I underestimated May this year. Rookie mom mistake. (Unforgivable, really, given that this is my 10th summer of parenting.)
If you don’t have kids in school yet, maybe May isn’t your insane time of year. But, trust me, once your children are school-aged, May reaches a Thanksgiving-to-New-Year’s-Eve level of insanity. You have ALL the end-of-the-year school things (fun nights at school, awards ceremonies, orientations for the summer/next fall), plus ALL the spring sports stuff (hello there, soccer, gymnastics, karate, swimming …).
Also, there’s your regular ol’ life to live.
I know this. Except, somehow, this year I underestimated May. As a result, I’ve spent the entire month behind the 8 ball.
My blog, however, can’t dry up while I’m playing full-time chauffeur/chaperone/assistant coach mom.
So for those times — in May or otherwise — when there’s just too much going on to spend hours on blogging, here are some ideas for quick-hits that will keep your blog fresh even when your time is limited.
Some of these you might just see in the future on motherbility (wink). But they’re designed to be adaptable. So please take any of these ideas, as is, or make them your own.
Blogging Quick Hits
Updates: Do you have a previous post from a while back that you absolutely love, or was particularly popular? Is there a way to update it? Maybe you wrote about your child struggling with middle school or your family vacation to Yellowstone. Add “UPDATE” and a few new paragraphs at the top and re-run it. (This really only works if you’ve been blogging for a while. If you have five posts, it’s too early for an update!) The Update on your middle-schooler could be a quick conversation with him/her on how it went, or a strategy you tried. The Update on the Yellowstone trip could just be, “Hey, everyone! It’s summer-vacation time again, so I thought I’d send a reminder of our trip last year, including everything I learned to make your trip better!” It’s kind of cheating. But it may bring in new readers to something you’ve already written. You really CAN use it to provide interesting updates. And it’s quick!
Follow These …: Run a “Blogs I Follow” or “Pinterest Pages I Like” post. Or “Best Instagrams.” There’s minimal writing for you (just a quick description and a link), it draws attention to (presumably) other worthwhile pages, and linking to and commenting on other related sites can help drive traffic to your own.
“Yeah, I tried that” series: Make a list of things new or different, try them out and write about how the fantasy compared with the reality. You can use this idea for anything. Weird foods. Off-the-beaten day trips. Pretty much anything you find on Pinterest. PERFECT for a photo-filled (Read: Not a lot of writing) post. Plus it’s a series, so this can be a go-to idea when writer’s block hits.
How I’ll Spend My Summer Vacation: What are your plans for the summer, and how do you make it through when children aren’t in school? How does the change in their schedule affect yours? What do you do with your kids, whether or not you’re working outside the home? Do you put them in full-time child care? If yes, how much does that cost, and how do you account for the additional expense during the summer months? If you’re at home with them, do you make a plan for summer, or just roll with what comes along? (BONUS POST: Come the end of August/early September, you can write about how summer did — and did not — go as expected, a “How I Spent My Summer Vacation” post. And you can provide an internal link to to your early-summer post. Hurray!)
Your Favorite Personal Story: Chances are, if it’s your favorite personal story, you know it well enough to write it out fast, and well, and there’s probably a pretty good reason you tell it. Bonus points if you explain why your personal story is relevant to your readers. Find the universal in the specific.
Product reviews: Confession: I don’t do them, so I don’t know how long they take or what the process is to start reviewing products. But if you’re pressed for time and you’re interested in reviewing things, it seems like a good time to bang a few of these out.
Kid interviews: Ask your child/children interesting questions and write down their answers. They’re fun to read and (another bonus!) it’s great family-fun and bonding time. (One of my favorite Reddits ever.) A couple of caveats — This will probably be a bust if your children aren’t willing, and it may not fit in with your blog niches. But if they are and it does, I highly recommend.