“Abandon Ship!” was just about what I felt like doing with this blog this morning.

Having come back from a long-weekend Zen retreat in a beautiful Elizabethan manor house in the English Lake District, I was feeling really rather chilled.

My intention was to have a look at some photographs that I’d taken during the “free” time over the weekend accompanied a few calm and thoughtful words……

………However in my short absence, gremlins had  invaded my website.  I first found out that the email subscription button hadn’t been working for a while.  This led me to discover that no back-ups had been done, Jetpack and VaultPress were struggling to connect, my theme seemed to be corrupted ….and so on…..

So, drastic action required!

I first stripped the website back to the bare bones, uninstalling all the bells and whistles it had accumulated over the years. Following advice on various forums, I changed from Moesia Theme to basic Twenty Sixteen to try to isolate problems. This kind of worked but I didn’t like the look of it.

Then I changed the theme to Zerif Lite. I’m not sure how this will respond on all devices; in fact I’m not sure of anything.

I feel great affinity with the Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

So by way of a test, I’m posting this picture of an abandoned boat I saw on my way to the Retreat Centre.

It looks how I feel after EIGHT HOURS on  MacBook trying to fight my way back into cyberspace:

Abandon Ship!ship wreck, Ulverstone, Foulness Island, rust, beach, coastal, Roa Island

Abandon Ship! ©HelenBushe


If any of my fellow bloggers out there spot any glaring human errors, or have any advice to offer on how to best customise this theme, I’d be very grateful if you would sling it my way.

I feel sufficiently OddBall myself right now.   I’m split between the Calm Mindfulness of the weekend and the Utter Frustration of trying to get this website up and running again,  so will link to Cee’s Challenge:



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Andrea · 4 August 2017 at 06:15

I feel for you – I found after pulling my hair out and feeling like a rusty boat – do the following: Deactivate WP Cache, security plugins, etc. Then like a magic wand WordPress and JetPack shake hands, make nice, and you do a happy dance. Andrea

    HMB · 4 August 2017 at 07:38

    Ah, thank you very much. Never heard of this before! Happy dancing

Cee Neuner · 14 April 2017 at 17:18

Oh I so adore this photo. Excellent.

    HMB · 14 April 2017 at 17:30

    Thanks Cee

paulfraser11 · 13 April 2017 at 22:22

That’s quite a story Helen and I’m sorry your return from the break was met withsuch an issue. Sadly I’m reading the troubles you are having with a fear I may encounter something like this myself, I have so many ‘Dummies’ books and the like to get me on line I would really struggle if anything went wrong. I’m of no use in offering you any help, but instead, I will say ‘what a fabulous picture you have posted’ and hope you get your issues sorted soon :))

    HMB · 13 April 2017 at 23:24

    Whilst I enjoy a challenge, I do like it to end on a positive note after spending so many hours. If it all works Ill feel like I’ve enjoyed it. If it doesn’t then I’ll keep going anyway. At least Ive changed the look of the website.
    Good job I had a weekend of Mindfulness and meditation to prepare me. !
    I’ll have time to visit fellow bloggers posts once I’ve sorted this.

Hugh's Views and News · 12 April 2017 at 10:35

I’ve never been tempted to go down the self-hosting route, Helen. I’ve read many posts given great reasons why self-hosting is the way to go, and then I’ve read some real horror stories. I’ve just changed my blog’s theme, but I’m not self-hosted. I think a change of theme is very refreshing once in a while. I’ve also got into the habit of checking all the links on my blog at least once a month to ensure they work. It can be very time consuming, but is well worth all the work.

    HMB · 12 April 2017 at 14:02

    I do enjoy working on my website….as long as eventually I can achieve what I’m after. But am now waiting for Jetpack support to get back to me as SUBSCRIBE BUTTON is sending out confirmation emails only to those would-be followers who have an iCloud email address.
    Ah well. What better thing to do on a rainy afternoon

elleturner4 · 12 April 2017 at 03:59

Makes your head hurt when things go wrong on website. Feel for you and know what you mean!

    HMB · 12 April 2017 at 07:22

    Thanks Liz. All sympathy gratefully received. I still can’t get the SUBSCRIBE By email button to actually send out promised confirmation emails. But what the heck! There is a world out there to photograph.

      elleturner4 · 12 April 2017 at 07:25

      Yes, sometimes best to turn it off and come back later. I’m not very good at that-need to sort it out which can lead to very cross and ratty times!

        HMB · 12 April 2017 at 07:25

Arkenaten · 11 April 2017 at 22:30

Looks all right from this end, Helen: I am really no good with IT stuff and I usually devolve into an ‘it’ when the midden hits the windmill, so advice I cannot offer.

    HMB · 11 April 2017 at 22:31

    Aye it’s all shit and fans here too.

      Arkenaten · 12 April 2017 at 08:22


      Is ever so, with IT, is it not?

Laurie Graves · 11 April 2017 at 19:59

Better head out and get chocolate, quick as you can! Best of luck getting back on track.

    HMB · 11 April 2017 at 20:01

    Thanks Laurie.
    Our village shop has lots of chocolate and it doesn’t close until 9.00pm. That’s in an hour. It’s only a couple of minutes walk away.

      Laurie Graves · 12 April 2017 at 14:04


whippetwisdom · 11 April 2017 at 19:53

I sympathise with you too Helen – I cannot give you any technical advice but I hope the zen stays with you and helps you put your blog together again Everything looks fine on my phone so far ☺

    HMB · 13 April 2017 at 14:33

    Thank you Xenia. Yes, my inner calm has lasted all week! Such a good way to be. And will be topping it up at regular meditation group tomorrow.
    Found your comment in spam – all by itself.

      whippetwisdom · 13 April 2017 at 15:03

      That sounds wonderful! I am glad your inner calm can get a regular top up and that you found my comment ☺ Enjoy your meditation group tomorrow and have a wonderful Easter xxx

        HMB · 13 April 2017 at 15:18

        Thanks Xenia. All the best to you all too. xx

lizmcqueensart · 11 April 2017 at 19:41

I sympathise with you. Computers can age us drastically. Love the boat!

    HMB · 11 April 2017 at 19:42

    Awww thank you. Sympathy is what I need right now. Especially as I’ve no chocolate

I'm always pleased to read comments.....

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