About Me

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Five years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Monday, May 17, 2010

To Monetize, or Not to Monetize...

That is the question. Amazon has been dangling an offer to link to them, and if you order the books I’ve been reading, then they pay me something. Similar options are available for other businesses I patronize. Sometimes I am tempted, most days I am not.

I grew up out West. I come from ruggedly independent stock. The fact that I joined the Church when I was a young adult and have stayed with it for 30+ years, still occasionally surprises me. The fact that I have borne and reared five children, and not left one or all behind somewhere, astounds me. [I’m not talking about that time in the elevator in a skyscraper in downtown Dallas; I’m talking about the urge to flee which came over me from time to time, when I was overwhelmed at the enormity of what I had undertaken.]

When I was attending the Friends Church as a teenager in Boise, and they had a revival, I resisted the urge to walk up front and make a commitment. When the children’s father [briefly] joined the John Birch Society, I did not. I have been a short-term member of the Dallas Handweavers and Spinners Guild; the Quilters Guild of Dallas (twice); the Poets Association of North Texas, and my voter registration card thinks I’m a Republican.

I have also been married, and divorced, twice. Though I really, truly tried to stay joined, that second time.

More money, honestly gained, is a pleasant option. If I went with AdSense, you would see lots of knitting books in my sidebar. If I went with the Affiliates program, you would have a pretty good idea where to find me on the days I have disposable income.

And still, I resist. This blog is, in many respects, my journal. I think of my paper journals lined up on the shelf, and I cannot imagine them with advertising in the margins. [Though if they had it, it would be for Deseret Book or the local LDS bookstore (or the bishops’ storehouse, where you can’t buy anything, anyway).]

And partly, it is for the same reason that nobody posts a comment here without my consent. What if they recommended a knitting book that I loathed? What if an ad for Planned Parenthood slipped in? I am frequently amused at the ads that appear in my sidebar on Facebook; some of them are right on target, and some of them irritate the fire out of me.

And then there is the responsibility which I have, because of my calling, to emulate Caesar’s wife and be above reproach. Until they start publishing ads that say "keep the law of chastity; pay your tithing; be kind; get out of debt; plant a garden; keep a journal, etc.", I have no guarantee that what would appear here would not only be inoffensive, but would edify.

In other news, I have opted not to renew my subscription to RealSimple. I like the magazine, overall; I just don’t have time for it at the moment, and that makes one less thing to recycle each month. I have also unsubscribed from their email newsletter. Right now, I am not in the mood to cook, so their typically excellent recipes are wasted on me. And I don’t know that I will ever be able to justify paying what they think is a moderate price for an article of clothing. I look at those prices and think, “Oh, really? People actually pay that? Not in my world.”

In this I am very much like my father, who believed you should never have to pay more than $3.50 for a decent steak. (Because he grew up on a farm, where they raised corn and a few head of beef cattle. I can remember one of my cousins lifting a calf up to the car window so I could pet it, when I was a little girl.)

Last night, I spent a little while working on what I laughingly call my budget. Updated my Excel spreadsheet to reflect all the bills I will pay on Friday. It is getting progressively easier to stick to my budget. Working out each day makes it easier to just-say-no to that double-chocolate muffin, which helps both my budget and my waistline.

Because I am only buying food for one, I can afford better quality than I could when the girls were little. I love having apples and carrots and clementines in the fridge, bread in the freezer, strawberries and bananas on my cereal in the morning. I am eating more fruit and drinking less fruit juice.

I do need to increase my veggie intake; time to hit the freezer case for more veggie steamers, and next Saturday I will want to hit Town Talk for more cheese. I find that I like the Smuckers Natural PB with Honey much better than just the plain PB, and it saves a step. I keep a jar in the fridge at work, and sometimes here at home as well, though at home I would rather just eat Nutella.

My informal review of the Lean Cuisine fettuccine alfredo? It’s OK. I don’t like mine peppery, and this was. I suppose they do that because it is reduced fat. I had it for lunch after church yesterday (went home early again because of the fumes) and had the Easy Mac alfredo for dinner, as a taste comparison. Verdict? I like the flavor of the Easy Mac better, but the texture of the sauce and noodles better in the Lean Cuisine. Maybe the solution is to cook up one of each, stir them together, and divide the results in half.

Just for grins, I checked out the doll websites. I do not like any of the ones Soom has put on the marketplace this year (good thing for my budget, no?). I still like the DoB "Libra"; I think I like her even better than Arie, because her face reminds me of Middlest’s when she was tiny. That will be a next-year purchase, possibly when I get my bonus in April, more likely as a treat to celebrate being out of debt next September. But for now? not even tempted.


Suburban Correspondent said...

AdSense from Google is no good (at least, 2 years ago it wasn't) - no control over the ads, and the ads don't even match your readership very well (I kept getting puppy obedience ads on my page whenever I talked about toilet-training my 3-year-old). Also, you only get money when people click on the ad, and even then not so much.

The Affiliates program is a little better - the books tend to match up with your interests. But again, people have to click.

I really like BlogHer Ads - you should apply to join their network. You are paid by impression (view), rather than your readers being obligated to click on an ad on your page. You are given a whole list of types of ads when you sign on and told to mark any of the ones you wouldn't accept. I really like that. I think there may be a waiting list, but I'm not sure.

Jenni said...

The best Lean Cuisines (in my opinion) are the Spa Cuisines in the blue boxes. They have whole grain rice and noodles and more veggies. I also really like the chicken enchilada one and the fiesta grilled chicken.