tips & advice



my family and

little ones



Raising little ones is all consuming. We worry if we are doing enough… we worry if we are doing too much… We find ourselves concentrating so hard on our littles & wonder what is left of the person we were before their arrival. Mama, we all feel it. Let’s journey together, lift each other up & be a village for one another…



How do you start your day?



My new focus for 2019

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For me, this was a question that arose as I was looking for ways to juggle the balance of running a business and being the hands on, available for hugs & cuddles mom that is my top priority. You see, from the time I was little and imagined what I would do with my life, there was always a vision of me working from home, a little one coming over mid-work and getting love as they needed it. I imagined kids coloring at my feet while I created at a drafting desk…

It was a vision that was all well and good, but like many childhood visions, void of the struggles that make the reality of that scenario.

Yes, that image is largely my reality and I could not be more grateful for it to be so, but the reality is that juggle is hard and my inherited perfectionist tendencies make me want to be the best at both roles – mother & business owner. And doing so meant that I had to make a choice. I could continue in the state that my nature pushes me – the one that idles through the days without a set plan, takes things as they come, with no thought to schedule or commitment, spontaneous and relaxed all at once… Or I could create some structure to my day, deciding that the ambition I had to be and achieve something more was a bigger driver than my desire to amble.

But make no mistake, I am still a creative first and foremost. Sitting at a desk and having a predictable set of daily tasks would never be what filled my soul with the passion that drove me to start my photography business. And so I dove into listening to how other creatives set up routine and systems for productivity in their days…

Time and time again, the ones I admired most, the ones I perceived to be achieving the type of success I strove to achieve, the ones who seemed at peace and balanced – they all seemed to start their day in similar ways. And as I learned more, it was not just the creatives of the world – but largely all those who think of as at the top of their games, who started the same…

So what is the key, that secret sauce. Well, it seems that gratitude is the key. It’s as simple as that. From my own very unscientific research, those who are doing the most, are the most thankful.

But it seems they are more than just thankful. It seems they start their day, each and every day in a mindset of gratitude. For some that is right down what they are thankful for each morning before their feet hit the ground. For some that is starting the day in prayer and giving thanks to their God for the blessings in their life. For some it is quiet meditation or yoga to center their heart and their mind on the things they have and know themselves to be. But whatever the form, these achievers I admire all seem to start their day with thanks and praise to something more than themselves for the blessings in their life…

family in front of christmas tree
The top items on my first list of gratitude.

And while I consider myself to be a person who is filled with perspective on her blessings, thanking my Lord for them regularly, starting my day focused on them is not a practice that I have done previously. I do try to end my day with prayer, thanking the Lord for the wonderful things in my life – but I have not yet focused on those gifts from the start of the day. Rather, I have fallen into the typical trappings of the modern era. – I wake, turn off the alarm on my phone and, with it still in hand, flip to my email to scan for the “important things” that have come through overnight & then switch to social media to see what is happening there…

The beginning is always today.

-Mary Wollstonecraft

 found in The Five Minute Journal

But today I started day one of a new practice – I woke and came into my study, closed the door in the silence while the house still slept, and I got out my new journal dedicated specifically to the task of starting my day in thanks. Having seen in writing that which fills my heart and matters most, I definitely felt more centered to plan my day – a habit that I had fallen out of in the busy-ness of a move and fall life over the last few months…

Sure I am on day one, but it feels good. And starting in my own thoughts, my heart, my own longings, goals and purpose has me already feeling more empowered to conquer the day. It’s a bit like McRaven’s speech about starting the day by making your bed – not because anyone cares if your bed is made – but because it is a simple, achievable task which if the rest of the day falls off the hinges, you can still come to your bed at the end of the day and see the tangible results that you have achieved at least one thing that day.

And so here I am, 2 hours into my morning, without a peek at email or a whisper of social media. Sure, I will have to turn to both before the day is out – running a small business in 2019 does not allow for one to tune out either entirely. But I have set my heart and my mind right for the day…

So here I go – with my new commitment to start each day this way. Hold me to it & ask me how it goes…


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