WE ARE PREGNANT! (and what I’m wearing)

Some of you have guessed, others had no clue, September 2019 our baby is due!

It’s not a food baby this time! We are very excited about this news! We’ve known it for a while, but the first three months was spent hugging the toilet. With the second trimester came my energy, thus, voila the announcement  & collaboration with Paperlesspost.com! (More about that at the end of the post)

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With the second trimester comes body changes, and I have the whole swollen boobs and baby bump yumminess going on. So with that, I ventured to find my first pregnancy dress.

I was quite picky, because of the shape of my body;

My body type: Inverted triangle
I have an inverted triangle body shape. Which means my upper body is proportionally bigger than my lower body. I have big boobs, broad shoulders, and slim legs.

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Source: TThe two pictures on the left I found on google.com

Now that I’m pregnant everything becomes bigger, and thus the type of dress I’m wearing above, the bodycon dress, won’t do anymore.

  • My list:
    I wanted a dress that ticked all these boxes:
    * Fit fitted around my bust but loose around my waist
    * Had sleeves
    * Had a v-neck
    * Is comfortable and breathable fabric for Spring/ Summer

My search began about two months ago. Yesterday I found the perfect dress at Zara!

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I absolutely love this dress! I went for neutral colours since Spring/ Summer is here.

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I paired the white dress with over-the-knee boots because it’s still quite cold.

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It took a journey to find a dress that ticked all the boxes.

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It ties in the front, with plenty of space for our baby

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Pockets are always handy

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The sleeves are what sold me on this dress

The fabric is a blend of linen and cotton.

A big thank you to my lovingly, patient husband for taking these pictures 😀
I love you so much ❤

What do you think?

COLLABORATION WITH PAPERLESS POST

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Paperless Post is an online invitation service. It makes inviting people online beautiful and easy.

Here is some of my favourite designs:

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You might think “Well, I can do that on Microsoft Word.” However, you can tell the difference when something was done thoughtfully and professionally. Paperless Post offers professional invitations that you can:

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If you want to give it a try for FREE , click here

If you want to see the paid options, click here

The end.

If you’ve come to the end of this post, let me know your thoughts! Like the dress?

See you around.

Chantal xx

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Do you hold a grudge if someone doesn’t wish you on Facebook?

It was my husband’s birthday yesterday.

I didn’t wish him on Facebook. That was a shock to a few people.

‘Çhantal, why didn’t you wish Marcel on Facebook?”

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It seems a little odd to me to wish my husband, with whom I share a house with, and to whom I wished in person, to congratulate him on Facebook. (We were too busy enjoying time together on his birthday)

My husband has Facebook, but he doesn’t go on it often. He checks maybe twice a month his Facebook, if at all.

So, why would I wish him a Happy birthday on Facebook?

The answer I got to was this:
1) To show off my love for my husband to the world.
2) To wish ‘him’ but actually, show people on Facebook.
3) Perhaps, since we live far from our family it’s nice for friends and family to see us and keep up to date with our life on Facebook.

Fingers crossed it’s the latter.

For the past 3 years, I’ve felt the burden to wish my loved ones a happy birthday on Facebook, even though I wished them in real life or telephoned them. Have you felt like that?

This year, I decided to not wish anyone a happy birthday on Facebook. If I’m far away, expect a call, or a message, but not a Facebook post. If I’m present I’ll wish you in person.

On my birthday, it’s nice to receive Facebook posts, so I understand that want of a Facebook post, but I do appreciate a phone call/ TEXT more. (Since I’m far away from friends and family)

But I won’t feel offended if you don’t wish me on Facebook.

What has happened? We are now in a generation were people keep grudges if you don’t wish them on facebook. ”I don’t wish you, because you didn’t wish me” What’s the point of the wish then anyway?

The only reason most people remember your birthday is that Facebook reminds them.

The birthdays of the following people are engraved in my head :
My parents & Parents-in-law
Brother, sister
Two best friends Raeesa and Yentl
Some other friends and family
They receive a phone call or a visit on their birthday. because I truly appreciate them.

For our other family members, it’s marked down on our calendar.

Facebook is a reminder of people’s birthday’s I have no intention of remembering, and just wish them a ”Happy birthday” wall post (If on that day I’m on Facebook.)

If you happen to miss my birthday, it’s on 11 September, hard to forget since the twin towers and everything, but don’t worry I don’t hold a grudge! 🙂

What’re your thoughts on birthday posts?

Instagram needs normal pictures too

Just a normal picture of me. Like many other pictures I have of myself, that gets lost on my camera roll. Never to be seen again.

But I like this picture.

Why?

I don’t know.

I think cause it’s a normal picture of me. I don’t expect any compliments. I know there’s no Instagram filter. No crazy makeup.  Just a moment freezed in a busy lifetime.

Instagram needs normal pictures too.

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Travelling again- Zonneweelde Guesthouse review

 Many people say ‘I’ve wanted to travel but never get to’.
Me on the other hand, hate traveling.
It makes me anxious.
Since my life had taken a different path and I travel often, the best way for me to look forward to traveling is changing into my sleeping robe and experiencing the guesthouses.
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I visit many guesthouses and hotels, so it seems fit for me to review them.

This week I’ll be posting 5 reviews on 5 guesthouses.

In South Africa, Zonneweelde Guesthouse has become my favorite guesthouse. I’ve done a review on one of their rooms already, but today I want to show you my favorite room in the guesthouse.

If you are a traveler or just love to see what’s out there, you will like this post. Mostly because it’s a luxury room that’s ‘normal people’ affordable. If you are thinking about going or traveling to any other destination, at the end of the post I’ve left a 10% discount code!

In my previous review on Zonneweelde, I’ve given information about safety, the culture of the town, etc.

Today I’ll go more into detail about the first things travelers want to know about: Are the mattresses good? How big is the wardrobe? Do they have a bath or shower? Is there free parking? Etc. And I have video footage!

ZONNEWEELDE GUESTHOUSE:

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Zonneveld is a guesthouse situated in Worcester, Western Cape, South Africa. It is situated in town, close to all the local food stores, clothing stores, banks, and entertainment.

ROOM:

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I like this room the best because it’s spacious and private.

When I arrived there, I took a refreshing shower, put on a robe, dried my hair, got into bed and watched a good movie on the tv. It gave me a luxurious feel, a feeling of peace and rest.

Another surprise was, the pictures don’t show how big the room really is, so it was a pleasant surprise when I arrived.

  • It has a king-sized bed with a great mattress.
  • The room comes with a mini-fridge, microwave, and a kettle. An iron is available on request.
  • Free unlimited wifi is available
  • A two-point plug is available.
  • It has a flat screen tv with selected DSTV channels. (South African cable)
  • It has an air-con, which I needed for the summer’s heat.
  • The room is equipped with two beautiful chairs that looks like it came from the Victorian age.
  • It has a big wardrobe and it has plenty of mirrors.
  • Linens and towels are provided.
  • Hair dryer is provided.
  • Coffee, tea,cups and teaspoons are provided
  • Daily cleaning of room for free

BATHROOM

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I like the bathroom sink the most. It’s plain white and beautiful. It has a shower (hot & cold water) and a toilet. The bathroom is spacious.

(This bathroom is good, but it’s not my favorite bathroom in the guesthouse. The room next to it (the double room) has, in my opinion, the best bathroom. But that room is smaller, so that’s why this is my favorite room at Zonneweelde guesthouse.

BALCONY:

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I love this room because the balcony is huge! You share the bacony with the next room, but every time I’ve been there, I’ve had the balcony to myself.
It has plenty of couches and a coffee table. The view from the balcony is the garden and the pool.

POOL & GARDEN
The pool at Zonneweelde guesthouse is located in the garden. The pool is small. It has pool chairs underneath the shade of the trees. And the garden has different flowers and plants.

PARKING SPACE:

Zonneweelde guesthouse doesn’t have garages, but they do have parking space inside the yard. I’ve never left my car there, since I don’t travel by car, but I’ve asked other guest if their cars were safe and they’ve said yes. I’ve asked one worker if they’ve ever had problems with car safety and she said no.

THE OWNERS & THE WORKERS:
The owners of Zonneweelde lives at the back of the guesthouse. I’ve only met the husband (I forgot his name) and he was very friendly and helpful. One of his children works at the guesthouse and she is also friendly. They have two cute dogs.

The workers are very friendly and helpful. Sometimes I’ve arrived at Zonneweelde without booking beforehand and they’ve helped me with no stress at all.

THE FOOD:
I was served a British breakfast (check out the video below) plus a variety of cereal, coffee, tea, and juice was available. The breakfast is 4,70 euro/ $5,79/ R70

DISCOUNT CODE:
If you decide to go, tell the owner I said hello! Also, if you book through bookings.com you can save 10% on your accommodation. Not just to Zonneweelde but to any place you book through bookings.com

Here’s the code: https://www.booking.com/s/34_6/md0ege38

ZONNEWEELDE GUESTHOUSE INFORMATION:
Address: 127 Church St, Worcester, 6850
Phone: 023 342 6953
Book here

I’ve sent my husband a quick video over WhatsApp to show him how the room looks since he is in The Netherlands. I decided to post it. I find it’s always better to see pictures and videos. I wasn’t planning on reviewing the room on my blog, so excuse if the video is so short.

I’m going back next week again, to the same room, perhaps I’ll take better footage. Also, if you want to see anything else or have any other questions, please do let me know and I can ask the owner when I’m there again!

PS: Did you enjoy reading this review post?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beginner bloggers: 2 ways to make money

In the past week, some of you have asked me about mainly two things: What my thoughts were on Affiliate links (can you make real money with it) and what my thoughts were on Ko-fi (a link where your readers can buy you a ‘coffee’/donate $3.)

In this post I will tell you of 2 ways I know makes real money.

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Back in 2014 and 2015, I use to add affiliate links to my blog.

After that year, I stopped with most affiliate links because I did not see growth. If something doesn’t work after a considerable amount of time, and I’ve done my best, I simply move on to the next.

Now in 2017 I only do affiliate links that work for me and might work for you too, because there is logic in the method.

Tips on selecting affiliate links:
1. Go the website that you shop at the most, most companies have affiliate programs on their website. Sign up.

Why use a store that you shop at? Because if you are the average person, you don’t buy overly expensive things on a daily basis.

Most affiliate links that people put up, is overly expensive and so people don’t click on the link because they can’t afford it.
And if they do go to the website, mostly they don’t buy anything which influences your sales.

2. If you are thinking about selling a specific item, choose items that cost less then what people pay for currently in other stores.

Example: I found a company that sells human hair for extremely cheap. First, I bought the hair to see if it’s good quality. Once I saw it was, I contacted the company, told them I have a blog and would like to advertise their hair on my blog with an affiliate link.

I had the hair on my blog for a while but took it off once my blog content changed more to fashion rather than beauty.

(I’m getting back into beauty soon, so I might contact a few companies again.)

3. What’s your demographics? Which country visits your blog the most? Check your stats. Once you know, you can choose affiliate links catering specifically to those people. Get affiliate links from stores in those countries.

4. What do you post about? Fashion? Parenthood? Writing? It’s important to know this because the people who follow you are attracted to that topic. Choose an affiliate link that sells something related to that topic.

If you blog about being vegan, but your affiliate links are for meat products, you won’t make any sales.

Some readers asked about Ko-Fi
Let me first explain what Ko-Fi is.

It’s a platform where creators can set up a free account and link back to their website for readers to buy you a ‘coffee’.

It’s not an actual coffee but rather a donation of $3 (the average price of a coffee ) or more (if they want to give more) In this way, your readers can support you.

How do they pay and how do you receive it?
They choose an option to pay via their bank card or PayPal and you put your bank details or PayPal into your account.

Ko-Fi will let you know when you’ve received the money and it will be available to you immediately. No threshold.

I set up my Ko-Fi account last week and have received some caffeine from some of you, THANK YOU. It’s an incredible feeling to receive a notification that someone actually clicked on the button, and decided to support my blog in that way.

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Screenshot of how it looks when you receive a ‘coffee’

 

If my posts have helped you consider buying me a ‘coffee’ click here.

Questions to the readers:
Do you use affiliate links? What’s the most difficult part for you when you think about affiliate links?

If you want to read more posts like these, I made a whole series of beginner blogger tips. Click here.

See you in the comments, happy living!

Chantal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meet the blogger Daisy Chain

This is a section of my blog that I introduce new bloggers out there. If you would like to join in the fun please check out the details here and email me beginnerbloggertips@gmail.com.
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 MEET DAISY CHAIN
Hi! I’m DaisyChain and I’m a beauty/lifestyle blogger! I’d love for you to visit my blog and see if you like it. It would mean so much 😊
1. What is your blog about?
My blog is a beauty and lifestyle blog. I love makeup and fashion alot so that’s why I wrote about it 😄
2. What type of blogger are you?
 I’m a beginner blogger but I am quite proud of my blog.
3. What’s your vision for your blog?
My vision is a place where I can share my ideas and people read and like them. I’d love to have a following who appreciate my blog and love to read my posts!
4. If your wildest fantasy came true regarding your blog, what would it be?
My wildest fantasy would be to have a following of 1,000 people by my birthday  (June) or my long term dream would be to get a comment saying: “You are amazing! I love your blog so much 😄” that would just be amazing.
5. What are your worst fears about blogging?
They are that no one enjoys reading my posts and that my blog is considered boring.
Wild Cards!
1. If you didn’t have to sleep then what would you do with the extra time?
I would write more posts and spend more time with my family
2. What is the most annoying habit that other people have?
I don’t really find things other people do annoying cos you know it’s there life, they can do what they want but I cannot stand it when people click their pens. It is so annoying.
3. What skill would you most like to master?
I would love to master the skill of photography. I’m not that good at taking photos so I’d really love to be able to take good photos.

How to get sponsored blog posts (free media kit template )

If you are a beginner blogger, you probably don’t get many emails, if any at all, asking you to promote content. So in today’s post, I will tell you how to get sponsored blog posts. as a beginner blogger. I’ve also included free media kit templates.

Now that you know how to maintain your blog, the next step is getting a sponsored blog posts as a beginner blogger.

It takes preparation.

First, you’ll need something that is known as a media kit. What is a media kit? It’s a summary of your blog, mission, goals, and statistics.

  • A media kit includes:
    An introduction to yourself and a picture: This can be brief. Tell the company who you are and add a professional picture.
  • Your mission/goals for your blog: What do you want to achieve with your blog? What do you blog about? What is your niche? Is there any particular post that you do weekly to draw your audience to your blog?
  • Your audience: Who are they? How old are they? Male/ female? From where are they? You can obtain this information from WordPress stats or Google analytics.
  • Testimonials ( See this post on how to get testimonials)
  • Blog post rates (See this post on how to charge for blog posts)
  • Your statistics: What are your WordPress stats? What’s your unique visitors per month, page views per month, email list? This information you’ll find on your WordPress stats or Google analytics.
    What’s the analytics for your social media such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter etc?
  • NOTE: If you fear that your stats are a bit low on one of your accounts then don’t mention it. A media kit is a cv of your blog and you want to showcase your best self.
  • Contact info: Include your name, number, blog address, email and social media.

As a beginner blogger all of these points should be fairly easy to summarize, the only two that may discourage you is your statistics and testimonials.

If you are just starting out, your numbers will not be so impressive. Everyone starts from somewhere. Do not let this discourage you. Instead, you can show how fast your blog is growing, by including “I’ve had this blog for 3 months and my subscription has grown 400%  each moth.’ This shows that your blog has potential.

I have created a professional media kit template for you. You can change the colour. Download it and add your information to it.

Pink Blogger Media Kit

Download the pdf here. Pink Blogger Media Kit

Download word doc here.MEDIA KIT TEMP

Congrats, you have your media kit.

Now that you have completed your media kit, the fun begins.

There are magical places where bloggers and advertisers live happily ever after. It is called blogger affiliate programs.

You sign up to one of the services for free and upload your media kit.

These companies will ask you to select what type of brands you are interested in working with, what type of products you would like to review, how much you charge per blog post, etc.

Once you’ve created your profile, companies browse it and will let you know when they are interested.

In 2014 I was part of a blogger’s group from the UK and received my first sponsored post after a month. I waited until companies contacted me, but you can browse prospective companies you are interested in and send your media kit to them.

Here are some companies you can sign up to:

IZEA

TAPINFLUENCE

Comission Junction

Let me know how it goes!

PS: Do you find the beginner blogger tips helpful? If so, consider buying me a ‘coffee’ 🙂 All the money goes to creating content for the blog. Confused? Click here.

For more beginner blogger posts, click here.

Until tomorrow, happy living!
Chantal