Notebook

La Petite Peach_How tomake time for yourself 1

Lately, I have been going non-stop shuffling kids around, slinging dinners, and trying to keep my house (sort of) clean that I completely forgot about…myself. Us moms know we need a break, but never actually take the time to make it happen. My husband was away last week and I literally feel like I didn’t have time to breathe, I have been exhausted. On Saturday, all I wanted to do was sleep in but instead I pealed myself out of bed and I had some “me” time.  I went to a Barre class and then picked up coffee and a magazine. After I got home I relaxed in my living room chair and read before even telling anyone I was home. I briefly thought about how nice this moment was and how I can do it more often. Finding time for me isn’t easy but I thought my action list might help you work some alone time into your schedule as well.

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  1. Ask for help: I never, ever ask my husband if I can take off for the morning because I assume he will say he would be overwhelmed with all three kids at once. So silly! I mentioned getting up early to work out and he didn’t even bat an eye lash. Sometimes all you have to do is ask, and all you need is an hour or two of alone time to feel new again.
  2. Think ahead: Schedule in some “me” time via your ical or calendar and then stick to it. Even if you don’t know what you will do during your alone time, schedule it anyways! Giving your partner a heads up you need a few hours to recharge will help them prep for kid chaos (oh is that just at my house?).
  3. Brain storm your perfect day: If you had a few hours alone without kids, what would you do? Go work out ? Or take a bath, go shopping, grab breakfast at a cafe? Whatever it is, brain storming what that day would be like is motivation to make it happen.
  4. Make a trade: Ask a good friend if they want to do a trade! You will watch their kids for two hours while she takes some time for herself and then in return she watches your kids on another day so you can do the same. When my kids have other children to play with, then they completely entertain themselves and I can get things done around the house. It can be a win/win!
  5. Make the commitment: Instead of feeling bad that you never get to do things that you enjoy, make the commitment make time for yourself and stick to it. Don’t back out. Beyond scheduling “me” time, make the commitment to your well-being to 2-3 hours (even once a month) to dedicate to you, and only you. Do something that you really love!

I hope these tips inspire you to do the things that you love, for yourself, and on your own time. It’s so important that we all foster our hobbies, loves, and give ourselves some self-care. I would love to know how you all spend your time when you aren’t with the kids. Let me know on Instagram or Facebook!

Wesleigh’s Dress by Marie Chantal and Photography by First Mate Photo

La Petite Peach_10 Summer Reads

You guys, these are my old and new favorites for summer reading! I know you are going to be as obsessed with them as I am…and I even added one that is coming out soon that I can’t wait to dive into while sipping ice coffee on the beach. BUT I would LOVE to know what you are reading, so please comment below or let me know over on Facebook or Instagram! You can shop these favorites by clicking on the images or links below. Enjoy!

1. I Feel Bad About My Neck 2. Tap the Magic Tree 3. Not that Kind of Girl 4. Bluebird 5. Me Talk Pretty One Day 6. The Garden of Eden 7. Gift from the Sea 8. Villa America 9. Summertime in the Big Woods 10. Is It Evil Not To Be Sure?

Currently in FASHION

La Petite Peach_Baby Gifts

Best Gifts for Babies

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Calisson Little Royals

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Summer Denim

La Petite Peach_5 ways to grow your instagram 1
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Here are my best tips for keeping your Instagram game strong and cultivating a community.

1. Consistency: I post on Instagram 1-2 times a day. But more importantly I share at night or first thing in the morning.  The reason I do this is because I am more consistently than not, speaking to mothers, and when do mothers have time to be online? First thing in the morning and then after the kiddos go to sleep at night. I actually discovered this information through a site called Iconosquare. When you sign up it calculates your Instagram analytics (you can do a free trial) so that you know when your audience is the most engaged and what content they are engaged in. This really helps with consistency so that your followers are seeing your posts when they are online.

*Consistency also means keeping the look across the board the same as well. Maybe you love only black and whites or maybe you do more blue tones and then every 3rd picture has pink tones. It doesn’t matter what it is, as long as it is consistent so your followers know what to expect.

I really like what these Instagrammers are doing…

The Dean Hotel

Design Love Fest

Being Boss Club

ZHours

Sophie Vine

Minikin

Stella Maria Baer

Amy Stone

Jo Rogers

2. Quality: Taking pictures with your camera isn’t completely necessary, I do think some Iphone pictures come out just as nice. More than 50%  of my Instagram photos are from my phone. If you are going to take them with your phone make sure you are editing them before you post. I use VSCO, Prime, Color Story and Photoshop to edit my photos before posting them. If anything at all, use the “clarity” function on any of these apps to avoid fuzzy/blurry photos. Which leads me to…

3. Color and Clarity: Your photos should always be really clear. It can be really hard for people to connect to an image they can’t see very well. There is such a thing as “over editing” them where they don’t even look real anymore. If you are going to use a filter make sure you are not compromising the image. You can “up” the clarity on any of the apps above but I also suggest you use the “brightening” function. Studies have shown that people “like” a photo with cooler or blue tones.

4. Remember your Top 9: You should always be sharing your best photos! However, look at your top 9 images, that is what people will see when they come to your Instagram. Do those 9 photos reflect you, your style and what you want to say/put out into the world? If they do then amazing! If not, brain storm what your core message is and how you can use images to convey that message.

5. Community: Cultivate your community and keep them engaged. Ask your followers questions or advice and offer them advice as well.  Most importantly ALWAYS respond to their questions, comments or concerns. Not following up is like never responding to a text message, it would be super rude and leaves the person feeling pretty bad.

Bonus: Yes, I think you should plan out your Instagrams. I don’t think you need to plan weeks or even days in advance but I think you should have an idea of what you want to share at least 24 hours ahead. A great tool that I use is Planoly. It allows me to schedule my Instagrams but also see how my feed looks with the scheduled post.

*bonus #2 A few times a year I hire or do a trade with a photographer friend to help me capture images that I know are beyond my learning level. Like above! This photo is by First Mate Photo! Make sure to always credit the photographer though if you are posting to social media, photographers like that:)

*bonus #3 There is a ton of fuss over whether or not to use hashtags. I DO use applicable hashtags and I do think they help!