Category Archives: Blogging

2018 Blogging Resolutions

I am trying out some new New Year’s Resolutions ideas this year.  I know, I know–soooo cliche.  I promise I’ll be brief.

The first “new” item on my list was to pick a word that will represent all my blogging goals for 2018.  I have chosen the word CREATE.  I will focus on creating new material, new series and new readers during the next 12 months.  I also hope to create a small income, but that’s really a secondary goal.

The second is to CREATE a mission statement for my blog so that all my goals will align with that central theme.  So here it is…..drum roll, please….

My blog’s mission is to assist non-Mexicans (Expats) learn about living in rural Mexico by sharing our family adventures and disasters along with the stories experience by others and to keep my mom up-to-day on our daily happenings.

In order to advance the above mission statement I have the following goals for 2018:

I hope to develop a variety of featured guest posts including but not limited to: Charities and Non-Profit Organizations, Inspiring Authors in Mexico, Blogs about Mexico Worth Reading, Small Businesses in Mexico, and Individuals Braving Mexico. (See Your Stories About Mexico).

I plan to participate in the April Blog Challenge based on the topic A to Z Reasons I Love Mexico along with my SOTB Blogging Group.  Last year I completed the A to Z Survival Series.

I really would like to finish and translate (well, my son will be doing the translating) my animal adventure e-book.

I am determined to continue with the Herbal Lore monthly posts about local plant life, their medicinal properties and the lovely teas you can make with them.  Plus offer relevant e-book bundles when they become available.

And that’s it. I told you I’d be brief.  I’ll post an update (and hopefully release date as well) mid-way through the year.


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Blogs About Mexico Worth Reading–Call it Kismet

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Jules, a blogger at Call it Kismet, was born in Eastern Kentucky and is currently cruising the Pacific coast of Mexico on our live-aboard sailboat.  Here’s what she has to say about her life.

What brought you to Mexico?  

Opportunity to sail in a different country.

How has your life changed?

My stress level had lowered dramatically.  Mexico has a very casual vibe. We don’t have a car, so no traffic problems.

How has your belief system changed?

 It hasn’t.

How have you changed?  

I am learning to become more patient and not so time-obsessed.

What challenges have you overcome?

Living in a small space (boat) with my husband and 2 dogs has simplified my life.

What challenges are you still facing?  

I still miss shopping at Target and Marshalls.

What keeps you going?

Good friends we have met along the way and travel with keep me from getting lonely.

What accomplishment makes you the proudest?

Shedding our material life. We had two beautiful homes and two cars. But it was all just “stuff”.

What things do you miss about your life before?  

Being close to family. But my parents died recently, so I don’t feel the desire or need to return to the US.

What have you found is no longer important to you?

Material things like houses and cars. And shoes. I now wear flip-flops every day.

What do you consider the defining moment in your life in Mexico?

When I got my residency card I realized that Mexico truly and legally is HOME.

How do you spend your free time?

All my time is free time. Since we move around a lot, I go “Urban Hiking” to explore the local towns.

How do you maintain yourself/your family financially?


How have you overcome fear?

No fears.

How have you grown as a person?

I am a work in progress but am mellowing out.

What skills have you learned in Mexico?

A bit of language-learning. I take classes at marinas sometimes and went to Spanish School in Taxco for 6 weeks.

What skills do you still have to master?

The language.  Each summer, during hurricane season, we plan to continue our travels inland for 3-4 months and take Spanish classes in different areas.

What inspires you? What angers you?  

What angers me is the vast overpopulation of homeless animals. But I am inspired by the groups that are raising awareness and helping with spay-neuter and rescue.

What would you do differently if you could do it all over again?

I wouldn’t change a thing.

What is your current goal?

 Just going with the flow for now.

How do you make your life meaningful?

I surround myself with good people.

Do you volunteer?

Since we move around a lot, it is difficult to volunteer, but I frequently donate $$ to animal welfare groups.



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Filed under Blogging, Blogs about Mexico Worth Reading, Guest Blogger Adventures

Giving up on Paid Book Reviews

me reading

If you remember, awhile back I thought I’d try my hand at reviewing books.  (See Online Book Reviewer).  I have officially thrown in the towel on this venture.  Can you make money reviewing books?  Yes.  Did I make money reviewing books?  Yes.  Do I want to continue doing this?  No.

There are a few reasons for this.  Originally, I had the option to review books on my blog and get paid for it.  Not all the books I reviewed were paid, but there were some that gave me that extra incentive.  Recently the rules were changed.  Now, book reviews would be paid based on the blog’s popularity instead of a fixed amount.  Well, I’m not going to win any popularity contests, so that seriously cut into my profit margin.

Then the new policy stated that only reviewers with a level 4 or higher could even apply for these paid reviews.  I’m stuck at level 2.  I mean, really stuck there even though my editorial analysis score is 73% (the average rating is 58%) and I have received several perfect review scores recently.  I thought maybe I could do a few more free reviews to bolster my status, but when I went to pick a new book, I discovered that the webmaster placed a bogus book on the list to make sure that reviewers were reading the book information before choosing a book.  I always do, so I didn’t trigger the trap, but it was annoying. 

I figured I still had the chance to win the daily drawing.  Even if I didn’t win randomly, eventually I would get to the top of the heap and they would HAVE to give me some money.  So 477 entries later, I did win.

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The retweets for cash option also underwent some changes.  Now, instead of just liking, retweeting and commenting on the tweet, I would have to add the book to my virtual shelf.  Only the system didn’t recognize a book that I already had added to my shelf and so I get this message:

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And that was the final straw.  You may still see some book reviews on my blog now and then, but they won’t be for this particular organization.





Filed under Blogging, Book Reviews, Employment

Prepper Me


So awhile ago, I came across a website looking for writers.  I clicked the link to investigate.  It turned out to be a Prepper site.  You know… the end is nigh, prepare now to survive and so on.  I thought to myself, well, maybe I could write stuff like that.  After all, I did complete the A to Z Why La Yacata is the best place to survive whatever disaster series.  So I asked my blogging group.  Did they think I could write Prepper stuff?  And yep, the ladies convinced me that I definitely could.  So I applied.

Several days later, I received a response.  I was super excited.  After several emails back and forth, my trial topic posts were Cooking with Cast Iron Cookware and The Medicinal Use of Garlic which I was subsequently paid for and were published on the site.  Go ahead and check them out!  I’m pretty proud of them!

Bare OrganicsMe- I got accepted to write for that Preppersite. Son- Does that mean we have to move to a military compound- Me- No, but we need to get those zombie deterrents up.

Then I submitted several other topic ideas, including Lessons Learned from Mexico’s Recent Earthquakes, and received positive replies from the post coordinator, but no dockets to write any articles on the topics I submitted.

Well, I guess I’m not a Prepper after all.

SolSource - The Ultimate Solar Cooker



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Filed under Blogging, Employment