Why I Switched to HostPapa and You Should Too!

For the past 10 years I had hosted my website with InMotionHosting.com. Their support team was always very nice and polite but no matter what they tried my site performance was always slower than I thought it should be. They insisted it was just because my website was graphics intensive and that if I really wanted faster performance I needed to switch to a dedicated server instead of a shared server, and that was MUCH more expensive. I asked my WordPress theme developer, ProPhoto, what to do. They suggested switching to HostPapa. I was on the fence because my site was HUGE. Like over 5 Gigabytes huge! They told me that they would switch everything over for free and that there would be no considerable lapse in time for my site being down during the transfer. I couldn’t believe it at first. But my site was getting to be so slow that no potential customer in their right mind would have waited for the images to all load. So finally I took the leap. AND I AM SOOOOOOO GLAD I DID!!!! Here’s why:

Honest Sales Team: HostPapa didn’t try to sell me on the most expensive package. They went over all my business needs and figured out what would be the best package for me at the best price. I ended up with their business hosting plan.

Terrific Tech Team: Tech support with HostPapa is GREAT. The most I ever have had to wait in a chat queue for technical support with HostPapa so far is about 1 minute. Usually there is no wait at all. That is HUGE! That is valuable time for me not to be waiting there staring at my screen hoping someone hops onto the chat box to help out. Once HostPapa’s technical support people are on with me they have been super knowledgable and have been able to address every question or problem I have had very quickly.

Easy Site Transfer: Transferring my old site over was way easier than I ever imagined. To transfer over my data from my old site all HostPapa needed was my cPanel username and password and they were on their way. A few days later everything was moved. All I had to do was redirect the name servers as per their easy to follow directions and voila!

Site Speed and Performance: Once my site was directed over to their servers instead of InMotionHosting’s, my site loaded lightening fast. I was astounded at the difference. I expected it to be faster… but I never expected it to be almost instantaneous for the load time. To my total joy that is exactly what I got.

Integration with ProPhoto: For those of you who use ProPhoto as your WordPress theme HostPapa works seamlessly with it. If you switch over and use their link on the ProPhoto site when buying hosting on HostPapa you’ll even get a $30 rebate from ProPhoto. If you are worried about the installation you can even choose one where ProPhoto is already installed for you by HostPapa! One of the things that makes the images be able to load so quickly is that HostPapa by default has ImageMagick (also known as Imagick) library preloaded for users. You don’t have to ask them to enable it. It is already there. This allows you to get sharper and much better quality resized images than you would if you used the much clunkier GD library that was standard with InMotionHosting and that so many other hosting companies offer.

So if you are considering creating a website or are thinking of switching to a new hosting provider I whole heartedly suggest you check out HostPapa. They are well priced and the quality and performance you receive from their shared hosting plans is phenomenal!

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    2020 Spring Semester Internship Available at Vail Fucci Photography

    Want to learn first hand what life as a working photographer is really like? Check out this internship!


    Unpaid internship available at Vail Fucci Photography in Newton, MA for Spring 2020 semester. The intern will get the chance to work directly with owner Vail Fucci and learn the ins and outs of a working free lance photographer. Responsibilities will include assisting on shoots such as product shoots, headshot shoots, newborn shoots, family shoots, and event shoots. Shoots take place both in the studio and on location. This includes setup and breakdown of studio lighting, styling product, and styling clients. Depending on the type of shoot the intern may take photos as well. The intern will also use Adobe Lightroom to help with culling photos, color correcting photos, cropping photos, and light touch up of photos. Additionally the intern will use Adobe Photoshop to do more advanced editing of headshots (skin smoothing, blemish removal, etc). Intern will learn the basics of accounting using quickbooks including invoicing and account balancing. Employing what they have learned during the semester the intern will help to shoot a gala in Newton with Vail Fucci on the evening of April 3rd. Availability on some weekdays is ideal as many shoots take place during the week, usually between the hours of 9AM-2PM.


    Candidates for the internship should have a genuine interest in photography and photo editing. Experience with OSX is required. Existing experience with Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe Lightroom is preferred but not required. Excellent customer service and people skills are necessary as the intern will be interacting directly with clients.  Once the intern has demonstrated competence with Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom, editing can be done remotely instead of on site.  Weekly half hour critiques of intern images or skills sessions are available. Vail will work with the intern to help him/her develop a strong portfolio of work.


    If you are interested in this internship, please contact me through the contact form on this website.  Applications must be submitted by January 13th.
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      A Bridesmaid’s Guide to the Modern Wedding Marathon

      Your bestie just got engaged! Hooray for her! You are so excited for her bachelorette party, her bridal shower, the rehearsal dinner, and the big day. What you are not so excited for is what attending all these events will do to your bank account. You are also worried about how you will support her during the planning process and on the big day. Take a deep breath and remember that weddings are meant to be fun celebrations of love! Here’s a little guide to help you through what has become the modern wedding marathon.

      Keeping Costs Contained
      It seems like weddings and all their related events have become more and more of a production. Each and every party needs to be photo-worthy. What used to be one last hurrah of your single life, bachelor and bachelorette parties have morphed into entire weeks or weekends, sometimes traveling to another city and renting a house for everyone to stay in. While all of this can be extremely fun, it can also become very costly. When planning trips suggest the group Air BnB it instead of staying at a hotel. It can be way more comfortable and you often save a ton of dough!

      Another way you could end up spending a lot of money is by having to buy a bunch of new outfits to wear for all of these more formal occasions. A brand like Ann Taylor has a range of sharp styles from dresses to slacks, perfect for such celebrations. Since it can be costly to get all the outfits you’d need for each wedding event, try your hand at online consignment shopping where you can find Ann Taylor clothing and so many other brands you love for less. Sport all your new looks at each wedding occasion and enjoy knowing how much money you saved! This can even be applied to bridesmaid dresses.  It is becoming more and more popular for bridesmaids not to have to wear the same dresses.  It adds some texture to your photos and makes it easier on the bridesmaids to get something they think is flattering on them, they can possibly get a dress they can use again, and it can be MUCH less expensive.  My sister actually did this at her own wedding.  She just had each bridesmaid send her a photo of the dress before they purchased it so that she could make sure it fit together with the wedding color pallet.

      One place that is great to find MAJOR bargains is ThredUp.  It even has a category just for bridesmaids dresses.  But don’t limit yourself there, check out the formal wear as well. And the great thing is it isn’t just great for your wallet, it’s great for the planet too.  Reusing fashion instead of throwing it away is better for the environment.

      How to Support the Bride
      Planning a wedding is STRESSFUL!  The day of the wedding is even MORE STRESSFUL!  As a bridesmaid you can really help keep the stress levels down.  During the planning stages you can be a sounding board for the bride.  If she is worried about all the details remind her that at the end of the day all that really matters is that the she and the person she loves with all her heart are now married!  Everything else is just icing on the wedding cake.  If she is worrying about expenditures show her all the amazing new ways you can save money on weddings these days.  For example you don’t need to go to custom stationary stores any more to get beautiful invitations.  Check out Basic Invite, their stuff is fantastic and affordable!

      For flowers suggest she have them make her bouquet the size of a bridesmaid bouquet instead of the GIANT sized ones that typically weigh you down.  It saves money and it is just so much more comfortable to carry around on your wedding day.  To make hers a little different than everyone else’s she can have a slightly different color scheme.  If your friend is overwhelmed with everything they are finding on Pinterest, remind them it is just there for inspiration, it doesn’t have to be imitation.

      On the day of the wedding here are some tips to keep in mind.  Don’t be surprised if your dear calm friend becomes a bit of a bridezilla that day. This type of behavior usually stems from stress. As soon as the festivities are over she will return to normal, so try not to take anything too personally that day.

      On the big day you want to be an asset, not a liability.  To help reduce her stress make sure you get to the bridal prep location early, not late.  Bring dress friendly snacks.  Avoid things like chocolate that can melt on your hands and get on the dress or Doritos that get that orange cheese dust on everything. Items with wrappers you can use to keep your hands clean while you eat them are ideal. Bring water and straws to drink it from so that she stays well hydrated and doesn’t ruin her lipstick. If it spills on anything it won’t stain things.  Offer to help her to the restroom.  Going  to the bathroom in a wedding dress is NOT an easy feat.  Bring a bridal first aid kit with you. Scissors, a sewing kit, safety pins, anti-perspirant, hair spray, bobby pins, tampons, bandaids, and double-sided sticky tape can be real life savers on the day of a wedding.  Get an extra copy of her room key so that when someone needs to take her veil or shoes back to her room during the reception the bride doesn’t have to go searching for the key.


      When it comes time to take photos do your best to politely help corral friends and family that need to be in the shots.  Listen to the photographer so that the bridal party formals don’t take up a huge amount of time.  This will give the couple more time to get shots of just the two of them or to help get them to the cocktail hour faster.  Another way to speed photo time up is to not take photos on your phone while the photographer is taking shots of the group.  People don’t know where to look, at you or the photographer, and then everything takes twice as long as necessary.  If you happen to notice the bride’s “Uncle Bob” encroaching on the photographer’s space and slowing things down, gently suggest to him that his talents would be better used taking photos of other people during the cocktail hour, etc since the photographer is tied up here.  During the actual ceremony and first dance remember to look at the couple and try to keep a nice smile on your face.  Nothing ruins a wedding album like a member of the bridal party in the background looking like they don’t want to be there. Lastly, try to party it up on the dance floor with your friend.  You may be totally tired, but it will mean the world to her.

      By keeping these points in mind hopefully your wallet won’t be quite as light and you will be super helpful to your dear friend who asked you to be her bridesmaid.



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