Our 1st Year Together.. Happy Birthday Baby!

It was a year ago today that our little legs made an appearance, we never found out whether we were team pink or blue and if I’m honest we presumed it would be another little boy to add to our growing football team.

So when she did arrive my husband was in shock!, I think it was the fear of having a little girl growing into a teenager and beyond made him loose a little bit more hair, but we couldn’t be happier if not a little less financially out of pocket…

I knew I needed to change my worklife balance before we got pregnant. My boys are happy, healthy and live wires but I felt I missed out on so much, plus the thought of juggling another baby in the mix with childcare, school runs, clubs filled me with dread so I decided to take action!  The rest is history and I’m in full life work balance! If you haven’t had chance to take a look at my home based business its worth having a read as you never know if it could be as perfect for you as it has been for us.

Her first birthday was filled with love and kisses from start to end!  Her handmade tutu outfit was ready and waiting (every princess needs one!) she woke up to presents balloons and the most amazing upsy daisy cake, which is her favourite TV programme at the minute.

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A special birthday breakfast, me and her auntie needed a little birthday treat too, to celebrate so opted for a morning ‘afternoon tea’ version.Not sure that makes sense, take a look at the pics!  Little legs had a yummy teacake and lots of attention from nearby tables!!

It was then a trip to the xmas markets to purchase some treats for her, a sneaky mulled wine for mummy and daddy before purchasing her first new shoes! We rounded off her day with a party tea at Frankie & Bennys with her cousins and a big Birthday Sing Song!

A special thank you to babetique who hand made her birthday tutu outfit, it took me ages to decide which one to go with and you would have thought the parcel was filled with diamonds when it arrived, I fell in love with it the minute I opened it.  You will find her on instagram and will be blown away by how talented she is!

To huge thank you to Naomi to for the amazing upsy daisy cake which tasted as good as it looked! It was a wow when we opened it and had a few visits from diners in Frankie & Bennys coming to have a look!   I really don’t want to give any of the cake away!

Last but not least thank you to everyone who took the time out to make her day special with a happy birthday xx

Melanie

Career mummy doing it differently

What Would An Extra £300 A Month Mean To You?

I will be very honest… I never started my own little part time business for £200 to £400.   I was already earning an income I was happy with in a career I loved. My motivation for getting started was the potential to get time back in the future with my children, lifestyle choices and a way to cover maternity leave. The lack of time or not knowing if I could do it didn’t stop me as I was intrigued with the business presentation I had seen.  My eyes were always on the bigger incomes that I had been shown, so at the time I never understood the power of what an extra £300 can do.

It’s been over the last 2 years of building my business alongside amazing like-minded people (mainly women) that I realise the power of what an extra £300 per month can do for us.   £300 x 12 months is like going into work and getting an increase of £3600 which doesn’t happen often enough (if ever!).

One of the first things I do when I help get a ‘new friends’ business started is explore what an extra income can do for them.  Most of the time it can be too difficult to think about the really big numbers but everyone is able to visualise what they would do with an extra £300 and it blows me away every time when I hear the positive impact this amount of money has. It ranges from paying bills, purchasing a car to luxury treats.  No answer is ever exactly the same and thats the beauty of it.  Showing them how by finding  5 to 10 hours a week they can develop that income is a fab feeling and an even better feeling when they smash it!

So my question to you is What would you do with an extra income of £300? How would it change your life? What would you spend it on? There is absolutely nothing stopping you getting it, theres only your excuses, fears and worries that will.

  because-i-want-to-stop-looking-at-price-tags

Has it got you thinking?..   What are you prepared to do to make it happen. You may already have a dream that you haven’t turned into a reality, if thats the case then don’t waste time thinking about it, just go for it.    Or maybe you have a dream of creating a bigger income or changing your lifestyle but have no idea how to do that. If this is you there is something out there for you, you just have to look. Thats exactly where I was and it has all worked out perfectly. It doesn’t matter whether its £300, £3000 or £30,000 per month you want. As long as you are prepared to do what it takes, its yours.   Don’t settle, live the life you want.

I would love to hear what it would do for you? x

Melanie

Career Mummy Doing It Differently x

 

 

Its The Little Touches..

This weekend my dad hit the young age of 65.  To be fair he wasn’t that thrilled at the number but what he was thrilled at was being treated to a weekend away with the whole family.      Myself and my sister had looked at quite a few different hotels around the country but we didn’t want a big commute as it was just for a weekend stay. We know our dad loves being near the sea so that was at the top of the list and my business has now allowed me to be able to treat my family and give something back which meant the cost wasn’t at the top of the list.

Our final decision was a stay at The Grand Hotel in St Annes Lytham and it turned out to be the best decision.  My parents were over the moon with their surprise all paid for weekend away and blown away by their room which overlooked the seafront, had a free-standing bath in the middle of the room, a swivel TV, although apparently the best bit was the Molten Brown bathroom essentials!

The Grand has an annex across the road which is where we stayed in a family room.  The size was perfect for the 5 of us, with plenty of space for the cot, the pram, sofa beds and luggage that looked like we were immigrating! Not to mention the bathroom topped off with luxury bath salts for a little soak!

The staff couldn’t do enough for you, whether it was grabbing a high chair, serving breakfast, helping with doors. They were professional, friendly and good at their jobs, which for me makes any hotel.

The kids absolutely loved the pool with their dad, whilst I enjoyed the jacuzzi and sauna (I was on holiday!)  We hired a private room for our evening meal on the saturday as a surprise party for 15.  We had the set menu at £40 a head which was worth every penny.  The food was amazing!

If you are looking for something a little bit special, family friendly and enjoy the little touches I would highly recommend this hotel.  We’ll be going back for sure

Melanie

Career mummy doing it differently

When My Self Doubt Kicks In..

Do you ever dream big dreams, think about exciting things you would like to achieve, maybe you dream about places you would like to travel?  Then you sleep on it and the next day it doesn’t feel like the best idea because little Miss Doubt is having an ongoing, non stop conversation with Miss I can do anything and telling her it just won’t work for you, you can’t do it, you’ll look silly…   I may be sounding a little crazy right now but I’m sure I’m not the only female who has a little Miss Doubt who is a pain in the bum!? (AKA Miss I can’t do it)

Or maybe you are on fire with your ideas and exciting future plans so you put yourself out there and share your excitment with a friend or family who with one short, swift comment swats it away like you are a crazy lady..

Either scenario isn’t good and it seems all to common which is so so sad in my book because it means lots of amazing women who have so much more to give, so much more potential just don’t step over that comfort zone line.

I’m here to tell you that you are not alone, as dealing with self doubt since having my own business has been something I have had to work on.

I had little Miss Doubt chattering away telling me my new business venture was to good to be true, that I wouldn’t be able to do it.  Little Miss Doubt has spent the last 2 years chattering away but every time I have pushed myself to take the leap of faith which has massively paid off.  I can confidently say that because I have achieved every goal I set.

Don’t be fooled into thinking self doubt goes away, it doesn’t!  I have recently had doubts over whether I can take my business to the next level, which is silly when you think about it, because I have have done it once so why not again.. why limit myself?

doubt-kills-more-dreams

It’s not easy to overcome self doubt so I thought I would share my 4 quick practical tips that I implement.

1) Write a list under the heading ‘What is the worst that can happen’

2) Review your list if there are any biggies in there like’ I couldn’t pay my mortgage if it didn’t go to plan’, highlight and write solutions under it. You may need a friend to help you as sometimes the obvious solution doesn’t stare you in the face

3) Write a list under the heading ‘What I will Gain’ of whatever it is you are wanting to achieve. It could be a business venture, new job, joining a new group or a gym or speaking in public.

4)  Review your lists and make a decision.  It doesn’t mean you have to rush a decision but by the same rule thinking about it for weeks, months, years on end is a waste of your brain space.  The way I would look at it, is if it isn’t a huge financial risk then its a no brainer.

For me you never fail you learn, when we learn we develop and for me knowing I’ve give it my best shot is a million times better than wondering what if and living with regrets of not trying

Wishing you every success, go for it!

Melanie x

Career mummy doing it differently

PS Look out for my next installment on self development books that have enhanced my development.

 

 

 

Baby M’s Food Reviews!

The beauty of working from home is the flexibility with your time, the downside (if there is one) is the opportunity to eat out most days as I’m networking and supporting my team of fabulous women and mummy’s!   I don’t need much excuse to enjoy food so it’s not like I am having my arm twisted up my back.  It seems our little legs is just as fond of getting out and about too.  I thought it would quite nice to share some reviews of places my Baby M has enjoyed over the last week or so..

@Tampopo’s is perfect for a light lunch, I have a love of pan asian food so it is one of my favourite choices.  Baby M is 10 months so the spice factor is a bit of an issue, although it seemed more for me than her!  She had rice and chicken noodles, whilst enjoying a pork gyoza.  The staffs were so accommodating, the lady who served us even managed to get a cuddle followed by lots of smiles.  The food came at a good pace as there is never much of a window when eating with baby’s and small children. All in all I would take my little family again.

 

The next stop last week was yo sushi  It was slap bang in the middle of lunch time in the Trafford Centre so maybe not the best time to go, but again the staff were amazing. Due to how busy it was a booth wasn’t available so we sat at the conveyor belt, much to the delight of baby M in her high chair watching the food plates pass by!  This time she sampled some teriyiki Salmon which was super tasty with noodles!

 

nandos

We were a little noodled out so we decided to have a change and opt for Nando’s.  This time the service was super slow, my mummy friend and her little one had eaten their food before mine and baby M’s had arrived which meant she wasn’t a happy bunny!  The food is always tasty we opted for a chicken wrap to share with a side of mash potato and some corn (for me).  I wouldn’t go back to the Bolton branch but will happily be visiting Nando’s again else where.

 

 

 

 

I would love to hear where you enjoy taking your little ones to eat..

Melanie x

Career Mummy Doing It Differently

Dear Boss, I Quit, Yours Sincerely..

When I say I’ve sacked my boss I mean that in the nicest possible way!  If you know me you’ll know that I love my career in fashion buying and have loved my time with my ‘last’ employer Boohoo.  6 years ago when I joined the Boohoo family  it was exactly that a family run business and is now a multi million pound player in the retail world and I’m proud to have been part of that.  What I learnt very quickly was the power of entrepenureal spirit, trying new ideas even when it’s not industry standard and running at a pace I can guarantee most people haven’t experienced! 24 hour fast fashion – we lived up to that name!

THE TIME IS RIGHT FOR ME TO PUT INTO PRACTISE WHAT I HAVE LEARNT OVER MY CAREER. IT IS TIME TO CREATE MY INCOME THAT I DECIDE, IT IS TIME TO CHOOSE WHAT I DO WITH MY TIME, THERE ARE NO LIMITS. HOW EXCITING IS THAT!

the-new-chapterIt feels slightly surreal that I’ve closed one chapter of my life and started a new one all because 2 years ago I took a leap of faith and started my own little part-time business around my busy work and family life.  Why did I start it when i was already so busy? Because when I took the time to take a look at the business presentation (I was soo sceptical to start with!)  I realised that the little part time business I had in my hands was so much bigger if I was prepared to work for it, in the small pockets of time I had.   That one hour has changed my life forever!! No pun intended..  My 10 year plan turned into a 2 year one!

My role was the Head of Buying which for me and many others a dream role BUT 19 years into my career, my family life wasn’t fitting in, I wasn’t able to do the school runs, with most nights just catching bed times, I felt guilty that I didn’t get to be there for them yet I’m not the type of person that could be a stay at home mummy neither (there is absolutely nothing wrong with being a SAHM if that suits you)  So you can see my dilemma, I was ready for a change without knowing it but no idea how to make a change and an income drop wasn’t an option neither!

That was until Forever found me.  I’m not a spring chick yet not ‘old’ but making a change new-chapteras drastic as leaving a secure successful well paid career sounds a little crazy yet I don’t feel crazy.   For me I now have the freedom to choose what I do with every single hour of my day, I have no business overheads as the business model is team marketing and I’m partnered with a stable, global company.  I am my own boss yet never feel like I’m on my own as we work as a team of business owners for support and fun too! It’s an amazing, rewarding feeling to now help other mums like myself, we all have totally varied backgrounds but one thing in common.. Making the most of our lives and being happy.. everyone’s goals really.

Is anyone else super-duper, crazily excited about their future? If not make a change for you, life is too short.

Melanie x

Career mummy doing it differently

A Spa Day Just For Me.. Should I Be Feeling Guilty?

I don’t know whether it’s just me (I have a sneaking suspicion it’s not) that has a guilty feeling whenever I do anything for myself. This week I decided I was going to spend some quality me time enjoying a spa day. I work hard and I work hard because I thrive on achieving my goals but one thing that I have realized is that I’m rubbish at having fun for me! I’m not sure when I started being rubbish at it, I’m sure an educated guess would tell me over the last 7 or 8 years as my family has grown but I can’t pinpoint the exact moment I decided to stop doing the things I love.

Running around a park is fun, watching my 3 enjoying the sandpit is fun, days out at the zoo, theme parks and play centres are all fun because my munchkins are enjoying it but it is not the same as completely relaxing in luxury being pampered without a care in the world!

me-and-marie-spa

This Tuesday was the start of the new me, my new years resolution starting early – or late depending on how you look at it.  We booked ourselves into the The Mere Spa Resort and enjoyed every single second.  We arrived at 10.30 after we had dropped the kiddies off at school and Baby at my sisters, the reception staff were friendly whilst being professional, we were handed our gowns, slippers and towel then shown to the changing area with our time-table of treatments.  I could have done a little skip!

 

We headed straight for the pool area, and dived into very inviting pool (not literally, at this point I didn’t want to get my hair wet), we then moved onto the jacuzzi with shaped beds just to make it that little bit more like heaven, at this point we were getting thirsty so I call from the mere-spapoolside beds to the bar area meant that 5 minutes later we had our drinks whilst relaxing on the heated beds.

 

 

 

Our first treatment was the Rasul thermal mud heaven and it did cross my mind that the thermal-mudname fitted perfectly, next stop was a glorious facial finished with an orange sorbet and glass of water in the relaxation room.   Now at this point I didn’t think it could get any better until our 2 course lunch arrived! I’m a real foodie and all that relaxation work had left me with a huge appetite so the salmon and pasta (it sounded fancier than that) followed by a lemon cake and sorbet was amazing!

I can’t tell you what it did for me, just those few hours gave me a huge spring in my step, my skin was glowing and it was worth every penny. It also made me realise the lifestyle this business can give me and the mums and ladies I work alongside. In my corporate role this wouldn’t have been possible, holidays were too precious to splash out on a ‘me’ day.

Get booking in your diaries ‘me’ time mummy’s, lets not forget our fun, it’s so worth it!

Share any spa recommendations as the once a month me time has officially begun..

Melanie x

 

One Phone Call Changed Everything

It’s been a crazy 2 years that have flown by and it wasn’t until last night whilst having a glass of wine and thinking about ‘stuff’ that I realised that it was 1 phone call 2 years ago that got the ball rolling in the direction I had been looking for, for some time.

Jordana was one of the first people I spoke to about the opportunity I’d come across, I knew she was in a similar position to me as a working career mummy and I also knew that she was currently on maternity leave.  Our paths had crossed previously when we worked for the same company and it had been a while since we had been in touch but you know when someone just pops into your mind? I knew in that instance that I had to tell her about what I had discovered.

At that time I knew nothing about the Team Marketing Industry I am now part of, if I’m honest I didn’t even know it was an industry, all I knew is I had watched a presentation and chatted to an ex detective who said if you have a strong work ethic (tick) was self motivated (tick) and willing to treat it like a business (I was willing) anything was possible.   I was excited, excited at the prospect of making future changes and at the same time so so sceptical.(that’s for a future post)

Jordana saw what I did and a week later her journey as a part-time business owner began. Fast forward 2 years and she has just watched her eldest daughter start private education in a school that she had set as a goal, we have partied in Johannesburg together on  free holiday and I have watched her pick up her dream car.  Best of all very recently she has been able to quit her career to be a mumpreneur so she could get the time back that I had achieved with her girls.  It’s a very special feeling when you know you have helped someone to achieve their own goals.  We work our businesses closely because that is what I do now, I’m able to share my knowledge and show other business owners how to achieve their own goals.

jordana collage

Tonight I’m feeling proud as well as extremely grateful, its funny how people come into our lives when you are least expecting it, I’m grateful for all the amazing friends and family I’m surrounded by , all on their own life journeys too. I’m proud of what I have achieved (it’s not always been easy) and extremely grateful – for everything.

What are you grateful for?

Melanie xx

 

 

What Inspires You?

We have had the most incredible weekend, with friends and fellow business owners. That one simple sentence for me shows how much everything has changed.  Why? Well I have ‘grown up’ in my career keeping friends and business separate. nobody advised me to do it that way, it’s just how I felt comfortable. Believe it or not I am a fairly private person (or was!) but slowly over the last 2 years a positive change has taken place.  Now in a traditional business I would imagine it could be a lonely place swapping the buzz of an office for your own space, with my business it’s different because it’s about people, so whilst I build my business, with my goals, in the time I choose, from the working space I want to, I’m never on my own.

 I think the statement ‘friends in business’ sums it up perfectly!

I’m not the type of person that is inspired easily, if you would have asked me 3 years ago  ‘who/what inspires you?’ I think I would have struggled to answer.. yes my parents, it goes without saying as I was lucky enough to have an amazing childhood but beyond that I’m not sure what I would have said, maybe a well-known figure, a sports person, those facing adversity..  All worthy of the title but I just don’t know what I would have said. Now Its hard to not reel off names without thinking!

success weekendFast forward to monday evening, sat with my cup of tea in hand after returning from the most amazing weekend of training, fun, food, drinks, belly laughs and a photo shoot (don’t ask!) I also came away knowing what inspires me. I watched 2 children take to a stage in front of 3000 people and present! Both with their own stories, both speaking beautifully, both with a can do attitude.

Both sets of parents have shown them that anything is possible, not by telling them, by physically, actively showing them. So for me it was there and then that I realised that I love my self-development journey because I’m showing my children that confidence, belief, an amazing work ethic and a can do attitude is something to be valued and be inspired by, they get to watch me from home improve ‘me’ which couldn’t happen in my previous role because I wasn’t at home enough.   Seeing both children off stage they were both polite and well-mannered too, you really can have it all.

My boys absolutely loved watching the video I recorded and now have plans to follow in their footsteps now how inspiring is that! Children showing Children..

Melanie x

ellis speak

If you haven’t heard of Richard McCann, look him up. Just a boy.. If he can we certainly can!  #icanlive #RichardMcCann #careermummydoingitdifferently #showdonttell #eaglesteam #successday

 

 

 

My First School Holidays..

The 4 of us are entering into the last week of our school holidays and its been fun. Yep you heard me right, fun! Don’t get me wrong the daily bickering, tantrums, extra washing and the small fortune that has gone from the money tree they think we have in the back garden haven’t been the highlights but all of that is un important compared to the time I have been able to spend with them and vice versa.

You see I have always been a working mummy, in a very demanding role so whilst mums would post about the dreaded 6 weeks holidays, they never impacted me other than always knowing it was a time I was missing out.   I vividly remember one particular summer holidays when my mum had arranged to take the boys on a day out with the other school mums. The morning came and I dropped them all off at the coach pick up and the feeling of driving off in the opposite direction killed me. I realised I didn’t know most of the mums on the trip because I wasn’t there at the school gates more than once a week, so I spent the entire car journey thinking of how I could do something I love, to earn the pennies and not miss out with the boys.

It was a few years later before I figured out what that ‘something’ was that I could do.

days out

Fast forward and this year, there has been no missing out, we have enjoyed a 10 day holiday, The Peppa Pig world theme park which I fell in love with! picnics in the parks, trampolining, garden games, Cinema, lazy TV days, museum visits, Pub lunches, we have even travelled to local cities to explore plus a whole host of other activities.    I am slightly exhausted if I’m honest, so to help me get over the hectic schedule I’m currently look up spa days for when they return to school. (We all need a little treat now and then)

I haven’t had to worry about the cost because I’ve still been able to build my business in the times I had allocated which was usually when they were all in bed which means no stress and many years of school holiday enjoyment!

Heres to many more years of school holiday fun and I’m told I won’t be so enthusiastic once the novelty wears off!  Watch this space..

Mummy and Munchkins x

I’ve listed our 2 favourite places to visit for family fun!

Paultons Theme Park   (home of peppa pig world) https://paultonspark.co.uk/

The Chesire Ice cream Farm http://www.theicecreamfarm.co.uk/