I’ve been a busy bee behind the scenes the last couple months putting together a few site updates, and I am excited to finally share them with you! Several changes went live this week, and I want to take a moment to highlight things that I’m hoping you’ll find helpful. Some of the items were implemented as a result of feedback I’ve received from readers, so if there is a feature you are seeking or if you experience problems with anything, please let me know! I value your thoughts and am always open to change and improvement.
New social media buttons have taken up residence on the top navigation bar, including links for Pinterest and Google+. I’m brand new to Google+, still learning the ropes, and I am looking forward to tackling the challenge. Two new pages, Help End Hunger and Press, are present as well, but I am also excited about what is behind the updated Recipes drop-down menu. Selecting the Recipe Index option will take you to the directory that I’ve had on the blog since the beginning, which displays recipes by category, but the remaining three links are associated a brand new personal recipe organization system provided by ZipList. The system includes a recipe box, meal planner, and shopping list, and here’s how it works:
At the top of each recipe, you’ll find a Save Recipe button. Select this, and you will have the option to save the recipe to a recipe box or add its ingredients to a shopping list (note that a ZipList account is required to use these features, but it’s totally free and takes just a moment to create an account). All new recipes will be entered in this format, and I hope to complete the conversion of all pre-existing recipes this coming week.
Once the recipe has been saved in your account, you can still opt to add the ingredients to a shopping list and/or add them to the meal planning calendar using the links that appear over each thumbnail.
After a recipe is added to the meal planner, it will automatically be placed in the queue but will be moved down to the scheduled section once it has been put to the calendar. The links at the top of these pages make it easy to switch between the recipe box, meal planner, and shopping list options.
The shopping list feature allows you to select items that you might want to purchase at the grocery store, easily adding and subtracting ingredients as needed for your chosen recipes, and it can also be accessed ZipList mobile app while you are out shopping.
One of the things that sold me on the ZipList package when doing my research is that the recipe box is linked to many other blogs, and users can save recipes from various sites in one central location. Simply Recipes, Leite’s Culinaria, and White on Rice Couple are a few of my favorite sites that use ZipList, and more are being added all the time (check out the complete directory here).
In terms of other changes on the blog front, I’m currently in the process of converting email subscriptions from Feedburner to MailChimp (please let me know if you notice anything wonky with these!) and will soon have a few ads placed on the site. My goal is to bring in sufficient revenue to cover the costs of blogging (which, believe it or not, are many!), but it is extremely important to me that I respect you all as my readers. If there are ever any ads that I place that make you uneasy or if you find that they detract from my content, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
I am thankful for this blog and for the resources and tools that are at my fingertips. Thank you all for making it what it is!