Judith Bond is our latest guest blogger. Here she shares her thoughts on how she is able to run her cake business more efficiently and joyfully by using our Busy B diary and planners. Judith is a bespoke Cake Maker from North Wales and is the owner of Judith Bond Cakes based in Llandudno. As well as Wedding cakes, Judith specialises in corporate events and family celebrations and has customers all along the North Wales coast and into Chester. Judith is an enthusiastic photographer and member of Welshot Imaging Academy, keen networker with Mingle for Business and Network She; and she loves writing her blog charting her delightful adventures in cake. Her work has been published in Cupcake Heaven Magazine and she is currently featuring in a Welsh Government advertising campaign. We are delighted that Judith has joined us and hope you enjoy her blog. You can find out more about Judith on her website www.judithbondcakes.co.uk or follow her on Facebook or Twitter and Instagram.
The #busylife of a Cake Decorator
You might think running a cake business is all buttercream and smiles. Well there is a lot of buttercream, and it makes me very happy but there’s plenty more to it than that. I started Judith Bond Cakes in 2013 with my very first wedding cake. It was my passion for creating beautiful cakes that inspired me to start my own business, but it’s definitely my background in organisation and planning that has kept my feet on the ground and helped me to build a solid business and a brand that is recognised and loved in my community.
If you’ve chosen self-employment and you work from home, you’ll understand me when I say it’s the best thing and the hardest thing all at the same time.
It’s the best thing because I get to plan my own day and do what I really love. It’s the hardest thing because it’s often lonely and I’m in charge of everything. There are no departments – it’s just me! Before embarking on my cake adventure, I spent 20 years as a PA / Office Manager, organising Chief Executives, Chairmen and Politicians. I was an employee with a clearly defined role and the security of a paycheck at the end of the month. Now I am the Owner, Director, Head of Production, Quality Control, and Delivery, Head of Legal and Licensing, Head of Marketing and PR, Chief Photographer and Blogger. Basically everything – thank goodness I’m a multi-tasker.
Finding a diary that suits my often crazy life has never been easy and I struggle every year to find something I like. I have always been a “diary and pen” sort of girl and for years I have had a week-to-view diary and started the year by drawing a vertical pencil line down the centre of each page to separate meetings/appointments from jobs/tasks. This takes quite a while and I’ve never managed to find a diary that quite works for me – that is, until now.
This year I have discovered the Busy B Busy Life Diary, and my life is transformed.
I’ve been a big fan of Busy B for a number of years and family and friends have received all sorts of stationery goodies for many a Christmas. They make the most beautiful stationery – notebooks, diaries, sticker pads, planners – and all so well thought-out and practical.
The ‘Oh so clever’ people at Busy B have devised their Busy Life Diary with dual scheduling – music to my ears and exactly what I need. Every week has a double page spread for the week with 2 sections for each day, and a handy ‘Reminders’ column at the side of each page for little notes.
It’s perfect. Now I will have my meetings - cake consultations, client catch-ups, networking evenings on the left, and baking/decorating tasks, blog scheduling, ordering days, on the right. At the front of the diary are monthly planners which I’ll use for my social media planning and newsletter publications – as well as the occasional much needed holiday!
Throughout the diary are handy double page reminder pages which I’ll be using for calculating cake sizes and prices and 4 deep storage pockets which will be the ideal spot for stashing business receipts. There’s a generous ‘Notes’ section at the back and ‘Contacts’ pages for jotting down phone numbers in a hurry. Did I mention that I’m totally in love with the design – there’s a choice of stripe or floral, so I opted for floral. It’s a modern flower design in gorgeous shades of purple and pink, and blends beautifully with my business logo. It has a pen loop (essential in my opinion) and an elastic holder to keep the pages together and avoid creasing – also essential in a handbag as big as mine.
But there’s more …
I’ve treated myself to the matching To Do Notes for my handbag, appropriately named ‘To do or not to do’. It has the same beautiful cover as the diary, but is a little smaller and contains 2 tear-off pads for lists and ideas. As a regular blogger, I see ideas for new blogs everywhere I go, and this notepad is ideal for jotting down thoughts while they’re fresh in my mind.
The great news is that my new diary and notebook combined are smaller than last year’s diary so that’s less weight on my already struggling right shoulder.
To complete my 2017 year of glorious organisation, I have the Busy B Weekly Planner Pad – floral, of course. It will sit on my lovely white desk to the right of my (white) mouse pad and give me an instant ‘sight’ of what needs to be achieved that week. I already use a similar planner but this new one is more thoughtfully designed, with more space to write, is far prettier and it comes with 2 adorable magnets to match the floral theme.
For me, the only way to get through life is to be organised.
Whatever kind of job you do, whether you work from a skyscraper or your kitchen table – you need great planning tools to keep your life in check. However large or small your family - you need a handy portable diary to keep your work in order and to avoid missing a rugby match or a music lesson.
Planning and scheduling is a joy for me. There’s nothing I love more than to sit down with a clean page, a set of coloured pens and a large cup of coffee. I know we’re all wired differently and you might find scheduling dull and uninspiring – if that’s you, I promise you this… if you treat yourself to a Busy B diary, and a great notebook and perhaps a pen that you really love – you will start to feel the joy. Or at the very least you’ll be a little more organised and able to live your life instead of worrying about what you’ve forgotten.
Big thanks to the lovely people at Busy B for inviting me to guest blog for them. I am truly honoured and hope you will enjoy my thoughts.
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