I have been thinking a lot about my blog lately. I created Naptime Natter way back in 2015 when I was a first time mum to my boy Leo. Blogging was a way of sharing my parenting experience and getting to know other mums; I have never been very good at baby groups so it was comforting to know I could meet other parents without having to make awkward small talk in church halls. A lot has changed since then, I now have two more children and a lot less time. What started off as a bit of fun and a creative outlet, later merged into a sort of job and then became a source of therapy. Writing, and blogging in particular, is something I really enjoy. I love writing stories, sharing my experiences and writing with complete honesty in the hope it helps other mums feel less alone on the hard days. Over the past couple of years blogging has been pushed further and further down my list of priorities, the words ‘write blog post’ rarely making it into the top half of my daily to do list. I still enjoy writing about motherhood but motherhood is the reason I rarely get to write. The busy mum life and the work from home juggle is not the only reason I don’t show up here very often, I have had this niggling feeling for a while that blogging (in particular, reading blogs) isn’t something people still really do in 2020. View Post
Welcome back to #BlogCrush! This is a linky that is all about spreading the blog love. If you are a blogger, come share your posts here along with one from another blogger you love. If you are just someone on the lookout for some new reading material, I can guarantee you are going to find some amazing pieces of writing here.
Have a happy linky, lovelies.
Welcome back to #BlogCrush! How is everyone? I am EXHAUSTED, loving the heat but chasing around the kids in the burning hot sun has been a challenge. Have you had time between soaking up the sunshine to write any blog posts? I hope so, I can’t wait to relax on the beach and read all your wonderful words.
Have a happy linky, lovelies.
I’m back! It feels like forever since I last hosted the #BlogCrush blogger link up, I have moved house and things have been CRAZY!
Alice and Lucy have done an amazing job (as always) as hosts and I am very sad to report that Alice will no longer be co hosting the linky. Lucy is on the look out for a new co host but I am still going to be here, reading, commenting and sharing all your posts once a month.
I hope you are all well and I am looking forward to seeing all the blogs you have been enjoying recently and reading your fabulous content.
Hey there lovely bloggers! Welcome back to another week of #BlogCrush, I have had a manic week with Leo being off school for Easter and that is why I am soo late getting this post written – school holidays have a lot to answer for!
I hope you all had a wonderful week and had a great Easter. I probably ate atleast six eggs so I am on a serious chocolate detox for the next few weeks.
Thanks for stopping by and if you are new to #BlogCrush, please be sure to check out the rules before linking up. I am looking forward to reading all your posts this week.
Happy linking! View Post
Happy snowy Friday everyone! Also, happy March! Although, it looks like the middle of the coldest winter outside my window right now. I hope you have all had a lovely week playing in the snow and retreating back to the sofa and huddling under blankets in the evenings – well, that’s what we’ve been doing anyway.
Before we get started with the linky, don’t forget the #BlogCrush birthday giveaway is still running. We have over £60 worth of prizes up for grabs to celebrate with you lovely bloggers our linky turning one whole year old, scroll to the bottom of this post to enter. View Post
Well, can you believe it? #BlogCrush linky is now one whole year old! This time 12 months ago Lucy and I were stressing out over how to actually set up a linky, let alone host one every week and get lots of bloggers to join in. We did it though and over the past year a beautiful community of bloggers has been built with this linky, we have regulars coming back week after week and lots of new faces starting to join in with the fun too. Some of my favourite bloggers and talented, amazing writers that I have met through this linky. Over the last year there have been a few changes to #BlogCrush, the most significant being my departure as a full time co host in September and Alice, from Letters to my Daughter, stepping in to host with Lucy 3 weeks out of the month instead. We make a good team and I love being a part of #BlogCrush. View Post
Happy Friday lovely bloggers and HURRAH for February! I am so happy to see the end of January, it was a month full of rain, dark clouds, germs and serious scrimping as we tried to claw back some pennies after the big Christmas splurge. How are you? Thank you for joining Lucy and I for #BlogCrush – I am looking forward to reading all your posts.
Eeep, I am so excited to bring you this news! I am launching my very own Instagram community today , #mumsthatgotthis . For all of it’s flaws (algorithm of doom just being one), I do really love Instagram and my favourite thing about it is the wonderful community feel the app has. I love that you can go on to Instastories feeling a bit rubbish and then DM after DM start to pour into your inbox, messages of reassurance and support that can completely turn a crap day around. My favourite places to hang out on Instagram are the hashtags started by other parent bloggers, they are a great way to catch up with everyone and to chat with other parents, whilst admiring their gorgeous photos too of course. One of my goals for 2018 is to build a community, both on Facebook and Instagram of parents all there to support, reassure and (hopefully) become friends with each other. I started Naptime Natter Mums on Facebook at the beginning of January (you can join here) and today #mumsthatgotthis is launching on Instagram – yay! View Post
Happy new year Blogcrushers!
Can you believe it is 2018?! I hope you have all enjoyed the festive break and are feeling positive and motivated for the year ahead. Thank you to everyone who took time out from eating Christmas leftovers and drinking prosecco to come link up with us last week. This week Alice and I are hosting again as Lucy is still enjoying a much deserved break. View Post
Hello! Welcome back for another week of #BlogCrush , this week Alice and I are hosting as Lucy is having a well deserved break over the Christmas holidays.
Speaking of Christmas, how was yours? I hope you had a lovely time, we had a great day just the four of us and seeing the kids open their presents and get swept up in all the magic was just amazing.
So, if you have had time to write amongst all the festivities and indulged in some blog reading too then please come and link your posts up with us. #BlogCrush is the kindest linky around, you link up one of your own posts and one from a blogger you love too. It is a great way to get the work of the bloggers you admire seen by more people and get some extra love thrown your blogs way too.
As well as tweeting and commenting on your posts every week, we now also have a #BlogCrush pinterest board where we will be pinning all your posts and our featured bloggers will be pinned to our extra special best of #BlogCrush board – so exciting!
If you use Pinterest we would love for you to follow us over there
Grab yourself a cuppa, what is left of the Christmas chocolate and come join us for the last #BlogCrush linky of 2017.
Lucy’s #BlogCrush from last week is Miller in the City – Teaching children the gift of giving back
Alice’s #BlogCrush from last week is The Elephant mum – How I came to appreciate the Finnish adoptive system
Congratulations to you featured bloggers, if you would like you can grab the featured badge below to display on your blog. Also, if any of you noticed one of your posts featured as someone’s #BlogCrush in the last link up, feel free to grab the badge too 🙂
#BlogCrush – week 46
This week I am linking up my latest post Life goals and blog dreams for 2018. I know it seems a little boring writing a blog post all about your goals for the year ahead and some people can feel like setting new years resolutions is a little bit cliché but I actually find the start of a new year serves as great motivation for me and I love to set myself goals to keep me focussed.
Grab the badge and let’s get linking!
Remember to tag @naptimenatter @lucy_at_home and @L2MyDaughter on twitter for a retweet.
Here are the rules ..
* The linky will run every Friday 6am – Sunday 9pm (UK time)
* You can link up 2 posts per week – 1 of your own posts and 1 post by a blogger that you love, your #BlogCrush
* Please add BC in the inlinkz form when you add the link for your blog crush post
* Add the #BlogCrush badge to the post you are linking up from your own blog.
* Tweet @naptimenatter and @lucy_at_home on twitter and we will retweet your links
* Also, tweet your #BlogCrush to let them know you have added them to the linky
* Comment on one of my posts and one of Lucy’s posts, and 2 personal posts (not BC) – that is a total of 4 comments please. This linky is all about sharing the blogger love so if you want to comment on more posts too then please go ahead and of course stop by some of the BC posts too if you have the time 🙂
* Lucy and I will comment on all the posts and share them all on our Twitter accounts.
* Each host will choose a favourite post and feature it in the next linky post as well as linking it up as their #BlogCrush post in the following week’s linky.
* If you could also follow Lucy and I on social media then we will love you forever. Naptime Natter Facebook, twitter , Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube Lucy At Home twitter , facebook, Instagram , Pinterest and Letters to my Daughter Facebook, twitter, Instagram and Pinterest
Happy linking lovelies!
The new year is almost upon us, what the actual eff you guys? I really can not believe 2017 has pretty much come to a close and, as I do every year, it is time to look back on the last 12 months and to plan and write down all my hopes and dreams for the year ahead. 2017 started off bad, post natal depression was at it’s worst in January, but as the months progressed I started to feel better and more like my old self and now, compared to a year ago, my mental health is in great shape. Family life has evolved so much over the last year too: Alex has grown from a squidgy little newborn into a fully fledged toddler (he started walking a couple of days ago), Leo said goodbye to toddlerhood and started school in September and we finally moved out from living in work based accommodation to a cute little house in a lovely quiet little part of town. My blog has grown this year too, I have struggled to commit as much time as I would like to writing with two little people to look after but I have managed to write lots of posts that I am really proud of and make a bit of extra cash too. View Post
It is me and Lucy hosting this week, if you are new here then welcome and if you are one of our regulars then welcome back! I love reading everyone’s posts and finding out who everyone’s favourite bloggers are. So, shall we get started?
Firstly, can I just say a massive sorry for going AWOL from this linky, with no explanation as to why I was leaving and what was going on. You lovely lot are an amazing and generous bunch of bloggers and it was so not cool of me to just ditch you all without so much as a goodbye.
Basically, things got pretty stressful back in September, Leo started school, we moved house and I was feeling overwhelmed with the heavy load of blog work I had to get through. Life has calmed down a bit now and I am in a much better head space and I am excited to announce that once a month I will be here, hosting #BlogCrush again with the, quite frankly, friggin amazing Lucy from Lucy at Home.
In my absence, Alice from Letters to my Daughter has joined the #BlogCrush team and she will continue to co host the linky three weeks of the month with Lucy as I just don’t feel able to commit to the linky every week anymore.
Anyway, now you know what’s been going on with me, shall we get this party started? View Post
I am writing to you today as I am bit concerned that I may have done something to upset you? I am not sure what exactly but you seem to be punishing me for some reason. It hardly seems fair to me, considering the hours I spend with you every single day and the fact I have been in love with you since around about the summer of 2013. You definitely are not treating me as nice as you once did though so I need to ask you this question- have I done something to offend you?
Each day I open you up on my phone and I love nothing more than to browse all the little squares of beauty filling up my screen. Inspirational posts, motivational posts, stunning posts and (my favourite) oh so relatable posts. If I had more hours in my day I would happily let myself get lost down the rabbit hole that is my Instagram feed, I have responsibilities though so I have learnt to drag my eyes away from you.
I would be lying if I said I only use you for browsing other people’s beautiful photographs though. My relationship with you has always been a little bit of give and take, I am a blogger you see so that’s the way it needs to be. As well as looking at everyone else’s little squares of pixels, I also regularly like to chuck some of my own photographs into the mix too: photos of my sons, a cake I have baked or a pretty beach scene. I love how you make me try and take better photos, how you have shown me the power of editing and how you have connected me to so many other people sharing similar interests to me. I will always love the communities that live within you Instagram but I am starting to fall out of love with you.
I just want to ask, why won’t you let me grow? Why are you stopping my little squares reaching the eyes of those who might be interested in what I have to say? For a long while my followers were growing nicely but the past 6 months or so they have pretty much been stagnant. Is it because I haven’t mastered creating that almost unachievable goal of the perfect Insta theme? Is it because my photographs aren’t all carefully composed flat lays or have a brilliant white background? Perhaps the photographs I am putting out there just aren’t good enough, maybe my captions are just not engaging and maybe my inability to grow has nothing to do with you at all. That might sometimes be the case, we all chuck out a photo that’s a little bit pants every now and then, but I think your evil algorithm is to blame.
Once upon a time I would get over 100 people pressing that little heart of yours and sharing the love on every single one of my photos. Those were the good days, when my followers actually got to see my photos and were able to engage with me. Not like now, when unless I behave like some kind of digital ninja to beat your algorithm my photos are only being seen by a handful of my followers. I know it’s not just me, that other people who use you also feel the same. There are so many bloggers like me, trying to grow but just can’t seem to do it. Some businesses and bloggers have you all figured out, I have tried following their secret tips though and so far none of their Insta magic is working for me. So I have to ask you again Instagram, have I done something to offend you?
You won’t let me grow even though I post a new photo almost every single day. You won’t let me grow even though I like and comment on so many of the beautiful photos that flood my iPhone screen every hour of every day. Why won’t you let me grow even though I hashtag all my little squares to within an inch of their life and then search those hashtags, liking, commenting and following the feeds that spark my interest and make my eyes smile with their beauty? I ask questions, I write long captions, I write short captions and, hell, I chuck the odd emoji in there too. I use key words, I write about things my followers are interested in, I spend time trying to take photos that people will actually enjoy looking at. I post in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening and even in the middle of the night. Yet still you don’t let me grow.
I don’t know what more I can do Instagram. Do you want me to pay you, is that it? Do I need to sponsor all my own content if I want any hope of getting noticed in this cut throat platform of yours? Well, I am not willing to do that. I have had it with your torturous algorithm . If I lose out on blog work because I don’t have enough engagement or followers then so be it. I am fed up with seeing my likes drop with every photo I post and watching my followers go up by 2 every week only for 10 people to unfollow me the next. I’ve had enough.
No matter how much I wish I could, I am not leaving you for good Instagram. You are like that boyfriend I had as a teenager, you are so not good for me but for some reason I just can’t stop coming back to you for more. I am giving up checking my stats though, any theme I was trying to establish is being thrown in the bin and instead I will be posting whatever I fancy, whenever I fancy. I liked it when things were fun between us and I want to find that again, it got lost somewhere along my journey for more followers and your refusal to let me reach them.
I love you Instagram, I just don’t like you very much right now.
Best wishes (but not really),
Are you a blogger struggling to grow your Instagram following? Have you noticed a drop in engagement recently too? For those of you who have mastered the fine art of Instagramming, please share your secrets in the comments.