{On mixing mamahood + handmade life.}

One of my very wise and dear friends, Liv Lane, is guest blogging today on a topic that I know many of us hold very close to our hearts: how to mix mamahood + handmade life. Now that our little one is here I am working on juggling my new role as a mama :) I can’t wait for you to read the advice Liv is sharing with us today. “See” you in the comments! PS. You must must must read this particular post… xoxo

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How do you find time during the day to focus on your business? Do you have a nanny? Use daycare? Are the kids in school? Do you carve out certain times of day that are for work, whether your kids are with you or not? How do you explain to them that you need to work on a task and need them to leave you alone? How do you keep them busy?

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This much I know: running a home-based business with little ones underfoot is not for the faint of heart. It’s a constant balancing act. Just when I think I’ve got it down, something changes — my schedule, the kids’ needs, the childcare situation. At first, that unhinged me. After leaving my corporate career in 2007 to start my own biz and be more present for my family, I learned the hard way that I couldn’t do it all. I needed to keep bringing in an income, but I struggled to be focused and productive in my work – and that,
in turn, made me a cranky mommy. Everything suffered.

Today, things are so much better. It helps immensely that my boys are now in school; my fourth grader is gone from 8:30 – 3:30 and my four year old attends preschool four afternoons a week. When our little guy was just a couple of months old, we hired our first part-time nanny; the freedom that gave me to focus on my work was amazing. Now, we have a flex nanny — someone who cares for several families and can frequently juggle her schedule to fit our needs. She is usually here three to four mornings a week until our 
four year old goes to preschool. It’s the perfect schedule for us right now; unless I’m traveling, I’m able to get the kids ready for the day and be there when they get home from school.

It also is important for me to have my own creative workspace. We turned our dining room, which was wasted space most of the time, into my studio (we call it the dudio… dining room turned studio!). It’s unconventional and we certainly can’t host Thanksgiving dinner, but I love having sacred space for my work while knowing the kids are nearby, often playing in adjoining rooms. Most days, I still have work to do even after they get home from school — so I’ll take time to play, chat, make snacks, and help with homework — and then set them up with toys, video games or a movie to keep them busy while I sit back down at the computer for a bit. The key for me is doing whatever is best for our family and not trying to live up to anyone else’s standards. I love our set-up right now — and feel blessed to be able to make it work for all of us.

SHARE WITH US BELOW: What scares you about mixing mamahood with handmade life? What tips have you adapted personally that made the transition easier? Or, what have you since learned that’s made juggling both of these roles a bit easier? Let’s educate + encourage each other in the comments below…

liv-lane-gussy-sewsLiv Lane calls herself a Human Sparkler, using her gifts to illuminate and celebrate yours. She leverages her background as a journalist, publicist and creative entrepreneur to helps artists, authors and advisors embrace their brilliance and master the art of feel-good self-promotion. Her coaching, ecourses and uplifting art can be found at LivLane.com.

 

 

Comments

  1. 1

    says

    I LOVE hearing about how other Mommas do it! I have a 3 yo, a 1 yo, and a baby due in September (EEK! We’re CRAZY) so sometimes the workload takes over and I feel like there aren’t enough hours in the day.

    I finally learned – there aren’t.

    I just got a new Whitney English planner and it has revolutionized my shop life and mindset. I learned to set THREE goals for the day – work related or otherwise – and if I’ve done those three things, it’s been a good day. It has changed my “schedule” from working 3 hours every night after my boys finally go to sleep (then crawling, exhausted, into my bed) to working for an hour 4-5 times a week. I’ve found that scheduling and getting focused has helped me to juggle things a little better. Now if I could only shake a fairy out of this planner to mop my floor for me ….

  2. 2

    says

    Oh I LOVE this post!!!
    I am so with you on a variety of levels. My three kiddos are in school now, but there were days when they were all home and I juggled. I enjoyed hearing how life changes and you need to change your business schedule too.
    I also have a studio close to the hub of my home so I can keep tabs on everyone and their friends.
    Yes, there are times when I tell them I need to get work done, especially in the summer.
    It is all a work in progress and I would not trade it for an out of the home job every, well, sometimes….but not for long!!

    Thanks so much!

  3. 3

    says

    Really loved this post! I am in my 25th week of pregnancy with our first little one. I own a jewelry business, write a blog as well as work as a part time worship leader for my church, so all of my work is done from home. I have been so concerned about how to juggle everything once baby girl gets here. This post had some wonderful advice that I’ll definitely remember. Thanks!

  4. 4

    April Foss I Sew Lucky says

    Our newest child (6 kids) is now almost 3 months old! Before I had her I was all about the biz and making sure I was making money. After she was born, I can’t believe how much the importance of making that sale has changed for me. My shop is still open and have a huge order I should be working on, but all I want to do is hold Charlotte:) Right now, I am soooo ok with that because I know that soon she will be in school. So, I guess, I am not doing so great at “juggling it all”. I have a studio of my own and find that I have a very hard time finding time or wanting to be in there. During the day during one of her naps I will get in there and work for about an hour. NOT alot of time at all when trying to run a biz. Like I said, I am really ok with that right now. Just soaking up this time. My kids are ages 15, 13, 10, 8, 5 and 3 months. 4 of them have birthdays in the next couple of months so they will all be a little older and they are great helps and holding the baby when I need to get things done:)))

  5. 5

    Crystal says

    Great post! I have a 1yo and 5 yo. How do you keep a clean house, get your work tasks done and have the kids at home. A lot of time I feels like something suffers to get something else done. I’ve thought about hiring a mature teen to help a few hours a day when school is out, just to play with the kids, take them outside and give me time to get invoicing and business tasks done. But where do I start?!

  6. 6

    says

    Ladies, I’m so thankful for this post! This is a subject that has been puzzling my mind! I’m really starting to focus on my business full-time and I’m trying to learn to balance family life (w/ a 4 year old – preschool part-time and 18 month preemie graduate who still has some medical needs). As you all already know….it is a lot of work, but God is giving me strength daily and ladies like you that keep me encouraged!

    I have incorporated my own studio space which is my best decision so far. Now, I’m on to learning to balance my time and set realistic goals. (I’m guilty of trying to complete a billion things in one day…and feel bad if I don’t…) Looking forward to receiving my advice and thanks in advance for the wonderful feedback!

  7. 7

    says

    Yes!! I found myself nodding my head and thinking, YES YES to all of the things you wrote. I am a single mom with a full time job and boy is it a balancing act. Somehow it mostly works but not without stress and a lot of juggling!!

    I’m a new follower of your blog! Found you through Casey Wiegand’s blog!

    I’d like to invite you and your followers to come link up with the Aloha Friday Blog Hop if you want!! We have a new April team and we’d love to have ya’!

    Have a wonderful and lovely weekend!

    Aloha,

    Jean {What Jean Likes}

  8. 8

    says

    I have a 4 year old and now he is older i have more time to juggle everything, i also work full time. Just having one is a bit easier. But I still have to make sure that i am giving him plenty of attention and that he is occupied whilst i am working, that he is well fed and looked after and that his school work is done. I agree that when you have kids things can change as they get older so you are constantly adjusting to changes and have to adapt your work and childcare around the changes. It is always great to hear how other mums manage, great post.

  9. 9

    says

    Love this post. Love you! You have an adorable little man! Also, super random, at work last week I met someone who says she is related to you!! Best of luck, loving these posts about motherhood.

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