This year for the week leading up to Mother’s Day, we wanted to pay tribute to the hard-working mums out there who also run a business. It’s the two hardest jobs on the planet, and many of you ladies do them both week in and week out. From all of us here at StompSoftware, we see you, we appreciate you, we celebrate you. You’re true heroes.
Katie Lamb – Katie Lamb Photography
“Being a work-from-home mama of little ones isn’t easy; however these are some ways I have found to allow me to be a full time, 100% present mama and also run a successful and sustainable business.”
I only book sessions Mondays, Wednesdays and (a few) Saturdays. Mon/Wed daytime is for office work. Tues/Thurs is for editing, and Fridays are my packaging and “catch up” days to finish anything I didn’t throughout the week. My pricing is specifically set in a way that allows me to profit what I need to contribute to my family and allow me to only shoot 2-3 days a week in order to leave enough time to ensure my clients are served well, deadlines are always met, and I can stop on top of the business end of things. Weekends I am off from any work (besides the occasional Saturday session).
My twins nap for 2 hours every day. This is my time to work as I always want to be 100% present with them when they are wake because they come first. I also work for a couple hours after they go to bed at 7pm. I try to do most of my house work early in the morning before they wake.
I have streamlined my editing and presets to allow me to edit sessions very quickly, and I have incorporated various programs into my business workflow (like BlogStomp and AlbumStomp!) to make things work more efficiently for me. I also love 17hats which is such a time saver! Everything about my business is handled here: accounting, bookkeeping, taxes, scheduling, emails, client records, invoicing, contracts, marketing plans, to-do lists, etc.
There are days that can throw my work schedule off: a baby is sick, teething, or just needs some extra mama-time for whatever reason. It’s then that I have to extend grace to myself and not be burdened with feeling like I have to do it ALL because babies don’t keep and work will still be there in the morning. <3
Chenin Boutwell – Chenin Boutwell Photography
I became a better photographer when I became a mom.
This little lady, Finley (left photo), gave me a run for my money at her session. Terrible twos, combined with a serious case of the “hangries,” made for a challenging shoot. Baby girl was tired, hungry and totally freaked out by the session. Finley was just NOT having it, but I knew it was important to her mom that I capture some portraits of her at this stage. As I started to lose light and panic set in, I remembered to think like a mom. This photo is my favorite from her session. What it doesn’t show is the bag of goldfish in one hand and her mama just outside the frame 😉
Heather J. Keys – Blossom and Bloom Photography
Single Parents …
No! You Can’t Do It All, Find Your Tribe!
I’m sure like most single parents, I often struggle wearing so many hats. I absolutely love being a mom who works and has her own business. I feel like my daughter has really turned out, thus far, to be a well rounded person with a firm grasp on what being successful looks like.
No lies here, I’ve learned the hard way that I can’t possibly be at every school event, bake sale, fundraiser, jog-o-thon, gymnastics practice, choir performance, and there’s often times I can’t be there when my daughter is battling another ear infection.
With that said, it’s so important to have a tribe! Lord knows, I couldn’t do this life without my tribe.
What’s A Tribe? A tribe is a group of people you can count on for just about anything and they can count on you too.
Most of the time my tribe helps me by giving me healthy sanity checks, as I’m often burning both ends of the stick at the same time. They help keep an eye on my kiddo when I get a call from my client that she’s in labor. They take me to doctors appointments when Ive gone 2 weeks with walking pneumonia and haven’t stopped to get better. They even help me crack open a bottle of wine and relax (this happens maybe once a month if I’m lucky).
You can do it. Don’t let being a single parent stop you from living your life and pursuing you goals. They don’t need to go on the back burner. Push them right out front, see them and achieve them. What you dream about, you can bring about. Don’t allow anyone to tell you otherwise, you’re one badass babe and I know you can do it.
Kate Duckworth – Duckworth Interiors
Sometimes I have to bring my kids along when I need to run by a job site. Recently, when visiting a multi-million dollar residence, my two year old stripped off her clothes, including her diaper and ran through the house naked as a jay bird!
It’s always a struggle to keep our house relatively clean. Recently my two year old was looking for a specific toy and I said, “Go look up stairs in the playroom.” She started climbing the stairs, turned to me and said, “Pray for me, mom.”
When it’s time to pick up the kids and I still have work to do for the day, I’ve stopped trying to get anything done while we’re home together in the afternoons. They go to bed early enough that I just pick it back up after bedtime. I want them to remember the fun we had together, not me being glued to the laptop. That’s worth the late nights for me.
Janica Boles – JBO Photo
My mom-heart is split tonight because I can’t be two places at once.
Thrilled to be here to watch Bailey’s choir sing, but there’s a part of me at Parker’s school watching his theater competition one-act play. (he is “just” an understudy and won’t actually be on stage…but I still hate missing a chance to see what he’s been putting so much time and effort into.)
I hope all of my kids’ directors, coaches, and teachers will consult me first before scheduling their future events, please and thank you.
Alexis Sassard – www.alexisreneesassard.com
Working from home seemed ideal. I loved the thought of flexibility and answering to myself. What I wasn’t prepared for were the ups and downs of productivity. One kid has a fever, and the other needs a snack right this second, and you forgot to wash your husband’s work clothes for the next morning and now it’s midnight.
Don’t get me wrong, I feel fortunate to be a stay-at-home mom because I get to witness every first milestone and I’m the one who gets to ask how their day was at school, and if we have a leaky faucet I’m always available for the 9-4 time slot the plumber gives me. But balancing it all can be tricky and flat out overwhelming. Not losing yourself, the woman you were before you became a wife and mother, in all of the responsibility that comes with not having a job outside of the home is hard. I’ve failed more times than I can count.
But with every breakdown there’s a breakthrough and somehow you learn the give and take of life until it becomes part of your daily dance. I chose to make me a priority also and do the things that fill my cup. I started my own small business and have managed to keep it afloat between breastfeeding and tantrums. There are many days when I feel defeated but those are quickly overshadowed by the ones when I get a lot accomplished. No two days are ever the same and I think once I learned to accept that, balancing motherhood, and housework, and business became a lot easier.