On the Business of the Blogsphere and Whether I Belong In It...

by Brenda

I'm not real sure where to start in on this topic. I have answers, but those answers only lead to more questions.

But I feel like the readers and past customers of Kidlet Occupation deserve to know why this blog and store, so very much alive 8 months ago, is now a ghost town of forgotten busy bags. And if anything will be done about it. And what will be done. And why.

First, I started this blog and store because I thought I was supposed to. I thought it was my job to be the ideal stay-at-home, blog business running, homeschooling mom. I thought that's what every capable stay-at-home mom was supposed to do, right? Be a conservative, frugal, entrepreneuristic {nice word, huh?} woman with pretty hair and makeup and happy kids.

Thing is: I'm not that person, even if I acted like it, I'm not. I'm not an entrepreneur, by any means. And I think I'm starting to be ok with that. You know, if everyone were an entrepreneur, there'd be no opportunity to entrepreneurize {what about that word?}.

I don't think the world was meant to be full of entrepreneurs. These people are very special people. They can take a dream, pen it down, and chase it for all it's worth. They can acheive that monetary goal {some for very noble reasons} and actually enjoy the process.

But I don't have a dream or a goal that involves loads of money. My dream is to simply enjoy my simple life. I don't need a business to do that. So, why am I trying to fit it in? I don't know... really. Except that for some reason, I assumed that's what I was supposed to do, cause you know, the blogsphere told me so {you know, the subconscious thoughts that perculate while you read blogs of women who "have it all together"}.

What does this mean for Kidlet Occupation?

Currently, Kidlet and I have a relationship that's more like a begrudged servitude. It is set up in a rigid, formal business fashion that is dragging me, kicking and screaming, along with it. When I get tired of it, I cut myself loose, only to feel guilty and thus tie myself back on again.

But there are actually some things about blogging that I love. I love to write. And I love to have people read what I write. I love to create printable stuff for my kids. And I love to share that with other people.

What I'd like to see is Kidlet and I carrying on a much more casual, happy partnership, where I am leading the blog and it assists me in writing and sharing - the things I love - when I ask it to. You know, like a man and his dog. It's a beloved friend and helper all at the same time.

What does this mean for you?

1. I will not be selling busy bags right now. I may have a friend who is willing to take over that part of the business for me, but she is in the middle of a cross country move and remodel, so that is on hold for a while.

2. I will continue to blog, but on my own time table. I know, I know... Blogging 101: Blog three times a week or lose your readers. Your blog will never acheive anything if you are not a consistent blogger. Whatever. Whatever. Blah. Blah. Blah. I would love to blog three times a week, I just know that it doesn't always happen, and right now, it's not top priority for me. I understand that my blog's readership will only grow in proportion to my blogging consistantency. I'm willing to accept that. I've proven that I can start an online fire that explodes bigger than I want. If I want it again, I imagine I could recreate it. {Though I don't see the sense in an unplanned bonfire. A controlled productive fire is a better idea, I would think.}

3. The feel of blogging may change. While finding and doing kid activities with my kids is something I love to do and love to share, it's not my writing passion. I will still share a lot of kidlet occupation sort of things, some busy bag ideas, a LOT of school activities, but there may be more things thrown in... randomness... realness. I'm no good at writing how to's. I sound like a haughty dork.

4. I will still continue to promote busy bag swaps. I still get several hundred hits everyday both on this blog and my personal blog for all things relating to busy bags, so the need and want for busy bag ideas and swaps is out there. If you would like to host a swap, please let me know. I can help you get started and get the word out.

5. I will open up this blog to you. There are SO many creative moms out there with SO many awesome ideas. I know this, because every idea I have ever had is almost always based in some way on an idea someone else had. If you have kid activity ideas or educational activity ideas, please please email me, and I will give you a spot as a guest blogger.

Last but NOT LEAST: It is not my goal to make money. If it happens, so be it. If not, I don't care. It is my goal to enjoy my blog and to enjoy such a creative blog world out there and to invite you to enjoy it with me.


{Oh, and yes, I'm still wanting to move this over to WordPress. I'm so stumped though. I'm used to the simplicty of Blogger. Google is my friend, though, so I reckon I can figure out how to manipulate the design.}



Preschool Busy Bag Swap Open

by Brenda

Lacey, from Sprouting a Little Nostalgia, is once again hosting a preschool busy bag swap.

Here are the cost details:

Registration: $15
Shipping to me: $15
Shipping to you: $15
Cost of project: Around $20 for all 20 bags (this is just an estimate)

You can check out the activities, dates, and how to's at her blog.  Have fun!


Would you like to host a busy bag swap? Just drop me an email with the link to your swap post and the cost breakdown, and I will direct Kidlet Occupation's readers your way.

Need help getting a swap started? Email me, and I'll help you out.

A Summer at Home: Tin Foil River

by Brenda


Who knew 20 feet of tin foil, a garden hose, and a few pieces of foam could be so much fun? (Well, ok, up until the point where the argument began and mom put the fun to an end.)



I originally got the idea for the tin foil river last fall from Camo and Bows and promptly pinned it to my Pinterest board to bring out this summer.




This activity kept the kids busy for about an hour, until I just got tired of the fights over whose little foam "ship" won the race. (I really need to find a way to address this tendency to bickering.)



If you're thinking of trying it out, here's how we did it. We unrolled the entire roll in a line. (It works a little better if you have a slight slope in your yard.) We chose to put a curve in our river. Once it's rolled out, we bent up the sides. We had to find wooden blocks and other things to hold up the sides where it tended to leak. To fill up our river, we placed the garden hose at the top of the line and turned it on a slowish speed, but more than a trickle.


Here's what it will cost you:


  • A cheap roll of 20 feet foil from Walmart - approx. $1
  • 1 hour or so added to your water utility bill
  • Creative brain cells to find small floatable items laying around


Have fun!

A Summer at Home: Park Hoppin' {free printable}

by Brenda


This summer, the kids and I are park hoppin'! How fun is that?! Well, a lot, actually!


Each Friday, if the kids have performed their morning routine (and I remember to have them do it) each day that week, we visit a new park.


We take note of the features of the park. Things like... is there picnic spots? Could we ride bikes here? Is there playground fun for all four ages (2, 3, 5, 7) and yet condensed enough that mom can keep an eye on everyone at once?


We've visited two new parks so far and look forward to checking out the many others in our sprawling town. We're on the lookout for the perfect park.


I've created a chart to keep track of all the parks we visit and the features they have. It is also my goal to take a group photo of the kids at each park. We'll see if I can remember.


If you'd like to park hop this summer, feel free to make use of our park hoppin' chart. (And if you live near Fort Wayne, drop me an email, and we can park hop together.)

Just for Moms: Guilt Series, Conclusion

by Brenda

Image from phillipmartin.info

I abandoned this series, many weeks ago, with this question:

Is not Proverbs 31 a Scriptural command for us women? Should we not strive to be that woman?

I think a lot of people completely forget that the virteous woman part of this chapter starts with verse 10, not one. The long description of the perfect wife is just another point in a mother's lecture to her son.

I mean, if you were telling your son what kind of woman to marry, wouldn't you also give a long list of good traits? It's not that you expect your son to find a woman who has no faults, but you would like him to marry a woman who was industrious, respectful, and loving. This is what King Lemuel's mother was saying.

"Lemuel, my son... marry a woman who will respect you, make you great, love your family, and care for you all the days of your life."

Yes, her list was a bit more specific, but I don't believe God ever meant for us to take that list and turn into a play by play demonstration of the perfect wife and mother.

We are not Lemuel's wife way back in the negative something hundred's. We are not Victorian women. We are not pioneers. We are not June Cleavers. We are not our friends or relatives or some other blogger.

We are exactly who we are in this decade, in this century, with our own families.

There's no need to set up some elusive super woman on a pedestal and strive to be her.

Respect. Build up. Support. Love. BE YOU!

That's all there is to it.

Be OK with that.


Did you miss the rest of the series? You can find the other posts below.
Guilt Series, Pt. 1
Guilt Series, Pt. 2
Guilt Series, Pt. 3

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