Tigerlilly Quinn

Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Upping your game on IG (includes balloons!)

So I always say when it comes to social media that although you can be on all of them I don't think anyone has time to be on all of them and do all of them well. For me and my sanity I update most from time to time but focus on the one I'm drawn to naturally, for me that's Instagram.

I absolutely love the community on IG and its constantly inspiring me in my day-to-day life. It's also a brilliant way to keep your readership connected to you in-between blog posts and to gain a new followers that may not have found your blog before. I don't promote all of my posts over on Instagram but when it's something I'm really proud of or think is relevant I'll make a note to tell my followers over there to head over here to check it out! The funny thing is I think a lot of my most engaged followers on IG might not read my blog and solely use the app to engage with my pictures. I find I do that with a lot of my favourite bloggers too as it's such a simple way to keep up to date.

This post is sponsored by my friends over at Balloontime Helium Tanks because if there's something thats like cat nip for IG it's balloons right?!

Whilst I don't have a massive following over on Instagram my followers currently sit at 15k but are such a lovely and engaged audience. That being said I've grown my followers fairly quickly in the last few months and I have really focussed on a few key things to do this. I know it's not about the numbers but about people who genuinely enjoy and interact with your posts but sometimes its good to put yourself out there a bit more so people can find you!

So a few things I've changed up over the last four months (I'm currently gaining about 1k new followers a month) are these little tips.

Firstly I'm using hashtags. That may sound simple but I was previously a bit wary about using hashtags as they seemed a bit spammy and non authentic however I think if you use the right ones you are more likely to find people who are into the same things that you are. I'm not talking about hashtagging #balloons or something but using key hashtags to find similar types of pictures like my friend Xanthe's hashtag #colorcolourlovers and perhaps in this case #colorcolourpink.

I'm pretty much drawn to bright colours and pastel colours so most of the hashtags I use are around this theme. Some of my favourites are:

#acolorstory #capturingcolour #abmlifeiscolorful #colorsplash #livecolorfully #candyminimal #ihavethisthingwithpink

Then I might add different tags depending on the picture so ones with my children I might use #childhoodunplugged or ones with me #motherhoodunplugged

Check out my pictures to see which other ones I'm using!

The other thing I've started to use is Iconsquare which helps show me my weekly follower growth and which of my posts have been most effective. I have to say I am a bit of geek when it comes to stats like these but it's really interesting to see, for example I was pleased to see about 350 people follow me a week but then I also saw that 100 unfollow me each week! You can use a free version or pay for a pro version which gives you a few more insights. I'm currently giving the pro one a go and seeing how much I use it and how helpful it becomes.

I also use an app called Prime which shows the best 20 times throughout the day for me to post by calculating the amount of interaction I've had from my followers at these times. If I'm honest I don't use this religiously as I'm often too excited to share a pic straight away than wait until a certain time but it also gives the best time throughout that day to share a pic and I try my best to post something then.

The other thing I've become a lot better at lately is replying to people, often if a post gets a lot of comments I do read them but don't always have time to reply straight away and they sometimes get forgotten. I've made it a habit to go through them all in the evening and get back to people, even if it's just to say thanks!

Lastly make your photos a bit fun! I always see a massive increase in my following and engagement when I post pictures of flowers, balloons or cats, ha! I also find inspiration from joining in with photo walks like the one I recently took part with in Clifton.

So why not grab a brightly coloured balloon and see where it takes you!

P.S my outfit in these pictures in case you are wondering are below :

Skirt / Boots / Top / Sunnies

in association with Balloontime Helium Tanks 

A nature scavenger hunt and having quality time outdoors

muddy puddles bristol event

One of the things that was deeply imbedded in my upbringing was being outdoors as much as possible. Our weekends would be spent on family walks and every time we would mention 'I'm bored!' to either of our parents it would be met with 'you've not spent enough time outside today then'. I used to dread those family walks and whinge and moan and do anything to get out of them, unsuccessfully I might add. Then almost to the minute within 30 minutes I would be loving it, finding bugs to inspect amongst the bushes or bluebells to pick for my flower press. Our family walks would be the times we'd spend really quality moments with out parents, walking along side one of the other and knowing we had time for a long chat without anything getting in the way. I remember one time walking up a hill with my parents and siblings and as we reached the top my dad suddenly grabbing my hand and running down with me, the steepness of the ground propelling us on and screaming and laughing at the same time partially out of fear and exhilaration but knowing all the while that I was safe holding onto my dad and being in the moment outdoors and free.

It's something I'm conscious a lot of in raising Wilf and it's something I feel quite guilty about not doing enough of. Yes we live in a city but we live in a city full of green spaces, city farms and parks. Getting out into nature isn't always on the top of my list of things I want to do though so more than often our activities include museums or cafes or charity shopping together instead, all of which is good of course but I think we do need a bigger mix!

When Muddy Puddles invited us along to their free Bristol Nature Scavenger hunt it was a great excuse to make the effort to get stuck into nature and the outdoors a bit more. They actually run these events in a few different places in the UK so it's worthwhile checking their events page to see if they are near you.

Muddy Puddles actually work with 'Farms for City Children' donating waterproofs for the children who volunteer at the farms involved with the scheme. They also run the 'Muddy Academy' which is an outdoor learning resource for teachers.

We had such a great time at the event and totally lucked out on the weather! We brought a picnic to eat on the beautiful Brandon Hill and took our time collecting the items on our colour sheet to make a rainbow of flowers and leaves for a nature picture. It's a simple idea but one that we wouldn't really have done without a prompt and it's things like this that remind us why outdoor time together is so good for us all.

Wilf is wearing the Puddle Pac-a-Mac and also the PuddleStomper Wellies.

We received Wilf's coat and boots for free but all words and thoughts are my own and we had such great fun at their free event I'd really recommend it.

Monday, 2 May 2016

My Top 5 Newborn essentials

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1, Babygrows and vests - These ones are from this months sponsor French Blossom. I'm in love with lots of the items in their store but this organic bodysuit was just so sweet. They sell lots more than clothes including treats for mums, toys and interiors so do hop over and give them a look, see if you can find their wooden animals, my favourite!

2, Ergobaby sling and newborn attachement  - We actually only discovered the Ergo when Wilf was about 6 months old, up until then we had been using a stretchy wrap but we immediately fell in love with the Ergo and how comfortable it was to wear our baby in. This time round we use it just as much but we also bought the newborn attachment so we could wear her straight away! You can get 10% off everything in store at Baby Cubby with TIGERLILLYQUINN until the 9th of May.

3, The Doona car seat pushchair - This without a doubt has been the most genius invention we've discovered this time round.  We did have a pram sorted out for Mabli and despite loving it's atheistics when it came down to our city life it just wasn't practical for our way of life. We travel by public transport a lot and enjoy travel in general so often use the tube, plane etc and this pushchair makes life just SO much easier for these types of things. It basically changes from a pushchair to car seat with a click of a button as the wheels fold up underneath it. It's super compact and doesn't come with any unnecessary bells and whistles. We just love it! I'll be blogging about it properly soon but it's been a total lifesaver on more than one occasion.

4, The Leka play gym from IKEA - I guess any play gym kind of does the trick but I find the look of this one so much more appealing. At first she would just look up at the different colours but now she grabs and turns things and it can amuse her for a good 30 minutes!

5, Green People baby massage oil - We use Green People products for both our children (and myself!) and are such big fans of them. I don't do baby massage with Mabli as much as I did with Wilf but I do try now and again and she really loves it. It's also just a nice excuse to spend some time one on one together and a good bedtime routine.

What are your newborn essentials? Anything I'm missing out?

Saturday, 30 April 2016

Me and Mine April

In true spirit of the 'Me and Mine' project these pictures were taken very last minute, it's not as if we had a whole 30 days to do them is it? ;)

This month has been a really busy one for our family, we took our first trip away as a family of four which was so incredible, although at times it was tiring traveling with a very little baby and a four year old just getting out of our home and spending real quality time with each other was fantastic. I'm still writing up my posts from our trip but if you want to see part one then click here or our video here. I actually think it's my favourite video of us yet.

Tom returns to work at start of June so we have one more month of the four of us at home. For those who don't know Tom took my maternity leave so I could continue working on this blog, it's been such a great help but also meant we've had the best almost 6 months off together. It's something that we won't be able to do again so it's meant to much to us all.

Wilf found out his school place a couple of weeks ago and although we're happy with the school he's going to I keep getting very emotional thinking about it! I can't believe there's only 4 months left until he starts. I know I'll be in floods of tears on the day, waa! It's so crazy to me how we are at this stage in our life already and it's a reminder of how fast the months and years are going by. It makes me want to freeze time because right now with my two littles at home with me is my absolute dream. We'll just have to make the most of the next few months and I know deep down that he will absolutely love it.

I've found that now the baby is almost 5 months old life is sort of returning to some form of normality. I've been able to pop to London a couple of times and so far she's been a very easy travel companion! There's nothing like a cute little baby to break the ice at an event either!

I can't wait to see what next month brings!

The Me and Mine gang have a new member this month as the lovely Katie has had her baby boy! Don't forget to hop over to the other blog hosts Lucy, Katie, Lucy, Jenny and Alex to see what their families have been up to and as always do join in if you have a picture of your family to share! Even if it's just on Instagram with the hashtags #meandmineproject

I'm SO thrilled to be nominated in both the MADS and the BIBS again this year. It means so much to be featured in categories like lifestyle and fashion because when you've only recently had a baby you can often feel anything but fashionable! Of course I'm just as thrilled to be in the baby section as I am over the moon to be in the baby phase of my life again and to be recognised for that puts such a smile of my face. So thank you so very much for anyone who nominated me in any of those categories, it means so much to me and to everyone who's in the finals I think!

Of course if you want to fling me a vote to win that would be gratefully received too! ;)


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