5 minutes with Anna | Mother’s Day
5 Minutes with Anna | Mother’s Day
This is the first in a new blog series ‘5 Minutes with Anna’. And as it’s Mother’s Day this weekend, we thought it would be a lovely way to share a little of Anna’s Story as a mum and business owner.
‘I started Also Home from my kitchen table 9 years ago in 2008 when Josh (my son) was a distant hope! I had been working for two major companies as a Designer and then Design Director and knew that if I wanted to have children and do the job I loved that I would probably have to change my lifestyle considerably. So I took the plunge and started Also Home.
For a couple of years I worked hard to build the business and then felt the time was right to introduce ‘family’ into the madness and joy of running my own business!! But first I became a puppy mummy to Asia! Not long after, in May 2011 Josh was born.
I loved being pregnant and felt well all the way through even managing 3 Far East trips to 4 countries all within the first 4 months! Looking back I think I must have been crazy. Vietnam, China, Thailand and India and all the culinary delights you generally try to avoid when travelling, let alone pregnant! I had a fairly turbulent time during my pregnancy and when Josh was 11 weeks old, I sadly became a single mum, something I had never imagined would happen to me! It was never part of my plan but there is something about motherhood that brings out the tigress in a woman and this new situation certainly did! Now more than ever, I needed my business to flourish.
I have an amazing team (check out our Meet the Team series of blog posts to get to know them) and during this time especially, it really helped to have such a dedicated and supportive team around me. Just as well because there were days I just couldn’t make it into the office! However, having my son and my business to keep getting up for really helped motivate me to keep going and keep looking forward. As I look back I am amazed that we (as a team) continued to grow the business through those hard years, but we did.
However, my story wasn’t over and I am now re married to wonderfully supportive and encouraging Jeff, and a step mum as well to his two lovely girls. They are all a huge part of my business, excited to see our products appear at home and in their bedrooms and excited to come into my office! Josh often comes into the office after school and knows the team really well. He has been known to spend time at my desk working hard on CBeebies!! He is often seen doing his homework here at the end of the day.
Working, running the business and trying to be a mum is definitely not easy. LOTS of juggling, a fair amount of guilt and constantly asking ‘am I being a good mother?’ Most weeks I feel that I am running a marathon at sprint pace!
Despite the juggling, I know that if Josh needed me, I could drop everything and be there for him. I love not having to answer to a boss and value the flexibility that working for myself brings. It’s a huge privilege and honour and one I try not to take for granted. I’ve had many ‘pinch me’ moments this year and find it amazing when I look back and see how much has changed and how far we’ve come in the last 9 years.’
Happy Mother’s Day