I'm a mom that also works outside of the home, running my own business. Like so many of us, I get so much joy out of being my own boss but the guilt that lingers in leaving Tom Otis behind everyday, is something that I never expected. I was raised by a single mom of two children that worked two to three jobs at a time. It's all I ever saw growing up and I think what drives me to be the business woman I am today. Sure, I love that Tom Otis sees me going to a job I love day in and day out, but I also feel like I'm missing even the smallest moments. I think this is something so many of us face, even stay at home moms that work from home. How do we do it all? Each month, I'll be asking moms of many different types to talk about the struggles of being a working mom, what drives them, gaining (and keeping) perspective and so much more….
Lauren Bradshaw, founder and creator of Walnut Animal Society, started sewing her creations for her son Henry, not expecting to have the full fledged business that it is today. What started as one fox for Henry, has now blossomed into seven different animals and many different outfit changes as well. Her work is sold in stores all over the world and doesn't plan on slowing down anytime soon. She was kind enough to make time in her busy schedule to answer a few questions about motherhood and her favorite moments with her sweet boy, Henry.
1. What does 7 AM look like to you?
Henry has a clock that turns a different color when he can get up, so at 7am lately instead of shouting "Good morningggggg!" loudly from his room, he's been coming in quietly and surprising us. In his nearly four years, he's rarely left his bed without asking, and so to have him come in and wake us up is actually so sweet.
2. What's your favorite part of your day?
I love putting Henry to bed at night. No matter how the day went, whether there were lots of tantrums or lots of fun (or both!), bed time is usually a peaceful end to the day. We do the same routine every night; we read some books, sing the same four songs, say our prayers, have a sip of water, then say I love you. Somewhere in there, he'll usually find a way to pat my stomach and say hi to his brother who's due in July, or tell me something super sweet that he's learned makes me say "awwww" really loudly like "Mama I like you," or "Mama you are so beautiful." This definitely erases almost anything that didn't go so well earlier in the day!
3. With so many things going on with different channels of your work and family, how do you keep perspective?
Now that we live in Los Angeles, the ocean is so close to us, and there are two really great parks on the coast that I'll go to with Henry when I need some perspective. The amazing views of the ocean, combined with taking time to do something Henry really loves, help me refocus; being near the water, you can't help but feel like the world is so big, and all your worries are small in comparison.
4. What is your favorite family tradition and what does it entail?
I grew up without many traditions in my family so adding them to our little family is something we work towards each year! So far the main one that's stuck around is setting up the train at Christmas. We stick to a very specific schedule of getting the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving, and then set up the train with Henry. He looks forward to the warm cider and of course getting to start up the train for the first time.
5. What are your "can't leave home without" items?
I carry a small Clare Vivier sac bretelle purse everywhere, and the essentials are lipstick, phone, and wallet. The purse keeps things stylish and minimal and makes me choose what I bring very carefully. There's enough room to hold some apple slices, and a small dinosaur water bottle with which Henry is currently obsessed. We also usually don't leave home without Dale, my son's raggedy lion he's had since the day we found out we were having a boy.