Blogger Recognition Award

First of all, thank you to lovely Trupti at Girls Glamour for nominating me. Do go check out her blog, she has a variety of posts, plenty of great reading!

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How did my blog begin?

Well, in short, it begun as a hobby several years ago now (almost a decade infact!) when I first became a parent. I have written about the beginnings of my blog before. 

My Top Tips For New Bloggers

  • Network – join facebook groups, twitter chats, and even attend conferences/ events if possible. Put in the time and effort to connect with other bloggers. It is a great way to get support and advice, and make friends too!
  • Take it one step at a time – there are many aspects to blogging and it is likely to be far too overwhelming to take it all on at once. Focus on one area to learn about and work on, until it starts to come more naturally and slots in to your schedule/ process easily, then start on the next thing.
  • Be yourself – whether you have a specific niche or cover lots of subjects, open your heart out or are more reserved, write how you speak or more formally, stick to your own personal style and just do you!
  • Focus on social media as much as your blog – if you want people to find and read your content, you need to engage with others and actually share your blog posts so they get seen!

I now nominate the following fab bloggers:

If you would like to take part, the ‘rules’ are simple…

  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give your top tips/ advice to new bloggers.
  • Select other bloggers you think should be nominated for this award and tag them in the post. Remember to let them know they have been nominated! Don’t forget to also link back to the person who nominated you as well.

Thank you to everyone, let’s all keep supporting each other!

Love Your Body: Live Your Life by Shopaholic Adventures (Guest Post) 

“The greatest fear in the world is of the opinions of others. And the moment you are unafraid of the crowd, you are no longer a sheep, you become a lion. A great roar arises in your heart, the roar of freedom.”

– Osho

Fashion is something I’ve always been passionate about, but it wasn’t always an easy hobby to have as a chubby girl in school and college, with limited options to wear to hide my fat.  I never had the confidence to fit into the kind of clothes my friends wore, this was the biggest beauty-anxiety and insecurity, I struggled with throughout my adolescent and teen years. 

I tried my best to loose weight, from GM Diet, aerobics, yoga (inspired by weightloss journey of Kareena Kapoor and religiously doing 50 surya namaskars every day), skipping meals, to diets and more diets and I would be lying if I say it dint loose, I did loose but it was a temporary weight loss and I gained back again within 2-3 months.

But the truth is, I know better – we all know better! Happiness is not a number on the scale. Happiness is from inside, its believing in you, self confidence. I learnt it the hard way after years of diets and exercise, I looked in the mirror and asked myself why I spent so much time hating my wide hips, lack of a thigh gap, thunder thighs, cellulite, stretch marks, thick knees? I asked myself, was wasting time focusing on the outside, worth being trapped in a mental prison of unhappiness on the inside?

“You get to be a beautiful, “flawed,” and perfectly imperfect human being. You can choose to go from being a victim to becoming the hero of your own life story. There is no room for failure as YOU become in charge of yourself!!”

body confidence, body positive, plus size, inspirational, fashion, blogger, Shopaholic Adventures, guest post, Living Life Our Way

From that moment on, I made an effort to focus on accepting things about myself I once considered flaws. That was the day I got the confidence to pursue my love for fashion and be a fashion blogger, try new looks and styles and wear what I like. I love to dress up and I do it, I love wearing red and hot pink, and no one can tell me to not to wear as it might make me look fat. Well I say, let it be “that’s who I am. I love myself for who and how I am, and will continue to love myself forever.”

“Your body size will fluctuate but the love you have for yourself will forever remain,

Self-love is unconditional, no rules, no criticisms,

Just over whelming LOVE!!”

body confidence, body positive, plus size, inspirational, fashion, blogger, Shopaholic Adventures, guest post, Living Life Our Way

This guest post was written by Praghti Malhotra, Co-Founder and Editor of Shopaholic Adventures You can also find her on Facebook Instagram and Pinterest.

10 Reasons To Be Happy

I was tagged by The Mum Diaries to write about ten things that make me happy in celebration of International Day of Happiness. (Yes, I do realise I am very late!) So here goes…

1. My family. Ok, granted, they also drive me crazy and make me want to run away screaming sometimes too. But, you know… balance is everything 😉 They definitely come top of the list! Squiggle in particular needs a special mention here. 💜

2. My furbabies. Also part of the family of course, but they deserve a separate mention. How could I not smile at these little cuties!

pets, furbabies, family, about us, blogger, general life, mental health, wellbeing, happiness, Living Life Our Way

3. Photography. I am by no means an expert, I don’t even have proper equipment, but I really enjoy it as a hobby. It brings out the creative side of me and that makes me happy!

4. Writing/ blogging. I started writing a semi- private blog shortly after Squiggle was born, partly as a journal for those early days as new parent and as a way to share our latest news and developments with family. Over the years, this shifted in focus and naturally evolved; firstly to document our home ed journey then to share our love of nature, before developing it into a family lifestyle blog. I am a self- employed blogger now and am grateful that I can earn a small income from my interests! 

5. Outdoors. I love getting outside in nature, it is so relaxing and helps with my overall wellbeing, and therefore my happiness.

6. Live music. Whether it is at a huge festival or local pub, my favourite band or newbies playing covers, I just LOVE it. Seriously get all the feels!

music, concert, gig, kaiser chiefs, about us, blogger, general life, mental health, wellbeing, happiness, Living Life Our Way

7. Nights out. These are fairly rare, like many parents! But having the odd proper night out on the town now and again, catching up with friends (often involving drinking and dancing too!) gives me a chance to let my hair down and socialise. If the night out includes live music, even better!!!

8. My guilty pleasures on TV. Big Brother, Love Island, TOWIE, Made in Chelsea to name but a few…. I can’t help it, I love them!

9. Travel. I want to do more of this. The excitement of new adventures; visiting new countries and exploring new places is something that makes me really happy.

10. Myself. Ultimately happiness comes from within. Looking after my own wellbeing, keeping myself balanced and maintaining my sense of inner peace, all leads to truly being happy.

I now tag Clear and InspiredSo This is Adulthood and From Rachael Claire to write about 10 things that make you happy! 

Innovations in Blogging – What Does The Future Hold?

When I started blogging, I did it simply because I enjoyed writing; I believed that it would never be anything more than a hobby. Not least of all because I honestly thought the only people who could ever make any money from it were the people who got in there quick, when the whole blogging thing first took off. I realise now that is true of some things but I seriously don’t know why I thought that about blogging in particular! 

Fast forward to now and I still blog for the love of it… but now I also get a reasonable part- time income from it too. It is hard work, and there is so much more to it than I could possibly imagine before I got into it. But then again, when you do something you love, it doesn’t really feel like a job as such. And in some ways it has been easier, or at least more achievable, to monetise than I originally thought. I guess the saying is true that it often seems impossible until it is done. So I don’t foresee the popularity of blogging dwindling, if anything I think it will continue to grow.

I firmly believe that blogging can kind of be compared to books; in the sense that although the format might change (e.g. kindle books instead of hard copies), people continue to love to read books in one form or another – regardless of how popular TV, film and internet is. Regardless of other media, the love of books still remains strong. 

So in future, I think blogging will still be popular, and YouTube and podcasts will continue to grow in popularity but not at the expense of written blogs. But I also think bloggers are versatile and flexible so will adapt to the latest trend, as an addition to the services they offer. I suspect platforms like wordpress will continue to be front- runners.

Blogging, I feel, has also become more of a supportive community than it used to be. We all have our strengths, our own angles and our unique points; so to an extent there is room for us all. By working together, we lift each other up, and this makes us all stronger. I think in future our community will continue to grow and thrive; with more collaborations, networking and team work within blogging. I think this will be the case both online and in real life via conferences, events and meet ups. I suspect we will also see an expansion on the number of PR agencies, and an increase in websites who connect bloggers to brands. 

In summary, I would like to think that blogging will remain a viable way to earn an income and the community will continue to grow. At least, I hope so! 

Disclosure: This post is written as part of a study by innovationcompany.co.uk on what bloggers see as the future of blogging. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

A Quick Cuppa With… The Opinionated Dad

Hi all, how are you? How has your week been? What are your plans for this weekend? Well, as it’s Friday and time to wind down, grab yourself a brew (I know, I know, most of my readers are assuming at this time on a Friday evening that must be a typo for wine or pint, or possibly even cocktail… 😉 lol) Anyway, get whatever takes your fancy and ‘meet’ The Opinionated Dad

A Quick Cuppa With, The Opinionated Dad, blogger, interview, Living Life Our Way, guest series, Q and A

Tell me about yourself…

I am a 29 almost 30 year old dad and husband. I am quite a shy person if I am face to face. I think that’s why I enjoy blogging as I don’t have the face to face interaction. I think I am a good dad and husband. I do try my hardest. I am domesticated, knowing how to use the washing machine and dishwasher in our house is essential. At the moment I am a full time stay at home dad and carer to my wonderful wife.

Tell me about your blog. What inspired you to start it? Are you really as opinionated as the name suggests?!

I started my blog as a way of helping with communication issues I have. I’m not a big talker but I can talk better from behind a keyboard. I am opinionated but it’s mainly just in my head. I don’t think the world is ready for it to come out yet. I just thought that I would use the term opinionated as I have a lot of opinions on everything. One inspiration was reading what the Unmumsy Mum writes, I know I’m nothing like her but thought I would share some of my mind with the world.

Name one random fact about yourself.

A random fact….the only thing that comes to mind is I secretly enjoy watching Disney films like ‘The Little Mermaid’ and ‘Beauty and the Beast’.

Who is your biggest inspiration?

My biggest inspiration I would have to say is my wife and daughter. They are my life, my world and without them i would have nothing. I try to see a post in things we do everyday either together or by just observing them. I like to write what’s on my mind and the unmumsy mum has helped me do that by not caring that others might judge what she writes.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

The best advice I had been given must be to get as much sleep as possible before our baby came. However I didn’t listen and the first few months were horrific with lack of sleep. My wife and I even stayed up in shifts to try and combat the fatigue. I must be a glutton for punishment as I am going to be doing it all over again.

Any tips for other dads? Or bloggers? Or dad bloggers?!

My biggest tip is just be yourself. Don’t overthink and let your instincts take over. That can be applied to blogging as well. When you start writing just let it flow and get the article wrote out. You can always go back and edit it if you need to.

Where is your absolute favourite place in the whole world?

I wouldn’t say I have a favourite place really as long as I am with my family I am happy. If I had to pick a location though I would have to say in bed. I love sleeping and I tend to stay up too late and end up getting on average 4-6hrs sleep a night and sometimes I just want to sleep in.

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

In my free time I like to just chill out on the sofa with a strong coffee in my hand, a good TV show on and cuddles with my wife. That is when I’m not blogging mind.

What are your favourite family activities?

My favourite family activity has to be going to soft play. Not for my daughter, just so I can jump around and act a fool in there. I am almost 30 and the bigest kid at heart.

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

My favourite outdoor place would be the park just round the corner. Sophia loves the park and always asks to go. She enjoys the slide and swings. I have a go on them everytime we go too.

Find more about his adventures here…

Blog: www.theopinionateddad.co.uk

Facebook: The Opinionated Dad

Twitter: @opinionateddad


Instagram: theopinionateddad

A Quick Cuppa With… Mumma and Co

Hi everyone!

I’m back for a quick cuppa with fellow blogger Laura! So grab yourself a brew and read all about her lovely family of six below…

Living Life Our Way, blogger, interview, Q and A, guest post, A Quick Cuppa With, Mumma and CoIntroduction

My name is Laura, I’m 24 and a mother to two children – Alfie, 7 and Holly who is almost 12 months old. We are a family of 6 including my fiance and his two boys. We live in the south coast and enjoy long walks, adventures and beating each other on Sonic racing. (I always win, of course.)

Living Life Our Way, blogger, interview, Q and A, guest post, A Quick Cuppa With, Mumma and Co

Tell me about your blog. What is the main theme? What inspired you to start it?

My blog is a motherhood, parenting and lifestyle blog. I mainly cover things which are parenting based, my own experiences and I try to use as much helpful information as I can to help others. I did try to make it more of a ‘crafty’ blog, but I am absolutely awful at crafts, so I guess my dream to become a cool, Pinterest mum will never work out! I wanted to start a blog years ago but never got round to actually starting one. I did finally start up my blog in summer last year, and it’s the best decision I made!

Do you blog full time or do you work as well? How do you juggle your time? Any tips?

I’d say I blog part time, for now. I do have my current job and I work there 3 days a week. I find it really hard trying to juggle my time, with two kids, work and household chores! The only tips which I would give would be to try and figure out how you’re able to manage your time wisely. The only time I am able to sit down at the laptop with a cup of tea when Alfie is at school and Holly is napping, or in the evening when they’re both in bed. It’s good to keep yourself in a strict routine so you don’t fall behind.

Name one random fact about yourself.

My blood type changes in pregnancy!

Who is your biggest inspiration?

I don’t actually have one! I mean, I guess I have a girl crush on Selena Gomez.. can she be my inspiration? Haha!

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Probably “sleep when the baby sleeps” is the best piece of advice I’ve ever received! After having Holly, my house was an absolute bomb site, but I’m so glad I slept whenever I could. I didn’t spend any time worrying about the state of my house & I felt so much better for it.

Where is your absolute favourite place in the whole world?

Probably Ireland, my mum and sted-dad immigrated there two years ago and I love going there to visit! Everyone is so friendly, it’s peaceful and some of the scenaries are incredible.

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

I like to relax when the kids are in bed by getting into my pyjamas, grabbing a glass of wine, putting a face mask on and watching a film! Ah, bliss.

What are your favourite family activities?

Our favourite activities are probably playing football at the park! (me vs. 4 boys doesn’t always go down well).

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

My favourite outdoor place to visit is probably Lulworth Cove, we walk from there all the way to Durdle Door! Despite me almost having an asthma attack half way, it really is a lovely day out, especially when the sun is shining!

Find out more about Mumma and Co’s adventures here:
Blog: 
mummaandco.co.uk
Facebook: 
Mumma & Co
Twitter: 
@_mummaandco
Instagram: @_mummaandco

A Quick Cuppa With… Abi Bumbles

Today’s cuppa is with Abi, who has one foot on either side of the blogging world. Yet both feet are also in Wales, and also often on skates! Read on to find out what the heck I am talking about 😉

A Quick Cuppa With, blogger, guest post, interview, Q and A

Introduction

I’m Abi. I’m 27 and live in North Wales. Not the super pretty bit with mountains and claims of dragons, but a sort of nice, large village. I share my abode with my husband and two Jack Russells. They’re all silly and I love them to pieces, even if between them they chew too many things and get annoyed at me for forgetting to do anything around the house. You might be able to figure out which does which.

I’m a PR with marketing agency and do my damnedest to not be one of the awful ones that gets ripped to shreds in blogger groups. I’m on both sides of the blogger world so end up with some pretty good insights. But that also means that no one really wants to listen thinking I might be biased. Still, it’s enjoyable and I’ve learnt a heck of a lot from all the flipping amazing bloggers out there.

I am, unsurprisingly, a feminist and am making efforts to live a more body positive life as well. These are topics I cover on my blog a lot because the conversations matter. I try to be as open minded as I possibly can, but hate for the sake of it is not something I can abide.

I’m also a bit tattooed because I think they’re super pretty. I’m starting on a half sleeve in February which I am excited and terrified about. I also blog about tattoos a lot because I find them fascinating and I think the more information available, the better..

Name one random fact about yourself.

I play a sport called Roller Derby, for a team imaginatively named North Wales Roller Derby. For those that don’t know, and that’s most people, it’s played on roller skates, on an ovaloid track, it’s full-contact, and no, you cannot elbow people in the face. It’s one of the most inclusive sports I have ever comes across, with women (and men) of every shape and size you can imagine coming together to make a team. There really is a place in the game for every shape of person, from super petite size 2s to big women who want to throw their incredible hips around.


I started playing at 23 and I couldn’t skate at all, could barely stand, and now I’m fully in the sport – on a team and learning to ref. If you’re up for the challenge and aren’t afraid to fall over then it’s the best thing you could get involved with.

Who is your biggest inspiration?

This is a hard question. I guess in recent years, my other half has had a massive impact on my life. We went through some tough stuff a year and a half ago which tested us to our limits and beyond. But we got through it. We survived and I can’t help but be inspired by him. He helps me find my better side when I forget it’s there.

Tell me about your blog. What is the main theme? What inspired you to start it?

I mentioned a bit already about the sort of topics I cover. It’s a mixed bag – well and truly a lifestyle blog. I do muse upon topics somewhat and maybe tend to border on train-of-thought writing, but I enjoy that.

I attempted to do Blogmas, with no prep, and that pushed me out of my comfort zone. I wrote a makeup review, stuff on days out, and even a film review or two. I failed Blogmas after 13 days, but I wrote a post about that too – silver linings and all that.

I’ve been sporadically blogging for the past few years but never managed to stick at it more than a few weeks, each time forgetting how much work it is. But I began my PR job in August last year and began blogging in earnest. I spent hours researching bloggers and matching them to campaigns, chatting to them, editing with them – the whole shebang. I realised that I loved it. I’ve always enjoyed writing and seeing behind the scenes made me realise I could do it. Thank you blogging world!

Do you blog full time or do you work as well? How do you juggle your time? Any tips?

I work full-time so my compromise with myself is to post a minimum of once a week. It’s about all I am willing to dedicate to it at the moment. I’ve tried to do it more in the past but failed because it started to feel like a job. While it’s be great to get the the point of earning from my blog it is primarily a hobby.


My advice, leading on from that, is – as fun as it is to throw yourself into blogging, make sure you keep the enjoyment. If posting once a week is all you can do without going mad – so be it. If writing about hair colour is what gets you going – do that. There are no hard and fast rules, so make your own.

What is the best piece of advice you can give to fellow bloggers?

I’ll put my PR hat on here and give some advice I’m dying to say but always hold back on – if you can’t do a post you’ve agreed to, tell them. Don’t ignore emails, or make up whatever excuse, or even ghost us (yes, it’s happened), be straight up and cancel on us. That way a PR can find someone else and not bother you for a month about something you don’t want to do. When a blogger does cancel, I’m not heartbroken and I don’t resent them. I’m actually really likely to use them again for a different topic – I trust them because they were professional. But when I’m put in a position to chase and pester, I probably won’t because I don’t have time and don’t want to peeve people off.


I always say that I’m willing to help in anyway I can, and I mean it. My job isn’t to yell at you until you do something, it’s have a professional relationship we both benefit from. Bloggers and PRs both need the other, so let’s be pals.

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

I pretty much like being sedentary when I have free time. And eating. Telly, lying down and eating. I suppose this is where I should say more about my love of blogging and roller derby, but I’m going to go with laziness instead.

Since Living Life Our Way is a family lifestyle blog, I’d love to hear more about yours…


What are your favourite family activities?

My family consists of two hyper dogs and big, slightly clumsy, man, so our favourite things to do together are play fight and take long walks. I guess that works for kids too if they’re particularly feisty.

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

My grandparents live along a canal just down from the World Heritage site The Froncysyllte Aqueduct. I also used to work on one of the boats doing tourist trips across it and when I visit still like to go for a wander along it. Despite knowing it so well I love walking across it – the views are amazing all year round and there’s always the fun of people terrified of the heights.

Best family day out?

I don’t know if I’m qualified for this question but I am very eager to try Bounce Below. It’s an old mining cave that has been turned into a multi-level trampoline park. It’s beautiful and fun and scary – what kid wouldn’t love that?

Thank you for taking part!

Read more from Abi here:

Blog: www.abibumbles.com

Facebook: facebook.com/abibumbles

Twitter: @AbiBumbles


Bloglovin: abi-bumbles-18188781

A Quick Cuppa With… Hansla 

Today’s cuppa is with 20 year old Hannah. She is a student studying medicine, and is a massive formula one fan! And you can find my Q&A answers over on her blog now too – thank you Hannah for having me over!

A Quick Cuppa With, Hansla, blogger, guest post, interview, Q and A, Living Life Our Way

Introduction

I’m Hannah and I’m 20 years old from Yorkshire in England. I’m currently living in London while I’m studying Medicine at University College London. I love my family, animals (growing up on a farm will do that!), books and most of all, babies!

A Quick Cuppa With, Hansla, blogger, guest post, interview, Q and A, Living Life Our Way

Name one random fact about yourself.

I’m a massive, obsessed Formula One FAN!

Who is your biggest inspiration?

Jenson Button is a massive idol for me. He’s a Formula One driver and he’s been through so much. When I read his autobiography of his 2009 winning championship season I saw how much strength he had behind the scenes to even secure a drive for the season, let alone a win.


The past few years, his courage dealing with his father’s death in such a public way has been awe inspiring and then in addition to that, his simple positivity while driving a non-competitive car has shown his commitment and dedication to his career and passion. I hope I can only continue to apply the same to my own life and career.

Tell me about your blog. What is the main theme? What inspired you to start it?

My blog is simply about me. I started writing 2 blogs originally, one more public and one more personal (diary entry like). It began as something to document my life but over time I fell in love with sharing my thoughts and ideas and I liked to hear back from other people.


Now, it’s a whole array of topics including reviews (products, movies, TV shows, books, hauls, recipes, DIYs and my personal favourite, my Thursday Thoughts Series. I also include behind-the-scenes of my youTube channel vlogs. Anything and everything; a lifestyle and beauty blog all rolled into one!

Do you blog full time or do you work as well? How do you juggle your time? Any tips?

I blog part time but I don’t make any money out of it. I’m pretty busy with university study on a packed course so it’s defintely hard to juggle my time but I just write what I want, when I want to. I think that’s key. At the moment, it’s a hobby and when it stops being fun, I’ll stop writing.

What is the best piece of advice you can give to fellow bloggers?

Everyone has a different opinion on everything but don’t let others change the way you think.

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

I love hanging out with family and friends. My favourite activities are bowling, eating out and going to the cinema…all in one day if possible! Usually, I have some downtown before bed and I either spend it catching up on TV, watching a film or reading a book – if I haven’t already exhausted my brain that day!

What are your favourite family activities?

I think being so close to my family, everything can be a family activity. I think my favourite is probably when we play a board game. Yes it usually ends in fights and arguments but that’s where we make the memories.

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

Oh gosh…my favourite place is the Sky Gardens in London which is like an outdoor place but inside. I’m not really a fan of the cold so it’s hard to pick in England but I defintely enjoyed the Yorkshire Sculpture park that I recently went to with my father and of course, every year I’ve been to the Great Yorkshire Show which I LOVE!

A Quick Cuppa With, Hansla, blogger, guest post, interview, Q and A, Living Life Our Way
Yorkshire sculpture park

Best family day out?

I feel like I’ll have more of an idea of this when I have my own family and I honestly can’t wait until I have children of my own. I’ve loved seeing my niece grow up in the 4 short years of her life and I can’t wait to see her little sibling (due June!) growing up right alongside her. I loved when we went to the zoo because she was in awe of the animals and seeing that joy is amazing.

Thank you so much for the opportunity to write in this series. It was so fun to read some of the previous bloggers answers! I would love if you came to visit me on any of my own social media! I hope you all have a great day 🙂

Find Hannah here….

Blog: hansla1000.blogspot.co.uk

Instagram: instagram.com/hansla1000/

Twitter: @hansla1000


YouTube: youtube.com/user/hansla1000

A Quick Cuppa With… Just Average Jen

Hi all, I hope you’re having a good weekend! Today, I have a wonderfully inspirational lady ‘over here’ for a cuppa. She writes a lifestyle and food blog after going on an immense weight loss journey. You should see her before and after pants! (Check out her IG for that!) But before I pass you over to Just Average Jen for our Q&A, I just want to take a mo to say a few things before I forget lol… 

Firstly, I hope you are all enjoying the guest series! Do leave them a little love if you get a mo and/ or hop over to find them on their own sites too. And thank you to everyone who has taken part so far, I love reading about different people!

Secondly, the next cuppa will be this Wednesday rather than Tuesday. Myself and Hansla will be doing a little interview swap too, so my own answers to this Q&A will be published over on her blog then – so fun!

Lastly, please drop me a line if you want to take part in this series; artists, authors, musicians, bloggers, charities, self- employed/ independents… you are all very welcome to take part! I would love for you to get involved!!! Drop me an email on livinglifeourway@outlook.com Thank you 🙂 x

Right, over to the interview…

A Quick Cuppa With, Just Average Jen, weight loss, dieting, fitness, blogger, guest post, interview, Q and A, lifestyle, inspiration

Introduction

I’m Jen, I’m in my 30’s (and even when I am not I will stay that way forever, I really do not want to be 40!!). I live with my partner Stuart and my 11 year old son Ben. We are an average kind of family. My son has special needs which of course does add an extra dimension to life. I am a quite self conscious person and have depression.

Tell me about your blog/ business. What is it, what inspired you etc…

Just Average Jen is a lifestyle and food blog. I started my blog in 2015 after people kept telling me I should write a book or write a blog to share my story. The idea of writing a book scares me a little so I decided to start a blog!

I lost over 10 stone in weight dropping from a whopping size 30 to a size 6-8 by healthy eating since I joined Slimming World. I didn’t do any exercise and lost the first 8 stone of my weight in just 37 weeks. This weight loss has completely changed my life as I am sure you can imagine. So many people say that I am inspiring and look to me for tips and recipes to help with their own weight loss journeys so this is one aspect of my blog. I also talk about running as since I lost my weight I have started running and completed a half marathon and I am planning more races this year too.


My blog doesn’t just cover weight loss and running, it also looks at improving confidence and as such clothes, make up and other ways to become the “real” you. I review items linked to the subjects of my blog, so pretty much anything from food, to household items and clothes to make up with the odd other random item thrown in there too. I am just an average person and my blog aims to come across as that, the girl next door kind of blog about things that affect average women like me!

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

I love to run when the weather is reasonable, I don’t mind when it is a bit chilly or a little wet but I do draw the line and do pick and chose a little when I can! My blog is also something I enjoy doing for me and spend a lot of free time doing.

What is your favourite family activity?

I love playing board games with Stuart and Ben, not because I like board games because to be honest I am not a big fan of them but I love the way they bring our little family together away from electronics for an hour or so just having fun together!

We love outdoors and nature here at Living Life Our Way… What’s your favourite outdoor activity?

On my own I love to run, but as a family my favourite outdoor activity has to be when Stuart and I take Ben to the airport to watch planes taking off and landing. We love walking around there, Ben loves watching the aeroplanes and getting all excited about our next holiday or remembering the previous holiday.

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

I love the River Trent at Gunthorpe bridge not far from me. It is a beautiful place to walk and so very relaxing. I also love going on holiday to Majorca but I guess that doesn’t really count as a place to visit as such.

What’s your favourite animal and why?

I love hedgehogs, they are cute but spikey and I find them intriguing in the way they curl up to protect themselves.

And finally…


Tell me one random fact about yourself.

My waist now measures less than one thigh did when I was at my biggest!

Lastly, is there anything else you are bursting to share with us all?

No, but thank you for letting me share my blog with your readers.

Find out more about Jen and her amazing journey here…

Blog: www.justaveragejen.com

YouTube: www.youtube.com

Facebook: facebook.com/justaveragejen

Twitter: @justaveragejen


Instagram: justaveragejen

A Quick Cuppa… Me, Him, The Dog and A Baby

blogger, A Quick Cuppa With, guest post, interview, Q and A, Living Life Our Way

Tell me about yourself…

I’m Lyndsey, 30 and I live in North Norfolk with my husband, one year old daughter Erin and crazy dog Jackson. I blog over at Me, him, the dog and a baby although I didn’t start off that way. I think I’ve had three blogs before this one, on and off since 2010. I used to be a book blogger but decided to change direction since becoming pregnant with Erin. I certainly don’t have time for anything other than picture books any more!

A Quick Cuppa With, blogger, interview, Q and A, guest post, Living Life Our Way

Who is your biggest inspiration?

My family. Every day they inspire me to work harder and do better at everything.

Tell me about your blog. What is the main theme? What inspired you to start it?

I would describe my blog as a family blog. As you can tell by the name, I write about all members of my family so I can’t class the theme as parenting. I also love to talk about our home and anything we do to it, days out, food and other random topics.


As I said earlier, I used to have a book blog but the time I had to read changed and other things became more important in life. I wanted to write about those things instead!

Do you blog full time or do you work as well? How do you juggle your time? Any tips?

I guess really I should say that I blog part time and work part time. I work three evenings a week in a supermarket as we have no childcare for Erin during the day. I also hated my old job so decided not to go back when my maternity leave ended.


However, I blog A LOT. I generally do something to do with blogging from about 8pm until about midnight on days I don’t work and then for an hour or so a night on the days I do work.

What is the best piece of advice you can give to fellow bloggers?

Don’t compare yourself!! I think it’s really important to blog for you and do it exactly how you want to, especially when it comes to opportunities and paid work. Bloggers can get so caught up in how much other people get paid, me included at times, and can feel pressured to do something they don’t really want to. It also takes all of the fun out of blogging if it causes stress and upset.

How do you relax/ spend your ‘free time’?

I honestly don’t really have much free time. Erin and I spend all day together until I go to work 3 evenings a week. On the evenings I don’t work I still don’t really sit down until about 8pm when Erin goes to bed. This is when I usually start doing anything I need to do for my blog, sometimes until midnight or later. My one thing to relax though is a nice hot bubble bath!

What are your favourite family activities?

My husband probably wouldn’t agree but we love a trip into Norwich for the day. I know he doesn’t like the shopping part of those trips but we do always get to go and have nice food and maybe some Krispy Kreme doughnuts.

Where is your favourite outdoor place to visit?

If I had a choice of somewhere to go outdoors I would always pick the zoo. It doesn’t really matter which zoo it is either. The thing about zoos is that you can walk around them in any weather and still have a good time!

Best family day out?

As Erin is only 1 we don’t go out and do big things too often. However, we went to Banham Zoo recently and we had loads of fun. The food was terrible and that let it down a bit but the zoo and the animals were amazing.

blogger, Q and A, guest post, interview

Read more about their adventures here…

Blog: www.mehimthedogandababy.com

Twitter:@fiction_fan

Facebook: Mehimthedogandababy

Instagram: linzeeloulabelle