In 2017, SmartMom launched the Real Life SmartMom series featuring your favorite Mommy Bloggers, experts and influencers. We go to these women for advice, recipes, support and whenever Google comes up with an answer we don’t like. Let’s get to know these amazing mommas a bit better – why? Because they are SmartMoms; and smart moms talk to SmartMoms.
Welcome to the SmartMom community Stacy Anderson, founder of I am Happy! We are “happily” featuring Stacy as one of our Real Life SmartMoms because she makes it her business to make moms happy. She provides educational content about the ins and outs of motherhood (think breastfeeding, encouraging speech, and bed-wetting issues) through her podcast and providing “I am Happy” products that are safe for babies, kids, and moms alike. Let’s get to know the momprenuer whose mission it is to make you smile.
Tell us about your kids: names, ages, and fun facts.
My name is Stacy Anderson. I have 2 kids, a 4 year old girl, and a rambunctious 2.5 year old boy. My daughter is 4 going on 14, but very responsible and thinks she is my son’s mom, and my son is fun loving, but very stubborn. They keep me really busy, but I love them to death!
How did becoming a mom change who you are?
Becoming a mom changed me because I was no longer Stacy. I was now mommy first. It is a humbling experience, having someone completely dependent on you for food, to stay warm, and clean. It gives you perspective, and it really made me slow down in life and appreciate the small things. When breastfeeding with my first, I would just stare at her while she ate. I had never done that before, just do nothing, and really enjoy the moment. It was liberating, and peaceful.
What’s your best piece of advice for a first time mom?
Don’t sweat the small stuff. Your kids are much tougher than they look. Every baby screams their head off. It is ok. It is just part of being a mom. Other moms get it. Don’t be embarrassed when you are out and your baby starts crying.
What are some of your favorite things about your kids?
My daughter is incredibly thoughtful. She constantly checks on me to see if I am ok when I don’t feel well. It is very endearing. My son can make anyone smile. He just looks at them, laughs to himself, then the other person is smiling away.
How do you balance work and family?
My new mantra is doing less. I have slimmed down my to-do list quite a bit. This also involves mental and physical clutter. We’ve gotten rid of a ton of toys, clothes, and just general things that are not 100% necessary around the house. This has created a much cleaner environment that leads to less upkeep. For work, I have 3 priorities for the year for the business. I keep it really lean. During the day, I try to accomplish 1-2 work things a day, and then 1-2 personal/family things. I also have help, and that really makes a difference as well.
What does an ideal day look like for you?
I wake up at 5AM, and have a quiet morning between 5-6AM. Then, I get breakfast ready for the kids, and wake them up a little before 7AM. I walk them to school, and then I work on my one thing in the morning. I break for an interview or meeting, and then take a walk/get outside and enjoy lunch.
On an ideal day, after lunch, I will spend some special time with one of my kids, then rest and read a little in the afternoon before starting the evening routine. We do dinner, bath time, tea time with the kids, bedtime stories, and then bedtime. On an ideal day, the kids are in bed by 7:30PM, and my husband and I can relax for an hour before bedtime. I know it sounds boring, but that is pretty much my ideal day.
What were some of the biggest questions you had or challenges you faced as a first time mom?
One of the biggest challenges I had when I became a mom was finding a good daycare provider. All the daycares were full, but we needed daycare for my daughter. We ended up with a less than ideal daycare, and switched her to a good daycare when she was 1 years old. We have been there for 3 years now. It is very stressful when you have someone else who is taking care of your kids for the majority of the day. You want it to be someone who can do better than you could ever do. When that did not happen, I felt like a horrible mother, and wanted to find a better place as soon as I could.
What was the most surprising or unexpected thing about becoming a mom?
I always knew that I wanted kids, but the most surprising thing is how happy the kids make me. I know that sounds cliche or boring, but it is true. Of course I want to pull my hair out half the time when they are running around not listening to me. But, those special moments when I cuddle with them, they share a story with me, or accomplish something new are just magical, and they make me so happy I decided to have kids.
How would you describe what you do for your podcast?
I am the interviewee for the podcast. We have weekly guests on the show and the interview lasts between 15-45 minutes, depending on the guest. We like to keep it short when possible so parents can get their information in bite size chunks. But, the whole premise of the podcast is about disseminating useful advice to help parents to becoming happier, and more content, thus in turn helping their kids to do the same.