Introducing my new blog design

grapefruit page 2

If you’re reading this, you may notice that things look a little different around here. Over the past year, I taught myself WordPress and all sorts of other computer code-type things, and ended up with a shiny new blog. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m pleased with how it turned out and I think you’ll like it, too.

So, what’s changed? Now, not only is the design cleaner but it’s also more functional. For instance, the recipes can now be searched by both category and tag. So, for instance, if you’re looking for Tex-Mex, cookie, or West Texas recipes, if you enter that as a search term a bunch of posts will pop up on the screen, all nicely laid out with pictures. There’s also a menu at the top of the page that has some of the more general categories, such as main dish and dessert.

With this improved taxonomy, I can also now do custom section layouts featuring certain recipes, such as the ones I have on the front page at the moment for soups and Tex-Mex. When I showed the new home page to my grandma, she thought it looked attractive but wondered if creating those new sections would be more work. By using WordPress, it’s not more work and in fact, it’s been a blast plugging in various terms and seeing what the blog shows me. There are so many posts I’d completely about and I am now a firm believer in the power of taxonomy.

Other improvements? Well, the blog is now mobile friendly and should load swiftly on your phones and tablets. For those who like to share on social networks such Pinterest and Facebook, there are share buttons after each post to facilitate that process. There are also new design elements that I look forward to messing around with, such as large photos, columns, pull quotes, and drop caps.

The main request, however, that readers have made over the years is to make each recipe printable. While I’d been working on coding my posts, there were plenty of old ones that hadn’t been converted. That’s now a thing of the past and I am pleased to say that every single recipe can be easily printed. So please, feel free to print away!

Of course, there are still things that need tinkering, so if features are missing that you’d like to see (for instance, I had removed the old text-only recipe index, but a reader told me that he preferred it so I brought it back), or any issues with pages not loading, looking odd, or anything else, please let me know.

In any case, while a blog is always an evolving entity, I am over the moon with the results so far. It’s always a joy to share recipes and stories with you, and I’m thrilled to have a more functional and attractive way to do this. I hope you enjoy the new design and thank you for reading!

  1. So glad to be able to print the recipes!! I just love your blog especially since we spent several years in the San Antonio area and loved the food.

    • Lisa Fain

      Toni–I am so happy to finally offer it on each post! Happy cooking!

  2. Looks great!!!

    • Lisa Fain

      JC–Thank you! It’s been fun learning all about WordPress.

      • James Sutherland

        Nice work indeed Lisa, well done! I used to teach this stuff at university, and I’m impressed – not sure my students would have called it “fun”, nice to see someone enjoying it. (“Write your own plugin” quickly leads to “why is my site a blank page now?”…)

  3. Sara, Ms. Adventures in Italy

    Yay!!! Welcome to WordPress <3

    • Lisa Fain

      Sara–Thank you! I’m having a lot of fun and now understand why so many love it.

  4. Hooray! It’s so lovely. ?

    • Lisa Fain

      Amber–Thank you so much for your inspiration and advice! Look forward to chatting with you again soon!

  5. SeattleDee

    High fives on the new look – and on the courage to make the change!

    • Lisa Fain

      SeattleDee–Thank you! I don’t know what took me so long but I’m glad that I finally did.

  6. Hooray! It is a testament to how great your blog is that I’ve been reading it for years even though it wasn’t mobile friendly but I’m so glad it is now. Also, recipe printing is great 🙂

    • Lisa Fain

      Annie–Thank you for reading all these years and I’m glad you weren’t deterred by the less-than ideal format.

  7. Anna C.

    Congratulations! What I like most is the typo-size, much more reader-friendly.

  8. John H.

    Hi Lisa! Great new look to the blog. Actually I’d read your writing even if you posted PDF photos of handwritten notes. As a homesick Texan myself, I love your stuff! Thanks and keep posting!

  9. Great looking intro–especially those screen shots! Hoorawww, I can print recipes!! Continue providing your followers with fun and tasty recipes. Miss my folks in San Antonio and Uvalde.

  10. Terry Hoey

    Nice Job!


    Love the new “easy-to-read” layout and all the improved features…especially the print feature. Thank you so much. I am looking forward to even more amazing recipes in 2018. I have a collection of cookbooks, but yours are my favorites and get used the most. Seriously girl, I think we should hang out. We would have a blast! Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

    • Lisa Fain

      Lexie–Thank you for the kind words! I’m super honored that my cookbooks are your favorites. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you, too!

  12. Good job! The pictures are ‘cleaner’ to me at least on my computer. No more cut and paste the recipes into the word processor!

    • Lisa Fain

      Carol–That’s one thing I noticed, too–everything seems much more crisp. Thank you for the kind words and happy cooking and printing!

  13. Celeste Lipp

    Congratulations! This is really wonderful. I know you’ve been working towards this for a long time. I will enjoy the new features!

  14. Tom Streeter

    Just beautiful work all the way around.

  15. sryoder

    I loved the old layout. It was nice and simple and I thought that you did a great job making the recipes printable. The earlier ones were easily printable by copying them and pasting them in a word processing document. I find all the ads (and there are a ton of them) on the new layout very distracting and they limit how much info I get to actually see on a screen before having to scroll down. Sorry to be the voice of negativity here since I absolutely love your recipes and your books but, for me, the new layout is not an improvement. -Steve

    • Lisa Fain

      Steve–I’m sorry you don’t like the changes. Thank you for the feedback and kind words about the recipes and books!

  16. Melanie Stolle

    Hi Lisa,
    I’m a huge fan of you !!!
    Born in Houston and moved to mckinney
    Five years ago. I love all things texas of course.
    ? Did you ever eat at Loma Linda?
    Used to be off of Griggs but now telephone rd.
    My family and I think they’re the best!!!!
    Melanie P. S. Love your cookbooks.
    And they make great gifts.

    • Lisa Fain

      Melanie–Next time I’m home I’m heading straight to Loma Linda! It looks like my kind of place. Thank you for the kind words about the cookbooks and I appreciate your sharing them with others!

  17. jwall915

    Love the redesign! Beautiful job, Lisa.


  18. Erica Lea | Buttered Side Up

    Love the updated design! Love that the images are bigger. 🙂 I recently made the move to WordPress as well, and I’m so glad I did. It’s so powerful!

    • Lisa Fain

      Erica Lea–Thank you! And isn’t it amazing? I love all that you can do with it.

  19. I can feel my inner Kermit the Frog exploding…

  20. PattiAnn

    Change is good. Easy on my 66 year old eyes. How about some of those quickie fast videos…so fun to watch.
    Thanks for your hard work.

    • Lisa Fain

      PattiAnn–Glad it’s easy on your eyes! And videos could be fun, too!

  21. Angie Lopez

    Hi, Lisa. I’d like to include your new book on my list of cookbooks to buy for Christmas in my column for next week, if we have time. I would also prepare one of the recipes to write about. Please let me know your thoughts.

    • Lisa Fain

      Hi Angie! That sounds fantastic. On my ABOUT page is my publicist’s email and she can send you anything you may need. Thank you for thinking of me!

      • Angie Lopez

        You’re welcome. We’ll email the publicist and see if we can get the info quickly; if not, I’ll do a story at a later time. Thank you.

  22. Rocky Mountain Woman

    Love the new design. So clean and easy to navigate!

  23. Please bring back the old index form where one could easily scan the recipe titles and click. Having to scroll thru the articles and pictures is time consuming and very inconvenient. For instance, if I wanted to look at your pinto beans recipes, it was very easy to find them under the old index system.

  24. My apologies, Lisa, I just discovered the recipe index at the bottom of categories! Found it right after sending my comment.

    • Lisa Fain

      Evelyn–So glad that you found it and your comment makes me think I should move it to the top. Thank you for the feedback!

  25. Nancy Walters

    Love it! Looks like I better start the switch from Blogger.

    • Lisa Fain

      Thank you, Nancy! The transition can take some time but it’s so worth it.

  26. Margaret

    I really like the look of your site and it’s easy and interesting to browse. I also like that the ads don’t dominate. I’ve noticed that some sites with videos and other moveable flashing parts can make it difficult to read. Is there a “home” button? Sometimes I’d like to go to your main home page after I’ve browsed for a bit, but haven’t found that yet.

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