Being a mom is the most rewarding yet challenging job I’ve ever had. While I always love being Mommy to Bear and Boone, there are moments when my patience is reeeeeally tested and I am a far cry from June Cleaver. My friends know I’m perpetually 15 minutes late everywhere I go, and chances are I’ve forgotten something important (like the diapers or my sanity) once I actually get there.
But despite the serious Mom Brain that I deal with on a daily basis, I’ve actually learned a few things along the way these past 6+ years. Motherhood isn’t all unicorns and rainbows, but the good outweighs the bad by a landslide. That doesn’t mean we can’t laugh about all the mishaps along the way (once we’re done crying over them)…
5 Things I’ve Learned Since Becoming a Mom:
1. Sleep is more valuable than gold. Everyone warns you before you have kids things like, “Rest while you can!” and “You’ll never get a good night’s sleep again!” and I have to admit, I did some eye-rolling at this pre-kids. While it’s not entirely true (Bear's always been a great sleeper so I was spoiled before Boone), there’s still significant amounts of truth to the fact that you sleep a lot less once you have kids. Even if your kids are great sleepers, you’re still so busy once you have kids and thus exhausted when your head hits the pillow. On the rare occasion that your child sleeps until 9am, it’s worth celebrating because Lord knows when you’ll get that much sleep again.
2. Payback is a you-know-what. It’s a joke in my family that I was always a “meddler”- I was into eeeeeeverything all the time. I stayed at my grandparents’ house quite a bit when I was little and my grandma says that I was surprisingly easy to watch because I’d just spend hours going through her drawers and closets looking at everything. Now I have Boonester, who meddles in anything he can get his hands on. No drawer, closet, or pantry is safe…and I know I’m just paying for my raising.
3. Time flies. Another saying you hear constantly prior to having kids, but another one that rings true. The days seem so slow sometimes, but you look back and wonder where the years went. I cannot believe that Bear is 6 1/2 years old. Just typing it out baffles me because in my mind, I gave birth to him tops 2 years ago. And Boone? He will be a year old in less than 2 weeks and I can’t even talk about it. It’s such a bittersweet feeling to watch them grow and feel so proud of the good humans they’re becoming, while also wishing they could stay little forever.
4. Silence is magical. You learn to enjoy things like sitting in carpool line for 45 minutes, just soaking up the calm before the storm. You regret taking for granted all the times you got to pee in silence without a child tugging on your leg or yelling “MOMMY!” from the next room. Peace and quiet are a thing of the past, and you miss them. But as soon as you go on that highly anticipated and overdue date night? You miss the sound of your little munchkins and talk about them the entire time.
5. It’s worth it. No matter how many times a day you want to pull your hair out, or how many brand new shirts get stained with spit-up, or how many nights you don’t sleep a wink because you’re taking care of a sick child, you wouldn’t trade any of it for anything in the world. Sure, your kids might be little crazies at times but they’re your little crazies, and you love them more than anything.
Happy Valentine’s Day, friends!! Whether you’re celebrating with your significant other, kids, girlfriends, or just your couch with Netflix and chocolates, I hope this day is a special one.
my pajamas | similar Shelbi pajamas
It’s no secret that I love holidays. I live for them really…the planning, the surprises, the CANDY, the festivities. The anticipation of the holiday itself is actually my favorite part and once it’s over, I’m already gearing up to plan the next. Is it too soon to be thinking about Easter? Because I’m already planning the boys’ Easter baskets and church outfits in my head.
Back to the holiday at hand…
I know Valentine’s Day gets a lot of flack for being a commercial holiday, but it doesn’t make me celebrate it any less. Z and I always go for a lunch date, followed by gifts when Bear gets home from school. Both boys are getting little toys they’re into, a book, and a shirt (around $20 total for each boy). Tonight, we’ll make homemade heart shaped pizzas, Bear’s favorite, and watch A Charlie Brown Valentine together in our jammies. I look forward to this day every year and I’m so happy it’s here!
Saturday is when I’m celebrating Galentine’s with some of my favorite ladies and I’m excited for that, too. Only downside is that I currently have pink eye in both eyes, which puts a damper on any plans. Bear had it first, who gave it to Boone, who gave it to me. The boys are better, thankfully, so that’s my main concern. They are happy, healthy, and ready for all the Valentine’s fun!
Happy Valentine’s Day to you and yours <3
top | jeans | shoes | sunnies
photos by Ban Avenue Photography
For awhile now, I’ve wanted to sit down and really dive into questions pertaining to all things blogging. It’s something I get asked about quite a bit, and I’d love to have a place to send those wanting to start a blog where they can find encouragement, tips, and my best advice. I’m so, so far from an expert on the topic, which is a big part of why I haven’t talked about this much before. But if I can help someone starting out even a little, then it’s worth my time to at least tell my story. I plan to write a post in the next few weeks that’s much more in depth and informative, explaining things like: how to monetize a blog, what it’s like working with brands, what it means to be an “influencer”, etc. But for now, I wanted to give a quick(ish) background of how Hello Honey came about.
When Zach and I first got married back in 2011, I started a blog called Fun with the Fullwoods as a way to keep our family that all lived 7+ hours away in the loop on our newlywed happenings. I was in between jobs and had a lot of time on my hands (you know, before kids) and have always loved writing. I enjoyed taking photos and writing about our weekends discovering Houston, even though my Mom was the only one who read or really even knew about our blog in the beginning. Over time, I started sharing new recipes and crafts on our blog and genuinely loved reading other blogs and getting to know the ladies behind them. I started to realize there was this whole community of bloggers and while the now prominent ones like Rachel Parcell and Emily Gemma were just starting out at the time, I was only blogging because I genuinely loved it. I had no plans of ever monetizing from it or making it a career, and fully planned on teaching and blogging in my spare time.
Fastforward a couple of years, enter Bear Clayton. I never started teaching, and stayed home with Bear instead. For obvious reasons, Fun with the Fullwoods fell by the wayside a little bit. Being a first time mom, while it was life changing in the best possible way, was also very overwhelming. I still blogged some, but just wasn’t finding the same joy in it as I had before. I started using Instagram more, solely as a way to showcase Bear’s outfits and cuteness. He took over “the gram” and I loved it! But by the time he was 2 1/2, he was a bit over the suspenders and bowties, and I didn’t want to force him to dress up and take pictures just to humor Mommy. I still wanted a creative outlet, and decided to go for something I’d always wanted to try. I started a fashion and lifestyle blog.
I wanted something different than Fun with the Fullwoods, something more fashion-focused. I wanted a clean slate, a completely new website with a new name. I hired my friend Sarah to design a new website through Squarespace and decided on the name “Hello Honey”. I brainstormed a long time and finally chose Hello Honey because of it’s nod to our Southern roots and for Bear (since Bear’s like honey and all). I knew I wanted to take this blog more seriously, so I hired my friend Aimey to take photos for me. We’d meet once every few weeks and I’d shoot 3-4 outfits at a time, a method I still do to this day almost 4 years later. I still had no intention of actually making money blogging, nor did I realize people were making a living off of their blog. I just wanted a way to express myself and since Bear was more independent at the time, the blog kept me busy and I enjoyed it.
After a month or two of launching Hello Honey in May of 2015, I started wanting more people to see my content than just my Mom (I love you, Duke!). I knew to do this, I needed to promote my blog posts on social media. I created a Facebook page for Hello Honey and shifted my Instagram to be more blog-focused with professional photos and outfit details. I started following other local bloggers and meeting up with them for lunch. This is how I met some of my very best friends, and we ended up attending our first blogging conference in February of 2016. I learned a tremendous amount at the conference, and ended up landing my first paid sponsorship because of it. I never could’ve imagined actually making money off of blogging and while it helped justify the time I was putting into it, I didn’t start a blog for that reason. Which is a big piece of advice I have for anyone starting out: you have to really love what you’re doing. If you’re wanting to start a blog solely to make money, chances are your blog will fizzle out before you ever get there. It takes so much time, dedication, and love of what you’re doing (whatever that may be, not just fashion!) before you reach a point of making money as an influencer. But more on that another day.
This got much longer than I intended it to be, per usual. But that’s how this little space of the internet came about! Some of you have been here since day one, so you knew all this already. And I can’t begin to tell you how much your support over the years has meant to me. Because of you, I get to stay home with my boys and do what I love everyday. It’s truly a dream come true and I am incredibly lucky and thankful.
I’ll be back soon with more on this topic and if you have any questions at all, please leave them in the comments and I’ll answer them in the post!