Tag Archives: WordPress

2015: My new writing focus and challenge

I have been absent for over a year from this site. I had only planned to be away for a few weeks.

Thank you for some of you who regularly checked on me.

Thank you for those of you who continued to write and inspire me.

I’m still reading some blogs, especially ShimonZ through his blog the human picture. In ShimonZ’s writing and through his lenses, I see Jerusalem, the everyday life of the people and animals, and ponder over some terribly sad episodes over the last year.

It’s wonderful to know Tilly still enjoys writing and reciting poems. She cried over her son leaving home, watched her son performing, and even decorated her room, in her blog dedicated to sharing the laughter: The Laughing Housewife.

I’m so proud that Nicki Chen successfully published her gripping novel, Tiger Tail Soup. I’ve read the book and would highly recommend it to you. In the past year, Nicki’s blog Behind the Story never fails to entertain (lots of food), and carry me with her on her fascinating recollections of the past, from the East to the West. Continue reading

12 Reasons Why You Need Lorelle’s Blog Exercises for Your Blog

The Teachers’ Day in Singapore is on the 6th of September this year. In China, since 1985, Teachers’ Day is on the 10th of September each year. Distinguished Chinese essayist and philosopher HAN Yu (韩愈) from the Tang dynasty explained the roles of a teacher in only six Chinese character, in his famous essay, “On the Teacher”(师说).

The roles of a teacher by HAN Yu, in my translation, are to

  • Guide students, show them the direction (传道, literally, spread the ‘Tao’).
  • Impart knowledge to students, to improve their abilities. (授业)
  • Resolve the students’ doubts. (解惑)

In my blogging existence, I follow the guidance from the best teacher, Lorelle. Since I’ve done 40 posts inspired by Lorelle, I would like to give you 12 reasons why you need Lorelle’s Blog Exercises for your blog. Continue reading

At 30 – a milestone to set my site goals

This morning, I woke to find that my mother-in-law had just subscribed to my blog.

My initial response was: “Oh no! Have I written something that my mother-in-law shouldn’t read? ”

No, but a brief moment of panic was my natural reaction. Actually my very first post was inspired by my mother-in-law. I shouldn’t have panicked. I sent her an email to thank her for her subscription.

I should not have worried about my close relatives reading my blog. I never use my blog to write anything that I would regret in real life. Most of my friends don’t know that I write, and those who know are not regular readers. Who do I write for? My blog is a welcoming, open cafe, which attracts a like-minded audience, who indulges in the comforting aroma of freshly brewed fine tea from China and the grinding sound of dark-roast coffee beans from Italy. They stay because this cafe with a difference suits their temperament. Continue reading

The process of creating Site Table of Contents

Yesterday I achieved my massive Site Table of Contents in this post, My Site Table of Contents – I did it! Today, I’m going to share with you how I created it, and the benefits of spending a weekend organising my site.

The Working Process

Below is my process. Some steps may be slightly different from how Lorelle did it.

My URL links to my posts in a plain text

URL links to my posts are in a plain text

  • Step 5: Create a rough list of Categories. Move the above URL links under each category accordingly. Continue reading

My Site Table of Contents – I did it!

This page is updated regularly. Old posts have been deleted. Posts are re-organised. 

For the most up-to-date Table of Contents, visit this page.

I’ve taken up Lorelle’s huge challenge, Blog Exercises: Organise Your Content, to organise all my posts on this blog. I’ll explain in my next post the sweat, tear, and joy of completing this task. I’m keen to find out what you think of the outcome. Would you like to try organising your site too?

This task is never going to be perfect, but I’m willing to show you my attempts, my progress, or my failure.

Site Table of Contents

This Site Table of Contents is a microscopic view of my 195 blog posts published on Janet’s Notebook from 5 April 2012 till 27 July 2013.

It covers stories of my life before the UK and my life after living in the UK since 1996. It covers my hobbies, my identity, and my thoughts on history, language and cross cultures.

It depicts my life in the south of England, my family with a son with pets, my local community, and my moments of glory and sadness.

It also reflects my love affairs with WordPress, and how my life has been enriched and transformed with WordPress through this brilliantly supportive and engaging community. Continue reading

Blogging in English: Who am I?

I started writing this English blog since April last year, and my embarrassing first post was about cardmaking: it all started with my mother in law. My even more embarrassing second post was one way to make your child more popular.

15 months later, my recent two posts were Pondering Freedom of Speech during Ramadan and Copyright violation: are you a victim?

From cardmaking to Ramadan, have I not noticed the difference in my subject matter, style, and language?

Lorelle on WordPress logoRecently, I took up Blog Exercises set by Lorelle VanFossen, a veteran blogger, and a die-hard WordPress loyalist (Please make sure you spell the trademark WordPress properly with 2 capital letters, to avoid her wrath.)

Her exercises have become my blogging nutrients. I have a dedicated bog exercises series to record my journey, because deep down, I really have a desire to improve, not just in my English grammar, my writing skill, but also my thoughts.

Today, I would like to encourage you to view Lorelle’s comprehensive Giant Blog Exercise Check List Part 1. I think it’ll benefit you as a blogger, a writer, and a thinker, whatever your blogging topics are. This list will open your eyes. It may even change your life. If not, at least it is a place with wonderful resources for your reference. The topics cover: Continue reading

How many ways can you view Tilly?

Speaker Deck slideshow

A few days ago, I published an ‘ebook’: When Janet met Tilly: an ebook

Today, I’m surprised to find out that I could convert this ebook into a slideshow, via Speaker Deck slideshow from WordPress.

If you have already had enough of Tilly (The Laughing Housewife) and Janet, please look away now.

If you had problems before downloading the ebook, or you didn’t get round to read it (shame on you), here is your last chance to appreciate Tilly’s wholesomeness.

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When Janet met Tilly: an ebook

Recently, you’ve read a lot of my encounters with Tilly Bud (The Laughing Housewife) in the north of England.

I’ve turned these blog posts into an ebook.

You may think, “I’ve read these posts before. I don’t need this rubbish ebook.”

But, if I tell you, this ebook contains some ‘previously unseen photographs of Tilly Bud’, would you be willing to click the download button?

Click the image below to download the ebook (in PDF format). It’s free.

When Janet met Tilly

When Janet met Tilly: Click this image to download ebook (PDF format)

Credit: I’m grateful for PDF Converter, which turned my Word document into a PDF ebook. It contains all my hyperlinks. This service is free of charge. I’m forever grateful.

My Related Posts:

Laughter and love

Meeting a WordPress friend in real life was actually a weird experience.

Tilly Bud (famously known as The Laughing Housewife) and I have been in contact via WordPress for about a year. We seemed to have known each other well before she opened her house for me and my son, for 5 days.

It was very brave of her. I’m a small Chinese person with a funny accent visiting a suburb in the north, dragging along a 12-year-old boy with me, because, to be safe, you should always bring a friend when you meet an online friend. In my case, I brought my son. Continue reading

The north south divide

I’m sending this short post by email. I hope it works and you manage to read it.

I’m staying with Tilly Bud (The Laughing Housewife) for a few days. We met through WordPress blogging. We speak different English. She seems to like me a bit.


People in the UK are aware of the north-south divide in this country. I certainly believe so.

Normally, in a standard house for a small family, you’ll have one landline and one phone. This family has 3 phones, one in each room. “Son, your cup of tea is ready!” They speak on the phone. Sometimes they even managed to dial the wrong numbers and speak to the wrong person.

Welcome to Upstairs, Downstairs.

The house is rather quiet, almost Zen-like. Why do I say that? There are 2 fish tanks in the lounge, and more fish tanks in the kitchen. The sound effect is constant from the fish tanks, and I’m not sure if the background sound would turn them all into Zen or slowly turn them mad.

Now I understand how Tilly Bud can be both silly and enlightening, and so moody and unpredictable in her blog. The secret must be with the fish tanks. That’s why she has more than 1000 followers.

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