Tell us your name and a bit about your family? When did you become a Mum and to whom?
My name is Carly Crawford. I am a mum of two little girls ages 5 and 7, and a step-daughter who is 15. My husband and I have been married for 10 years this year, and we have moved a lot during that time. We met whilst living in the UK, then moved back to Africa where we had out two little girls. We moved back to the UK in June last year and that’s when my bonus daughter came to live with us. We are now a complete family of 5.
What makes up your portfolio of careers?
I am a Parenting & Family Travel blogger at Mom of Two Little Girls, and I also have a Freelance Copy-editing, Blogger Support and Social Media Training business – Blue Media Edit.
Did you start with one and grow or have you always had a few things going on?
When my children were both in school full time, I did a Proofreading & Copy-editing course, and I started my blog. After a while I started offering support service to other bloggers, mainly editing their writing, and teaching them how to use social media more effectively to promote their own blog. You could say that one thing let to the other, but it was a natural progression.
Do you have a favourite within the portfolio?
I love editing other people’s blog posts. I am passionate about not changing their voice to make their post ‘vanilla’ but it is important that blog posts are spelling error free and grammatically correct. Combined with my SEO experience this is a service that a lot of bloggers really appreciate. Most of my clients have a lot to say, but sometimes struggle to make their writing readable or don’t want to have to learn the technical side of post formatting and blogger SEO.
How do you manage working around your children?
I work when they are at school. When you use social media to promote yourself, sometimes it can be hard to keep this perspective in place, but I do try my best to be present when they are around. Time management is critical.
Can you describe a typical day, what tasks do you have to get done, how do you manage your time?
A typical day for me starts with a cup of coffee. I need my “momfuel” before the kids start with all their demands. Then it’s the usual, feed them, get them dressed and get them to school. As soon as I get back from the school run I usually tidy up the kitchen and put a load of laundry on, make another cup of coffee and sit down to work. I manage my daily diary using my Outlook Calendar. I block out time slots for specific work. It helps me to stay organised. I usually bill my clients on an hourly basis to it’s easier to block out time slots depending on the work schedule. I have started treating my blog like a client so I allocate time to it as I would any other client.
The afternoons are focused on the girls and their sporting and club requirements which are many and varied. I try to make sure I get dinner on the table by 18.00 and then it’s bath time and chill. The two younger girls go to bed at about 19.30, and the teenager spends most evenings doing her homework, studying, or snapchatting her friends. My husband and I relax in the evenings watching TV. I don’t often work in the evenings, but if my husband has something on then I might sneak in a few extra hours of work.
What challenges have you faced managing your different roles and how have you overcome them?
Time management is the biggest challenge. Managing my own time, as well as being available to my family is not easy but I like to think I have struck the right balance. Other than that, the thing I struggle with the most is self-promotion of my freelance business. I’m really rubbish at it. It’s much easier to tell other people what they should be doing than it is to put my own advice into practice!
What’s the best thing about having a portfolio career?
My blog is my passion, but Blue Media Edit is what keeps me motivated to improve myself. I love that the parts of what I do compliment each other but are essentially different.
What are your plans for the future? Do you think you’ll stick with multiple roles or would you like to focus on just one?
I can’t see my situation changing for now. Going back to a full-time job is something I would consider, but then I would probably stop freelancing altogether because of the need to balance my family and work life.
What advice would you give for someone who is interested in having a portfolio career?
It has huge benefits if you can manage your time correctly, mainly for my family as I am able to juggle my time to suit their needs. For myself, the variety and different opportunities that it offers helps to ensure that I am never bored or stuck doing just one thing.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us?
Like I said, I am not very good at self-promotion. If there are any services I have mentioned above that you would like to know more about, please drop me an email or contact me via social media and we can have a chat.
BLUE MEDIA EDIT
MOM OF TWO LITTLE GIRLS