It's been a while since I have written on the blog - not for lack of things to say I can assure, but it has been a crazy busy time... followed by a week of the flu. We are just starting to re-enter the world.
Although I have had lots of different posts in my head, I am actually just going to do one big one to catch up as that seems a little less overwhelming than the other option.
As you know I quit my work with PP at the end of last year. well, almost, he hasn't replaced me yet so I am still doing some bits for him, but I am not spending anywhere near as much time on his business as I was. I am just doing the things that are absolutely necessary, and none of the bits I used to for free. This gave me lots more time to myself, for almost a week, and then I managed to find other stuff to do.
Firstly I need to get my BabyCalm and ToddlerCalm classes up and running again. A combination of factors, (moving house, the venue I was teaching from being taken over by new owners a few times, and then spending every day with my Nana) meant that I haven't really done much with that for a while. The plan is to run classes from my home once we move, that way I won't lose money on the venue if I have a small class or need to cancel, and I won't lose clients when the venue has a change of management/plan/use as has happened for the last 6 months. I also really liked facilitating courses in my home - its a much nicer atmosphere (I got that in feedback too - not just my own opinion about how nice my house is!). The only downer being that I have to have it clean and tidy which can be stressful sometimes when you have a toddler, but its good to have a reason to keep it nice. Anyway, we are still waiting to move, so I can't do much in the way of classes yet, so my work in that area has really been about getting things up to date and getting my CPD sorted for this year, A) to get me back into and B) as I can't do anything from my house until we move (more on that later).
Also, I am not really sure what the direction of these two companies is going to take, so I need to be a bit prepared for anything. I don't want to invest all my time in them as it could end up that it's not going to be viable long term. But I like them and I want to build on what I have, so with that in mind, for BabyCalm I signed up for a short course on Essential Oils for Pregnancy Birth and Babies and did the AromaTouch Training. I chose this because I have long been interested in Aromatherapy, in fact I used to sell the oils a long time ago, and as I mentioned before I started studying natural medicine in Australia and would love to continue. So this seemed like a good way to get back into BabyCalm and start a new/rekindle an old branch of interest. With regard to doing something seriously with Natural Medicine interests, I first have to find a course that suits me - i.e thats grounded in real science and research not just someone's ideas. Aromatherapy is quite a good place to start in terms of having evidence. Anyway, I really enjoyed both the training events and have since given three free Aromatouch treatments to complete my training. I find it almost as nice to give the treatments as to receive them and hope to keep that at a regular part of my life too, though unfortunately I am not able to charge for the treatment as I don't have a formal aromatherapy qualification. I am continuing my studies of aromatherapy in an informal way for now, mostly by reading and using them for our family wellbeing.
For ToddlerCalm I decided that I would be interested to do something on play or forest schooling. On doing some research in this I found a great course on storytelling and story play that is being held close to where my sister lives, so she could look after BB for me while I did so I signed up for that. A few days later, three different people that I know mentioned the idea of me becoming a Barefoot Books Ambassador. I have thought about doing this for a while, mostly just because we love the books, however I have always found myself saying that now is not the right time. Three people saying that perhaps I should give it a try, along with the fact that there was a promotion on in January that made it cheaper to get started, and of course the need to develop a new income strand were enough to convince me. I figured that in the very worst case scenario, we would just have a some extra books from a book company we really love at wholesale prices... and so I signed up.
It has been a bit of a whirl wind, but I have to say that so far I am blown away by what an amazingly exciting and supportive business it is. The training and guidance that are sent out and provided through webinars is really great, and makes it really clear what you have to do and how you can do it so that you can make your business successful. You can essentially do as little or as much as you like, some people are making more than they did on their previous full time job, others are doing the minimum, which is selling about £50 worth of books a month on average - almost a personal account by the time you add in the birthday presents you can get through it. I am hoping to add a couple of hundred pounds a month to our bank balance out of it, so nothing too crazy, but enough to make it worth while. I am also doing a few fundraisers and things too, and kids activities so it feels worthwhile and I am enjoying everything about it so far. I also really like the little challenges that they set to increase your sales, this motivates me. What I am loving most is the fact that all the work that I am doing is building MY business, which is much better that when I was trying to build someone else's (particularly as he didn't seem to care so much about it as me!)
So work wise, I am pretty set up for a while I think.
With regard to the house, we have no progress as yet. The people we are buying from can't find anywhere to move to. The real estate agent is on my back saying that I'll lose my buyer if they don't find somewhere soon, but it's not really in my hands. I have had a look around to see if there are other places I would consider, and there are, but I am sticking with this one for now. Hopefully they will find somewhere soon. I am just trying not worry about it too much, if it happens it happens, if it doesn't there will be other houses and other buyers and our house is quite fine in the mean time.
I had one of my most challenging mum weeks last week. BB had been a little off colour for a few days, but not so bad. Then on on the Wednesday I got a call from nursery to say that he was really unwell and had a high temperature. I went to collect and bought him home. He slept for a while and then proceeded to vomit in pretty much every corner of the house. It turned out to be the flu, which I then caught. I was at my worst in Sunday just as he was starting to feel better and go stir crazy having been stuck in the house for days. I was hard. Very hard. I was not the best Mum I can be that's for sure. On Monday he went out to nursery and I stayed home to rest up. That was great - gave us both a break from each other and gave me a chance to catch up on some sleep and start to get better myself. We both still have bad coughs, but are on the whole OK again now.
Finally, spring really seems to be springing here over the last couple of days. I am so excited about this. Dark dreary winter days really don't do it for me, and a little hint of spring is very energising!
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