Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – May 2022

These 11 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Have you heard of the Wordless Wednesday photography challenge? How participating can help your blog and photography website gain new followers.

How To Participate In The Wordless Wednesday Photography Challenge And Gain New Followers

  • They were about to be evicted. Would anyone come to their help?

Flash Fiction Friday – Evicted

  • Could you live without social media for 31 days?

Reblog Of The Month: Have You Ever Been Tempted To Switch Off Your Social Media?

  • What strange objects have you found in water?

Strange Objects Found In Water #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • How many old and outdated blog posts do you have live on your blog? They could be damaging your blog.

Throwback Thursday – Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

  • A mother will do anything to save her children, won’t she?

Flash Fiction Friday – A Matter Of Life

  • Be careful. You’re always being watched, even when having breakfast.

Did You Know That Something Is Watching You? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Have you heard of Throwback Thursday? It’s the day you can bring old blog posts back to life. Read on for more details on how to participate.

How To Participate In Throwback Thursday And Help Your Old Blog Posts Get Noticed

  • What is the secret behind the name Buttercup?

Flash Fiction Friday – Buttercup

  • Look closer. You may see more than you think you see.

What Can You See In The Spring Meadow? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Tanya has a secret weapon to help her group. But what do they need help with?

Flash Fiction Friday – Now It’s Your Turn

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – April 2022

These 9 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Time is running out for Adam. Was he killed or murdered? Can you solve the mystery?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Last Of Adam

  • Sometimes, photos do not come out as expected.

Strange Photos #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Help me raise £250 for the British Red Cross Ukrainian Crisis Appeal by writing and publishing a challenging blog post.

Are You Up For the Unfollow A Blog Challenge? Help Me Raise £250 For The British Red Cross Ukrainian Crisis Appeal.

  • What do you see in the green shadows?

Shadows Of Green #WordlessWednesday #Photography #WordPrompt

  • Do the eyes of the waterfall see the truth? Miranda is about to find out.

Flash Fiction Friday – Eyes Of The Waterfall

  • Can you spot the missing hippo?

Have You Ever Seen A Hippopotamus In Your Coffee? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Is there a reason why Bill never published his book? His wife is about to find out the shocking truth.

Flash Fiction Friday – The Death And Life Of Bill

  • Are blogging communities a good or bad thing? Read my experiences about the advantages and disadvantages of the blogging community.

What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Being A Member Of A Blogging Community?

  • Karl is trapped. Can anyone help him escape his prison cell?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Prison Cell

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Monthly Round-Up – April 2022

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – March 2022

These 7 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Are you feeling fresh and fruity today?

Fresh And Fruity #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Are you farming your blog correctly? The blogging genie has the answer.

Are you farming your blog correctly? The blogging genie has the answer.

  • You may be surprised by what it was that gave my guest Stephen Havard the confidence to write and publish his first book. A very warm welcome to author and writer Stephen Havard.

How I Boosted My Confidence To Write And Publish My First Book – A True Story And Guest Post By Stephen Havard @StephenHavard

  • A brief, honest and to the point look at the world of blogging over the last eight years.

Blogging – Is It All That You Want It To Be?

  • Have you fallen into this blogging trap? I did. And this is how I got myself out of it.

Are You One Of The Victims Of This Time-Wasting Blogging Trap?

  • Shanaya Simmons was looking for a change in her life, but was ‘change’ ready for her?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Other Side Of Change

  • Have trouble getting visitors to your blog or to read and leave comments on your posts? Here are 7 methods I use that have resulted in thousands of readers reading my posts and leaving comments.

7 Methods You Can Use To Make Visitors Want To Read Your Blog Posts

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Are You One Of The Victims Of This Time-Wasting Blogging Trap?

Over the last eight years that I’ve been blogging, I’ve learned a lot about the blogging world, which I like to share and discuss. 

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Are you wasting time when blogging?

My recent post, ‘Blogging – Is It Everything You Want It To Be?‘ got lots of you talking. And I’m hoping this post will get you all talking again.

What Do You Not Like Talking About On Your Blog?

Many bloggers don’t particularly like talking about certain subjects, such as why they unfollow blogs or feel guilty about unfollowing a blog they’ve been following for years. 

Another subject that has occasionally come up in the comments sections of some of my posts is feeling obligated or obliged to continue following blogs. You usually have no interest in these blogs, but you return the favour because they read and comment on your posts.

There are many other subjects, but I’ll keep those for another day.

From the beginning 

When we first start blogging, most of us will follow many blogs simply because they followed us first. As time goes on, the number of blogs we follow grows, and before long, we find ourselves with a massive list of blog posts to read. 

When I first started blogging, following all the blogs that followed me was something I did. If another blogger left a comment on any of my posts, I’d heard it was common courtesy to read and comment on one of their posts. It was a big mistake!

As time went on, I soon felt guilty if I didn’t read and comment on all the blog posts of all the blogs that followed me. 

Although I was publishing much less, some of the blogs I followed published up to five posts a day. It wasn’t long before the reasons why I started to blog soon began to disappear.

The time-wasting blogging trap 

Some days I found myself reading and commenting all day long, with little time left to write any blog posts. Blogging soon lost its sparkle, became a chore, and made me feel guilty and stressed.

I soon realised that I was reading and commenting on blog posts I didn’t particularly find interesting. Why was I doing this? Was it because those bloggers always read and commented on my blog posts? 

The honest answer to the last question is ‘Yes.’ Because they were reading and leaving comments on my blog posts, I felt obligated and obliged to read and comment on their blog posts even if I didn’t find their posts interesting.

Do you feel guilty if you unfollow a blog? 

I then started worrying that the owners of blogs I unfollowed would get upset with me for unfollowing their blogs. But I needn’t have worried about that. I found out that WordPress does not give bloggers a list of those who have unfollowed their blogs. 

The only way somebody may know I have unfollowed their blog would be the sudden lack of hard to write comments I was leaving. 

I then realised how much time I’d be saving myself by unfollowing all the blogs I often felt obligated to read and comment on because they had followed my blog first or were reading and commenting on my posts. 

It wasn’t long before I cut the number of blogs I was following from just over 500 to 130! However, some of the decreases were down to unfollowing blogs that had remained dormant for over six months. There were lots of those too. And I also unfollowed some blogs for different reasons.

Are you one of these bloggers?  

I occasionally hear from bloggers who tell me they feel obligated to continue reading and commenting on blogs they don’t find interesting simply because those bloggers read and leave comments on their posts.

I’d feel so guilty unfollowing them,’ are the words I hear often.

It’s a situation that shouldn’t happen to anyone in the blogging world.

When I cut down on the number of blogs I followed, it wasn’t long before some of those I had unfollowed stopped leaving comments on my posts. They must have been in the same position as I had been, or had it simply been a tit-for-tat situation? In any case, I wasn’t going to allow it to make me feel guilty.

What did matter to me was that I had finally admitted how silly I had been by continuing to waste my time reading and commenting on blogs I had no interest in reading. 

What also mattered was that I had freed up much more time to write, read, and comment on the blogs that publish content I am interested in reading. 

Goodbye guilt and stress – Hello Fun and enjoyment

The overwhelming guilt and stress feelings I’d been experiencing soon disappeared, and the fun and enjoyment I got from blogging were back.

Don’t fall into the trap of following, reading and commenting on blogs that publish content you’re not interested in reading. And never feel obliged to read and comment on someone’s post because they’ve just left a comment on one of your posts. Only leave a comment if you’ve genuinely enjoyed reading a post. 

You’ll be surprised by just how many bloggers can spot ungenuine comments.

And finally

There are no rules in the blogging world that you have to read and leave a comment on every blog post a blogger you’re following publishes. Never feel guilty for missing their posts or not leaving a comment on every post they publish. Nobody cares if you miss some of their posts. If they do, then perhaps it’s time to ask yourself why you’re following them.

Do you feel under pressure to read and comment on blogs that you are not interested in reading or on the blogs of bloggers that read and leave comments on all your posts? Do you feel guilty if you don’t read and comment on all the blog posts of certain bloggers? If so, why? 

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Blogging – Is It All That You Want It To Be?

In February 2022, I passed a blogging milestone. WordPress informed me that I’d been blogging for eight years! But that notification had me asking questions while I looked back at those eight years.

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Eight years? It doesn’t seem that long ago that I started to blog. I know of bloggers who have been blogging for much longer than me and who continue to write and publish posts full of interesting content that are always of the highest quality. Not only do they care deeply about what they write, but what they publish. That makes all the difference – knowing what to publish and what not to publish.

In those eight years, I’ve seen thousands of bloggers come and go. Some disappeared without a trace, while others hung up their blogging gloves and announced their departure. The ones I felt the sorriest for were the ones who stopped blogging because they couldn’t get the engagement or the number of hits and followers they craved.

Some came here with the sole purpose of making money, while others came here more for collecting numbers rather than engaging outside of their blog. More often than not, they don’t last long and end up cluttering up the worldwide web with abandoned blogs that end up in the blog graveyard. It’s a sad sight.

From the beginning

I can count the number of bloggers on one hand who have been with me since that first year. I often ask myself why they’re still reading my posts and leaving comments, but that lack of confidence in myself isn’t something I will dwell on here. All I will say is that I must be doing something right.

Unfollowing blogs

I’ll be honest and tell you that I have unfollowed many blogs over the years. Why do some bloggers not like talking about unfollowing blogs? It’s as if it’s a taboo subject.

Unfollowing blogs is something I witness many shy away from speaking or writing about. It’s as if it’s a ‘hush-hush’ subject. Something that gets swept under the carpet. But not me, no. I’ve written about it and had great discussions about it in the comments section of those posts, but never on other blogs. Perhaps I’m looking in the wrong places?

Why do I unfollow blogs?

For many reasons, but mainly when I lose interest in the content.

One of the biggest mysteries is the bloggers who I stop hearing from because I unfollowed them. I probably stopped following them because I was no longer interested in the content they were publishing. That’s a simple enough reason. But why then go silent? Surely not for the same reason? Or was it a coincidence that we lost interest in each other’s content at the same time?

The different faces of bloggers

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting some bloggers face to face. For me, that’s been one of the highs of blogging. However, I know that some bloggers like to remain anonymous. And they’ve every right to remain anonymous. Being behind a screen can feel like a safe place, but it isn’t always that way. I won’t talk about the trolls here because trolls like being discussed.

Ups and downs

I’ve had my ups, and I had my downs with blogging. It’s like being on a rollercoaster that some bloggers can’t get off. I’ve managed to alight the blogging rollercoaster a few times when taking blogging breaks.

Some of those breaks lasted months, while others lasted a few weeks. But they all had something in common. They helped me step back, take a look at what I was doing, how I was doing it, and most importantly, helped me change the way I blogged. I always came back refreshed and, best of all, despite what some say, readers do not stop following you because you’ve taken a break.

Barbara, who blogs at Book Club Mom, has evidence of blogging breaks. She recently wrote a terrific post about taking a blogging break. Read it here.

Like everything else in life, blogging changes. It would be a very dull place if it didn’t change. Can you imagine what life would be like if it never changed?

Changes

Since I first started blogging, things have changed massively. I’m talking here about the WordPress platform. I was never a fan of change, but I’m confident that the changes I’ve witnessed here on WordPress have made blogging much more fun and enjoyable. Blogging has finally moved into the 21st-century.

Those changes helped propel my blog to an even wider audience. Unfortunately, some bloggers got left behind, but I didn’t want to be one of them. There’s too much at stake when remaining stagnant.

At first, the changes looked like they were going to cause problems, but rather than complain about what I believed were problems, I adjusted to the changes and saw vast improvements for me, other bloggers and readers. It’s like climbing a ladder. The higher you get, the more you see and learn, and the more you can make a difference.

When I look at some of the blogs I’ve been following for years, I’m amazed by the changes that have taken place. That shows me how far they have all come on their blogging journey. They’ve adapted, welcomed change, become better writers and bloggers. But they have also updated and improved their blogs. It’s made them blogging figureheads with their readers and in the world of blogging. They have my utmost respect.

They continue to adapt to changes and continue to roar on their journey. That roar is one of achievement rather than the cry of complaint while refusing to adapt to change.

Change can make some problems frustrating, but you become stale by taking no action or hoping that others will tackle issues for you. Don’t allow your sparkle to dim by not adapting to change.

The biggest blogging trap to look out for

The majority of the people I have encountered in the blogging world are friendly. However, some don’t help themselves. By this, I mean that some bloggers seem to believe they have to be everywhere all the time to not upset anyone. It’s one of the biggest blogging traps bloggers fall into that can turn blogging upside down, inside-out, and become something that causes stress or a feeling of guilt. It’s a horrible place, yet it is easy to escape – if you allow it.

Many bloggers fall into the guilt and stress trap during their first few years of blogging. I was one of them, yet some don’t seem to learn the lessons of falling into that trap and continue slipping through the net, making blogging a not so lovely experience.

Some bloggers apologise for dealing with life outside of the blogging world. I don’t know why they believe they need to apologise, but it’s sad to see. Some apologise if they publish a post a few minutes late. It’s as if their readers’ lives depend on those posts going out on time; otherwise, something awful will happen.

Of course, the truth is that nobody cares if a post is published a few minutes late. Nobody cares if a post is a day late. But if it goes over a week late or your absence is out of character, care becomes a concern. It’s another lovely element of the blogging community – looking out for each other.

It’s my life

Something I’ve never been comfortable with doing on my blog is revealing everything going on in my life. Why? Because there are so many scammers out there looking for information they can use when they steal your identity. Plus, do people really want to know every detail of my life? Would I give that information out to total strangers?

Those are tough questions, but I decided to only give out a limited amount of information, most of which can be found on my ‘Meet Hugh‘ page.

Some bloggers pour their hearts out on their blog, telling readers every bit of detail of their lives. Years ago, life was different, and many of us wanted to keep our lives private, but now it seems to have been turned on its head, and people complain if nobody reads their blog. I couldn’t help but laugh when I saw this tweet.

Be careful when giving information out about yourself. You don’t know everyone who reads your blog and the information you are giving out on it.

That’s my quick look at the last eight years. There will be more posts like this because I’ve lots more to share.

How long have you been blogging? Is blogging all that you want it to be? Let me know in the comment section.

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – February 2022

These 8 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Look up and reach for the stars. They’re waiting to make your dreams come true.

Reaching For The Stars #WordlessWednesday #photography

  • Who are the men in the old photo, and what happened to them?

Flash Fiction Friday – Bar 49

  • Although worlds-apart, hiders and seekers in the gay world of the late 1970s found themselves on the same journey.

True Stories: Gay Memories – Hiding And Seeking #LGBTQI #LGBT

  • As first night nerves turn to anxiety, Arnold has a lot more to be anxious about.

Flash Fiction Friday – First Night Nerves

  • Does an orange sky in the morning mean the same as a red sky in the morning?

Sunrise Over Swansea Bay #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • A free dress for the Christmas party was all she wanted and didn’t seem a bad idea.

Flash Fiction Friday – Don’t Do This With New Clothes

  • What comes round goes around, doesn’t it?

Flash Fiction Friday – Have We Been Here Before?

These 13 free blogging tips worked for me. Join me and add your blogging tips to the list.

13 Free Quick And Easy Blogging Tips For Every Blogger

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – January 2022

These 10 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

10 Blog Posts You May Have Missed In 2021 That Got People Talking

  • This technology trick using an Apple Watch is something you’ll be delighted to know.

How To Unlock Your Mac Using Auto-Unlock With Your Apple Watch

  • Are you making the most out of the most used block on the Gutenberg Block Editor? You may be surprised at what you’re not making the most of.

How To Get The Best Out Of The Block You’re Using The Most On The Gutenberg Editor

  • Can you predict the future? This is why predicting the future isn’t as hard as you think it is.

This Is How Easy It Is To Predict The Future #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Have you ever been terrified to do something or go somewhere for the first time?

True Stories: Gay Memories – Going To A Gay Bar For The First Time #LGBTQI #LGBT

  • What are weathering whites?

Weathering Whites #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Did you know that keeping old, out-of-date blog posts on your blog can damage the health of your blog? Here’s what to do to help stop the damage from happening.

Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

  • If you don’t have an ‘About me’ page on your blog or are struggling with what to put on it, help is at hand. Blogger, James M. Lane has all the answers for creating an outstanding ‘About Me’ page for your blog. Click the link in this post for all the details.

Reblog Of The Month: How To Create An Outstanding ‘About Me’ Page For Your Blog

  • Miriam has other deadly plans for her 80th birthday to what her daughter has planned, but what are they?

Flash Fiction Friday – Make A Wish

  • Do you use the reblog feature on WordPress? Are you downloading images from the web and using them in your blog posts? Are you sure what you’ve downloaded or shared is actually free to use on your blog? Author, writer and blogger Deborah Jay shares her experience of facing a fine for reblogging a blog post that contained an image that was copyright protected.

Why I Was Threatened With Legal Action After Reblogging On WordPress – A True Story And Guest Post by Deborah Jay @DeborahJay2

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – December 2021

  • Have you seen the Littlest Christmas Goat? It may look festive, but beware its legend.

Have You Seen The Christmas Goat?

  • Do you have any questions or queries about blogging? Ask me your questions and get featured on my blog.

Looking For Help With Blogging? Do You Have Any Questions About Blogging?

  • Would Christmas ever be the same again? Last Christmas – A very short Christmas story.

Last Christmas

  • Can you have as much fun as me? Answer: Show me by sharing your Christmas jumpers with me.

How Much Fun Can You Have In A Christmas Jumper? #WordlessWednesday #photography

  • What are your blogging plans for the Christmas and New Year holidays? A full update of what’s happening on Hugh’s Views And News.

Christmas And New Year 2021/22 – What Can You Expect On Hugh’s Views And News?

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – November 2021

  • Why has rage and anger engulfed Richard? Is he to blame for his actions?

Candy-Coloured Rage

  • This useful feature on WordPress will help you save time when drafting blog posts. Read on for more details.

Don’t Have Enough Time To Draft Blog Posts? This WordPress Feature Helps

  • Why does a visit to a film festival bring sad memories and tears to Richard?

Theatre Of Memories

  • After witnessing the summer solstice and coming out to each other, Richard and Adrian face an important decision.

Where To From Here?

  • Are you a new blogger or new to blogging? Are you making any of these mistakes when leaving comments?

New To Blogging? These Free Tips On Leaving Comments Will Help Bring New Visitors To Your Blog

  • Which of your blog posts have been the most successful this year? You may be surprised by the results after reading my post.

How Do You Measure The Success Of Your Blog Posts?

  • Sometimes, flights are cancelled for good reasons. But it does depend on who or what is taking-off.

Ready For Take-off?

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – October 2021

  • These 7 free methods of promoting your blog will get people reading your posts and leaving you comments.

Are You Struggling To Get People To Your Blog? These 7 Free Methods Will Help

  • This year’s trip to Brighton beach would very different for Adrian. But were the answers to the rest of his life without Richard in front of him?

A Matter Of Life And Death

  • Does a game of Sardines hold secrets Richard doesn’t want his husband to know anything about?

Sardines

  • Wanted: Detectives and readers to help solve a mystery many have already tried to solve. Read the post for more details.

Can You Solve The Mystery Of A Blackmailed Missing Husband And Father?

  • This is the reason why you should think twice before responding to calls for help coming from behind certain doors.

Thursday Doors – The October Door

  • Are you following too many blogs? 7 common mistakes to look out for before following a blog.

7 Common Mistakes To Avoid When Deciding Whether To Follow A Blog

  • Now there’s an easy way to add PDF files to your blog posts on WordPress. Blogging expert Natalie Ducey shows us how.

Reblog: How To Upload A PDF File In WordPress For Viewing And Easy Downloading

  • What’s buried in the thick mud?

Buried

  • Are you making use of pinned tweets to help drive traffic to your blog?

Pinned Tweets: Why Every Blogger Should Have OneTo Help Drive Traffic To Their Blog

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – September 2021

  • Are you a blogger? If so, join me in answering a few questions I have for you about your blog.

Questions About Blogging: How Many Is Too Many Or Too Few Blog Posts?

  • Would you accept an invitation to another time and another place?

Thursday Doors: Door To Another Time, Another Place

  • If you’re an author of a published book, this is how creating a reusable block for your book will put it in front of hundreds of new visitors to your blog.

How To Create And Use A Reusable Block For Your Book On WordPress

  • Have you ever found yourself going back to somewhere you never visited?

Thursday Doors – Going Back

  • How this little known about block will help get visitors to the parts of your blog that are craving visits.

Are You Using This Little Known About Block That Helps Promote Your Blog?

  • Why does Richard’s memory of a big, black horse take him in the wrong direction?

Blizzards Of The Mind

  • What’s your favourite season or favourite time of the year?

Autumn Equinox #WordlessWednesday #photography

  • Will Adrian’s birthday gift to Richard spark new ideas or give reasons to be concerned?

Seat Of Horror

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Monthly Round-Up September 2021

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – August 2021

  • The residents’ of Annabelle’s hometown were not as safe as they thought they were.

When Death Comes Quickly #flashfiction

  • When was the last time you took a closer look at what’s in your garden?

It’s A Small World #WordlessWednesday

  • This new feature on WordPress is something you may have missed and will want to use.

New: WordPress Screen Options Button – Where, Why And How To Use It

  • What if what was on the other side of the open door wasn’t what he was expecting?

What If? #flashfiction

  • This is how I dismissed those that told me (and still do) that I can’t read or write because I’m dyslexic.

New At The Carrot Ranch: What To Do When You’re Told That Reading And Writing Are Not Your Friends

  • Would you enter The Tower Of The Ecliptic?

Thursday Doors: The Tower Of The Ecliptic

  • Have you ever considered turning off comments on your blog? Join the conversation with hundreds of other bloggers who have already had their say.

Flashback Friday: Why Are Some Bloggers Killing Off Comments Being Left On Their Blogs?

  • This block is something every blogger should insert on every blog post they publish. Why? Read on for more details.

Is This New WordPress Block The Best Way To Help Promote Your Blog For Free?

  • The Collector has an important message for the people of the planet Earth. Will they listen?

The Collector

  • What do you think is on the other-side of the ‘Open, Sesame!’ door?

Thursday Doors – Open, Sesame!

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Monthly Round-Up August 2021

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