Well, folks, I’ve just downloaded Windows Live again, and it’s even better (and easier) than ever!

It’s all updated, super-whizzy, with free One Drive cloud storage etc – you can also sync this between your other computers, tablets or phones!

Here’s the new overview for Windows Live Writer (which I’m using to write this blog entry – no need for Word or Office etc to be on your computer). This version is even set up to work with Windows 10!

You can even create an online album.

It does need to be downloaded, so go here: and untick anything you don’t want (Live Mail? Movie Maker?)
It even adds a copyright to your pictures!

Yes, I'd say this is a 'Must Have' ....


We all love Pinterest, but when you start you don't necessarily plan how your boards are going to load up. As you think of a board, you create it and then pin to it ... and they arrange themselves in date order as you add them.

This is great, until suddenly you have a lot of boards, and a lot of pins ... and it all starts looking very confused and messy. So you'll be really glad to know it's very easy to rearrange things - if a little time consuming. Plus it helps if you can spell, lol.

All you need to do is click on the header area of the pin you want to move, which highlights it ...

... and then drag and drop it into position! Voila!

You may find it'll move around a bit as the other boards try to rearrange themselves, but don't worry about it. Get it into the general area you want it (especially if moving a pin from the bottom of your home page area, way up to the top) and then fine tune the positioning.

I've now rearranged all my boards (and deleted a couple which had hardly any pins in) so they're a lot easier to see, and less confusing to the eye.

Job done!


I'm not closing this blog - but I am aiming to totally reorganise it.

Many tutorials are now out of date, as Blogger has changed so much over the past 18 months, so they aren't even relevant any more.

And many of my computer tutorials are for Windows XP, so again very out of date. I'll reorganise these and re-label them, as I know many people are still using XP and very happy with it. Ditto tutorials for Windows 7.

So do keep coming back - and forgive me if it's a bit of a mess - hopefully it'll be much improved as soon as I have some spare time to sort things out, declutter etc.

Watch this space!

How to add links in your posts

You can see the two links here

I've had an email asking me how to add links in a post. I've written and published the tutorial on my 1stfloorflat blog, and am repeating it here as well.

This really isn't as hard as it looks! Here's how I do it...

First, type the words you want to link. For argument's sake, we'll say I want to go to a tutorial I have on my Computery blog.

First, highlight and COPY the url - this is the address you want the link to go to.

Highlight the words or phrase you want to use to make your link, then click on the Link icon in the top toolbar of your posting area.

Next, type your post. Highlight any word or phrase you want to use as the link, like I have done here.

Clicking on the LINK icon in the posting area will bring up the EDIT LINK box. The text you typed will display in the top TEXT TO DISPLAY box. If you don't like the wording, you can type something else in here, which will immediately change the text in the post for you.

You've already copied the url you want the link to go to - now paste it into the WEB ADDRESS box.

You may want to tick the OPEN THIS LINK IN A NEW WINDOW box before you click OK. This means the link will open in a separate page when clicked on. If you don't tick this, you'll find your blog changes to the new link url, and people will need to remember to use their back arrow to get back to you.

If you want to make your link really stand out, highlight the words or phrase in the post and then click the BOLD and ITALIC buttons, like I've done here.

Finally, I'm adding the link again here (to save you scrolling back up this post, although you can if you want, just to see I've done it all 'live', as it were).

Hope this helps!

HOW TO REMOVE a blog background, button or blinkie

I've had an email asking for help in removing my freebie blog backgrounds (see my Blogology link under the header if you'd like one). It's very straightforward - just delete the widget! But for those of you who are a little nervous, here's a comprehensive guide...


Go to your Dashboard and click on Layout in the sidebar, as shown.

Particularly when you just start to blog, you see all these freebie backgrounds and blinkies, and want to experiment with them.

Virtually any blog will tell you how to add them: copy the code and paste it into an HTML widget on your blog (it's best to add it down near the footer as this helps the blog to load faster for some reason).

Look for the correct HTML widget - you may have a few, so just keep clicking on them in turn until you find one that looks something like the above. Click on REMOVE - and that's it! You've removed that background.
But a lot of blogs won't tell you how to REMOVE them! It's basically as simple as going into your Dashboard and clocking on Layout, then finding the HTML widget and deleting it. Just keep clicking on the various widgets in turn until you find the right one, then click the Remove button - and that's it! Job done.


Look for the code, then go ahead and click Remove to get rid of the widget.

The code for these looks a little different, but they're still just HTML widgets. Click on each widget when in Layout view until you find the correct one, then click Remove - and it's gone. Don't forget to click on the orange Save Arrangement button if you move things around whilst you're in tidying-up mode.

Alternatively, when looking at your blog, you'll see a tiny hammer&screwdriver icon at the bottom right-hand corner of any widget  - which means you can edit the widget in blog view instead of going via your Dashboard to the Layout view. Again, click on the Remove button to delete that button or blinkie. This is actually the easier way to do it, as you can see exactly what you want to remove without having to hunt for it.


This is a picture widget - looks a little different, but the principle is the same.
Just as simple to remove!

Here's another widget variation. Just as easy to remove!

I've also posted this on my 1stFloorFlat (main blog) and Blogology site, so everyone can see it. Hope this helps!

PINTEREST - how to move items you saved to the wrong board

Have you ever saved something to Pinterest and realised you pinned it to the wrong board? I know I have, and it's so annoying!

Here's the easy way to move the item to the correct board the EASY way!

Hope this helps!


Added 30 Jan 3013:
I've had an email about the new template layout and labelling. So here you are - hope this helps!
Adding lables with the new dashboard layouts
You still need to add the Label widget in your sidebar, but you'll now be able to update labels on old posts by Updating rather than republishing.

NOTE - some of the suggestions below may help, but you'll find a lot now out of date.
I've had a query on how to label your blog posts - and why you'd want to!

Easy peasy - just go to Design > Page Elements view and follow the two pix below.

Click on 'Add a Gadget', select the 'Labels' widget and add it right into your sidebar. That's it!
Make selections to fine tune your widget to how YOU want it (see below).

Because it helps people can find particular items easily, without having to scroll through post after post after post, trying to find that item that caught their eye a while ago.

For example: you saw an ATC, and want to see more of them. If the link under the post has a label, eg: ATC, then you just click on it and a whole page of ATCs appear, as if by magic. Blogger shows every post with an ATC label, in one scrollable page. Brilliant!


Label your posts in the little white 'Labels' box, just under your posting area. Just type them in, but make sure you separate each one with a comma, or you'll have one very long continuous one!

If you already typed some labels, they'll be saved. So no need to separate these with a comma.

You'll see all the labels show under that post when you've published it.

And here's how those labels under the post translate to that widget in the sidebar.


This is so easy to do - when I started, I labelled everything in sight! Now I've got so many that it's confusing. Here's what you do:

Go to Edit Posts view, and you will see all those labels in the left column. Blogger tells you here how to edit multiple labels at once, so you can relabel, unlabel, a whole bunch of posts all in one go!

Hope this helps!


PicMonkey's landing page - as you can see, it's free free fee!
I've decided PicMonkey - a free online image editor - is the greatest thing since sliced bread! When you look at what I've done here... all I can say is that it would probably take me the best part of a day to reproduce all these effects, when it's taken me around 20 minutes to do BOTH pictures!

Image from the Windows 'Sample Pictures' folder (which came with my  Windows 7)
Size is 1024 x 768 pixels, 606 KB
After I played around in PicMonkey. Saved at 1092 x 796 pixels, 775 KB
Not hard at all - I just played around with all the special effects! The ticket came in the Overlays > Labels section in the sidebar. Click on an image, hold down the shift key and you can tweak the horizontal or vertical as desired. Click on the image and drag the points at the corners to resize the entire image.

Image from Life is Beautiful on Tumblr: size 500 x 500 px, 189 KB
The finished result: 610 x 719px, 84.6 KB
Another image
Image from Life is Beautiful on Tumblr, size 400 x 287 px, 25.7 KB - pretty low resolution

The finished result - you can tell I like that italic font. Size is 356 x 419px, 44.4 KB

TWO SHORT VIDEOS I've made, showing what I did and how I did it. Just to give you a few ideas.

Showing the final tweaks and finished result:

Original image from Life Is Beautiful on Tumblr

SIZE MATTERS - oh, yes, it does!

Mamarog left a comment on my original PicMonkey post, asking whether you save your PicMonkey at a large size when you save, ready to download back to your computer. Yes you can!If you upload at a large size, you can save as a thumbnail, medium size or large size (there's a choice of three sizes, all with names - see above). 

Common sense suggests:
If you upload a smaller size, like the tumblr image, then I'd advise you save at small or medium in case of pixellation (which can look very cool... if it's what works with that particular image...). Just look at the captions under the pictures to see the original and saved sizes. As you only have 3 choices, they won't be exactly the identical size, but near enough not to matter. The largest size (Russell) is a high enough resolution for excellent results when printing.

I hope this helps, and you'll have fun with this wonderful programme!


Pic from Heidi - and I've lost the link to her blog! Waaaah!
 Well, you would hardly believe it... but I've just moved 1stFloorFlat back with Blogger again!

I really have tried - over several months in fact - but just cannot get along with, the self-hosted form Word Press (and as I found out, very very different from The .com one was difficult enough... but is a whole new ballgame. I had to download everything - even a spam checker! All the standard stuff is built in with Blogger, TypePad, Tumblr and WordPress. com, so it was rather a shock. And difficult enough to even get the blog installed - I had to have help from my hosting service because it was totally beyond me!

WordPress is very different in feel and approach, and I seriously think is more for computer buffs rather than someone who just wants to write a few posts and share some art work, like we do. So it's a big relief to be back on Blogger - I feel more comfortable already.

So... how do you go back to Blogger? There is not much help out there - I Googled over a period of weeks, off and on, before I found the essential links.

Step 1: Export your blog

This is the ONLY LINK out there that works - thank you David Haimes, from the bottom of my heart! (Read his full post - carefully!)

This isn't even as simple as you would think - if you also have pages, and possibly a landing page, don't even attempt to click the Download All button when you try to export your blog. This is because you can't import your blog in one step - and if it's too large, the process will fail immediately.

Choose the Posts option only, and set the dates of the posts you want to transfer.

The conversion process (see Step 2) can only handle a maximum of 1MB - so you may need to split your downloads into smaller chunks (say a year's worth of posts at a time. If that's still too large, try 6 months' worth of posts).

Now save the xml file to your desktop.

Step 2: Convert your files 

Wordpress2Blogger conversion tool
This is the ONLY LINK that will convert your files into a format Blogger will recognise. You absolutely cannot skip this step!

  • Click on the link and then Browse for that xml file you just placed on your desktop.
  • Press the Convert button and wait... and wait... and wait....
  •  Dowload the converted 'Blogger-export' file to your desktop.

Step 3: Go to Blogger and import your new file

You now have a 'Blogger-Export' file on your desktop, and this is the one you will import into Blogger.

Go to your Dashboard, then Settings. You'll find this link in 'Basic' - the very first tab.
Go to your Dashboard > Settings and the very first item you will see, under the very first tab, is the link to click to import your blog.

Browse for that 'Blogger-Export' file, fill in the two word verification prompts, hit the Import button and wait (fingers and toes crossed). You have the option to click 'Publish' immediately, or let your posts save to Draft. I'd say to take the second option as your picture sizes may be all over the place (mine were all enormous - stretching over and beyond the sidebar) and any captions may need editing - with mine, the computer code showed. So that was a lot of cut&pasting, to have them show at the correct size and underneath my images. You may also have to put in labels.

My own blog was pretty big (I've been blogging since 2008) and I decided not to upload the earliest stuff as most of it isn't relevant any more, as Blogger has changed so much.

Even so, I still had to download from WordPress in several separate sections, then convert that section, import it into Blogger, then go and do the same for the next section. Not difficult, as I now had the correct links - but very time consuming. And nerve wracking... my web server reset itself, right in the middle, and I had to start over again. Anyway, job done! Whew!


Sara Wittenberg had a real problem in that her transfer wasn't showing, in spite of repeating my steps above several times. Well, I'm happy to say all is well - do read her comments below (5th and 6th November). 

Sara says:
... try it, wait 24 hours to see if they appear before trying again. Now I'm going through and deleting all the duplicates!
So all's well that ends well. I know from experience that sometimes major changes (whether Blogger, Yahoo, WordPress etc) sometimes seem to take a full working day to take effect. I wonder whether everything is scheduled to happen at midnight or something, lol.


Hello Brio Studio has also reverted from back to Blogger - you might like to go and read it here!

It's great to see I'm not the only one, lol...


Copyright The Socher Team
The 'before' - photo copyright The Socher Team
The 'after' - photo effects by me, using PicMonkey
PicMonkey - it's free, it's easy and you do all your editing online! Magic!

Anne of El Milagro Studio , who is a total angel, sent me this fabulous link for PicMonkey. As we know, Google has gotten rid of PicNik, and this programme replaces it - and is a thousand times better in my opinion! Here's how: just follow the thumbnails in order (click for full size) and don't forget to click the green 'Apply' button.

Fun, huh?