Now that my kids are settled back in school I am ready to tackle the rest of 2017. I hope that you had a fun summer. I had a fun, full one. The majority of my summer was filled with family, friends and ministry activities. As you have probably noticed, I haven’t posted that often the last couple of months. I’m totally fine with that since I’ve set up my life to work around my family’s schedule instead of vice versa. I did do some work though. 🙂 A couple of work highlights from the summer (that I’m not sure that I mentioned ) was an appearance on a food segment of Poppa Peeke’s Parenting (Little Things). I also led a website workshop as part of a Fashion Angel Warrior conference for fashion entrepreneurs.
Back to catching up… Each season I try to answer one pressing question in my life. For instance, earlier in the year I wanted to figure out how to stay fit in my forties because my past habits were no longer giving me my desired results. I learned that (for me) intermittent fasting (since I don’t like breakfast anyway) and reducing my carb intake was the best combination. Even with being a bit “looser” during the summer, this strategy has helped me to lose 15 pounds since the start of the year. (Yay!) For the summer, my question was whether or not it was time for me to go back to the corporate workforce. I have been working for myself for around 13 years and it has been great. I love the schedule flexibility but I don’t love the paycheck flexibility. (When you work for someone else, you don’t have to be concerned with net 30, net 60, and the like.) I didn’t have my heart set one way or the other though because I value time over money. My theme scripture was the following:
Plant your seed in the morning and keep busy all afternoon, for you don’t know if profit will come from one activity or another–or maybe both. – Ecclesiastes 11:6 (New Living Translation)
After discussing it with my husband Reggie, I applied for some jobs. In addition, I worked on Our Family Tees, the family t-shirt business that we had started to teach the kids entrepreneurial lessons. (Whether it is a full-time job or a side gig, I strongly believe that almost everyone should have a side project.) The best way for me to figure out an answer to a life question is by praying and taking action, so that is what I did. What happened? I was offered a work from home job but it wasn’t paying enough to be worth the bother. I learned that if I did take a work from home job, then it would have to pay better than the minimum that I make monthly on my own. Then, I was presented with a work outside of the home job opportunity. On paper, it seemed perfect. It was a combination of writing articles and WordPress which is primarily what I do anyway. The only problem was that the job was based in Long Island. This helped me to realize that I do not want to work outside of the home right now. At most, I can see myself working outside of the home twice a week…and it would have to be an awesome job match. As far as the t-shirt business, to my pleasant surprise, we hit our first financial goal ($800+/month in profit) in August. The coolest part was that we were able to donate 10% of that profit to the Houston Food Bank to help those who were affected by Hurricane Harvey. (Yes, we are raising our kids to be conscious capitalists. Money is a means to an end, not the end, for us.)
So what did I learn from this experience? Basically, I am unemployable for now. I don’t like to say never though so I’ll just say that it would have to be a financial necessity or a fabulous job in order for me to give up the lifestyle that I currently enjoy. My favorite part of the day is still walking my kids to school and I appreciate being nearby in case of emergencies. Sean, my youngest son, was excited about the answer because as he told 13-year-old Michael, “You had her at home for 13 years. I should have her at home for at least 13 years too!” (Michael could care less whether I get an outside of the home job now.) Sean continued his argument by saying to me, “And besides, you already have a job anyway.” I love his logic. Please know that I realize I’m fortunate to have a choice in the work matter. I’m grateful.
Now, I’m excited about the fall. I really don’t have a pressing life question for the end of the year. Rather, I plan to work hard until December 18th and take the last two weeks of the year off to celebrate with family and friends. So far…
1. I have some clients (writing and WordPress) in my queue.
2. I am getting all of my holiday research done so that I can have holiday gift guides up on Mom in the City during the first week of November.
3. My soul food ebook is finished. I’m just waiting to release it until it’s officially Autumn since comfort foods tend to be more popular during the cooler months. [I loved both of the covers below. Unfortunately, most testers didn’t (sniff) so the final cover is a hybrid.]
4. I’ll be speaking at the True Beauty Women’s Conference in October. Last year, I spoke about being true to yourself and it went really well. I’m not sure what I’ll be speaking about this year yet.
5. I’m excited to see what the fourth quarter will bring for Our Family Tees. This is my first time really doing e-commerce and I’ve read that the fourth quarter is exciting with Halloween and Christmas. (One of our Halloween t-shirt designs, Freddy Jason Michael Hannibal Norman & Me T-shirt, has already started selling naturally without any promotion on Amazon. I guess that it really is never too early for Halloween!)
Now, we’re all caught up on my end. Please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to let me know how your summer went and what you’re looking forward to seeing happen for the rest of 2017. If there is anything special that you would like for me to cover on the blog – recipes, restaurant recommendations, questions about any family-friendly activities or gift options – let me know. If I don’t have the answer, I’m pretty sure that a friend or writing colleague will have it. With that being said, don’t be ornery and ask me to make something ridiculous like galantine to prove a point. Remember…I’m a home cook. 🙂