I also have 3 littles ages 4 (almost 5), 2 (almost 3), and a 1 year old on the 28th of this month… Since my SAH journey began with the birth of my second child, I’ve dabbled in a few different “work” activities to bring in a little bit of extra money for my family, including starting a Baby Boot Camp franchise. I really loved doing that with two kids, but it’s impossible since the third is here. Anyways, I have thought many times about starting a blog, but I really don’t know where to begin, or even if that’s something I should do. What have you found about blogging? I saw where you have recently decided to take a step back from blogging all the time. What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about it? Do you use your blog to make money (through affiliate programs, etc.)? Do you feel like it requires too much time, or takes time away from your job as a wife, mother, homemaker?
Thank you for taking the time to reply!
I really started answering your questions through my email account, but I’m entirely too talkative and realized my response was remarkably ‘blog post length’. Besides, it’s not the first time I’ve been asked this question. I might as well get it out here for all to see!
What would I recommend to the Mom of Littles who wants to blog? Is it worth your time? Is it lucrative? Is it even possible?
I have many thoughts on it, but I’ll have to make it brief. You see, I have a baby that’s miraculously sleeping in his crib ALL BY HIMSELF, which means, I have both hands to type. *hallelujah chorus* However, I’m not sure how long that’s going to last. So, lemme get my words out here.
Blogging. It’s fun. It takes time. It’s a stress-reliever. It can be a lot of fun. It can be a major headache. It can give you guilt where it shouldn’t. A thankful comment from someone you don’t even know on the other side of the world can make your week.
Would I recommend starting a blog? Sure! If you enjoy writing, why wouldn’t you? The best thing about blogging is that it’s a relatively low-expense hobby. There are so many free blog hosting websites, that you can try your hand at it and ditch it later on if you get bored and you’ve cost your family very little. Except for time. Writing does take time. For me, I find writing therapeutic. I feel like I’ve accomplished something. I get to read my own thoughts out-loud in a more linear, organized fashion. Even if no one reads what I write, it’s good for me. It helps me think through what I really believe, want, or think.
But watch that time factor… For me, I’m a MOM first and a blogger second. Blogging can be addicting. Anything delicious and wonderful can be addicting, for that matter. One donut is good for your mental health. Twenty donuts might send you into a sugar coma. Just like donut-eating, keep blogging in moderation. Figure out the niche of your day that doesn’t cost your family mental/emotional trauma and claim it guilt-free. However, if you’re habitually putting blogging above your family’s needs, be willing to cut ties. Nothing’s that important.
Don’t expect it to be lucrative. Instead, desire to be helpful. People will flock to you if you’re helpful. People that are being helped regularly give you blog traffic which can give you income if you’ve set up your blog that way. I ran a free version of Organizing Life With Littles until I had several thousand views daily. Then I realized, much to my surprise, that I might actually be able to make some spending cash. If I were willing to put an 8-hour work day into my blog, I’m sure I could make it into a full time job that pays accordingly. However, I’m not. Your financial gains will reflect the time you put into it. A little time = possibly a little cash. A lot of time = probably a lot more cash. However, only if you’re helpful.
Diary blogs don’t make money. Helpful blogs do. Busy people don’t have time to follow the life of someone they don’t know just because. If my blog was titled ‘Kelsey’s Musings’ I’d probably have a lot fewer followers. Instead, I’m here to help encourage and organize you (to the best of my ability). Hence the ‘let me help you’ blog title. So figure out what you’re good at and advertise it. Good at crafting? Cooking? Teaching kids? Making learning fun? Staying in shape? Saving money? Emphasize THAT and you’ll catch people.
Advertise that in your blog title. For example, one of my closest Mommy friends recently changed her blog title from Little House in the Hills to the catchier title of Clean House With Kids. You see, Tricia’s great at keeping a tidy home AND she has four kids ages 5 and under. Amazing, right? (She also is out of the newborn stage so actually posts more regularly than I’ve been doing) Anyhow, she had the same great content earlier, but wasn’t advertising it with her title. Make your helpfulness obvious right up front.
Don’t get discouraged with your reader count. What if you post something and only twenty people read it? What if only six people read it? Is it worthless? Do you suck as a blogger?
Sometimes I think the digital world really marginalizes people. This is where your desire to be helpful really has to be genuine. What if you had twenty ladies come to your home and ask you how you organize your child’s preschool routine? What if it was just six? Would you feel honored then? Six, in-the-flesh Moms interested in how YOU do things? Why should 6-20 digital views on your post feel any differently?
If there’s any last bit of advice I have for you, it’d be to NOT STRESS over it. Take care of your kids first and blog when you can. A little is better than nothing. Eventually those posts will increase and gather up, whether or not you have a 5 times a week blogging schedule or a once a month schedule. For example, I still get readers on posts I wrote several years ago. If it’s helpful, it’ll get pinned and shared and spread around without you.
Pick up a few blogging books and learn how to make attractive images. Because people are visual (notice the irony of this post not having an image) and other blogging experts know a lot more than I do about things. Barnes and Noble has a stack of how-to blogging books and they also have great coffee. Get your husband to take you on a date there sometime. You deserve it, with so many little kiddos. Tell him I said so.
So, in summary, try to be helpful. Always take care of your family first. But if you like to write? Go for it!
You might make money off of it and you might not. But it sure is fun and you have so little to lose.
P.S. Send me a link to your blog when you get it up!