From Washington to Washington

Wow, has it been a busy last 4 days. In the last 4 days, I’ve flown to Washington DC and back, made halvah from scratch and a from-scratch halvah cheesecake (yes, recipes will be posted! Until then, you can feast your eyes on this photo), spent a day with my family and participated in the annual Mastermind Business retreat. I am energized and tired, all at the same time!

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Washington DC was an efficient, productive trip. Though there are no cosmetic-legislation bills that have made it out of committee this legislative session, it’s important to continue educating lawmakers and their staff on our handcrafted industry and urge small business exemptions for any future legislation. Lawmakers were receptive to the message that small business does not function like a large, mass-scale-production line and that it’s important to preserve over 200,000 jobs in the U.S. by including small business exemptions in any upcoming legislation. New to this issue? Lots of historical information at these blog posts here (going back over 4 years!).

September 2012

The highlight of the weekend was Grandma and Grandpa Faiola visiting. Chris and I even got in a date night (thanks to Grandma and Grandpa staying in after Jamisen went to bed).

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We did our traditional early-morning hike. Every single hike, Jamisen walks more and more himself. This time, we didn’t even bring the Baby Bjorn front pack. He walked himself into a full 3 hour nap later on.

September 2012

We timed the train just perfectly. Jamisen is obsessed with trains right now. He flaps his little arms and makes happy-boy noises.

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Take a good look at these baby boy curls because they’re all gone.

September 2012

We cut Jamisen’s hair this weekend (eeek!). We got him a little hair-cutting smock (that will double as an art smock in the future) and he took the entire experience like the little man he is. As soon as we cut his hair, I ran out for the all-day business retreat so there are no great photos of him without his little curls yet but I’ll post them in the next few weeks.

September 2012I hope you had an equally lovely weekend (I can’t wait to catch up on your blogs to read all about it!). I’m excited for this week and to hit the ground running on choosing our new S.O.A.P. panel fragrances based on tester feedback (the suspense! the suspense!).

16 Responses to “From Washington to Washington”

  1. Justine says:

    Hello, I am the mother of two (2,5 years, 4 months) and am running a small soap business together with my hubby. But I am still wondering how do you manage your business and family. Is Jamison in day care or do you have him with you? What looks your typical day look like?
    I love your blog and your are a daily source for going on with what you love.
    Justine

    • Anne-Marie says:

      Great question – my days vary a bit based on when I work out but this is a pretty template. We are on a fairly disciplined schedule to make it all work. You have two and work in your house. I have one and have a nanny so don’t compare your output to mine – you have a way tougher job than mine for getting a lot done in the day:

      6 a.m. – get up
      6:30 – cook breakfast for Jamisen
      (sometimes) Leave husband to feed baby while I go run/work out
      8 a.m. Nanny comes
      8:15 I leave
      8:30 Arrive at work
      Work all day if I worked out in the morning. If I didn’t, take 60-80 minutes to go work out (includes shower time)
      4:45 Leave work to be home at 5 p.m. If I have an evening meeting, I try to schedule it at 4:30 so I can be home by 5:30
      5:30 Cook Jamisen dinner
      6:30 Bathtime
      7:00 Bedtime for Jamisen
      7:00 Talk to husband, eat dinner, clean kitchen etc.
      7:30-10:00 Emails/blog comments/Facebook questions
      10:00 Wash face, brush teeth, pick out outfit for next day, make to-do list, read
      11:15ish Lights out

      We don’t watch any TV in our house and that saves a lot of time. I do a ton of cooking on the weekends so we eat leftovers ALL week. By Thursday/Friday, they are pretty gross and we’re tired of them. Our house is not terribly clean. It’s functional but that’s the place that slides. =)

      With you having two kids and working from home, it is a vastly different situation than me. I am so lucky to have a great support team with a spouse that is my biggest cheerleader and a nanny that is a family friend and loves Jamisen almost as much as we do. My parents come up twice a month on the weekends and that’s a big help. I get extra stuff done, date nights etc… with both of them providing back up. I am extremely blessed with such a loving support team.

      My best advice is to always plan your week/plan your day. Have that to-do list and follow it. Plan on Sunday what you absolutely need to get done and then execute, come heck or high water. Make realistic goals and plans based on your life. Your kids are on different nap schedules, your 4 month old is probably still sleeping sporadically so be realistic about what you’ll be able to achieve. =) Life might be a bit slower now but you’ll look back at this building time, for your family and your business, fondly when both of them are in school and you have 7 hours of uninterrupted time to be productive! =)

  2. Pam says:

    Wow! you have a lot of energy. maybe you should try and market that. I’d buy some:) Loved the pics of the curls getting cut:( so sad to see them go…..

    • Anne-Marie says:

      I am blessed with a lot of energy – I think a lot of that is from working out daily and being picky about what I eat. Great fuel is essential to get me through the day. =)

  3. Susie says:

    This is not a business for me but I still appreciate what you do! And I LOVE “little boy cuts”, looking forward to the photos.

    • Anne-Marie says:

      I’ve been trying to get a good photo for three days and that little boy is NOT sitting still. They’re all blurry and weird looking but he looks like quite the little man now =)

  4. Sara Jane Tinker says:

    Fun stuff going on up there!! Especially love the train shot. We don’t have Amtrak in Tennessee. My niece’s little boys love trains and would love to stand by and wave one on!!

    • Anne-Marie says:

      He is OBSESSED with trains. Love love loves them. We can hear them from our house and when one comes by, he makes happy little noises and flaps his little arms.

      Amtrak runs on time so we can usually time the train pretty well – much to Jamisen’s happiness =)

  5. ruth says:

    And there’s that remote always within reach! My Cameron is 21 now & your updates bring back our “Remember When?…” memories. Thanks for sharing!

    • Anne-Marie says:

      He has hidden them ALL! We can’t find any of them right now. I did however find the missing egg beaters in one of his toy chests….

  6. Lona Bremer says:

    Thankyou so much for taking time out of your life to go to Washington to stick up for us little soapers. Ok I know that you have a business stake but really, it’s your time and energy that went there. We know and appreciate it!

    • Anne-Marie says:

      Thanks Lona! It’s been a long 4 or 5 years of legislation and trips to DC but all of our small businesses are worth it! =) Plus, what an amazing opportunity to learn about how government works and hone up on speaking skills. I appreciate your support.

  7. I smiled at this collage from top to bottom. Love the trains and a last look at the little mans’ curls. Adorable. And you look fantastic perched on the Capitol steps. Great job, I’m sure the lawmakers were impressed and thankful to you for providing insight and information to help them make the best decisions possible for the industry in general, and for small and independent business owners in particular.

    • Anne-Marie says:

      Aw thanks, Donna Maria! If they weren’t impressed by me in person, hopefully they’ll like the hand written thank you cards they should be getting any day now. =)

  8. Lori says:

    I remember when I was helping my husband run his shutter business and had a newborn,2,4,6,and 8 year old while home schooling. You may be busy, but it is a wonderful time in your life. My kids are no.w 14,16,18,and 21 and are very supportive of me in my soap etc. They even help out in packaging and at shows. I would not change a thing. Yes the three oldest are boys and still help a lot. Your son is going to grow up with a good work ethic and be able to work well with others. Never doubt yourself or let others say anything bad about you having a business and having a small child. You are doing more for him and others than you think. Keep on doing what you do, your doing great. God Bless.

    • Anne-Marie says:

      I absolutely love our family unit – and the family time we spend is absolutely my most fun, most rewarding and also the most hard work and most taxing of my week! =) I am so blessed to have a job that I love, that absolutely thrills me, and keeps me extremely challenged while helping others. If it wasn’t so rewarding on all those levels, the days without my little guy would drag, drag on =) Thanks for your positive experience sharing. I love this moment right now – but I am curious what sort of little man Jamisen is going to grow into.

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