When you become a mother you become the Queen of Multi-tasking. Many of you are now nodding your heads in agreement. I have a photo of me loading the washing machine (while standing in the washing basket oddly), whilst brushing my teeth and without any pants on. I was obviously in the process of getting dressed at the same time.
As a writer/photographer/blogger and mother of four children I think I have almost got the multi-tasking thing down pat. And strangely it doesn't involve alcohol!
So how do you keep a blog and keep your kids at bay while you do it?
Pick your moments
Yes, this makes perfect sense, and is the most obvious idea. Blog when your kids are at school, in bed, at their friend's place, or are engrossed in 'Peppa Pig'. Whenever you find is the best time when there are the least distractions is the best time. It will be different for everyone.
Sometimes, however, you can't avoid the distractions of children while you are blogging, particularly if you have really little ones, like I do. I don't like to write in the evenings when my husband is home, because I like to spend what little time he is actually home, hanging out with him. We don't do much. He's normally too buggered to do anything after a day of shearing and often he sleeps while I catch up on reading blogs beside him in bed. Oh the romance!
So instead I spend my blogging time jumping up and down getting drinks and snacks, hunting for lost toys, breaking up fights and changing nappies...and occasionally getting to write something. For example, currently my four year old is insisting that I go on the 'bouncy bounce' with him (the trampoline), which just ain't gonna happen buddy. (just let me finish this sentence)
Ok...bouncy bouncing over.
What was I saying? Oh yes, blogging with kids.
Involve your children
I have actually found that my kids can be quite useful in assisting with the process of my blog. Sometimes they star in photos (although not often, and usually I trim recognisable features of them off...like their heads), and my eldest sometimes acts as my photographer when I need a photo of myself. I also get them to find me props, hold things still for me while I'm trying to do a photo shoot and also make them play the game "Go Stand in the Corner While I do this"...just so they don't destroy my props I have just set up.
Food can be used as a bribe
Ok, so I might deserve the 'bad parent' award here but sometimes it can be useful to make a big bowl of popcorn, stick on a DVD and sit them in front of the television, just so you can get a half hour of peace and quiet. Really, whatever works for you.
Don't expect miracles
Probably the soundest piece of advice I can give is to not expect miracles. Sometimes it just isn't going to work, and if they keep interrupting you it can spell disaster for your chain of thought. And then you just end up writing a big pile of doo doo. Remember, quality over quantity. Luckily I don't suffer from 'thought interruption problems', and as I write for a magazine I do get used to having to work around my kids, particularly to a deadline, but if you just can't then you need to try and not get too frustrated and come back to it later. I know...easier said than done, but you might be able to sneak in an hour after they have gone to bed or even get up a bit earlier before the little monsters get up. Unfortunately I find that impossible, I'm not a morning person and treasure every last second of sleep but maybe that could work for you.
How do you blog and around your kids?