Friday, July 31, 2009

And the winners are...

1. Mallory = 824 (Check out Mallory's new blog!)

2. Jess = 712 (Sent your cards)

3. Christopher and Sarah = 467
Sarah seems to have disqualified herself by typing "Hook 'em Horns" in the comment section of an obviously Aggie blog. So sad. Sorry, but we don't allow obscenity here. (Got your e-mail) (Check out Sarah's new blog!)

4. PuNgOhGuRl = 256 (Got your e-mail) (Check out Sarah's new blog!)

5. Julia = 247 (Got your e-mail) (Check out Julia's new blog!)

6. Amanda Sikes = 213 (Got your e-mail) (Check out Amanda's new blog!)

7. The Silvas = 202 (Got your e-mail) (Check out Megan's new blog!)

8. Bethany = 45

9. Kelly = 39

10. Erica = 36

Congratulations to the winners! E-mail me so I can send you the form for a new blog, or to let me know that you'd rather have the thank you cards (and tell me what kind of colors and things you like for them!)

And if you didn't win? You can still get one - visit Blogs by Mandy for pricing and e-mail me with your order!


Wow. This was an exciting contest. I mean, for me. For you, it was probably pretty tedious. Seriously. You guys are committed.

I thought I'd take a moment to answer some of the questions you guys asked in the string of comments. If I forget some of them, feel free to re-ask (or ask new ones) and I’ll answer those as well.

Did you ever dream the contest would get this big?

No way! I thought I’d get about 50 comments on this post! If I thought it would get to 3,000 comments, would I have offered another blog makeover for every 100 comments? Nope. (Good thing I capped it at ten because Eeeeyyaaahhh!!!!) But it was really fun to watch – people actually showed up at certain times to chat! Crazy. Makes me feel like getting a BlogFrog forum. Maybe I will. Would anybody actually post there?

Did you get an e-mail every time you got a comment?/Did you read all the comments?

Yes. To both of those.

How did you count all of these up?

I didn’t, actually. The numbers above are just arbitrary numbers I assigned to the commenters based on how much I thought they commented.

Just kidding.

I actually had them delivered automatically to a specific folder in my e-mail client, which allowed me to sort them by name. After I did that, I selected all the messages from one person at a time and had it mark only those as “unread,” so the total “unread” count would be the person’s tally. It wasn’t too hard, though I’m guessing there are easier ways of doing it. Oh well.

What are your weekend plans?

Jack will be competing at a tournament, so I’m going to watch him, and after that, I’m thinking I might have a few blogs to work on. I don’t know, like maybe ten.

How ya feelin’ tonight?

Pretty good! Still a little sick, but nothing a few shots of whiskey won't fix. Just kidding.

I found you on facebook, and it isn’t the first time.

Yeah, Jess, I realize that’s not a direct quote. Or a question. But I still would like to take this opportunity to publically call you a stalker. Stalker!

Wanna know a really annoying way to start your morning?


How can I become a fan of your blog on facebook?

That was a real question. I didn't just write that to plug my Facebook fan page. But I'll gladly take the opportunity.

There's a link on my sidebar to do this, but this is the Jack and Mandy blog fan page and you can also become a fan of Blogs by Mandy on facebook too!

How did you and Jack meet? It’s not often that you have a couple who’s 7 years apart that met when one of them was in their teens!

I just wrote this answer and decided that it was long enough to be its own post. So it shall be its own post.

How did you get into blog design?

I started learning about blog design because I wanted to make my blogs pretty. I knew how to do digital scrapbooking, so I just designed headers and such instead of pages and learned the HTML to create a cohesive look. Someone asked me if I would design theirs, and I agreed. When asked how much I would charge, I told her to make a donation to the Multiple Sclerosis Society for my Bike MS ride and that would be good enough. I kept doing that, and I raised about $3,000 for this year’s ride blog designing, and Blogs by Mandy was born.

I’ll be honest: I don’t make much money at it. I probably would if I worked harder at marketing and charged people more, but what I love about this business is that I have something to donate to bloggers looking to do giveaways to raise money for their causes, AND I always have something to give away on my own blog when I want to do a contest (like this one!).

I know that sounds a little silly, but it’s fun to give stuff away, and for some reason, blog makeovers make people ridiculously happy! At this point, with all the HTML templates I have created, it only takes me a few hours to create a blog, so to me, it’s totally worth my time to make somebody happy. Plus, free blog makeovers bring in paying blog orders sometimes too.

I also donate at least 30% of what I make when I actually do charge to a charity I choose each month, so that’s a nice way for me to be able to donate to a cause I care about even when I don’t have a bunch of extra money to donate to them from my own pocket.

How did you learn how to do the HTML stuff for blog design? Did you get a computer degree?

My degree is in Telecommunication Media Studies, which is a little technical but not on the programming side. I went into blog design with some very basic knowledge of HTML, but most of what I know I learned by googling specific questions I had about the HTML as I designed. There are a LOT of tutorials out there on how to do stuff like this!

Is there a place on your blog where you share your blog design tips?

I have written a few posts on blog design, and I plan to write many more. I've said before that I believe anybody can learn this stuff - it's pretty easy. I think people hire me because they're short on time, not the ability to learn, so I don't think I'm taking business away from myself by teaching others. And if I am? Oh well. I usually give them away free anyway.

But to answer your question, yes, there's a "Blog Design Tips" Label on my blog. I will probably add a NavBar soon so it's easier to find, but again, it looks like I need to design ten other blogs before I can do that!


PuNgOhGuRl said...

Thanks again! That was fun.

Stalker :) said...

Well hello there, Mandy!!!! Let me just say that there were some times when the comments became sparse and I had to think of something! Therefore, my FB page was open and someone started a chat with me. So....I just decided it would be fun to search for you and then tell you I had!!!

That's all!!! Hope you know that I wouldn't ever do anything to harm you in any way. Or Jack for that matter!!! :)

Maybe you've been reading some nasty blog comments somewhere else and had me confused with someone entirely different. *Mallory will TOTALLY know what I am referring to!!!*

Right, Mallory?!?!?!?!

Anyway, in all seriousness...this was fun, but I am glad it's FINALLY done!

Bring on those cards!

Mandy and Jack said...

Oh Jess you funny girl!! You know I was kidding! I do that all the time too! hehehe

Jacky said...

Wow. So, I left like 3 comments and feel totally unimportant now. =)

Mallory said...

I do know what Jess is referring to.

And if she's a stalker, SO AM I! =)

And seriously, seeing this makes me realize just how weird and crazy I am. But you like that about me, right?



This was fun! Thanks for giving me a blog makeover! I'm glad it's done, too, haha.

Julia said...

i emailed you back mandy!! so excited. and yes, Jess totally is a stalker. she called me at 10:00 friday night... seriously... who does that??? ;)

i love you jess! and you too mandy!! i totally look forward to getting to know you more.. will have to find you on facebook.