This Saturday I got a tag from a friend (Maria of Change-Diapers) who noticed when she searched something about the Flats Challenge that the all-powerful Google issued a warning that Dirty Diaper Laundry was hacked. I took notice but had a few things planned for the day. On Sunday I reached out to my host to rule out any security issues there (I was hoping it was their fault so I could wait for them to solve it TBH) but alas it was on my end.
The Google Search Console informed me that a hacker got in the back door to produce juicy posts with linked keywords to steal my hard-won SEO juice. Smart, but totally crummy and worst timing ever. Immediately I fired off an email to the person who has helped me in the past and she was, as always, quick to respond that she could help for her rate of $125. Not money I was hoping to spend seeing as how I recently had to break-up with my ad network Passionfruit Ads; they had become so impossible and frustrating to work with for me and my advertisers that I stopped renewing all custom ads to get rid of them. 3+ months without the largest % of my ad income has been tough, as you can imagine. Then a freaking tree fell in our yard, my son’s bike was stolen, and now my blog wants to fall apart. It’s been swell. But as any website owner will tell you, having malware or a hacked website is not something you want to ignore.
Sarah, the smart one, was able to remove the problem and spackle it over but emailed me to say that my old ass theme was basically going to let any hacker in who attempted to find me. If you recall I’ve mentioned my website struggles in the past due to the Cloth Diaper Finder. The handy database I designed and had built was worked into the framework of my blog. Fine 5 years ago, not cool as the years passed. Each time I tried to update my theme or make changes it broke the database, a costly fix. I had the database moved to its own home nearly a year ago with the intent on sprucing this old lady up but money and time were never there to follow through.
I whined to my friend Amanda and she said “just do it.” I had already picked a theme out and had planned on paying a professional to install it and polish with my supervision, making it what I wanted, behind the scenes and then making it go live. A perfect launch would happen and I’d be happy. Instead Amanda and I installed this theme ourselves and it went live with no logo, posts all over the place, and looking like a broken website. The pressure was on to turn it into an OK website before the readers woke up and saw it in disrepair. She has more skills so she did the heavy lifting to get it passable in the first 1.5 hours while I sobbed in the corner biting my nails. I pushed her to go to bed and then I plugged away trying to make sense of this new world. I haven’t had a modern theme in years, everything was so scary and confusing. It took me years to use a digital gas pump when I was a teen; I would drive all the way to my hometown from college and make sure I got gas there with the manual pump just to avoid using the scary fancy ones.
The clock is about to strike 6 am and I’ve pulled my first “all-nighter” in I can’t remember how long. You’ll notice everything is pretty different and it is likely to continue to change since this night of work was just to make it not suck. There are many cool features of this theme I can’t wait to explore, especially the ratings for reviews. I can now highlight areas and posts on this website that I want people to see when they come here to learn about cloth diapers. No one comes to my main URL to see my recent posts, they are usually here to research because they heard about my resources from a friend. I hope I can make this a better destination for everyone looking to find those juicy videos and posts that have made DDL a go-to resource.
Please be patient as things shift. It’s still a rocky road to put this 7 year old website back together. It’s carrying battle scars from past themes and edits.
The good news is that I will have an ad slot open at the TOP of this website, right next to the logo- 728×90 If you’re interested in this opening email firstname.lastname@example.org for information. Silver lining I guess…
Now it’s time to wake up the groggy kids and pick up their dad from the airport. We both had red-eyes tonight.