ME: ROMPER BB Dakota | HEELS Steve Madden | BAG Rebecca Minkoff c/o
LIV: DRESS Gap | SHOES Target | BOW Dillards | BAG Rebecca Minkoff c/o
During the Reward Style Conference I was asked by a lot of girls how I manage having a full time job, being a wife/mother AND run my blog. This has been a question asked by a lot of my readers too. I promise I am not a super woman and I have PLENTY of bad moments. It has taken me a while to get to a good spot with managing everything. I am not an expert by any means, but I thought I would give you an insight on how I manage everything.
My Career/Job– I have been working full time since College. I started my career at JB Hunt and then moved into the vendor community. Wal-Mart was founded in my hometown and almost every large vendor has an office here. I worked for Unilever for 3.5 years and then last year came over to Reckitt Benckiser. I run a very large replenishment desk for 5 categories at Wal-Mart. I have a background in computer information systems and transportation/logistics. My job is the usual 8-5, M-F.
Organization– Being organized is KEY for me. When I get off track, that is when my stress levels go through the roof! Below is how I manage my work/life balance…
My Planner– I ALWAYS have my planner on hand (I use this one). I usually have the entire month mapped out with blog post ideas, outfit shoot times, and meetings for my job. Of course last minute things can pop up like a quick turnaround collaboration, Drs Appts and etc. Being Flexible, but still keeping on track is key. I also have my blog editorial calendar mapped out for 3 months. For example, major sales, season changes, future campaigns, travel dates etc. I can go into more detail about this if you guys want me too (comment and let me know!) When I have a visual of everything I have scheduled, it’s easier to see that I can’t possibly do everything (even if I want too haha!)
Meal Prep– This may be a silly thing to some, but meal/grocery planning is huge for us. We have spent way to much money over the years on eating out so we are trying to cut that back and eat more at home. My husband jokes that when I cook at home its like eating out, because I got ALL out. I have always LOVED to cook. I had to scale that back quite a bit, but occasionally we love to cook up a gourmet meal. We have found 5-10 meals that we cook on repeat and usually have the ingredients readily on hand. If you guys want to know what they are let me know in the comments. Of course not every single week is perfect. We still eat takeout, some nights we spend 45 talking
arguing about what we want to eat that night haha, and we have emergency frozen pizzas in the freezer. If we get of track, we do better the next week. We spend more time at our day jobs then we do with our actual family, so having meals planned in advance gives us that much more time to spend together.
My Lunches– My weekday lunch times usually vary but I use the time to either catch up on blogger emails, edit photos, get in a workout, shopping for looks, taking blogger meetings and sometimes even shoot a look! An hour does not seem like a lot of time, but let me tell you, a lot can be accomplished if you put your mind to it!
Shooting Schedule– My mom and I shoot every Sunday (pending weather.) I try to schedule our shoots when Olivia naps. We usually shoot 4-5 looks and 3-4 insta looks. I map out locations before hand and we always like to get ahead if we can. We also have our go to spots when we are in a pinch. My mom has a very artistic eye so she is always looking for new spots when she is out and about too. I posted a “BTS” of our last blog shoot on snapchat the past Sunday. If you guys like seeing things like that on snap let me know!
Also for those of you that have asked, yes we recently got some new lenses and I love them! My favorite is the 85mm F1.4 (amazing for detail shots!) I use the Nikon D7100 body currently. Shopping around for a new one though if any of you have any favs! Must be Nikon since I just invested in lenses.
Instagram Scheduling– Instagram is like a mini blog and very important for bloggers growth. I sometimes feel like instagram is a job in itself! Over the last 6 months I have found that if I can get my insta content scheduled out earlier in the week, it keeps me from getting stressed out after work. I am already dolled up on sundays so my mom and I take advantage of being in great locations and shoot a few extra pics for instagram. I usually plan my outfits for the week in advance and if time allows, I even shoot my mirror, over head and detail shots on sundays. I don’t have the advantage of that great mid afternoon light during the week because I am at the office. Of course I do not schedule every single picture, but having some content ready to go before the week starts always makes for a less stressful week. Side Note: One thing I must mention is that when I post a morning #ootd it is not always what I am wearing to the office. For example, I may post an outfit with ripped denim and a cute top, but I will change into NON ripped jeans for the office. Sometimes it may be a look I wore the night before or one I plan on wearing later that day. We are lucky to be able to wear denim to the office, but I do dress up in classic office wear at least twice a week for customer meetings. Let me know if you want to see more of my office attire on the blog or instagram! I wanted to clarify that as I know it can probably be kind of confusing. I definitely don’t waltz into the office in my destroyed denim and cropped swing tank lol.
A couple of apps I use to edit photos- VSCO (great for mapping out your feed), pictapgo, and snapsneed.
Motherhood– When I get off work, it is a rule of mine to not spend any longer than 15-30 min on “blog work.” From 5-to when Liv goes to sleep, I spend time with Drew and Liv, cooking, etc. I have been guilty of getting out my computer after work to jump into blog work, but Olivia quickly lets me know that is not going to work haha. It is important for my full attention to be on my family during this time. I will say now that Olivia is a bit older, it is easier to manage things. When she was a baby I absolutely was not as organized and prepared. Setting realistic expectations and keeping what is most important close to your heart is key. I never want to take an unnecessary amount of time away from my family due to my blog. It is healthy to have hobbies and have time to yourself which if you are a mom, you know that can be a RARE thing. There are times I feel completely selfish and feel like I failed, but eventually I pick myself up and learn from my mistakes. I am also extremely fortunate to have my mother take care of Olivia while I am working at my day job. I know this is something a LOT of women would die to have and I do not take it forgranted. It worked out 12 years ago for my mother to quit her job and for my sisters and I to pay her for childcare. My mom is a HUGE supporter for all of us to be working moms and she is also a HUGE part of my blog. We are very VERY lucky girls! Also, something I have always struggled with is how much to share Olivia on the blog and my social channels. I will be honest, it freaks me out! I feel like I am not being “me” without having her part of my blog and social so you will be seeing her more this year (like today! haha) . Each and every mom knows whats best for their child so there is absolutely no judgement here. I get asked quite a bit if I am going to share more of her, so I wanted to clarify a bit more. 🙂
Blog Posts– I try my best to get ahead on blog posts but that does not always happen. I usually spend from 9-11pm working on the next days blog posts and my insta schedule. This includes editing photos, inputting proper SEO, scheduling social posts and more. If I didn’t get my workout in that morning or at lunch I usually squeeze in a workout video during this time too.
Deadlines/Commitments- Over committing yourself in blogging is a very easy thing to do. During the first part of my blogging career I had a hard time saying No. I found myself losing sleep, not eating enough, taking time away from my family and friends and quite frankly I was pretty cranky! Building lasting relationships with companies and brands as a blogger is extremely important. This means you need to fulfill all requests, at the best of your ability and ON TIME. To get respect for the content you create, you first have to treat it like a business yoruself. Just because I am a working mom does not mean I get slack from my blogging business relationships. I may have never missed a deadline, but I learned very quickly that I was overextending myself. Prioritizing, knowing your limits and most importantly learning how to respectfully use the word “No” is key.
That is a bit of insight on my day to day life of managing everything. Yes I still sleep (probably an avg of 6-7 hours) and yes my life can get pretty chaotic/hard at times. Am I forgetful and lose my keys every other day… yes. Do I take a downward selfie because my hair is a hot mess and my face looks like death warmed over… yes. Does my husband tell me to put the phone away… yes. I am not perfect by a LONG shot and I definitely make mistakes. I will always and continue to hold myself to a standard of Grace, not perfection.
Drew and I both have hobbies that we enjoy and we both support each other on them. Being a blogger is by choice, so I know the added stresses it can bring are brought on by my own choices. My heart and passion is in this blog and I am extremely thankful for the support system I have around it. I am so greateful for the opportunities and relationships that have come out my little piece of the internet. Most importantly, I am thankful for YOU! I try my hardest to respond to all reader emails, comments on instagram and on the blog. Of course I will miss some, but just know that I am not purposely ignoring you ;).
Managing a healthy work/life balance is challenging but it can be done with the right priorities in place, a heck of a lot of prayer and of course LOTS of organization. If I can tell my body is literally falling apart I scale back. Delegating has never been my strong suit, but over time it has become vital in my sanity… what little I may have left haha.
Sorry for the longest blog post EVER and if you have made it this far, then congrats! If you have any questions, please let me know in the comments or you can email me!
Have a great day and again THANK YOU for reading!
Oh I love your little girl. She’s sooo sweet. And of course I think you’re a superwoman ^^
You manage your life perfectly!
Thank you! i def try to mange things the best way I know how, but believe me.. i am no where near perfect haha. Thank you again!
Great post, it is interesting to see how other working moms do it all on a daily basis.. Would love to see more work outfits and real life outfits. Love your style!
Thank you Pam! I will definitely do more work outfits soon! I appreciate your feedback
I would love to know more about your food prep/ meals!
Thanks for the feedback! I will work on that post asap!
Thanks for the post! Love this as I am a new blogger, mom of 2, and work full-time. Still trying handle stay in front of my IG content. I am always scrambling after work for a little bit of sunlight to take a picture.
oh gosh girl! The worst is when daylight savings time comes in September and it gets dark quicker! Its always helpful to have some back up images in your camera roll! Beat of luck on your new blog too!
Such a wonderful post, Tara. Your multitasking skills are phenomenal! I often find it so difficult to manage blogging, working in a corporate law firm, studying and running a household so overwhelming. You make it look effortless. Your content is always incredible, I would have guessed you were doing this as a full time commitment! Hats off to you.
Love from South Africa
Omg! South Africa! Thank you so much for reading! I appreciate your kind words more than you know. Again thank you!
I’m SO HAPPY you wrote this! Over time, I’ve realized that organization really is key and you’ve got to stay focused. Having a full time job plus blogging and trying to keep consistent material can be so difficult if you don’t have everything planned out. I’d love to know what your go-to meals are for your family. All I can manage with the time I have left is a crock pot on Sundays! Lol! I’m glad I’m not the only one who takes photos and changes for work, lol!
Law of Fashion Blog
haha you are not alone girl! It is hard to manage it all, but if your heart is in the right place it will all work out! I will work on the meal posts!
I would love to hear the go-to meals and how you prep them.
Hi Jaime! I will work on that post asap!
This is an amazing post! I work full time in corporate, I’m mom of 3, and just starting blogging mainly on IG a year ago. I attempted to start my online blog but failed because I couldn’t figure out how to manage it all. I love that you are not afraid to admit that it’s not easy! You are an amazing women and I envy your success! Keep it up beautiful! 😘
Stephanie you are bringing tears to my eyes. Thank you so much for your sweet words. Hats off to you for raising 3 kids and working full time. That right there shows you have the skills to do what your heart desires. Pick back up the blogging again soon and dont hesitate to reach out if you have any questions.
That’s so sweet of you, thank you! I’ll send you an email, I actually do have a few questions that might help me with building up my followers on IG.
Thank you for sharing how you juggle it all!
I would love to see more work attire – as a full-time working mom, I have struggled to find blogs and instagrammers that regularly show stylish and appropriate work attire. My job is in Marketing for a financial services company where we are mostly business professional – no denim and even business casual is always slacks and a blazer. I’m always looking for inspiration to bring color and style into my workwear!
Hi Emily! Thank you so much for your feedback! I will work on posting more work posts soon. I love dressing up for work and I am happy to hear so many girls are interested in that type of clothing!
This is SUCH a great post. I would love to see more of this kind of writing for you – editorial calendar planning, more wear-to-work, etc.
Pink Champagne Problems
Thank you so much girl! I will get to working on those posts asap!
I woke this morning stressing over a million things and how there is never any time for all the things I need and want to do….BUT then….I see your post and I left an instant calm. This has been one of the best posts I’ve read recently. I’m a new wife and working on being a new mom (fingers crossed). Every day is a struggle trying to stay on top of workload and personal life. Recently I’ve made a few changes to make this easier, however they have not been very successful. Your post has really put things in perspective and if you can juggle all the things you have going and raise a beautiful little girl, I know I can do it. Thank you for this. Thank you for showing me that you don’t have to stay home to be a successful blogger and wife. Thank you for showing me that a working girl can do it all.
I would love to hear more about your meal planning schedule and blog/Instagram schedule.
Girl I am putting you on my prayer list right now! Such and exciting time for you! Keep working towards your goals and do not give up! I faced MANY hurdles through this whole process and there were days that were far from glamorous. It is about learning from mistakes and overcoming hurdles. I appreciate your kind words more than you know! Thank you!
Yes this was a great blog post! I feel like I have even more questions! Hahaha
Some things I would like to see in your blog are stuff that you do on the weekend with your daughter, blog posts that includes your Mom as well, how you got started blogging, your meal/food prep would be so helpful as well as work attire! Also I would like to hear what pieces are staples for the spring/summer time. I like to hear more personal blogs with the mixture of the sponsored posts of outfits and such. Thanks for sharing this!!! It was great reading it all 🙂
Thank you so much for the feedback! I will def be including more lifestyle posts this year. I love the idea of sharing what i do with Olivia on the weekends! I also have a staples post in the works for summer so stay tuned for that!
Again thank you!!
Great post. I’m actually one of your insta followers and had never visited your blog before. After I read your caption saying that you were a working mom as well as a blogger instantly caught my attention and made me curious as to how you handle your day. After reading this post, I have a new appreciation for you and other working bloggers…and for your mom! Hopefully I’ll catch a glimpse of this lovely person in your Mother’s Day post? She sounds like she is a treasure.
Thank you for coming over and reading and for following on instagram! I hope to have my mom on here very soon! I have to convince her first haha. She is a saint and we are so so lucky to have her!
It’s always interesting to hear how moms are doing the blog thing and managing home life and work life, too! Do you have a flexible schedule at work? Or did you mean you write your blog posts from 9-11pm?
oops! Yes I meant 9-11pm. I fixed that! My job is pretty busy most of the day and the busy times for my job are right in line with the busy times for blogging! Just my lucky huh! haha
Appreciated this post and so glad you shared!!! So many blogger’s out there keep their “secrets” to themselves on how to be successful in this industry and I just love when people share how they did it! The process is different for everyone but it’s awesome to read how you do it and some tips and tricks I could learn from!
A faithful reader for many years and fellow blogger,
How 2 Wear It  http://how2wearit.com
Hi Morgan! Thank you for reading for so long! I am all about supporting each other. We are all in this together right?
I would love to hear how you plan out your blog post! I live an extremely busy lifestyle as well and I am in desperate need of a better system. I want to be consistent with my blog post but it is SO hard.
Hi Alexus! I will work on a blog post organization post for the near future for sure! Thanks for the feedback!
Would love to see more work outfits! About to make the transition from college to full time work (ah!) so would love some inspiration on professional outfits that are still fun and cute!
HI Grace! I will def post more work attire! Its so fun that you girls are interested in that! Stay tuned!
Such a great read Tara. As a newbie blogger I am finding the importance of a schedule/calendar really fast. I can’t imagine what your calendar looks like!!! You are and awesome mom and business woman. Loved all your blog post ideas and as always all of your outfits!
Thank you so much Sara! Your sweet words mean the world to me! And best wishes on your new blog! its a fun ride for sure!
Loved this post, thanks for sharing with us. Would love to see more about how you keep organized and your work looks.
Thank you! I will for sure post more organizational posts and work looks. I love that girls are interested in work attire!
Great post! As a full time working mom (and rookie blogger) I know how important organization and planning ahead are. I’d love to see more work outfits and planning tips and tricks.
Hi Ioanna! Thank you! I will def post more work outfits and continue the tips and tricks!
I love this! As a new blogger, I love hearing how people really do manage it all. I also have the kate spade planner and it’s a game changer 🙂
Hi Christine! Welcome to the blogging world. Its a fun ride and you will have a blast being a part of it. The Kate spade Planner IS a game changer!
I am a LONG time reader and I enjoyed this post so much. I enjoy the progression of your blog but as someone that has been around for-EVVAAA, it was fun getting to see a peek back into your “regular” life. (this is in no way a criticism!) You have always been an amazing woman!…from your posts of perfectly themed parties to now. Thank you for sharing your slice of the internet with us!
Taylor! Thank you so much for following along all this time! I appreciate that more than you know. I have always struggled with sharing personal things since having Liv, but this year I told myself to stop letting it affect me. Everything is good in moderation right? Again thank and be sure to check your email 😉
I would definitely like to see more posts like these, especially about how exactly you plan out your shooting schedule and use your planner! I am all about learning from other women the tools they have to do it all!
I absolutely LOVED this post!! As a fellow full-time working girl, blogger, and president of a non-profit the juggling game is hard and it’s nice to know that I am not alone! I loved hearing how you schedule out your Insta posts (i was feeling real bad about my insta-game but knowing that you take your pics in advance made me feel so much better)! I would love a peek into our editorial calendar too!!
Thanks for being so open and honest and allowing us a peek “behind the scenes”- it was really refreshing and motivating for me!!
While I’ve only been a lifestyle blogger for a few years, I have read yours for several. I’ve always admired your posts, pictures, and your honesty too. Your relationship with your family is so sweet, and it’s so nice that your mom is able to do that for all of you. I love hearing how you balance it all, and over the few years I’ve been doing it I feel like I’ve found a schedule that is best for me and my family. Thank your for sharing all the in’s and out’s…you’re the best!
This is really helpful! I’m not a wife or mom yet, but so many bloggers I follow are and I wonder how they do it. The hardest part of blogging is really promoting it so I’m sure that takes a lot of your time!
I love seeing how you balance it. I am a long time reader seldom poster. I would love more work looks and I miss all your parties and party planning post you did before Olivia. I am sure the parties have slowed down but I have loved seeing your family grow, even your extended family when your Sister blogged.
This is such a great post!!
Blonde in Cashmere
I would love to see your recipes! Great post