Step 3: ANALYZE: revamping my blog

The biggest thing that my revamped blog will need is a side bar on the left side. I want to put several widgets there, one on getting started and then a widget for each step of the DOABLE approach. This means I will need a new theme for my blog. My current theme doesn’t support a left side bar.I also want to look at my right side bar and consider changing what is over there too.

The other big area of this project is to look at my content plan and make sure that the posts I’m writing are helping to fill out all the steps of DOABLE family story project. First I’ll do one post for each step and then decide if it would be better to focus one each step for a week or a month or rotate around. I’m leaning toward focusing on each step in turn for about a month so I can really fill out the content for that step. I’ll plan on that for now and reevaluate if needed.

After I’ve picked a new theme and put the structure in place I’ll need to work on moving my old posts into the new structure. I think this should be worked on after I get the basics in place for the six steps in the DOABLE approach.

It is important at this stage to keep the LINK step in mind. I think it is time to venture out into social media and that would be a good way to share my revamped blog. I will probably start with Google+ and Pintrest.

Now for some deadlines:

  • pick new theme: Thursday, 25
  • left side bar: Monday, 29 April
  • reevaluate right bar: Tuesday, 30 April
  • getting started with the DOABLE approach post: Wednesday, 1 May
  • DECIDE basics post: Thursday, 2 May
  • ORGANIZE basics post: Monday, 6 May
  • ANALYZE basics post: Tuesday, 7 May
  • BUILD basics post: Wednesday, 8 May
  • LINK basics post: Thursday 9 May
  • EVALUATE basics post: Monday 13 May
  • move old content to new structure: Thursday, 16 May
  • start sharing with Google+: Monday, 3 June
  • start sharing with Pintrest: Monday, 1 July
  • check revamp so far and adjust content plan if needed: Tuesday 14 May
  • move forward with new content plan: Monday, 20 May

I’m not sure that my deadlines are realistic but it gives me something to shoot for and I can adjust them if I need to. I really like the idea of having the new look if not the content in place by May 1st. It sound like a great way to start a new month.

How about you? Do you have a plan in place for your next family story project?




a DOABLE approach to sharing your family stories

As I’ve contemplated ways to improve my blog it occurred to me that if you are coming here for the first time there isn’t really any help in getting started. Since my goal is to help everyone (including me) to tell their own family stories that situation isn’t a good one. Over the past year or so I’ve written posts about my story projects and other things I’ve come across. While all of that is good I think I’ve missed the mark. Since my rather chaotic brain craves order I decided I’d come up with some sort of system anyone can follow to help them share their family stories. It is still a work in progress but I think it is a good start.

D – decide

O – organize

A – analyze

B – build

L – link

E – evaluate

Decide: the very first step is to decide you want to do a story project and the decide who you want to do it about or what story you want to develop and share. What do you want to do with this project?

Organize: the next step is to organize. This step will focus on the what you already know and what you already have in the way of documents and images etc. that might help you will the story project you are working on.

Analyze: in this step you want to really look hard at your goal. What do you need to do? Do you have all the information you need? What else do you need and where might you find it? What do you need to learn to complete this project? Plan your project out in as much detail as you can and give yourself deadlines along the way.

Build: do the work, follow the plan, keep on moving forward. Keep your purpose in mind and work past any obstacles that get in your way.

Link: share your story project with as many people as you can in as many ways as you can.

Evaluate: the good, the bad and the ugly. What would you do the same if you had to do it all again, what would you do different. Then armed with your new knowledge start the process over with a new story project.


So what does this all mean? I’ll need to restructure my blog to show the DOABLE approach with the goal in mind that anyone can come here and find what they need to get started or keep moving forward with their own family story projects. Hey, I think this whole DOABLE approach might work for this too. I’ve decided on a new vision for my blog. Next step is to organize what I already have on here with the DOABLE approach in mind. Then I will  analyze what is missing and make a plan for how to fill it in. While I’m working through the DOABLE steps I can learn more about how to improve it too! I’m really excited about my new goal.

How about join me on this journey? Start with step one, decide on a family story project (or even something else) that you want to do and we can test out my DOABLE approach together.

My Current Projects: Goals and Progress

Evaluate Goals for last week:

++ print goals for the week – complete
++ post at least once per day, Monday to Saturday – I want to get more posts done on other people’s work, but I didn’t get that done.
++ send reference images to Kim for the Horizon – I sent some images and links to Kim, plus I talked to her about the illustration and I think that was helpful.
++ finish adding links to blog – I got this done, I’m not all that happy with the way I have some of this set up but it will do for now.
++ finish Casey’s book – I got it uploaded, ordered and even got it back! Good job Blurb.
+    Send info on MS Sibijak – I almost gave up on this goal, then I decided I could upload all the images I have of the Sibijak to my SmugMug site and send off a link. I got them uploaded but haven’t composed the email yet with some historical information.
–    2 hours on Key West Audio transcribing – zilch on this.
+10 rate my progress

Progress on projects not on my goal list:

I got several of the Europe 1952 posts – 60 Years Ago Today – done ahead.

Goals for this week:

  1. print goals for the week
  2. post at least once per day, Monday to Saturday
  3. Send info on MS Sibijak
  4. talk to my dad about the Key West Audios – I need a different tactic
  5. Get Volume 6 – Our Family moving forward again
  6. rate my progress

Still struggling to get more done in a day. Do I just need more focus? Am I wasting too much time? Not sure the answer but hoping for inspiration. So much to do and I don’t think I’m making enough progress. Any suggestions?