Mommy Bloggers are Crazy

For many years I had a blog for my shop. Boutique news, convention wrap-ups, costume stuff, etc. So I thought I knew what I was getting into with the new blog thing, but noooooo. Just like everything else that relates to parenting, I was wrong about the Mommy Blog.

crazy mom blogger

Mom blogging is a different world. There are networks, tribes, pods, loops… and you have to learn to navigate through them. It’s easy to get sucked into the networking thing and then next thing you know all you are doing is posting and liking and commenting in exchange for the same on your stuff.

And these people aren’t necessarily interested in what you are actually posting. They’re only interested in the reciprocal like or comment or share. It’s all a big numbers game where people want tons views and followers so they can be seen as an “influencer.” The more influence you appear to have, the more likely you are to get paid for things and get more free stuff.

I lasted about ten seconds on an Instagram follow loop. And most of the follows I earned from that have already unfollowed me anyway so it was a total waste of time. It seems like Twitter has a never ending supply of parent bloggers tweeting and retweeting every little thing. I’ve been pretty stingy with my blog follows, only following back the blogs that appear to have content I’m interested in reading on a regular basis.

I’ve been able to stay out of the mama drama for the most part. I participate in one Facebook group with a small group of blogging ladies that are pretty awesome. Our rules are relaxed and we haven’t had to do the dreaded Facebook ban on anyone.

I don’t plan on getting sucked into it since I don’t have the time to go leave fake likes and comments all day. And I prefer my readers to be real as well. So if you are reading this, liking and commenting, then thank you! I really enjoy reading the comments and knowing they aren’t just some reciprocal compulsion.

I still have a lot to learn in the business of mom blogging and blogging in general. My goal is to keep things fun and keep enjoying it and definitely Not get too obsessed with stats and shares and how many likes something gets. Of course I pay attention to that stuff! But really, it’s just exciting to be writing something people are actually reading. So again, thank you for being here!

thBFGA1IHA

I Don’t Read Your Blog, and Here’s Why

I’m just going to come right out and say a lot of “Mom Blogs” annoy me. They are so bogged down with ads and giant photos that I can’t even figure out where the article starts and ends, but I can figure out where to buy a Vitamix blender, save on auto insurance and get the latest bundle on Direct TV.

I know, I know…you’re just trying to make a little money, right? Utilize all that advertising space? But do you have to do it RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE of your damn blog post? It’s at the top, bottom, sidebars and sandwiched all up in there so much that I’m thinking maybe this is really just a GEICO ad that somehow got meshed with an informative piece on dealing with tantrums (observation based on an article that inspired this post, that pushed me over the edge and almost made me have a tantrum)

So here’s my Top 5 List of Reasons Why I Just Can’t Read Your Blog:

1 – Your photos are enormous, so they take forever to load and dominate the page. If you have a photography blog, great, that makes sense. But if you are trying to tell me a story and break up your text with HUGE photos, it’s just annoying. I post photos. Sometimes they are on the larger side, but I try not to have them dominate the text.

2 – You have large blocks of uninterrupted text. Writing for the Internet is different and massive paragraphs without line breaks make it hard to follow. You need to break it up and throw in a photo now and then. Just not a giant one.

3 – You have pop-ups. Does Anyone like these? No. My first instinct is to go around clicking all the little x’s to make them go away. I don’t even care what they say.

4 – Ads everywhere. Look, I understand we need to make a little extra money and even I have given WordPress Word Ads a try, but when they are at the top, at the bottom, in the freakin middle of your blog post…I can’t concentrate on the text at all.

5 – You don’t proofread. Spell check was invented for a reason, use it! And don’t stop there, read over everything and edit for grammar, punctuation, etc. We all make typos, but repeatedly doing so throughout the blog just makes it painful to read. And I know I’m not perfect, but I do make a considerable effort to proofread several times before ever pressing publish. (except that one time I published my rough draft and then wanted to scream and hide under a rock)

internet-marketing-jokes

Now I know what you are thinking…except for maybe #5, all these things are being done by popular blogs that actually make money. So maybe the trick to making money blogging is to cater to the advertiser and your google stats, and not the reader. And if that’s your thing, then you didn’t get into this for the love of writing and that’s OK. Since I started blogging I’ve learned there are ALL types of blogs from the personal diaries to product reviewers to business machines where you buy into a blog network and craft it to appeal to your local community. There’s short stories, poetry, beauty blogs, foodies, overall lifestyle blogs and my personal niche, the mommy blog. There’s a blog for everything and everybody!

But if you are going to put the time into writing articles you want people to be able to read and enjoy, just please clean it up a little, cut out a few ads and make it easier to read. I’m incredibly distracted already, I don’t need your flashing pop-ups and wallpaper sized photos competing for my limited attention.

 

From Infertility Blogger to Author, the First Step is the Hardest

I just saw on another blog that this weekend ends National Infertility Awareness Week. I had been planning on writing something for it, since I struggled for seven years off and on trying to conceive. Heck, I’ve even been planning to write a book about my experience since I blogged the entire thing in my first (and anonymous) blog.

But I go to write and I just stare at the screen. I start reading my old blogs and I tear up and stop and walk away. It was just such an incredibly emotionally charged time that I’m having trouble going back there and putting myself through it again, even if it is just mentally.

“Because you’ll never know how badly you want something until you are told that it may not be possible.” – RESOLVE, National Infertility Association

After announcing my pregnancy, so many people told me they didn’t even know I wanted kids. I wasn’t even sure I wanted them most of my life. And I spent the last several years pretending not to want them just to have an answer when people asked why we didn’t have kids yet. It was an easier answer than launching into our fertility struggles.

So when we finally decided to do IVF, we didn’t tell anyone outside of close friends and family. And even then, we didn’t say much. I don’t know what I would have done without my blog and the blogging community I connected with while sharing my story. It gave me the emotional outlet I needed. I could scream, cry, laugh about what I was going through and was connected with women going through the same thing. We cheered each other’s successes and consoled each other through the losses.

And remembering that is what keeps pushing me to write the book. I remember searching and searching for stories to read about women going through infertility, looking for happy endings, looking for anything to connect to while going through such an alien procedure. I’m the kind of person who avoids the doctor unless I think I’m absolutely dying, and here I was volunteering to shoot myself full of drugs and subject myself to countless doctor visits. It consumes your life when you are going through it.

So I feel it’s a book that needs to be written. It’s a book with a purpose. I feel that if I can help even one person by sharing my story, it’s worth it. So here I am, just trying to amp myself up to revisit that blog and the rollercoaster of emotion connected to it and write that first page.

i should write a book cat

 

 

 

Back to Blogging Basics

I spent some time yesterday crafting a post about how toddlers are assholes. It was basically just me ranting about my tremendously crappy day that resulted in me crying while my son ran off to pee on the floor. (#momlife at its best 🙄)

But I didn’t post it because it wasn’t a full article type post with a point and perfectly prepared pics. Ha! Try saying that 5 times fast.

My original blog, the anonymous one about my IVF experience, really gave me an emotional outlet. I didn’t care about stats and likes, I just shared to get it all off my chest. But things changed when I decided to do a “real blog.”

My posts became more planned out. I started thinking of them more like magazine articles. And sometimes I’m doing paid posts and it starts to feel like a homework assignment!

It’s making it all more like work and less like the emotional and creative outlet that attracted me to blogging in the first place. So while I still plan to keep that part going, I’m also going to just pop in here with no big agenda, no sponsored links and just write about life and enjoy myself.

So the blog continues to evolve… even if it is something of a step back to a simpler time. A time before I knew what an Amazon affiliate was… lol

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Good Morning! Just a little update

IMG_2233It’s Tuesday and I don’t have anything particular planned to post today. It was a busy weekend with two birthdays and family visiting so there was very little computer time. I even took the entire day offline Sunday and just worked in the yard. Not even one Facebook update about all the new things I planted. It felt good to just do things and not try and get a perfect photo and share and tag and hashtag.

There’s a lot of things I need to catch up on and do a blog post about – My son turned the big 3 on Saturday and I threw my first kid party. His birthday is almost the same as his dad’s, so they’ve been having combo parties until now. Birdy Boutique sent me several cute things for the party, including the awesome birthday crown I’m wearing in the photo. It reminded me of Max’s crown in Where the Wilds Things Are. Of course my son refused to wear that, or the bow ties, or super cool dinosaur capes they sent! So I’m still working on pics of all that.

My grandmother brought me a Copper Crisper air fryer thing and I gave it a try with sweet potatoes. I wasn’t blown away by the results, but I did take pics of it all, so plan on a riveting review coming soon.

House renovations are still in full swing. We are currently working on adding pavers and a fire pit to the big jungle area we have in front. There’s probably a blog post in there somewhere…

And we got a pile of great books from Good Night Books but seem to be stalled on the first one. I was really looking forward to trying to get a bedtime story reading thing going but Keelan just isn’t having it. I haven’t managed to get all the way through one of the books without him skipping to the end and throwing it. Starting to suspect this kid does not share his mom’s love of books. All I can do is keep trying right?

Well as usual, if it links to Amazon, it’s an affiliate link. I’m off now to go do a Skype interview for an infomercial casting for a new Ninja cooking system. I’ve actually done a lot of Skype casting interviews for reality type TV shows always wonder if I’m just wasting my time. This is my first commercial casing! But just like with reading books to my son, I figure if I just keep trying and not expect too much, maybe something will come out of it, lol.

Hope you all had a great weekend! Wish me luck on my interview 🙂