It’s a Tastic Christmas

Part One: Bag-Tastic

So, I don’t usually endorse products on my blog, besides my beloved Pooper Scooper, but this year I found some really awesome bags and purses that were so awesome they well…made me want to write about them!

Back in the day, before we had kids (goooosh it seems like I am writing that a lot lately), I used to be really into purses.  Now, don’t get me wrong.  I was and never will be a purse snob, only sporting Gucci, Coach or whatever else brand is really cool now (and since I can’t even think of a third brand name, how cool does that make me?).

I live in rural Michigan.  Coach is not required.

But, when I used to work in an office and get up early to take an entire hour to get myself ready for work, I always had a coordinating purse.  Now I grab the one nearest the door with the most diapers and snacks left inside…and that includes snacks for me.

When I put on my Cyber Monday Queen hat and Christmas shopped for all the lovelies on my list, I added myself as a lovely.  It’s been a while since I have bought myself anything and well, the temptation was just too great for me.  I bought myself this super cute, functional and fun mommy tote.  It is seriously the most-clever-idea-for-a-mom-with-a-toddler-and-a-babe. Ever.  Like ever-ever.

The Mother Child Tote in blue

The little babe is most-always attached to my hip.  So, I hold this bag on the other shoulder and our toddler holds onto the handle.  HOW.CUTE.IS.THAT?  And, our toddler loves it!  It’s also ginormous, which is great because I look like a total fool carrying small bags.  I am vertically blessed…remember?

The most awesome part about this was that it was only $20.  What a deal!

This bag must have been really popular because they don’t even have it listed at my second favorite online shopping site where I bought it just a few weeks ago, uncommongoods.com.  But, luckily…if you’re interested in it, they have it at my first favorite online shopping site, amazon.com.

The other Bag-Tastic find is from a great nonprofit group at plywoodpeople.com.  I went to college with one of the founders.  They do this amazing project to help legal refugees who were forced to flee their countries because of conflict.  The material used for their ‘billboard bags’ is upcycled from billboards on the streets.   Proceeds from the bags (or wallets, laptop cases, etc.) provide English classes every Friday and restores dignity for the workers.

The bags are not only unique, but carry your stuff…and a story (hey, I should take up marketing).

Back of my billboard bags.

Front of my billboard bags.

Message tag on the billboard bags.

I ordered two billboard satchels, not knowing who I would give them to, and now I am trying to decide if I should give them away or keep them.  You can designate any specific colors you want, but I didn’t and thought I would just see what I got.  I happen to get leopard and grey.  Grey?  That is SO my second favorite color (first being black).  They will both match everything I own.

Tough decisions here.  Tough decisions.

Stay tuned for a Tastic Christmas Part Two: Craft-Tastic!

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Mommy First. Professionally Unprofessional.

I work from home. That can sound a little sketchy, like when I see the ‘Make $1,000 a week working from home!’ ads. But, it’s legit. In fact, I know quite a few people who work from home in my field. Marketers, graphic designers, etc. can make quite a good living doing what I do and companies can save a lot of money by hiring people like me without having all the overhead, retirement, health insurance and other costs associated with having employees.

Now that I’ve plugged my business…

They call me a ‘working mom.’

I consider myself a ‘mom working.’

I am fortunate enough to not only work from home, but keep a more part-time schedule and flex my hours a lot, doing work at night if needed, or early in the morning before the kids get up. (Yeah, like that ever happens.) Our oldest daughter just turned three in October so I’ve had just over three years to look like a fool in various venues, meaning I look like a mommy first and professional second. I’m OK with that.

I have…

  • Spilled diapers out of my purse as I put it down while meeting with a prospective client for lunch. 
  • Lied to clients (yes, I’ve lied) when they ask what that noise is in the background… ‘nope, not my daughter in the monitor…just the radio in the background.’ 
  • Told many, many poop stories to clients and realized the topic after it was too late to return. I had to finish the stories hoping they’d laugh at the end. Most of the times, they did. 
  • Spoken to clients on the phone while nursing…gotta love the multi-tasking options with the telecommute, minus a web cam, of course. 
  • Along the same lines, but one thousand times more embarrassing was when I quickly dropped something off to a client shortly after our oldest was born. I had leaked and didn’t realize it until I got home. I felt full of awesomeness after that one. And I was obviously full of something else too.
  • Let’s just get all the nursing stories out in the open here…had to pump while working at a marketing agency I do work for.  It was just me and one other employee (male, of course), in their fairly small office.  I had to come out and tell him what I needed to do.  He could only get himself to say, ‘do your thing.’ He was actually great about it!  And now that he has a prescious little girl he can totally relate.

But over the past few years I have become more open and honest about how I run my business. Not that I tried to hide anything before, but I try and be blatantly upfront about the fact that I don’t work full time and I’m not available 24/7 to anyone else but my family. But when I work, I work. And my kids are well taken care of so I can concentrate on something I love to do.

So, the next time you’re in a meeting and you see a mom with drool on her right shoulder and diapers peeking out of her purse, show her a little love. And bring her a latte for crying out loud. She deserves it!