Happy Monday, Mommy Chicks! I can’t believe that it’s already May and that we have started a new month; the month that hold’s Mother’s Day and our soirée!
For this month’s Mommy Chick, I have chosen the incredibly hilarious, tremendously kind, most southern mama I know; Ashlie from Southern Made Blog. Her infectious spirit and abundant love for others make her an amazing woman, an outstanding mother and the perfect choice as our featured Mommy Chick.
Please welcome our May Mommy Chick, Ashlie!
Hi, Ashlie! To start, what motivated you and helped you decide to start blogging?
I’ve lived in a lot of different places and since getting married, we’ve never lived in the same state as a family. I’ve wanted to start a blog for a long time and once we started having babies, it seemed like the perfect time to do it. A blog was a great opportunity to share our everyday life with our friends and family. I also wanted a creative outlet for other things that I loved. Being a Mississippi girl, I knew everything that I created would be inspired from my southern roots, so naming it Southern Made Blog just made sense.
What kind of work projects excite you?
I’ve just recently branched out into fashion and I’m loving it! My goal behind showing my style was to inspire moms to do something for themselves, whether that’s putting on your favorite shoes or getting dolled up for date night. We owe it to ourselves to still make time to feel beautiful!
I love sharing recipes, too! We have a ton of family meals that I want to put on my blog in the months to come! I’ll also be sharing essential oils DIY recipes for skincare and more! All of that gets me really excited!
That’s awesome! It sounds like you really cover a little something for everyone on your blog.
When someone visits your site, what do you want people to take away from your blog?
My blog has really turned into so much more than I could have anticipated. I still love that I can share our life with those that love us, but now that I have so many new readers, my heart is to share my experiences as a young mom. Motherhood is hard, so if I can encourage, inspire, or uplift someone by my words, that makes me so happy.
I love that!
What would you say has been your greatest achievement so far as a mom and as a blogger?
My sons are 3 years-old and 9 months, so we’re constantly trying to teach them manners. I’d have to say seeing Harper become a little gentleman. We want to raise our boys so that they know to be respectful, kind, and loving. Now that he’s getting older, I’m seeing the benefit of sticking to my guns as I’m now hearing the “yes, ma’am” and “no, thank you” comments, as I’m watching him be compassionate to other children, and how he loves his brother. Each stage is so different and can be challenging, but nothing compares to the reward of seeing these sweet boys of mine apply what we’ve been teaching them.
As for blogging, I’ve been humbled to find more and more people are reading and enjoying what they see on my blog and throughout my social media. It’s so encouraging to hear that ladies identify with my words and find them uplifting. Having a platform that gives me a voice to share my heart as a mama and talk about Jesus brings me such joy!
What is your favorite part of the day?
The mornings where we have no place to be and can slowly move into our day. The weather has been so beautiful and pleasant here in Nashville that we have been outside every day. We spend the mornings on our front porch having breakfast while we rock in our rocking chairs. Harper plays with his cars and draws with chalk on the sidewalk while Rohen snuggles with me as I drink my coffee. It’s pretty much heaven and I try to soak it all in.
It sure does sounds like heaven. 🙂
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 stay-at-home working mom? We know that having a blog can be a full time job!
Oh man, finding balance is hard and blogging could absolutely be a full time job. Since we don’t have family in town, it’s not often I have help with the boys during the day unless I have a sitter. So it’s been hard for me to balance it all. I’ve learned I have to prioritize and plan. My husband and boys are my priority and they come first, anything blog related comes later. I usually carve out a day to do laundry and really clean the house, then we just tidy up each day after. It’s not always clean though and there are loads of laundry that don’t get folded if we have busy weeks, but I take a day at a time and do what I can.
I think you have to be content where you are. For me, I have it all because I’m blessed with my precious family who is healthy and thriving, we have a roof over our head, food on our table, and an unbreakable bond of love. When it comes to having a work-life balance, I knock out what I can each day and that’s all I can do. If I’m keeping my priorities in line and don’t overcommit myself, it’s easier to balance it all.
Love this! Prioritization, recognizing the bigger picture, and teaching ourselves to say “no” are major skills that we all need to work on; myself included.
It can be difficult to find time to take care of yourself and your littles. How do you carve out mommy time?
I make a point to do something for myself each day, whether that’s making a late night Target run alone, a hot bath, or going to get a pedicure on the weekend. I’m a better wife and mother because of this.
What’s your secret to having happy kiddos and a happy marriage?
Jesus, first and foremost. He’s the reason I have joy in my life and why I try to be loving and kind in all that I do. Marriage and having children can have its moments of stress and frustration, but they are also incredibly rewarding and fulfilling. I find when I’m actively seeking Christ and praying for his wisdom, he gives it to me in those moments and helps me have patience. I definitely think acting in love and showing patience are two huge things that keep my boys happy and feeling loved.
Another thing that has been extremely helpful is great communication. My husband and I dated for 6 years before we got married, 3 of which were long distance. We learned how to communicate because that’s all we had. Communication is so important in marriage, parenting, and life in general. We’ve found that regardless of what’s going on, if we can talk through things, we will always have a better outcome. The same goes for our boys. We make a conscious effort to talk to them, especially now that Harper is getting older. He responds so much better to me getting on his level and talking through whatever situation we’re facing.
Moms are short on time in the morning; do you have any quick beauty tricks to share with our Mommy Chicks?
Isn’t that the truth?! I think every mom could agree that we need more hours in a day. One thing I use that really helps me save time in the mornings is eyelash extensions. Most days I’m in workout clothes, a top knot, and no makeup. Since getting eyelash extensions, I feel like I’m wearing makeup even when I’m not! It’s amazing!
I’ve never gotten my eyelashes done and now you’ve just sold me. I must give this a try!
Now that you have moved to a new city, how have you been able to make new mommy friends?
I immediately got plugged into local mom Facebook groups, we found a church that we loved, and I also connected with moms through Instagram. We’ve met a ton of young families in our neighborhood since the weather has warmed up and we’re all getting outside. The community of moms here is amazing and I’m so thankful for that!
What’s the greatest lesson or lessons that motherhood has taught you?
If you were to describe what it’s like being a boy mom, what would you say?
It’s honestly the best thing ever! I always wanted a girl but I love being a boy mama. If the Lord only ever blesses us with little boys, I’m completely overjoyed and content. Boys love their mamas and love them hard. Mine are no exception. They’ve stolen my heart and made it grow in a way I could never put into words! I’m a lucky mama to have two little dudes. Watching their relationship grow as brothers is just the sweetest thing. I love seeing them play together and love on each other. I relish in the little cars, dump trucks, and dinosaurs that are sprinkled throughout my house. It reminds me of the joy and excitement they bring to our lives.
I see that you are a lover of oils! What are the oils that you use on a daily basis and what do you use them for?
Oh, yes! I love my Young Living Essential Oils! Since having babies, I began to look at the things we were using every day and realizing how many chemicals our bodies come in contact with. I started to take a more natural approach when it came to our health and home. I use so many of my oils daily. My every day must-haves right now are Thieves, Peppermint, Stress Away, Melrose, Lavender, Joy, En-R-Gee, Frankincense, Lemon, Progessence Plus, Digize…I am seriously obsessed. I use them on my little boys, my husband and myself, around the house for cleaning, for my skin, medicinal purposes, you name it…I’ve got an oil for it!
I absolutely love educating on oils and empowering other women and moms with the education on how to easily implement using the oils in their day to day routine. If you’d like to know more, email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I’d be happy to share a webinar that tells you about them and what to use them for.
As a seasoned mama yourself, what’s a piece of advice that you would give expecting moms and/or new mothers?
Give yourself grace…lots and lots of grace. Motherhood is hard! You won’t be able to get to everything each day. Don’t stress over the little things and remember tomorrow is another day. If you’re doing the best you can, then that’s enough. Your babies won’t notice if the laundry gets done or the floor goes without being mopped. They will remember being loved and nurtured.
I feel like every mother needs to hear these words. I couldn’t agree more.
Do you have a lifesaving beauty product? Piece of baby gear?
Dry Shampoo is my best friend! Couldn’t live without it!
Yes, girl!! Same here!
For baby gear, I’m a baby wearing mama, so I always have a wrap or something to put Rohen in! I’m also never without is a great blanket! We love being outside whether that involves playing, having a picnic, or finding shapes in the clouds. Having a weatherproof blanket is a must for us!
What do you do to de-stress at the end of a long day?
Have a glass of wine, take a hot bath, and talk to my husband.
Who is your mommy inspiration?
Definitely my mom and mother-in-law. I’m so blessed to have them both. They are great examples of what it means to be a mother.
What did you learn from your mother and parenthood, and what do you hope to pass on to your two sons?
To love no matter what and to seek out Jesus. Regardless of what trials we faced as mother and daughter, she always loved me. She lifted me up in prayer and sought out His wisdom in parenting. I hope my boys see Jesus in me by the way I love them, raise them, and discipline them. I want them to show that same love and kindness to everyone.
And you are doing it well, Ashlie — incredibly inspiring!
Ashlie, thank you so much for being our featured Mommy Chick for May. I so appreciate you sharing your story with us and for giving us some amazing insight on how you’re able to do it all. xoxo
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!