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Another month has flown by, and we are so excited to present to you our February Mommy Chick, Jamie Chandlee! Jamie is a busy mom on-the-go with all of her endeavors. She is the CEO of Rank & Style, a wife and mother of two, as well as an active supporter of several deserving Austin philanthropies. Anyone who knows Jamie as a friend or colleague would say she is a woman who does it all. Succeeding in the business world is just second to Jamie’s victories of beating cancer and becoming a dedicated and loving mother to her two children, Emerson and Maxwell. We are honored to have her as our February Mommy Chick and to share her story. Please welcome Jamie!
N: Hi, Jamie! For our readers at Baby Chick who don’t know about Rank & Style or you just yet, how would you describe yourself in three words? What would they be and why?
- Strong – Strong mama and proud to say one of my greatest victories is beating cancer!
- Focused – I try to use my time extremely well to make sure I get everything done each and every day
- Compassionate – Helping deserving Austin philanthropies is very near and dear to my heart. My husband and I created the Chandlee Family Foundation to continue to invest in the future of many local Austin charities.
N: What inspired you to take the leap and acquire Rank & Style?
J: I left an intense job at Facebook in 2013 when I was pregnant with my daughter, Emerson. I really struggled with my identity and was in a total rut. Being a mom is very fulfilling, but I knew that I needed another outlet. I started working on the Rank & Style acquisition about a year ago, and I haven’t looked back since. I am so fulfilled in all aspects of my life, which allows me to be a better mom and cherish my time with my family even more.
N: What’s the #1 thing that you want people to take away after visiting Rank & Style’s site?
J: I want women to leave the site knowing that they have found a trusted, unbiased opinion on beauty and fashion products. Busy women and moms don’t have the time to scour the internet for the right product with high customer ratings, so Rank & Style really solves that problem.
N: What is it about fashion and beauty that ignites your passion?
J: Fashion and beauty have always provided me an opportunity to be creative in how I show my personality and what inspires me. Both fashion and beauty are industries that are constantly changing and evolving; you can’t possibly know everything! Being able to center my career around this creative inspiration brings me such joy.
N: What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
J: I love seeing our team work together to challenge and inspire one another on a daily basis. We sometimes have to step outside our comfort zones as we continue to scale the business. It’s been so rewarding to see us continue to grow while watching our new ideas come to life.
N: What items does every mother need in her closet?
J: Every mother needs the best basics in her closet. Since we have little spare time during the day, we need good transitional pieces that can be worn year round, but styled differently each time. A good pair of skinny jeans, a basic tee, and a rockin’ pair of heels are essential. I love wearing jeans, a tee, and sneakers to drop the kids off in the morning and then throwing on heels for a meeting at work that day. Easy as can be!
N: What are your life saving beauty products? And baby/kid products?
- La Mer Creme de la Mer – definitely worth the investment!
- Batiste Dry Shampoo – always in a hurry so this is my go-to
- Cle De Pau Radiant Cream Foundation – swear by this stuff
- Oribe Perfume – good for a day of errands or a big night out. Its amazing!!
- Olaplex Hiar Mask – have tried many and this one takes the cake!!
- Honest company bundles – love that they have a service that delivers diapers and product straight to my doorstep. I don’t have to think about it and it’s safe and healthy for my kids, too!
- Happy Baby Pouches – great for on-the-go feeding
N: If we were to take a peek into your purse—or your diaper bag—what would we find?
- Phone charger – constantly using my phone for calls, adding things to my calendar, and sending emails. Have to keep it charged, always!
- Aquaphor – for the dry winter months
- Karen Walker sunglasses – some of my favs
- Laptop – almost always have my laptop with me for last minute work that needs to get done
- Kind bars – great for on-the-go snacking in between meetings
- Bone broth!! – although I don’t keep this in my purse, I am totally obsessed and have it Every. Single. Day. I can’t live without it.
N: What do you want other women to know when it comes to starting a business and pursuing your dreams? What would you have liked to have been told?
J: Focus on what is most important to you first. I carve out specific time each day to focus on three different areas: Work, Charity (I am chairing the EASB gala in April), Family. It’s a constant give and take and I certainly don’t have the perfect balance, but it’s something I work on every single day. I think it’s by far the biggest challenge of being a working mom! The struggle for more time and balance will always be there, but when I am specific with my intensions for each day, then it’s another step forward.
N: What’s the greatest lesson (or lessons) that motherhood has taught you?
J: Motherhood really teaches you not only about what unconditional love is, but what it looks like in action. I never knew I had the capacity to love so much and so deeply. Having kids has taught me to be more selfless, not just with my kids but with the people that surround me.
N: What are your favorite things about being a mother?
J: Being a mom comes with a thousand rewarding things! I think one of the best parts is the adventure that comes along with it. Things are constantly changing and the next chapter is always just as exciting. Life gets better and better as I watch them grow and become who they are meant to be.
N: As a mother of two, what’s a piece of advice that you wish you would have known and would like to share with expecting moms and/or brand new mothers?
J: Mom guilt is a real thing! Am I doing enough? Is it OK that I couldn’t be the one to drop my kids off at school today? Is it bad that we are taking a vacation without our kids? Ultimately, I have found that I am a better mother when I am happy and also find time to do the things I love! And of course making sure I have one-on-one time with my husband!
N: What are your secrets to being a happy mommy and wife?
J: Ultimately, we are better parents when we are happy with ourselves! So my husband and I have learned to make sure we focus on each other and our needs, and not just our kids. They are happy when we are happy.
N: What are your greatest hopes for our children’s’ future—the next generation?
J: I hope for children to learn, appreciate, and value compassion and diversity in this world. We are all different and that’s what makes us special . . . I can only hope that my kids will pursue their passions, but also have compassion for others as they continue to grow! They are the future, so it’s important we instill these core values in their life today.
N: What are your greatest hopes for women and mothers everywhere?
J: We are all in this together; there’s no time for judging! I think it’s easy to compare and also judge decisions of other parents. At the end of the day, we are all doing the very best we can and need to continue to support each other regardless of our differences.
We are so honored to have Jamie as our February Mommy Chick. Thank you, Jamie, for sharing your story with us.
Which mamas are you inspired by? Share with us who your mommy inspiration is and they just might be our next featured Mommy Chick of the Month! ?