Take Your Photography Skills to the Next Level

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of ZTE Grand X Max 2 for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

Raise your hand if you take a million pictures of your children? (Raises hand) Well, I’ve come across this awesome phone!!! There are so many milestones happening on a day to day basis. It’s important to have a reliable phone with a high quality camera to capture those special first days of school and first games.

I’m not super technical or a professional photographer but I like my photos, especially ones of my child to be good looking.

The ZTE Grand X Max 2 from cricket wireless does a great job at that and at an affordable price. Phones & tablets are getting pricier by the minute and finding something that has great quality, delivers a solid performance and doesn’t drain your wallet isn’t easy.

Now everyone can have access to that, the ZTE Grand X Max 2 delivers exceptional entertainment and photography capabilities as well as excellent value.

This phone or “phablet” features:

  • A large 6′ FHD LCD Display
  • Wide angle front camera and dual rear camera as well as a bokeh effect(The aesthetic quality of the blur produced in the out-of-focus parts of an image produced by a lens) setting, which I personally find way cool.
  • Dolby Audio and Hi-Fi Music
  • High powered LTE smartphone running android Marshmallow Operating System  for a great quality streaming.

Budget Friendly! 

Cricket Wireless offers customers easy and affordable plans starting at $35/mo after $5 AutoPay credit, with monthly taxes and fees included.

Cricket Wireless has a great selection of phones customers love, and a reliable 4G LTE network with more coverage than T-Mobile, Metro PCS, Sprint and Boost.

If you’re an existing Cricket customer, the ZTE Grand X Max 2 is available for purchase for $169.99 at cricketwireless.com and Cricket Wireless authorized retail locations.

If you are not an existing Cricket customer, they currently have a great deal! Customers bringing their number to Cricket can buy the ZTE Grand X Max 2 for $129!!!

Head on over to Cricketwireless.com for more details or to Locate a Cricket Wireless authorized retail location.

Thanks for reading!

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Disclaimer: Buy ZTE Grand X Max 2 for $129, port number to Cricket and activate a new qualified plan, minimum $40 per month. Fees, other charges & restrictions apply. See store for details.

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How To Start A Blog – The Do’s & Dont’s of Blogging

So you’ve been wondering How to start a blog but have yet to pull the trigger.

I’m here to help you out with some tips on what to do and what not to do.  I’ve been blogging now for two and half years and I’ve been able to get some decent income out of my blog although I’m an on and off blogger.

If extra income isn’t what you are looking for, this isn’t the post for you. If income is what you are looking to ultimately reach with your blog, lets talk strategy.

Let’s start with the DO’s of blogging to get you going fast.

If you are looking for income then there’s only one way to go, and that means you should be on a self-hosted blog. What does that mean? It means you own your content. You are paying to have your site up on the web. My blog is hosted on blue host and so far I have nothing but good things to say about them. You can start your own blog by signing up here or click on the banner below, with paid hosting you’ll get a free domain name.


DO choose a niche

A niche is a subject you’ll be writing about, it can be about knitting, cats, airplanes… You name it. Some niches are more popular than others but popular niches are also over saturated because it’s a common theme.

DO write in your own voice.

Everyone that wants to write can write, but only you can write like you. There are countless of blog posts about how to start a blog on the Internet from all different points of views. This is not a novel idea, write in your own voice.

DO create a catchy blog name.

Blog name (i.e. Domain Name) You don’t want something too long or too short but something unique to your niche. You want something that your readers can easily remember.

You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to know how to start a blog, I mean… I did it…. I’m no rocket scientist. But it does get rather confusing down the line if you don’t start the “right” way.

I started on a free platform, then purchased my own domain name, then I switched over to self-hosted. It took me a long time to do that because it does get a little technical and who has time for that? But I bit the bullet and signed up for a self-hosted blog.

If you just want to write as a hobby, than feel free to start on a free hosting site like blogger.com (which is how I started) or WordPress.com

If creating an income for yourself is what you are looking for then definitely self-host.

Now on to the DON’Ts

Do NOT sign up for a free blog if you plan on earning income from your blog.

Why? Because you don’t own your blog and it can be taken down any minute for whatever reason. I never had that problem but I heard of big bloggers that had that happen to them. So start right!

DO NOT take it lightly.

When I started I had no clue what I was doing, I just wanted to write.  I would read other bloggers posts and that’s about it. Blogging is hard work, it takes commitment and a lot of self discipline. No one is forcing you to write, you don’t have a boss breathing down your neck. You are in charge of it all, you are your own boss… You little business owner you.

DO NOT post half-assed blog posts.

Pardon my French but if you intend for people to follow you and read your content be ready to provide them with good quality information. People like well-written posts and good quality photos. Everyone has something they are good at. Maybe you are fabulous at multi-tasking, maybe you rocked breastfeeding (not me). Listen, I know it can be a daunting task, you might say I can’t do it and I’m here to tell you can.

There is certainly a learning curve, but you CAN do it. You can bring in some income to help support your family or support your Starbucks habit. Whatever your reason might be there’s always space for your voice.

Share your expertise!

These are not all the DO’s and DON’Ts of blogging but will certainly get you thinking. Is blogging right for you? Are you passionate about a certain topic? Then start writing. 

You’ve already decided you want to start a blog? Have a blog name in mind? See below if your blog name is available.

If you want more help & support. You can join my Facebook group, there we share tips on blogging and income strategies. There is so much more to blogging if you really want to get technical, but this will give blog will you give you a basic understanding of how to start a blog.

Than you so much for reading and if you have any questions, be sure to write them in the comments below.

 

*This post contains affiliate links. Everything I’ve linked to is something I recommend and use). I earn a small commission if you purchase anything through my links that helps me earn an income and keep this blog running. 

Books I’m Reading & Recommend

For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards by Jen Hatmaker
The Absorbent Mind by Maria Montessori
Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom by Pamela Druckerman

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What I Miss Most About My Pre-Mom Life

The other day I joined some other moms for a mom to mom chat on Instagram . We had a really open and introspective conversation about motherhood and our pre-mom life. We were to ask a general motherhood question and the question I brought up in the chat was—

” What I miss most about my pre-mom life? “

We got some really interesting answers!

It’s not our pre-mom body (although it would be nice). It was an answer that I think a lot of moms can relate to. I say this with confidence that most moms would agree that our time is what we desperately miss about our pre-mom life.

Oh time, why did  I forsake you in my teenage years? In my early twenties!!!

George Bernard Shaw was correct when he said Youth is wasted on the young, not that I’m old or anything. I’m still in my early thirties but when I think back on all the time I had available and how sometimes I would complain about how little time I had?  So foolish. I guess we can also add that Time is wasted on the Young.

The flexibility of life of a non-parent is something that most people will only acknowledge once they have actually had children. And oh boy! It will hit you like a ton of bricks when you realize you can’t use the bathroom without an audience being present, possibly commenting.

Sure you can make time for yourself as a parent, and you definitely should but it’s just not the same. You HAVE to make time.

All of your little “freedoms” get taken away and you live for the ankle biters. My kiddo “tells” me when it’s a good time to go grocery shopping, when to shower, when to sleep or not or when to eat, when it’s a good time to make a phone call (side note: there’s never a good time to get on an important call with a toddler. EVER)

youth is wasted on the young pre mom life

Not because he actually has control over me but because their needs come first. In a sense he does, because if you are not sensitive to their emotions it’s going to blow up in your face. Their sleep comes first mostly because cranky babies, toddlers and children aren’t something I’d like to deal with in the middle of the supermarket or anywhere.

Yes, tantrums sometimes happens anyways. But a well-rested & well-fed child is less likely misbehave (for a period of time, probably shorter then you think). That’s where the decision making comes into play. What task/errand is most important? Is going to the market right now worth the possible tantrum? Maybe not, maybe tomorrow will be a better day or maybe you are at their golden hour (well-slept & fed). Then go on mama! Hit the road!

So when do we get time to ourselves? Technically we don’t, we can choose to not do something else and use that time for ourselves. But keep in mind you’ll just have to  A: do what you were supposed to be quicker B: Not do it all.

If you are not yet a mom or dad or is expecting for the first time, please do take some time to yourself. If you are planning on getting pregnant, this would also be a great time to the those things you’ve always wanted to sans baby. Parenthood is tough, it’s exhausting and you don’t get breaks.

Is it worth it? Of course it is. But with everything that is worth something comes a lot of sacrifice, hard work and perseverance. You have to be ready and willing to deal with the demands of tiny human beings.

I miss my pre-mom life but I wouldn’t change being a mom for anything.

Thanks for stopping in!

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Book Recommendations:

*These are affiliate links, by purchasing through the links below you help me keep up with costs associated with running a blog at no additional cost to you. Thanks in advance!

1.For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards by Jen Hatmaker
2.The Absorbent Mind by Maria Montessori
3.Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom by Pamela Druckerman
4.Praying Circles Around Your Children by Mark Batterson
5.Motherhood Realized: An Inspiring Anthology for the Hardest Job You’ll Ever Love by Power of Moms

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Caring for Baby’s Sensitive Skin

“This post was sponsored by WaterWipes as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.”

I’ve never once worried about chemicals before I got pregnant and I definitely wasn’t aware of skin-to-skin contact with mom and dad. Although that care free world was less stressful, I can’t imagine not reading labels today. I’m more laid back with the things I personally use, but I am adamant in using natural products with my son. Children’s skins are incredibly sensitive, especially babies and having the right product for their skin is something worth talking about.

I am grateful to have known about the importance of skin-to-skin contact while pregnant, but it certainly is eye-opening when you watch such videos as the one below for the WaterWipes #PureLove campaign.

waterwipes review

It’s safe to say how influential our bodies are to our babies and how essential keeping babies sensitive skin chemical-free.

If you have some tissues at hand or WaterWipes, please grab some before watching this video.

 

Chemical free products are good for anyone, but especially for growing little bodies.  I’m in the process of kinda potty training my toddler (with no success, I think I’m doing it wrong lol) and I think I’m using more wipes now than I have ever. Let’s say there has been a few accidents. I’m impressed with how WaterWipes can handle these messes without me having to add chemicals to my son’s delicate skin.

WaterWipes are made with just water (specially purified and softened) and grapefruit seed extract, hypoallergenic so it won’t irritate baby’s skin. To top it off, WaterWipes has been awarded the National Eczema Association Seal of Acceptance.

waterwipes

Bringing a new baby in the world is hard enough, we shouldn’t also have to worry about what our baby wipes have in them. WaterWipes is a no-brainer for any parent with a newborn or a rambunctious toddler like myself (and the occasional furniture cleaning, yeah, we use wipes for pretty much anything around here).

Give WaterWipes a try, you won’t regret it. #PureLove I’m a #WaterWipesMom

Like this post? Let an expecting or seasoned mom or dad know about the importance of skin-to-skin contact and using WaterWipes. Want to connect with WaterWipes? Check out their Facebook Page, twitter or visit their website for more information and where you can find a retailer near you.

Thanks so much for reading!

young-love-mommy-blog

Looking for your next book to read?

*These are affiliate links, by purchasing through the links below you help me keep up with costs associated with running a blog at no additional cost to you. Thanks in advance!

1.For the Love: Fighting for Grace in a World of Impossible Standards by Jen Hatmaker
2.The Absorbent Mind by Maria Montessori
3.Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom by Pamela Druckerman
4.Praying Circles Around Your Children by Mark Batterson
5.Motherhood Realized: An Inspiring Anthology for the Hardest Job You’ll Ever Love by Power of Moms

If you enjoyed this post, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter & Pinterest for more goodies.

Could you please do me a favor? Click on the banner below to vote for my blog, it would help me immensely.

Vote for me @ Top Mommy Blogs - Mom Blog Directory

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Caring For Baby's skin

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