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Owning a business…

Owning a business can be rough.

I have owned a business(or co-owned, whatever Mom says) since I was 26 years old.  On a whim mom and I decided to start a women’s boutique without knowing much except we wanted to be a boutique for every woman as well as affordable.   Mom did have a background in owning a business, thanks to my grandma and their antique business for the past 30 years, so we had some clue on how to get started.

We got started and it was rough but isn’t anything when you’re first starting out?

Though, this isn’t really about how we got started though, this is more about what you encounter along the way:

  1. I would always suggest being nice to those that are in the same business as you.  Everyone we met when we first started out was nice and helped point out different things we could do to grow our business.  This helped us get to where we are today.  If asked, I usually try to do the same for people.  Now I won’t tell you how to completely get started because there is the internet for that but if you need little suggestions here and there, I got ya.
  2. GET EVERYTHING IN WRITING.  Man my dad annoyed me with that growing up but since opening this business, I truly understand it.  Whether its from dealing with a customer or a landlord or whoever, it is always best to have it in writing with both parties signed.  It seems like paperwork that will just get lost (I usually do lose it) but its something you can always go back on if a problem arises.  PS if you take a picture of it with your phone, that counts too! 🙂
  3. Actually read what you are signing and make sure you understand it.  If you have a contract that doesn’t look up to your liking, get a better one.  Sit down with that person and work out a new contract together or bring them something you have drawn up and get it figured out.  You want to make sure you and that person are on the same page, see number 2.  I wish I had listened to my husband when he told me this, he said he wasn’t sure about something and I said it’ll be fine no big deal.  I was wrong.
  4. Did I mention always be nice to people??  No matter how someone is treating you, ALWAYS KILL THEM WITH KINDNESS.  Your business is your reputation and vice versa, don’t mess it up because one person gets under skin.
  5. Your business is your reputation and vice versa.  Yes I am mentioning this again because the way you portray yourself on social media or person, whether be facebook, instagram or twitter, it all comes back to you.  Even if it’s your personal account but your customers have found you, be aware that what you say could turn some customers away.  I mean we have all seen the backlash Chick-fil-a & Starbucks has gotten over different controversial topics.
  6. Be real with your customers.  Let them see the real you, be one of them.  We are all humans and we all make mistakes or get behind or forget something.  Most people are willing to understand if you just talk to them and let them know what is going on in your world at that time.
  7. aka KEEP PEOPLE UPDATED.  On orders, on things if they’re running behind, on shipping if its taking longer than usual.  Some times going a little bit extra out of your way will gain you a customer for life.

Just remember it is rough, growing a business takes time.  Don’t get ahead of yourself and don’t get discouraged.  Build a community that supports you and always be nice.  You will meet good and bad people.  With the bad, just take it for what it is, learn that lesson and move on.   I know even 4 years into this I am continuing to learn lessons but we are also continuing to grow which is fine by me.

 

PPS Support Small Business 🙂

Another doctor..

I went to a Psychiatrist today.  Yep, me.  When it wasn’t presented to me that I should see one, all I could think, “I’m not that bad am I?!”

I went anyways because I’m all for figuring out what is going on plus this psychiatrist looks at all options and doesn’t just throw medicine at you which is a positive to me.  Let’s get in and dig into what’s going.

My psychiatrist believes in figuring out the root of the problem, is it hormone based which for me it most likely will be or am I lacking other things that are vital to my body that can cause this?  So I get to do several tests to help us find the root cause and then we will set a plan from there.  Fine by me, I just want to get this figured out.

Oh and I am getting a life coach!  My psychiatrist believes it will help to have someone help me focus and schedule my life the way I like it.

If you know me, I grew up on a schedule and no it’s not because my parents were “those” parents.  It was because I was competitive cheerleader as well as school cheerleader and we had schedules.  Go to school, pick up little sister, grab food and head to cheer practice til 930 then come home and repeat.  This was pretty much my life as long as I can remember and that meant that from the time I arrived at the gym at 4 until my practice at 630, I had to eat and get homework done.  Yes i had a bedtime, well sorta, it was straight to bed after we got home from practice.  Also if you’re worried that my sister who is six years younger than me stayed until 930, nope she didn’t, she actually had a bedtime. Ha.

College, I was sorta on a schedule my first two years since I was a cheerleader.  It kept me in line (not the right words, but you get it).  Once I stopped cheerleading, I kind of fell off for a while and just did whatever.  That’s when I started working and work helped me balance life again.  That’s the word, balance.  I mean other factors were in there sure but the work- school balance kept me balanced in life.

My job.  Yep we are talking about it again. In the medical field there is no such thing as a set schedule unless you work on a rotation and those are rough.  It is a set schedule but your schedule looks like this: Monday, Tuesday WORK. Wednesday, Thursday OFF. Friday, Saturday, Sunday WORK.  Now flip it.  Rough, I told ya.  So anyways when I started at the job I have now we could set our schedule based off a few guidelines but I had control.  We no longer really have that control and my world feels turned upside down.  Yeah sometimes I manage 8 days off in a row but then sometimes I work 6 out 7 days in a row and these are 12 hour shifts people plus my business, a husband and a baby.

I just feel like I can’t get a grasp on this whole work-life balance and it’s literally turning my world upside down.  Plus we are being slightly micromanaged at work which is making me feel like I am not keeping up with everything else in life like I should.  AKA I feel like I have no control.

So a life coach to help me through this debacle.  A psychiatrist to help me figure everything out.  Then hopefully, I’ll be Amy again.  Good days and bad days still happen but we are heading in the right direction.

Until next time,

Amy

 

yall, autocorrect corrects my name to Many lol

Thursday..

I get up early, get Bubs to day care and stop for coffee for myself and Ryan on the way home.  Time to nap but no my brain is going a million miles a minute, so what can I accomplish instead?  I call and get everything worked out with work so I can have a few weeks off to let the medicine start to work.

Why time off?  Well from what I have read is that you can have triggers.  Triggers are what makes things worse for the day or really kick starts those feelings.  I believe work one may be one of them, so some time off to get back to myself is needed.

Mom texts and says, “have time for lunch?” OF COURSE!  Getting out of the house is my favorite thing to do!  Wandering around malls and people watching is so relaxing to me even if I’m not purchasing.  So of course, I say let’s meet at NorthPark and eat at the food court, best people watching.

I get ready, grab my purse and out the door I go.  I make it to NorthPark which is about 10 miles from house at 1140, mom has until about 115.  I go inside, get to the food court and realize I don’t have my wallet.  I usually have a credit card just thrown in my purse but nope not today.  There goes all my plans to be out of the house today, I have no money and at thirty years old, I’m not about to ask my mom to give me money to let me shop and enjoy myself.

I text my husband and tell him what happened.  His response, “what a mess lol.”  Normal Amy would’ve been like yep, always a mess, always all over the place with a million things going on at once, but not today.

My thought process was as follows, “why would he say that to me? am I really a mess?  How do you not check your purse for your wallet?  My day is ruined.  Guess I’ll just go home and nap and try again tomorrow.”

Then I decided, no I am not going to let this slow me down.  I’ll buy a giftcard online to go get my hair done but of course I forgot to hit confirm appointment so I didn’t get it.  Then I looked at other places which were all booked but one, YES!  Nope their policies aren’t clearly written when you book(needed a 3 hour window or you weren’t guaranteed) so ended up cancelling that appointment.  Hours spent on this with no results.  I spent so much time on this I didn’t do anything for 2 and half hours of my day.

Thank god for my mom and my friend.  Mom bought Bubs some new clothes while we were at NorthPark which is what I was going to do.  It was my friend’s birthday so she said let’s have us time!  Hubs agreed and we got to go spend the night out and enjoy food, drinks, & gossiping!  It was definitely needed but this isn’t me.

The thoughts, the constant trying to fix everything and make it right until it drives me crazy, not me.  I also love to make people happy and I will go to extremes to do so, ask my husband, but not to the point I’m exhausting myself like I do now.  It’s almost like I can see or feel what I am doing but I just can’t seem to control it.

Friday,  you already tried to knock me down but I will push through.

It’s more common than you think..

Postpartum depression.  Is it something people like to talk about?  Not really.  Is it mentioned that it’s a possibility it can happen?  Yes, but they don’t tell you it affects 1 in 5 women.

I remember hearing about it some and thinking that won’t happen to me.  I was always under the impression you just missed being pregnant, all those sweet little movements, the connection you had but that’s not all, it encompasses so much more.

Bryant was only a few weeks old, super fussy,  Ryan was working and I was home unable to get out of the house and barely walk due to my c-section.  I called my mom crying because I just couldn’t do it anymore.  She left work to come be with me just for an hour.  I thought then is this what postpartum depression is?

I googled my symptoms and came across Baby Blues, the lesser of the two.  Essentially, Baby Blues is what any new mom feels in the first weeks as you adjust to a lack of sleep and a new life.  I talked to my family about it and the decision was to keep an eye on me.

It was never brought up again because things got better.  Bryant started sleeping through the night, we got him on a steady eating schedule, and I went back to work.

Work.  I absolutely loved being back at work, I was out of the house and got a break from the baby, it was great.  Ryan had Bryant on the days I would work and I would take him on my days off.  Then after a few weeks, he would start daycare!  This made things soo much easier.  But back to work.  There were changes going on(lots of them), my schedule wasn’t set(still isn’t) and the ICU I work in is 40 rooms with at least 20 patients on life support at a time.  A beast for sure and not for those faint of heart.

So now that I have rambled and feel like I have kind of set you up for these next words, I have postpartum depression.  Why or how you ask?  Let me tell you in a few short words.

Work exhausts me and I want to cry because I don’t feel like I can keep up with all the changes.  I hate work, I don’t care if I’m late and if I get fired, whatever (If you know me, this isn’t normal for me).  I’m exhausted when I get home to the point I don’t always want to hold my baby and some nights I don’t.  The days I’m off, I barely make it out of bed or if I do, it’s to work on Savvy not to help with Bryant.  Ryan has been holding it all together but all I can see is the little things he doesn’t do like putting water in the fridge, cleaning bottles or taking out the trash.  I just had 8 days off and accomplished nothing.  Nothing seems to make me happy anymore, actually some days are better than others to the point my friends were like are you sure?  Today though if you saw me, I finally broke down, hit that wall, red face with swollen eyes,  and I couldn’t stop crying.

We have talked to my doctor and we have a plan.   Tonight, I feel relieved to finally know what has been going on and to have my friends and family support.

Come join me on this journey.

The Spot..

I can’t believe this is my first blog about Disney!!

For those of you who don’t know, I am OBSESSED with Disney!! If I can’t go at least once in a year then it feels like my world is falling apart.  Okay that is slightly exaggerated but if you ask my husband, he would say it’s completely true.  Disney is my second home, my place to go to just relax, the place I go to get away.

Anyways the picture below is the first of many!

IMG_4367

We were all walking around Epcot when mom and I decided to stop in our favorite perfume store.  The cast member in there congratulated me on the new engagement and then told us a story about him and his wife.  They too are Disney fanatics(obviously he works there) and he was telling us 25 years ago they took a picture in their favorite spot in Disney.  The next year they came they decided to recreate the picture, then the next and the next.  It became their thing, same picture in the same spot with just the two of them, then one kid and then two kids.  As the years went things changed and every year they keep up this tradition.

So I decided we would start this tradition too! First picture is a few days after being engaged in April 2016 and the next one will be September 2017! Here’s to seeing how we change over the years to come!

A small scare..

Well, I think the title gives it all away.  So let’s get to it.

I was working Monday when the code blue alarm sounded over head.  I took off running because I was the closest respiratory therapist in that moment.  Once I got there, the room was hot and only got worse as it filled with people coming to help.  We were in there for an hour, adrenaline rushing and my colleagues asking if I needed help.  This is where I forgot being pregnant allows me to say yes please take over for me and no one will think twice about it.  But of course those words didn’t come out of my mouth and I was lucky one of my coworkers stayed with me making me switch on and off.

Fast forward an hour or so later, my heart is still racing, my legs feel weak and I just couldn’t catch up.  So I called my doctor and he told me to go down stairs to Labor & Delivery Triage.  Luckily I work where I will deliver and my doctor is here too so he was able to call them ahead for me.

So now I become the patient with continuous monitoring, IV, and the baby gets monitored too.  In the 6 hours I was in triage, my blood pressure and heart rate lowered a little but were still high for me which meant time to get an actual room.

Once we get to our new room, they explain to us how I will be doing a 24 hour urine sample to check for protein in my urine which could be a sign of pre-eclampsia.  So we started at 10:55pm Monday night which meant now I was becoming a resident until at least Wednesday.

It’s Wednesday as I am posting this, my blood pressure is still a little high at times but my protein levels in my urine are normal!  They aren’t really sure what caused all this so we are going to keep monitoring my blood pressure at home once or twice a day.

Before I forget, Baby Kaz is doing just fine!! He didn’t like being monitored so any time we would get close to his monitoring being over, he’d move and we would start again.  So what should’ve been 20 minutes of monitoring twice a day turned into an hour and half each time!!

Lesson learned.  When  pregnant it is okay to let someone help you especially in high stress situations.  Also drink more water.

Now time to enjoy my last hospital breakfast!

Oh, Half Way There!

I am writing this and I am just about a week past the half way point, but WE’VE MADE IT!

I am not going to lie, it hasn’t been easy.  I honestly thought pregnancy was just this cute little bump you get with weight gain and maybe morning sickness.

Nobody told me about the lack of sleep due to never getting comfortable or those awful leg cramps you get during your second trimester.  Or what about nausea? Luckily I didn’t throw up, but I always heard it was a first trimester thing.  Nope!  Mine is still going strong, not as bad as first trimester but still very much there.  Water intake is a must! They say eight glasses of water a day and you’re good. Not really, the dehydration pains are the worst and I promise I keep up with how much I drink.  I have learned since I work in healthcare, water intake for me needs to be higher.  What about when you stand up after sitting for a while?  You got to remember to take it slow and pause before taking that first step, you get some weird pains as the weight shifts around.  I now understand why people waddle when they’re pregnant, it’s honestly more comfortable that way.

My belly though, is a whole different story.  I honestly haven’t put on much weight, more of weight redistribution to my belly.  I have been asked if I am having twins or people say wow you’re big already.  Thanks, no it is not twins and believe me I know.  Unfortunately starting off overweight doesn’t help this situation, hence why I haven’t put on a lot of weight in the first place.  I am keeping a good eye on the scale but not dieting either.

So my belly is big which will tell you, he is going to be a big boy!  At 18.5 weeks, he was measuring a week ahead at 11 ounces!!  If you read those pregnancy apps then you know a baby around 18 weeks should weigh about 7 ounces.  But what do you expect when your husband is 6’6 and was a nine pound baby.

IMG_6831(I like this picture because he opened his mouth to smile and boy did it shock me when I saw it come across the screen.  My sister and I squealed! Such a special moment!)

Just because this post is me slightly complaining doesn’t mean I am not thrilled for our bundle of joy!  It really is crazy how our body works to create another human.  I mean have you ever just sat and thought about it?!  What a freaking cool miracle!

Also, I will post the name as soon as the hubby says I can, I am just waiting on him at this point.  HINT HINT!

XOXO,

Amy