As of February 19th, I officially hit 3 months of being in business. Whew, it has been such an emotional journey so far. The word I would use to describe the first month is crazy. There was a lot of hype and support. Plus it helped that timing was on my side- Christmas was a little over a month away. Everyone was in the holiday spirit, and my candles made the perfect gift. I ended up selling out of my first collection! This didn't happen without some bumps however. I've learned quite a bit so far (probably enough to write a book) but I wanted to discuss some of the areas that I learned the most in.
Despite these learning areas, I am still just as passionate and excited to continue in this journey. Building a business from scratch involves a lot of trials and errors, numerous hours and money invested, doubts, fears, tears, frustrations and more. It is definitely a marathon mentality opposed to a sprint, and being patient through it all is a struggle!
I want to encourage those of you who are wanting to start a business or are in their first few months of starting, and are looking for someone who can share in the struggles of just starting out. There will be times when it feels like no one is rooting for you. There will be times when it feels like the sales won't come in. There will be times when you have to start completely over because the product didn't come out right. Just don't give up.
You've got this!
For some, organization skills are like a foreign language. For others, it’s like second nature. I tend to find myself closer to the second nature side. There are areas in life that’d I’d like to think I’m pretty good at being organized in. When it comes to my finances, balancing the kids schedule, and planning out the meals for the week, I do pretty well.
But if I can be honest, I don’t have it all together. I sometimes struggle with organizing my paperwork and emails. I do well initially, but as I add more and more paperwork, it gets to be a bit much, and I let it pile up until I can “get to it later”. And let’s not even talk about personal emails…Currently I’m showing 9,462 unread just in one account lol. Someone help me clear these out please!
Now that we’ve gotten some of my struggles with being organized out of the way, let me give you some tips on the areas that I’ve mastered.
My finances –
There are several methods that I use in order to help me stay organized.
Lucky for me, my kids are still fairly young, so their schedules aren’t too filled with activities. During the week, I mostly have to ensure I’m getting them to and from school on time.
This has been a huge life saver for me during the week.
The key for me was figuring out the areas that I was most disorganized in and starting there. If you struggle with finances, balancing your scheduling, or just choosing your meals for the week, I encourage you to pick one and see how you can incorporate the suggestions into your life. And do what works for you. Feel free to tweak any of them to better fit your lifestyle.
Can’t wait to hear how you’re getting more organized in 2020!
I write this blog to you guys from a heavy place. It’s been 2 days since the passing of one of the greatest professional basketball players of our time –Kobe Bryant and his beautiful daughter Gigi. His passing is affecting so many, even those who only knew OF him. As I write this, it’s also going on a year since my divorce, and I can’t help but think of the horrible moments that took place that day also. In light of these two situations, I wanted to help those who may be hurting because you’re grieving a loss.
Often times, it’s hard to even process what just happened because we’re still in denial. We say things like “This can’t be real” “This can’t be happening” “I must be dreaming or in a nightmare” when in reality it is happening. This is what I like to think is the first stage of the grieving process. This taste of reality hits hard when there's physical evidence to confirm it. For example, I was no longer in denial when I had the papers in my hand signed by the judge.
Some of us may bypass the denial phase and go straight into shock. We still can’t believe that this has happened, and we’re just trying to wrap our heads around what happened in hopes of it making sense. I want you to know that it may never make sense, and at some point we have to come to terms that all of our questions may or may not get answered.
After the shock wears off, we start to really feel the impact of the loss. In this phase, we can experience a series of emotions such as deep sadness. We find it hard to stop crying, and even when it feels like there are no more tears, we still bleed out more. It seems that no amount of comfort helps. We may also experience anger. We are mad with God, ourselves, or the “universe” for allowing this to happen. We get easily agitated or annoyed by the smallest of things because we’re angry and want those around us to feel that we are hurting. I’ve been here before. The best thing for me was to remove myself from those closest to me and take a break from all of the distractions so that I could sit in silence and calm down.
After we’ve experienced the rollercoaster of feelings, we land at accepting the loss. And by accepting, I don’t mean being “OK” with it. Or that you’re all of a sudden “good.” By accepting the loss, I mean that we begin to understand that the loss is unfortunately out of our control. We accept that it happened. We accept that this will forever change our lives.
The difficult thing about dealing with grief or difficult times is that there’s no magic formula, and everyone has their own way of healing through the pain. However, in moments like these I try to go to God. There’s a scripture found in Psalms 34:18 that says, “The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed.” (NLT)
Many of our spirits are crushed by Kobe, his daughter, and the other families who died along with him in the crash. I pray that as you recognize your grieving process, and learn to heal you too can leave a legacy as great as he did.
I don't know about you guys, but I struggled a lot in the self care department in 2019. To those of you who made yourself a priority last year - kudos! There were so many factors that contributed to my lacking such as family setbacks, moving, starting a new position at work, and birthing a new business. Although each of these were legitimate reasons, I know that I still have to hold myself accountable, and work on not always putting myself last. Can we all agree to indulge in more self-care this year? If you're needing a good place to start or some ideas on how to achieve this, continue reading.
The first thing that I will be doing is allowing myself to wine down for 10-15 min after getting home from work and or picking up the kids. I'm guilty of coming home and immediately starting to clean or cook dinner while still in my work clothes! This is not good - it makes me more anxious and stressed. Instead, I'm going to commit to changing my clothes first, and then either laying down in the bed or sitting down to regroup. Only then, will I start cleaning or cooking. This way, I'm better prepared and can say a quick prayer for energy, grab a glass of wine, and ask Alexa to play some good music.
The next thing I'll be doing this year to help with self care is deciding at the beginning of each month, what's something that I've either always wanted to do or just something that I genuinely enjoy doing. This could be learning a new hobby, going to a new restaurant, giving myself a facial, scheduling a massage, etc. The goal is to decide at the beginning of the month, and then pick a date that I can feasibly do whatever it is. For this month, I desperately need a massage - I will be treating myself to that before the month is out.
Lastly, I'd like to be more aware and in-tune with my energy levels. Like most moms, we tend to overextend ourselves, and this does a disservice to our self-care needs. One of the best forms of self-care is knowing when you're physically, mentally, or spiritually drained, and taking the time to re-charge. It's okay to say, "Let's talk later" "Let's reschedule" or whatever it is that's commanding your attention.
There's so much more that can be done to improve how you take care of yourself, but it's important to start - no matter how small it may seem. I look forward to hearing how you've improved throughout the year.
Happy New Year!
Now that your candle has made it to your home, it’s important to know how to care for it so that you can get the most use.
The key to a great candle is ensuring your first burn is done right. The first burn sets the tone for how the rest of the candle will burn. You will want to allow 4 hours for your candle to burn and allow the wax to melt as close to the edge as possible. This is what helps your candle burn evenly and give off the best scent.
After you’ve burned your candle for 4 hours, and it has cooled down and solidified, you’ll want to trim your wick 1⁄4 inch before your next burn. Many of us don’t do this today. Even I wasn’t aware of this recommendation until I began my candle business journey. The reason you want to try to trim your wick in between burns is to help your candle continue to burn clean and bright. The wick can take the form of a mushroom shape which can dull the flame.
Another way to care for your candle is to monitor the wax usage. When there’s approximately 1⁄2 of wax left at the bottom of the candle, stop burning your candle. When such little wax is left, the candle jar can get too hot, which is not good for anyone.
Lastly, never leave your candle unattended, and always keep them out of reach of children. We want these candles to provide an experience that relaxes you in a safe environment.
I hope that this is helpful for you guys! Complete the Contact Us form if you think of any questions while you enjoy the candles!
The holidays can be hectic when it comes to gift giving. Allow us to take some of the stress out of that for you by selecting one of our products.
MilanMonet Luxe has the perfect candle for that family member you love, that friend you share everything with, or those coworkers who you work tirelessly with Monday – Friday to get stuff done with.
We also have the perfect accessories for kids who love to express themselves in a fun way.
Give a gift that makes a statement this season.
Gift Buying Musts:
Start early – The sooner you can begin to plan out what you want to gift the better. Stores are less crowded, there’s still many options to choose from, and you’re less anxious.
Budget – Don’t break the bank. Once you plan out what you want to purchase you can begin to budget for those gifts, and set aside money to pay for them.
Have fun – The holidays are a fun time of the year. Embrace being able to bless someone with a gift, so that you can enjoy the smile on their face.
There has always been a part of me that wanted to be my own boss. I was fortunate to have a taste of entrepreneurship at at early age. My first products were making bead animals and lanyards. My parents helped me set up a booth at a flee market, and I sold my products. I remember being so excited to make things for kids that people wanted and were willing to pay for. This excitement led to me try out various Multi-level marketing companies. I was always sold on the fact that I could essentially be my own boss by selling someone else's products; however, I wasn't selling my own products. My desire to start something of my own grew even stronger. I want to have something that I can pass on to future generations. My family loves candles and natural products. I believe there's beauty in learning what's in the products we love to use and making sure they're safe. So I thought, why not turn this into a business? I was afraid of failure and not knowing where to start, but then I turned to Isaiah 41:10. After reading this scripture, I couldn't help but feel empowered. I have faith in this journey, and I hope to inspire you to start your own business journey!
Tierra Gerdine, Mompreneur and friend passionate about entrepreneurship and sharing her story.