Happy Monday, Back’nGroovers! I know you are waiting for me to write about my past weekend in a cabin. It is the obvious….. Well, I am going to write about it a bit except in the unexpected way. We had a great time – our family for 2 days in a cabin at the overnight camp where my boys attend.
A few weeks ago I wrote about paying it forward, and I proposed that all of you should make your own pay it forward list. Well, my list keeps growing, and I keep challenging myself to think of something really creative to do with it (probably a vlog is best — which is why I more than likely keep putting it off). As the list keeps accumulating, it occurs to me that I really have not one but two pay it forward lists. A personal and professional one….yes, there is some overlap, but really there is room for two lists. While the professional pay it forward list continues to grow, today is a toast to the personal side.
In October, 2010, I basically woke up deciding to chase a dream, become a mompreneur, take a spark of an idea to market, and blog about the entire journey. This came as a BIG SHOCK to my family and friends. My family never saw me being an entrepreneur (I was a social worker turned stay-at-home-mom for 10 years) let alone many of them never heard of a blog! I am sure that my friends were equally surprised at my decision to follow an idea to market, or that I even had an idea that I wanted to bring to fruition. Needless to say, there is a group of peeps that jumped on board and amazingly supported me. That is how I came up with the idea for pay it forward part 1&1/2. This seemed logical to me since pay it forward part 2 is a list of those that have mentored and helped me, and in between the mentors and me is my first line of defense — friends and fam.
By now you probably know that I am a big fan of StartupNation. Why? I am not being compensated by them, endorsed by them, or really connected to them in any way. So, why do I continually promote them? Simply, because it works! When an entrepreneur – either new or seasoned – turns to StartupNation for tips, the advice is there! So much information is available and you do not feel like there is a “catch.” It is a great site to look for answers and hook up with other start-up business owners. This piece is especially invaluable for mompreneurs.
Often, if a mom has either been home for a few years or is moving from the traditional workplace to being a mompreneur….capital and advice could be limited. Hiring a professional coach or advisor at that point may not be a reality, and StartupNation can help her gain knowledge and connect with others. The website provides easy access for moms (and all start-up business owners) to move forward with their dreams.
just a few words on the 1st ever wordless wednesday here – picked up a grande skinny caramel macchiato on my way to visit my mom in the hospital – aaaah! now time to prioritize!
After a week that included one snow day, one 2 hour weather-related delay, my crazy attempt at a vlog, a mostly non productive Friday, and yes – no school this coming Monday…I felt the need to address the snow day discussion again. I will not spend a lot more time on it — just a few more thoughts. By the way, Backngroove Readers — did you ever notice that my background pic is the ocean? Guess what? I do not like snow! I know crazy…I should move, but my mom would miss me too much (and that is a blog for a whole different day). My groove was totally off track this week.
First of all, I am not the first to say this, but what is with the snow delay? We did not have snow delays growing up (I know – my grandmother used to walk miles to school), but honestly the delays are ridiculous. Not ridiculous because the school wants children to safely travel to and from school, BUT ridiculous because why is it not a priority for cities, townships, communities to make certain that roads are clear so buses and cars can take kids to school on time. As far as the cold weather goes — I cannot even go there because in reality how much does it warm up between 7 & 9 a.m.? Not much.
All over twitter and fb, there are wishes, hopes, dreams and expectations for 2011. Truthfully, I am just hoping to survive winter break…just kidding! I am hopeful that my “braduct” (thanks JB for coining that term) will evolve from an idea into a prototype, and then, of course, a useful braduct that all women NEED to buy. I have a rough outline of how I am going to get there, but I still have many unanswered questions.
The most difficult piece for me is that those questions will more than likely be left unanswered until 2011. I have spoken about it before, patience is something that I am learning. With that, I am also learning to prioritize differently and, occasionally, lower my expectations for myself.
This week has been lonely without “prototype guy”. “Prototype guy” is visiting family for the holidays, and I cannot begrudge him that. BUT, I miss him! We were on such a fabulous creative roll before he left. Who would have thought that we could have such a great time playing with bras in a purely platonic, utilitarian way? My 2011 expectation is that we can pick up where we left and continue on that roll.
Just a little tribute to being a mother of boys……
Tomorrow is a special day – I am going to the Steelers Game with my oldest son: it does not matter who they are playing (well maybe a little – it is the Jets & potentially the game of the year); it does not matter that it is going to be 20 degrees and starting to get dark at 4:15; it does not matter that I have a list a mile long for Monday Morning; all that matters, is that I am going to the Steelers Game with my oldest son. A few years ago, I started a tradition with my oldest son (whose religion is sports) of going once a year to the Steelers Game – just the two of us. It all happened by chance. We were given two tickets to a December game, and I decided to take JB as a special treat because his birthday is in December.
There was a certain magnitude to the event, and I am not speaking about the absolute magnitude of Heinz Field on Steelers Sunday. If you have ever been to Pittsburgh or Heinz Field on a Football Sunday, you know what I am talking about. If you have not witnessed this first hand, let me explain there are football fans and then there are Steelers Fans. As Pittsburghers, we are born with football in our blood – We are a part of Steelers Nation. The whole ground shakes around Heinz Field during a game because the crowd simply goes crazy! The city pulsates with anxiety and excitement during Steelers Games.
You know how you can tell someone is a true friend? They always tell you the truth, and they are not afraid to point out when you have made a mistake. Last week, in an attempt to adequately describe at home moms’ frustrations with returning to the workplace, I made a big mistake. I overlooked the feelings of fellow working moms. Thankfully, my good friend, AG, kindly pointed this out to me. AG spoke about looking forward to my success. While in the same breath, she pointed out that although at-home moms feel like they have to sacrifice themselves when they go back to work, career moms have made various sacrifices for years. Thank you AG! That is a good friend. (If you want to follow the conversation, check the comments for the blog post entitled “mompreneurs do not have to sacrifice”).
The ultimate goal of the post was to push for greater respect between at-home moms and career moms, but it seems as though I undermined myself in the process. Thankfully, life is a learning curve, and I was able to see the holes in my argument after some help from a good friend. SO, I am rephrasing my argument a bit.
I believe the ultimate goal is collaboration between at-home moms and working moms. I spoke about it in my first blogging attempt – a mentorship opportunity between career moms and at-home moms. Can that exist?
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to guest blog for a childhood friend and role model for all women – Hollee Temple on her website www.thenewperfect.com
Hollee is trying to help women of today accept “good enough” as being the new perfect – what a fabulous concept! I have posted my guest blog here in the previous post in case you missed it.
I had an unreal amount of responses to my blog – I was shocked! Working moms wrote that they admired me for being “at home” for a DECADE. “At home” moms wrote about having similar feelings as me – “Where is the on-ramp?”
That is what my adventure is about – Where is the entrance back into the career world? Do I have to get back on the same exit that I got off 10 years ago? Can I go a new direction? Make a u-turn? Possibly even create a whole new exit for myself?
Of course, I raise all these questions about where I will go in my quest with the caveat of still being there for my boys. I cannot abandon my first career – my family. Recently, someone called me persistent, pertinacious, & dogged. I am going to take this description in a positive way. I believe that these qualities mean that I can do it all! I can construct a new exit for myself while not losing site of who I have been over the last 10 years.
Back to the women that responded to the blog yesterday: Most were motivated by me, Many wanted to help me and other moms, One mom commented that she was working for free to gain experience, Others did not know where to start. Hopefully, my driving course will be able to help others.