Don't Recreate the Wheel, Improve It!

Don't Recreate the Wheel, Improve It!

The wheel was invented in 3500 B.C. I can't math so I don't know how many years ago that is but I do know that our species as we know it didn't even exist then. And we (that is, humans) have been improving it and finding a million other uses for the wheel. If generations of homo sapiens can continuously re-imagine the wheel then you can re-imagine an idea and make it better than anyone has ever seen. 

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Planning Session: 2017 Goals & Plans

Planning Session: 2017 Goals & Plans

Right now you hold in your hot little hands (or scrolling across your screen anyway, sue me, I like the phrase!) the inaugural post in what will become The Planning Sessions! My aim is to make this series as informational as possible while still staying my light and airy self. So what better way to kick off than with goals & plans, right? After all, it is the new year and people everywhere are rife with resolutions! So let's get started shall we?

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Planning For A Successful 2017 (my planning setup)

Planning For A Successful 2017 (my planning setup)

The end of 2016 is approaching and with it comes a new year of planning trial and error. Honestly, I can't even believe how many planners I went through this year (nevermind the $$$ spent on them!) The god news is that by planning ahead (ha! See what I did there :-P) I as able to create the most perfect home management system that will fit my every need! 

A quick note: This planner is strictly for home management planning and not my daily planner. It's a Plum Paper Planner and I ordered it with all the bells and whistles, then ripped it apart and put it back together (with the help of the nice people over at my local Office Max) exctly how I wanted it.

In the photos you're about to see, you will catch a glimpse inside how I am planning a successful 2017 and how I will be accomplishing all my goals, completing projects and (somehow) staying on task. Ready?

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3 Problems We Face in Life (and how to solve them)

Hello there! 

 

It's been awhile, hasn't it? 

 

While I could go on and on all day long (and turn this post into a self absorbed novel that I am 100% sure no one would finish reading) about the why I have been absent, I'll boil it all down to this: LIFE! It does happen folks! And I decided to write this post about how I cope with the life struggles that happen and how it affects my business in hopes of possibly helping others when their own struggle gets very, very real. 

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Hashtags That Work!

Hashtags That Work!

Hashtags used to be the stupidest thing I had ever heard of. It seemed silly to me to put a pound sign in front of a word and call it a "link". But then I started reading about them and learning more about how they can be beneficial to blogging and building a following

Hashtags are silly. And they do make you use an extra step in your process. But they work. And this post is all about which hashtags I use to generate the most views/engagement.

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How I Created A Functional Routine

How I Created A Functional Routine

How I created a functionable routine is actually a bit of a long story. And after Lily came along, blogging because a full time gig for me. I knew I needed something that would keep me on top of my game and, with a major love for planning supplies, I also knew coming up with something wouldn't be easy. 

Creating a routine is something that semi happens naturally when you have a new baby. While you are getting to know each other, you are also starting to set boundaries and a routine that will likely be embedded in you and your child for years to come. Haphazardly trying to get yourself organized, work and change diapers is absolutely zero fun.

So when I came up with a routine that worked I thanked the gods of Pinterest for putting me on the right path. 

Time blocking is your friend my dears! It's the only way I can even begin to make a plan for any day. Color coding is my second secret weapon and the two, hand in hand, will make every day much more smoothly run. This I can promise you with 100% certainty. 

So what's my day look like?

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My Secret Google Analytics Weapon: Quill Engage

My Secret Google Analytics Weapon: Quill Engage

I am betting that every one of you reading this either has Google Analytics set up on your blog or at least knows what it is (for those of you who don't, head on over to GA directly and check it out). The real question is this: Have you ever heard if Quill Engage? I thought not. Well my friends, I am here to introduce you to the absolute best way to get your GA information, in bite sized pieces that actually make sense and will save you nearly every ounce of time you spend trying to decipher GA to put towards better use. Like on actually posting content your readers want to see.

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Planning & Productivity Part 2 - ElleyPlans

Planning & Productivity Part 2 - ElleyPlans

ElleyPlans is my "planner name" on Instagram. It's my handle for the planner community and it's how everyone recognizes my planners from anyone elses. I love being ElleyPlans because that's just who I am. I'm Elley and I plan. 

If you've ever hung around in one of the many planner groups I frequent or followed my posts on IG, you'll notice that I am a die hard Plum Paper girl and that I do, in fact, like to decorate with stickers. 

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Planning & Productivity Part 1 - Getting Started

Planning & Productivity Part 1 - Getting Started

Ahh, planning!   The planner community has considerably grown in recent years, and for good reason. Despite all the advances in technology, most people still need to write down their to do list, appointments and what not. It's not surprising, really, considering how ingrained "writing it down" has become to many of us.   Today I want to talk a little about how I plan and stay productive. And the tools I use to do and stay so. At the end of this post I will have some pretty great goodies so stay tuned and enjoy!

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Removing Blogger Widgets/Gadgets

Removing Blogger Widgets/Gadgets

Blogger holds many little tidbits of useful knowledge deep in its core. It doesn't take a master to pull them out and put them to use, but it does take a keen eye. I couldn't even begin to count how many times I had removed a complete code from my Blogger template and realized well after the fact that I may actually need it again with no way to put it to right unless I uploaded my XML from the last save (usually several months prior).

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How Visual Elements Increase Page Views (+ the 3 types of images every post needs)

How Visual Elements Increase Page Views (+ the 3 types of images every post needs)

Blog posts about images, why you need them how to make/get them or what each social media prefers is an age old topic. It's so age old that blog graphics are one of the most Pinned on Pinterest. It's so age old that it has been around since the bygone era of blogging (we've come a long way since getting our news and television show spoilers and recaps. Dawson's Creek anyone?). Lucky for you, here at EAE, I like to change things up a bit and put my own spin on all of the content I share. Most of the posts compare similar things, some giving more detail that others but I also really love to think outside of the box and come up with new things you may never have thought of or seen.

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An ELLE Tutorial: Truncating Your Posts on your Blogger Blog

An ELLE Tutorial: Truncating Your Posts on your Blogger Blog

Many designers live and die by auto truncating. Personally speaking, I cannot stand it. Let me explain:

Auto truncating is a code that plugs in to your blog (usually in the template) that will allow all your posts to be trimmed. It usually includes a thumbnail and an excerpt of your post and then cuts off with a "read more" link. Sounds great in theory. But the truth is that the auto truncating codes will choose whatever image it pleases from your post, often the one you wouldn't have wanted to use. It also only allows so many characters before the "read more" link that will take readers to the full post. So unless you are planning to count each character at the beginning of each post, it may cut you off mid sentence or even mid word! Not so great in practice. This is where Bloggers page break will become your best friend. You see that little button up there in your "new post"? The one right next to the add video and add photo button? That's a page break. And I am going to show you how to use it. 

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4 Things You Must Do Before Hitting "Publish"

4 Things You Must Do Before Hitting "Publish"

Welcome back readers! It's time for your daily dose of "Blogging with Elle" (I'm not really calling it that, I was going for an Ed McMahon approved intro. But seriously... That is a pretty catchy name) Today I want you all to stop publishing your blog posts. Well, until you hear what I have to say anyway. But yeah, stop right there. Fingers away from the mouse. Listen up. I've got 4 really important things you need to be doing before I can release you back into a publishing frenzy. Are your fingers off that mouse? Are you ready to hear what I have to say? Awesomesauceum. Let's get you back to those posts!

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3 Reasons You Are Being Seen But Not Heard

3 Reasons You Are Being Seen But Not Heard

Have you ever heard that expression about children? "Children should be seen and not heard". Personally, I have a lot of dislike for that saying. Because it implies that children have nothing to say until they become adults. I think that in order for children to become adults with something to say they need to be heard at a young age. But I digress.

Much like those children people don't want to hear, your blog can be treated in much the same way. Maybe you have mastered a great look and overall feel and people enjoy looking at your blog. But they're not really sharing. Here's why

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Stop Relying On Social Media for Your Business

Stop Relying On Social Media for Your Business

See, here's the thing about social media: you can't control it. And unless someone makes you the CEO of Facebook or you find a way to cult brainwash the heads over at Twitter you will never be able to control it. The new Instagram policies have proved that. And everyone plus their brother flipped out and spammed everyone with "enable notifications" posts. Do you know what I did to those people who shared that? I unfollowed them. Why? Because I don't do spam. And that's really all it was.

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How I Avoided Burn out with My Last Launch

How I Avoided Burn out with My Last Launch

Launches are stressful. In the back of my mind I always think about old videos of the first space launch and remembering how every one misquoted "Houston we have a problem" (correct quote: "Houston, we've had a problem"). In that tiny space where this image lives, I'm afraid that when I launch something (product, coaching course, whatever) that those words will be coming out of my mouth.

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How To Rock Social Media Like A Boss

How To Rock Social Media Like A Boss

Your social media posts are the glue that binds together the networks. Without a sharing your content and linking back to your site, it's relatively pointless to expect yourself to earn an income with social media tools. But you knew that, right? The hard part is how to create a short bio that is welcoming, engaging, professional and memorable all at the same time, usually in very few characters. Can it even really be done? And can you really fill your social media pages with content that will please your audience while still bringing them back to your site to create sales?

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