Unlike prior “test posts” which literally only 3 people saw on my request, this is a Real Test, and an announcement of sorts.

I’ve finally made good on a goal I’ve had for a long while: creating my own website that can serve as a single platform for all of my blogs. As of last night, all of my prior blogs – 127 posts total, according to the cool new data view I get from this platform – have been moved over. I’ve been taking my time going through each one and doing some minor but much needed editing. I’ve still got a few to go (the 3 most recent Travel blogs), but otherwise it’s as good as it gets for now.

The blogs come in two flavors:

  • Living in the Gray, which is where my personal entries are. I’ve been woefully silent on this one for awhile for many reasons but have a feeling this may inspire me to finally get some stuff out my head that’s been brewing for awhile.
  • Travel, which is where – duh – all of my prior travel blogs are. Twelve in total – seems hard to believe. And after much thought, for now I decided to list them in the sub–menu chronologically. I also believe if you happen to be new to the travel blogs, that’s the best way to read them as well – from the bottom up. That’s the way I’ve been editing them and I realized there is a progression to them, both in travel content as well as to the backstory of our lives which is told through each.

Eventually I’m going to monetize this thing and see how that goes, but I still have some research to do before I do that. I’ve learned a lot in the past couple of months I’ve been slowly working on this to know that hobby blogging and professional blogging are very different, so want to make sure I have a better understanding of the behind-the-scenes stuff before I allow ads on my site.

Here’s where the Test comes in: This is the first entry I’m posting in real time. Well, technically the 2nd (thanks to Jon, Tracy and Debbie for helping with the first!, which has since been removed). But this is the first I’m posting and leaving up, and testing the sharing function through other social media platforms. No other way to see if that works :).

One of the many reasons I wanted to do this was to have an easy, central place for all readers of my blogs to interact with. In the past, they were all over the place, with the predominant place being Facebook. What that meant were readers on other platforms, or those who I’d just sent the links to via email because they don’t do social media at all, never saw the interaction. And the interaction, I believe, is a meaningful part of the content, especially when folks ask questions about what they read.

So my hope and request is that all comments going forward get posted directly here, instead of on Facebook. My preference was always that comments get added directly to each post, but Google’s Blogger tool didn’t make that easy because you had to have a Google Circles account to do so, and I certainly understood people’s reluctance to create a whole account they wouldn’t otherwise use just for that.

But on this platform, it’s simple to do, doesn’t require a whole different account, and I’m excited about the prospect of getting all that in one place. You are still, of course, welcome to send me stuff directly via email, that is always welcome.

But for those of you who would like to play going forward, I would love it if you’d do two things:

  1. Subscribe to the blog, which you can do from just about page on it, which will send you notifications of new entries to the email of your choice. (And you’ll get an email with a link to confirm – be sure to check your spam/junk folder if you don’t see it…)
  2. Comment somewhere on it so you can see how easy it is, especially if you’ve been a commenter before.

The above actions will also give me an opportunity to see how this works when more people start interacting, which I need to understand before I decide to go super public with it. (And I just saw something in Preview that said there are 395 subscribers, which I know is not right – only 3 that I’m aware of, the aforementioned Jon, Debbie, Tracy – so will have to figure that out. Also the actual bullets and numbers that look right in edit don’t show up in Preview, so will see if it looks different when I actually Publish. All that mostly for my benefit so I don’t forget…) [Update: part of the mystery has been solved. Apparently when I linked my Facebook account it factored in all of my connections there as well. Now to just figure out the dang bullets…]

So that’s it. And just to complete the test function, I’m adding a photo I took yesterday with my new selfie stick. I realized when I did the Puerto Vallarta trip that it would have come in handy so broke down after overcoming my reluctance to be one of “those people” Dan and I used to make fun of. Careful what you judge and all that….

My first self-stick selfie, June 23, 2018

My first self-stick selfie, June 23, 2018

Was able to add the caption and Alt Text in the process of uploading this. So if you’re using a screen reader, let me know if that worked!

And away we go. For some reason I’m really nervous hitting “publish”….


PS: Did anyone else hear “for the next 60 seconds,…” in their head after reading the title of the post?


  1. Debbie Colbath June 25, 2018 at 6:39 am - Reply

    Love that face and the picture. I’m sooo looking forward to all of this!

    • sghaas63 June 25, 2018 at 6:41 am - Reply

      Me, too ;)

  2. Lisa Evans June 24, 2018 at 6:11 pm - Reply

    Let the journeys continue. Love traveling with you!

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 6:16 pm - Reply

      Hi, Lisa! Thanks to see you here, thanks for playing :) Yes, they will absolutely continue!

  3. Mary June 24, 2018 at 1:38 pm - Reply

    Hey you. Have never tried a selfie stick but I agree better than falling off a cliff, etc. Lol. You look great in the picture boy!

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 1:57 pm - Reply

      Hi, Mary – thanks! Good to see you here! And yes, I have a feeling I will use it more than I thought I would. It can also be set up as a little tri-pod, so opens up all kinds of opportunities ?

  4. Mary Lou Willett June 24, 2018 at 11:10 am - Reply

    Amazing job, Steve.

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 11:34 am - Reply

      Thanks, Mary Lou!

  5. Jon Scott June 24, 2018 at 11:09 am - Reply

    Yay! Out to the masses now. Buena suerte ?

    Ok nice my name and email are already filled in and this is from my iphone.

    I guess I’ve been away from the emergency alert system too long. Didn’t hear “for the next 60 seconds”

    One more thing. I like the font used here ?

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 11:38 am - Reply

      Sweet, glad that was easy for you! And glad you like the font, haven’t quite figured out if I have control over that :) I’m sure I do, just haven’t paid attention to it…

  6. Susan Chieffo June 24, 2018 at 9:06 am - Reply


    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 11:35 am - Reply

      Knew I’d see you here ;) Successful, thanks!

  7. Nora June 24, 2018 at 8:14 am - Reply

    Great to see you face, Steve. ?

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 8:32 am - Reply

      Thanks, Nora – happy to see you here. We are overdue ?

  8. Loretta Abbott June 24, 2018 at 8:09 am - Reply

    I am looking forward to reading more.

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 8:10 am - Reply

      Thanks, Loretta!

  9. Aune June 24, 2018 at 7:36 am - Reply

    I’ve never tested well, but good to see your face. ?

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 8:07 am - Reply

      You passed this test ;) Great to see you, Aune! Thanks for playing…

  10. Tracy Threlfall June 24, 2018 at 7:31 am - Reply

    And yes, your pic came up on the small screen.

  11. Tracy Threlfall June 24, 2018 at 7:31 am - Reply

    I heard ‘this is ONLY a test.’ Love you and can’t wait to read when you start writing about living in the grey. Love you long time. ;)

  12. Suzy Cornell June 24, 2018 at 7:29 am - Reply

    This is going to be fun! Can’t wait to spend some time with this. Great selfie, Steve.

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 7:32 am - Reply

      Thanks, Suzy!

  13. Susie Peyton June 24, 2018 at 7:19 am - Reply

    Be careful with that selfie stick!

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 7:32 am - Reply

      Absolutely :) Thanks, Susie!

  14. Joey Boyd-Scott June 24, 2018 at 7:19 am - Reply

    Hi, good morning Steve. Not sure I’ve ever commented before but thought I’d help with your test. I did not hear for the next 60…. I guess I’ve been out of the US long enough lol

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 7:33 am - Reply

      I guess that is an American thing :). Thanks for playing, Joey!

  15. Mel June 24, 2018 at 7:14 am - Reply

    Ok I will comment that if you didn’t use a selfie stick you may fall off a cliff or lose your phone. Yes this is a test made me read faster than 60 seconds. I am gonna share this on Twitter look out I have about 10 followers!

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 7:17 am - Reply

      Great to see you here since you are, as I’ve said in my prior posts, the original inspiration :). I don’t “get” Twitter so don’t have an account, which I why I didn’t add an option for sharing it there. Guess I’ll need to fix that. Dang it.

    • sghaas63 June 24, 2018 at 12:22 pm - Reply

      Mel – OK, I caved and set up a Twitter account, and linked it here. So now easier for you to share with your 10 followers. Especially since I don’t have any yet ;) Couldn’t find you, what name are you using?

I'd love to hear from you!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Subscribe to the Blog

Enter your email address to subscribe to my blog, which will provide notifications of new posts. Soon after you enter your email address below, you will receive one to confirm your subscription. Check your spam/junk folder if you don’t see it.