12 DAYS OF BLOGMAS DAY 8 : Starting a Side Hustle

Welcome to day 8 of Blogmas! Today we’ll be looking at how to find and start a side hustle.

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, a side hustle is:

a piece of work or a job that you get paid for doing in addition to doing your main job.

Cambridge Dictionary

It seems more and more people are starting a side hustle alongside working their full or part-time job and making that successful leap to entrepreneurship. The beauty of side hustles is that they are usually flexible, done from home and can be incorporated into your current hobbies or passions. It could also be an extension of your main job to either develop your skills or create a freelance portfolio or a way of testing out a new career path. And of course, you could have more than one side hustle – they are a great way of creating a diverse career and income, especially during unsettled times.

Tips to find your ideal side hustle

Unsure of where to start? Here are some of my top tips to find your ideal side hustle:

  • Consider your skill set

What particular skills could you offer? What do you have experience or expertise in? Is there anything you could extend to a side hustle?

  • Think about your hobbies and passions

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time? Do you have a passion for crafts or writing? If you could do anything as a career or in your day-to-day life what would you do?

  • What is your unique selling point?

If you’ve read my post on 10 Steps to Create a Personal Brand you will know that your unique selling point (or USP) is YOU! It’s your personality, attention to detail, forward-thinking attitude, customer service and/or reliability.  It’s what you can offer that no one else can.

Side hustle ideas

Ok so you’ve got an idea of what you could offer and what makes you and your experiences unique. Here are 35 ideas for side hustles to get you started:

  • Interior design/decorator
  • Tutoring or coaching
  • Personal trainer
  • Franchise consultant – For example The Body Shop at Home or Avon
  • Wellbeing or life coach
  • Create an online course
  • Dog walking or grooming
  • Sell your products online – You can sell physical or digital products on platforms like Etsy
  • Refurbish furniture
  • Babysitting/Nanny
  • Start a blog
  • Party planning
  • Catering
  • Photographer
  • Real estate – renovations, flipping houses, renting out property or room or running a holiday home
  • Handyman {or woman!}
  • Digital products
  • Delivery driver
  • Local tour guide
  • Graphic or web design
  • Writing – freelance, ghost-writer, editing
  • Social media management
  • YouTube
  • Write and publish an eBook
  • Mystery shopping
  • Cleaning
  • Home organisation
  • Teach a language or an interpreter
  • Personal shopper
  • Affiliate marketing
  • Extra in a movie/programme
  • Marketing focus groups
  • House sitter
  • Virtual Assistant
  • Create a smartphone app

Where to start?

You’ve thought about your skills and passions and have an idea for a potential side hustle. What next? Here are a few things to consider and get you started:

  • How much time can you commit?

Most side hustles take commitment and consistency and can, initially at least, take up a lot of time. If you are working a full or part-time job and/or have family or children to care for you need to consider when you can work on your side hustle without impacting negatively on your day-to-day life. How much time will your side hustle take? Is it something you could do in the evenings or weekends? Draw up a draft schedule to see how you can balance your jobs as well as leaving time for yourself, family and friends.

  • What do you need to get started?

Do you need to create stock? Will you need specific tools or equipment? Do you need to create a website or social media account?

  • Is there a financial commitment?

Stock costs, website subscription, insurance, accountancy package – it’s easy for costs to add up either as an initial investment or on a monthly or annual basis. Make sure you tot up the potential costs to ensure your side hustle is worth the outlay; noting some side hustles can take time to create a decent income {for example YouTube or affiliate marketing etc.}

  • Market research

Is your side hustle something people need? Chances are you can put your own unique spin on something but conducting a bit of market research is a great way of testing the waters to see what uptake may be like. Creating a simple questionnaire in Google Forms is a great way to circulate and collate market research.

  • Finding your ideal clients/customers

You have your product or idea. You know it’s something people are interested. So how do you find potential clients or customers? Take some time to think about who your ideal client/customer would be – What age range are they? What do they like to do? Where do they hang out online? How will they interact with you {via your blog, Instagram account, in person or in print?}

  • Consider a strategic plan/goals

I’ve always found it helpful to create a simple strategic plan of action and set of goals. To put it simply a strategic plan considers where you are, where you want to be and how you can get there. Setting short, medium and {if you can} long-term goals {even if these change} is also a great start to thinking how you’d like to progress your side hustle or the initial steps you need to take.

Ellie x


12 Days of Blogmas Day 7 : The Sunday Basket

Welcome to day 7 of Blogmas! Do you have that pile {or piles} of paperwork lying around that doesn’t really have a home to live in? Stuff that clutters up your surfaces but if you put away will likely be forgotten about? I know I do. And it’s taken me the majority of my adult life to finally find a solution. The Sunday Basket!

I first heard about this concept from The Minimal Mom on YouTube. As some of you may know I am a HUGE fan of my “bung-it basket” and this system triggered another one of those “ah ha!” moments for me. The “Sunday Basket” was created by Lisa Woodruff from Organize 365 to help organise household paperwork. And the system is as simple as it sounds – a place {or “basket”} where your paperwork lives and gets dealt with every single Sunday {or whatever day of the week you decide}. It’s a routine which creates a simple “command centre” which allows you to locate papers when you need them with the idea that eventually the time you spend sorting and actioning the items within your Sunday Basket becomes less leaving you more time to do the things you want.

Here I’m going to share with you how to set up your own Sunday Basket and and how to make it work for YOU:

Setting up your Sunday Basket

There are loads of great examples of Sunday Baskets on Pinterest – all you need is some kind of box {it doesn’t have to be fancy} and a simple filing system – labelled plastic wallets, a concertina file etc. Then collect up all the random papers, post, lists etc. cluttering up your space and put them in the basket. You could also use it to store your diary, a pencil case, a notebook and/or your budget information {like these FREE budget resources}.

Establish your system

On Sunday {or whichever day you decide} sort your papers into actionable categories – for example, to action this week, this month, to file, to pay etc. then dedicate some time to completing those tasks which need urgent attention {whether it’s half an hour or an hour a week}. Establish your system by re-visiting it every week ensuring those papers which need urgent attention are dealt with during your “Sunday Basket hour” and everything else is moved into the correct folder.

Expand your system

Start using your Sunday Basket to store projects or ideas – all in separate files to ensure you keep coming back to them for review. Use your “Sunday Basket hour” to complete your weekly meal plan or review your diary for the week.

Create a “time will tell” folder – this is something The Minimal Mom suggested which I think is a really great idea to store things that don’t require action – for example it may be a letter letting you know about some upcoming road closures etc. which you don’t necessarily need to do someting with but want to keep around for reference until that work has been completed.

What goes in my Sunday Basket

For my Sunday Basket I’ve been using a Kallax storage box. Inside I have a concertina file with coloured plastic wallets labelled “this week”, “this month”, “time will tell” and “Budgets”. I will also add in projects etc. over time. I also keep a notebook and my paper diary {which I am starting to phase out use of in favour of my digital planner – find out more here} and some post-its to jot down thoughts and ideas. Every week during my “Sunday Basket hour” I then gather up my various white boards {find my FREE monthly and weekly planner templates here} and update them with the week ahead.

This is a process I’m still refining to make work for ME but I’ve definately found it really helpful in dedicating not only a space for all those loose bits of paper and notes but to also sit and dedicate some time to keeping on top of my life admin.

What would you put in your Sunday Basket? I’d love to know if this is a system you find useful!

Ellie x


12 Days of Blogmas Day 6 : Setting Boundaries – I Can Do Anything Not Everything

Welcome to day 6 of Blogmas! A wise friend once said to me:

Zero plans days are the best. I try to have more of these days than not. At least two days in the week and one weekend day I try to leave with nothing organised.

I have always tried to book out “free” or “zero plans” time into our weekly calendar just simply as an attempt to create some kind of healthy boundaries and prevent overwhelm; however this can be easier said than done. During the first 2020 lockdown I wrote a guest post for Isabella and Us about resetting our expectations and learning to take life a bit slower once things get back to “normal” and now that restrictions are lifting it’s scary just how quickly our calendars and lives become booked up again.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m loving being able to spend time with loved ones and to be able to get out and about restriction free but I’m also feeling that familiar pull of overwhelm that comes with trying to fit everyone and everything in.

You can do anything, but not everything

I have this quote in my office as a reminder that however awesome you may be {and yes, you are awesome} there is a limit to the number of plates a person can juggle at any one time. With the pressure to be the perfect wife, mother, friend and colleague as well as keeping on top of the housework, money, world news and the washing {agh the washing}; keeping everyone happy, being available for playdates/meetings/events, look good {or at least clean}, keep fit, have a generally Instagram worthy life, plus remembering to pick your kids up on time, it can all get a bit much.  

Saying “slow down” or “take things off your plate” is all very well and good but actually setting firm {healthy} boundaries can be really hard! Boundaries come in all shapes and sizes, from switching off from work to spend time with your family and asking your family member to only drop in unannounced during certain times to letting your child play on their iPad for 10 minutes and only replying to emails once a day.

Life dips and flows. Circumstances and priorities change. And learning both how and which boundaries can benefit your current situation could have a huge impact on your wellbeing and feelings of overwhelm.

What are healthy boundaries?

Healthy boundaries are limits you set to, essentially, safeguard yourself and your time. They can be set in both your personal and professional life and dictate how you interact with people or environments. Boundaries help teach our kids right from wrong and how to respond to situations. They can create confidence and feelings of empowerment!

Boundaries can also offer protection – especially coming out of lockdown where a lot of us felt safe within our little bubble. Boundaries can protect you from:

  • what people say
  • people who make you feel insecure or unsafe
  • activities which make you feel undervalued or overwhelmed

How do I set healthy boundaries?

First of all, try to think about where you would like {or need} more limits in your life. Then work on understanding WHY you need these limits and what makes them important to you {this will help make you more confident when putting your boundaries in place}. Think about how you could make these limits a reality – how can you fulfil your goal to be home for bedtime 4 nights a week or what things, people or events no longer serve you? {Sounds harsh I know but setting boundaries for toxic relationships can be incredibly powerful!} Remember it is your right to create healthy boundaries – you are not being negative or rude. You are ensuring your own cup is filled. You are practicing self-care. You are protecting your time and priorities and being your best self!

Sometimes it’s hard to accept you can’t do everything. I know that some of my friends consider my schedule to be incredibly busy and that may be true but it’s partly because I know I need pockets of time for “zero plans” and my priorities and focus can only go so far. Sometimes I’m trying so hard NOT to be busy to get in some time for self-care or just to get on top of that bloomin’ washing!

As I’ve got older I’ve definitely got more precious with my time. Where I used to stress about letting people down I now am quite happy to be honest and say actually I can’t be bothered or that doesn’t work for me or even I just need a day at home to get some stuff done and love bomb my kids or just regress into my little cave for some downtime. Like anything, creating boundaries takes practice and there will be times you need to be firm. There will also be times you need to be flexible and responsive to situations and of course boundaries will naturally change over time.

I can do anything, but not everything. And that’s ok with me 🙂

Ellie x


12 Days of Blogmas Day 5 : From Full-Time Employee to Full-Time Entrepreneur {Part 2 of 2}

Welcome to day 5 of Blogmas 2022! Today we are continuing day 2’s blogmas post “from full-time employee to full-time entrepreneur” – catch up with part 1 here.

Following on from starting to think about becoming fully self-employed in the summer of 2021 I started working with a personal and business development coach who really helped me not only start to map out what a successful business could look like but also to have the confidence to make my ideas a reality!

I launched my first online live workshop on Facebook live in September 2021 – Clerking with Confidence – for just £9.99 per delegate. Following a positive reception, I decided to continue and create a range of live workshops for people to sign up to. I started giving out freebie resources to get people’s attention and building a community and email list.

I continued to work 2 days a week for my employer plus my other couple of clerking clients. I was then contacted about becoming a trainer for a Local Authority and started delivering training sessions on their behalf. Around the same time, I connected with an online governance platform provider (GVO) who I have now been activity collaborating with for over a year! I was starting to build networks and Pro Clerking was starting to get noticed not only locally but also nationally (plus I had one lady join me from Qatar so technically you could say internationally…..)

By the end of 2021 I started conversations with additional potential clients including my current employer who I asked if they’d consider taking me on as a self-employed clerk. I also took the leap and started putting feelers out for a physical Governance Professional’s Annual Planner which was then launched in June 2022 ready for the 2022-23 academic year.

By the end of the 2021-22 academic year I was set up to go fully self-employed. My employer had agreed to a contract with Pro Clerking for independent clerking services and I had another four clients lined up in addition to those already under contract.

I took the whole 6 weeks of summer off, just dabbling in a bit of background setting things up here and there, and felt like the world was at my feet heading into 2022-23 as a full-time entrepreneur with my own business. That was my pinch-me moment – to be honest I don’t think sunk in!

4 months later and the steep learning curves continue – from managing multiple clients, to financial bookkeeping and everything in between but I can confidently say that however hard it can be at times – this has been one of the best things I’ve ever done – from being my own boss and having the opportunity to more than double my income while working flexibly around my family – Pro Clerking has quite literally been life changing. And there’s lots of exciting things to come……

And you know what? You can absolutely do it too 🙂

Are you interested in finding out more about what being a clerk in UK schools looks like? Contact me at contact@proclerking.co.uk for more information!

Ellie x





12 Days of Blogmas Day 4 : 10 Things No-one Told You About Having Twins

Welcome to day 4 of Blogmas 2022! Today we’re re-visiting one of my favorite tongue-in-cheek posts from back in May 2021 – 10 things no-one told you about having twins 🙂

As a first time mum of twins it became clear very quickly that I was woefully unprepared for what lay ahead. It was the epitome of a baptism of fire and learning as you go. You go to the antenatal classes {only to be told 80% of it doesn’t apply to you be used you’re having twins}, read all the books and find some twin mummy peers {shout out to the Cheltenham twins club and Kingfisher Twins Club!} but alas, nothing can really prepare you for what lies ahead.

You’ve finally got the feeding sussed, you’ve managed 2 hours of sleep and can successfully change a poonarmi nappy one handed. But here are 10 things no-one warned you about having twins. {Disclaimer – this is meant as a {mostly} “tongue in cheek” post which is based upon my personal experience of having twins – photos of which I’ve included at the end of this post, because quite frankly I think they’re super cute!}

1. It’s impossible to go to the shop with out be asked “are they twins?”

You will quickly come to learn that people are fascinated by multiples and {especially} baby twins act like superhuman magnets subconsciously inviting everyone and their dog to come and take a peek. You may want to consider handing out flyers – “Yes they are twins. No they’re not a boy and a girl. No they’re not identical but yes they do look very similar. No I don’t know how I do it and yes I do have my hands full”. And not forgetting the good old “double trouble!”, “my sisters, dogs, cousins had twins” or “oh I always wanted twins!”

In all honesty I’ve never minded people coming to coo over or ask about my twins but there are times you just want to buy a fu*king pint of milk without being stopped 20 times and sometimes you just have to smile and wave boys, smile and wave. I once saw a colleague in Sainsbury’s who started happily chatting to me only to be greeted with hysterical shrieks of “we’ve lost tigger!” – not my finest moment I’ll admit.

2. People will ask completely inappropriate questions

After the whole “are they twins?” conversation starter you will be shocked at the amount of times I’ve been asked by a total stranger {and usually, funnily enough, in Sainsburys – this is not an ad I promise!} how they were conceived or born. Now this may be something you chat about with your gal pals but is it really a normal topic of conversation to be having down the biscuit isle? Would they like a diagram? The simple answer would be “does it matter?” Like I’m going to happily disclose ah yes I had sex with my husband, actually we went through years of IVF treatment or they’re adopted thank you so much for asking. I have actually been known to say I don’t know as they’re not mine just to escape…..

3. The first year {at least} is about surviving

Being a new mum is HARD. Having a newborn is HARD. Being a new mum of multiples is, well, seemingly impossible at times. The logistics of having two {or more} babies to care for on top of the general exhaustion of being “on it” constantly mean you barely remember your name most days let alone what time that next health visitor appointment is supposed to be. You may have heard people talking about the 4th trimester or pulling up the drawbridge after you have a baby. Which is essentially shutting out the world for a bit and letting yourself and your family adjust to your new addition{s}. The pressure of feeling like you need to prepare for visitors or keep up with the Jones’ is totally ridiculous and {in my humble opinion} new parents should be actively encouraged and supported to take some time out.

Even after some kind of “normality” resumes I would say that first year with twins is going to be your biggest adjustment and more likely to be about surviving {rather than thriving}. Not only will your babies change and develop faster than a hare on heat within that first year, your whole world will change with it. Having a baby or babies is a huge adjustment and caring for multiple babies at the same time 24/7 is on a whole different level. In all honesty I can hardly remember that first 12 months to the point I think I’ve actually blanked it out of my memory. I look back at photos and I just look like I’m on a totally different planet!

4. You will {probably} feel like there are things you are missing out on

Ok so granted not everyone’s experience is going to be the same and some people are very lucky to have help with their babies which enables them to do lots of lovely things. My hubby is a chef and my family and friends all worked full time which meant I was {literally} left holding the babies. My way of dealing with this was to not let it stop me taking the boys out and about but even I had to admit there were certain places or activities we simply couldn’t take part in.

Take swimming for example. A very popular activity for mums/dads and babies. And whilst all my new singleton mummy friends were joining aqua tots and alike I, to put it simply, couldn’t. This was probably the one thing I really felt we missed out on to be fair. Then there were baby groups. It took a while for me to find a baby group where I felt comfortable. Groups can be very cliquey and having twins singled {ha!} me out. Thankfully I started going to twins club which was A LIFE SAVER. Not only did people just “get it” but the support and friendships I made there will last a lifetime.

5. You will go through every length to ensure your twins are treated equally

….from the same sized carrots to the amount of cuddles from Grandma. But then equally you will also want them to be treated as individuals rather than “the twins”. My boys are very similar in a lot of ways and have very similar interests which pretty much means we buy two of everything {more on this in a moment!} As they are getting older their interests will inevitably start to change but at the moment they are still very drawn to the same thing, partly due to simply liking it and probably partly due to the fact they’ve always done everything together. Over lockdown we got more opportunity to spend one on one time with the boys which was really lovely. Different parts of their personality come out more when they’re apart. Noah is hilarious and Ollie is so kind and helpful. It’s a completely different dynamic for all involved.

6. You assume you need two of everything

Moving on from my last point, when you are preparing for the arrival of your babies you may assume you need two of everything when in actual fact that’s not always the case. Of course you will need two sets of the basics – car seats, clothes, {ultimately} cribs/cots {although a lot of twins share when they are very little}, high chairs and the like, but when it comes to “extras” my advice would be to start with one. One baby bath, one swing, one set of bottles {until you know which bottles your babies will take!} and one baby wipe warmer {yes this is a thing}. Basically, don’t fork out for everything and especially not two of them unless you feel you particularly want or need to.

Then come birthdays and celebrations. Parties in particular can become a bit of a logistical nightmare. Do you have one or two parties? How many cakes? Different themes? Then come the questions of do people buy 1 gift for each child or a shared one? Do we really need two giant car garages but is it unfair to expect them to share?! Do you buy them the same gifts or different and risk the inevitable outburst of “he got more than me!” Fun times.

7. Your finances will inevitably take a hit

I’ve heard lots of people comment on the fact the cost of twins is basically the same as the cost of having two single children. Whilst this is probably very accurate what they fail to acknowledge is that when you have multiples you have to pay out all at once. And not only are you buying double the amount of nappies, formula or forking out for nursery fees and school uniform, trips and dinners but you are also thinking ahead to how on earth you will finance their first cars, university tuition fees and such AT THE SAME TIME. It’s a popular saying that you can’t ever really “afford” children. Well think of multiples as maxing out all your credit cards at once. You’re welcome.

8. A lot of doorways are not wide enough for double buggies

Ok this may sound like a strange one but you will not believe how much small doorways became the bane of my life with a {fairly compact} double buggy and how much time I spent trying to get through said doorways with sleeping or crying babies or rampaging toddlers. I’m definitely guilty of executing the “half collapse of the buggy” {with the children on board} technique to save having to carry two babies AND get the fu*king buggy through the door just to pick up a parcel which was delivered when I WAS AT HOME {of course I’m not bitter or anything}.

Joking {not joking} aside these obstacles will either become your nemesis or you will up your game for the challenge. Steps to get into the village hall, you got it. Heavy self closing door, no problem. I am a twin mummy, hear me roar! {or at least swear profusely under my breath}.

9. The cuteness overload opportunities are pretty much endless

What’s more adorable than a baby in a cute outfit? TWO babies in cute outfits! And let’s be honest, your kids’ Halloween costume, Christmas card or Easter pics are gonna be way cuter {not that I’m biased or anything!}

10. You are stronger than you ever knew

Singleton parents will think you’re the dogs bollo**s and wonder how on earth you do it. But the truth is you ARE amazing and you do it because not only do you love your tiny tornados more than life itself but also because you have no choice but to get on with it. There will be times when you think you can’t do it {trust me, I’ve been there} but you are stronger and more resilient than you ever thought and there are people/groups out there who will understand and support you.

One thing I really struggled with is the fact I wanted to be able to do it all myself, and do it well, and it took me a long time to realise that’s it’s ok to ask for help or even to admit that actually sometimes it’s all a bit sh*t. People will understand more than you think and for those who don’t, we’ll {again} smile and wave boys, smile and wave {then flip them the bird, metaphorically of course}.

Plus a bonus point:

{In case you haven’t already noticed} – you will find yourself referring to your friends’ kids as singletons 😅 {and of course the fact that your twins will be the best thing you ever accomplished, and you wouldn’t have it any other way}.



12 Days of Blogmas Day 3 : Top Tips from My Dermatologist

Welcome to day 3 of Blogmas 2022!

Last month I booked a consultation with a private dermatologist at ProSkin Clinic and Health UK. I’ve struggled with my skin for years – from my early days of puberty and throughout adulthood. I’ve tried lotions and potions, changes in diet, oral prescriptions from my GP and everything in between. I also discovered I had a condition called Dermatillomania a type of OCD presenting as excessive skin picking. But nothing worked and after a particularly rough episode with my skin I decided it was time to take action.

Examining the extensive list of products and services offered by ProSkin I didn’t have a clue where to start. Booking a consultation was straightforward, the clinic welcoming and the dermatologist knowledgeable and understanding. Not only did I come out with a personalised skin plan including topical products, supplements and treatments plus a promise of support if things weren’t working – but I also picked up some useful tips I could put into practice straight away.

Here are some of them:

  1. Double cleanse in the evening – this may be obvious but I had never even considered washing my face twice in the evening to make sure I get rid off all the make-up and grim built up during the day. This simple task has already been a game changer for my skin!
  2. Use products and supplements with vitamin A – Vitamin A (also known as retinol) helps to normalise skin cells. This essential nutrient needs to be consistently replaced daily and can be applied directly to the skin alongside supplementation – just be wary – some stronger retinols can irritate the skin so always start with a lower %.
  3. Use body oil in the shower – my greasy skin is actually really dry (who knew!) which can cause dullness, irritation and congestion. Using something as simple as baby oil at the end of your shower is an easy and quick way to ensure your skin stays regularly moistirised.
  4. Feed your skin from the inside out – good nutrition is a hugely important factor in maintaining optimal skin integrity and healing. Taking a bespoke supplement will help bridge any nutritional gap to help us maintain a balance. From probiotics to vitamins and minerals – there’s a lot of options out there, which is where a dermatologist can help recommend a bespoke option for you to try.

My particular skin plan includes all of the above plus recommended treatments – all of which I’m really excited to get started with! Watch this space 🙂



12 Days of Blogmas Day 2 : From Full-Time Employee to Full-Time Entrepreneur {Part 1 of 2}

Welcome to day 2 of Blogmas 2022!

As of 1st September 2022 I officially became a full-time entrepreneur with my business Pro Clerking.


Now THAT was a real pinch-me moment! But how did I get there?

To be honest, it was kind of by accident. I never set out to work for myself and running a business had never been pride of place on my vision board. Yet here we are!

It all started after I found out I was pregnant for a second time with P. I reduced my working days to 4 days a week after I had the boys and was now considering halving that again to working just 2 days a week once baby no. 3 arrived. When I was around 14 weeks pregnant my mum sent me a job advert for a local school clerk to governors – which was basically what I did in my day job – and I decided to apply to help buffer my planned pay drop once I returned from maternity leave.

The role was part-time with flexible, term-time only, work-from-home hours plus they agreed to give me up to a year of unpaid maternity leave given I was already 3 months pregnant.

At this point I had 2 employers – working 4 days a week in my day job and an additional 3-5 hours a week in my clerking role. I then took a year off with P and returned to work in the autumn of 2019. It was then another local school contacted me to see if I could fill their clerking vacancy before a new appointment started and shortly after a 3rd school got in touch.

Having dropped my day job down to 2 days I felt I could take on the extra hours around childcare plus the boys would be starting school in the autumn. I decided the best way to move forward was to become partly self-employed. I asked the original school I clerked for whether they’d consider taking me on as a freelance clerk rather than an employee. They happily agreed and a few days later I came up with the name Pro Clerking, designed a logo using a freebie App, found a template service contract and got busy researching self-employment for dummies. I used my skills and experience gained from the last 10 years of working in administration, finance, training and clerking and created my own systems, resources and templates to use for clients.

Badda bing badda boom. Pro Clerking was officially open for business.

Then wham bam thank you mam. Covid hit. Between homeschooling, a 1 year old and just general pandemic craziness I struggled to keep up. I reached out for help and found a virtual clerk to sub-contract a school / client to for the rest of that academic year.

Working from home during that time was the first time I started to think about becoming fully self-employed. I’m the first to admit I struggled going back to “normal” office hours post covid. It wasn’t the job, it was the desire to work on my own terms. To have the flexibility to choose my own hours around my young family and be my own boss…….

Find out more in part 2 coming soon…..



12 Days of Blogmas Day 1 : Welcome to Blogmas 2022!

Welcome to Blogmas 2022! Over the next 12 working days, Business Health and Home will publish a new blog post covering all your favorite topics in business – health – and of course home!

I’ll give you a sneak peek into my journey from being a full-time employee to a full-time entrepreneur, what happened when I moved my family of FIVE in with my parents, top skin tips from my dermatologist plus so much more!

PLUS this year we are giving you the opportunity to be entered into an exclusive giveaway to win a range of goodies from the new 2023 BH&H (yet to be released!) range – watch this space for updates!

I can’t wait to get started – see you tomorrow for the first post!



Autumn GYST Days 🍂

After my first 7 weeks of being fully self-employed, lord knows I need a couple of get-your-shit-together {aka GYST} days! And what better way to document my plan {and progress} then to brush off the old blogging skills.

Just to set the scene, I technically went fully self-employed with Pro Clerking at the start of August. Working with schools means my job ebbs and flows with the academic year and, much like any other education-based business, the first term seems to be especially bonkers. Of course, I went self-employed to work less and be more flexible around my family. But ended up working MORE hours and running around like a headless chicken to keep up!

So now it’s the start of half term, I’ve stuck my out-of-office on (even though I have every intention of doing a couple of days’ work) and we’ve given the kids a good run around in the fresh air. Everyone’s quiet for 5 mins and it’s time to make my GYST plan. This will be broken down into 3 areas – maintain, prepare and care for a realistic and simple, but high impact, solution to my current brain fog.

So let’s get started…..

1. Maintain

  • Clear your inbox – I bought the 7-day pass from Leave Me Alone for just £5 to easily unsubscribe from over 50 unused email subscriptions!
  • Wash all bedcovers
  • Clean out car
  • Clean out bag / purse
  • Clear your space – I’m focusing on my desk and work files
  • Make important appointments – for us, the dentist and optician
  • Update calendar / diary
  • Check finances

2. Prepare

  • Power planning – schedule out the week ahead with rest, tasks, events and appointments
  • Meal plan and prep
  • Prep clothes for the week

3. Care

  • Check-in with your goals
  • Set aside time for reading
  • Mini-pamper – for me, face mask, hair mask, de-fuzz, eyebrows, nails
  • Clear your thoughts – brain dump, journal, talk to a friend
  • Set aside time for exercise – for me, daily stretching and a dog walk

In reality, most of these actions are going to happen over at least a couple of days but I think they sound very doable and know will help make me feel like I have my shit more together before the next school term of craziness!

Download your free GYST day checklist here.

What do / would you have on your GYST day list?

Ellie x

Simply Organised | Series 1 Episode 4 : Moving House + Organised Packing

The Simply Organised podcast aims to explore the world of simplifying and help you create realistic organisation systems in business Health and home. Being simply organised doesn’t mean being perfect or minimalist. It’s about using what you already have and creating systems to help take back control and live life on your own terms.

Listen now on Buzzsprout or Apple Podcasts

Series 1 | Episode 4 : Moving House + Organised Packing

Welcome to episode 4 of Simply Organised – the podcast that helps you create realistic organisation systems for everyday life In business, health and home.

This episode includes a bit of a life update about moving house, my aim to purge between 70-80% of our belongings and my new “organised packing” mantra. 

As always I’d love to hear from you and I hope you enjoy this episode of Simply Organised 🙂

Ellie xx


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