When I first left the corporate world a few years ago to stay home with my baby daughter, I may have left a physical work place, but I always kept one foot in design. I had to for my sanity! Babies are HARD. And DRAINING. And worst of all, staying at home is ISOLATING. So before I handed in my notice, I was already preparing myself mentally for being a, more accurately, work-at-home parent. I thought, "Yes! Working and staying home. The best of both worlds!" Not exactly. What kept me going? Finding amazing clients that gave me a lot of creative freedom.
As the Art Director at American Girl Magazine for 7 years, I gained valuable knowledge in a niche market. So even though I have branched out quite a bit since then (working again in advertising, which I'm also no stranger to), I continued to stay close to what I was most in tuned to, children's publishing. Enter Reedsy.com, a marketplace for independent publishers.
I've been a designer with Reedsy for over 2 years and have gotten some incredible jobs through them. Most recently I finished designing The Lemonade Stand Cookbook with Kathy Strahs, founder of Burnt Cheese Press, and the brains behind the book. It took almost half a year of hard work and late nights but it is now literally hot off the press! I hope anyone reading this (Hello, hello! Are you out there?) checks it out and picks up a copy for themselves and all the kids in their life, girls OR boys. The quality is high and the content is perfectly appropriate for anyone as young as 6 and as old as 99! I plan on making these recipes with my little one, who's only 3, but she loves baking like her mamma. And if lemonade or sweets and treats aren't your thing (you animal), then you'll love the business tips and easy, but impressive, crafts. Did I mention all the steps are fully illustrated?
If it weren't for this opportunity to work with Kathy, and to re-unite with an old friend, Carol Yoshizumi, a fantastically talented illustrator, I may have gone insane this winter. Thanks for saving me ladies...my fellow work-at-home moms! And for having an actual, real-in-my-hands book to show for it!
So as my little girl prepares for preschool this fall and I slowly navigate my way back into office culture, I hope to still be able to keep a toe in children's publishing. Who knows, maybe someday I'll kick start my own book using one of the many ideas floating around in my noggin. Until then, here's to more collaborations with work-at-home parents like me!
#lemonadestandcookbook #girlboss #momboss