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June 3, 2017 at 7:00 am by Angela

Yes, you read correctly – this a post about why I took my laptop away with me on holiday (in this case a long weekend break to Woburn Center Parcs) rather than leave it at home. It feels a little counter-intuitive I’m sure since holidays are supposed to be a time for taking a break. But if you give me a second to explain then you’ll see that is exactly the reason why I chuck (/ carefully slip in a travel case and pack securely in a rucksack) my old faithful MacBook Air in my luggage when we head away.


My writing view on our last weekend break.

As all and every blogger knows well, if you want other people to get to know your blog and read you stuff then you have to give back. So a significant proportion of ‘Blogging Time’ is actually spent reading posts written by other bloggers and commenting on them. I enjoy reading material from other bloggers; I learn from them, they inspire me to try new things, make me feel less alone and keep me motivated to write. Many of them also take the time to read what I write. So when I join a linky party (which I do regularly) I feel it’s common courtesy to make sure I get at least the minimum reads done – if not more – within a few days. On an average day, when you throw in the normal home and work commitments, it usually means that the one thing that gets neglected is my blog, or more specifically my writing.

BloggingTime

I can’t force myself to write unless my head is in the right place. I’m sure most of you have experienced the feeling of ‘fuzzy brain’ where you sit down to type and nothing comes out. That’s me in the evening once the washing-up is done and I’ve done my linky comments. I can just about manage my monthly feature posts, but the ones that a bit more thoughtful just don’t come when I’m worn from the day. Instead I find thoughts starting to flow at inopportune moments like when I’m driving or getting ready for bed. That’s simply because at those moments, my brain is free from processing the lists of chores and tasks it has to deal with every day. But I don’t have my laptop to hand at those times…


My Center Parcs workspace!

So when we go away, I get to take an extended break from those chores: from the washing, from the cooking, from the continue tidying-up*. (*Within reason – I do still have a toddler!) I also take a break from linkys and promoting my blog. My brain and body relax. The thoughts and reflections on life come more naturally and, for once, I am usually not too tired to process them. So when naptime or early evening rolls around, I find myself eager to tap away at my keyboard and get them out of my head. On this recent holiday to Center Parcs I have spent both naptimes happily sat in the lodge as Sam and his parents go and partake in activities. I have listened to some tunes and just let the words flow. It’s been truly wonderful. So next time we go away, I suspect my shiny bit of tech will slip into my rucksack once again! I just need to figure out how to replicate the conditions at home now.

How do you get your best writing done? Any tips for getting in the right frame of mind to write at home when there is so much else to do?

This post was voted number 1 by readers of the Family Fun linky on 14 June 2017 and was also awarded Feature post status on the Sharing the Blog Love linky:
 
Two Tiny Hands   Dear Bear and Beany
This post has been linked-up to some of the amazing linkys below:

Tammymum  

3 Little Buttons   Mummuddlingthrough

My Petit Canard   Dear Bear and Beany
 
Posted in Mum Life
 
Tags: #BlogCrush, #CoolMumClub, #DreamTeam, #FamilyFun, #fortheloveofBLOG, #MarvMondays, #SharingTheBlogLove, Blogging, Holiday, Peace, Quiet, Work, Writing,
 
Some comments:
  1. Looks like you have a good schedule going. I love the sincereity you have toward your linkys. I save my reading and replies for Sundays.
    Alas! All my writing has to be squeezed in between naps and after bed times. I get so exhausted at the end of the day, that I barely have time to do much anyway. Still, I try to write whenever I can or at least start a draft post and jot down whatever is streaming into my brain in that moment – sometimes these make for complete posts, other times, I’ll just work on them at some other time (which with two littles makes them dated if I got back weeks later)…oh well…mama time is too precious. Needs to be divided and distributed all around. #SharingtheBlogLove
    Suchitra recently posted…Sometimes the Papad has to breakMy Profile

    • I completely relate to the time challenge. It sometimes feels weird to post something which is weeks or months ‘old’ but in reality readers don’t know. I enjoy reading your posts whenever you manage to get them written down – quality over quantity and all that! Thanks for reading xx

  2. Center Parcs is an inspiring space – why wouldn’t you want to write there? I find that the best posts I do are the spontaneous ones and ideally, I’d need to capture them quickly so taking a laptop isn’t really a bad idea! #DreamTeam
    Our Cherry Tree recently posted…Review – Alton TowersMy Profile

    • Yes, I think I have lost a few posts because I just can’t get the words down in time. You’re right the spontaneous ones are the best! Thanks for reading x

  3. I keep having writers block recently, I am trying to get the balance of everything right and grow my blog more. I do find the writing is easier if I don’t try and just do it on my phone whilst at soft play of just chilling with the kids. I can sit for hours and achieve nothing if I start a post from scratch on the laptop. I get far more done working from a draft I created on my phone whilst day dreaming. #DreamTeam
    Lisa (mumdadplus4) recently posted…Hotter Sandals – The Awesome New Summer RangeMy Profile

    • That sounds like a wise idea. Sometimes the ideas come best when you are in the midst of parenting! I perhaps need to try and capture more outlines on my phone… Thanks for reading x

  4. I’m totally with you that sometimes the inspiration and the writing ideas can come at odd moments. When I was recently away I loved the fact that my mind could be filled with blogging ideas because that meant I wasnt thinking about school runs, getting to work, stressy meetings, cooking, cleaning and the whole world of ‘normal life’.
    Mainy
    #FamilyFunLinky
    mainy recently posted…Fun and Fabulous Food in AlcudiaMy Profile

    • Normal life is excessively consuming isn’t it! The number of blog posts that come to me in the shower…which are then lost to the ether by the time I’m drying my hair. Thanks for reading xx

    • Yeh, sometimes it’s nice to have the space to do your own thing but just sit together in the peace! Thanks for reading xx

  5. I’m struggling with finding the right time now, I’ve lost my precious 2 hour nap times down to mostly nothing and at the end of the day especially now I’m too exhausted to write. I love my linky and reading the bloggers who link up each week and now find this is pretty much all I have time for! Alas, things will change when I want them too for now I’m happy slacking and existing!! ‪Thank you for linking up to the #familyfunlinky‬
    Karen | TwoTinyHands recently posted…Rain Rain Go Away #FamilyFunLinkyMy Profile

    • Oh I will get so much less done when I finally lose ‘the nap’ so I can appreciate how it must be a challenge for you. I also don’t blame you for just enjoying doing whatever you want. I have really embraced that a bit more recently and just done what I want rather than feeling the need write just because. Thanks for reading x

  6. I’m attached to my laptop. I have a work laptop for my job and it comes everywhere with me, I even have my emails on my phone. I’m a nightmare for checking emails even when on hols! I’m frightened I’m gonna miss something.
    Back when my blog was of bigger importance to me, I’d take it everywhere with me then just in case I wanted to write. Now I just can’t be arsed!! #coolmumclub

    • That’s good that you’ve reached a place of balance though. I’m pretty good at not checking work emails when I’m out of the office but it is definitely too tempting with smartphones being within arms reach! Thanks for reaching x

  7. It’s an interesting angle – you have described it so well I totally get it. There is so much to do with blogging that the writing part can get lost, so a life admin and blogmin holiday sounds the perfect time to get creative.
    Thanks for sharing with #coolmumclub
    MMT recently posted…#coolmumclub Linky week 68My Profile

    • I have barely written anything since we’ve got back from that weekend so it definitely worked! Thanks for reading xx

  8. I am totally with you on this. I write best when I am relaxed, and actually I blog on holiday because I enjoy blogging and writing in general. The blog-min is the stuff I take a break from too, but writing is very much a part of my holidays. Holidays are for indulging in yourself, your interests, and being a bit selfish. #fortheloveofBLOG
    Aleena recently posted…Nurturing Interests: When Is It Too Soon?My Profile

    • That’s good to hear. It’s reassured me I’m not a but crazy! I genuinely really enjoyed having the space to do it and you’re so right that it’s totally right to indulge a hobby on holiday. I’ll be doing it again for certain! Thanks for your fab comment xx

    • I think you have to be quite disciplined with it else you could end up just doing admin again. But it’s definitely worth it if you can tell your mind to focus!

    • I have tried using a notebook too but never manage to finish. I should try that again. It’s great that you have a way to write – I think that’s the most important thing! Thanks for reading x

  9. This is the perfect setting and timing to do some blog writing. I’m a little bit jealous 🙂 It can be hard to find that head space to really sit down and get the words out. I have Thursday mornings where both my girls are at school and preschool. This is my writing time and I’m very protective over it. Thank you for joining us at #SharingtheBlogLove

    • I’m not sure I’ve managed any proper writing since :s I can definitely see why you protect your Thursday mornings. I need to be a little more selfish about naptime again! Thanks for reading x

  10. I totally get this. I always take my laptop or iPad away with us , largely for he reasons you state. I haven’t taken a break without it yet. But I am sure I will when I want to. Holidays are what you want them to be and if some you time of the laptop is what will make you enjoy it more then I am all for it. Thanks for joining us at #familyfun

    • Yes, I think it’s all good as long as you don’t feel obliged to take it and use it! Thanks for reading lovely x

    • Yeh I can see your perspective when your blog is your business. I would absolutely leave it at home if I were in the same position! Thanks for reading xx

  11. I also struggle keeping on top of commenting, and like you I like to give the comment love back. I find ideas coming when I’m doing the mundane things – washing up, sat at the beach watching the kids play. Driving as well seems to be the time for ideas to pop into my head too. #sharingthebloglove

    • I’ve tried voice dictating posts before (well before my daughter could talk and disrupt them) but that didn’t really work either. I guess it has to be scribbled notes and reliance on memory then – eeek! Thanks for reading xx

    • Yeh my husband didn’t get out either but just ignored it as long as it doesn’t affect the overall family or couple experience! Thanks for commenting xx

  12. I think you have to write whenever the feeling takes you. For me personally, a holiday is just that. I don’t blog, I don’t write, I just relax and enjoy not having to worry about all of that. But I do take a note pad and pen and any ideas I have I jot down so I can write them when I get home! Thank you for joining us at #sharingthebloglove
    five little doves recently posted…It’s okay to be afraid….My Profile

  13. I loved reading this, because do you know what, I took my laptop to Center Parcs Woburn that very same weekend, and I posted every day. It was so nice to write with a glass of wine in the evening. I also could have taken that very same picture with my laptop on the table, and the bikes outside. Hope you had a fab weekend at Woburn, we loved it! Thanks so much for linking up at #fortheloveofBLOG. Claire x
    The Pramshed recently posted…10 easy ways to cut costs as a parentMy Profile

    • Haha, glad it wasn’t just me!! Woburn was awesome. Glad you had a great time too and thanks for reading xx

  14. Pingback: Meal Out #FamilyFunLinky - Two Tiny Hands - Adventures with the Robot

  15. Oh I totally agree that my inspiration always strikes at the wrong time. And even if I get a chance to jot a quick note down, the words just don’t flow as easily once the moment has passed. I have to admit that I have purposefully checked the wifi situation for our holiday this year so that I’m not totally out of the loop, but I haven’t decided yet whether my little laptop is coming with us too. You certainly make a convincing argument! #sharingthebloglove
    Lucy At Home recently posted…#Blogcrush Week 18 – 16th June 2017My Profile

    • Well if you do take it, let yourself take a break from anything you don’t love / want to do more of. Remember the holiday is about you! Thanks for reading lovely xx

  16. I’m always full of good intentions during the day but once the kids are in bed I find it hard to get the same motivation! I write best when I’ve got no distractions – coffee shops work well if I ever get the chance to go on my own 🙂 #SharingTheBlogLove

    • Oh I love going to a coffee shop with my laptop and writing. I feel so cool and urban!!! Plus, you’re right that there are no distractions which helps a lot. Thanks for reading xx

  17. Yes I get inspiration at strange times, riding the metro seems to work. I tend to write when the kids are at school or like now at night. When the juices flow – gotta write! #sharingthebloglove

    • I need to get better at just writing when I need to, even if it’s on a scrap of paper. Sounds like you have a great approach. Thanks for reading xx

    • Glad to hear you do the same! I’ve not used buffer before – I usually use Social Oomf but I buffer looks like it might be a bit slicker. Will have to give it a go! Thanks for reading xx

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Hello, I'm Angela. I'm Mum to one small person. I'm a Techie, Gardener, cake lover and tea addict. I also have far too many opinions...hence the blog. You can read more about me here. You can also follow me on Twitter so you never miss a post. Hope you enjoy reading!
   


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