Featured: Happy Mother’s Day to Me on Ten Thousand Hour Mama

Featured: Happy Mother’s Day to Me on Ten Thousand Hour Mama

How was your Mother’s Day? I hope you either spent some time being pampered or pampering someone you call mom. I had a lovely day, even if nearly the whole family has come down sick. It was nice both getting some alone time and getting some time with my boys.

I got to spend the day with my lovely mother-in-law who will never truly know how much I appreciate her. She is a wonderful mother-in-law and fabulous grandma, but the fact that she was (and still is) a fantastic momma to her own kids led to me having a husband who is kind and giving, a wonderful partner and parent.

I missed a few mommas and had to phone in my happy wishes for the day. I have had the good fortune of having a friend in my own mother and wonderful examples of mothers in my grandmothers. I think it took having children, or perhaps finally get to a certain age, to truly understand all that the mothers in my life have done. I hope that the way I live my life, the choices I make and the work I do is a good reflection of the work that they put into me.

My Mother’s Day Gift to Myself

This year I participated in a little “Mother’s Day Gift to Myself” series that I really enjoyed, not only writing, but reading throughout the weeks coming up to mother’s day. It really got me thinking on the subject and I felt a little bit more like I appreciated myself and this chapter of my life.

Check out my story about a recent moment with my son when he asked me, “Mom, do you get a prize when your reach 100?”

Happy Mother’s Day to Me: My 100 year old birthday prize

Happy Birthday to A Well Crafted Party

Happy Birthday to A Well Crafted Party

Today my TimeHop app reminded me that it is a very special day for this blog… it’s our birthday!

Six years ago today I finished my blog designed, purchased www.awellcraftedparty.com and set up everything to publish my very first blog post on April 27, 2010.

A Blog Six Years Later

Six years! Holy cow. In the last six years I’ve published 853 blog posts with 2,471 comments and approximately 400,000 page views. I started the blog before kids were even really in our minds. I started it to be solely a party blog featuring my parties and DIY party items. It has evolved to be such a wonderful avenue for me to connect with people. It now is a lifestyle blog—still with plenty of party emphasis to fulfill that personal need— about everything from DIY tutorials to motherhood.

I feel so grateful for this blog and what it has brought into my life. I’ve made some of my best friends through this blog. My sons have been announced and celebrated here. I’ve experienced some seriously amazing experiences— such as this dinner at Urban Farmer— restaurants, locations and brands. I was able to stay home with my first son for the first two years of his life because of A Well Crafted Party. I owe my current job to the work that I did on this blog. I’m pretty sappy about it all really.

In honor of the big birthday, I thought I’d share some of my favorite (and your favorite) blog posts over the years:

Most Pinned Post – Amaretto Sour

My recipe for a classic Amaretto Sour is the top pinned post of my blog and is currently the top visited post. All I can say is my readers have great tastes because the Amaretto Sour is both delicious and EASY to make!

 

Most Popular Download – Free Printable Blog Planner

Hands down the most popular download I have on my site (and I have a lot) is the free printable Blog Planner. I love writing about blogging and working with other bloggers so much that I run (with a lot of help from the leadership team) a local blogging resource and community called Portland Bloggers. This printable was an idea that happened because of this passion around four years ago and I keep refining it and adding to it year over year.

 

 

very first blog banner for A Well Crafted Party

My very first blog banner…

Blog Design

My blog has changed designs quite a few times over the years… I’m already itching to change things up again! After my last redesign I really went through my past designs and my new goals for the blog. It is one of my favorite posts and often one that people stumble upon when looking for blog design ideas.

 

Hey Girl Party

 

Favorite Parties

I really, really can’t pick a FAVORITE party because there are so many that I like. I’ve done a lot of styled shoots over the years— and I feel so fortunate to be able to do that— but, real parties are where my heart is because I want people to get to enjoy an experience.

  • The Hey Girl Party will always be a favorite because it was such a fun theme and because it was for a dear friend.
  • My son’s second birthday party was a town-themed party where we created an entire town out of cardboard. Friends pitched in and helped to make it AMAZING.
  • I’ve had the opportunity to work with great brands that I’d never in a million  years think I’d have the opportunity to do. This tapas party with Whole Foods was such fun to help create!

Series on Working in Motherhood

 

I get to share people’s stories and write about things that matter to me.

I am pretty sappy right now about my blog and what this little space means to me. Part of that is that I have a space where I get to share about things that matter to me and that I think might matter to my readers. One great example of that is getting to write about working mothers. It means so much to me and I know it means a lot to the women out there that come across these stories while struggling with their own journey in working in motherhood.

thank you

Thank you for being a part of this party! Like great wines, this is only getting better with age!

I so appreciate you taking the time to read and share this blog. You’re awesome.

Image credits: Header, Featured and Working Moms Images by www.mommabearmag.com | Balloons Image by www.momentsbymacey.com | All other images by me unless otherwise noted

Free Printable Blog Planner 2016 Edition

Free Printable Blog Planner 2016 Edition

Have you made your goals for 2016 yet? I know that some of you had because before the New Year came around I had several requests for the 2016 free printable blog planner— bloggers ready to get started making their 2016 goals happen! So, I finished up the updates and sent them out to A Well Crafted Newsletter subscribers on January 1. So, I guess I got my very first goal of the year checked off the list. Woohoo!

So, with no further ado… the 2016 Free Printable Blog Planner is ready for download! Read on to see what is included and to sign up for your free printable. If you are already a subscriber, search your email for the Free Printable Blog Planner.

Build Your Ideal Blogging Planner

First, this is a “build your own” style of planner. The reason I chose this style of planner is because one does not fit all in the blogging world. Some bloggers blog multiple times a month, others blog once a week. Some bloggers are hobby bloggers and don’t need pages of financial planning while others use their blogs as a business and welcome a little financial organization. The pages included in this planner all coordinate with one another. Pick and choose which pages will make the perfect planner for you. If you are just looking for one quick download then I also have a planner built into a PDF that is a fairly complete and general planner. You just need to download and print!

Free Printable Blog Planner from A Well Crafted Party

There are over 41 different planning worksheets to help you build your ideal planner, including:

Blog Brainstorming Worksheets:

  • Blog Resolutions
  • Focus Your Blog Worksheet
  • Post Brainstorming Worksheet
  • Year of Ideas Worksheet

Organization Tools:

  • Affiliate Program Tracker
  • Finance Tracker
  • Pitch Minder
  • Project Budget Worksheet
  • Sponsor Tracker
  • Collaboration Tracker
  • Stylesheet Worksheet
  • Password Tracker
  • Analytics Tracker
  • Social Media Platform Tracker NEW!
  • Monthly Income Report NEW!
  • Post Maintenance Worksheet NEW!
  • Weekly Blog Maintenance Worksheet NEW!
  • Monthly Blog Maintenance Worksheet NEW!
  • Year in Review Worksheet NEW!

Calendar Planners:

(Note: I keep all my planners without dates listed on them so that they can be used at anytime. I always hated it when I had some bad months and didn’t use a dated planner and then had to simply throw it out when I hit a new year!)

  • Month at a Glance Planner  (List)
  • Monthly Blog Post Planner (Calendar View)
  • Weekly Blog Planner (7 Days)
  • Three Posts Weekly Planner (3 Days)
  • Three Posts Daily Planner (For those over-achievers out there or large blogs out there)
  • Single Post Planner
  • Social Media Planner NEW!

Covers:

(Last year’s version of covers had some typos! YUK. I’ve revised the covers.)

  • 2016 Blog Planner Cover
  • Plan the Work, Work the Plan
  • Money, Money, Money
  • January 2016
  • February 2016
  • March 2016
  • April 2016
  • May 2016
  • June 2016
  • July 2016
  • August 2016
  • September 2016
  • October 2016
  • November 2016
  • December 2016

Free Printable Blog Planner 2016 Edition

What’s new?

Each year I go through and modify pages from the previous years and adding new pages as I see fit. I fixed some mistakes on the 2015 edition and made a couple of the sheets more user-friendly. In addition, I added in several new worksheets, including:

  • Monthly Income Report — I find monthly income reports SO inspiring. This past few months I’ve been tracking my own monthly income and find these worksheets incredibly helpful.
  • Post Maintenance Worksheet— Earlier this year my newsletter subscribers received a file with my Blog Maintenance Worksheets. I edited the version to coordinate with the blog planner and have included it in this year’s planning downloads. These worksheets are perfect for using over and over again by slipping into a binder sleeve and using a dry erase pen.
  • Weekly Blog Maintenance Worksheet— Earlier this year my newsletter subscribers received a file with my Blog Maintenance Worksheets. I edited the version to coordinate with the blog planner and have included it in this year’s planning downloads. These worksheets are perfect for using over and over again by slipping into a binder sleeve and using a dry erase pen.
  • Monthly Blog Maintenance Worksheet— Earlier this year my newsletter subscribers received a file with my Blog Maintenance Worksheets. I edited the version to coordinate with the blog planner and have included it in this year’s planning downloads. These worksheets are perfect for using over and over again by slipping into a binder sleeve and using a dry erase pen.
  • Year in Review Worksheet— This new worksheet is a great way to reflect over the past  year and will help you in planning out your next year. I’d print one to fill out for 2015 and one to put at the end of your binder for next year!
  • Social Media Tracker— Keep all your social media information in one convenient place with this Social Media Tracker.
  • Social Media Planner— This is another one that I released earlier in the year, but not with the 2015 planner. Track your social media goals and make a loose plan for your social media postings.

** Thinking about starting a blog, but unsure of the steps? Check out my post on starting a self-hosted blog!***

Want to access your free printable blog planner downloads? Subscribe to the Well Crafted Newsletter below:

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