Friday, 22 August 2014

7 things I've learned in 7 years of blogging

Seven years is a long time in the blogging world. Seven years is a long time in life. I love my blog, and the opportunities it has brought me, and the memories it has captured, and the people I've met. I started learning the ropes of blogging (rather than just making it up as I went along) way back in 2009, with Shimelle Laine's Blogging for Scrapbookers class. And I haven't stopped learning since. {or pinning, you can follow my pinterest board about blogging here} Here are my top 7 tips
  1. write in your voice. It sounds cliche, because everyone says it, but they say it because it is the truth. Once I started writing as I spoke, without the LOLs, my words flowed, I wasn't trying to be something on paper that I wasn't. That doesn't mean that if you use the occassional LOL that I'll stop reading, or swithc off if you use emoticons, but if it doesn't come naturally from you, don't try to force it, people will notice.
  2. make your photos big. I read on my iPad a lot, and regularly use the multi-gesture to make images bigger. My eyes are getting old, and I want to see your beautiful photos, don't make them so small that I have to enlarge them just to see the detail.
  3. don't explain absences. People read blogs via email or facebook or RSS reader. Unless they're a long-time reader that you've become friends with, they won't really notice if it's been five minutes or five months since your last post.
  4. it's ok to change paths. Just because you started blogging about your babies, doesn't mean you have to keep blogging about your babies. They grow up, after all, and eventually tell you to stop sharing their photos on facebook/instagram/blog. And passions change, too.
  5. never stop learning. The internet and social media are ever-changing beasts. You don't need to keep up with everyone else, but keep learning from them, and apply that knowledge when you feel you can.
  6. photos + words matter. Even when the days feel long, and babies are grown up, and you think you're talking to yourself, your stories matter.
  7. I know more than I thought I did. I've mentioned this before, and I'm sure I'll mention it again. I'm often so surprised when someone asks a question about blogging, and I know the answer. Being able to share my knowledge with others makes me so happy.
What has blogging taught you? How long have you been blogging for?

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

time to trust our husbands

As I read yet another post this morning from a mum getting ready to head off to the ProBlogger Event next week, it occured to me that many of us don't trust our husbands.

Oh, I don't mean that we think he's going to step out on us, I mean we don't trust him with the kids.

We stress ourselves out, writing out recipes, shopping, pre-cooking meals, organising play dates and school runs. Why?

Sure, he doesn't know the after-school-homework-chores routine. And he isn't the best cook in the world (or maybe that's just my husband), but why are we taking his autonomy away?

So the kids might eat frozen pizza for a day or two, or not get the after-school-chores finished. So what?

We have to let our husbands make the juggle, so they can feel good that they made it through the weekend without us.

Yep, we're at home with the kids, and if he can't get time off work we can help by organising after school pick ups, but the kids won't die if they wear the same clothes 3 days in a row (in fact, they might think it's pretty cool to have a special secret from their time with dad)

And if he has to drag them all out to the supermarket, he'll understand why we don't venture out very often.

But don't take away his ability to look after the kids by micromanaging. They're his kids too, and they'll jump all over you when you get home. Enjoy the conference.

Friday, 15 August 2014

5 ways to style a maxi skirt

I'm not a fashion blogger by any stretch of the imagination. My idea of dressing up these days is a new tshirt and let's not discuss how much angst was caused by the dress I wore to my sister's wedding!

So it was pretty random when I decided to by a maxi skirt before we headed away. I wore it (instead of scrunching it in a ball in the bottom of my bag), and I think I'm converted! I absolutely loved the feel of it! (And it's long enough that I didn't have to shave before wearing!)

But once we were home, I realised I didn't know what to wear with it. So I headed to Birds Nest for some inspiration.

Dark Rose
I love the pattern of this skirt, with small pops of colour.
Timeless Love Letter
This is totally my style (twenty years ago)
Red Bird
The skirt I bought is a black knit, so this simple, elegant styling is perfect.
Jingle Bells
A simple top with a bold colour skirt is perfect for entertaining on Christmas Day (only 132 sleeps!)
Flags and Stripes
 A  maxi dress isn't far removed from a maxi skirt, this styling looks nice and casual for summer days.

I have lots of ideas for my next shopping trip!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

us right now

he was busy chatting when I pressed the button

he enjoys his job, but struggles to get enough sleep

she forgot to take a photo of herself

she is remembering to take iron tablets, and noticing a difference

he didn't want his photo taken

he loved school camp, and scout camp, and district athletics, but now it's time to catch up on missed school work

she is a poser for the camera

she is starting to get tween attitude

he always has a goofy grin for the camera

he is excited to start school next year

she chases the camera when she sees it

she is walking everywhere, trying to run

Sunday, 10 August 2014

5 blogging resources I love

Over the years, I have purchased LOTS of blogging resources. And read HUNDREDS of posts about blogging (you can see almost 2000 of them on my pinterest board) But learning about blogging is still one of my favourite things to do.

In no particular order, here are 5 of my go-to resources
  1. 365 writing prompts for bloggers & creatives - the best $US5 I ever spent. Read my review here.
  2. * 31 days to Build a Better Blog - the first ProBlogger resource I purchased, and probably the best at breaking down all the ideas Click here to visit ProBlogger.
  3. * Do-It-Yourself Blog Critique - a step-by-step guide to asking the tough questions about your look and purpose and content, and a whole bunch of stuff.
  4. Blacksburg Belle - I'm a long-time fan of April and her blog
  5. by Regina - I discovered by Regina via her awesome pinterest images, and love everything I read
This is only a super-small list (and it's taken me hours [between teething cuddles] to put this list together), but I hope it's given you a place to start looking.

* this post contains affiliate links

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