Monday, September 28, 2015

Bitten, Progress, Weddings and Changes, Oh My...

This has been a busy past few weeks, which is why I haven't shared much on myself until now. With weddings and prep for them and just regular life. Additionally, like always I take on way too much in other things, that pretty much leave me always wondering, what the heck was I thinking.  Do you ever do that to yourself too?


I'm starting to sound like a broken record on the work injury so I am not going to bore you with details.  I will just leave you with one word for now, PROGRESS...


I hate to say this, but I will.  It's killing me just a little bit seeing my friends FB posts on their races they have been running, or their final training prep for their fall marathons in a few weeks.
Don't get me wrong, I am thrilled for them and couldn't be happier for them.  But I've been on the sidelines unable to do them far too long and it's hard to hear and watch when all I want to do is be doing them with them!


BITTEN, ya a week ago I was decorating for an outdoor wedding up on the side of a mountain and something bit me.  I got this huge welt on my leg, and it burned, itched (still does a little).  I was going to show you a picture, but then it occurred to me, it doesn't look so great so I will spare you the visual:)  Your Welcome!
Let's just say, it's been all sorts of shade of reds, purples.

I assumed I was bitten by a spider or possibly a scorpion, based on the information I found on google and where I was at. I ruled out anything dangerous on my own.  But will admit by day 4, when it started taking on some deeper colors I did break down and visit a Dr.
Granted, I went to an instacare, and the Doctor was less than helpful in some ways.  He was just one of those, get em out quick guys....  Well, he did exactly what I did.  He pulled up some pictures off the Internet and ruled out everything I had already done, and came up with the exact same diagnosis I already had assumed, LOL
Truthfully, I only went to the Dr. because it turned to a very dark color and to make sure I was right and I wasn't going to eventually have some flesh eating bite that I mis-diagnosed, because that would be bad! LOL

In short, who knows exactly what bit me.  But based on what we know and how it looks, both myself and the Dr, agreed it was probably a Black Widow.
Despite what people think about the spider, if you don't get the cramping and vomiting, you don't even have to go to the Doc if your bit by one.  You just get to suffer through the lighter reactions, in fact I was told no one has died from one in like 10 years:)  Yay for good medicine!

So ya, I was given some itch relief cream (which I don't really find works.)
I won't be wearing shorts or a skirt for a while.
I was told it will eventually go away (sooner would be better than later.)  Frankly, I just want it to quit itching!!!! I can't even say that enough!!!

So ya note to self, if I am climbing, crawling around in peoples backyards for weddings again.  I am so, duck taping my pant to my sock and I won't even care about the looks anyone gives me for doing it!
Just the thought that a spider crawled up my leg and bit me, and I didn't notice at the time just freaks me out a little more than you'll ever know!  (I hate spiders, always have!)

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I wish I had more excitement to share.  But I will say, I am done with weddings for a few weeks, so I fully intend on playing.
I got to decorate one of my (what is becoming) my favorite backdrops.  It's also the one that takes me more hours than you want to know, to decorate.
Here is a before (above) and after (below).
It may not look like it takes much time, but getting all the greenery, floral and ribbon weaved into it takes hours and hours!  I actually LOVE this backdrop!

Wedding Backdrop AFTER


NEW BLOG HEADER, okay so you may have noticed or maybe not.  My new blog header.  I finally think I finished tweaking it the other day, and it is finished, YAY.
I actually made 8 versions of it, this was the one I decided I liked the best:)
Originally I hired someone to make one, but that was back in March and long story short, they dropped the ball.
I don't exactly have the graphic software I would love, but I took my time and did the best I could with the software I have, and what you see above (Okay here is a mini version below.) Is what I came up with.
I'd love your thoughts on it, good or bad all opinions are welcome!!


I wanted a header that was more ME, and what I blog about.
That shows what I do and plays off my true personality more!




Additionally I have made a few other BLOG CHANGES, that are less noticiable.  With font's, size, orientation, color.  On top of all that, I did a little blog clean up on the home page.
I have this huge list of things I want to do on this blog, so I put them on a priority list and I have been slowly working through them.
I could be wrong, but so far the flow is looking much better! If you noticed, what do you think?

One thing I understand HTML and some CSS so if I really want to, I can make even this simple free Blogger blog, do things that most only think can be done on self hosted blogs.
Although eventually I do want to go self hosted, but for now I will stick with this.
I am working (it takes time) on code to make other new changes, you may notice them over the next month as I finish working on them and set them live on the blog.

Last, I have finally chosen a new comment system.  It's been live for a few days.
I REALLY want to know what you think!

I went with Disqus, and it was not without a lot of contemplation.  It was actually between LiveFrye Disqus.
I hate the limited abilities the blogger comment system has, which is why I have been shopping for a new one again.  That and almost everyone I talk to hates using or commenting on the blogger system too!
I would love to go back to Intense Debate, I love that one best.  But they need to make it mobile friendly, and so far it is not!

The GREAT news is when I switched I was able to get ALL my comments back that I had lost when I switched from blogger to Intense Debate, and then back to Blogger again.  YAY, that made me SOOOO happy, you have no idea!
The bad part they are a little jumbled from the past, I am working on that!

Like all comment systems it has it's downfalls, but in case others are interested in switching I am working on a post that I will run soon that will explain why I picked what I did, and all the things I found out as I investigated all the different comment systems on the market.

So far, things seem to be running pretty good with it.  I am testing it for 1-2 months to see how others like or don't like it and how it all pans out.
So far, having the additional interaction with bloggers as they comment and see my replies in their IN box, has been fun and better than I thought, far more interactive and it's only been up since Thursday night! YAY!

Or, if you use another comment system that you love please share!  I am a blogger, which means I am always open to change and all thoughts and opinions and suggestions!


Leave you one more picture of the backdrop, just because I like this one so much!


I am linking up with HoHo Runs and Mississippididdlin today for their Weekly Wrap!




Have you ever been bit by a spider?  Did it creep you out as much as it has me?  

Do you have a blog comment system that is easy to use that you love and are willing to share the name of it with me?

What do you think of my blog changes and re-design?  Share even if you dislike, I really want honest opinions!

32 comments :

  1. The new blog header looks great! Love it!

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  2. That's creepy. I don't like spiders either and did see a Black Widow once when I lived in Arizona. Love the header too. I've thought about what I'd include, but I'm not artistic at all.

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  3. Wow, sorry to hear about the spider bite. Crazy that it probably was a black widow! I like your new header! It looks great!

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  4. A black Widow!! WHAT??!? That's crazy.
    Spiders are attracted to my husband - he is always getting bitten by them!
    I love those arches... BEAUTIFUL!
    I want to do a new blog redo but I'm clueless on these sorts of things. I couldn't even insert Disqus into my blog.. that's how pitiful I am

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  5. I know isn't it crazy and all sorts of creepy! I HATE spiders!!!
    Disqus was actually pretty easy. If your ever in the mood to do it reach out to me I can either help by email or phone. I would be happy to help ya. Really it will take you all of 1 minute if you've already signed up for an account. So far I am loving it!!!

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  6. Thanks Sharon! I know, I was all sorts of creeped out by it. Still am! Just looking forward to when all the skin heals and I dont have a 3 inch visual reminder of it lol

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  7. Oh I HATE spiders always have! Good yjing is I just had a normal reaction to it, despite how it looks lol... not that, that makes me feel any better about it:)
    Thanks! I am liking how it turned out too!

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  8. That's a beautiful arch you created and I am sure took a ton of work to do. Love the new blog header! Hope that spider bite is better-ouch. I am a little sad that I am not doing a long run this fall either but hey better to be running short than not running at all right?

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  9. I can't believe you got but by a black widow! I've always heard horrible things about those, so I'm glad to hear yours wasn't quite as bad.
    I know how you feel about watching ever one else doing their races and long runs, and it's hard to even read about it. That's how I was last year. You're time will come!! As alwsys, I'm amazed at how creative you are with your backdrops. Beautiful!!

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  10. Thank you, for some reason I just love doing the wedding arches:) Thanks also on the blog header compliment!
    You are right, a little running is better than no running, and hopefully in another month I may be able to start getting a little running in again and hopefully more and more!

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  11. I know, creepy crazy huh! Oddly, other than itching and a little burning it really wasn't all that bad, the Dr. said very few people have any different symptoms which is good I guess!
    You are right, I am just glad you are finally able to get back into it and your be running a marathon soon:) YAY!
    Thanks, on the backdrop compliment too, I seriously love decorating for weddings!

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  12. You know I love the new header!!
    O man that spider bite is scary! I am glad it wasn't anything more than what you thought, but don't you hate when doctors "google" your symptoms? I had one do that too me before and I was just shocked! Yea, I could have done that at home for free!

    Your. Wedding decor looks great! I'm surprised fall isn't a busier time for weddings out that way.

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  13. Thanks Meranda!
    Oh ya the spider bite thing was just super creepy, and I will be thrilled once the huge near baseball size bruising is gone! Ya the google thing, I mean in one way at least they cared, but in another I was like you said, like well I already did that, LOL
    Oh, fall is crazy busy for weddings out here, its a great time of year for them. But truthfully I purposely didn't schedule any for the next few weeks so I could take some vacation time and getaway, LOL:) I have my priorities, LOL

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  14. I like the new header! I always appreciate a blog I can see too. I don't think some bloggers realize how light (or weirdly colored) or small their blogs appear to others.

    Years ago, I had a coworker who was bitten by a spider and she lost most of her thumb. In fact they sewed her hand to her abdomen for a period of time so the skin would grow over her thumb bone. I'm glad you didn't have any real problems!

    I want a better commenting system. I'm interested to see how you like Disqus. Also, I'm probably not going to be able to run Chicago with my bad foot. It's going to be TOUGH to read about everyone's fall accomplishments. I'm happy to hear you are making progress.

    Sorry to go on so long, but I also wanted to add I was granted an entry into a REVEL race next year so I may be visiting Utah. And, that arch is beautiful. You do good work. Thanks for linking with us.

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  15. I always love when you share wedding pictures, such talent you have! I noticed the new blog header yesterday, very nice :) I hope you are feeling better with that bite, it will probably turn black and the skin may rot off- just watch t so it does not get infected. You and I have had some good ones this summer with the bites and stings, we may be long lost third cosuins or something! :)

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  16. I have come across a few, that are awesome bloggers but I have such a hard time seeing what they wrote because of the color scheme, it hard.
    OMG, I would seriously cry if my case was like your coworker, she must have been bit by a brown recluse or something, thank goodness that wasn't me. Black widow bites have venom, but the reaction or at least mine was more of an annoyance, I mean ya I have a terrible looking bruise about the size of a baseball, but I'll take it, especially hearing all the horror stories!
    I am really liking Disqus, I am actually going to be running a couple of blog comment posts you might be interested in since your shopping around. I am running one Thursday, and I'm working on another one for in a few weeks that explains how I shopped around, what I looked into etc... why I decided on disqus....


    Yay, I definitely want to see you if you come to Utah! I am actually going to be up in the canyon they run this race a bit later today, its so beautiful this time of year especially when the aspens turn their yellow colors!

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  17. Thanks, you are so sweet!!!
    Oh my gosh if that happened I would cry! I am kind of lucky, apparently my body handles poison pretty well:) Although it did turn purplish, black with brown last week, it was not looking great. Its never rotted or opened up, the blood vessels just broke up and they are healing now, I can tell even if its slow:) In fact right now it just looks like a big reddish bruise, all the darker colors fade a little more each day, YAY!
    But you're right, you've had a doosy of a summer with all your bites and stings, I honestly didn't mean to follow you in that, I would have much rather followed your awesome running this year instead, LOL Good think your trip to Italy didn't bring on any more!

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  18. i love your new header! and yuck to the bite. if it still itches, i highly recommend aveeno's anti itch bath packs. http://www.drugstore.com/products/prod.asp?pid=16475&catid=290055&aid=338666&aparam=16475&kpid=16475&CAWELAID=120142990000054905&CAGPSPN=pla&kpid=16475 i got 10 mosquito bites last week and this was the only thing that helped!

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  19. Tricia @ MissSippiPiddlinMarch 8, 2017 at 5:48 PM

    I DID notice the header first thing so yay for that attention getter! I do love it and think it fits your blog perfect! I been doing some tweaks and changes here and there too. I so wish I knew more about html and css but hey I have come a long way, just take my word for it, I HAVE! I had someone help me with swapping from Blogger to self-hosted WP and I do love it. When I want to do something I just google how to. There are so many more things I want to do but hey I'll have to put them on a list like your do! With the wedding I attended I did get to see a lot of the background planning and all and I thought of you and how I bet you could do some of this in your sleep! I love seeing the pictures of the things you create too! I would be more scared of the fact that a spider was on me than the actual bite anyway! I freaking hate spiders!!! I hate you've had things get in the way of your running and I do think 2016 is YOUR YEAR!!!! Thanks for linking up with us, appreciate you and always love to read your blog.

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  20. Thanks Courtney! The only thing they did give me was some prescription strength itch cream, which didn't work much but luckily I am over the itch now, YAY. Sorry about the 10 mosquito bites thats a crazy amount! But I do appreciate the tip on the cream, that I will probably use next year during camping season!

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  21. OMG, I would have died when I found out it was a black widow or a spider in general, I am petrified of them! I hope it is feeling back to normal soon that is so scary! I think the blog changes are looking good! I actually like the Disqus but I know a lot of people don't like to have to log in to comment. I don't mind because once I do it once it remembers the next time! And I love the blog header! Especially the US with the runner girls!!

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  22. I love the blog changes! I think your new header looks great - very fresh and fun :) I've actually never thought too much about comment systems for blogs. As long as I'm able to comment on the blogs I follow I guess I don't really pay much attention. Looking forward to your post on comment systems though - might lead to some new insight!

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  23. We have a ton of black widows around here. The pest control service said that you have to spray them on contact, so they're really hard to get rid of completely. That's scary! I hope I never get bit by one. Your header looks awesome! Also, the wedding decorations look beautiful! You are very talented!

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  24. Thanks Tricia, I really tried this time I wanted it to be far more about me, I am thrilled others like it too!
    hey, I am nearly all self taught on HTML, and completely self taught on CSS, I used to work a job where I was able to take a few classes for fun and I would have the IT guys teach me stuff so there was that, but I do the same thing, if I am not sure how to do something I google it, and if I can't find the answer there I have found that just having a little basic knowlege on things helps me fill in the blanks and figure it out!
    Oh, I HATE spiders I have forever, so this was beyond creepy, I still get chills just thinking a spider made its way up my pant leg without me knowing, Ughhhh!

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  25. Oh, I am so hateful and afraid of spiders, so this was like eeekkkk, yuckkk.. I still get chills thinking about it, and I wasn't kidding my next outdoor wedding I don't care how it looks I may just tape my pant legs to my socks if there is any chance I will be crawling on the ground to do any of the decor!
    I'm glad you like Disqus, I had the same thoughts, I wondered if it would detour comments since they had to log in, but we shall see what happens over the next couple of months, so far I don't see too much of a difference!
    Thank you, I have to say the US runner girls was the favorite component of it that I designed:)

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  26. Thanks sun!!!!
    I used to not give them too much thought either, until I started looking into them, taking a few wedinars, and I realized for blog growth it's a more vital part of the blog. But everyone has different goals and objectives so I think it's great there are so many choices on comment systems out there for us all to pick from!

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  27. You are so sweet, I really do love decorating for weddings!
    That is what I hear, I had a bunch of them start popping up in my shed a few years back, but I went in and sprayed it once a week for a month, and eventually I never had a problem again. This time I was up on a mountain, so there was opportunity for anything, even if it creeps me out:)
    Hope you never get bit by one too, it's probably just people like me that have the oddest bad luck at times!
    Thank you, I am glad you like the header, I had a lot of fun making this one and really like that others like it like I do:) I feel like I just said "like" a million times, sorry LOL

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  28. I have been bitten by a house spider. I was putting on my pj top and I was like what was that, then saw it, but it was too late it bit me.
    Hurt but I survived. I froze the spider in case I needed to go to the hospital.


    I've been making changes on my blog too, more so fixing seo on old blog posts. I still have about 30 old posts to go through. I've deleted quite a few, and fixed up over 200 other ones.
    It's slow, but it's worth it.


    I love the redesign, and I know what you mean about comment system. There are so many out there, but you'll find something that will tick all the boxes.

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  29. Nooooo! Spider bite!?!? D: I'm glad you noticed the bite and got it looked at! (I hope the itching has stopped too! :[ Tis the worst!)

    I love your new header! :] I've been trying to come up with a logo for my blog, but...still haven't gotten that far yet, haha.

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  30. Spider bites are just Creepy, sorry you have had to deal with one too!!
    That is awesome and SO smart! I need to do that especially on my more popular older posts, its on my to do list but haven't got to it yet:)
    I am glad you like the new design! I think we use the same comment system now, I am liking it so far I hope others like it:)

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  31. It was easy to notice it was the size of a baseball lol Its been getting better but tonight just started itching again. Drives me crazy and its been two weeks, it needs to be gone already lol
    Thank you!
    I am glad you like the new header. I did a lot of brain storming and eventually the idea came to pass lol. You have so many directions you could go and your blog already looks awesome so even if you don't come up with one for a while you still have something great! !

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