Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sparkle & Spice

I started out my big girl career teaching kindergarten. I absolutely loved, loved, loved my job. I was blessed enough to work at a school where I was able to integrate my own creativity and unique ideas into my classroom and my lessons every day. I worked with fun and inspiring people who motivated me to create and innovate on a regular basis. The kids were so amazing too! It was incredibly fulfilling and I truly look back on those few years in my classroom as a colorful, creative, fun, wonderful time of my life. I definitely left a teeny bit of my heart in kindergarten.

So then my husband and I decided to have a baby! And I thought for sure the baby growing in my belly was a boy, so when SHE surprised us and came out a SHE, I swear I had visions of all things pink and sparkly dancing in a shimmery glitter cloud above my head in the delivery room. And thus, we began another blessed, amazing and fulfilling journey in life. And after the "I-can't-believe-I-have-a-girl-daughter" daze wore off, my husband began a different journey of going to the gym an additional four times a day, working in a secret laboratory trying to invent boy repellent, and researching the legality of implanting our daughter with a GPS. Is it possible for a man-turned-new-Daddy to simultaneously become the meanest guy ever AND a huge puddle of sweet Daddy teddy bear goo? (Different story, another day...)

In the very beginning, being a new Mommy made it hard for me to make time to tap into the creative part of my brain (which I later discovered was something that I needed). Doing the most important job in the whole wide world (IMHO), the job that I was put on this earth to do (AKA raise a human) sort of took up all of my time- which I, of course, loved. Okay, so I basically did not put my daughter down for at least the first three months of her life- oops, my bad. But as Stella got a little older and I got a little more experience under my belt, I was able to carve out a little time (usually during naps) to do some things that were fun and therapeutic for me. I made a New Years Resolution to take at least one art class that year. I started painting (okay it actually didn't start out as classy and fancy as it sounds- gallons of wine, champs and some owl paintings at a drink & paint class anyone?) which I still love to do. I started writing, which is also something I discovered that I enjoy. I devoted 100% of me to my daughter, but also was able to find myself again in things I really loved to do every now and then. Super important! Every Mommy (every person, for that matter) should find an outlet that nurtures their soul. Whether it's working out or running marathons (which I suppose is also working out) or reading or dancing or flying kites, you should find what you like to do and you should do it! You'll be a nicer, happier, smiley-er, better person because of it. 

So naturally, dreaming of little girly outfits and pretty accessories occupies a significant amount of my subconscious thoughts. Those thoughts eventually evolved into the idea that I could create unique, fun, stylish accessories for my daughter. So I started practicing. And I would like to think that I got better and that I continue to get better. And then my house overflowed with bows and flowers and glittery headbands. So then I needed to start selling them. That's when, about a month or so ago, I decided to open my own little Etsy shop. Because not only were my creations in literally every corner of the house, but in some sort of twisted irony, my daughter, in fact, despises having anything on her head. Unless, of course, it's a lampshade she just broke off of a lamp, or the avocado smeared trash can lid she's been hoarding for a week and a half- she likes putting those things on her head FOR SURE. In this stage of life, she clearly won't be modeling any of my awesome stuff.

Many people might think, 'so what? Etsy shop!? Big deal. How predictable and unoriginal!' But you guys, it was really scary! I think I might have had a mini anxiety attack or something on the day my shop opened. Throughout all of this self-discovery, guess what I also discovered? I am TERRIFIED of rejection! It is so intense putting yourself out there for the world to see! I give MAD PROPS to everyone out there that puts their work on display. Because a lot of people that decide to put their work on display probably really, really love and care about their work! And WHAT IF SOMEONE DOESN'T LIKE MY STUFF AND THEY THINK THIS IS ALL SO STUPID?!?! I might cry. Please don't make me cry! Because it's actually really fun and exciting! And I'm really enjoying working with other Etsy shop owners and customers and bloggers! Some nights I stay up so late making notes and lists and working on new things. I have lots of ideas that are exploding out of my head- ask my husband, he probably thinks it's super annoying. So if you have been thinking about doing what I did, you should just do it. You'll be happy about your decision.

In my shop, I feature accessories for all ages (ask my mom, she's a grandma now and I make her stuff and she likes it and wears it!). I love working with felt and tulle and of course, anything sparkly. I love creating fun color combinations. I am always on the hunt for different fabrics, materials, prints and embellishments that I can use to create something new. If I think it's cute, I'll probably try to make something out of it.

Being able to create new things makes me happy. It makes me even happier when others can enjoy and find a small bit of happiness in the things that I create. See? Happiness for everyone all around! So you should stop by my new shop. I hope that you find something you love!

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