Monday, April 18, 2011

The Torkona Award II - Extension

Okay, rush rush.. let me type away as fast as I can!

Due to unforseen circumstances (ie. baby, which actually is totally forseen) I am EXTENDING the deadline for The Torkona Award II, Your First Born Birth Story.

New deadline to submit your entry is now prior to 1st of May 2011.

Just so much easier for me to extend the deadline at this point in time.

I've already received some great entries, but there is still a chance for others to have a crack.

Hope you use this extension wisely and submit your post for this blog award.

The Torkona Award II, Your First Born Birth Story.

Good luck!

Now, I'm off to get some serious sleep before our firstborn arrives!!! :-)  EEEEK!!

- tork

Tork's blog badges

Want to flog my blog?  Awesome!  Here are my badges that you can add to your blog.

I've been working hard on making them myself. I hope you like them, they took me ages!

If you like them, I am thinking about offering my services to make ones similar for your own blog or site.  I wouldn't start this just yet, I am currently taking expressions of interest to do this for people.

If you would ever consider paying a small fee I'd love to know.  Drop me a comment and I might consider it in the future.  Anything that helps pay for my firstborn little baby ;-)

- tork

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Songs to Inspire - Song 13

Feeling unmotivated? Need inspiration? Need to be inspired?

Inspiration comes from within, you just sometimes need to be reminded - Torkona

Every Sunday I post a song to help you find your inspiration.

Humans are amazing creatures.  We can do anything if we put our minds to it.  Every now and then a freak comes along that does something new that blows your mind.  "How is it even possible?" you might ask.  "Is it real?"

Yep.  The following singer entered into a female singing competition and came second.  Crazy..

I hope it inspires your spine to tingle a little bit :-)

- tork

Friday, April 15, 2011

Dear NAB

Dear NAB,

Thank you for not processing my payment today, that was lovely of you.

I don't often enjoy receiving my salary.  Having my bank balance go up is gross, blergh!

Thanks for letting me know also that you are more than likely going to process my wages in five days time instead.

This will also work for me being unable to try and move any of this money into my other accounts to decrease interest that I pay to you guys, due to you also telling us that you wont be able to process any money tansfers for a whole week because of Easter.

This is great, I love paying more interest than I am usually required to.

Oh, and perfect timing by not processing payments, just like that time in December last year where you also decided not to pay anyone.  My firstborn baby is due any day now and I would rather have no money at all than to feed and clothe it or pay for all the medical bills.

I am sure the $5 I have made from GoogleAds on my blog will at least see me through the next few weeks.

By now NAB, you can see that I am being sarcastic.

Get ready for one angry dude on your doorsteps demanding compensation.  I will also be asking for compensation for the purchase of one jar of Vaseline.  I'm not sure how much it costs just yet but I will bring the receipt.

Why compensation for Vaseline?

Well, you will thank me for the purchase as after I print this letter I shall be rolling it very tightly and inserting it fair and square up your backside, you worthless, unorgainsed, soon to be ex-bank.

Yours Sincerley

- tork

ps. go f**k yourself

Monday, April 11, 2011

Counting down the days to fatherhood

The time is so very close to becoming parents for the first time for us.

We are so anxious, but can hardly wait.

Be aware that my posts will become brief and rare.

If I go silent for long enough, it might be safe to assume I'm a gloating daddy and too busy for a silly blog! :-)

I hope for nothing more than a healthy bundle of joy.

I hope for nothing more than an easy birth for my wife.

I hope for everything to be perfect.

To catch up on everything so far, here's my baby posts in order:

Should we tell everyone what the gender of our baby is?

How to choose a name for your baby 

Unborn babies speak to their mother from the womb through dreams

Third Trimester - It's slowly starting to sink in

Our baby is too small for the third trimester

Why baby is a bit small

An anxious wait, not long until baby is born

Can't wait to tell the whole story, when I am able to.

- tork

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Songs to Inspire - Song 12

Feeling unmotivated? Need inspiration? Need to be inspired?

Inspiration comes from within, you just sometimes need to be reminded - Torkona

Every Sunday I post a song to help you find your inspiration.

Today, I want you to dance.

I spend about five minutes each day with an impromtu dance in my house.  Either I have a tune in my head, or a song is on the telly.

Or, I am on YouTube listening to songs like this.

Fat boy slim - Weapon of Choice.

I hope it inspires you to dance like nobody is watching, wherever you may be.

- tork

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

An anxious wait, not long until baby is born

I am yet to start panicking.  We are weeks away from the birth of our first baby.

Baby's room is complete.

Wife is grumpy and I am simply taking it on the chin.  She's been through a lot.

The good news is, we've been told that we will reach a full term pregnancy.

Several weeks ago, being told that we were likely to be giving birth to a premature baby scared the smelly stuff out of us. Now to be told that there is no reason we can make full term is just amazing.

To think, our baby was in the 3rd percentile of amniotic fluid levels, now we sit slightly above average.  It is amazing what rest can do for you.

But now, I worry for every step my wife steps over, every slope she walks down.  Every time she yells my name out makes me wonder, "is it time?".

But I'm yet to start worrying.

I wonder what baby will look like.  I hope that everything will go smoothly.

I know we will be in good hands, but for now, we just wait.

And I deal with a grumpy wife that is over being pregnant, and I deal with the excitement of knowing we will soon be having a new born baby in our lives.

Can't wait to teach it how to play computer games...

- tork

Monday, April 4, 2011

What every blogger needs to know

I've been around a lot of different locations since I starting blogging.  During my 'travels' I've noticed little things that people could change to improve their blogging.

I am no where near what I would call an 'experienced blogger' but I have seen some people with experience do so many simple things wrong.

Don't feel bad if you are doing any of these that I will mention below.  With blogging, you learn something new everyday.

To help out, I thought I would compile a list of the basic things that every single blogger should know.

Join a Blogging Community
To start off with, blogging communities are great.  What better way is there to get help and exposure for your blog than to join a blogging community.  This is helpful in a numbers of ways.
  1. You can ask any questions that you may have about blogging
  2. You can learn new information
  3. You increase exposure for your blog
I highly recommend joining them. There are a lot of blog forums out there, as well as forums that suit your niche.  I recommend using ones that allow you to create your signature so you can add a link to your blog after every post you make.  I will expand further on this why it is important.

Here are some blogging forums that I recommend:

Learn Simple HTML code
I have a more than basic website coding knowledge and this is seriously helpful when using a site such as blogger.  But you do not need to have advanced knowledge, you just need to know the basics.

What the important thing to know is how to type in HTML language URL links.

Let me show you some basic code:

<a href="">Aussie Dad blog</a>

Every URL link will start with <a href=. Your code will always want to start with this.

Next is the site address that you want people to visit.  This is your URL enclosed in quotation marks. ""> 

Don't forget to include the brackets in the code above (the '<' and '>').  This is what tells your browser whatever is included in these brackets is HTML code.

Next is a description of your link.  Aussie Dad blog

My description is 'Aussie Dad blog'. This is what words I want to have displayed on my site as the link for people to click.  You never want to have your description to be the URL.  You want to have words that describe the link as this increases your Google ranking on these keywords. A lot of the pro's even get this wrong.

Finally, after you have completed your description, end it with </a> to notify the end of your link.

I can't stress how handy this is to know.  The amount of times you see a comment on a forum or post of just a URL without linked as above, I just wanted to let you all know there is a better way.  This is really help your blog, especially with Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

If it is too much typing out each time when telling someone a link, simply save it as a Notepad file on your desktop and open it when you need it.

Forum URL Posting
Some forums have the ability to post a URL link as HTML.  Others have an included button that when you press it comes up as per the below:
Took me a while to figure out how to add my URL links properly.  This is how most people will do it:
This will show your link as the URL on your forum post, but as I have said previously, to increase your search engine ranking, you need to type a descriptive link.  To fix it, this is how you type your link:
[URL=]Aussie Dad blog[/URL]
The time I wasted figuring that out was a bit annoying, so hopefully this will help you out.

Help Followers
I love following blogs.  Although it is hard to always say hello, I still read the majority that I follow.  However, I mainly follow blogs that have  "Follow with Google Friend Connect" widget.

As a blogger, you need to realise that every user that comes to your blog has their own way that they follow blogs.  If you don't provide the most commonly used functionalities on the internet for people to follow, then you are missing the opportunity to gain more readers.  You need to set up an RSS feed, a post emailer and the Google Follow widget. Visit Feedburner for the first two and check your widget list through the Design section of your blogging tool for the Follow widget.

The has been conjecture as to whether RSS feeds are on the decline and more are looking towards email, but I would use both as well as the Google Follow to cover all your bases to never miss a subscriber!

Spring Cleaning
As you blog away, your blog will become full of posts, blog badges and maybe ads. It is always a good idea to do some 'spring cleaning' of your site if things start to feel cluttered.

I am the first to put their hand up to say things are getting cluttered, so make time to freshen up your site occasionally to look professional and well maintained.  Finding time is the hard part, so long as you remember to always chip away at trying to clean up the place.

Learn from the best
I would be lost without the help of professional bloggers, or at least those with information that you find easy to understand.

The one blogger that I would recommend above others would be a fellow Aussie. Problogger is helping me daily with very informative information, from himself and numerous guest posters from around the world.

Problogger currently has a great eBook designed to help you revitalize your blog by giving you 31 tasks in 31 days. I highly recommend it. Click here to view more details

I also recommend following bloggers in your own niche.  You learn a lot from others just by visiting and reading their own posts.

You can also follow me, if you must ;-)

Now, this is just a basic list.  Hope this helps.  But there has to be a lot more tips of what every blogger needs to know.  I feel that this is going to be constantly updated, so feel free to bookmark this page and return every now and then.

What tips do you think that every blogger needs to know?

- tork

Times are not kept in updates or hashtags

Do you blog?  Do you write? Do you enjoy reading blogs?

I love it, all of it. With my writing, I like to think "You never know what you are going to get".

Don't know why I enjoy it.  I find it sort of a lost art, especially poetry.

I love poetry, well, most of the time. I've posted a few originals that you might like to read:

Evening Rest
Australia Day Poem

I am a Shakespeare fan.  As the kiddies say, "Big ups to my main man Willy.  I give you props"


Let me quote to you Romeo & Juliet.

What smell through yonder window breaks?
It is the east and Juliet just farted.

I think thats how it goes.

Anyway, what I wanted to say is, write, keep writing or start writing.

Times are not kept in Facebook updates nor Twitter hashtags. Stories are held for our future.

And you can quote me on that.

So write for your future memories. Write to express. Write from the heart.

As my blog help tip of the day, readers/followers can tell when you write for Google. You won't keep folks hitting that follow button if they aren't interested!

That's what I try do. I try to tell my stories, even when writing things that aren't artsy fartsy.

Anyway, I hope it gives at least one person motivation to write something amazing, anything.

If you're lost for ideas, there is always my blog award currently running: The Torkona Award II - Your First Born Birth Story

Have a crack at writing whatever you feel.  In years time, give yourself something to look back on.

- tork 

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Songs to Inspire - Song 11


Feeling unmotivated? Need inspiration? Need to be inspired?

Inspiration comes from within, you just sometimes need to be reminded - Torkona

Every Sunday I post a song to help you find your inspiration.

This week, I am making up for last week.  I didn't provide a song to help inspire. I was just too busy.  So, I am making up for it with two songs, and I am pulling out the big guns.

These songs are perhaps the two biggest songs that I find inspiring.

This first one pulls on your heart strings.  It is one of my all time favourites.

Johnny Cash covers a Nine Inch Nails song called "Hurt" in 2002.  This was one of his final hit releases before his death. He died in 2003. It was critically acclaimed and named best video of the year at the Grammy Awards and Country Music Awards.

It makes me want to cry, and sometimes it does.  It is inspires me to just let go and do it. I hope you find it equally as moving.

This next one is by Ben Folds Five.  It is called "Brick".

This song is about the emotions and feelings that the singer (Ben Folds) went through during a tough time.  When he was young, he and his girlfriend at the time found out they were pregnant.  The two young kids were unintentionally pregnant. Being young, they decided to abort the pregnancy, this is how he shows the world what he went though and how he felt.

It inspires me to show the world, and my own little world, how I feel, no matter how tough it might be.

I know, these two songs might seem as sad as all hell, but sometimes it's good to let it out.

Let it inspire you to just, let it out.

If it's too much sad, here are some monkeys :-)

Have a great day!

- tork

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Dear Jennifer Lopez..


Dear Jennifer Lopez,

I just wanted to congratulate you on your latest song "On the Floor".  I've got a link below here for you to watch if you haven't seen your film clip just yet (I wasn't sure how busy you've been).

I just wanted to ask if you could perhaps put a little bit more effort into your song writing. I am sorry, this song is fun to listen to, but it really shits me at the same time. If you haven't written it, fire your songwriting team.

Rhyming "Floor" with "Floor" several times over?  Genius!  (please note the sarcasm)

Seriously, how hard is it to find other words that rhyme with floor?  Here is a list of words that would have been suitable:

more chore war whore
lore poor four core
door saw wore bore
gore gnaw sore snore
your boar roar or

I will even give you a few sentences that you could add into your song.  There's still time to change it to make it much less annoying.

  • I like drinking heaps, then I go to bed and I will snore
  • There's a buffet here, lots for me to eat and gnaw
  • Stop fighting now please, there's no time for you to war
  • I like movie shows, but I think Bieber is a whore
  • I like to shake my butt, when boys see me they go "Phwaar!"

There.  A lot of different lines for you.  Just FYI, 'Phwaar' is an Aussie term.  It's a noise that is made when someone sees a person they find attractive enough to 'make it with'.  So, very appropriate for your songs.

I hope that you see this letter before radio stations play this song further to death.  So that would mean you've got about five seconds.

Thanks J-Lo. Keep on, err, backin' it up like a tonka truck *sigh*


- tork