Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Follow up on Country Living WE

I must apologize for the delay in getting this information out to you but, as you can tell I have been on the run and having fun.

First and foremost, I can’t say enough about the event and the creative team at Country Living Magazine. The organizers of this day were the most open, honest and friendly people you might ever meet. They made you feel right at home amidst a sea of creative women.
Sarah Gray Miller, the new Editor and Chief the Country Living Magazine, has a fresh, approachable personality and I think she will breathe a new sense of life into the magazine.

I had the chance to speak with Sarah personally and I think we are just beginning to see a friendlier Country Living.

I attended the event alone but ended up sharing a dinner with some new friends I had met via my blog or via their blogs, but some of them I had never met before. Either way it was a brilliant way to cap off a full day of creative and thoughtful thinking.

I even saw an old work mate from my days at Anderson Consulting, now Accenture. It seems we were both looking for some inspiration to escape from our every day routines.

I am assured that I found my inspiration and many answers to the questions that I had running through my head for sometime now. Listening to the line up of energetic and creative women brought together by this event, gave me the lift I needed to keep on thinking and searching for what it is I want out of life.

Many of them started from absolutely nothing, the most they had was a creative idea and the tenacity to work towards its development and eventual success. They worked hard enough to experience the success that honored them as a Woman Entrepreneur of the Year by Country Living magazine.

The common theme I extracted from the speakers was this: work hard, know your customer and believe in yourself and your product. Now from the 20 pages of notes I took there are many more details in those three little themes, but for brevity and not loosing you along the way I think I will stick to that.

The event did cause me to ask myself the magical question….”how much are you willing to do to make yourself a success?” Right now with three small children and a husband who works too many hours himself, I don’t have an answer to that question.

That question nags me most often but most times I arrive back at the same thought process. I have waited my entire life for our kids and adore them more than anyone will ever know. I feel my job at this point in time is taking care of them and guiding them the best that I can. God gave me this opportunity to leave my legacy in life, and that legacy is my children.

What ever my business would evolve to be wouldn’t leave as big a mark on this earth as the good things my children could bring to society.

Yes, I want them to see their mom as a strong, creative, self sufficient person but at the same time I want them to know that no matter what they are the reason I work so hard. Finding the balance between “work/development time” and “mom time” has got to be the hardest balance women have to face. Whether it is right or wrong…my “mom time” is more important to me.

I will continue to EVOLVE, but not with that full speed drive. It will be at a slower pace and more deliberate one. The kids will be gone all too soon and I will have plenty of time on my hands. Who says you can’t start a business later on in life….nothing is impossible.

With that said….

Below is just a sampling of some of the people that I met and a small sampling of their creativity. They were so amazing and so open … they asked questions that I have never even thought about and for that I am thankful to have met them. I look forward to keeping in touch with them and watching them EVOLVE.

Kasey Buick
Lola B’s

Jeanne Oliver
Bushel and a Peck

Red Otter Custom Books and Journals

Sanctuary Arts at Home
Jen Rizzo

These folks are new friends I made while attending this event and I have to say I really enjoyed meeting each and everyone. Their creativity, drive and enthusiasm gave me a sense of inspiration and motivation.

Royal Tart
Tricia Blum

Glitter Works Studio
Laurie Davis

Seven Smooches
Jennifer List & Stacy Waddington

The Repurposed Home
Kathleen Quinn

Two Twigs Childrenswear

I have to give this girl the award for most outgoing, most passionate about her product, and most willing to put her self out there in order to promote her product. She was everywhere and you couldn’t help but be interested in what she was selling.

Sourvenir Cosmetics
Kate Kristiansen


Karin said...

Looks like such a wonderful event. I would love to go one of these days. I think it's really hard (for me personally) to balance the whole work/kids thing. So I totally understand the dilemma of doing both at the same time.....

Nice and Easy Antiques said...

Dear Janet, it sounds like you had a fantastic time...I'm so glad!! There is ALWAYS time later for business, dreams etc, but the time with your kids is NOW. I found a perfect balance for my life between kids and work and I will share it with you: my kids will always be first in my list. I will not miss a concert, an award ceremony, a soccer game or anything else, for that matter! because of my store. My sister and I will not think twice about closing the store if needed, whenever there is something going on with the kids. Is this a good business decision? Of course not!!! Do we make a lot of money? NO (the accountant could tell you that too!) but is the best mom decision. In response to the question they asked: I'm successful already. I have a wonderful Husband and 2 well adjusted, happy, creative teenagers that make me so proud! I work only 2 afternoons a week and my 17 year old boy still calls me every time to ask: When are you coming home Mom? Priceless!
Anyway, I'm sounding like Dr. Laura!!! LOL. Your kids are lucky to have you and they already know you are creative, strong and self sufficient, you don't need to prove them anything!
Sending you a big hug,

Artfulife said...

I just love that magazine. How awesome and inspiring to be able to go and surround yourself with other creative souls. I hope you do share some of the other highlights over the next few posts. Thanks for sharing all of those links, I'll have to go and visit a few later today.

Victoria@WhimsybyVictoria said...

Janet, thank you for sharing such an honest and open post with us! I too understand this. I struggle with finding that balance. My kids, husband, family...it is everything! I also know for myself to feel like I am being the best in all of these areas, I have to have that outlet and for me my blog and creating is that. So I have too been working hard on finding those balances and it is not an easy one. I adore you Janet and am glad you had such a great time! Whatever your decision is for the timing of your business, I am sure it will become the Evolution you had envisioned. Hugs to you!!


Firefly Hill said...

Janet..it looks like so much fun! (You all look great by the way) I almost went last year. But it coincided with the kids spring break from school, so I could not make it! You are lucky it is so close for you.

Jan the crazy lady said...

With you just being so conscience about how you want your children to see you, it will happen. You are aware and awake. That is all they need.

What a fantastic trip and opportunity. You lived a dream for all of us. I am so glad you got to do this. Country Living is a great magazine that inspires and helps our houses become homes.

Take on the day and continue to be the great mom you are :)

Ms. Tee said...

That sounds like so much fun. I'd love to meet all of them, as well. I already read several of their blogs. :) So glad you had a great time!

tracey said...

Hi Janet! I found yor blog through Jeanne's at Bushel and a Peck. How funny, I too live in Sugar Grove and am a stay at home mom with 3 kids! I have read through much of your blog and really enjoyed it (it's nice to see there is a fellow gardener here in SG land of the worst clay soil I have ever dealt with). Just wanted to say hi and that I am glad to have found your blog. Have a great day:)
no blog of my own...yet