Monet or Pollock

May 26, 2022 | On Homemaking, The Parisienne Farmhouse | 1 comment

Monet or Pollock?

Thoughts on being an entrepreneur...

Happy almost weekend to you!

It’s raining; cold, in fact. I made the kids a cozy fire and sat down to stare at a blank screen…

It’s raining; cold, in fact. I made the kids a cozy fire and sat down to stare at a blank screen…

Thursday is a computer day for me. In about an hour, I’m scheduled to record the last episode of the current season of the podcast; then, I need to knock out 300 words for the Homemaker Chic book… I just placed the order for the print version of my magazine (that’s like having a baby four times a year); I’m doing some finishing touches on our new Air BnB this evening. I have to confess even with ALL this plate spinning going on; I’m sitting here with my jaw open or, at the very least, my heart full.

Will you humor me with a behind-the-scenes email?

I get asked about the business side of my routines quite often. I know other women are looking for ways to explore their creativity, stay home with their children, expand their talents, etc. ‘Parisienne Farmgirl’ as a brand is so multi-faceted that I’m extremely tentative to talk about it. People have a LOT of opinions about what I do. And I guess, that’s ‘fair enough’ since I put myself out there publically. I get letters about overdoing it; I get letters about why I don’t mention oils professionally anymore, I get notes and DM’s about the audacity of me recording a 60-second ad at the beginning of a Youtube video (as if ANYone works for free)… Instead of worrying about all those things, I like just to put my head down and work.

The truth is, I do spin a lot of plates. (That’s the way, u-huh, u-huh, I like it, u-huh, u-huh…). This home-centered entrepreneurial life isn’t for everyone. There is ZERO delineation between work life and home life. It all sort of morphs together about 18 hours a day. I start at about 5 am and quit at about 9 pm and all throughout that time is a dance between work and family. Sometime’s, it’s the funky chicken; other times, it’s a beautiful Tchaikovsky waltz…Some days it’s a gorgeous Monet-esque brushstroke with the light touching the beautiful parts ‘just so,’ and other days, it’s more like Pollock paint splatter chaos. (Like the tomato residue on my kitchen ceiling from when my ten-year-old wanted to make salsa the other day.)

The thing is, we’ve all been called to SOME work. We can’t escape it (sigh.) We have to work. As the grandpa says in the movie Return to Me, we are “blessed with work” – an expression we use a LOT in this house. Sometimes we can feel a little over blessed – true dat – but I couldn’t have it any other way.

It’s incredible, it’s creative, it’s liberating, and it’s downright TERRIFYING. Grab yourself a firey racehorse and name him “If It’s Meant to be, it’s Up To Me” jump on bareback and give him a good kick in the ribs! That’s what being an entrepreneur feels like for me most of the time. When you’re an entrepreneur you live for those 2 am ideas and when they come you write them down. The following day over coffee, you stare and the paper, and you WILL it to tell you EVERYTHING that could be wrong with that idea and how it could be better. You google domain name availability. You spend countless hours researching production methods, whether it’s a new video camera, printing costs, shipping costs, packaging… You look at it from the skeptical customer’s point of view – WHY would anyone watch this? Why would anyone pay for this? Am I filling a gap in the market? Is anyone else doing something similar, and/or can I do it better? The social media entrepreneur is her own worst critic – to be sure. I didn’t even mention equipment, hard drives that fill up every 30 days, mics that don’t charge, lighting on gloomy Wisconsin days, bra straps that show on Youtube, getting kids to be quiet while you film dialogue, and showing a dirty stove top or enough cow manure that people can see this is actually real life, but not SO much that people are horrified… Insert hysterical laughter.

When I offered my first flea market tour last month, I created the webpage, listed the packages available, hit publish, and HELD MY BREATH. Would I look ridiculous? Who would want to go to a flea market with me? When the trip sold out within a few days I was ELATED. I spent so much time hammering out that idea, and to see my audience respond to it was so very touching.

I get the same feeling on magazine release day (yesterday). The fact that a group of people in the world wants to invest in my creativity is surreal… just the fact a mom like me can HAVE a magazine and promote it beautifully on social media is surreal. It STILL just blows my mind. You see – I’ve been self-employed my entire life, and I remember the grueling days of expensive yellow page ads, going door to door, and attending local chamber of commerce mixers to schmooze and hob-nob in the hopes someone would ask for my business card… I remember months of the phone not ringing and wondering how we would make ends meet; then came the internet. Friend, it is NEVER, EVER, EVER lost on me that I can create beautiful photographs for Instagram and make a few lovely videos a month and capture your loyalty and appreciation. Every heart, thumbs up, share and purchase means SO MUCH TO ME. As I’m sure, it does to the other entrepreneurs that you support with your kind words (and quite frankly, your debit card).

Momentarily, it looks like we are going to hit 36K on Instagram. I don’t typically look at stats and all the insights social media offers – simply because I’m really not into the popularity contest. But I couldn’t help but notice this upcoming number. I came to Instagram about five years late to the game and wondered if it was even possible to build a following. I’m so thankful for each of you. I’m grateful for EACH Old World Design Society purchase, no matter if you are a “budget” $5 a month member or a die-hard print magazine collector. I’m thankful for EACH Youtube video view, no matter how slowly that channel seems to grow – I’ve read your kind words, I am HUMBLED that you chose me as a source for inspiration. I’m thankful for you.

I don’t know why I’m so emotional about this today. Maybe it’s the rain – or the previously blank computer screen, but contemplation on this subject brought about a million feelings, some of which I wanted to share. It’s not an easy job. That smear of business and home life can feel sloppy, the need to film a video when you have a zit and PMS is a BUMMER, and of course, that always hovering ‘imposter syndrome that you have to TUNE OUT and then carry on with life… I’ve got all the feels today, that’s for sure.

Would you like to continue to show your appreciation of Parisienne Farmgirl content? It’s easy and hopefully, each time you’ll feel inspired and refreshed to go make your own space beautiful:

1. When channel surfing – enjoy our Youtube content. Here are my latest three videos in a convenient playlist. EVERY view thumbs up and share matters. Really wanting to show some love? – here’s a behind-the-scenes situation we deal with – In general, It’s S.O.P. for me to need to hit 30K views per video. It’s a good metric for our channel. Sometimes when you pour SO much time into creating a video and the views are slow, it can be really disheartening. It’s all up to the Youtube gods and that’s why YOU are important. When our loyal followers watch our videos, then any views Youtube throws us are gravy. So watch, enjoy, share. I love ya for it.

2. If you want help making your home beautiful, I’d LOVE to be a part of that – there are THREE ways to join my Old World Design Society, starting at just $5. The Society members are MY PEOPLE. So. Much. Love. We are a little family, and it’s so fun to have friends who geek out over the latest antique find or a fabulous piece of furniture. The homes that are being created in the Society are gorgeous and it’s so fun to see people develop their “creator of spaces” talent!

3. ‘Need a buddy in your ear on your commute, when washing dishes or working out? Check out the Homemaker Chic podcast on iTunes, Spotify, Goole, etc. I’ve got FABULOUS coupon codes for our advertisers (all small female business owners like me) at www.homemakerchicpodcast.com

YOU are a spoke in the wheel of this entrepreneurial life of our not-so-little family. On behalf of my family – heartfelt thanks. (I’ll freely assume I speak for all the content creators that you enjoy. We thank you.) Now it looks as though the rain has let up enough so that I can go mow the Potager and pop a few more plants in the ground. Thanks for letting me share. I had no idea where this was going to go… it was a little more vulnerable than typical, but I appreciate you humoring me in this “behind the scenes” look at my routine.

Enjoy the rest of your day, friend.

à bientôt-

See you soon. -Angela, ‘Parisienne Farmgirl’

It’s incredible, it’s creative, it’s liberating, and it’s downright TERRIFYING. Grab yourself a firey racehorse and name him “If It’s Meant to be, it’s Up To Me” jump on bareback and give him a good kick in the ribs!…

1 Comment

  1. Fiona Sanders

    I’m so glad you are still doing your blog. I enjoy it very much. I totally get the entrepreneurial thing. I have been self employed since I got pregnant with my first child, and I have many plates spinning. But I love it, it’s challenging and creative. It’s my jam.

    Reply

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