So its the season of the MADs (Mum and Dads) Awards and the nominations are open, in a bid to discover what this was all about and how to enter I stumbled into their site, glanced through the different pages whilst feeding the littlest one and then headed to the nomination page. Now I thought I had to put my blog name forward in order for anyone to nominate me (didn’t read the instructions carefully!!!), so there I was putting in my URL, clicked enter, thought about which categories my blog best suited, screen shot the process so I would remember what I did for when I “sold” myself for nominations and clicked enter.
Then I saw some of the hints and tips and how its all about sharing the love for other bloggers out there….bollocks I hadn’t even thought that far ahead, instead I was just winging my way through it, using myself as a guinea pig….school boy error. I had submitted my ‘nominations’ – mainly blank for the odd couple that I thought mine would fit into and used up my entry. Nice one Josie!!!
Then I looked through the different categories and realised I am shit!!! I couldn’t name another blogger that I could pop into the other remaining categories. Don’t get me wrong I do follow and read what other bloggers write, there’s some wonderful stuff out there. But I couldn’t pinpoint who was my favourite food blogger….have I got a food blogger or two that I actively engage in? who was my favourite photography/pregnancy/craft blogger??….Jesus Christ I am one big epic fail. I’m stumped.
You see, I started this whole blogging thing as a cathartic was of recording what was going on in my life with the boys, sharing it with other mum’s so we could all nod along and share our tales of woe. Then I started to think a little bigger than my mum chum audience and dipped my toe into the pool of Twitter. Now I kind of use Twitter, I have a decent number of followers but I still don’t properly ‘get it’. If I see something that catches my eye I will retweet it, I try to engage with followers and other bloggers and I try to tag people in my tweets to increase engagement but I just can’t quite get the feel of it, I just don’t quite get it.
Facebook on the other hand I get, I’ve built my page, I share other peoples stories/blog posts/videos/pictures that I find amusing or relevant, I share the love as well as promoting my own posts. Is it more of a visual thing that’s working for me here.
Then there’s Instagram, I am starting to really feel the Instagram love, it must be a visual thing again.
I like the imagery, the quick like to a pretty picture, a quick comment here and there, building a profile of pretty pictures and exploring a whole world of visual amazement, throw in a few hashtags, build up a regular number of likers who pop by and say hello, it feels a little more personal than Twitter. I realise that I am following some of the same bloggers on Twitter who I don’t really interact with but on Instagram I’m like clicking love hearts all over their page. But then that’s not really taking me to their content and this is where my downfall is.
How can I expect people to interact with my blog and read my posts if I’m not actively doing the same?
I guess I’m finding it hard to get the balance right and juggle everything that goes on in the day, sometimes I just have to put the phone down and remember to engage with my boys not with my ‘following’. Other days it’s like, wake up – check Facebook, take a picture – Instagram it, throw a load of hashtags at it, share on Twitter and Facebook, get out of bed. Meander downstairs, grab the Cheerios and feed the boys, oh they look cute, quick take a picture, Instagram it, make my breakfast, Instagram it, share on Twitter and Facebook, check my emails, write a list of jobs to do for the day, ping ping ping, my phone is calling me, check Facebook, check Instagram, ooh that’s a pretty picture, like, like like, damn the boys nappies need changing. Time to get dressed, something funny has happened, take a picture, Instagram it, check Facebook, ooh an interesting looking article, read, laugh, share on my page, shit the boys are running around with no nappies on and suddenly its gone from 7am to 10am. Time to get us out of the house.
That’s before we’ve gotten out of the house to do something, once the boys are down in bed for their nap I am simultaneously trying to tidy, clean, put washing on, make tea and upload, update and share. Then I remember it’s Marvellous Monday or Twinkly Tuesday or FabFriday and I should upload a post or two to a Linky party. Now I can only really do this if I know I have definitely got the time to adhere to the rules. I don’t want to be a post and run kind of blogger so I do take my time to read through the required number of posts and try to leave adequate feedback that isn’t just “Great post!!!” But that in itself takes….you got it…. time!! I choose a post based on a catchy title, yes I am judging a book by its cover but that’s how I work, if it catches my attention I will read it and then I want to read it properly rather than skim through thinking “blah blah whats the jist? here’s my comment now here’s my post!! Boom shared, let the followers come flocking”
But to fit that in to my already hectic day where I may only have a matter of moments before the boys wake and I still need to pee, eat, drink and dammit that load of laundry needs to be washed again, don’t get me started on the folding pile……
By the time I’ve gotten through to the end of the day, I am usually a little brain dead but if I’m not and I have some creative juices still flowing then I try and get down the blog idea that has been floating around my brain since it popped into my head at 4am that morning, here comes another dilemma, my tools in which I blog with, it’s either my phone or my prehistoric laptop that takes about half and hour just to load up, it’s ridiculous, I need a new one but I don’t have the spare pennies at the moment for such beautiful luxuries. By the time I’ve sat down, written something, edited, added pictures, uploaded, shared, the littlest one wakes up and demands a boob.
Then there’s the type of blogger that I am, I’m a reactive blogger, I blog when something happens, I blog when emotions are high whether they be happy, sad, frustrating….you get it! So I am crap at thinking I will schedule my thoughts until 2 pm tomorrow when the youngest has his nap and the eldest is at nursery. I don’t work like that! But then it’s the same with trying to share the love, I’m not setting any time aside to get to know some bloggers and read what they write. I can name quite a few but what they write or have written eludes me and I feel ashamed to say that.
So what have I learnt in the last 10 months or so of being a blogger….erm…I like to write, I think sometimes I’m good at it, I don’t get Twitter, I’m trying I really am, Facebook is my friend for sharing the love – although my own personal feed is not quite filled with bloggers as it started to drown out my family and friends so I need to work on seeing other peoples content through my blog page and Instagram I am loving at the mo….its just so pretty….don’t get me started on trying to link Pinterest with it all, too many social media platforms melting my brain.
So for all you other bloggers out there don’t despair I am actively making a point of coming to discover you more than I have done so already and I’m looking forward to getting to know your blogs….now if someone could give me an extra 12 hours or so in each day I might just start making a dent. Seriously how does everyone else do it???
Man I’m shit at this! Note to self – sort yourself out!!!
**Update** Since writing this post I have become a true phone hogger neglecting my husbands pleas to sit and watch TV with him while I have hidden myself clutching my ‘prescious’ like a mumsy version of Gollum and embraced the community spirit. I’ve managed to sit, read and nominate properly so here were my nominations for the MAD Blog awards, come check them out.
School days: https://domesticatedmomster.com
Family travel: http://modernmummy.co.uk