What Fuels You?

whatfuelsyou

Aside from caffeine, right? Of course, that is going thru your veins.

But what gets you out of bed and even head to said coffee? For me, it is my son. I became a SAHM one month before my son was born. I wanted to get ready to be at home and nest and get everything ready. Flash forward to having to buy a bassinet 2 weeks into Ben being born haha.

I knew I wanted to stay home with him. What I didn’t know, was how lonely I was going to be. My husband worked long hours, my own mom lived 100 miles away at the time and my mother in law had a job and my sister in law had her own two kids. So I was starting this very new life and I felt really disconnected.
I worked in retail for a LONG time where every single day I was interacting with people, that said more often than not, they were assholes but still, I was interacting.
Humans are social. I am loud, but shy, but social. I am also the random person who may muster the courage to compliment a stranger. And seeing that stranger LIGHT UP, after a small honest compliment, lights me up! Is there a job where I can compliment people all day? If there isn’t, there should be.

Ok, so how could I interact with people from home with a baby? Grocery store? Sure where I look like a zombie and trying not to scream at screaming baby. Eh? maybe not.

Life and the universe has indeed given me the resources to do just what I wanted. I am connecting to people through designing fun, inappropriate and encouraging decals for mugs.
So here is my struggle this week, be careful what you ask for right? So I have this way to connect to people but I have also attached a financial burden to this because it is a shop and takes money to run. But the root of that is this fear that if  I am not making money, I am not doing it right or like I am failing.
But REALLY, every post, every like on IG except the bots, those people are connecting with something. Maybe they are even smiling at something I have posted.
THAT is what fuels me. That is what I was yearning for when I was so alone.

The financial stuff is me having to have self-discipline and being smart with my money because here I am at 28 and
still am an idiot with my money.

Connecting with people and making people feel good, that is what fuels me. I do it easily every day with my husband and my son. I am a nurturer first, a profit-er last. I put this pressure on myself and it gets so bad that I feel like everyone else is putting that pressure on too which is Bullshit.
If you are stuck, I suggest going back to what fuels you? What keeps you going? How do remind yourself of that when shit gets tough? Please tell me in the comments!
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Out with old, In with the New

Hello Hello Hello!

How are you? Happy New Year! I can still say that right? It is still January after all.

Thank you for reading and thank you for being here. I started this blog around the time I was starting to find myself again after being a stay at home mom for so long.

I was dipping my feet back into photography and doing product photography for shops.

But something was still missing for me, for my creativity. I was given the amazing opportunity to try something totally new and different and fell in love with it.

I started upcycling mugs and bowls with funny phrases and affirmations and some seriously inappropriate things as well, because we cannot take life too seriously, right?

I opened an Etsy shop in August 2016 and have been having so much fun meeting people and making custom items. Seeing people love my mugs and designs has been the exact boost I needed in life. It has made me feel truly fulfilled to be contributing financially to my family by paying for my sons’ school tuition! Me, a homemaker with a passion for fonts, paying for my sons’ school!

It has been quite a ride and I have learned a lot but only an inkling of everything there is to learn!

I hope 2017 has been great for you so far!

Warning: Feeling Sappy!

Hello, hello Hey-lloh.

Things have been slow on the blog, there goes a tumbleweed.

But things have been picking up in life!

I opened an Etsy shop, my son started school a couple weeks ago, 5 days a week! Crazy. So now I drop him off at 9:15, run to the post office, come home make an order and pick him up at 12pm! And do it all over again.

He LOVES school you guys. The way home, all I hear, is More School, More School.. over and over and over. Until we watch and finish the Dinosaur movie and then it is More Dinosaur movie, More Dinosaur movie…

Anyways, with him starting school and loving it and I am feeling about the Etsy shop, I am really hoping this becomes a substantial endeavor. But it also makes me think that I do not have very long before Ben really is in school full time and that he is growing up. He already doesn’t need me to rock him while we sing songs before bed. He just jumps right up, hugs his stuffed turtle and Grover and listens to me sing, probably thinking, why are you still singing, Mom?

Tonight we watched the Avengers. We had to fast forward all the times the Hulk was not shown because my son was just saying More Hulk More Hulk. Which was fine because we had to fast forward a lot of the violent stuff too.

I say all this because I do not want to forget. When we first moved to GA and Ben was sleeping in his crib in his own room, struggled with bedtime a little bit. But when we started to read books and sing songs things got better. But then I introduced a “wind down conversation” if you will. We just talk about everything we did that day, what we ate, who we saw, where we went, what we watched, played etc.

And then one day, I made up a poem. Right off the fly and no sleep probably. But I have not skipped saying one day since. And now, at 2.5, my son says it with me. Now that I am not holding him while singing or talking, I see in his face how he immediately started to calm down and long blink his little eyes as soon as he hears the first line.

We all make-up shit for our kids. Songs, dances, poems, whatever. I just don’t want to forget it, or, he forgets it because I love him and it’s our thing and I will probably incorporate into a speech at his wedding! I’m not crying!

I typed it up and here it is. Maybe your baby might like it!

Who knows, babies are so weird.

bensgoodnightpoem

My bedtime poem to my son every night.

That Big Green Ugly Monster

And no, I do not mean Hulk, who my son loves right now.

Money.

The hardest part for me as a stay at home mom, besides my son who I am convinced it trying to drive me mad, is money.

When I was first home with my son, it was easy because I was scared to leave the house. True Story.

Now my son is 2, almost, and we are always leaving the house. Most times not for free stuff. Its grocery shopping or yardsale-ing. We love yard sales.

I have been told a million times you are buying stuff you need, for you and the house and that family.

Well what about when it is stuff I may not need? Like stuff for me?

The look on non-financially dependent people’s faces when I mention “I am scared to spend money” is priceless. And I remember in my unattached days, not having a care in the world about spending. It may seem downright crazy to them and I understand they do not understand.

It doesn’t make the reality of checking the credit card statement any less terrifying.

If I mention this in my mom groups, they insist on meal planning. For seriously months in advance. If you meal plan, KUDOS. Really. We wing like every dinner, unless I have miraculously remembered to take out something crockpot-able. Then I know I have to get my butt in gear. As long as everyone eats right?

Somedays, I am ok with not making my own money. Other days I cannot fathom trading that in for running around after a toddler yelling No like every 10 minutes.

My husband asked me if  I wanted to go back to work any time soon. My gut response is No. See, when I did make my own money, it was via retail.

RETAIL. If you have worked retail, you know what I am talking about. If I have a choice, no, I would not step back into the world of adults not reading signs, asking a million questions and giving attitude when they do not hear the answer they want, or having to explain return policy 100 times a day.

Toddlers are not supposed to listen, they are not supposed to understand yet, they are learning. Adults.. should have a better handle on things. Maybe they do outside of shopping, but guess what? Shopping, they do not have a handle on anything.

I have worked at a bakery, clothing store, office supply store and cd/dvd store (they are still around.)

Bakery was fine because everything was behind the counter so if I made a mess, I had to clean it up. Clothing store was where I started to see the appalling level of disregard people have. “Oh that shirt I was looking at just fell on the floor, too bad.”

CD/DVD store wasn’t so bad either except you had to hand hold every single customer that came in. Greet them, tell them about the sales, tell them about the sales again because they were not listening and they refuse to glance or read the giant sign hanging. Sure, push backs were boring but easy enough.

The office supply store was fun because I love the smell of paper. Its weird, lets move on. The devil of working there was back to school season. Bins are made, they look beautiful, they are stocked and marked and great. 30 seconds later, they are falling apart and oozing whatever product was in the them. Pens, scissors, post its, shit for lockers, shit for desktops and offices, at one point actual shit. Just kidding, that was in the fitting room of the clothing store.

Working in retail has made me a better customer and I will share my knowledge with my son and he too will be a good customer. If not, I am signing him up for summer shifts at office supply stores all over.

So that is why I would not prefer to go back to work. And this is what I think about when non SAHMs tell me “I could never stay home, I need to DO something.” Eye roll.

This happened one time in particular and then I found out she had never worked in retail, and I thought “well then you have no idea what hell is and how did you manage that?”

Give and take. Ebb and flow. Up and down. Cause and Effect. Do you! Unless “you” is making something else feel bad for them doing them or hurting people physically!

Have a great day!

 

Do Something for You First!

I am writing this as my son starts to wake up from a nap. I see him on the monitor rolling around either trying to get comfortable again or deciding he isn’t tired anymore.

My days revolve around that little guy. I have managed to get yoga in 2 days in a row and read some.

I just started the Fire Starter Sessions from Danielle Laporte. I read the Desire Map last summer and it made a lot of sense to me but I have not quite applied it to my life.

The Fire Starter Sessions is aimed for people who have a business. I technically started a business in January this year. It is called Mamabird Studio. So far it has been a way for me to photograph products and share them with the world. I have done some work for 2 friends of mine who have their own Etsy shops and that has been spiritually rewarding. They are happy! It makes me happy to see them light up at images of their items they have put so much into.

Even better, they have gotten more sales and more views! So that is awesome. And that is what I hope to do for many other people as well. I love product photography. I am completely inspired by people who think, design, create and make wonderful things AND have the courage to share them with the world.

I am excited to use the Fire Starter Sessions as a tool to hone in on how to brand, how to share, how to network. I look forward to a summer full of festivals and shows and hopefully connecting with people.

This business is close to my heart because I think that imagery is very important when selling stuff. I know what they are selling is close to their hearts as well. I genuinely want to give them the best images of their items. I love to photograph the stuff they have made with love.

Also, I have really enjoyed having something for me. When my son goes down for a nap, I have something to do that makes me feel good. Of course there is other stuff to do, dishes (like right now) laundry, dusting, sweeping, vacuuming (not that I can do that while he is sleeping, that would be rude).

Here’s the interesting thing, I feel better doing the stuff I need to do after I have done what I want to do. After what I want to do is done, the stuff I need to do is happily done! I am not rushing through it to get to my personal stuff.

That makes me happy, stuff gets done happily, I am happy, my husband is happy, my son is happy! Everything is connected!

I am about to say I was unhappy but when I say I was unhappy, I mean I was unhappy when my son wasn’t awake or my husband wasn’t here or he is here, but he was working in the shed. Please do not get me wrong, life is so good, I think I will wake up and it might all be a dream.

But, not having something that wasn’t connected to being a mom or being a wife left feeling aloof and frustrated. Sometimes, I would get angry and take it out on my husband. That is not fair. And my husband, Mr. Honesty, told me, “look I need to do something for me. I feel accomplished working in the shed. It isn’t my fault you do not have something.”

And he sure was right. I didn’t. I had books to read, sure. I had laundry to do, yeah, but nothing I really felt good about. So now here I am, doing something for me! It feels amazing.

Do what you want to do first. I am not saying ignore the stuff that has to get done, but once you do what makes you happy, the other stuff isn’t so doom and gloom!

Happy Wednesday!

SAHM vs Time

As a stay at home mom, I think about how my days are going to go by what meals we will have. If it is a crock pot dinner night, I know I need to get that started before noon. If it is not a crock pot dinner day,  then I know I need to start around 3. That is usually how my day gets planned. It works out pretty well except before I know it, I am laying in bed wondering what the hell I did all day.

Sometimes, when we get older, we say things like, I am no spring chicken, or I do not have the energy I once had as a teenager. And I get it! But what fundamentally changed over those years? We stopped going to school. Maybe after high school, maybe after college. But one way or another, we are out of school. School is on a… schedule! We fit so many classes and activities into one school day, why on earth am I only getting dinner cooked and hopefully the dishes are done too.

If I wanted to, I could say well my son needs me all day, he was up my butt, he was so snuggly, he needed me. While some days that is true, most days he wants to be Mr. Independent. So while he is being Mr. Independent, what am I doing?

Probably and terribly, I am on my phone. It’s awful and it’s true.

Let’s thing, ok what would a perfect day look like for me? What are some of the things I would like to do but do not get around to doing for whatever reason?

Here is a list:

Yoga
Exercise
Writing
Photographing an item
Reading
Chant
Go on a walk
Clean.. not that I want to, but its just gotta happen.

OK so those are somethings I don’t do that I would like to do more of. It is almost March. My son is almost 2. I had him almost 2 years ago. And I have done maybe 4 days worth of exercise. Not going to do me any good.

So today my husband took the car and left me the stroller. It is going to be a good weather day so I am getting my son and I outside and taking a walk! After breakfast.. which I need to start soon.

I am writing right now! Started right when I woke up, before my son woke up so I could get some me time.

Maybe the walk will be the catalyst to get my butt on the elliptical I begged my husband for months ago. Thank goodness it was used and not a brand new one, whew.

So if I had to make a schedule for myself, which sounds silly but I think I miss that part of being in school. Not waking up crazy early but my son decides that one. I can decide what happens to the rest of the day.

Wake up at 7
Chant
Write
Ben is up at 8 (mostly)
Chant with Ben
Breakfast
Clean up after breakfast (theres that cleaning I should do more of)
Go for a walk
If crock pot day, start dinner
Color/read/play time
Nap time (for Ben for Ben)
Yoga, right when Ben lays down or else I won’t do it.
Elliptical? We’ll see.
Ben is probably up, if not earlier.
Lunch
Find something we can clean “together”
Start dinner if it is not a crock pot day
Set Ben up with a movie/Sesame Street
Go into studio and photograph
Finish/eat dinner
Bath time for Ben
Bed time for Ben 7:30.

Notice there are not times on here because I have no idea how long these things will take, I may have to take something out if the first things run too long. Or add something if it turns out something did’t take as long! That would be great. But at its core, this is the perfect day!

New months resolutions if you will, to have more days like this. I think this is step one for sure. And now it is 8:09, Ben has been up for like 20 minutes so I am off to start breakfast!

Thanks for reading, have a good day!