Tag Archives: Blogging

Revamping My Blog – Help Please

I need some help from my followers, please. As it says on the tin I am ‘Revamping My Blog’, aka moving the furniture around and giving it a fresh coat of paint. After seven years it’s well overdue some TLC.

I’ve tried posting to the WP Community Pool and I’ve lost the will to live by lack of response from the blizzard of bloggers all fighting for airspace.

so here goes…

About Page

When I visit a new blog the first post/page I look for is the ‘About‘ page to see what we have in common. It’s surprising how many bloggers don’t have one. I’ve just updated mine, is it okay?


I’ve updated to

Links to websites included?  yep. Have you completed your gravatar info?

Header (Masthead)

I am useless at design  so if anyone would like to put forward suggestions for improving this, I’d be grateful. You can tell me it sucks… I’m not proud to admit defeat.

Update: someone has just contacted me and made some suggestions! Watch this space. THANK YOU!

Tag line

Which do you prefer: Surfing life one day at a time


Surfing life one wave at a time


I have merged some pages and created others such as ‘Pet Peeves A – Z‘.

I thought this would be a fun challenge if anyone would like to join in. Just leave links to your PP blog posts in the comment box and I’ll do a round up of Peeves once a month.

Sidebar Widgets

I have lots! Probably too many. As I’d like to add more blogs to my blog roll I think I am going to create a page to accommodate an overview of my favourite blogs. I notice a couple of bloggers I follow do this and I think it is a good idea. What do you think?

Anyways, that’s it for now. ALL feedback appreciated, thank you.


It’s Piglet’s Seven Year Blogiversary – Looking Back

Photocredit: Pixababy.com

I’ve just been notified by WordPress it’s my seven year anniversary. Have I really been blogging that long? My goodness, how time flies! Unfortunately, due to my admin interests at writingforums.com I neglected my blog and lost touch with my blogging buddies for several years. Now I click through my blogroll and most of those listed are either on hiatus or their blog has disappeared. Methinks it’s time to update my blogroll.

Looking back we seemed more of a family then. We interacted more on blog posts and left thoughtful comments and took a genuine interest in other bloggers such as what was growing in the garden, recipes shared, books published and read, life and love, laughter and family. Is blogging the same now?

My first real blogging buddies were (in not particular order)
1. What’s Bugging Me Today a lovely lady who went by the name of ClassyRose. We corresponded every day then in early 2011 she completely disappeared. I’d love to know what happened to her.
2. The RedNeckPrincess. She’s still blogging but you can no longer comment on posts. Donna’s humour is priceless!
3. PassionateAboutPets – Barb’s Blog has disappeared. Barb lives in Australia and regulary left comments on my my blog
4. Dave Farmer. Yay! Dave is still blogging and has now published his Zombie novel, The Range. Congrats, Dave!
5. Spirit Lights The Way. Nancy is still blogging and her posts always make me stop and think.
6. Sarsm – Blogs about life! Great to ee shee is stillactive.
7. Joys of Creating I love EC’s Blog! Full of craft and gardening tips!
8. Granny1947 – Everyday life in South Africa. IT’s good to see Granny is still posting and commenting.
9. Sammy’s Colourful World Sami is Portuguese and moved to Australia. I met up with Sami when she was visiting her family in Portugal. Hopefully we will meet up again at some point. Sami blogs about Aussie life.
10. Local Heart Global Soul Love this blog about life and travel.
11. Seashell by the Seashore – Seashell has not posted for a loooong time.
12. What about your saucepans Lindsey blogs about life in the Dominican Republic
13. Ouch! My Back Hurts – Irish life and humour

There are many, MANY more… these are just a few.

From tiny acorns…

I created PigletinPortugal, thanks to my daughter and her blog Piglet in France. I’d left lots of comments on her blog and when she was over on holiday she showed me how to create my own blog, upload photos and a host of other useful tips. I was a technophobe so it was quite a challenge!

During the seven years I have published 346 posts, received nearly 11,000 comments and 455,677 views from all over the world.

This was my very first post.

Yummy Carrot Cake

My favourite Carrot Cake

Suffering from stage fright I could not think of anything to post so I shared a recipe.

Two of the most controversial posts I made were

Dogs on beaches – please “scoop their poop”

Beaches are not toilets. Please scoop the poop.

Please scoop the poop

Please scoop the poop











Is Bullfighting Wrong?

This post attracted 116 comments and a poll which attracted over 1700 votes.

The iconic silhouette of the Osborne Bull in Spain

The iconic silhouette of the Osborne Bull in Spain












As a new blogger it was a great feeling to see my stats rocket and all the comments I received.

Gazanias in January

Gazania in January

Gazania in January











I can’t seem to find the other post. But I do remember a blogger plagiarised my post complete with all the comments!


A Turkish “Experience” in France which had eighty two comments!

Have you ever used a Turkish Loo?

Turkish Loo experience in France

Hold on for dear life!

Frozen Condoms in France

How do you explain to your daughter’s mother-in-law’s mother who can’t speak English, and my French does not extend to the finer points of condoms, why I am stabbing a frozen condom?

Nurse recommends frozen condom

Nurse recommends frozen condom

Pilates on the Beach

Pilates on the beach is not as ‘Zen’ as it seems especially when you are wearing suncream.

PILATES on the beach is NOT zen

PILATES on the beach is NOT zen

So raises glass to the next seven years!




Help needed please…

I love painting street scenes, however because I’m absolutely hopeless at drawing and especially “perspective” I needed to find a creative way to overcome my lack of talent. With this in mind I decided to cheat and with the aid of Photoshop created an outline picture from one of my favourite photographs which I could then print off and paint using water colours or acrylics. The only problem is I now can’t remember how I achieved this and I want to create more templates to paint!

After hours spent fiddling with Photoshop while cursing my stupidity as I tried various techniques, you can imagine my frustration.

So I’m appealing to all my followers and anyone who happens to drop by my blog out of curiosity…is there anyone out there in “CyberSpace” who is a “Photoshop Guru” who can help me or can anyone recommend a free photo management programme I can download which gives the same results?


Now paint it!

Now paint it!


A side street in Lagos, Western Algarve

A sidestreet in Lagos, Western Algarve

If you would like to paint this picture you are more than welcome to use the photo and template.

YAY! I’ve done it! Thanks for everyones input and encouragement!
The link below provides easy to follow Photoshop tutorials just right for techno-muppets like me!

I followed most of the instructions. However, to lighten the picture for painting I used:
Image tab, then selected Adjustments then Brightness/Contrast


Colourful boats

Colourful boats


I made the outline detail far lighter on this picture as I’m using it as a guide only.

Line drawing and ready to paint!

Line drawing and ready to paint!

Piglet meets up with fellow blogger Sami from Australia!

Sami, my blogging buddy from Western Australia

Sami, my blogging buddy from Western Australia

On Monday I met with one of my blogging buddies Sami of  “sami’s colourfulworld”. Sami lives in Perth, Western Australia and was in Portugal visiting family. When she suggested she delivered the prize I’d won on her 100th blog POST and GIVEAWAY in person, I was absolutely delighted!

My prize!

My prize!

It felt surreal to chat face-to-face rather than through the comment sections on our respective blogs, and great to  discover we had so many interests in common!

Thanks Sami 🙂

Piglet’s 2nd Blogiversary

Piglet's blogiversary cake

Piglet’s blogiversary cake

Two years ago today my daughter Piglet in France introduced me to the WordPress blog platform,  and Piglet in Portugal was born.

She patiently (she is not renowned for her patience when demonstrating techie stuff on the PC to Mother) showed me how to make posts, include links and upload photographs, create pages and a blogroll etc.

I missed my first “Blogiversary” due to the excitement of the arrival of our first grandchild in France. So I will celebrate my 2nd instead!

My very first post was Yummy Carrot Cake… mmm. With a name like Piglet you can imagine a recipe was the first idea that came into my mind as my fingers hovered nervously above the keyboard!

Over the next few months I made various posts and visitors came and went, but I was deafened by their silence in the comments section. Was I talking to myself? Didn’t anyone have an opinion, good or bad? So like many new bloggers I found blogging a lonely existence, in fact, so lonely I was even tempted to approve the SPAM comments out of desperation!

Stupidly it never crossed my mind to venture beyond the bounderies of my blog, to seek other bloggers across the globe, until WordPress launched the “postaday” and “postaweek” challenge. I tiptoed tentatively outside my comfort zone and answered their appeal for blogging buddies and, much to my relief and sanity, soon discovered many like-minded bloggers.

Interests varied from crafts, cookery and gardening, to humour, writing and the “meaning of life” to name a few. We supported each other through the “ups” and “downs” with emials, comments and likes, and over time we became virtual friends.

I was going to give a shout out to all my blogging buddies in this post, but if I missed anyone in a senile moment I would feel awful, so please check out some of the great blogs on my blog roll!

As well as being my 2nd Blogiversary this is also my 200th post!

I’ve also created two other blogs over the last year
Portugal in Pictures – A daily snapshot of Portugal. I love taking photographs so the blog is an experiemnt. Not sure about the black background – what do you think?

Portugal in Pictures

Portugal in Pictures

Plus, a healthier eating blog – The Piglets Healthy Eating Blog where PIF and I can share recipes.

The Piglets Healthy Eating Blog

The Piglets Healthy Eating Blog

We are were trying to follow an anti-inflammatory diet. This involved cutting out gluten and dairy from our diet. Although I found this extremely dificult when I stuck rigididly to the new eating plan, I did feel about 20years younger, lost weight, my IBS disappeared and so did my cronic heartburn. Plus I could even see my toes when I looked down at my feet! The diet, unfortunately has fallen by the wayside recently and I’m suffering the consequences. Serves me right – no sympathy please! I’m now back on the wagon so if you have any dairy-free and/or gluten-free recipes please, PLEASE share!

Finally, a big THANK YOU for everyones support over the last two years it’s really appreciated. I’ve met (virtually of course) some wonderful people whose posts have made me laugh and cry plus I have gained so much from their collective knowledge.

PS sorry about the dodgy cake picture above – I painted it out of desperation because  google did not understand my plea for free cake images .  Anyone know of any good “free” cartoon style image sites?

Thanks once again!

2012 BiB Awards – I’m on the shortlist – YAY!

Today I had a great surprise but I need your help!

Michelle @Michelloui asked me on Twitter if I’d seen the #BiBs?

Thank Goodness for Twitter!

Thank Goodness for Twitter!

“The what?” I thought feeling slightly confused…

Apparently I’ve been shortlisted in the “Go! Award” section in
The 2012 BiB Awards

The BiBs received more than 12,000 nominations over 12 different categories. And I’ve been short listed! Me little Piglet, and I did not even realise this until Michelle sent me a note on Twitter.

Now I need to ask beg a huge favour from all my blogging buddies and subscribers! Please vote for me 🙂

Please vote here

I’m in “Go” category (category 7 number 12)

Please share and tweet if possible please 🙂

Voting ends Monday April 30, 2012 at 17:00 GMT

I’ve Been Tagged! – Blogger Tag and My Seven Links

I’ve just been tagged by Margaret of Cachando Chile and now I’m “IT!…”Thanks Margaret! Thank goodness for virtual travel – Chile is a long way from Portugal.

I've been tagged!

I've been tagged!

Who made this game up? I have no idea!, but the way it works is a blogger tags you, you match your own posts in specific “Most this” and “Most that” categories, and then you tag another 5 people. I was hesitant at first, however, it has given me a great opportunity to look back and review some old posts. I’ve just realised – I missed my first BlogAversary in May – how time flies!

Here are my “Seven”

Most Beautiful Post

FADO – is like Marmite!

Not sure about the post being beautiful, but we went to a Fado concert and Mariza sung with such passion she moved me to tears. Mariza is a Fado singer in a class of her own and it is the most memorable experience I’ve had since moving to Portugal.

Most Popular Post

In terms of comments my most popular post is:

Proud Grandparents

We are so proud of our daughter; everything she has been through during her pregnancy, the birth and more. Thank you for being such a great daughter you have brought great happiness to our lives as your daughter will yours!

Most Helpful post

Cost of Living in Portugal

Before we decided to make the move to Portugal we spent hours agonizing over the “Cost of Living” and how it compared with such countries as the UK, France and Spain.

A Post whose success surprised me

Gazanias in January.

I was really taken by surprise when this humble post was “Freshly Pressed” I’d never really considered freshly Pressed before, so I was absolutely astounded when I looked at my stats and they’d gone off the scale! I had to refresh the page and clean my glasses to make sure I had not misread the figures.

Most Controversial Post

This is a difficult because several of my posts have been “Controversial” However, the controversial post with the most controversial comments is:

A Turkish “experience” in France

A Post that Didn’t get the Attention I felt it deserved

The Red Palm Weevil – is it out of control?

I felt/feel passionately about the Red Palm Weevil. Very little, if anything, has been implemented to control, dispose of infected trees and of course publicity to prevent the spread of this destructive bug. Even now I see infected trees dumped at the rubbish bins and trees just left to die untreated. Some opportunists, looking to make a “quick buck”, have jumped on the bandwagon by offering to remove infected trees, but at extortionate prices.

Post I’m Most Proud Of

Easy! My very first blog post!

Yummy Carrot Cake… mmm
My daughter PigletinFrance helped me create my blog and taught me how to write and upload my first post “Yummy Carrot Cake… mmm” in May 2010

I’ve just realized my first post was a food post!


I really enjoy bloggin’, especially connecting with other bloggers across the world. Thanks to everyone for being so supportive!

Now I have to tag five bloggers who have to tell their tale of seven. (or six in my case)

In no order of preference we have:

Enjoy Creating (USA)crafts/gardening/cooking/etc – because life is full of creative moments 🙂

Noobcake (UK)Life through the eyes of a Noob

The Redneck Princess (Canada) Recklessly inappropriate, usually unfiltered, and sometimes funny..

Love versus Goliath (Australia) Two people in love against the weight of Bureaucracy

Mirth and Motivation Motivate. Elevate. Laugh. Live Positively…

Sami’s Colourful World
Sami’s Portuguese and blogs about Arts and crafts, travel, her cats and life in Australia. She has only been blogging a couple of months and really needs some support. Please pop across to her blog and take a peep!

I’ve only chosen four blogs from around the world and left the fifth spot for a blogger to volunteer!
Please don’t all rush at once – come on folks don’t be shy form an orderly queue below!

Actually ignore the above deletion – if anyone wants to to be tagged so they can form their own tag team and go forth and multiply links and promote new blogs, please let me know – your tagged and rules are made to be changed!