Archive | October 2015

When Reality is Better Than Your Dreams

(This is the start of my blog series featuring “mompreneurs” that I know. I am writing this blog hoping that their stories will inspire other parents to venture into entrepreneurship, or if not, the very least is to give a peek on the life of our work-at-home mommies and why they deserve more than a standing ovation and a round of applause.)

She is known to the online community as Fia Tan, the entrepreneur behind Baby Barney Online Shop. In the physical world, she is Mommy Floranilla Tan Rosquita-Aragones or simply Flong to her family and friends. I am privileged to be a friend of this amazing woman and I am more than happy she obliged my constant pestering to feature her in my blog. Of course, we share the same advocacy – cloth diapering and baby wearing. 🙂

As a little girl, she dreamed of working in the corporate world. She admired women who exude class and composure, while looking fabulous and classy as they climbed the corporate world. She desired to wear stilettos as she climbed the ladder of success. God, however, has a bigger and better purpose and plan for her.

She tried her best to manage time between work and the ministry of wife and motherhood but in the end, the calling to be a full time mom prevailed. The struggle to give up the corporate dream was not easy but her desire to be a hands-on mom and a high risk pregnancy made her do the choice. Her resignation was not easy but she did it without regrets.

Being used to the demands and fast-paced way of life of the corporate world, she decided to venture into entrepreneurship. When her baby was born in 2013, she started selling pre-loved clothing and baby stuff,including ring sling baby carriers.

But it was not an easy road. Her business became on and off due to availability of stocks. It was not constant. Until God answered her prayer through a friend that is residing in The Netherlands. Her friend offered to provide a starting capital, provided that she can manage the business. Thus, the birth of the Baby Barney Online Shop.

When I asked her why the name Baby Barney, she explained that when her baby was a few months old, he would rarely smile  but when they let him watch Barney shows he would burst into laughter.

Being able to own her time is one of the things Mommy Flong love about being a “mompreneur”. It allows here to closely monitor her kids and spend precious time with them. Being a full time mom gave her the privilege to be a first hand witness in her children’s milestones in life. Kiddingly, it also allows her kids to try their products first hand.

Online entrepreneurship, according to Mommy Flong, also has its “down side”. Because she doesn’t see her clients physically, she had to trust their commitment that they are not scammers and juvenile payers. There had been several instances when her patience had been tested by demanding customers. That’s part of the risk that she had to take. Since she is based in Davao City, it is also hard to find suppliers and manufacturers. God has blessed her when she eventually found suppliers that doesn’t only supply her products but also guide her in business decision making.

As she grow in the life of motherhood, Mommy Flong realized that being a full-time mommy doesn’t hinder you from enhancing your career growth and development. You just have to look at it in a different, fresher and newer perspective.

In the future, she wants to put up a physical store in Davao City (and eventually, across the country,yeheeey!). Of course, the shop will carry products that are truly close to her heart – cloth diapers and baby wearing gears. It is in the hope that this parenting style will be mainstreamed in the country.

When I asked Mommy Flong for her advice to fellow mompreneurs, this is what she has to say: Just enjoy every milestone of your business. But don’t forget the main reason why you’ve become a mompreneur in the first place, your family. And always make sure that your husband know what you are doing. (Mommy Flong is blessed with a loving husband, he does meet ups for Davao based clients and help in the packaging and shipping of items).

Now, Mommy Flong is not just wearing stilettos, she also deserves a crown, a cape and a bouquet of fresh flowers everyday! And she need not climb the corporate ladder, she’s already in her throne.

Fulfilling the Ministry of Motherhood

When I became a mom, I temporarily lose my sanity (or so I thought!) because I entered a whole new world. I have very few friends that are moms already. Within my closest friends, there were only two of us who are mothers, the rest (all six of them) are single professionals.
I got scared and almost frustrated, I felt like I lost a part of me, that I somehow got disconnected from them. So, I prayed and asked for God’s guidance. Yes, I have a very supportive, loving and faithful husband. Yet, there are things that only fellow mommies can relate, especially when it comes to kid’s fashion and accessories (example: wrap colors, cloth diapers and warmers).
God answered my prayers in the form of mommy entrepreneur. In my constant search for baby accessories and stuff, I met plenty of mommies who can spend all day and all night discussing differences among the types of cloth diapers, why baby wearing is important, the rollercoaster ride of being a breastfeeding and co-sleeping family.
Overall, motherhood had opened up a whole new world and a new set of friendship. I don’t want to lose my old friends, they are dear and special in their own,unique albeit crazy way. But I also want to build new friends that will share with me the journey of motherhood in an advocacy that we strongly believe in.
Motherhood is a gift, a ministry and a responsibility. I am accepting this with arms wide open and a heart with overflowing love ready to be shared to fellow mommies.
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To The Husband of Mine

Sorry for snapping at you earlier today. Sorry for sulking all the way to work and banging on the car door. Sorry for being grumpy. I didn’t know what came over me, I was just feeling dark and gloomy upon waking up.
I didn’t mean to hurt you,make you feel unappreciated or worthless. I am blessed beyond measure for having a husband like you. It is just the stress of preparing for the Board meeting, the bills piling up and interrupted sleep because of the baby is taking its toll on me lately. It seems the dark cloud of depression is eating me again.
I pray that you will remain loving, patient, understanding and supportive as we struggle through this stage. I know that God is holding us in steadfast reins and control.
Know that I love you all the time. Wether I am happy, angry, sad, frustrated, my love remains steady for you. I may hate the fact that you go out at night, that you still seem to have the life that you have before we got married while mine was turned upside down but that doesn’t take my love away.
Know that I am thankful for having you. Rare is the husband that will finance his wife’s addiction to cloth diapering and baby wearing gears. I know I can be persistent until you give in to my whims, hidden in the facade of “needing it”. I know that you know that sometimes, I just ask you to buy things for me and Cloud as stress therapy. 🙂
Know that I am always grateful for being blessed by a husband like you. For being patient when depression kicks in. For telling me it will be okay when I feel like I am at the end of my sanity and I just want to shout out my anger. Thank you for being my strength, for letting me see the world from your perspective.
On top of it all, thank you for sharing the joy of raising Cloud with me. I know you struggle with every nappy change, every trip to the hospital and every mall trip. Yet, I see the priceless joy in your eyes every time you look at Babaching.
Others will never know what a blessed and wonderful feeling it is to be your friend, partner, wife. (And believe me, I have no intention of letting them experience the feeling. Unless they want the rest of their life in jail.)
Always remember that for me and Cloud, you are perfect. You are our strength, comfort and most importantly, provider. 🙂

Why Getting Married Is Not for Everyone

Society seems to have this unwritten rule that when a woman reaches a certain age, she should get married, have kids and raise a family. I find this too stereotypical, unfair and irrational.
Age should not define a woman’s capacity to be married or not. Marriage should not just be about being in your “most reproductive stage”. Not every woman who are reproductively ready is emotionally, mentally and financially ready.
We just have to accept that marriage is not for everyone. There will be women like me who CHOSE to be married and pregnant at the prime of my reproductive stage. I did it not because society had told me so. But because I knew that I wanted it, that I am ready and that I have already lived a fulfilling life as a single individual.
In our office, I am the only married woman among a bunch of seven (7) happy, beautiful and all in reproductive stage, single women. And if there’s a piece of advice I constantly give them, that is they should get married when they feel that they want to and not just because everyone is telling them to do so.
Marriage, as cliche as it may sound, is a lifetime commitment. It is equivalent to lesser time going out, putting a limit to the number of overtime that one can render and knowing that weekends should be for your partner and kids. Deciding to get married is an output of constant prayer, devotion, hard work and rock hard decision to take a complete overhaul of the lifestyle that you are used too.
It would be a better society if our friends and colleagues would stop pressuring each other to join the married wagon. To each one, his own. This is what we always say.
There is joy in marriage. In the same manner that there is joy in single-blessedness.