How to read blogs

…and not go insane or forget about them forever in your browser bookmarks.

This post is not with my electronically-posted interests in mind, seriously. I’m breaking it down for those of you out there who find it tough to keep track of all the cool things going down on the interwebs, people like myself who are stressed and/or confused by blog reader technology.

My method involves Google and Firefox. Can you swing both of these fine technological ventures? There are approximately a gajillion other ways to read and remember blogs, so feel free to suggest your fave method in the comments section.

Step 1: Create/log-in to your Gmail email account. Free and (in case you missed the last 4 years of email innovation) probably the smartest inbox you’ll ever have. It recognizes and stacks replies to an email in a thread, and it color codes each appropriately. Love it!

Step 2: Click on ‘Reader’ up in the left-hand corner, usually hidden under the ‘More’ section. All you really need to do is click through to get started, so your Reader account is up and running. (Also free.) No additional passwords or anything, it just works through the Gmail account.

Step 3: Open your Firefox browser. And Google search “Feedly” or click here. It’s an add-on, which is like an app for your browser. Download it according to the directions on the site. (Totally free!)

Step 4: Add subscriptions directly to your Feedly page by clicking on ‘add source’ in the upper, right-hand corner of the page. You can add them by searching the web or by copying and pasting the link directly to the blog in question. You can also add subscriptions via your Google Reader page.

(note: the reason I like Feedly, as opposed to attempting to keep track of blog updates through Google Reader, has everything to do with presentation. With Reader, I feel like it’s yet another Inbox, an out of control one that sometimes has 1,000+ listed at the top—yes, I went a little Google Reader crazy since subscriptions seem so fluid—which then makes me continue to ignore all the cool things lurking behind that mysterious number…)

Step 5: Click on the little green spade that will now appear at the top of your browser window every time you have a few minutes of online time to spare to get a pretty and low-stress line up of all recent posts by your favorite bloggers.

Got it? Questions?

p.s. Here’s a shout out to Stacey and Fiona at NiftyLiving who showed me the way to Feedly!