Admittedly the past few weeks have been a bit of a rough patch for lolladad and me for various reasons. Today, we managed to record a podcast in the morning, make important decisions for our business, and shortly after get into a fight that ended in one of us storming off upset. The root cause of that fight...family and not seeing eye-to-eye.
I don't know about all of you, but my husband and I are incredibly close to our families, but we may need a break of some sort - for the sake of us. Don't get me wrong, I love our families deeply and I feel incredibly grateful for them, but these days, I feel like our families and the different value systems are actually causing problems in my marriage that otherwise would not have even been an issue. I guess the optimistic side of me could spin all the BS as challenging us to have difficult conversations and getting at the core of who we are, but the pessimistic, selfish side of me thinks if we were simply more distant, we wouldn't be dealing with any of this.
We come from seemingly similar yet fundamentally different families. For ten years, we've been able to skate by and cordially manage all the intensely complicated relationships and ways in which our families influence our everyday, but I am starting to wonder how much our families are affecting our happiness. Help~ how do I carefully extract all the amazing characteristics from each of our families and family members and pass that onto our daughters without imploding first?
The Pastor who married my husband and me required us to take a premarital class before saying, "I do." The class served to enlighten us doe-eyed lovebirds about the realities of marriage. He wasn't kidding - marriage is great, but it really is a lot of work. The class covered common "issues" like money and family, but one topic that was emphasized during this crash-course in marriage was appreciation. Life gets so busy at times that it's easy to forget to appreciate [and express that appreciation for] one another.
Yesterday was Father's Day, and I had nothing but a deep appreciation for my husband and father of our three amazing girls. I know that Father's Day was yesterday, but this week [and always], I want my husband to know:
For those of you in a relationship, remember to appreciate and also feel appreciated! Mark, I appreciate you - more than I show and say
I have never been very into birthdays, but my husband's family celebrate's everyone's birthday like it's his/her 21st. Marriage is funny like that: two families, worlds, and traditions collide and you're left to adopt one family's ways or forge your own. My husband and I have, for the most part, taken bits and pieces of our past and forged our own way and traditions for our immediate family.
Today is lollaDAD's birthday. We got an early start and met his folks for breakfast, and they generously offered to have the kids sleep over tonight, so we will be going out for a quiet, s-l-o-w dinner to celebrate. Tonight dear, let's not talk about work, life stresses, etc, but celebrate you and what this year has in store. I love you more and more each year, and I'm looking forward to 2013.
Although we don't make a huge deal about our own birthdays, as parents, we feel it is our duty to make birthdays fun and important for our children. When their birthdays come around, we do our best to really celebrate, whether it's with a party, special outing, or do-whatever-you-want kind of day.
Three years ago, I adopted a friend's birthday tradition. Every birthday party this friend hosted, she had this colorful clown flag hanging somewhere around the festivities. When I asked her about it, she said a family member had made the flag for her family, so it's been a tradition to hang it up during every family member's birthday. I immediately fell in love with the idea. I wasn't going to attempt to make a birthday-themed clown banner, so I went online and found a fabric "Happy Birthday" banner I liked and purchased it. I now hang it up around the house for everyone's birthday. I've also started writing what we did in celebration of each child's birthday on the back, so they'll always know exactly how we celebrated their special day every year. Do you have any fabulous birthday traditions you'd like to share?
20 years ago I was a pimply-faced eighth-grader who spent the entire day practicing this exact line, “will you be my girlfriend?” At 2:45pm, I finally mustered up the courage to “ask her out” by the school gym, and thankfully, her answer was ‘yes!’ I know this sounds crazy, but after just a few months of dating her, I knew Hanna was the one. In fact, I have hundreds of old letters to prove how confident I was.
6 years ago today we made it official and got married in Pasadena, California. It was the happiest day of my life. Not only was I marrying someone I admire so much, but she happened to be my very best friend. But who in the world knew that one day we would become business partners?
People warned me about working with my wife and I have to admit, I was a little worried too. We are far from perfect and I didn’t want to strain our relationship by arguing over every little detail that goes into running a small business. Having launched a small business before, I knew that the work environment can often be explosive and stressful. After working on this project for a little over 2 years I’m surprised to find that we’ve somehow grown closer.
Hanna and I eat, breath, and sleep lollacup. We take every piece of feedback personally, and we do our best to create a product/service that we would want for our own family. To us, your kids and their experience with the lollacup means everything.
I’ll be honest, I’d much rather be celebrating our anniversary in Fiji... but working a tradeshow in New York was the next best choice. =)
Happy anniversary babe, love you always.
When we buy a home, I hope we find one with a double-sink/vanity. It's silly, I know, but I just want my own sink space for once! I'm pretty certain this desire stems from the fact that my husband and I spend every waking moment together. Deciding to start a small business together was not an easy decision. Before we made the first move, we had a long talk about how this was going to work and whether it would be wise to become business partners.
Our days are pretty crazy. We get up early (when the kids get up), I make breakfast and pack school lunches, while Mark gets the kids dressed and ready for school. We wolf down breakfast and run out the door. Mark and I take turns dropping the kids off at school, so one of us is able to start the work day by 8 am. Our office is in our attic, so we make the ridiculously nice commute upstairs, and start pounding away at all things Lollacup/Lollaland. Before you know it, one of us has to pick the kids up from school, make/buy dinner, play with the girls for a little bit, and get them ready for bed. After we put them down for the evening, we're back upstairs at work. Having a home office is great for so many reasons, but it makes it impossible to stop working.
Each day feels much too short and chaos abounds, but here are the 5 things we focus on in order to make things work in Lollaland: