A Tale of 2 WAHMs

Ramblings of 2 WAHMs - Anita DeFrank and Kara Kelso. Partners in business discuss how we manage successful websites and young children at home.

Monday, July 24, 2006

Search Engine Marketing Blog

I spent some time sniffing around at this blog, and I must admit it's not too bad. It's a good thing to know what's going on in the world of search engine marketing and PPCs. Kinda like the stock market - if you pay no attention to what's going on with your stocks, you could loose a whole lot of money.

They've done a good job setting up catagories in the blog, so you can quick jump to topics of interest. There's links to other blogs and news stories, making this blog somewhat of a "headliner" for the top stories.

Interesting blog and I'll be checking on a regular basis for more news and information. :)

You can check it out here:

Easy Bake Oven

As a child, I never wanted one. I don't know why, it just never interested me. I was perfectly happy baking cookies in the real oven and melting cheese in the microwave. I know I'm probably among the minority here, as it seems those who never had one "always wanted an Easy Bake Over". Well let me tell you, I promise you that you do not want one of these.

My kids got one passed down to them from my aunt. I was puzzled at first since my cousin is only 8yrs old. Why wouldn't she want to be playing with this still? Now I see why.....

First we had to get a new light bulb for it. Thinking it took some special sort of light bulb I went on a hunt. After taking out the screws in the back to replace the light bulb, I realise it's just a regular 100 watt bulb. Ok, so at least this part isn't costly.

Second, we made sugar cookies from a mix. If you've never seen an easy bake oven before, the "oven" part is big enough for about one cookie. I don't know of too many kids that will wait 5-10mins for each cookie. I know mine had a hell of a time and immediately wanted more.

Alright so maybe it's not the best for cookies. Today after much begging, we made something "real" - mini pizzas. One major thing I should have paid attention to, was the "oven" part is only tall enough for the pans. Had I realized that, there wouldn't be melted cheese inside of the oven right now. I can see that's going to be fun to clean up, since it will require the removal of more screws. Also, the kids had to wait 20mins each for the little things to be finished. I understand it's a light bulb and doesn't cook all that fast, but I know my kids had a hard time waiting to eat.

I may be complaining a little too much here. Or maybe I'm missing the point of the Easy Bake Oven. Anyone care to explain? I'm lost.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

SEO Work and My Plan

I'm still busy working on SEO updates for Idea Queen, and all is going EXTREMLY well. When I started, the 100+ pages at Idea Queen was seeing only 20 visitors on average a day. Now, the unique visitor count daily average is well over 100. Not bad, but still could be MUCH better. I'm not worried, since I'm not even half way done with updating pages.

Here's the main game plan:

- Each individual page is getting updated.
Each page will be updated using proper SEO techniques. I'm also updating content on each page, growing it to as much as 1000 words. The last few updated pages have fallen short of 1,000, but still isn't bad concidering they only had 100 - 200 words to start with!

- Each section is getting updated.
After every page in the section is done, I move on to the section page itself. I write a few articles that are targeted to that section, and do link exchanges for that main section.

- Article submission
I've got a folder FULL of articles to be sent out on a weekly basis. Actually, I send out two articles per week even if I write ten. That way a red flag won't be raised by Google questioning why there's all the sudden so many incoming links to this site. Plus releasing the articles a little bit at a time will ensure that I'll always have a steady flow of traffic instead of an increase then sharp drop.

- Start over
After each page is completely optimized and while articles are continuing to be released slowly, I'll start the process over again. I'll go through each page individually yet again to see how it's doing, and do more work if need be. I'll most likely make a list of pages that need more content, and beg for submissions on those particular pages. Shouldn't be too hard I don't think, especially if I have a list of 20 different pages. I'm sure everyone can submit at least SOMETHING from the list I'll have when done lol.

So there's my plan, and it's moving along quite well so far. Most of the reason for this is because of my handy dandy labled folders. I have two sitting on my desk right now - a purple titled "Idea Queen", and a red titled "Prairie Soy Candles". In the purple folder is a list of the pages that need optimized, pages that need added, and additional work that needs to be done on the site. No matter how little time I have on any day, I can grab the folder and pull something to be done every single day. This method has worked WONDERS so far.

If you are curious as to what's in the red folder....well, that's another blog post. ;) I promise I'll mention something about it soon. :D

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Swimming Lessons

I can't believe how fast my little guy is growing up. If it wasn't bad enough I'm getting ready to part with him for a full day this fall (he starts Kindergarden), he started swimming lessons yesterday. I think I was just as excited as he was when it was time to go. Since he loves school, going to "school" at the pool was extra special for him. This is something he's never done before, and actually has only been to a public pool once.

Since we live in a very small town that doesn't have a public pool, all the kids were sent to the next town over on a bus. Being a kid that lives in town a mile away from the school, riding the bus is also an adventure. I grew up in the country, so the bus was NOT a treat as I rode it every day lol. Chase on the other hand, couldn't barely wait in line to hop on that bus and go to his first swimming lesson.

There were no adults on the bus except for the bus driver, so I was a bit nervous. He made it back alright though, and I trust they had someone waiting at the pool to direct kids where to go. He made it back alright after his lessons, but minus his shirt. I should have known he would come back missing something, but at least it wasn't his shoes lol.

His lessons stretch for 2 weeks, and I've promised a day at the big pool in Newton when he's finished. That way he can show me all he learned. Although I might be sneaking over there for a few minutes to watch him today - I just can't help it because this is a big deal to us!

Of course Jillian is asking when SHE gets to go, and unfortunatly it won't be for another few years. She just starting her first year of preschool this year. I'm sure we are going to have lots of things like this, where Chase gets to do something and Jillian has to wait 2 years. But we'll survive, and Jillian seems to understand that even though she doesn't get to do it RIGHT now, she'll get to do it eventually.

My babies are growing up so fast! :(

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

PayPerPost.com - My Take

An interesting new site that connects advertisers to bloggers. I've heard talk about it, so I decided to check it out.

The concept is pretty simple.

As a blogger, you make money by posting topics of the advertisers choice and use your links. This would work similar to any other type of advertising you would sell on your site, except there's one major benefit to the advertiser - it's REAL content that's being posted around their link. The payment for the blogger might not be as much as say, an affiliate link or sold advertising space, but for the one post it's not bad.

As an advertiser, I can see this being a huge benefit. I've been really thinking about checking out the advertiser side to see what the minimums are, since I would absolutely love to have strong backward links on various blogs. Heck, even on occation when I can use a link in a comment it's makes a huge difference. To pay someone to post about my site or product in the main post of the blog - wow. Plus we are talking about REAL PEOPLE with their real opionions.

The number of offers to accept are few right now, but I do believe it's growing on a daily basis. Even right now with just a few advertisers with offers, there's still sevral different types of products and services to choose from. I'm sure someone will find at least SOMETHING to blog about based on the topics provided.

I'm giving it a shot, so we'll see how it goes. :) Wish me luck!

For details on PayPerPost, visit:

Work Done on Idea Queen

I've been busy this morning, and got a few things done on Idea Queen. The Garden Ideas
section got new content, including a new page and an ebook.

If you are busy in your garden this summer, this may be something you want to check out!


Monday, July 03, 2006

Organization - I've Finally Got It!

Anita's on vacation, and I really should be but I'm not. Tomorrow I won't be around much of course, but today I'm working as much as possible. Unfortunately, some of the things I'm working on require others and there aren't many around. :(

It's alright though, because I do have other things on my list of to-do. I actually organized my to-do list last week, and came up with a system that I believe will work the best for me. I'm good at making outlines for projects and certain things that need to be done. Unfortunately I tend to tuck those lists away in places I don't see on a regular basis. My dry erase boards are just too small for all that I outline, so most of the time that won't work either. What I came up with was a folder system.

I decided my focus has to be on two main sites - Idea Queen and Prairie Soy Candles. So now I have two main folders for the projects of each of those sites.

For Idea Queen, I've got lots of pages that need to be optimized better for the search engines. I made a list of all those pages and what needs to be done for each. I also printed out a master list of the navigation so I can check off sections as I go.

For Prairie Soy Candles, my focus is on wholesale and dropshipping. One of the ways I plan to promote our programs is with a free ebook. There are other things that need to be done as well, but they are all outlined in the folder.

I've found this to be effective already, since on a day when I only have about 3 hours of computer time I was able to check off an item from each folder. No longer am I wasting time "setting up" or figuring out where I left off on a certain project. I can just check my list and jump right in. EASY!

The other great part about this is as ideas come, I can print it off and stuff it in the folder. Should I decide to set up an "other" folder, I can do that too. This really is working out perfectly for me, and I'm much more productive because of it!