Hey, Sweet Labor Day

Labor Day Summer Fun - Liv Jumping Waves | PepperDesignBlog.com

Labor Day went something like this: littles woke up early and crawled into momma’s bed. I turned on a show for them and read half (!) of the new BHG magazine in one sitting while they lazily enjoyed cartoons (but now they know that mom & dad’s TV really does have kid’s shows. drat.) Post cartoons, we decorated a recent kitchen creation (a flourless chocolate cake) with giant polka dot candy and pretended it was somebody’s birthday (so many smiles on Liv’s face). A few hours later, we were playing in the sand and waves at the beach and enjoying a glorious day off with nana and papa. Post-beach included a friend’s birthday with crazy amounts of street taco choices. I snuck away early to head back home, soak in a bubbly bath and read a (real) book. Kevin stayed at the party with friends until the girls’ bed time and then helped me tuck them in.

I’m not sure which was the best part of a day off that we made the most of. Days like this just don’t happen too often in our house :). And after a weekend solo with the girls (Kev worked Saturday and Sunday), it was so nice to relax a little.

We have embraced every bit of this past summer and it feels odd to watch it slip away. We’re still experiencing record heat around here (and probably will through the beginning of October), but the fact that Michael’s is now selling Halloween decorations and Nordstrom’s officially has sweaters out and available is a sure sign that we are in for a season change sometime soon. I am so ready for a new season.

Summer – you’ve been sweet. Fall – let’s get this started.

If You Have Some Extra Time…

Weekend Links - House Staging | PepperDesignBlog.com

This past weekend I asked Katie Beverley to come over and help me shoot photos of the house from head to toe. It was a good lesson in goal-setting and ‘making things happen’, we accomplished a ton. I staged (aka cleaned) while she found pretty details in the ordinary. I can’t wait to see the photos. Above image from when I came back from the flower shop. Wish my home could always be covered in branches and blooms!

If you have some extra time…

I tried this double knot (found over at Cup of Jo initially) and it is so easy and pretty. Sporting it on our next date night.

Inspiration for the most colorful and sweet outdoor space (ps mine is almost done – but I’ve got more of the blue/lime thing going on).

A House Doctor moment – I’d like to find a way to make this striped bench for the living room (a close up). Have also been searching for a ladder just like this one for in there.

Really, really digging this rug.

Sleep in an IKEA for the night (this is for real).

Kid’s need more sleep and a little emphasis on self-discipline: How to Make Your Kid’s Smarter according to Time.

It’s blazing hot here in San Diego right now, but I’m so ready for fall maternity. Speaking of maternity, just scooped up this pretty dress for a November wedding (love that price).

“In pregnancy, there are two bodies, one inside the other. Two people live under one skin … When so much of life is dedicated to maintaining our integrity as distinct beings, this bodily tandem is an uncanny fact.” An article/guide to taking care of your emotional well-being during pregnancy. (Another one I loved: “As much as childbirth is a major event for the body, it’s also a transformative event for the soul. Just as significant as your own birth and your own death.” You are witnessing – nay, conducting and orchestrating – their most significant life event.)

A casual summer-to-fall dress. And the necklace I’d wear with it (recently met the designer and enjoyed her aesthetic).

I love me a good sale. J Crew – you tease too much.

I’m really admiring Glenn Dean’s art right now (especially his gallery of landscapes and of California).

The Theory of Everything documents the story of Stephen and Jane Hawking – a must-see movie that’s on my list.

What are you up to this weekend?

A New Editorial Calendar System

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

I’ve really struggled with organizing my posting thoughts for this site. For a long time I had no editorial schedule (except for the ideas that lived in my head and the occasional goal of publishing a certain topic on a certain day). I’ve tried penciling notes in a giant notebook, funky wordpress widgets (that caused drafts to publish in the middle of the night) and virtual organizers/calendars. I like to be organized, I like to have a system for my ideas and this was frustrating.

A while back, I read Elise’s idea for a giant cork board with removable post-its and was like – yes! That is what I need. I don’t have the space for a giant cork board but I did adapt the system seamlessly to an old fashioned paper planner.

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

So I’ve tried it for a few months just to test the theory out.

What is amazing about this solution is how easy it is to rearrange and re-sort your entire week or month. There’s no crossing out and penciling in and arrows moving all about as it would look in a paper planner without sticky notes. Likewise, there’s plenty of room to jot handwritten notes and scroll down ideas, a factor I found limiting with digital planners. The post-its make creating a calendar easy.

If you were to compare any of the above ‘June’ posts with what actually went live on that day, I guarantee everything was reordered again at some point after taking these photos. Sometimes that’s because an idea needs more time to simmer, photos aren’t finished, or a fun event plops itself into the middle of a busy week and I push everything else out. The blog is just a little piece of my world and it’s nice to have one central location to stash all of my ideas, and then to be able to close up the planner and put it back in my file drawer.

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

Sticky notes! Genius.

Quick note: there are certain sized mini post-it options that work best in your average paper planners, the ones that I found at my local drugstore were too big (even as minis) so I turned to Amazon and now have ten billion. Here’s a link to the above paper planner again, too.

If I have ideas that I’m not ready to dedicate to a certain calendar date, I sort of throw them in the ‘other’ column there on the far right side. When they’ve marinated and feel right to include, the post-it moves over to an actual day in the planner. Sometimes I make notes on the actual sticky note that dictate to-dos, something like ‘make sure to shoot these photos on Sunday’ or ‘waiting on xyz’. Little reminders and such.

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

Ignore the chicken scratch :).

I bought mini colorful post-its with a future goal of sorting categories by colors. Also, yellow doesn’t seem to be so popular anymore. Where have all of the yellow post-its gone?

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

But right now my monochromatic system is working out really well.

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

My actual editorial calendar? My goal is to post four times each week: Monday and Tuesday morning, Wednesday afternoon, and then a closing post on Friday. Sometimes Monday morning is pushed to Monday afternoon, or Wednesday is pushed into Thursday. Life is crazy :). I have a long term dream of having a post go live every morning of every week day at some point in the future.

I aim for a mix of smaller, quicker posts (like an update or a list of favorite links) with larger, more complex posts (like tutorials, resource guides or home projects) for a balanced feel. I’ve learned over the past five years that blogging has a lot to do with consistency (for readers and for personal organization) and that content, as always, is king. I’ll make a post-it note to put together tips for planning, shooting and writing posts in a more organized way.

Blogging Editorial Calendar | PepperDesignBlog.com

If you are a blogger, I hope that this helps! Have any great tips to share with me about your editorial calendar? I am always looking for faster, smarter ways to get anything done.

PS this doesn’t really fit into the usual ‘Tech Tips’ category, but here are a few more blogging-related posts to share. Happy mid-week!

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