Cristian Mihai on Growing Your Blog and Building a Readership

This is important to me and I wanted to share it!

The Daily Post

Cristian Mihai

From the feedback we receive, we know that growth and traffic are important to you, and that you’re interested in ways to grow your blog and build your readership. Today, we’re excited to chat with Cristian Mihai, a twenty-two-year old writer based in Romania, who has built a large community around his popular blog at

Cristian writes primarily literary fiction and has published books like The Writer, which experiments with magical realism, and Jazz, a novel about ambition and deception. He launched his site in April 2012, and to date has 54,000 followers and counting. As you poke around on his blog, you’ll find short stories and essays in addition to posts, and get the sense of a prolific writer who is passionate about storytelling and curious about the human condition.

We’re glad to chat with him about his approach to blogging and promoting his…

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Just Putting It Out There…Frugalicious Frenzy

Okay friends and fellow bloggers….this is a yearly event that frugal people die for!  This coming weekend is the “NCJW/Cleveland’s 45th  Designer Dress Days Sale” which will begin on October 25, 2013.  It will be held at the The Mandel Jewish Community Center located at 26001 South Woodland Road Beachwood, OH 44122 !!!!!

For those frugal divas who love designer fashion but refuse to pay those ridiculous retail prices for it…can now get it at a fraction of a fraction of the cost!!!!  You can find designers from Burberry, St. john, Chanel, Carlisle, Escada, to Armani.  There are accessories, jewelry, furs and fur accessories (I don’t support the killing of animals to provide luxury coverings for our bodies…but honestly we have worn fur since Adam and Eve…I’m just sayin”!!)

You can find “new and gently worn upscale resale at phenomenal prices, a shopping experience different from all others“, states their ad in the MaxValues magazine.  In the current ad (which I received this week) there is a coupon!!!….$5 off a $50 purchase!!! (I provided a link to their website so you can get a coupon too 🙂

Now there is something a little different about this sale…the first day of the sale is October 25th….this is called the preview sale and costs $20 to attend! (which the coupon is not valid for).

However, the sale days, which run from October 27th-October 29th offers free admission.  But get this…..on October 28th,,,everything is 20% off….and even better, on October 29th..everything is 50% off!!

Now you can look at that two ways….is all the good stuff gone in the first day? or do you bear down and wait for the 50% off day and pick through what is leftover?  Choices, choices, choices!

The hours: October 25, 2013 from 10am-4pm, October 27, 2015 from 10am-5pm, and October 28 & 29, 2013 from 10am-8pm.

The proceeds from this sale support the National Council of Jewish Women/Cleveland Community Service Projects and Advocacy Initiatives. If you want more information go to their website, which I provided a link to above.

Happy  Frrrreeeee Hunting!


Stargazing Week Finale @ Carly’z Corner….

While on my spiritual trek this past  June, we stopped at a rest stop in Pennsylvania.  More specifically, the rest stop placed us in the town called Coudersport.

This was not just some random rest stop that we happened upon.  Oh no!  While being my normal inquisitive (aka nosy) self, I explored the area and saw this:  

Amazing….right! Cherry Springs State Park is nearly as remote and wild today as it was two centuries ago!  Named for the large stands of black cherry trees in the park, the 82-acre state park is surrounded by the 262,000-acre Susquehannock State Forest. The Susquehanna Trail passes nearby and offers 85 miles of backpacking and hiking.

However, as I continued to explore and read more about this town I learned that Cherry Springs is one of the best places on the eastern seaboard for stargazing due to its exceptionally dark skies.

Today the power of stargazing, an ancient activity, has been veiled by light pollution and lost in the luminosity of offices, traffic jams, and arenas. A hundred years ago, a perpetual orange haze did not obscure the Milky Way; light pollution did not exist then. Vincent Van Gogh’s 1889 masterpiece, Starry Night, depicts a sky few Americans have seen naturally—bright and mystical. Fortunately, today Van Gogh’s art-inspiring view is not extinct everywhere. At Cherry Springs State Park, anyone who leans back and looks up is sure to experience all the wonderment and awe that coincides with gazing at one of the last, true starry nights.

Since 2000, Astronomers and amateur star-gazers have flocked to remote Cherry Springs from around the country, just to stand and tilt their heads towards the cosmos. After visiting the park in 2007, New York Times writer Dave Caldwell wrote, “On a perfect night, particularly during a new moon, the Milky Way is so bright it casts shadows. Star-gazers hold out their hands and look at the shadows on the ground in awe.” While city and suburban star-gazers may only see thirty to a thousand stars speckled across the sky, visitors to Cherry Springs are treated to a brilliant splattering of about 10,000 stars. “You get kind of overwhelmed at how many stars are actually visible,” astronomer Stanley Nawrocki told Caldwell.’ (taken from article written By Erin L. Gavlock, Summer 2009)

Every year, Cherry Springs State Park hosts the “STAR PARTY”!  This event is sponsored by the Astronomical Society of Harrisburg. This is a pre-registered event. It is held on the Astronomy Field of the park and you must be registered to attend for all activities except the public viewing night. There will be no public programming by park staff during this event.

I found the Facebook page for Cherry Park Star Party 2013 and it has a host of information on it.  Much more than the website.  There are food vendors and other vendors on site all three days.  So purchasing meals on site is an option.  There are many raffle prizes and door prizes.  Not clear on all the activities but 2 out of the 3 days there are talks given on topics by NASA about Solar telescope viewing to “The Origin of Everything: How Things Got to Be the Way They Are Right Now”.

There is a fee to attend and registration is required. For a single student the cost is $30, single adult is $40, and a single family $55. Now as far as I understand these costs are for the entire 3 day event!  (Psst!…..if you are planning on attending the event with friends, I would recommend you get together and purchase the single family package.  Put it this way….$40 for 3 adults=$120 vs. $55 for a family of three.  I am not promoting dishonesty…but that day!…we will all be Millers!)

Reminder these are the prices for the last star party.  Keep checking their website or their Facebook page for up to date changes in pricing.

If you are interested in attending, I strongly recommend pre-registration as only 500 guests are accepted!

For more information and to register please go to the following website.

Although we missed the 2013 STAR PARTY…as it was held on  June 6-9.  We can prepare to attend the 2014 STAR PARTY which will be held June 26-June 29!!!!!

Cherry Springs State Park is located at:

  • 4639 Cherry Springs Rd, Coudersport, PA 16915
    Phone:(814) 435-5010

Cherry Springs Star Party – 2014!

Our 2013 Star Party was a great success and featured talented speakers and opportunities for observing. The Registration Desk will open at approximately 12 PM on Thursday and will be open at various times throughout the weekend. We hope to see YOU at the Star Party!

Happy  Frrreeeee Hunting!

Stargazing Week @ Carly’z Corner……Geauga Observatory Park

Zurcher story, See The Stars in Geauga County to be published Saturday, November 24, 2012 Chris Mentrek, Naturalist at the Geauga Parks New Observat.JPG

(Chris Mentrek, naturalist at the Geauga Parks New Observatory Park.)

The Geauga Parks New Observatory Park is an 1,100-acre park that’s tucked away in one of the darkest corners of Northeast Ohio.  

The new park boasts an observatory with a 25-inch telescope and a planetarium for those nights when clouds obscure the telescope’s vision.


Admission to the park and its activities is free. They are also seeking other uses for the parkland.  The park offers some other unusual ways to explore the solar system on foot. They are encouraging hiking on the trails and pointing out that the park includes the Cuyahoga River headwaters and some spectacular rock formations similar to Nelson Ledges.   There is a 1.8 mile trail that takes you through the planets that encircle our earth. The distance from earth to the planets is roughly scaled from millions of miles to a few feet. You can walk the trail to Neptune or Mercury in a matter of minutes instead of light years.

While we were at the park, we witnessed hobbyists firing model rockets that shot hundreds of feet into the sky. The slim rockets returned to earth under small parachutes.  “It’s just one more way that people can use and enjoy all the open land that we have in this park,” said Mentrek.

Chris Mentrek is a naturalist at Observatory Park, the brand-new Geauga Park District’s facility in Montville Township.  Observatory Park is located at 10610 Clay Street in Montville. Call (440) 286-9516 or visit

Mentrek said that on a clear night, you can see the majesty and width of the Milky Way out here. That’s something that you cannot see near downtown Cleveland or in most people’s backyard.”

“Eventually, within a couple of years, we will have two telescopes. The old Case Western Reserve Observatory is on our grounds and it is being rebuilt. When completed, it will have a telescope with three times more power than our present telescope.”

The first thing you see as you leave the parking lot is a 12-foot high sundial that, on sunny days, allows you to see the time.





(my girls playing on the sundial as we attended the park’s grand opening…which has some great kids activities, live music and free food)

At the Observatory, there is a weather station where you can see the speed of wind, the amount of rain and the barometric pressure. Next to that is a working seismograph that measures earthquake activity around the world. In fact, the day I was there, it registered a small earthquake that had just occurred in Alaska.

Unlike many county and Metroparks, Observatory Park is open into the late hours of the day. Hours year-round are 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.
“If we are having a program in the late hours, it can even go past midnight,” Mentrek said. “We try to stay open as long as necessary on nights that there are really cool things happening in the sky.”

So while Geauga Observatory Park is about a ~one tank trip~away, it is well worth the trek.  Pack the picnic basket and take the family or your sweetie on an adventure. You can picnic on open land or dine inside where it’s cozy and warm.

Whatever you prefer!

Happy Frrrreeeee Hunting!


Stargazing Week…..Day 1 @ Carly’z Corner

Many questions are asked about the heavenly jewels that glitter in the night sky.  These mysterious companions have fascinated people for thousands of years.  We desire to study them up and close, to learn why they exist and what is their purpose?  Many have yearned to learn their origin and who made them and how they came into existence?

Though many of us are not millionaires who can pay to take a flight to the red planet.   We can certainly take a closer look at  Mars and the constellations by way of our local planetariums.

This week on Carly’z Corner, will we post free or low-cost ways to enjoy stargazing and viewing other celestial displays, such as the ISON Comet. One such place where we are invited to explore stargazing, is the Walter R. Schuele Planetarium. It is located inside the Lake Erie Nature and Science Center, at 28728 Wolf Road, Bay Village, Ohio 44140.

Comet ISON on October 8, 2013 as seen through the Schulman 0.8 Telescope atop Mount Lemmon at the University of Arizona SkyCenter. Credit: Adam Block/UA SkyCenter.

“The Comet of the Century”
Date: Saturday November 23 Time/Duration: 7 – 8 p.m.
Telescope viewing 8:15 – 10:30 p.m.
For adults and families Fee: $5/person; $25/family of 5 or more (children under 3 are free) Telescope viewing is free!
Will comet ISON be the brightest comet seen in a long time?  We won’t know until it is near perihelion (its closest approach to the Sun).  One thing is for sure; it will not be as bright as the full moon!!  Join us for an evening of everything comets.  We will find out what a comet is and the history of Comet ISON.  Then we will make our own comets!!  At 8:00 pm, we will move to the field across from the Center to view Comet ISON (hopefully with our naked eyes), and with telescopes and binoculars.  If you have a pair of binoculars, please bring them.

This planetarium offers free telescope viewings ……

Telescope Viewing
Date: 1st and 3rd Saturdays, weather permitting Time/Duration: Immediately following the evening Monthly SkyQuest Program (approximately 8:45 p.m.)
All Ages Welcome Fee: Free
Join us in the field across from the Center for FREE telescope viewing following our evening Monthly SkyQuest program on the 1st and 3rd Saturdays of each month. (Weather permitting.)

So check out their website as they have many more great events throughout the fall and winter!

Oh! and check out the information below as the Lake Erie Nature & Science Center is free everyday of the week and they host thousands of events throughout the entire year!

Happy Frrrrreeeeee Hunting!!!!!!

Lake Erie Nature & Science Center provides free admission seven days a week and performs wildlife rehabilitation at no charge to the public. The Center offers quality nature, environmental and science experiences through school field trips, preschool, family, scouting and planetarium programs, nature hikes and a variety of wildlife exhibits, along with domestic and wildlife close encounters.