Gmail Adds Tasks

I use Gmail. I think it has one of the better spam filters. Love having email from various groups filtered into their own folders. Love searching for email, because filing things neatly into folders never worked for me.

This morning will checking my mail, I found a new link just above my chat labeled tasks. I took a few seconds and added my To-Do list, I’ll check them off as I go along.

I have other things I can use, which doesn’t always get done. I’m ADD and get distracted easily. What was I going to work on next after checking mail? Easy to see, there is my To Do list sitting right on my computer, reminding me what I’m to be working on. In just a couple of minutes I set up one for my SendOutCards business and another list for other stuff. I’ll try different things for this and see what works best for me.

Here is a quick video I made to show you how gmail tasks feature works.

RoboForm is a Great Time Saving Tool

Don’t know why I put off getting RoboForm. I didn’t want to take the time to learn one more thing, set up one more tool. Yet, keeping track of passwords and filling out forms is a royal pain. The more time online, the more places I belong, the more blogs I manage, etc. , the harder it becomes to manager everything.

After watching Ben Fitts use RoboForm in one of his trainings, I decided to check it out. I went ahead and downloaded it today.

I posted on twitter about adding Roboform and got a nice tutorial from Mitch on getting started with Robo Form. Thanks Mitch! Great to read even before you set up and install RoboForm.

RoboForm: Road Rules for the Real World by Mitchell Allen

Only 24 Hours in a Day

Tunnels of Time
Tunnels of Time by Fdecomite
Each of us have only 24 hours in a day. I’ve often thought ” If I could just clone myself” or “If I could magically add an extra 12 hours to a day”. As tempting as the thought would be, what would be the wear and tear on our bodies/spirit cramming more and more in each day.

I’d make a killer “To Do List” for Monday, that by Friday was still not finished. How depressing! I’d even get mad at myself for not getting a simple list completed.

A year and a half back, I was out of town for a couple days with my husband for his back surgery. I still have school kids at home, and took friends up on their offers to help. My grade schooler stayed with one of her best friends. Another friend was at the house after work and dropped the other kids off before heading in to work. One parent saw that my swimmers made it to and from swim practice.

When I visited my oldest daughter for the birth of her first baby, again I had several friends fill in for me, it took several. I realized that I’m not being a slacker, just too many things I want to do, saying yes to too many things.

I realized that there are more good things we can do in a day than we have time. The cool part about this is that we can pick and choose the very best things to do and do those. Much more fun than beating yourself up for not doing more. Save the other ideas for a rainy day.

I’ve also learned that technology has created tools I can use which save me time. Each tool takes time to learn, some take just a few minutes, others take so much more time to learn. I’ll be posting from time to time tools which I’ve used which save me time.

Fill free to add your favorite time saving tools and tips.

How to add BBClone to a WordPress Blog

I like being able to see the stats of my blog, who is visiting, amount of traffic, how do visitors find me, how long do they stay, which sites send me the most referrals, which keywords, etc. I was surprised to see my new blog Heidi’s Cards, place in the search engines for several phrases which included keywords from my category names and post titles. Just a trickle of traffic, but encouraging just the same.

Different stats program show different things, and I’ll be the first to admit there is much I don’t know about the various stats programs, what they do, how they work, which one is the best, etc. I’ll probably never be an expert at all of that. BBclone does what I want for now, which is good enough.

I’m posting this information here as I don’t want to lose the steps, and others may find it useful. As I moved to a new host, I wanted a web stats program, and discovered a quick easy way to add BBClone to the wordpress blogs I’ve moved to my new webhost . Now I know which pages visitors enter/leave, where they com from, I can even click in the detailed stats and see which search engines searches referred them to me, what keyword or phrase was used, whose site referred them, how long they visited, which pages, etc.

Sending out Gifts in the Mail Shortcut

Avenue Sweets Sampler

Christmas is fast approaching and you haven’t even started your gift giving. Very business season, and you haven’t had a chance to come up for air.

Yet you would love to send out gifts of appreciation, if only you could find an easy way to do such without hiring temporary help, which is in short supply come holiday season. I’d like to share a simple quick way to have your personalized gifts sent out quickly,

  1. Set up a SendOutCards account.
  2. Upload your database names and addresses.
  3. Pick or create your own personalized Christmas card. If you hurry, you’ll have time to get your handwriting font on the card
  4. Send card to each person on your gift list, adding a personal note. You can pick a gift card to be added to the card such as Starbucks, Barnes and Noble, iTunes, Blockbuster, Home Depot, Walmart, 5 Restaurants in 1, Old Navy, etc. If you prefer a physical gift, you can choose from a variety of treats such as carmels and chocolates, cookies, brownies, tea, gormet coffee, nuts, etc. Each of these gifts are packed to send priority mail, with your holiday greeting card placed in a clear envelope and placed on top.
  5. Click Send. And your card and gift will be printed, packaged, addressed , shipped and mailed.
  6. Enjoy a stress-free Christmas season!

If you’d like more info, please contact me, and I’ll personally see that someone walks you through setting up your gift giving account.

What Do Unicorns, Ticking Noise, Navajo Fry Bread and Hungry Cats Have in Common?

They all have become a part of YouTube.

My daughter-in-law unintentionally found herself singing “voldemort voldemort ooh volde volde volde voldemort!“.

“Charlie” and “Candy Mountain” are no longer welcome terms in our home. I’m not even going to post that link.

I have to admit that the pesty hungry cat is funny, any cat owner can relate, my youngest daughter’s favorite.

YouTube entertains, has become part of today’s culture. A way to get noticed, another media channel. Lots of crazy stuff, even saw an iPhone in a blender. Kind of like owning your own TV station.

YouTube is also a great way to share how to do something. I want to thank Kathryn Little for teaching how to make Navajo Fry Bread. Very good stuff, eaten plain or turned into Navajo Tacos. Helps having directions showing how something is done.

Once I get past the Christmas Rush I’ll have to check into this video thing more. Put on your thinking cap, how can you use video to connect with your readers?

YouTube, not the only way to share video on the internet, but their brand has become a household name. When was the last time you had gelatin? Jello?

Have You Picked up Your Marketing Calendar Yet?

I picked up this great resource by following a link from the Women’s Media Summit Blog. Your Marketing 2007 Calendar lists many special holiday events, and gives you space to write your own monthly marketing plan around these events.

Here is where I missed out. I’d downloaded the calendar, understood the value, but really missed the boat. I knew that the 50th anniversary of the launch of Sputnik was coming up. So the night before I was searching for info to add to my blog as I thought it’d make a great post. Weird, I searched on Technorati for the term sputnik and came up blank, nothing current on the news channels. How could this day come and go unnoticed. So the next morning, I added my post and searched online, and the news articles were rolling in, thousands of blog posts about the event, even Google appropriately changed their logo in celebration.

As I went through my blogs stats the next day, I saw that a few were searching for 50th anniversary Sputnik cards. My site came up about 1st in a google search. Why? Because I sell a card system, where you or I can make custom cards on the fly, and I talked about Sputnik. Then the ideas came. Sputnik was the first satellite, I offer various communication services, where would our communication be today without satellites? I could have had cards made up a week in advance, articles related in the article directories, a special promotion, contest etc. But not when I start planning about midnight the night before, and ideas come a couple days later.

So today I’m printing out my marketing planning sheets. Picking a few ideas each month that will work for me. Then fill in the details as I brainstorm in advance.

Thanks again Heidi Richards for more great info from the Women’s Media Summit.

Heidi Caswell

Firefox Extensions

My son Tim, kept telling me use Firefox, it is safer, a better browser. And I’d still be using Internet Explorer. Not all websites work with Firefox, and I don’t want to learn one more thing.

Then I was learning CSS and asked Tim for some help and he had this cool extension with all kinds of tools which made my life simpler. I downloaded Firefox. Later I learned a few more Firefox extensions and how to use them (beats figuring it out yourself) from Marketing Ice. And I’ve kept my eyes open for new tools. I had no idea a browser could do so much. My list:

  • FirefoxDownload your free version.
  • WebDeveloper The first Firefox tool I was shown, many features, tools to help with webdesign, what sold me was being able to edit css to see what the changes will look like before uploading files to your website. Many one click tools.
  • FireBug I find myself using this one more than webdeveloper. Another cool webdesign tool. My favorite tool. I’d be lost without these first two.
  • Diigo tool Bar Great help for bookmarking, categorizing places you visit.
  • Search Status Gives me feedback about the page I’m on, shows nofollow links, links, page rank, etc.
  • Colorzilla A quick way to find the number code for any color on a webpage, a handy tool I wish I’d bumped into earlier.
  • Measure It A handy little ruler which you can use to measure pixels on a website, I found it will searching for the color tool.
  • GreaseMonkey An easy way to add code, I really don’t get this one, but know several who use it and say it is great. I know it is an easy way to add some kind of code and have only used it when someone walks me through it.
  • IE tab Let’s you click a button and see what the page you are viewing will look like on IE browser, often it is a little different. Habits are hard to break and I often just open an IE window.

Now what did I do before Firefox and all these cool tools. Please share your favorites.


Now That URL is Just Too Dang Long–Tiny URL

I’ve known about Tiny Url for a while.
You get a really long url and it just doesn’t fit in your text box nicely, or you put the link in an email and it gets chopped off and becomes file not found:

So you just head on over to
type in the long url, better yet, cut and paste.

Click and button and voila! Shortened url.

I found that I forget about various cool tool available, then when I need them, I can’t find them. For now, I’m putting ones I use on my blog, can’t misplace them that way.

Heidi Caswell
Brighten Someone’s Day, Send a card, Its on Me