK by far, their style just resonates with me. I need this skirt.

8. I've loved Anna Lou of London for years, these bangles rock 


Thursday, 7 March 2013

Add A Handwritten Signature To Your Blog Posts With Picmonkey

A handwritten signature adds an extra pop of personality to your blog posts. I used Picmonkey to create the perfect little snippet for the end of my posts. Here how I did it :-) 

                               

All of these steps can be done without a premium membership, but I highly recommend you grab one, they are so cheap and worth it for the extra effects and fonts you get to play with. 
Start by filling a white piece of paper with your signature. Try adding little florishes or doodles. I made my 'y' a little loopier and tried out a cute heart. I would strongly recommend against using the signature that you use on paperwork - make it different.
Scan your page in. You can use a scanner at your local library if you don't have one at home!


Open up your image in Picmonkey. Choose your favourite version of the signature. Don't forget there are lots of tools to help you perfect this step. If like me, you write on a slant, there is a 'Straighten' tool under the 'Rotate' option.




See in the bottom corner there is a little scale slider? Make sure that is at 100%. It might look huge depending on the scanner settings, but you can adjust the size later.


Select the crop tool and use it to section off the area that you want to use. I would crop it as close to the actual writing as you can without chopping any off. Save as a .JPG.


Open up a new image. If you don't know how to make a blank image I described a simple way here. Select 'Overlays'. We are going to use the Use Your Own feature to adjust our signature. Click the button marked 'Your Own'. Select your saved signature file.


This is where Picmonkey really comes into it's own. You can now manipulate the overlay in any way that you want. You can chance the colour using the selector in the Overlay toolbox, make it as big or as small as you like.


Make sure your zoom slider is set to 100% so that you can see a realistic view of what your signature will look like on the page. I went for a simple grey colour :-)


Crop the image right down again once you are happy with the design. Save as a .JPG.

Now, all you need to do is add your signature to your blog posts. There are two ways. You can click the link below for your blogging platform and follow the instructions. Or you can simply manually add the image to each post that you do.

Blogger

Wordpress

Typepad

Let me know if you found this tutorial helpful, or if you have any questions, I'd be more than happy to help.


Tuesday, 5 March 2013

9 Articles To Improve Your Online Presence

Why Social Media Is Awesome Quick Tips Get people reading your blog Bounce Rate 101 Social Media Promotion Online Popularity Community Management Banish Negativity Twitter Followers Image Map
Following one of my own tips, I thought it was time for a round up of my favourite recent Social Media and Blogging articles. All of these offer tips and ideas for improving your online profile. I hope you will have a read of one and leave a comment.

 If you are interested in making an image map like this for your own blog, I did a full tutorial on it here.

 Katy x

Random Hiatus

Well that was an unplanned and unexpected hiatus. I kind of got sidetracked celebrating Radio Dacorum's first birthday. Here are some photos from our event...


The second picture is me dressed up as a giant cat. Don't believe me?


Yes. It was a great time though, I love being part of Radio Dacorum - have a look at the local television short that we took part in here if you want to see me dressed as a bear and dancing like a relatively crazy person.

Normal service will be resumed very shortly. I have an amazing Picmonkey tutorial lined up once I manage to renew my premium membership over there, and I also have the full round up of my 29 Days Of Mum And Boy photo project.

I hope you have a beautiful day!

xx

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