International Boss Mum- Lisa Jackman

Mommy of the month Lisa Jackman is the owner of a UK-based brand Harls&Ted. What started as just catchy quotes has grown into much more and will soon be expanding. The name for the brand was  inspired by her two beautiful children Harlie and Ted.

MomTea-What inspired the brand?

Lisa Jackman- I was constantly wearing my boyfriends now husbands oversized sweatshirt and thought it was time to get my own and the idea came from there.

MomTea- How do you craft the shirts?

Lisa Jackman- I make up each sweatshirt at home so a lot of time, effort and ;love really does go in to it.

MomTea- How do you balance your business and motherhood?

Lisa Jackman- That’s the one thing I have found hard the business side of it is easy part trying to find the time to build on it is the hardest…. Harlie and Teddy’s needs always come first they are still so young and need to still do everything for them so I find myself working til really late at night to fit in anything to do with the brand. However seeing the brand become so popular in such a short space of time makes all late nights worth it.

MomTea- Advice you would give to other moms who want to start a business?

Lisa Jackman- My drive was to be a positive role model in my children’s lives and if working my butt off meant they would one day grow up and say… I want to be like mummy ” then that would mean I had to succeeded in what I set out to do”.

What I find most inspiring about Lisa’s brand is that she just started in September 2016. Its one thing to have a vision another to make that vision come to life. Yes this brand is based in UK but can be delivered worldwide. Check out her site http://www.harlsandted.com. There is nothing better to see a mompernuer successfully building a brand and still being able to put motherhood first.

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Saying Goodbye, While saying Hello

Losing someone is never easy. The quote that always comes to mind for me is ” The righteous perish, and no one takes it to heart; the devout are taken away, and no one understands that the righteous are taken away to be spared from evil. Those who walk uprightly enter into peace; they find rest as they lie in death”.

I have always wondered how my cousin copes with the loss of her mother especially during the holidays. Jamaira and my aunt Santonya were the perfect duo. My aunt was a SUPER SINGLE MOM, weather it was styling my cousin hair or making her the most fashionable kid in her class. So when tragedy struck it was hard to see that smiling face go, but through everything the legacy and the lives Aunt Santonya lives on here is a first time look from Jamaira.


MomTea: What is your greatest memory of your mother?

Jamaira: A great memory is her being a hair stylist because I never had to worry about getting my hair done, and also sleeping with her I was pretty much a mama’s girl and I slept with her till I was 15 all the way up until she passed away.

MomTea: How old were you when your mother passed? Do you remember what caused her death? And how do you remember that day happening?

Jamaira:I was 15 and I remember it as an everyday morning we both where getting ready for school and color contacts where in then lol so I was calling her to help me and she didn’t answer that’s when I found her in the room on the floor. The cause was a ruptured brain aneurysm.

MomTea: Did anyone step in and play the motherly role? Who was your support?

Jamaira:At the time My family as a whole stepped up to make sure I was okay and at that point every women that was in my life started to play a mother role from aunts, and my mom close friends , and many friends of the family became a mother to me in their own way. My uncle and his wife were the only people who made sure if I felt like I needed professional help to let them know. So the summer of my Junior year I was put in a grieving camp for children who lost love ones and it was the most amazing experience I’ve had. It was my first time going to a summer camp and it was all around helpful to be around people my age and even younger that were going through the same type of experience. It help me deal with the loss emotionally and help me look for the good in the tragedy itself.

MomTea:Are their times when you reflect and feel as though you need your mothers support?

Jamaira:It really didn’t hit me that I needed her the most until I started college because that’s a point when I had to transition from a teenage to a young adult. Also I had my daughter at 21, so that was a big hit because as a women when you have your first child your mother is your biggest supporter. It hit me hard then because I wasn’t able to have her there to teach me and show me things.

MomTea: Now that you’re a mom are there certain traits of your mother that you recognize in your own parenting?

Jamaira: When it comes to discipline yes because my mother just yelled at me she never really whooped me or physically disciplined me  until I got older so I feel myself at times doing that but I try to withdraw from it cause I didn’t like to be yelled at so much lol. In other aspects not at all because my mom was very creative and I’m far from it I feel like I’m a boring mom compared to her cause I’m always so focused on providing and making my daughter has what she needs.

MomTea:Things that you did/didn’t learn from your mom?

Jamaira: This is the hardest question because I felt like as I was getting older my mom didn’t go into teaching things a young lady would need to know for whatever her reason was. The only lesson I can think of is since she loved kids, even though I was an only child I was never alone. I didn’t like to share at all and I feel like she tried to instill in me at an early age to share and always be a helping hand to people less fortune because that was something she was really big on.

MomTea: Encouraging words you would give to others in similar situation?

Jamaira:This is hard to say because I find myself still grieving and coping with her being gone but I would be honest and say its hard especially if your close to a parent that passes and it may not seem like it but it will eventually get better, but never question God because we are not made to understand why someone’s time is up and its best to keep positive thoughts about that person and remember what you learned and memories shared.

Through my cousin I have learned a valuable lesson though sometimes saying goodbye can be hard saying hello can be beautiful. Jamaira consistently shows strength and has over came so much her mothers legacy lives on in her as well as her children. The one thing I loved most about my aunt was her smile I’m forever grateful that my cousin has that same smile.

 

The GOAT

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size,But when I start to tell them,They think I’m telling lies.I say,It’s in the reach of my arms,The span of my hips,The stride of my step,The curl of my lips.I’m a woman,Phenomenally.Phenomenal woman,
That’s me. (Maya Angelou)

I couldn’t think of any other woman to feature better than the GOAT herself. GOAT meaning the greatest of all time. My grandma Andrea better known as cookie. Is nothing short of amazing. Everything I am and will be is because of the impact that she’s made in my life. She’s a wonderful mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. Driven educated and God-fearing. Mema loves unconditionally but will always prove her point of always being right. Her favorite saying “You don’t believe fat meat is greasy” along with her sarcasm makes her an angel on earth.

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I was always attached to my grandma hip polar opposites, I can be a chatter box while my grandmother (Mema) is very reserved. Mema was always in my corner holding me down going the extra mile. Most grandparents just buy the really cool gifts that your parents can’t afford or won’t get but my grandma went above and beyond in every aspect. Mema is very hands on still to this day. She taught me how to line my lips as well as drive a car. She has taught me independece and that a man is like a purse, a accesory but not a necessity.

She was a single mother who raised two after her and my grandfather divorced. The saying “It takes a village to raise a child” was known in our household, when me grandmother took on the challenge of parenting a teenage daughter who had a child. There was never a missed meal or lesson because my grandmother provided. The biggest cheerleader and fan supporting me in sports as well as assuring me that education was key to success in life.

I was very rebellious in my younger years. What changed for me was when I went to college my grandmother helped me fill out my FASFA apply for housing. It wasn’t until I got to college that I truly could grasp all that my grandmother did for me along the years. There is no way I could pay her back for all that she has done, but when I saw the pure joy she had seeing me achieve honor roll in college and join organizations I realized that it was all worth it. There was no greater happiness than seeing the person I seek validation from be proud of me. All of the hard work my grandmother put into molding me into the woman I am did not go in vain.

Mema didn’t have to do it,but she did allowing me a oppurunity to go to the best of schools, putting me into activites to help with my social skills and keep me busy, taking me to St.Matthews and allowing God to be a pressences in my life. She is truly the Greatest of all Time and has given to me what people search a lifetime to find which is a admirabel role model. I couldnt think of a better month to honor her in with Novemeber being her birthday month. As well as take the oppurtunity to say thank you for everything and never giving up on me.

Love You,

Modern Cleopatra

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Raven Hughes

Not all Queens wear crowns. I always see the verse “God is within her, she will not fall. This verse truly makes me think of Raven though I do not know her on a personal level I watched her and her husband Ward go through the challenge of having a premature baby. Raven’s story speaks volumes to see the unconditional love that a mother can have for their child and go above and beyond is beautiful. It was an honor to interview her and to get to know the  mom a little more. Parenting is unpredictable, but nothing is IMPOSSIBLE.

MomTea- When was your original due date?

Raven-My original due date was June 9th

MomTea- At what point did you know there was a complication with the pregnancy?

Raven- Nine days before birth they found a complication during my 25th week sonograms, reverse diastolic flow. It was a very serious complication and I was at risk for needing an emercengy c-section at any moment.

MomTea- How far along were you once you delivered?

Raven- I gave birth at exactly 27 weeks.

MomTea- How was the decision to deliver early made?

Raven- I had an emergency C-Section. They spoke to me about how I felt about delivering that day and I told them I was only nervous for the surgery. They really wanted to keep me until I hit 30 weeks but once he showed signs of complications on the inside they didn’t want to risk anything. The words they used were, “We would rather deliver a somewhat healthy baby right now than wait until he is showing rapid signs of distress.”  I agreed and the surgery was set for noon.

MomTea- How did you feel upon leaving the hospital? And where did you find strength and support.

Raven-When I left the hospital I felt empty and my mind was cluttered. I had family in town and I couldn’t focus on anything but thinking about my baby and going to visit him the next day even though I was advised to keep it cool and rest. Coping was not a skill I had for this moment in my life. Everyday of March felt like hell. My husband and mom did the coping for me. They had people praying for me. I truly believe God changed it all around for me once April hit. Somehow, I was then able to breathe and be present with my husband. I could speak more than a few words at a time and I took showers again like I used to. I take no credit for coping I did’t know how. The prayers of everyone around me changed my feelings toward my situation I didn’t. I had a lot of support! My husband Ward was amazing! I was torn to pieces and he allowed me to have that time even though he hated to see me look and feel so bad. My mom was also another big support system. She kept me motivated to get through school and let me cry to her when I needed, which she never really does because she always likes to tell me not to cry and find ways to fix my problems. My friends and family called me and checked on me. If I never felt love before, I felt it during that time. Even Facebook friends and people I went to high school with showed me support and I learned a lot about different people. The support was amazing and I’m so appreciative of it.

MomTea- Are there challenges of having a premature child or being a mom to a preemie?

Raven-There are many challenges to having a preemie but I’ll list 3 big ones for when he/she is in the NICU. Number one is not having them at home. Lucky for me I had a car and the hospital was only 25 minutes away but I visited everyday and for hours at a time. I was in grad school and had such a hard time focusing. Second is having the nurses and doctors tell you when you can and cannot touch your own child. I didn’t get to hold him for 9 days. It was one of the roughest times of the NICU experience. And thirdly, being constantly scared that a complication will arise and when one does arise, knowing what that means for your baby.

MomTea- Will there be more adorable Hughes babies?

Raven- At first I didn’t want more children. Was so traumatized by having a micro preemie. But now I do. I miss being pregnant and I want to experience being pregnant and getting to full term. My pregnancy was such a blur. Right when I started feeling the kick and movements really well, he had to come out.

MomTea-Advice for preemie moms.

Raven-It will be okay. We never think it’s okay, we always worry and we never think it will end but it does. Your baby comes home,the NICU becomes an experience and not your life and your baby grows. One day you won’t look to the monitors to know if your baby is getting enough oxygen or to check on his stats. It all works out. But while you’re going through your experience, take time to feel those emotions. Don’t try to hide them, be as honest s you can because you deserve that time and you need it. Learn to lean on those who are there for you and take the help given. If you’re not fine, admit that. Those are the things I did. Normally I am a very emotionless person but being a NICU/preemie mom brought out all the emotions I could ever imagine and I’m happy that I felt them.

 

Introducing SuaveHaus

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MOMMY OF THE WEEK-SuaveHaus

You know those moms that you see who seem so flawless. The moms who slay the PTA meeting, work and the gym. Well Patrice Hickson better known as SuaveHaus is that mom. She is a fashion stylist based in Nashville.She balancess being a mother to a beautiful energetic 6-year-old Layla, as well as a stylist who hold it down in corporate by day.
Whats even better is she’s my cousin. A lot of women lose their sense of fashion after becoming a mom. Could be to lack of energy or time restraints. I myself can admit to putting more effort into Kai’s wardrobe than my own. I reached out to Patrice recently and wanted the tea on how to be a fashionable mom on a budget with little time.

TearuaL:What tips would give to busy moms?
SuaveHaus: To Find time to cater to YOU!

TearuaL:As a stylist what inspires you?
SuaveHaus: Styling people and showcasing their personality through what they wear. Having them make a statement without using words.

TearuaL: What places do you shop?
SuaveHaus: Everywhere! But my favorites are boutiques, ASOS and forever 21

TearuaL: What tips do you have for moms?

SuaveHaus: Find time to cater to you

TearuaL: What inspired you to become a stylist?

SuaveHaus: My sorority sister, husband and best friends gave me the push. I had always been interested in fashion.

TearuaL: Whats your favorite fashion memory?

SuaveHaus: Walking into my college campus, student center on Wednesdays.

Through the breif convo with Patrice I learned that no matter the situation you have to make “ME” time. The best thing about fashion is there is no rules. You just have to find your own style rather that be Boho Chic or Glamorous.

 

 

Crystal Francis

Every week I want to shout out a special mom. The first mommy of the week feature goes to Crystalimage.jpeg Francis. A classmate who I met at Texas Southern University. Not only is she an extraordinary mom but she is also a wife and a military veteran. The way that Crystal keeps the balance is more than amazing. Her big heart and caring spirit carries over with her working with special needs children.
TearuaL: What do find most challenging about being a mom?
Crystal Francis: Feeling like I’m not doing enough in a world so driven by technology I have to make certain I put down the phone/tablet and get my kid off his so we can have real interaction every day.
TearuaL: Are there any benefits for being a veteran and a mom?
Crystal Francis: I’m definitely good with a schedule and thinking on my feet because the army instilled in me to always Charlie Mike or Continue Mission even when things don’t go as planned.
TearuaL:When working with special needs children what is one thing you have learned or taught that you use in your own parenting life?
Crystal Francis:Working with special needs children has taught me that no child is perfect and it has given me a multitude of patience when dealing with my own child. Helping my non verbal kids communicate their needs has helped me with my two year old showing him how to communicate his needs without whining or throwing a tantrum
TearuaL: Tips/Advice you would give to mommy with toddler children.
Crystal Francis:Don’t compare your child to others and celebrate their accomplishments. Don’t get embarrassed when your kid falls out or doesn’t listen it’s building character every time you tell them no and they do it anyway it shows determination and drive.
The greatest thing I learned from interviewing Crystal was that you learn how to deal with the adult world by viewing through the eyes of children. Thank you Crystal Francis.