It’s a new week and a new month so we wanted to start something new here at Baby Chick. We feel like everyday we are surrounded by beautiful, incredible women and mothers. It’s inspiring to watch them raise their babies, take care of their families, follow their dreams, and encourage others. Seeing all of this beauty made me want to share these fabulous mothers’ stories with all of you. So I’ve decided that each month we will feature a chic(k) mama that I am inspired by; a mother that is living her chic(k) life. Mothers really do have the toughest job / best job in the world and we want to celebrate that journey, share your triumphs, and let every hard working mother know that you’re amazing and you’re a great mom.
For our very first Mommy Chick Monday, we wanted to feature the lovely Abigail Ochse from The Chic Mamas. I have personally been following her for a while and have loved watching / reading her journey as a mother and we thought you would too! May I introduce you to Abby, our March Mommy Chick. 🙂
Abby, how did you get started blogging, and how did you turn this into your career?
I originally started blogging after I had Willow, and was on maternity leave. I was approached by a food delivery service to blog about their meals from a new mother’s perspective. I had always had a passion for writing, and this gave me something to do in between changing diapers and nap times. I found that I got a good response from my weekly posts. So I thought why not share my journey of motherhood with the world through my own blog. Voila, The Chic Mamas was born.
It definitely took time to turn this passion into a career in which I now benefit financially. I did a lot of research, and built my first website myself. It takes a lot of time and effort behind the scenes in regards to networking and collaborations, and at times I definitely found myself questioning my sanity! Yet I stuck with it! My blog is only a little under two years old, but I have always treated it like a business. I took the time to work on content that I thought other women, mothers, and parents would enjoy, I calendar out posts and shoots, and strategize on my brand all the time! My advice is to understand it takes a lot of time to build a career out of blogging, it is a saturated market, but where there is a will there is a way!
Such great advice! Now that you have been blogging for almost two years, what kind of work projects excite you the most?
Work projects that excite me usually contain some kind of parenting tips, like my latest post, 5 Tips for Traveling with a Toddler! I find that when you give or share ideas on parenting, you gain a lot of helpful knowledge back! I love reading everyone’s comments and what they do for their own family. I really like projects or posts that create a common forum where people can leave information and ask questions.
Let’s be honest, I love anything to do with clothes, shoes, bags, makeup…the list goes on!
Yes I do! And speaking of that; I love your style! Where do you get your inspiration?
My style inspiration really comes from dressing for my body and what I feel comfortable in. Trends can come and go, but dressing to keep up with them doesn’t work for me. In the past at shoots when I didn’t feel comfortable in what I had on, you can really see my uneasiness coming through in the pictures. I would rather spend my night feeling comfortable in what I am wearing, than insecure because I have ridiculous crop top on (don’t get me wrong I love crop tops, just on other people).
If you had to put me in a category, I am a Boho girl all the way. You can find me with my hair down, in a loose floral maxi dress, spreading a flower child vibe any day of the week.
As women and mothers we often hear the phrases “having it all” and “work life balance.” How does this play out in your role as a working mom?
Having it all is such an individualized statement. For me having it all means working and being a mother. It is exhausting in the best way possible (like I am rocking a side pony tail by the end of the day, and probably have puke on my shirt exhausting!). Yet having my daughter made me want to be more successful to help provide for my family and to show her the value of a strong work ethic. We do what we have to do, there are nights that I stay up late working, or get up early to blog before Willow wakes up, and there are times where I put it all aside to have Mommy and Me time with her. It’s just what you do. Mothers are strong-willed, selfless and inspiring. I feel like we need to get away from the statement, “you can have it all”, and move more towards “you already do”. Sometimes I most definitely need a reminder to help keep a work and life balance. So whether you are a stay at home mom, or a working mom, take a look around. Are your kids happy? Are you happy? Then you, my friend, “do have it all”.
LOVE THAT!! Such inspiring words. I feel like every women needs to hear this.
So, Abby, we all know that it can be difficult to find time to take care of yourself and your littles. How do you carve out mommy time?
Oh, the Mommy guilt! Does that every actually go away?? I have to be honest. That is something that I struggle with daily. I will be headed to the gym and think, “Is this bad. Should I turn around?”. The reality is you need time for yourself just like everyone else does. Just because you are a Mom does not mean you are no longer yourself (ok, maybe a little more tired version of yourself). YOU are still in there and YOU still matter. When we take care of ourselves we are in turn a happier person, and that happiness translates into our everyday actions. So go to the gym, get your hair or nails done, find a hobby, and have that glass of wine. You deserve it.
Moms are short on time in the morning; do you have any quick beauty tricks to share with our Mommy Chicks?
I have gotten my morning routine down to about 5 -10 minutes in the beauty department. I’ve had a long time relationship with dry shampoo; it is my best friend and can keep your hair going strong for about 2-3 days. I use this Amika Perk Up Dry Shampoo. For makeup: a tinted moisturizer like this Laura Mercier Tinted Moisturizer with SPF 20, a Lip and Cheek Pencil (this saves on time), add some mascara and you are out the door!
Do you have a lifesaving beauty product? Piece of baby gear?
I love a good highlighter, like this Chosungah Raybeam Highlighter. I put it on my eyelids, cheekbones, and Cupid’s bow. It gives you that fresh glow instantly! I always consistently use L’Occitane Immortelle Precious Cleanser, I’m obsessed with it. It leaves your skin feeling silky and clean.
My favorite piece of baby gear was our Nuna Peppa Car Seat and Stroller. Some of the baby gear these days are like trying to put together a space ship, Ikea style with no directions. The Nuna car seat easily attached to the stroller and was extremely convenient. It was great to travel with and can easily collapse as well for stress-free storage in the back of the car.
Do you have any easy meals that save the day during a busy week?
Three Words: Crock Pot Meals. I never used a crock pot until I had a baby. I would always see my Mom use them growing up and now I totally get it. I throw ingredients in the pot at night, put that baby on slow cook, and come morning you have meals done for the day and your house smells delicious! I have done everything from beef stew, to chicken enchiladas, and baked vegetables. The possibilities are endless. The best part is you toss it in and go!
Yes!! Crock pot meals always save the day. We’ll have to check out some of your recipes. 🙂
What do you do to de-stress at the end of a long day?
A glass of wine (don’t judge me), chocolate, and bad, mindless reality TV.
Ummm…are we the same person? lol! I feel like a lot of mamas can relate.
What is the bedtime routine look like in your house?
The bedtime routine at our house usually goes as follows: Master negotiating on Willow’s part to continue to play, a 5-minute minimum conversation that it is bath time, a naked baby streaking through the halls, Willow finally gets in the bath, a 5-minute minimum conversation about why Willow has to get out of the bath tub, story time, usually some singing mixed in there some where, then finally she throws in the towel and goes to sleep. Then I lay there thinking how tired I am after all of that, but wouldn’t change it for the world.
Who is your mommy inspiration?
Mothers everywhere are inspirations. Of course mine would have to be my mother, well because she put up with my sister and I, and still loves us!
What did you learn from your mother about parenthood, and what do you hope to pass on to your daughter?
My mother really made being a mom look easy, and has many helpful tips. I remember calling her after I had Willow just to ask advice on so many things. Here are my favorites:
- “Never wake a sleeping baby.”
- “Don’t lose yourself when you become a mother, because after you raise your children there will be nothing left of you.”
- “It’s important to remain close to your husband or partner after your baby is born, because after all that is how your baby got here.”
- My personal favorite, “Creating a mudpie with your child is much more memorable than how many loads of laundry you did.” (We are from Kentucky!)
Your mother sounds amazing. These tips are so good!
Can you see why I have a total mommy crush on Abby? Such an incredible woman, mother, and mompreneur. Thank you, Abby, for sharing a little bit about you and your life and for being our Mommy Chick of the month!!
Which mamas are you inspired by? Share with us and they might be our next featured Mommy Chick of the Month!