new theme

I’m very pleased with this nice, new theme they just announced. When I read in the email that it was Justin Tadlock who had created it, I immediately thought it was one of those premium themes, but not so! It’s free! Click the link for more info about it. I like also how my little Christmas animal came out in the header 🙂 Doesn’t take much to keep me amused!

I remembered his name from back when I had self-hosted WordPress. For a long time, I used one of his themes, called Structure. It was quite awesome, but somehow it all turned into a pay-site, and I found another good one. I like themes that have lots of features and options.

In connection to last night’s post about Christmas traditions, Swedish national TV announced today, that DonaldDuck will be streamed live online LOL. Only in real time, so I won’t be able to watch it at 3PM but rather 10AM due to the time difference.

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wordpress themes

They now have more than hundred and thirty themes to choose from. Last night, I read a very good post, that made me think a little deeper about the themes.

I moved here to wordpress.COM from having had a self-hosted wordpress blog before. The main reason for the move was this daily post challenge.  I’m still happy with that move as I’m still hanging on to my daily blog post.

I do like change, every now and then — sometimes just for the sake of it … a fresh look of my blog, and I like to think that the theme might reflect a little bit of me. Five, six years ago, I would have chosen a theme full of graphics … flowery backgrounds et cetera … now I’m back to the minimalistic, clean look. Perhaps that says something about me, I don’t know.

Since I moved in here in May, I’ve probably checked out each and every one of the hundred and thirty themes they have. Lately, I’ve noticed that I keep coming back to two: The current Mystique and Clean Home. Both of them have enough customization possibilities to keep me happy. By now, I know them inside out and it’s easy to apply a personal look and feel to them.

As soon as a new theme is being released, I check them out.  If they don’t have any customization at all, I just disregard them. Two things are important to me when I choose: Font and layout. I’m not a huge fan of Verdana. You can always make your actual posts in a different font, by typing in a little snippet of code each time, but in the long run I get fed up with it. Like this: This sentence is written in Verdana, 11px and the color is Crimson. I could do this each time I posted, if I felt like it or if I felt that it was that important. Well … I don’t! This blogging business is something I do for fun … it’s not a job. Having said that, one would perhaps think that it’s strange that I pay all this much attention to the details! Sadly, when a new theme has a lot of graphics … when it’s too far out for my taste, I tend to miss out on all the other possibilities that theme has to offer.

When they released Twenty Eleven, I was really impressed and I really had only one hang-up about that: The navigation bar. It’s pitch black.  I don’t like too much high-contrast [not too little either], and I don’t intend to pay $30 (!) a year for the pleasure of changing the color of the nav bar! 🙂 After all, I moved from self-hosted to free, and like I said in my post about email clients: I refuse to pay for something I can get for free elsewhere. Okay … I know I could get rid of the navigation bar entirely and put those links in the sidebar — that’s always an option but I kind of like having the bar.

Secondly, I don’t like themes where the main column is really narrow. Many of them are, and I don’t know why. I don’t think many people in today’s society have screens that are 800px. There is, at least, one theme where you have a really good choice: Under the Influence, but I have other issues with that … minor ones.

There’s a guy who has done an amazing write-up about how to get the most out of each theme. Here’s the link: http://wp.me/tD4e If you’re interested in this type of stuff, that page is a gold mine!

rearranging

These last few days, there’s been some re-arranging going on — both in my ‘real’ surroundings and my digital world.

When we moved in to this apartment, having emptied and left the house in Quebec, we had the chance to start from scratch almost, as we brought very little stuff with us. We said to each other that this place will be entirely for us … arranged with no regards to «what others might think» — we don’t have any plans to entertain here in this little apartment. So … only what was convenient for us, no matter what it looked like.

The drawing room is shaped like an L. One part is the dining area, nothing much to do about that part. Then there’s always the TV-set … you get sort of stuck with that, unless you have very long cables ‘n stuff. Besides, I don’t think we’d placed it elsewhere anyway. This picture is from when we’d just moved in and didn’t have any stuff at all. Dining area off to the right… outside the picture.

Gerry has some back problems, so he wanted his desk and a good, ergonomic chair. I wanted a couch, witch lots of cushions where I could curl up as much as I wanted. This was placed in the middle of the room, which caused a space to be unused … not taken advantage of at all, behind the couch. This has irked me, because that space tended to be a place where you put stuff that you didn’t know what to do with.

At the time, I had the desktop computer and that got a room of its own. Guess that worked alright … even though, deep down, I didn’t feel all that good about having to go in to another room each time I wanted to go online even though I had my little ‘sanctuary’ in there.

Then my laptop came into play in September, two years ago. When I unpacked it, I put it on the coffee table in front of my couch, and it never left. I’ve spent two years on that couch, I was almost growing roots there.

To make a long, tedious story a little shorter, we’ve now moved my desk into the drawing room … that space is now fully taken advantage of … by me! I have a very nice «computer corner» here behind the couch, I can still watch TV at the same time when I want to, or gaze out the windows. It was very hot [still is] when we made the move — I was sweating gumdrops, but I felt very pleased with the result.

Before I got totally lost in the description of our computer spaces, I mentioned the digital world too. Well … I don’t know how many of you who use Gmail as your major email client, but I’ve done that since day one. Now Google is going to do some general overhaul of the interface so that you’ll get the same experience no matter which part you’re in … Gmail, Google Calendar, Docs even Blogger … and you can already get a preview of it in Gmail by changing the theme. There’s a post about it here. So I did that, and it looks great. The bar with the buttons follow you down as you scroll, for one, which is very convenient.

WordPress released a new theme last night, that I’ve applied to my blog here. Usually I find something that I don’t like about those themes — most often that the main column is too narrow for my taste, or the navigation bar is pitch black. This new theme was all to my liking.

She’s back

Yesterday was the beginning of the cruise ship season here in Saint John. Carnival Glory arrived at 9AM with 3,500 passengers. That’s a lot of people for this little city. Before the season is over, 200,000 people will have visited Saint John. Usually the season ends with QMII — I haven’t checked out the schedule but I don’t think that has changed.

Carnival Glory goes back and forth from NYC to here … sometimes she comes here twice a week.

In the beginning of  the season, those ships look HUGE, but after a while you get so used to seeing them so they don’t look so big. Before we moved here … when we were only visiting, we used to stay in a hotel that had a view of the harbour. It was really cool to see these immense ships appearing in the fog! I took a few pictures then, but they were all shot through a window.

This guy was out again, and so are the pink double-decked buses … all eight of them!

Two years ago, I was walking around downtown, when a cruise ship was in, with my camera. A young couple asked if I could take a picture of them together with their little camera. Of course I could, and we started talking a little. I said to them that I can shoot a picture of you with my camera and email it to you. They were delighted. They were from Florida and I told them I’d been there in 1979 … the girl wasn’t even born then … and that I’d stayed in New Smyrna Beach. Turned out that was the little town where they lived!!! They even knew the street where my uncle and aunt used to live. Small world, huh?!

I took this because I liked the clouds

Yesterday, the Salvation Army came and picked up our old TV-set. As Gerry was talking with the guys, it turned out that one of them was the son of a guy who used to work with Gerry’s father … a longshore man. He was even a pall bearer on Gerry’s father’s funeral! Another ‘small world experience’!

I’ve applied the new WP-theme Twenty Eleven here on my blog. I’m not sure about it because I don’t like the pitch black navbar, but it has a lot of features. I’ll keep it for a while to see how I feel about it. I think many of the features they have applied to it, are too complicated for the average user … at least they are for me. This is really the theme Duster, that has graduated to become the default theme of WordPress. They’ve made the header image smaller, which is good … it was way too large before.Check it out! You might like it! With a click of the mouse you can turn it black or really dark gray too.