Quotation Marks in Code

If you’re trying to figure out why your Wistia, Youtube, Vimeo embed code doesn’t work on your site… You might have pasted the code from a word processor into your WordPress page.

Some word processors automatically style straight quotation marks like these " (also the symbol for inches) to English typographic quotation marks like these “.

Here’s a visual:

The bottom quotes are the type you want to replace. You want the straight inches mark.

You should be able to replace the smart quotes (aka curly quotes) in the text tab of the WordPress page editor. This is a plain text editor that will not style your text.

Here is simple online find/replace tool that won’t have any automatic styling that some word processors do. Just type the quote mark from the keyboard to replace the Smart Quote. Then copy and paste into the HTML of your page.

You can also use the TextEdit app if you have a Mac. Make sure you are in the plain text format by going to Preferences. Rich Text Format will turn the keyboard straight quote into smart quotes.

Here is a wonderful cheat sheet about quotation marks and other typographic elements and how to achieve them with your keyboard:

Posted in Tools

Handy Online Tools & Tricks

An evolving list of online tools that I find useful in my workflow.

15 Functions in Google Sheet you need to know

Need to change ALL UPPER CASE to Title Case?

Need to remove line breaks in text you’ve copied?

Need to paste copied content from Word or Google Docs into WordPress as plain text?

  • Command + shift + v
  • It’s cleaner to style your text/posts in WordPress so that you don’t copy over HTML with embedded styles from Word or Google Docs etc.
  • This way you won’t have unexpected styles showing up
  • Your text will have the same styles as your website

Want to make your web images smaller for better performance?

Smush – Lazy Load Images, Optimize & Compress Images

Need to generate some placeholder text?

Need to convert units or do a calculation?

  • Use Google or Spotlight Search on a Mac
  • For example, type: “36 in to cm”
  • Or ask Siri (iPhone)

Here are some super handy things Siri can assist you with:

Need to translate something?

Need to share a screenshot, but don’t want to clog up everyone’s inbox with attached images?

Sick of email links ( opening in the Mail app on your Mac and want them to open in Gmail instead?

What are some of your favorite tools or online generators or productivity tricks?

I Love Rainbows!


I was pleasantly surprised when I did a git push of a recent commit to Bitbucket, and saw the Atlassian logo printed to the console in rainbow colors! Super cute!

Ok, now back to work….just wanted to share. It’s been awhile. I’m not great at the whole blog thing – but I’m OK with that…. A few posts now-and-then is cool with me.

I spend a lot of time in front of the computer so I like to get out in nature with my baby girl (Emma, my fawn pug — My black pug, Sammy, passed away in April… we’re adjusting to the new reality. It’s been very sad… We miss her…).

I also like to spend time drawing/sketching/doodling on paper. Gotta balance it out. Too much time in computer/server/phone world is … too much time. 😉

The outside world is quietly calling… go observe the little details of the world on a nice leisurely walk. Feels good to get away from the glowing screeeeens! Go 🌿

=^..^= (our kitty Istie-boy also passed away last August… we miss him too….)

Posted in Wordpress Dev

Vagrant/VVV: Upgrading Mysql to 5.6


WordPress requirements state:

To run WordPress we recommend your host supports:

  • PHP version 5.6 or greater
  • MySQL version 5.6 or greater OR MariaDB version 10.0 or greater

If you’re using Vagrant and VVV as your WordPress development workflow, here’s how I upgraded mysql from 5.5 to version to 5.6. If you want more info about how to use and setup this workflow checkout these tutorials.

I came across lots of articles and discussions about upgrading mysql when using a Vagrant/VVV setup, but my main question was “do I upgrade from within the virtual box or from my computer?”  None of the articles I found answered that question. So in case it’s not obvious to you either–here’s how you do it. I’m outlining these steps as if you’re also on a Mac:

Install 5.6 in the Virtual Box:

  1. From a Terminal window, change directory (cd) to your vvv folder:
    cd ~/vvv
  2. SSH into the virtual server:
    vagrant ssh
  3. Now issue the commands from this script (copy and paste the commands into the prompt and press enter):
    # Backup of all databases... JUST IN CASE
    mysqldump --all-databases --single-transaction --events --user=root --password > ~/all_database_backup.sql

    # Remove MySQL 5.5
    sudo apt-get remove mysql-server
    sudo apt-get autoremove

    # Install MySQL 5.6
    sudo apt-get install mysql-client-5.6 mysql-client-core-5.6
    sudo apt-get install mysql-server-5.6
  4. Check to see which version of Mysql is now installed:
    mysql -V
  5. You should see that you have version 5.6. Wee!
  6. Keep your ssh connection open if needed, or you can now exit


Update Your File from Your Mac:

  1. From a new Terminal window, change directory to your vvv folder
    cd ~/vvv
    – or if you exited your ssh connection, you should already be there. Print working directory to check your path pwd
  2. List the contents of the vvv directory ls
  3. Change directory to provision
    cd provision
  4. Edit the script file you find inside:
  5. Use your arrow keys to move down to the line that says mysql-server
  6. Press i to get into — INSERT — mode
    1. Use your arrow keys to get to the end of mysql-server
    2. and type -5.6 so it now says mysql-server-5.6
    3. Press the esc key to get out of — INSERT — mode.
    4. Type :wq to get into the vim command mode (:) and to write (save) the file and quit vim
  7. Now you need to run the provision script: vagrant provision or if vagrant isn’t running vagrant up --provision
  8. In the verbose log that’s printed to your Terminal window you should see

    ==> default:  * mysql-server-5.6


That should do the trick!

And here’s a beginner’s guide to bash scripting that I found handy, and where I learned that chmod stands for change mode. 😀

p.s. I’m using Local by Flywheel these days instead of VVV for WordPress local dev. It’s nice to have a GUI and it’s speedy to create a new site! And since it uses Docker, you can enable live links to share your local progress with clients and teammates. Pretty cool. =^..^=