Dear Blog – 16.21 – 21/08/21

How long is the proverbial piece of string anyway?

I didn’t honestly know how long l would be away when l published Taking a Break last month – l figured it would be perhaps between 4 – 8 weeks max, and yet l have published three posts [including this one] to my blog anyway since then. The first week away witnessed the bulk of the shake and wake ups l needed to perform to this blog, whilst the second week was fine tuning those changes and this last week, l have allowed the blog to be dormant of sorts aside from the occasional posting.

There is no denying, I have been away … ish for 21 days – even with the three posts published because they weren’t posted daily in any sequence like l used to achieve before. Perhaps the most noticeable change is that I have been absent from the day to day social communication with many of you, l have still been reading your blogs daily and when applicable l have been commenting. So no different a schedule to normal there, just not writing daily.

My apologies to some of you who have written to me and asked questions and not received a fully committed response, the reason for that is that there has been a lot of additional stress in my life in the last few weeks and l was glad to be on the break for some of those whilst l could get to grips with them more.

I have been kept busy with life from all angles …. l shall explain a few here today.

1] The Guy blog

Needed a complete overhaul internally and that has been successfully achieved, l’ll not bore you with all the tiny details but some of the bigger ones. Sunday 1st August started with a total of 8005 posts in this blog written from September 2017 when the blog was first created to 31st July 2021 and l decided to have a massive clear out and so today l only have 1440 posts, l destroyed everything else, they were simply no longer needed. I also have an additional 100 or so stored that are to be rewritten for the business blog in the next few months and then they too will be deleted.

Other internal and otherwise invisible changes to this blog were the removal of many categories and hundreds of tags and a good 2GB of unwanted media [the latter is still an ongoing chore as l am in the process of endeavouring to remove a total of 10GB media images from a current collective figure of 18GB]

Many series were removed – for a few reasons, but mostly they required a lot of input from me to create and they didn’t really receive a lot of feedback from others proving they were not that popular to begin with. Many older series were simply archived. Many question series were deleted , although the 24 Hour Blog Question series is staying. There were many changes of that ilk. I will still have running however a total of 13 series, although 5 are currently inactive. I also tweaked the navigation bar and expanded the menu for those readers who don’t just use the Reader. The Likes and the sharing buttons on this blog will remain disabled.

The new writing schedule for this blog is three posts per week which will start properly end September. Although between now and then, like this week as an example, l will be creating two posts weekly. There are no more changes to be made to this blog. I did change the background colour, and am now happy with the teal/sea green blue l have in situ.

There will be other small invisible tweaks to this blog all year that’ll not directly affect any of the readership though.

2] The business blog

Has been partially renamed and will launch later on in the year, but will not be connected to GUY and will be a separate entity completely covering topics mostly to do with vermicomposting and vermiculture, composting, courtyard gardening and environmental issues as well. Although the ‘Social Gardening series ‘ in the GUY blog will be separate to this.

Yes, I am still studying the marketing course to those who enquired about that and will be for most of this year.

3] Suze –

A few people have enquired about Suze and her health and how is she? There is more to what l write below, but in a brief synopsis, the following ….

Some of you may recall, that Suze was suffering with mild depression because of the long term side effects following the cancer treatment such as the lack of saliva production [due to the radiotherapy completely destroying her saliva glands] so she always has a completely dry mouth and must either chew gum or sip water all day[as she cannot produce any saliva of her own], her neuropathy which is damage to the peripheral nerves which affects her hands and feet terribly, and also her tinnitus which was also caused by the treatment she received to remove the cancer from the throat. [The treatment damaged her ear drums]

But all of these combined mean that she is no longer able to sleep for longer than 2 hours unbroken sleep a day and this with everything else going on caused by the side effects and including a very damaged diet and loss of appetite due to ‘dry mouth’ caused her to crash on her mental health. Making matters worse, Suze feels very vulnerable and is suffering from acute loneliness which is making her depression far worse.

I have invited Suze to be my house guest to help her and motivate her recovery and hopefully be able to get her into a position of strength and confidence to make decisions on her life that will affect her long term. She will be my full time guest from the start of October for an unfixed period of time.

4] My stomach problems –

So with my worries for Suze, l have had a bit more stress of late and l have not been telling everybody everything until things were firmer and this has been playing some havoc with my stomach.

In addition to everything else going on in my life my own digestion problems have taken a downward spiral move on my health. I have an extremely bland diet that l feel is now lacking the right nutrients and vitamins required for good physical health. I do take a fortified shake daily, but from today have now increased that to twice daily.

In recent weeks , other ingredients have become unavailable to me via the shopping and l am in the process of trying to source out replacements and so l must trial and error my progress and this can make me quite ill at times. Trying to work the magic with this health problem with absolutely no help from the medical profession is a tough journey and l am experiencing several mood swings and dizzy spells and hot flushes which can be hard work with constant stomach pain.

5] My teeth –

My dental journey is still ongoing and will probably be like this until the end of the year, all l have had so far has been a few fillings on my top teeth, due to much confusion over the state of damage in my mouth and the dentists having to constantly retake dental impressions due to the nature of my lower jaw ‘s ability to move unnaturally in my mouth and therefore changing the way the impressions were initially cast. This is due to the fact that my lower jaw was fractured in 1989 and wasn’t properly detected at the time by recovery dentists and so it mended by itself incorrectly over several years and it now moves differently to my upper jaw. So no more fillings and repairs can be made until the top denture is correctly fitted. Once done, this results in fewer teeth injuries ….. apparently.

6] Gardening and vermicomposting –

I made a decision six weeks ago to start a business that involved vermiculture or better known as the cultivation of earthworms and other worm species for the conversion of waste products to compost. What l want to do is become a dealer of worms and sell my own for the sole purpose of supplying to other vermicomposters. The business is to be split into two prime concepts – 1] the physical worm product and 2] a business blog to support it all.

It has taken me all year to realise that what was missing from my life was in fact a business that had a purpose. Hence one of the prime reasons to requiring a massive blog overhaul – l needed to switch my times between two blogs and endeavour to maintain a healthy balance between business and pleasure and pleasure and business.

So there we go, as said l will be back next week with a couple of posts for your enjoyment. Till then, thanks for reading.

48 thoughts on “Dear Blog – 16.21 – 21/08/21

  1. Both you and Suze are going through very difficult times. I hope that she agrees to stay as you house guest and both of you get motivation to better physical and mental health. Thanks for the update my friend on your blog and your life. My warm wishes for you both. Take care.

    1. Hey Sadje, many thanks – it certainly is a trying time for all parties concerned. Suze has agreed, and the month of September will be a busy month from all angles l feel. But once she is here, l hope to be able to get her feeling better about who she is.

  2. Hey JB
    I’m sorry your tummy is still acting up, but it doesn’t surprise me. I hope the dentist doesn’t lag too much. I remember when I was getting my dentures fitted, it seemed to take forever. After finally getting the process started, I was impatient for it to be done already. I spent several months with no teeth at all.

    That stress is not helping either. There are products for dry mouth. It happens a lot with narcotic pain meds too, so I’ve seen stuff advertised. Doesn’t fix it, but it sounds like it’s one of those things she’s going to have to deal with. Poor Suze. She needs to be more assertive with her doctors to help with some of this stuff, but I understand it’s hard to be assertive in the middle of a depression. I hope you can help her get that sorted first off. I know you’ll try.

    🤐🤐🤐 I was just gonna say hello, and I’m writing a novel here. 🤪🤦🏼‍♀️ I’ll stop.😂


    1. Hey Gramma, well she has a gel, but it’s only a night time gel, but it only lasts for two hours before the dry mouth is back, that strikes hardest when she is trying to sleep.

      The week before now, she broke down, the sleep deprivation thing as you well know is the one issue that can flaw everything. You can put up with most things if you have your sleep, BUT the moment that is gone or damaged or broken, health starts to drain very quickly indeed.

      Her doctors inform her dry mouth is long term as an issue, with no remedy on the horizon. Although she is now on anti dees to purely help with her sleep and slow her down.

      She had a colossal reaction to them, because the dose was wrong, and it was that which caused the mental health meltdown ten days ago – so ashe is now on a much milder doseage until her regular doctor is back off holiday and can discuss her meds with her again.

  3. That sucks that Suze is having to deal with so much crap.

    I find it so satisfying to delete categories, tags, media, and that kind of thing that no longer have a reason to exist.

    1. Hey Ashley, totally gratifying to delete the unneeded 🙂

      I found that a good 85% of the deleted were posts connected to prompts and games either my own creations or others. I am no longer going to be hosting my own prompts aside from the 24 Hour Blog Question.

      And with regards Suze – yes, the whole situation well l should say shituation is indeed crap!

        1. That’s exactly it Ashley, there is more depth and l will write on it soon, but what was troubling me more, and as l said to you at the start of the month is that l wanted to make more impact and prompts wasn’t the way forward for me to achieve that.

          I have changed as a person in the four years blogging and the changes personally this year have been the most defining for me.

          Of the remaining 1400 odd posts left in blog, only something like 45% are actually visible to the reader via the menus, the remaining ones were stored for sentimental value. The visible ones are those which have more purpose or point or true entertainment.

          Prompts die the day they are published and l was tiring of producing content that was mostly topical when l wanted to create more evergreen, but more importantly, that added more value.

  4. 🤔 Rory, the removal of 10GB of media images from 18GB of storage is quite a lot.

    To save valuable storage space in the future, I recommend compressing the images before uploading them to your blog (You can use TinyPNG for that).

    And, I truly hope that Suze’s mood changes for the better.

    I would also like to wish you all the best on your vermiculture project.

    1. Hey Renard, many thanks – l do have 200GB of space anyway, l simply wish to take it down to below the storage space of a Premium blog because l don’t need for this blog to be a business model anymore. if l can’t achieve that, it’s no biggie, but if l can it’ll make life easier.

      I am more bothered by the fact that the removal system isn’t that easy in WP.


    2. Ps Renard – many thanks for this information – To save valuable storage space in the future, I recommend compressing the images before uploading them to your blog (You can use TinyPNG for that).

      I didn’t know about that – that would have helped enormously knowing it.

      But it’ll serve me well in the business blog itself 🙂

    1. Hey Gary, shops are losing products very quickly at times sadly. I am probably only on about 18 main food types now. It is demotivating, as l am sure you know also.

      But also quite worrying.

  5. Sending light and good vibes for healing for you and for Suze. Best wishes for you new business!

  6. It’s so good to hear from you, Rory, and good for you for moving forward.

    I did a complete overhaul of my media. I deleted over 1000 images, which as you know is tedious and time-consuming. Then I went through my posts one by one to be sure there were no missing images. I have also deleted many posts that no longer fit my intent and/or will be altered for future posting. Btw, I resize all images in order to save space.

    It was difficult for me to let go of my weekly prompt in its entirety so I changed it to an unmoderated prompt. I am pleased with my decision thus far because I can enjoy reading the works of others without the pressure of posting a Roundup. Simplicity at its finest!

    Sending good vibes and blessings to you and Suze!

    1. Hey Eugenia, yes, ‘letting go’ can be hard at times – but once you have made the decision to do exactly that, it makes everything so much easier.

      You may recall, my upsets way back at the end of february concerning ‘prompts’, l made the decision back then to let go of prompts and instantly felt better for it.

      Media clearance in WP is extremely hard as a task, not made easy by WP and the slowness that images appear in the directories. However, it is like trying to find a needle in a haystack with the process of elimination – a right PITA if there ever was one sadlt.

      Lesson learned.

      1. Yep, media clearance is a slow process, indeed. I brought up my media in a separate tab from my posts and went from there. The more media I deleted, the slowness improved. Lesson learned, as well.

        1. Hey Eugenia, l have found since ashley told me about the unattached images – clearance has been a lot quicker, it has seriously sped up the whole process. I have deleted all of the unattached from 2018 now.

          Just 2019, 2020 and this year to go ….. very VERY much a case of lessons learned.

          Once l have done this, l will then return to the single process of looking at the straggler posts again, deleting unwanted, reduce images for those kept and move forwards with those valuable lessons 🙂

  7. So sorry to hear of your and Suze’s unresolved health concerns, Rory! I continue to hold you both in my heart, wishing you well. Will be taking a break from WordPress for a month or two, myself. Hope all goes well with your new plans and changes.

  8. I did not realize how much I would miss you, Rory. I think you are heading in good directions. But what do I know!? Hope you can stay ahead of health problems.

    1. Hey Geoff, thank you my friend 🙂 I also hope l am heading in the right direction … but l would also echo, ‘what do l know too’ hahaha 🙂 I have been wrong before.

  9. I understand the changes in the blog and deleting a lot of stuff that is no longer necessary for one reason or another. I have three blogs. One will be eventually deleted after going though 2600+ posts and the other older one I can’t delete as it is my first blog and so I am stuck with that one since I have a new one on here now. Good luck with everything.

    1. Hey Tessa, well that’s it in a nutshell l think, we as writers move on and change and reflectively we feel that our posts no longer define us properly – so we alter and we delete 🙂

      Thanks for commenting.

      1. Yes, but it is a long involved process and that is just one blog. So 2600 on one and not sure how much on my first one still and I will have one remaining in the end.

  10. Rory, it is wonderful to see you blogging again. I am glad you are doing what feels good to you.
    I am so sorry for medical issues you both are experiencing.
    SARK wrote on her Facebook something like, “If you could have something for a week that would make you extremely happy what would it be?” My answer was, I’d like to be totally pain free.
    I hope being at your place will give Suze some joy and comfort. I hope you can work out to some degree your medical issues. It is criminal that the medical powers that be, are not helping you.
    sending you virtual hugs and real life prayers.

Comments are closed.

Up ↑