Here we are in week two of our Mompreneur Series! If you missed our first post in this series, click here and you can read all about Wendy Zook from Wendy Zook Photography.
Today, I'll introduce you to a fabulous mama out of California, Renae Gonzalez. She is the owner of a children's boutique and party place called Little Miss Everything. This supermom hosts parties, events, and designs/creates ALL the t-shirts in her boutique! Custom orders, mother-kid duo shirts, you name it.
Yep, I'm about to go buy it all, too. ;)
Let's learn about Renae, her business, and all about how she handles it all while being the mama to two beautiful little girls.
Now it's time to hear Renae's story!
Why did you choose to start your business?: I always knew I wanted to do something creative and be a part of the community. I was a teacher before I got pregnant with my first daughter and when she was born I knew I wanted to do something where I'd be able to have the flexibility to raise my daughter and still work.
What words would you use to describe your business?: I think the best way to answer this question would be our Brand Values: The Golden Rule (We believe in treating others like we'd like to be treated), Encouragement (We are supporting girls do be whatever they want to be), Creativity (We offer unique party themes and products that feed girls imagination), Confidence (We have the belief that we are all uniquely capable of what we set out to do), and Presence (We take the time to celebrate life's special moments and milestones). The answer to this question according to my six year old daughter Payton is Birthdays, Princesses, Pink, and Girls :)
Now, tell me about those little ones of yours! Names, ages, personalities!? : I have two amazing daughters. Payton just turned six and my little assistant in every aspect of my business. She loves our shop just as much (sometimes more!) than I do and she always has input and suggestions. She is a very creative soul herself and she's such a big helper. Emily is three and she's my spit fire and our entertainment. She loves making people laughter and won't turn down an opportunity to be my little model for our shop. Just being in the same room as her is guaranteed to put you in a good mood.
Would you do anything different when being a mama and business owner - and if so, what would it be?: This month makes five years being a business owner and I'm six years into being a mom and each day I learn something new or how to make juggling the two easier. I've learned to make more realistic to do lists and realize things that may take a short amount of time if I was solo will take sometimes twice as long with my girls but that's ok. I've also become more of a morning person and at the same time a night owl because if I have an opportunity to get work done alone it has to happen. It took me way too long to learn these things and now I know it's ok to realize your not going to get everything done because your a mom, a wife, and a business owner. I also would have learned to ask for help sooner. I'm still struggling with this one. Once I started realizing I can't do it all and asking for help my business and my family life all started being a little more successful.
What is one key moment you remember that you struggled to balance being a mom and business owner?: Our shop is a brick and mortar business so when we are open there are times when I'm working, just me and my girls. They are getting older now so they understand that when a customer comes in, I need to tend to the customer and they have to try to do whatever they are doing independently but it hasn't always been as easy that. When my little one, Emmy, began walking and talking it rocked my world during store hours. There's no reasoning with a baby and sometimes she would melt down and need my attention. Most of my customers are moms themselves so they would understand but it never felt very professional of me. We stopped working in the store during store hours for a while but I needed to remind myself I'm doing this because I can have my girls at my shop if needed and they are a huge part of my business. It's definitely not always an easy balance.
If you had one key piece of advice for a new mompreneur, what would it be?: Ok, I have two that I think I took way too long to figure out and I think they are both important. The first would be to be organized in every aspect of your life. Know it won't always go as planned but if your organize you'll save time and keep yourself feel reinventing the wheel. I am definitely never as organized as I'd like to be but when I take the time to plan things out or schedule my day things always go smoother than just winging it. The second piece of advice would be don't be afraid to ask for help (in whatever aspect you need help for). If you need a sitter for a day, ask for one. If hiring an assistant or employee will help do it. Worrying about the financial aspect took me way to long to pull the trigger and get extra help but once I finally gave away small responsibilities life and being a business owner got easier.
To see Renae's online store (seriously, I'm sending this to all my mom friends who have little girls!) visit her website at: www.littlemisseverything.com
Photo Credit: Fiesta Flix Photography - http://mrhtavares.wix.com/fiestaflix
To submit your mompreneur story, reach out to me here and I'd love to feature you!