Family Business: Scrappy & Fiesty
For the longest time I thought my husband and I should not work together. Not that we would not work well together, but I was going to be a 40 hour a week wonk and he would be the freelance artist. Well, life is kinda funny, isn’t it?
I realized that he, like many artists, simply need someone to promote them. Some else gets the paid gigs so the artist can focus on their art. Most business arrangements operate with a division of labor. I have proven that I am a good sales rep at Serv U-1st, so I can do the same for my own company. Turns out, John and I work together very well, so this arrangement makes sense.
Of course, finding the time to grow this business is a challenge. I have one day a week right now to devote to Walch Art Group, given my limited child care. I don’t know how other parents work from home. My daughter is 3, and it is incumbent upon me to give her quality parenting. Which means working from home when she is home only happens when she naps. And even then I have to work quietly. Oh sure there are some super parents out there who would be able to to make it work… I have not figured that out yet (just now, she woke from a 1 hour nap & I was being quiet. Sigh.)
And boy, do I get suggestions on the parenting front. Our daughter has a language delay and is slightly autistic (although she is maturing out of that rapidly). A couple dear friends with all good intentions asked me if I ever get her out. What do they mean by “out?” Do they think I keep her locked in the friggin’ closet???? We go out all the time!!! The county autism specialist who works with her was impressed by the fact that I take parenting classes, take her to activities, researched FIVE different preschools (visited two of them twice) before deciding on a school for her. The pediatrician said the same thing about my persistence in getting the best for my daughter. Her former Albina Head Start Home Visitor said similar. We worked the Home Visitor for Three Years, and am still eternally grateful for her instruction, kindness, advocacy, and visited four of the preschools with me before I decided on one. My daughter looked forward to her visits.
And nuts to the naysayers about my “getting her out there.”
Parenting is certainly my first job and I am glad that it has worked out where I ended up not working outside the home for the first few months of her life, so at least one parent could be with her full time and I could nurse her and not have to pump my milk on my break, which I would have to do if I was working outside the home. Sure, there were plenty of post-partum tears mourning that I had earned a Master’s degree the previous year and my career track was looking less promising. I’ve had only part time work since my currently employer called me back to work, but boy is that working out nicely. The work hours are flexible, and I can walk to work some days.
It took awhile to really learn how to focus while working on Walch Art Group from home one day a week, but now it is almost like a treat. It is difficult to stop for lunch even, because I get so focused. Most people who work for someone else spend most of their day watching the clock. Now, I mourn when the work day is over.
In the meantime as I gear up to make phone calls, work on the web site, get projects ready for Kickstarter, we still get WIC coupons, of which I am also grateful for. But is it ever specific – Federal line item shopping. And if you grab the wrong size and you find out this while in the check out line, and there are always 5 – 10 people behind you, you have to go back and get the correct item. Oy vey. Luckily no seemed to be giving me dirty looks or muttering curses under their breath as I did this twice recently. At least not audibly. Then, wouldn’t you know it, the bulk raw sugar bag broke as I was putting it in the grocery bag. I salvaged most of it. I’m sure someone who witnessed my faux pass the other day is blogging about my comedy of errors right now.
WIC Mom, MPA.