Last week I ended up taking an impromptu break from blogging. Between a nutrition seminar the Saturday before, and a Sunday spent cleaning all the messes left by our mouse visitor, I was left with no time to work on any projects or recipes like I usually do on weekends. (Although I did remember to take pictures of the Sweet Potato Hash while I made it!)
With a full-time job and two part-time jobs, plus regular physio and yoga, I am barely home long enough on weeknights to make dinner, unwind a bit and go to bed. That means that working on content for blog posts is usually reserved for weekends, or the rare weeknight that is free.
I edit the photos on my laptop while I watch TV and wind down at night. Writing is usually done in the last hour before I go to bed, and the editing is finished up while I eat breakfast at the computer.
Usually on weekends, I try to work on several projects or recipes. This is not only when I have the most time, but I also get natural light! It’s a bit easier in the warmer months, when we have light longer, but right now it is rarely light out before I leave for work or come home.
This may mean working on a couple of projects during the week, and then taking the photos on the weekend, or prepping a recipe on Friday night and making it Saturday morning. I love working on new content and I have to admit that I get most excited about these mornings when I get to get the creative side of my brain working.
How I Keep the Blog Organized
The only way that I can get posts done every week is by being organized. That means planning out what projects and recipes I want to accomplish every weekend, scheduling upcoming posts, and keeping on top of new ideas.
Everything to do with the blog is either stored electronically, or I keep it in this little notebook from the Martha Stewart Collection at Staples. I’ll do another post soon on how I store (and backup) everything electronically.
Inside the notebook, I keep a printed copy of my Blog Calendar for that month and the upcoming month. I update this every week electronically because things can change. I may want to move up the date for a certain post, or I may have a week like last week, where I only post once. This is also helpful to look back and see when I posted something.
Here is a template of the calendar that I use for 2013. I know that some bloggers like to have printed out calendars and write their blog post schedule on, but I prefer an electronic version for editing, and then just keeping a current printed version with me. I often highlight any projects that still need photos done on the upcoming weekend.
Having the whole calendar laid out also helps me plan out for the year. How soon should I start working on Easter ideas? Are there significant dates that I want to post about? Plan out pre-written blog posts for an upcoming vacation?
Inside the notebook there is also a handy little pocket. This is where I keep magazine clippings for some inspiration, recipes ideas (which reminds me that I still want to make those Salted Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies!). I also keep a post-it note with supplies I need to pick up for upcoming projects.
Inside that pocket, I usually find many little scraps of paper with recipes scribbled on them. When inspiration strikes, I just jot it down on anything nearby, and then slip it into the notebook. Otherwise, I jot them right down in the notebook for a later date.
Even with all the planning and scheduling time for creating, taking photos and writing, there are still times when I just can’t get a post churned out in time for that day.
Hitting “publish” at the end of each post is incredibly satisfying and I feel so lucky to have this creative outlet, I just have to remind myself that this is a hobby and that I can give myself some slack from time-to-time. And just plan a bit better for the next week.