I love to follow success stories as that gives me a boost to work more and be active as much as I can. I also study their course plan and analyze what made them to stay separate in the crowd. Hence I started this Success stories series and I am really enjoying it. If you want to know about the previous episode please do click here for the first guest and here comes the second guest over here
So here comes my third person who is the Queen of crafts in our City. Queen of crafts in Smyrna. I met her through a favourite group of Georgia Moms and Munchkins facebook group where we used to do toddler takeovers throughout the city. During my earlier days in Atlanta only because of this group I was able to settle down soon! And Ms. Abby does a wonderful job where she lets her home backyard to do crafts for the toddlers and we enjoyed the time we were there. So let’s check out what she has to say about her life!
Explain yourself in about 10 words
I am an artist, a teacher, a wife and mother, and above all a leader. I love to be busy and I love a challenge. I am honest and loyal and am unapologetically enthusiastic about my family AND my passions!
Tell us about your ‘your business’.
I started Art With Ms Abby as a pop up art camp in the backyard over the summer of 2018. After stepping down from my part time art teacher position when my 2nd son was born, I was missing that interaction with students. Since then I have led baby/toddler groups at the Smyrna Public Library, the Community Center in Smyrna and at Jali’s Art World in Smyrna Market Village. I also do mobile playdates, birthday parties, private lessons, classes at local preschools- pretty much anything you can think of!
I really focus on sensory experiences, especially for the very young children. They are developing at such a rapid pace and the more exposure to different materials, the better. I also love using repurposed or upcycled materials. I like the green aspect, I like exposing the children to looking at old things in a new way and children tend to accumulate lots of plastic stuff that we don’t need, so this is sort of my answer to all of that!
What makes you business unique?
I taught art off and on for 9 years in private schools, after 18 years as a freelance costume designer. I also studied visual art, art history, fashion merchandising and design in school so, with that background, I feel like I give the children a unique and varied point of view. Also, after living in France for about half of my childhood, I think that definitely colors my world view in a positive way. I am extremely welcoming of children of all backgrounds and levels. We are all born artists! I think my background makes my offerings unique. That and the focus on both the sensory and up-cycled element.
How many children do you have? Ages? What do they think about you being a mompreneur?
I am mom to Henry, age 6.5 and Simon, age 1.5. Henry definitely enjoys and appreciates that I always have an art project at the ready! He loves to be my helper when I have a class that meets when he is not in school. Whether he knows it or not, he also enjoys the flexibility that I have my working from home and having such control of my schedule. I pick him up from the bus every day and that is such a blessing to us all. I think Simon will feel the same way as he gets bigger. They are both excellent artists, if I do say so myself!
How do you juggle motherhood and your work?
Juggling it all is tricky. Right now, I need to be prepping for this week- I am already behind schedule as we all had the stomach bug!- but Henry is home from school and we are both still under the weather. You just have to squeeze it into the pockets of time you do have, and try to have a schedule that works for you and your family.
What is the best part about your work? What were the challenges involved?
There are challenges, every day. Those challenges are getting enough children to fill my classes because everyone is busy and trying to accommodate everyone’s schedules. Right now, I only have class on Tuesday and Thursday mornings because that is all I can manage right now. I have tried to juggle more but then something or someone suffers. So, I am just trying to keep the balance! I would love to have my own studio which would alleviate some of that problem… maybe one day soon? 🙂
The best part- is working with the kids. I love them! I love making art with kids, mine and yours! They are such sponges and they tend to be fearless, in a good way! Or, it can help them develop skills that they need to really take on their tiny but growing world.
Any advice for mompreneurs?
Advice for mompreneurs? Don’t think of yourself as a mompreneur. You are an entrepreneur who happens to be a mom. Take yourself and your business seriously and others will too.
What is the one most important parenting rule you live by?
My parenting rule would be- stay flexible and present in the moment. They grow TOO fast!
Just for fun: If you were a beverage, which beverage would you be?
If I were a beverage? What would I be? Coffee!
To follow her work or contact her you could reach her at her facebook page Art with Ms. Abby