Great Infographic for Any Parent.

We have all been there, in a crowded store, in a restaurant. The infamous scene of tragic toddler meltdown. You are NOT ALONE. This helpful infographic sort of sums up the way it happens and helps shed light on how to deal. Enjoy!

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Motherhood Mondays. Running a Household.

Running a Household is a lot like running a business.

I recently read an interesting article in Parents magazine about the competition between SAHM and Working Moms. No where was there a mention of a Work From Home Mom – so I thought I would tackle that topic since more and more women are choosing this venture. That is what I am now too, a WFHM. I like to say I am the CEO of the Castillo household, but that isn’t entirely true. The fact is my husband, Adolfo Castillo plays a HUGE part in how we get things done and how our girls are cared for. I truly don’t know what I would do without him. Makes me really thankful to have his love, help and support in life, like an extension of myself. Anyway I digress, this isn’t about him as much as it is about the things that we have found to be helpful in nailing down the way your life balance can be.  I have come across other resources I want to share and those are all below. This journey of learning balance is a continuation and is far from being over or completely in check.

First things first, the list of the helpers aside from my wonderful husband that help keep the household and all it’s employees running smoothly. (So far)

1. If you don’t have it already – bookmark this site. Money Saving Mom has so many awesome freebies and tips – I was so happy to find her!

2. Make a deal with each other and/or yourself that if you are stepping over a toy that is not being played with, pick it up and put it away. It’s easy to have the floor of your living room look like a sea of little people and plastic foods.
3. Get a system going in order to do a little laundry, everyday. With two adults and two girls, clothing is the biggest job of the house next to the meals. I am still perfecting it but little things help, like hanging up as I fold, and only doing full loads and only doing one at a time throughout the week. come to the realization early on that the laundry is the one job that is NEVER complete. NEVER because you wear clothes everyday.

4. Take back the family dinner. This site and story is a great start to setting the table for your family back on track. My friend gave me a copy and even though it says to do sit down dinners after kids are 2, we started and it’s great. Dinner is when we chat about running the household. We catch up and figure out where we are at for the day and week. Are we on budget for food shopping, do we need more diapers at school, how is the weekend looking? Oh and we have a HUGE whiteboard in the office that helps us write notes to each other when we think we tell each other things – it helps.

5. Plan for your plan to change. Just as it says, moms we are all mostly planners and when you are running a household, business and working out of the home, CUT YOURSELF SOME SLACK, shit is going to happen, just roll and expect things to change and your plan to adjust.

Overall – Remember – Everyone is different, every household is different – find what works for your household, there is no right or wrong, just  Don’t stress about it – figure it out. If you are a WFHM like me, balance is the key to a successful business, marriage and time for self (it’s NOT selfish). I work when there is work and in between naps. I try to stick to a scheuled similar to what the baby would be on at school so I can still service everyone properly. Set a schedule for work, home and life stuff. Make appointments two weeks out if possible to meet with clients and to get your hair done. If you are lucky like me, you have a mom or mil that can help watch the baby while you sneak away. We found that most of our stressors were that we were not communicating enough and that left the other partner feeling like they were doing more or getting the shaft. When we talk at dinner, agree to pick up as a team and share in the household and kid duties there is much better balance for us both. Goodluck and keep talking.

Inspiration Wednesday.

A little inspiration for the day. Take the one you need. If you need them all then take them all. Happy Hump Day.

beautiful_sky_white_flower_50143-1600x1200“You are going to do great today.”

“It’s not your fault, things happen.”

“She loves you, you are so lucky to experience love.”

“Just think, soon a vacation.”

“Good job with that, what a great thing.”

Motherhood Mondays. When they are sick.

Today I did nothing really. Nothing but take care of my sick little girl. Thank goodness for my moms second pair of hands. When kids are sick, our world stops. No client work today, no cooking, barely any cleaning. Just catering to the boo that had an earache, that cries out “Ouchie” every few minutes. Now I am full of gratitude that 97% of the time we have healthy kids. God bless the parents with chronically ill kids. I don’t know how you do it.

The evolution of the portfolio

When I was hired at my last full time corporate position, the portfolio I carried was rather clunky. It was an 11×14 black case with coil bound plastic sheets. If you have been doing graphic design for 10+ years you know EXACTLY what I am talking about. After I was hired, I put it on a shelf, high up and forgot about it.

CaseI interviewed again two years later, and upgraded my book to a sleek black case conversion. It was a 12 x12 slim art supply case from a local craft store and I (well my boyfriend at the time, now husband) sanded it and spray painted it a modern matte back. This was 2004 and everyone was carrying unique, expressive standouts portfolios. Why- they were all the rage. Fast forward present day, well yesterday… I took no traditional pieces. I only carried my iPad. On it, loaded as a PDF in iBooks was my clean, sleek portfolio and lucky for me, the agency had Apple TV and I was able to connect and project my beautiful work on the big screen, talking about each piece and rewinding quickly if needed. Revolutionary. Technology changed my life yesterday, I didn’t have to spend hours prepping mounting sheets or trying to move Super 77 from my thumbs… No this was it, from now on this is how I’d present.