As Mother’s Day approaches, it’s easy to feel like we’re living the in the movie Groundhog Day. If you’re a mom with young children, you face unique challenges during this time of extended family togetherness. It’s easy to wish for things to get back to normal, but is it possible to do more than just survive?
Here are 5 ways to thrive at home during social distancing.
Be intentional. Don’t just let the day unfold without order. With schoolwork, playtime, cleaning, laundry, and ALL the food prep, the day can descend into madness pretty quickly if you don’t have a plan. Before you go to bed each night, spend a few minutes thinking through what you need or want to accomplish the next day. Build in breaks for yourself. Even if your kids no longer nap, having a built-in quiet time where everyone spends at least an hour in separate rooms can be good for everyone—mom included! Keep in mind that your schedule is YOURS. This is designed to serve you and your family and no one else. If it isn’t working, you can adjust or even scrap it!
Make a seasonal list and check off the fun! Grab a piece of cardstock and some colored markers, gather the family together, and brainstorm some fun things you could do together this spring. Ideas could include taking a family walk, doing a craft together, playing a game, eating strawberry shortcake, making s’mores over a campfire, or popcorn and movie nights. Make sure the things that make the list are things you’d really enjoy doing together. And don’t make too much work for yourself! Things don’t have to be Pinterest-worthy to be fun.
Get outside every day. Make sure you take the time to get the kids out so they can run off some energy. Their ability to focus on tasks will be better, they’ll eat and sleep better, and it’ll be good for you as well!
Create opportunities for connection with friends and extended family. Being separated from those we care about is difficult. Here are a few ideas to help your kids nurture those precious relationships from a distance.
- Have a new or developing reader? Pick an age-appropriate book and have your child read a chapter a day to a loved one via FaceTime.
- Pull out a box of photos and let your school-aged children organize the photos for you. Talk about the memories they discover over dinner.
- Create some happy mail! Task the kids with creating cards and crafts to send to grandparents, cousins, friends, or even essential workers.
- Comparison is the enemy of contentment, and it’s easy to compare what we’re doing with those we see online. Use technology to inspire you, but if you sense that it is contributing to a feeling of discontent, unplug.
- Simplify in the kitchen as much as possible. Your family doesn’t need gourmet meals, they just need to be fed! Pick some super easy meals and rotate them regularly.
- You don’t have to do it all! Rely on your partner for help. You can give the kids age appropriate jobs too.
Mamas, the work you do matters. Many on our Elderberry Co. team are moms, so we understand the added workload that this stay-at-home order creates. We want to celebrate you! We’ve created the cutest little gift box for Mother’s Day. You can grab one here while supplies last!
Photo Credit: Britney Sidwell Photography
My story is not a normal one. Two years ago I posted on Facebook and that post set me on a WILD journey of entrepreneurship, building a six figure business all while breastfeeding, toddler-rearing and balancing life as a stay-at-home mom. I didn’t cut corners, but worked INSANELY hard to get to where I’m at. I can’t stay silent about how I got here, where I’m going and how you truly can discover what God created you for and live a crazy-fulfilled life. My hope is that my customers can hear my story and be inspired in some way to take a step toward pursuing a dream.
With that said, let me tell you about March. One of my business mentors once described seasons of business as having one arm wrapped around a shooting rocket ship and another hand on an extinguisher, putting out fires. That is the best way to describe how March felt for me. For our country (and entire world), March 2020 will be remembered for the historic events that took place around the pandemic of Covid-19. Our economy essentially closed its doors and we all stayed home in our best effort to "flatten the curve" and prevent our health care system from getting overwhelmed. The middle of the month was especially chaotic where it felt like every minute we were getting news updates on big events cancelling and stay-at-home orders happening in different states.
As for our business, we made the decision to close our storefront in southern Indiana. We felt that this was the safest move we could make, and as primarily an online business, we knew we could still offer our products to our community even with our doors physically closed. We were FLOODED with online orders the entire month. About 4x what we were used to. In one week, we made over 1,000 gallons of elderberry syrup! My emotions in March were all over the place:
"How am I supposed to keep up with all of this?"
"We need more help! We need more space!"
"Are we making mistakes?"
"Is our team having fun and feeling valued?"
"This is CRAZY."
"This is fun!"
"I don't know if I can do this anymore."
I could go on. I had several 3am and 5am mornings that left me with a few emotional breakdowns. This is a photo of one of those mornings (I'll leave the breakdown photo to myself)...
By the end of March, I had some serious doubts about the business I had built and my ability to run it. Yes it was (and still is) incredibly successful but that kind of accelerated growth is not easy to handle. And going through a pandemic is not easy to handle.
I've come out of March with a new appreciation for entrepreneurs and business owners. I've seen the ways that I handle adversity well and other ways I handle it not-so-well. I'm incredibly grateful for a successful business and a product that brings so much health and healing to our community. And I'm especially grateful for our customers who continue to support us and share our product with their friends and family. Our future is looking CRAZY and BRIGHT, and we plan to continue to take you along for the journey!
Have you tried our syrup? Use code ROCKETSHIP to get 15% off your order now through May 1st. Code cannot be combined with bundles or subscriptions. Enjoy!
To healthy and happy families,
Photo Credit: Photo Lulu
Here at The Elderberry Co, Elderberry Syrup is clearly a big part of what we do. You might be surprised, but we don’t spend our days only talking about Elderberry Syrup. I know, crazy right?!? We talk about our lives, our dreams, our hopes. We talk about you. We talk about how we can better our processes, and products to help our customers. For us, it is not just about the syrup. It is about empowering families to stay healthy, especially during this time of year.
If you’ve been around us long, you’ve probably heard Jenny Watson, the owner of The Elderberry Co, talk about the struggle when her son was young and getting earache after earache. She didn’t feel empowered on how to help him. If you’re a parent, you know that helpless feeling when your kid is sick and NOTHING seems to help. She found Elderberry Syrup and could see the impact that it made on her family's health. That is the biggest reason she created this company.
It may be hard to remember when you are ordering from a website, but we are a small business. There are humans behind this business. We have about six of us on staff and a few others that help periodically when we need it. From putting labels on your jars, to making syrup, to filling tea pouches, responding to emails and messages, all of that is done by our team.
When you support this business, you truly support our families and the community. If you were not aware, a portion from every jar goes to a ministry in Louisville, Ky, Safe Passage. Safe Passage is a faith-based organization working to open Kentucky’s first shelter for sexually trafficked children. Each person buying our products plays a role in providing hope and healing to young people who may not otherwise receive it! That's a HUGE deal!
This week is about being thankful for things in your life. We just wanted to take time this week to tell you how thankful we are for you. We are thankful you entrust us to help keep your family healthy. We are thankful you come to our store or email us to share stories about how our syrup has impacted your family.
We have big plans for 2020 and many ideas. Thank you for supporting us! From our Elderberry family to yours, we hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving week!
Let us know what you would love to see us come up with in 2020! Message us on instagram or Facebook or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org!