web design

So, this here blog? elfini? It’s all Julie Tilsner’s fault.  4 years ago she said “Hey Dawn, you should start a blog!” And when Julie says “Jump”, I say “Fine… if you insist. But I’m not going to enjoy it.” And I think we all know how well this turned out.

Anyway, a couple weeks ago, Julie finally said “Hey Dawn, you should redesign my blog!” And I jumped up and down, said yes, and insisted she bail on the evil Typepad and migrate to WordPress.

And a word of advice here – do not get me started on Typepad and the Six Apart world. The seething raging hate!!

Luckily Julie bent to my will and is now happily hosting Bad Home Cooking on a spiffy new WordPress installation. And it looks something like this:


Now click the pretty picture and bask in the glory of the new and improved Bad Home Cooking! Same old funny wrapped in a shiny new package.


Cold Coding Part Two

June 16, 2010

in web design

This time with less cold.

I’m like the house painter who’s own house never gets painted. My website is a mess. I’ve started more blogs and everything is all over the place. It was finally time to do something about it. So coming off the success (haha) of the photo blog, I’ve been attempting a custom Thesis design for the DB Designs Services site. I’ve been creating multiple feature boxes and mastering WordPress hooks – or at least attempting to.

It’s funny how I work. When downstairs and on the laptop, I have been been working on the thesis design. When I’m upstairs on my computer, I edit photos and work in Photoshop/Dreamweaver. And I just move back and forth between the two machines and the 2 projects. So, while upstairs yesterday I started designing a new home page for my website. A landing page to connect all my various sites. And BEHOLD! the new and improved dawnblanchfield.com~

Pretty spiffy eh? Next on the chopping block – a complete rebuild of my photography portfolio.  This time around there will be no flash. No flash!

Hey that reminds me, I need to make a cape for a certain someone’s <cough>Paul!</cough> upcoming birthday. Who has a bedazzler I can borrow?!


Cold Coding

May 24, 2010

in web design

or coding with a cold. Either way – don’t do it.

Early last week Erin got sick and spent a night throwing up. It was … unpleasant. She had a slight fever the next day and then was fine. Of course, the following day Chris went down. He tried to drag me down with him, but I managed to stay out of the range of “deathly-ill, can’t get out of bed, must sleep more” and just hung out in the “Land of Feeling Like Crap and Fighting a Migraine” all weekend. I don’t recommend that place, the service sucks and the towels are really scratchy.

Anyways, the weekend was a slug-fest with Chris and I just lying around while the whirling dervish that we call Erin made a huge mess all around us. I basically spent 3 days just hanging out in my chair with the laptop keeping me warm. And since I had a bit of a break from Sweet Blog design work, I decided to finish up the work on my own design portfolio site and the photo-blog I created last Dec.

And apparently I was a bit sicker than I thought, because things were much more difficult than they should have been. I spent Friday trying – unsuccessfully I might add – to figure out how to add links to a WordPress theme. Links! What theme doesn’t allow links?! Could not get that stupid theme to work the way I wanted! So I moved on to other themes. That I couldn’t seem to get to work right either. weird. Of course I woke up Saturday morning and had a huge “DUH!” moment, climbed under the warmth of the laptop and viola! Links.

I moved on to the photo-blog. Now I thought this one was ready to go a week or so ago. I had a theme that I had customized to my liking, and had already spent quite some time hacking the files to add a navigation menu. What kind of theme doesn’t have a nav menu?! But like I said, I had added one and everything looked good. Then I tried to add a post with some text, not just a photo, and that’s when things got ugly. The formatting was all effed up. And this is where I came in on Saturday. Well, I can fix this. No I can’t. After much flailing around in the files, I decided to re-install the theme. Without making a copy first! oh what a rookie mistake. Lost everything. It wasn’t hard to recreate the styling changes, but the nav bar… ugh. After working on it for more endless hours, I still wasn’t happy with the formatting and decided to go another route. I would use the Thesis theme and design it to look like the photo-blog I originally had. Brilliant. And by this time it was Sunday and my head was much clearer. This was working. I even learned how to add a 4 column widget-ready footer to Thesis. Bitchin’.

and then when I was almost finished, just adding a few more little css tweaks… ::POOF:: all my custom code was deleted! everything but the line I had just added… gone. No backup. I took a couple deep breaths and started again. Again. And let me tell you, by this time I had that code dialed. I started from the top of the page and moved down div by div, copying and saving every few steps. And I was done in no time. And let me tell you – that is some lean, clean, code baby!

Check it out – Slamdance Photography.

wow. That kinda went on for awhile eh? Guess I’ll save those deranged princesses for next time. Something to look forward to.


only mostly dead

May 13, 2010

in blog, web design

Well. Apparently my lack of blog motivation knows no bounds. I have been taking classes. Making new art. Erin turned 3. We went to Disneyland. Brother-in-law was in a motorcycle accident…



I felt that elfini has run it course and I was ready to put this little blog o’ mine out to pasture as it were. I blame the all feedback I get from updating Facebook and Twitter. I know that people are reading those because I get comments and replies! amazing. I also starting a tumblr blog and found myself posting there. I love the clean, simple look of it. But I wasn’t “writing” for that blog – just posting photos, random videos and quotes. No pressure.

But I have decided to not give up on this site. (Mostly because the ubers said how much they missed my posts and well… how can I refuse them?) So in an effort to re-ignite some passion in me for this little corner of my mind – I am going to give the site a face-lift.

Of course I’m screaming busy with Sweet Blog work (YAY!!), woefully behind on photo editing,  my house is a wreck, and let’s not even mention laundry!  You might be stuck with this basic theme for a while before I can get around to styling it up all pretty and “dawn-like”.  In the meantime, I’ll try to update more often. I’m thinking a post full of pictures of deranged Disney princesses! Sound good?


Pretty vacant

September 10, 2009

No need to be so smug about it As you know, I’ve been working on the HS Tourney website for the last couple months. Well, last week I had finally gotten it to a state of ‘almost done’. The Add and Search functions were working. The forums were almost there. It was getting close. And […]

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Mommy’s dipping in the drupal again…

August 28, 2009

I know, I’ve gone quiet again. Sorry. And I hate to keep repeating myself, but I’ve been busy. Brain-busy. But don’t worry. My next programming class starts next week, and I’m sure I’ll have plenty to complain talk about then. In the meantime, some updates: Things I learned this morning – I need to have […]

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