Blog

How To Decide If You Should Resign From Your Job

once you become fearless life becomes

Over a month ago I made a decision that would impact my life –¬†I resigned from my full-time¬†Content¬†Marketing position.

Ultimately, that was never my goal when I started the job, but honestly that was the best decision I could have made. You are probably asking why. Good thing I came prepared to give you a beautiful explanation of why I chose to do the unthinkable and resign after only 4 short months.

When I got hired at this company, who I will leave anonymous for reasons you probably understand, I was beyond thrilled. For being a 25 year-old mom that never completed college (I was 18 credits away so give me a break)  I received what I thought of as an opportunity of a lifetime.

However, I soon discovered it was far beyond the “dream job” I always thought I would land.¬†

Let me interject with a quick snip-it into my college days.

While I was in college I fell in love with Public Relations. Not a summer fling type of love, but a full out in love, dedicate my life to PR type of love that only comes around once in a lifetime. Yes, I realize I am talking about an industry, but every person has love for their job. If you don’t then you are working for money and are probably not happy at the end of the day.

Anyways, I only needed 18 credit hours to graduate and low and behold I ran out of money to stay away from home so I moved back in with my family with the hopes to go to a local university. Fast-forward a year and I was holding my beautiful baby boy so college was put on the back burner.

Now that you have been brought up to speed on my college background, you can probably understand why I was excited to start my position as a Content Marketer. No degree and a Digital Marketing Agency was giving me a chance! Talk about luck because now-a-days it is incredibly difficult to land a job if you don’t have a degree.

However, it is not impossible to get a job without a degree and it shouldn’t mean you should give up on your dreams!

Sometimes resigning from a job can bring you new opportunities that you may not see at the time. Here are some reasons I loved the opportunity with this company, even if it was short-lived:

  • Content Marketing has endless opportunity!¬†Content Marketing and Public Relations are similar. You have the ability to be creative for your client(s) and you get to do work you are passionate about. I love to write, so Content Marketing is now deemed as a passion of mine. There are so many opportunities with Content Marketing thanks to apps on cellphones and the Internet. If you are an adult that still has a creative mind this is the job for you.
  • I learned a lot of valuable information.¬†With every job comes a lot of knowledge you did not possess before you had that particular job. After working in this position I now know more about Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing, and Digital Marketing that I did not know before. I will carry all of this information around for the rest of my life and I will only grow in my ¬†future career from all of it.
  • Agency Life is the life for me.¬†I have always leaned more towards agencies. This was the first opportunity I had to work in one and I can gladly say I loved the agency life more than I ever imagined. An open office makes for great communication and is honestly a brilliant idea if used correctly.
  • Smaller agencies can bring about the sense of family.¬†I have always liked working for smaller businesses because you have more sense of family. Maybe this is a millennial thing, but I love to build lasting relationships with the people I work with every day. After all, we do spend an incredible amount of time with them. Smaller agencies, like the one I worked at, make this easy to do. Especially if you work in an open office space.

While I did learn a ton , there were more reasons to leave than to stay.

Here are some reasons you will know a company may not be a good fit for you after all:

  • The work environment is¬†toxic.¬†Have you ever worked for a person that was so intense about their work, and so incredibly dedicated, that they expected you to basically¬†be them while you were in the office? Well I can sadly say I have been in these very shoes and it’s awful. Maybe you have a lot to bring to the table, but it’s hard to do that when your ideas are constantly shot down by upper management who tends to think their ideas are better than yours. Not to mention, if management is having a bad day it’s hard to have a healthy work environment when it is taken out on team members.
  • Nothing is¬†consistent.¬†Imagine working somewhere that you are asked to complete tasks only to be told after you have put the time and energy into it¬†that it is already complete. It is almost like a hard blow to you. It makes you feel like you are not good enough to do the job you were hired to do. It makes it difficult to focus after this happens to you. Not to mention if it happens to other team members as well. If you are in management at any company my suggestion to you is to have faith that your workers can complete the tasks you ask them to do. Even if they are not perfect, you teach them how to do it so the next time they know. Otherwise team members will not be able to remain confident and excel at their position within the company.
  • ¬†Questions are frowned upon.¬†Every person will have a question about a job position they hold at some point in their career. Not one single person in the world knows every thing about any given job. As humans I feel like we are meant to grow and learn as we grow up. If you are working at a job that management hates to be asked questions, it may be time to start looking for a new job. If upper management really wants their team members to succeed and grow with the company they will accept all questions with open arms. Personally, I need to ask questions, especially if I have been asked to complete something I have never done before. You should work somewhere that you feel comfortable asking questions to do the best that you can possibly do.
  • If quality over quantity is ignored.¬†To me, quality should never suffer, even if you are on a strict time frame to complete a project or task. First, and foremost, the quality a company puts out showcases who they are. If your employer wants to take on as many clients as possible and wear workers thin to the point that quantity becomes higher up the chain than quality, this is a huge red flag to get out. Not only does this reflect poorly on the company, but it also will turn around and reflect poorly on you as a team member for the company.
  • The morals and ethics of the company are the complete opposite of your personal ones.¬†While it is more than likely impossible to find a company that has all of the exact morals and ethics you have, you should at least have a ton in common with the company you are employed at. If they are all the complete opposite though, this is a huge sign it’s time for you to pack up your desk. One way to determine if it is just you or not is by looking into the turn over rate of team members with the company. If they cannot keep team members for an extended period of time and are constantly holding job interviews, this is a sign that something is clearly going on.

What are the red flags you look out for when you start at a new company? Do you see these in the interview? How long do you stay with a company that has morals and ethics that counteract your personal ones? Would love to hear what else you would add to this list as well! 

Three Reasons Management Needs To Treat Team Members With Care

Read time: 4.30 minutes

When you are a team member of company you expect them to always have your back, and your best interest, in mind.

Why? Because as a team member you always have that company in your best interest. You always have their back, because you work for them and care a great deal about the company.

There are companies that have their priorities mixed up though. Upper management may act like a hierarchy in the sense that you are just a number to them. They make you feel as if you are replaceable, even if you are the best of the best.

The truth is, all team members were hand chosen for a reason. They shined bright in the interview and got hired to perform tasks asked of them.

Here are three reasons team members must be treated with care by upper management.

1) Your Team Members Are NOT Replaceable

Sometimes upper management, especially those new managers, think team members are replaceable. I want to point out how untrue this way of thinking is.

Each team member has something to bring to the table. Something that another person doesn’t. Not one single person thinks exactly the same as another.¬†Obviously, each team member was brought onto the team for a reason.

Having a diverse office of each generation can offer insight into the way other people think. This can greatly benefit the office and business.

Back to the members of management that are new to the game. When someone has never managed before takes on a management roll they may get a power trip.¬†I think this is where a lot of management members come up with the whole “replacement” thing.

I have personally worked for managers that think like this. It makes the work environment toxic and all the team members can think are one slip up and they get fired. Performance will decrease and no one will want to work for the company.

Once management realizes every team member is unique and has lots to offer they will get past thinking like this. A business cannot run on a management team thinking this way. It is just not possible!

2) Team Members Are More Than Just a Number

Sometimes, management tends to think team members are just a number. They are a pay check and all they deserve are a desk and that check.

This is just wrong!

Team members are people, just like management is. It is important for all businesses to remember this. The best way to show your team this is by having some fun in the office. After all, all work and no play makes for unhappy workers.

If you treat your team members like they are just a number, you are asking for a crew of zero to work for you. Take time to show you care about your team.

Plan fun things for the office once a week, bi-weekly, or even monthly. It can be as simple as a morning breakfast, going out to lunch as a team, or having happy hour after work.

Get to know your team so they are not just numbers and a liability to management. Showcase them on the company website and hold fun contests within the company. It keeps the office light-hearted and shows your team members it is acceptable to have fun at work. Not to mention, productivity will likely increase.

It is also important for upper management to realize people in the office will become friends. Let’s take a second to look at the numbers.

Your team spends 40 hours,¬†at least, a week together. This averages to about 160 hours a month and minimum 1,920 hours a year. That’s a lot of time with one group of people!

Friendships will happen and this is important for upper management to realize. It is not a bad thing and can build an incredible team of workers.

Being a millennial I can personally say many millennials love the sense of a “work family”. After looking at the hours you spend with the people you work with it shows how much time¬†you are with team members.¬†Millennials¬†tend to want to bond with the people they spend a lot of time with. This is a good thing!¬†

3) They Have Your Back So You Should Have Their Back

When you hire people to work for your company, you are hiring people that think like you do. These individuals have the same interests as you. They also have something else to bring to your company, which is why you hired them in the first place.

When you build your team, you build it with trust. Therefore it is important to have your team members backs. They are fighting to prove they belong with your company. By showing you have their back is important to them and helps them have confidence in their work.

It also shows you have faith they can perform the tasks you ask of them. Individuals that are not meant to work for you will come and go. No matter what, always prove to your employees you trust them from the start.

While it can be hard for upper management to let go of tasks that they have performed prior to bringing on new team members, there comes a time when they have to hand over the reigns.

For example, I have worked where a member of upper management was the only one that had performed certain tasks. After my training was over I would be asked to work on a project. I would put in the time, ask questions, and complete the task(s) to get the response it was already complete. There was no communication from the person whom assigned me the task to let me know it was complete. Not to mention, I would regularly ask for updates.

This type of behavior breaks the trust between the team member and management. Team members are eager to complete a new task that they have never done before. It is exciting and makes the team member feel important to be assigned something new.

However, if the person assigning tasks does not have the team members back it will break trust that is in place. Asking someone to do a project and then turning around and doing it yourself wastes time and money. The team member more than likely succeeded, but they will never know. Their work was most likely tossed out because management completed it first.

Building trust with team members is crucial if you want your company to succeed. So is showing your team that you truly care about them.

What other tips do you have for upper management to work well with team members? What is a situation you have been in that has hurt your work relationships with management? Would love to hear your thoughts! 

The Millennial Stereotyping Needs to Stop Immediately

For whatever reason, millennials have been deemed one of the worst Generations. This is a stereotype if I have ever seen one and as a millennial myself it sickens me to see the things people say.

Now, I am no specialist when it comes to Generations, but I can tell you one thing Рnot one single person in this world is perfect. If you think you are perfect you may want to stop reading this post now.

I recently had someone tell me that when it is time to¬†vote millennials don’t get out and vote. However, I completely disagree¬†with that statement. ¬†This is the first year I have been following along with the elections, but I am still aware, and always have been, of what is happening in the world. This will be the first year I am voting, but I know a ton of people my age that¬†go out and vote, and have since they were able to.

We want change, so why do you think our generation is fighting so hard for that change to happen?¬†During the Baby Boomer generation a lot of changes happened¬†and I can guarantee that the generations before them were not happy about those changes. But instead of the Baby Boomers getting bashed all the time, they get all of the praise. But aren’t they the same ones that are fighting against LGBT laws that are being passed? Aren’t the Millennials the ones fighting to get those laws passed?

We want to see change and we are fighting for that change to happen.

While I was in college I was told that the work world was highly competitive and it would be hard to get a job straight out of school. That started the fear that I would not be able to find a job. Most jobs require you to have experience, but how do college grads earn that experience?

The answer is obviously internships, but how is a 20-something year old supposed to live off of little to no income to gain the experience they need to land an entry level job? I was lucky enough to have three internships while in school. However, I was taking summer classes to help me graduate and working full time to pay my bills. Two of my three internships were unpaid and one was minimum wage.

Millennials have a very strong work ethic, and I am living proof of that.¬†Maybe you are thinking, “No they don’t, they all feel privileged”. That is a flat out false statement. Every generation has those individuals that feel “privileged”.

I can tell you every Millennial I know has worked very hard to get to where they are today. For instance, I have been working and paying for my own things and all of my bills since I was 15 years old. Want to call me privileged now? Need I even mention the fact that I am a single, full time working mom.

The way society bashes millennials needs to stop, and it needs to stop now. Like I previously mentioned, my age group is fighting for change. Change that will make the world a much better place to exist in.

Just because we are not following in the footsteps of the generations before us does not make us a bad generation. We are pushing for change in the world but that does not mean we are bad decision makers. Privilege may come to some in my generation, but that does not mean every single one of us is privileged.

Maybe the problem with millennials is we state our opinions and we stand our ground on those opinions. If that makes us disliked by people in our society then I do not feel sorry about it. Remember, we were raised by the generation before us, who were raised by the generation before them and so on.

Instead of other generations fighting against us, they should be fighting with us. 

What are your thoughts on each generation? Do you think millennials deserve this unfair bashing? What will happen with the generations after the millennials? 

[Thursday Coffee Talks] Mumford and Sons, Grey’s Anatomy, and Gardening!

In all honesty I feel like I have so many favorite things in life. Favorite movies, books, apps on my phone… you name it!¬†

Sometimes I wonder if it is normal to like so many things. In reality though, why should it matter how many things I love? As long as I am happy, and the things I love make me happy, then life is great.

In the past month I have become completely obsessed, so to speak, with two things I have loved for a long time and another that is new to me.

Let me just say, when I get excited about something I really want to share it with everyone.

Grab your cup of coffee, or tea, and enjoy my favorites this week. Oh, and since this has been going on for a few weeks I should probably share with you how I like my coffee. Straight up or with a little cream.

Mumford and Sons

Several weeks ago I had the absolute pleasure of getting to see one of my all time favorite bands live. Let me just tell you how absolutely amazing it was. I am still on Cloud Nine from this concert because it was the most amazing concert experience I have ever had in my entire life.

If I could relive this concert every day for the next year I would definitely choose to do so. Their singing sounded just like listening to their album in my car. So flawless and enchanting!

No matter the cost, next time Mumford comes to town I will be there! Not to mention, I touched Mumford Marcus at the concert! He walked right up the stairs beside my seat and I touched his back! How cool is that!?

Yep, life complete.

Grey’s Anatomy

There is this great thing called Netflix that allows a busy, working mom like myself time to catch up on shows (from years ago) that I never got to watch when they started.

With that being said, I have watched Grey’s Anatomy briefly before, but I am currently obsessed with this show! I know everyone under the sun has already basically seen all of the episodes, but I am just now getting to watch more than I saw previously and it is amazing.

A big reason I love this show is because of the life lessons it actually teaches. In each episode there is an underlying lesson waiting to be told throughout the entirety of the show. Not to mention, it makes you feel like you can become a surgeon if you ever really wanted to.

Oh, and not to mention each episode keeps you on your toes with all of the drama going on! That group of people are so close it makes you want to go out and find your Christina to match your Meredith.

Gardening

Okay, so maybe I do not really have a green thumb, but recently I have decided to plant flowers and Basil and I have successfully managed to keep them all alive!

The flowers I bought were already sprouting, so I just planted them in pots and they have been blooming like crazy. However, the Basil I planted as seeds and today I noticed five little sprouts.

There is something amazing about planting a seed and watching and helping it grow! This is the first time I have ever decided to have a little mini garden on my patio and I am already in love.

Sometime very soon I will be happy and proud to say the basil I am cooking with is from my very own patio that I planted and grew all by myself with the help of my toddler of course.

With summer right around the corner, what are your top three favorite things? 

[Thursday Coffee Talks] TRESemme Dry Shampoo, To-Do List, and Slack

I want to start this Thursday Coffee Talks off by saying Thank You for bearing with me while my computer was sent away to get repaired.

The past few weeks have been a little hectic due to getting my computer fixed and moving, but all is good and I will be back on track from here on out with the normal Tuesday/Thursday blog schedule.

This week I have three awesome things to share with you that will make your life as a mom a little easier and your job more productive. The first is a hair product I absolutely adore, the second is old school but still works, and the third is the communication tool we use at the company I work for.

Grab your cup of coffee, or tea, and enjoy my favorite items of the week!

TRESemme Basic Care Dry Shampoo

I do not know about you fellow moms out there, but some days I do not have the time to dedicate to my hair. After all, chasing after a toddler all day calls for a pony tail anyways. This product has helped me out tremendously if I just do not have the time to wash my hair one day. My hair takes forever to dry and if I have to take a shower in the morning I do not have the time to waste on drying my hair.

I have never been a fan of dry shampoos, but when I switched hair stylists recently I was talked in to trying them again. I found this one at the local grocery store and I always keep a bottle on hand now. Plus, it is actually bad to wash your hair every single day so taking a break from time to time is a good thing.

Unlike other dry shampoos, this one does not leave a weird film feeling on my hair. It literally soaks up the excess oil, as long as you follow the directions correctly. Apply to much (not that I have ever done that) and your hair will feel like a hot mess. I would recommend this to any of you ladies out there that need a quick hair fix on those crazy busy mornings you may have between getting your little(s) ready and making it to work on time.

Handwritten To-Do List

Yes, you heard correctly –¬†handwritten to-do list. I kid you not, I feel so incredibly productive when I write out an actual to-do list. Not only do I write it, I go a step further to color code my list based on what needs to be done by what day of the week. Once I have completed a task I mark it off of my list and sleep better at night with a feeling of satisfaction from how productive my day was.

Once I have my list written out I always plan out my week based on my to-do list in Google Calendar (I mentioned the Chrome Extension in my last Thursday Coffee Talks article). I color code accordingly based on what each task is. I also place my high priority items either at the top of my list for first thing in the morning, or right after lunch. These are the two times of the work day I am most productive so I always try to knock out the most important tasks I have then.

While some, or maybe even most, of you may think handwriting your to-do list is old-fashioned, it is something I throughly look forward to at the beginning of each week. It helps me to stay calm and collected and to know I am completing what I need to complete, when I need to do it.

Slack

Last, but definitely not least, this week is Slack. This communication tool is making huge strides in the business world and I am so happy we use it at my job. The features Slack offers are endless.

The whole purpose of Slack is to have excellent team communication and to cut back on the numerous amounts of emails sent each day. They are also in the process of some awesome updates, including video chat integration, which will make it easier to communicate with team members that may not work in the office – think freelancers or those who work from home some days of the week.

The ability to create channels based on each client is also great to keep track of what is going on in the client campaign. I would highly recommend this tool to anyone who owns a business and is looking to find an easier way to stay up to date with team members and client campaigns.

What are some of your favorite products? Is there an app you just can’t live without? Would you like to be featured in my weekly Thursday Coffee Talks series? Leave a comment below and let me know because I always look forward to hearing from you!

 

 

[Thursday Coffee Talks] Chrome Extension, Boomerang, and ESPN Tournament Challenge

Last week I introduced my brand new weekly series titled Thursday Coffee Talks and I am following up my first post with three items that I have fallen in love with in literally the span of a week.

When it comes to productivity I am always looking for tips and tricks that will save time and help motivate me to get more work done. This Google Chrome Extension is literally kickass and I would strongly encourage everyone that uses Google to go download it RIGHT NOW.

Yes that’s how awesome this extension is.

Honestly, I do not download new apps very often on my phone, so when I am intrigued by something I will download it and test it out to see if I will use it or not. This app has been around for a little while and I just discovered how cool it is and now I want to use it all day long!

Oh, and for all of you basketball fans out there, I have joined the ESPN Tournament Challenge craze and started two brackets. I love basketball but this is a huge step for me because I have never cared about sports enough to actively follow along and participate in something of this caliber.¬†Just being bluntly honest here! Don’t judge me.¬†

Grab a cup of coffee like I have right now and enjoy some of my favorite things that you might find helpful in your life! 

Google Chrome – Google Calendar Extension

When it comes to productivity I always nerd out over articles and tools that will be beneficial to me or anyone I know. As a working mom, I have to literally write down everything to keep track of what I have going on at any given minute of the day.

In the past, and currently, I have always used Google Calendar because I have legitimately always had a Gmail Account.  

With that being said, I have no clue how I never knew about the Google Calendar Chrome Extension until now, but this extension keeps me on track for getting all of my tasks completed in a timely manner while I am at work.

This extension also keeps me on track of any personal appointments I have outside of work in my personal life.

If you are looking to get organized and stay on track with tasks at work or not miss any appointments, I seriously encourage you to use this extension. You will not regret it.

Plus, this is completely free to use it which is a huge added benefit. 

Boomerang

I can honestly say I rarely download apps on my phone because what tends to happen is I will download them, learn about them, and never use them again.

Guess you can call me a creature of habit when it comes to the apps I use all of the time. So when I find a new app that I fall in love with I quickly become attached to it and it is added to my list of daily apps.

Boomerang has been around for a while, but I recently downloaded and WOW was I missing out on the fun. Now when I am out and about I look at anything and everything I can possibly use as a Boomerang and open up my app and hit record.

This app is really awesome and unique, plus it is super fun to use. If you are active on Instagram this will open up a whole new creative world for you as far as Instagram content goes.

This app is free and you can implement it into content for work or use it personally. I recommend just testing out because the worst thing that will happen is you won’t like it and you can simply uninstall it, but like I said I have fallen in love with it.¬†

ESPN Tournament Challenge

My last favorite of the week is something that is well known to all of you basketball lovers out there.

Yes, I am talking about the ESPN Tournament Challenge! 

I have never really been into sports, and by that I mean I enjoy watching watching games but I have never chosen favorite teams or truly followed along on what is going on. With that being said I can tell you that basketball is easily one of my favorite sports to watch. When I was in high school and college I attended all of the games I could because I actually understand it to a certain point and basketball is just fun to watch!

At work we decided to create a group on the ESPN Tournament Challenge site and I decided I would join in on the fun and give it a try. Let me tell you I have discovered something about myself –¬†if I just try following along with a sport I love I actually really enjoy it!¬†

I am now active in two brackets and following along with the tournaments – I am actually watching sports at free will! This a major step for me and being the mom of a boy I know this will only benefit me in the long run.

Now I can only hope by the end of this tournament I will choose one or two favorite college teams and keep up with them next season.

What are some of your favorite products? Is there an app you just can’t live without? Leave a comment below and let me know because I am always looking for something new to try!

How to Manage a Toddler Meltdown in Three Easy Steps

Let’s face it. Being a mom has many amazing rewards, but there are also some challenges along the way. This can be especially true when you are a new mom and your child has officially reached the toddler stage.

I don’t know about you guys, but everyday is an adventure when you have a toddler. The mood swings, the temper tantrums, and the laughter that comes along with motherhood during the toddler years is a rollercoaster filled with all of the emotions you find in the movie Inside Out.

By the way, if you have yet to see that movie go buy and watch it right now! It will be well worth your money and time and your kiddo will love it for a family movie night! 

Something I have found myself asking is how to handle meltdowns that happen as quickly as the flip of a switch. One minute your toddler can be happy as a clam and the next –BOOM– screaming at the top of their lungs because you took their sippy cup to refill it for them.

Meltdowns are no joking matter and I have come to find most of the meltdowns my son has are due to communication problems. He can only say a few words and sometimes I don’t understand him and vice versa. When my son has a meltdown there are a few things I do to help him through them.

Remain calm or the situation will only escalate. 

Our toddlers rely on us to help them through any situation that occurs. This could be something as simple as a spaghetti noodle that fell on their shirt and upset them to the toy that fell on their toe and made them cry.

As a mommy we have to remember that these meltdowns are a huge deal to our toddler and if we get upset because they have been upset 95% of the day that will solve nothing and will actually make matters worse.

I don’t know about you guys, but I hate being told to calm down, it actually causes me to be more upset, so I can only imagine my little feels the same way when I tell him to calm down.

This stage is crucial in their development and we have to help them along the way and with as fast as meltdowns happen, they’re over in the blink of an eye and everything is back to normal like it never even happened.

Patience really is a virtue when it comes to meltdowns so just remember to breathe and count to 10 and you will get your little through this meltdown all while keeping yourself cool, calm, and collected.

Remember that whatever the meltdown is over is a big deal to your toddler even if it is not to you.

Sometimes it can be easy to forget that something that may be minor to you is a huge deal to your little one. For instance, my son has recently become a picky eater and sometimes if I put something on his plate that he loved 24 hours ago he gets upset over it because in a 24 hour span he has decided not to love that particular food anymore.

Or when it’s time to go to bed and he wants to keep playing so I start to put his toys away… talk about a major meltdown at that point.

When your little cannot communicate what they want to with you they can get frustrated and this can bring on one of these meltdowns. My son is always so happy-go-lucky and a big goofball so when something bothers him I know it is a huge deal to him.

At that point I know he is having this meltdown because he cannot communicate what is wrong with me.

Try to cheer your little up when they are nearing the end of their meltdown.

Something I have come to find with my son is when his meltdown is almost over and he’s starting to calm down I will try to make him laugh to lighten the mood. I’ll give him a big bear hug and a smooch on the cheek and usually poke his belly because he can’t resist laughing when his belly is poked.

Usually I am pretty decent at realizing when his meltdown is coming to an end, but¬†sometimes when I think it’s about to be over he starts up full blast again so I just give him a few more minutes.

Like I’ve mentioned earlier, it is easy to forget the communication barrier that is there with your toddler so they may not understand how to calm down and they just need a minute to be upset over whatever is bothering them.

I have come to find though that the cheering up method works quite well. Every child is different so you have to find what works best to help your toddler get over this little meltdown and it will soon be forgotten that it ever even happened.

What are some things you do to help your toddler overcome their meltdown? 

 

[Thursday Coffee Talks] L’Oreal, Sumatra Coffee, and TipSee

First and foremost РHappy St. Patrick’s Day!

CdwCFHTUkAAYLUf

To all who will be out and celebrating, be safe and responsible. Remember… if you are going to have a drink or two do so responsibly and Uber it home. 


 

Today I am bringing you a whole new Thursday series titled Thursday Coffee Talks. This series will be dedicated to bringing you my top favorite things (parent/child products, apps, makeup, coffee, etc.) of the week. Not sure about you guys, but I absolutely love hearing what other people’s favorites are, so I want to share my favorite things with you guys!

For my first Thursday Coffee Talks I have chosen a makeup product, my current favorite coffee, and the app I use to track money. Grab a cup of coffee¬†and take a look at my favorites. ūüôā


L’Oreal Voluminous Miss Magna Mascara

This mascara is my top favorite in the makeup world. Not only is it affordable, but it is easy to apply and just as easy to remove. In the past I have always run into the issue of my mascara clumping Рeven after applying it correctly. Talk about frustrating! I absolutely hate when this happens and I will toss the mascara in the trash without second thoughts and run to the store to grab a different kind.

I must say, when I find a mascara that I fall in love with I do not really change it up for a good amount of time. Guess you can call me a creature of habit, but when it comes to mascara (my favorite makeup to wear) if it gives my lashes volume and length and is easy to apply and remove¬†I’m all in and committed to the product.

My favorite color is blackest black because I feel like it really enhances my lashes. Another great thing about this mascara is it doesn’t smudge throughout the day. I can apply it at 7AM and it will still be on my lashes and look just as great as when I applied it by 10PM. That’s a huge perk for me!

HT Organics Coffee ‚Äď Sumatra

¬†Recently I made the switch over to organic coffee and I must say you can definitely taste a HUGE difference between organic and nonorganic –¬†I promise I‚Äôm not just saying that!

When I bought my Mr. Coffee Single K-Cup Brewing System I tried extremely hard to find a reusable single brew filter that fit the coffee maker correctly. For some reason K-Cups actually freak me out (maybe it’s the thought of plastic getting that hot or the extreme effects all of that wasted plastic has on our environment)¬†but being the only one really drinking coffee at home it was a waste of coffee when I was brewing by the pot. I really only drink one to two cups in the morning or throughout the entire day and it broke my heart to waste all of that delicious coffee!

After I finally found the correct reusable filter I started looking for a good organic coffee by the bag that was close to my favorite K-Cup coffee (Green Mountain Coffee Organic Sumatra Aceh Coffee) my biggest challenge was finding an organic coffee at the grocery store that matched the Green Mountain brand I had fallen in love with.

The Harris Teeter brand has easily become my favorite because it tastes almost exactly like the Green Mountain Organic Sumatra. I love a great, bold coffee that has a delicious flavor about it and this is the one! Plus, you know it is great when you go to bed at night excited to wake up for that delicious cup of morning coffee.

TipSee

 If you are a mommy, or not, and work in an industry where your income is based solely on tips (bartending, waiting tables, etc.) then this app is for you! I have been using this app for two years now and I absolutely adore it. While I have a salary based job now, I still bartend on Friday nights and need a way to track the extra income I have and for the past 4 years I have held jobs that my income was solely based on tips.

Sidebar ‚Äď for all of you mommies (single or not) out there that work jobs where you have to live off of tips I know what it is like and more power to you for being the strong mom that you are! You are doing an amazing job of providing for your child(ren).

This app allows you to enter the amount of hours you worked that day and the total money you made in tips. It breaks down how much per hour you made that day and the total amount of money you made each week, month, and for the entire year. While I have only used the free version because it does everything I have ever needed it to do, the paid version allows you to add more than one job to track tips for. Plus, the paid version has some awesome features worth looking at.

The reason this is an app I cannot live without is because it has honestly helped me manage my money better than I ever have. Physically seeing a breakdown of my earned money makes me pay close attention to the amount of money I am actually spending as well, so if you have a job that is based on tips I highly recommend this app to you! You can download it on the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store.

What are some of your favorite products? Is there an app you just can’t live without? Leave a comment below and let me know because I am always looking for something new to try!

How to Manage Your Time Wisely as a Working Mom

A huge challenge working moms face is how to manage their time wisely between work, raising your child(ren), and still having time to yourself. Not to mention, if you have split custody working around all of the extra scheduling that comes along with that.

This may sound difficult, but it’s actually easier once you sit down and plan it out. I would know because I fit all of the criteria listed above. I work an 8-5, currently bartending one night a week for the extra income (and because I love creating new drinks), and I raise a toddler. Oh yeah, I have a boyfriend and a family that I enjoy hanging out with as well.

The term “stress” is an understatement in this scenario. However, I have managed to make things work and I am going to share my top¬†three tips with you.

1. Get Organized

Where to begin with this topic… Back in December, before I started my current 8-5 job, I was bartending full time at night five days a week and 3-4 days a week I have my my toddler (we switch up 3 and 4 days every week, so if I have him 3 days this week I will have him 4 days next week) who is an early riser.

I was not really that organized, mind you I have always been a fairly organized person. Once you have a child though you can lose your ways and forget how AWESOME a planner/calendar can be. Not to mention, working nights and getting home fairly late and having to be up early is extremely difficult – at least for me!

So when I started my new career I rediscovered how awesome planning things out really is. For work I plan out what I will be doing a whole day in advance so I can stay on track with my tasks and get my work done efficiently. I also write out a to-do list on an actual piece of paper with an ink pen, because yes this is still a thing, and crossing items off of a to-do list makes me feel incredibly accomplished.

I’ve gone a step further and hung up a white board calendar.I write in each month and any appointments my son and I may have, upcoming birthdays, etc.

(I’m honestly not a huge fan of calendars you hang on the wall and have to flip from¬†month to month because I manage to keep it on January for an entire year.)

In all honesty, being organized makes me much happier because I do not feel like I am living in a world of mad chaos 24/7.

2. Make Plans Ahead of Time

Now I know this can be difficult because plans do change last minute sometimes and there is no way around that, but if you can make most plans ahead of time it helps so much when you are a working mom!

There are still certain things I procrastinate, such as buying birthday gifts and cards, and even planning out holidays and what not. What can I say, we all have our flaws, but planning this out, especially if you are a parent with 50/50 custody, helps so much in the long run.

Like I’ve said, not only do I have to plan holidays around my family with my toddler, but we also tend to spend time with my boyfriend’s family as well.

The more you can plan larger events in advance, the better it will be in the long run, I promise!

3. Spend You Days Off Wisely

Something I try really hard to do on weekends when I have my son for two full days is limit the amount of errands we have to run so I can soak up every minute I have with him. While I thoroughly love getting out of the house, I also enjoy just hanging out with my little sidekick and playing with toys and teaching him about life on those full days we have together.

Usually we make one big outing on the weekends to the store and I save smaller trips and errands for the weekdays after work when he’s with his dad. I enjoy every minute I have with him, and I don’t want to take away from that by dragging him all over stores on the weekend when we could be doing something much more fun like coloring or exploring the great outdoors.

All in all, it is totally possible to be a working mom and have time for your child.

There will always be small bumps in the road but finding a way to balance things really helps out. My son is two and it has taken me almost two years and a major career change to find the balance that works for us, and now that I have found it I will not give up hope that I can truly make things happen while being a full time working mom.

To all of you other working moms out there, go you! You are doing an amazing job and don’t ever forget that you are working to provide for your child(ren) and your family.

Even on the days you feel like you’re struggling to make ends meet, just remember you have a full force support system out there of other working moms who know the pains and struggles you are dealing with. With that being said – don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you ever just need to vent or talk!¬†

What are some other ways you have found to balance your time as a working mom? Any tips for new moms just going back to work?

This Past Christmas Eve

This may be several weeks late, but it is something I just have to get off my chest.

Christmas is supposed to be one of the happiest times of the year. When you have a child it makes it that much happier and that much more special. My son is about to be two, so this past Christmas was his second Christmas and I was beyond thrilled to see his reaction to all things Christmas. Last year he was still too small to realize what everything really was and this year he loved all of the lights and of course the presents!

Like I mentioned in my last post, I had to wait to take Michael to see Santa until he got over his spell of pneumonia. I also have to plan everything out with him because for those of you who do not know I have 50/50 custody with his dad so we work together on creating weekly schedules and Holiday schedules that are fair to both of us, and most importantly fair to little Michael. I had planned to take Michael to see Santa at the beginning of December, but the many adventures of life change plans sometimes.

Considering Michael is a year older than he was for his first Christmas, and his first trip to see Santa, I was super stoked to see his reaction this year. I was not quite sure what I was going to get: scared, screaming, crying toddler OR happy and excited about this jolly old man dressed like Santa. I decided on which mall we would be visiting and made reservations for The Ultimate Santa Experience. It was different than any Santa I had visited as a kid, and way different than the one I took Michael to see last year.

Our reservation was for Christmas Eve, so that morning Paul and I got Michael ready and started on our 30 minute trip to visit Santa. We arrived at the mall and made it inside with ten minutes to spare for our reservation. We waited about 30 minutes before we got in line to enter Santa’s house. When we finally made it in the first room of the house we got to attend “flight school” where Michael got to learn to fly the sleigh, with a lot of help from the adults of course. The setup was super cool and there were two other families going through each room with us.

After we all completed flight school we moved on to the “sleigh ride” where there were three rows on a life size sleigh in a movie theater like setting. Paul, Michael and I sat in the middle row and the other two families were in the rows surrounding us. The flight simulator started and it actually felt like we were riding on Santa’s sleigh! All of a sudden, about what I would consider half way through the sleigh ride, families that were in the room next to us attending flight school came running the the room where we were on the sleigh ride and things took a turn for the absolute worse.

As a parent, the very last thing you would ever expect to happen when you are merely bringing your toddler to visit Santa at the mall on Christmas Eve is to hear the words: gun shots, shooting, lockdown. I have never in my life been as terrified as I was that very moment. My heart stopped. I held my son so tight to me, not knowing what was going on. One minute we are all enjoying our Ultimate Santa Experience, the next there is a shooter in the mall. As one of the dads rushed to block us in the Santa house, and I sat there holding my son tight and having Paul tell me everything was going to be ok, I had so many thoughts going through my head and the biggest one was why.

Why would someone decide to come into a mall, a mall that doesn’t allow guns mind you, with a gun on Christmas Eve? Why would someone open fire in a mall on Christmas Eve? Why was this person not thinking about all of the innocent bystanders? Why, why, why…?

When we were finally ushered out of the Santa house after police had placed the mall on lockdown and had the situation under control, we basically sprinted to our car. I remember looking around while we were leaving and seeing Starbucks cups people had clearly dropped when they heard the gunshots and as we were going through the food court it looked like a war zone, honestly. These are images I will never get out of my head. This is an experience I will never forget. I am incredibly thankful the situation didn’t turn out worse than it was.¬†I hate that someone had to lose their life, on Christmas Eve to say the least, but I am also very thankful no innocent bystanders were hurt from stray bullets.

20151224_142223.jpg
A picture I captured as we were going to our car.

As a mother, and after gathering my thoughts on the whole situation, all I can say is I am thankful my son is ok. I am thankful Paul and I are ok. It could have been anyone rushing through the door of the sleigh ride we were on, and I am so very thankful it was just the innocent families that actually heard the gunshots because we didn’t hear them.

While I didn’t get a picture of my son on Santa’s lap or get to experience his reaction to Santa this year I won’t lose sleep over it. There’s always next year for Santa pictures. I am just happy I got to spend Christmas with my family and for all of the good laughs to get us past the whole mall situation.