Hiding Behind a Screen

Hiding…

Faking…

Pretending…

We all are guilty of doing this at some point or another. Especially as moms we have a tendency to showcase on Social Media how perfect our lives are. We showcase the random flowers our significant other picked up for us at the store, but yet that was the only time flowers were ever picked up. We post a photo on our Instagram and it shows us doing Pinterest crafts with our kids. It looks to others that we have it all together. Social Media is about as deceitful as the devil himself. That picture of a perfect family on their way to church? Nope, there were a lot of retakes of that photo. There was also possibly a lot of arguing or bickering prior to that.  We don’t know the true stories behind each picture that we scroll through on social media.

But…

To others looking on the outside in, it looks as if we are living the American Dream. We have a beautiful house, the minivan with the automatic doors, kids who are well-groomed and dressed, a mom who reminds you of June Cleaver, and the husband who goes to work everyday and comes home with a smile on his face wanting to play with the kids. It seems as if nothing in our lives is going wrong. We don’t want others to see the torment, pain, and heartbreak that is really going on behind closed doors.

What if….

What if we were real….

What if we were real and allowed others to see our vulnerabilities, our imperfections. Would our friends still be our friends? Would our family image be ruined? Why do we care so much about what people think anyways?

I think we are afraid that we will be lonely and that others may see us differently. They will see our struggles, pain, and our imperfections. They may judge us based on that and possibly not be friends anymore. But shouldn’t we all just be authentic with each other? I have told my struggles to some friends and they have told me their struggles. Sometimes our struggles can bring comfort to those who are suffering.

What if you reached out to your friend/sister/acquaintance and told them that no matter what they ever told you that you would still be there for them? That could (in some instances) be a life saving grace. I have read about domestic violence and experienced it. I can tell you that if one person was brave enough to say “I’ll be your friend regardless” that things may be different. It’s only after something drastic happens do we typically end up telling everything that has happened in our lives to a “safe” friend. But there are many women who aren’t as lucky. They are those who are battered and beaten. They are the ones who lie around in their own pool of blood. The dangers of putting on a perfect life on social media can be deadly to some. What if… What if those who are abused had a friend who they could trust? A friend who wouldn’t judge? A friend who was constantly there for them no matter what? Things could have a different outcome if they felt safe enough to text a friend.

Social Media has a lot of positives and is great when used in capacity. But showing off a fictitious life can be detrimental. Be authentic, show your bad days, good days, off days, crazy days, silly days, etc.

Remember it’s okay to show the real you and if you get unfriended because of it…then they weren’t a real friend to begin with.

 

 

Life Changes

This year has been probably one of the hardest I have had to endure. Going from married to single in a matter of months was no easy task. Add in the mix going from being a part-time working (stay at home) mom to having to juggle multiple jobs just to make ends meet (which sometimes isn’t even enough). Thankfully I have great and supportive parents but I see so many others who struggle and do not have a supportive family.

After staying at home (9 years) and doing real estate part time for 7 years it’s hard to be able to find a job that works for me, skill sets, and my schedule. So this shall be quite the journey that’s for sure. This year already has been interesting trying to find the right job. On top of that, I am still homeschooling and obviously I haven’t been keeping up with this blog since I haven’t posted in quite a while.

To keep myself distracted from all the negativity in my life I was focusing in on doing a fundraiser for Tim Tebow Foundation’s Night to Shine event. That has done a good job at distracting me and keeping my mind busy. But it’s also been a new experience and another thing on my plate. It’s exhausting trying to juggle work, life, school, and volunteering. I miss the luxury of having time to myself. Sure, I’ve gone out with friends here and there to my favorite local places. But alone time just isn’t on my timeline.

It’s easy to doubt myself and my abilities. Am I a good enough real estate agent? Am I a good enough mom? Could I do everything better? My self-doubt talk kicks in and negative feelings seem to arise. There are so many unanswered questions that cause confusion in my life. I don’t know which way to go. Should I continue with certain career paths? Should I switch my career? Go back and achieve my Masters degree? I am feeling left with wondering why or what I should be doing with my life. I am at a fork in the road career wise and not sure which way to go.

Life keeps on changing on me. I had to sell my first house that I bought and that was rough. I am so happy for the family that bought it, but at the same time I really loved my house. I just keep on praying and thinking that God has something better in store for me. It’s just hard to see what exactly he has planned at the moment. It feels like I’m walking in a fog but I know things will get better I just have to trust him.

Anxiety is aggravating and it’s hard to cope with sometimes. But I am a fighter and a warrior so I will survive. This storm may have seemed like a category 5 hurricane but the calm will be felt after it has passed. I feel that it is finally passing over now and that the calm will be here soon. Everyone goes through storms in their lives, relationships, and work. It’s just the way life is. But how you deal with the storm can make you or break you. The storm I went through  pretty much causes the majority of people (who have been in my shoes) a lot of stress and anxiety. I had to cope dealing with stressors and not let them bother me. It’s a process but once I get into the swing of things I’ll be okay. I’m almost to that point it just takes time.

Life changes and it’s how we cope with change that creates our character. How will we cope with the change….

Forget Everything and Run

or

Face Everything and Rise

Selling a house, moving, job, relationships, family, and all change is and will be scary. But how will you deal with the change? How will you fit what you know is comfortable into your life? Do you embrace the change? Or do you run from change? Life wasn’t meant to stay the same as we all have challenges. It’s about how we deal with the changes that makes us a better person.

Leave a comment below stating how you deal/cope with life changes!

Small Business Friday Highlight ~ Laney

My Happy Family!

Rewind the clock to 5 short months ago…I was a quiet stay at home mom who kept to myself and my small circle of friends.  I would never dream of putting myself out there for possible failure.  My confidence level was at an all time low.  I was used to having a full time job making very good money and feeling like I was contributing to our household.  Even though I knew I was just by taking care of our 22 month little boy it still didn’t seem the same.

In February I was approached about becoming an ItWorks distributor.  I listened, but didn’t really give it much thought.  A couple weeks later someone requested me as a friend on Instagram and I was looking through her pictures.  I noticed she was also a distributor.  I read through her posts and was intrigued.  I decided to reach out to her…just for the heck of it.  She told me how I could make anywhere from $200-$6000 plus a month.  Of course my mind went to “yeah right”.  But something told me to continue to follow her and just keep watching.  As I was seeing her posts I was seeing her success.  I thought to myself why couldn’t this be me???  But I also had every excuse in the book…I live in a small town, no one I know will buy anything, I’m too quiet to do this, I only have 101 followers on Instagram…and the list goes on.  So, I talked with my husband.  We discussed the $99 to join and was IT really going to WORK??  Or are we just throwing $99 down the drain that we could be using to buy diapers?!?  I then found out that with this new distributor kit I would get 4 of the skinny wraps that I was REALLY wanting to try.  So…it was decided!  I was going to do this!  I was going to be THAT girl!!  That so called #BOSSBABE or  #MOMBOSS!!  I was excited yet nervous about putting myself out there on social media.  The thought of failing made me want to throw up!  But the thought of being successful was way stronger!

And so the adventure began…I had no idea what I was doing.  But when I say the support is amazing, that doesn’t even begin to describe the support I had.  I started posting.  I started requesting more friends.  I started putting myself out there.  The first few weeks…NOTHING!!

I thought to myself “thats it, I’m failing”.  “I can’t do this”.  “I want to quit”.  

Just like everything else in my life!  If I don’t succeed right away…I’m done….I’m over it.  I talked to a couple girls on my team.  They told me to stay positive and keep trying and promised me if I do that “it will happen”.  I decided I would give it another month and see what happened.  I kept plugging away, posting daily, following up with people, doing everything I was supposed to be doing.  Then it happened.  I was nearing the end of my first 30 days and in 2 days I got 4 customers!  I was ecstatic!  It was just the lift I needed to put my mind into positivity mode!  Over the next month I continued to get more customers.  In May I got my first promotion to Executive leader and between May and June I had 12 distributors sign up under me.  This was when I knew I could do this.

I am continuing my success and it feels so good!  What I was hoping to be an extra $200 or $300 a month has turned into so much more!  It is helping my family.  It has given me my confidence back.  I have made so many friends in this business!  It has paid off debt and we now have financial freedom!  Most of all it lets me stay home with my son.  Every day I get to enjoy him, see him grow up and be there for him and for this I am so thankful.  This is why I love this company and all that it stands for!  And, if you are asking…YES IT REALLY DOES WORK!!!  The business aspect of being successful works and the products work!  I would not be successful nor would I be working for this company if I truly didn’t believe in these products and this opportunity!  I prayed and prayed for God to lead me in the right direction!  And here I am today 5 months later thanking God for guiding me to my decision to say YES!!

I would love to talk to anyone about this business opportunity and to work one on one with you to help you build your business and become successful!  I know I can help you and your family find financial freedom or I have a product to help you with your heath goals!  Contact me and lets chat!

Email   laneyann@hotmail.com

Text   724-651-2935

Follow me on Instagram @laneyann81

Visit my website  www.laneypickel.myitworks.com

My buddy and me!

SaveSave

Triple Time by C. Kevin Thompson Review

I was very blessed to receive a copy of C. Kevin Thompson’s new book Triple Time to review on my blog. I want to give a huge shoutout and a huge thank you to him. Triple Time is book 2 in a series called the Blake Meyer series. I have read series books before and I love them! So I’m excited to be able to write this review today on his book.

Prior to reading “Triple Time” I had read a huge book series by Ridley Pearson, I will not lie that it was Kingdom Keepers. So thankfully prior to reading the Blake Meyer series I knew what to expect in books that went along in a series. The first book in the series is 30 Days Hath Revenge and it’s a pretty intense book (I thought, at least compared to the Juvenile series of Kingdom Keepers).

“Triple Time” is a book that is full of intrigue, mystery, and once you think you figured out the mystery something is thrown in the mix! The chapters are perfectly laid out and I love the way C. Kevin Thompson wrote it. I love at the beginning of the chapter you know where you are in the book, no guessing in the middle of the chapter or rereading to figure out where your character is. I can’t stand when authors just leave you hanging trying to figure out where the characters are. If they are in Jacksonville, I want to know that prior.

The only downfall to this book is that it is so intriguing that you can’t put it down. I feel like I get to live my dream of being Belle from Beauty and the Beast who “couldn’t put the book down” while reading this book. Reading before bed was probably not the greatest idea but I have no other time to read during the day. I didn’t sleep much since I kept wanting to read more and more. I finally told myself, just to compromise and read 10 chapters. That went okay the first night, the second night I had limited time to read and so I only read about 7 but my goal was to put it down after 3-4, and the third night back to 10 chapters but ended up reading 15 chapters. This pattern continued but the book is so good you will not want to put it down.

The characters in the story are (most notably) Blake Meyer and his family. I don’t want to give too much away but when I was reading this story for some reason I was taken back to a friend’s daughter’s birthday party. Having close friends/family at the birthday party, luckily the unthinkable didn’t happen at the real party like it did in the book. (No spoilers here you are going to have to read it!) There are other characters in the book but I don’t want to give too much away in this thriller novel.

The book flows flawlessly from the beginning to end. After reading the book in it’s entirety I would still have the same conclusion. This book reminds me of the thriller books by Ridley Pearson (I’m a huge fan of his Kingdom Keeper books). So, the ending of this book leaves a cliff hanger and ready for the next book in the story.

If you are looking for a good book to read, I highly suggest this book! It’s a great thriller book that will keep you on the edge of your seat wanting to read it constantly. It isn’t boring and the storyline moves along and makes you want to read more of the story.

I do know how sensitive some subjects are to certain people. Not all people can handle books with sensitive subjects in them (i.e. rape, human trafficking, domestic violence, etc.) so I just wanted to put a trigger warning below. I enjoyed reading the book and there were some intensive moments. So to be polite to others who may potentially read the book, I wanted to just put out a trigger warning. The trigger warning is listed below.

*Trigger Warning*

I would like to disclaim that there is talk of human trafficking in the book, this is a real problem in our world today, so if this subject is sensitive to you I would read with caution. You could possibly skip over those parts and still understand the book, but just note that it is important to the plot. I had some issues reading about the human trafficking but I was able to not become emotionally involved, except for a few parts and I wanted to yell at the characters in the book.

 

Thank you for reading my review this book! Leave a comment below stating who your favorite character is from the book!

 

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received a copy of this book for free in the hope that I would write a review on my blog. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255. “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

SaveSave

Small Business Spotlight ~ Real Moms Blog

Hi there! My name is Lynsey, I am the founder of Real Mom Blogs. I am a wife, a mother, medical records director, and blogger! I wear so many hats, including the aunt of 7, sister to 6, daughter to 3, and best friend to the many few. You know who you are! As you can see, my life IS CRAZY. 

My family and friends are everything to me! So, I go out of my way to make sure the important people in my life are well taken care of. Sometimes that means just being there, being supportive, and listening. Other times, that means I need to provide financially for my husband and child. To keep a roof over our head and food in our bellies. We also like to have fun! I take my son everywhere with me. Every Saturday we go to my little brother’s baseball games. When we can, we go to my sister’s dance or singing competitions. At least once a month, we try to get all of my mom’s kids together for a big family dinner. I also have my husband’s family that we have family dinners with. Then there is also my dad who lives an hour away. We like to see each other as often as possible. Having most of my family living in Utah makes things very nice. Utah is easy to travel, even when we are all spread out! 
I only have boys. A furry, 7-year-old, mini schnauzer. An adorably frustrating almost 4-year-old, and my overly handsome husband (who sometimes is like another child). I would like to eventually expand our family, but for now, it’s just the 4 of us! We are your average family. Nothing special here. 
I started Real Mom Blogs because I was tired of reading mommy blogs about “perfect” moms and their “perfect” families. There was SO much to say and nowhere to get it all out. I wanted to start a blog written by a real mom. So I did! I started Real Mom Blogs in November of 2016. It was slow at first, but I feel it picking up. It demands more and more of my time every week!
So I have a full-time job, full-time blog, and more than full-time family! How the heck do I manage? Well, I enjoy every minute of it. I have chosen to do things with my life that are things I love! Sometimes there are scheduling conflicts, and those suck. I have learned that it is okay to say no sometimes and I don’t have to make EVERYONE happy at the same time. Most of the time it all works out, and others I end up running around with my hair on fire!
My best tip on surviving life is to take time for yourself. Even if it is just 20 min a day. You have to take care of yourself too!
You can visit Lynsey’s Facebook page Here
Then visit her at her website at Real Moms Blog

Night to Shine 5k

A Night to Shine, Tim Tebow, Tim Tebow Foundation

A Night to Shine

I am really excited about my fundraiser for Night to Shine (Tim Tebow Foundation)! It is really exciting to be part of a wonderful organization who gives back to their community. Not only that, but it is such an honor to be able to help with this 5k. I have learned a lot about “life” through doing this 5k. I have learned that even after people may decline or reject your sponsorship offers that it’s okay. Just pick yourself back up and keep on going. Keep moving forward and pressing on as it’s okay if you don’t succeed the first time, you just try again.

Also, what has been a learning curve is that a 5k doesn’t just consist of finding a race timing company and finding a place to run. It’s a lot more than that! Luckily, an organization (non-profit) I was working with last year we had contemplated doing a 5k. So, I started to research information about coordinating a 5k. I think that research really helped boost me so that I wasn’t going into this blindsided. Although, after working it so far I didn’t realize how much my lack of knowledge was.

I run 5k’s I don’t run (coordinate) 5k’s prior to this. But I have really enjoyed coordinating!

This is just a small 5k compared to larger 5k’s like IOA’s 5k or the runDisney races. I can’t even imagine how much work goes into the runDisney races! That is overwhelming to even think about! I know how much work it is just for this Night to Shine 5k, with obtaining sponsors, advertising for runners, etc. It’s a lot of work to put together a race, but it’s been educating and exciting.

The best part about coordinating is that it has really given me new skills. I feel that the theme of this year has been learning new skill sets. I have gone out completely on faith with new opportunities and having no idea what I am getting myself into. But so far, it has been excellent! I am excited that all of the new skills I have learned thus far, have really come together and made me a better person. I have had to get over things that I was once anxious about.

The biggest thing I have learned is to rely solely on the faith of God to bring it all together. I was a lost sheep at the beginning of this back in March/April. As in, a loner lost sheep, who was so far from home she didn’t know where she was going or how to get on the right path. But I prayed (and I still do pray) each and every day for this to come together. I know what God has called me to, he will see me through it. Therefore, even on days when I may call my friend in tears after having a rough day with work or feeling down that things aren’t coming together for the 5k the way I would like it to. She reminds me that it will come together. I am reminded by God’s word and through prayer along with through my friend that it will come together. I know that when the day of this 5k comes, I will be shouting glory to God on most high. He is the one who put this 5k together, ultimately.

We do ask that you continue to be in prayer for us for the 5k over the coming months. Pray that we are able to obtain our sponsorships, runners, and that everything will come through. I know that everything came perfectly together at Night to Shine this past year at our church, and it was a huge success. How was it a success? Because people worked hard, prayed, and had faith God would see it through.

We do hope to see you sign up for the Night to Shine 5k as we also have a virtual option for those who don’t live in the area! If you want to sign up go to www.nighttoshine5k.com for more information. Or if you want to register now, click here

Healthy-blended-families

Supporting-Empowering-Loving

Healthy-blended-families

I have known my friend Jillian DeWald for a long time now. You may remember her from an earlier post this year, for my “Small Business Spotlight” that I love to do on Fridays. She is a very encouraging woman and so she told me about her 7 day bootcamp for blended families. Today, she posted a video about how to keep her spiritual life in check. These days there are quite a few blended families, so it’s important to be a Godly example and showcase Christ’s love for others. So I am really excited to share this information with you. Here are the topics she is going to be showcasing in her group:

Day #1: Struggles that we face with insecurities

Day #2: Making time for Jesus

Day #3: Resentment, and how it affects your marriage

Day #4: How to learn about the “Best Yes!” (lessons in over-committing)

Day #5: Surrounding yourself with like-minded individuals

Day #6: Healthy Recipes

Day #7: Mental, Emotional, and Physical Transformation. Take time for YOU!

I am not in a blended family, nor am I a step mom but I do love the encouragement that Jillian gives in each of her videos. I am so thankful that for step-moms out there that there is a place for them to love on each other, encourage each other, and be there for each other. I’m sure it isn’t easy to be a step-mom. If you are a step-mom or possibly a soon-to-be step mom I highly encourage you to be part of this community. It’s a great way to be encouraged, loved, and supported by other moms who are in the same situation as you. I hope that you will be encouraged and walk away feeling refreshed.

So many times in our lives, we feel like we are the ONLY people in our specific situation. We are the ONLY people who deal with these struggles. But guess what, that is so far from the truth. There are others who go through the same struggles as you, there are others who know what you are going through, and it’s so encouraging to be able to speak about our struggles out loud with like-minded individuals.

If you are wanting to join this Facebook Group it is called Healthy Blended Families

Thank you all for being such amazing readers and I hope that this group touches your life! <3

Small Business Friday~Totally Mommin’ It

Super Mommin’ It Ain’t Easy but It Doesn’t Have to be Hard!

Mommin’ ain’t easy and whoever said it is…well…I’d love to know their techniques…

I’m a mom of four kids that range from ages 2-10 and every day is both exciting and exhausting. My husband and I own a small construction business and I’ve been on my own personal journey to become a better mom while spreading the word about how awesome all moms are in the face of some pretty deep situations. I’m doing that thru my writing and by creating online spaces for moms of all kinds to come together and be encouraged, encourage others, and laugh at the comical scenes that appear in this thing called motherhood.

It seems I have a lot to juggle and people often make comments about how I must be a super mom and many wonder how in the heck am I pulling this all off?

Welll…like I said, mommin’ ain’t easy and I’m not the first or last mom to pull off so many adventures at once but I’m always eager to give a few tips as to what keeps me sane in the brain every day!

I know there are so many other moms out there Totally Momming It every day and I’d love if you’d drop your tried and true techniques in the comments!

I loved Richard Carlson’s book, “Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff…and it’s all small stuff.”

I bought the book in the Houston, Texas airport in 2015 while returning from Tony Robbins ‘Unleash the Power Within’ conference. It’s now rabbit eared and the spine is falling apart! That’s just how often I go back to read how to keep the little things from taking over my life.

One of my favorite tidbits from Carlson is his suggestion to ask ourselves…

“Will this matter a year from now?”

While I can influence my children’s behavior and teach them right from wrong-they’re just kids. As I’m not perfect, neither are they.

Inevitably, they will drive me up the wall. Sometimes by punching each other to see who can hit hardest and sometimes by deciding to stack all the DVDs and Xbox games in the shape of a house, over and over again, each time causing a loud crashing noise. Guess which one I choose to worry about. You guessed it – the punching. I don’t want them to get hurt and that could def. cause problems a year from now. The noise…. I can deal with and I’m secretly happy that they’re not pulling my sleeve for something. I could fuss at them about both, but I choose not to. I apply this lesson beyond my mothering, though and that’s why I love that quote all the time.

My hubs and I don’t argue too much really…maybe over silly stuff now and again but not really. It’s because a lot of things we COULD argue about, get thrown out the window because it really will not matter a year from now.

So why even waste the energy and invite the negativity.

Ask yourself that question the next time you’re deciding to fuss with your kids or fuss with anyone for that matter!

One more gem from Carlson…Make peace with imperfection.

I’m a self-proclaimed perfectionist. I like things done in very specific ways and I like others to do things exactly as I do them. Bad recipe for a houseful of kids and a hubby who likes things his way, too! Ideally, I have a perfectly clean living room with the little vacuum lines in the carpet. Everything is in its place and each place has a purpose. Apparently, that’s not my reality. Vacuum lines in the carpet are nonexistent in my home. I parent better by making peace with not just my own imperfections but the imperfections that surround me. Yes, I could pout about the Cheerios on the floor and the pile of clothes on the couch. But why??? It’s such an energy zap and it takes me away from my goal of being a happier and saner mom.

In Carlson’s words…

“Gently remind yourself that life is okay the way it is, right now. As you begin to eliminate your need for perfection in all areas of your life, you’ll begin to discover the perfection in life itself.”

Be present. Be in the moment.

This is easier said than done but it’s so worth it to remind yourself this. In fact, this is one of my mantras in my head when I get that overwhelming feeling that I’ve got a billion things to do while my daughter is telling me about how she needs to get ready for crazy hair day at school. Since I’m thinking about those other billion things, I can’t possibly be really listening to her.

When I get that feeling…when that anxiety creeps up-I just stop doing everything else I’m doing and just be absolutely present. I look at her, in her eyes and follow the conversation. Instantly, my anxiety from the other stuff, tamps down and I can appreciate her and her story. I can appreciate the overall moment. Before I know it, she won’t be talking about crazy hair day. ☹ She’ll be talking about how to wear her hair to prom…Appreciate the moments when you have them!

Breathe and breathe deep.

Do you know how often we unconsciously hold our breaths during the day? Neither do I but it’s definitely more often than we think. When I’m faced with something that is frustrating me, whether it’s flubbed up excel formulas while processing payroll or helping with homework for what feels like wayyyy to long…I take a deep breath.

Did you know this free stress buster can help you instantly reduce tension, find your inner calm, and relax? Breathing and doing so deeply, helps me power thru and find my patience when it feels like it’s getting away from me.

I’ve got a few other tips to bringing zen to your den, if you want to check it out!

While all the above helps me thru my day, there’s one that I put the most effort into because it is the most important to me and the most important lesson I hope to instill in my children and spread to others.

Be Grateful.

I look around me and I see not just where I am but where I’ve been sometimes. When being present in the moment fails me, being grateful in it instead works wonders. Being grateful in times of stress is absolutely possible and beneficial.

I started having children at a young age. We struggled to support them and we were so determined to make life better. We lived with our parents on and off. We had to borrow money to make ends meet. Some would say we had to ‘rob Peter to pay Paul.’ My husband and I had to put up with unhealthy work environments and often felt defeated and as though we were standing in one place while everything passed us by.Our greatest fear was failing the little lives we’d brought into this world. Back then, I’d try to be thankful and grateful for what we did have.

We had jobs, no matter how poor the income. We had a loving family that stepped in to support us in our times of need. WE ALWAYS HAD. Now, as entrepreneurs, I’m not saying we have it all, but we have so much more than we’d thought we’d ever have or be able to give our children.

I’m so grateful for the experiences that led us up to these moment.

I’m so grateful for the opportunity for our children to witness the journey.

I’m just so grateful.

And when no method in my formula to super mommin’ it isn’t working being grateful and reflecting puts me back on track every single time. And that my friend’s is how I’m totally mommin it day in and day out. Sprinkle in a knack for speed cleaning and some good meal planning and you’ve got the perfect mix ❤

Like I said before, Mommin’ ain’t easy but we don’t have to make it any harder than what it needs to be. Be kind to yourself, be present in the moment, always be grateful and all will be well.

Small Business Friday~Mamma in Pearls

Hello Running Mom Diaries readers! This is my first guest blog post so I hope you’ll bear with me as I have no idea what I’m doing!
Introductions first, I’m Alexis, a daughter, wife to a wonderful man, and mamma to a sweet
little 6 month old girl. I’m currently a stay at home mom and my path to my business was a bit surprising (to me anyways). I had always planned to go back to work after we started having
children. I saw so many women I worked with doing that and thought there was no way I
would be happy staying home. I loved problem solving and feeling like I was making a difference too much. Fast forward to being pregnant and it all started to change.
I struggled with morning sickness through my whole pregnancy, was put on bed rest at 34
weeks, and had a C-section at 36 ½ weeks. During my pregnancy the more my husband and I
discussed daycare, looked at some facilities, and thought about our little baby, the more we felt
like we just weren’t comfortable with putting our baby in daycare at such a young age. After looking at my company’s policies and talking to my manager, we decided that I would take a 1
year leave of absence from work.
After our daughter was born and my husband went back to work,
I felt a bit adrift. I didn’t know what to do with myself during the day while our newborn slept. I was still recovering from my C-section so I was mostly a fixture on the couch. I missed problem solving, I missed feeling productive, and I missed the mental stimulation of work
ing. So, I decided I needed to find something to do with myself.
After researching multiple options (MLM, blogging, selling on Amazon) I finally hit on something
that seemed like a perfect fit for me: starting an online business directory! I love helping
people and I had realized with my newborn that going shopping just wasn’t much of an option and who had time to sift through tons of reviews or search for those small, handmade,
businesses online? So my site, Mamma in Pearls, was born!
Mamma in Pearls is a curated business directory aimed at moms so that they can create the life
they want more easily. In addition, many of the businesses listed on the site are mom owned
and so we are starting to build a great community of moms helping moms. This has been such
a great project for me and I’m loving the way that it’s growing into a wonderful resource for
small, mom-owned, businesses. They all have such wonderful and well made products but don’t often get the exposure to the market because people don’t have the time to search them out.
I love helping to connect the moms who want and need these products to these amazing small
businesses and creating such a great win-win situation for both sides!
Right now we’re doing a series on our blog–Meet the Boutiques- where I have interviewed the
different boutiques listed on Mamma in Pearls and there are often promo codes for discounts,
free shipping, etc. You can read our current post here:
If you’re a mom who would like to join our community, you can find Mamma in Pearls at:
If you have a business that you would like to list to start connecting your products with our
moms, you can list your business at:

Small Business Friday Spotlight~Jodi

My wonderful family! <3

My name is Jodi Naugler, and I’m a wife to Ryan and mom to our little boy Avery, who just about to turn one. I was so excited to connect with Amy, and I’m glad I get to share with you! My career for the last 8 years has been in education, where I develop e-learning and training as an instructional designer.

I was introduced to Arbonne in 2012 when a friend I used to work with, invited me to try the products and to take a look at the business. What I learned was that I had been using toxic personal care products for the majority of my life. I never really cared about the products I was using, and I wasn’t loyal to any one brand. Once I became educated on Arbonne’s philosophy of pure, safe and beneficial wellness from the inside out, I made the switch for myself and my husband. I knew at some point we would have little ones running around our house, and I wanted to make sure I was putting something safe on their skin.

It also made sense to me to look at this business opportunity, because it was something I could work alongside my career. My hard-earned money was leaving the house every single month on our products, such as skincare, cosmetics and nutrition. I realized that whether you’re a household of one, or a household of five, you have to wash your face and hair, and brush your teeth!

So in the 4 1/2 years that I’ve been using these products, I’ve noticed a difference in my skin and health, and it has given me choices for our family. The best part is that now I have the freedom to return to work on a part-time basis, while my family remains my priority.

I love to share Arbonne products with everyone, and I believe that our business has the potential to empower anyone who is ready to work harder for themselves than for someone else. Please feel free to reach out to me on Facebook and check out my page, Jodi Naugler, Arbonne Independent Consultant.