Monday, April 9, 2012

in {her} shoes...andrea

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today's guest poster for the in {her} shoes series is andrea from signs by andrea.  she is so totally creative and makes phenomenal signs.  and she's got the most gorgeous hair!  no seriously, look at it! 

Hi! I'm Andrea Steed.  Nice to meet you! :)  I blog over at my personal blog and my personalized painted signs and posters web site

I like to think of myself as an artist, a writer, an organizer, a planner...and oh yeah, a mom.

I have two great-looking kids who are *just* leaving the toddler stage and sprinting into their childhood.
Whew.  Those first few years of diapers, feeding, and crying were rough!  But we're getting our footing now and turning into a typical little family busy with school, play, work and rest.

I'm a northerner-moved south and married to my high school sweetheart. We both work from home - Signs by Andrea (me) and Infinite Publishing (him) - and do the best we can to mix and mesh our home and work lives amongst the mess of toys and tears that come with being a family with young kids.
What is the most challenging part of being the type of mom you are?
I daily have to remind myself that sometimes kids need to cry, whining comes with the territory, and I can always practice having more patience.  In short, my biggest challenge is to remember that it's my job to TEACH my kids how to respond and react to the world around them, and I can't just expect them to know how (that's when the whining and crying usually comes into play).

What is the most rewarding?
Watching them develop their own unique personalities has been pretty stinkin' remarkable.

My son loves guitars, music and singing. We don't know where that obsession came from (neither of us play instruments, unless you count an .mp3 player), but if he's a rock-n-roll icon one day, I'll have the home videos to prove he started at age 2.

And my daughter?  Don't even think about surprising her, unless it's with something she's already familiar with.  She needs to tip-toe *very* slowly into new situations and experiences, and if she's been prepped ahead of time (like going to the dentist - which she thinks is awesome), she'll own it.

Their unique personalities are 100% them -- not me, not their dad, not their grandparents.  Just them.  That's pretty cool.

In your opinion, what’s the most important value(s) parents can instill in their children?
I place a high value on encouraging my kids to have independence and confidence.  Even if the first few steps are tough or scary, I want them  to know that if they try something, they might suprise themselves and realize they CAN do it after all.  Whether that's un-packing and hanging their backpacks up at the end of the school day or riding the swings at the school carnival, I want them to believe they're capable.
I want them to feel confident that they don't need their hand held all the time, that it's okay to make mistakes, and that we're proud of them for trying new things and taking on more responsibilities.

If your children could describe you in 3 words, which ones would they pick?
Perhaps I don't want to know! :) Maybe I'm safe since their vocabularies are limited at this age.  I think they'd probably tell you that I like to make signs, take pictures, and drink coffee. They'd be right.

Oh, and as for my shoes?  Work at home or not, it's not unlike me to wear my heels at the workbench while sawing wood.  After all, my husband's home all day too! Those fuzzy slippers just won't do. :)
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