Monday, January 30, 2012

Watching My Life Flash Before My Eyes 1999-2004

I have been watching my life flash before my eyes the past few days. It started a couple of weeks ago when I was unexpectedly given one week's notice that my Christian Activities website was going to have to be moved within a week. For a year I had been told it was going to be moved to Word Press, but suddenly I had to find a new server and web designer.

Under normal circumstances, this would have been the death knell to Christian Activities happening at this time, because my own circumstances are not normal right now. I am dealing with the aftermath of massive flood and water damage, recovering from living in a Microtel for 9 months, and putting up with contractors who insist upon needless delays, ridiculous shortcuts and sloppy work. I am also having to pay for many things Farmers Insurance is not covering: mold remediation, rotten wood replacement under my house and other repairs. A couple of thousand dollars worth of vet bills for a sick dog helped push me deeper into a bad financial situation.

In the best of circumstances, one week's notice would not allow a business with normal resources to find a new web designer and get a site moved to a new server. In my situation, I had no funds to pay someone to help my move a website and host it, nor did I have the luxury of time to get proposals.

Fortunately for me, I have a cousin who is a computer whiz offer to help me save my 20-year-old business and 17-year web presence. However, the code or program for the old site design, (which was originally written in 1999 for a site called Tennesseek that never made it off the ground and then showcased on the Christian Activities site) presented problems during the transfer process. My cousin was able to transfer it to a new server, but well over 1200 articles of the 7,000 articles needed to be divided into Book Reviews and Movies from the general Articles category as well as tweaked for line breaks and extra tags. That has been my task -- to go through those articles, separate the Movie and Book articles and remove code and tags.

At first it was drudgery. Yesterday I posted on Facebook: Change category, reformat, save. Change category, reformat, save. Change category, reformat, save. Change category, reformat, save. I am going to be doing this in my sleep all night long!

However, as I have progressed I have begun to read some of the articles, and that has started me on a nostalgic journey down memory lane. The earliest articles are from Oct. 1999, and I have just made it through Oct. 2004. I have relived a new millennium; Worship City Praise; 9-11; movies like The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, The Passion of the Christ; the Left Behind books; as well as books, movies and events long forgotten.

I have gone back in time to watch bands come and go, music history being made, babies being born, heroes being buried. I have revisited wonderful articles by past contributors: Mike and Paula Parker, Joan Brasher,  Joanne Brokaw, Cindy O’Halloran, Rick Campbell, as well as articles by Carl Mays, Al Menconi, Dave Ramsey and others.

I am taking way too long to do my part of the job, but at the risk of patting myself on the back, Christian Activities has provided some EXCELLENT content in the past. Due to the economy and a flagging interest in publications, I have let Christian Activities sit on the back burner for the past couple of years, adding a little new content each week, but it is my desire to once again have the kind of content that is making me take my time doing these edits -- because I am enjoying reading the articles so much!

Stay tuned as we revamp Christian Activities and launch it anew as a fresh website with familiar content, an updated look, and hopefully the kind of content that will cause my readers, like me, to enjoy reading about the events and people that define the Christian music and entertainment industries.

Screen shot of the last day of the past version of Christian Activities on the old server.


Sheryl Young said...

Cool blog!

Kathryn Darden said...

Thank you for visiting and for the nice comment about my blog, Sheryl.