The Pretty Bee

http://www.theprettybee.com/

I'm Kelly, wife, mama to two boys and the owner of Linkel Designs Jewelry. The Pretty Bee is where I post my favorite recipes, craft projects and all kinds of handmade goodness.

What advice would you give a mom who wants to be a mompreneur?

Follow your heart! If you believe in your products, and love what you do, it will show and people will be naturally attracted to your items. If you are going to sell your products online, take excellent photos with natural light. Write clear, accurate descriptions and have fun being creative. Don't let work take over all your personal time...when you work at home it can be tough to separate the two. It's important to have time that is just for your family.

What tips do you have for connecting with other mom bloggers?

Reach out to bloggers that you like by commenting on their blogs. Offer to do a guest post exchange if you feel like your style is a good fit for their blog. Of course, social media is a great way to connect as well!

How do you balance being a mom and and an entrepreneur?

It can be very tough! I try to have designated working hours...a few afternoons a week, and Saturday mornings are times when I have my husband watch the boys while I catch up. Of course it isn't always easy to keep things in balance. At Christmastime, and during other peak shopping seasons, I am busier, and we wind up ordering takeout, using paper plates, etc. Whatever it takes to get through the craziness in one piece. Family comes first, so if my baby needs me all day because he's teething, than that's what I do that day, nurse and hold my baby. I can catch up another time.

What's a great present under $30 for dads? Please recommend an item from your store or someone else's?

Kelly

If your guy loves sweets, try Whimsy & Spice on Etsy. Their homemade marshmallows and cookies are delicious and unusual. My husband loves the Pumpkin Ginger Sandwich Cookies. I purchased a variety of sweets from them last year for stocking stuffers...yum! http://www.etsy.com/shop/whimsyandspice?ref=ss_profile
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What item should moms splurge on?

Kelly

A couple of outfits that fit your post partum body right now. After you have a baby, it can be depressing to have a closet full of clothes that are too small, and it's no fun to wear maternity clothes when you're not pregnant. Buying a few cute and stylish pieces that fit NOW can really make you feel better about yourself. I'm six weeks postpartum and I just purchased a cute pair of jeans, a maxi skirt and two colorful spring tops to get me by while I lose the baby weight. And don't stress, remember, it's nine months up, nine months down. :-)
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Please share a link to a photo of a great birthday cake you made or bought.

Kelly

http://www.theprettybee.blogspot.com/2011/04/chocolate-birthday-cake.html This was THE BEST chocolate birthday cake I've ever made. It was for my husband's birthday last year and he loved it. I used gluten free flour (my son can't tolerate wheat) and also changed a few things to lower the fat content a little bit. It was still so decadent and delicious!
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What's a great toy for outdoor play that costs less than $15? Please share a photo or link if you have one.

Kelly

We love to draw with sidewalk chalk, and we also love to paint with sidewalk chalk paint. It's super easy to make, simply mix cornstarch with water until you get a nice consistency for painting, then add some food coloring! Give your child a brush and watch them paint the town!
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What's your favorite toddler bedtime book?

Kelly

Goodnight Gorilla...I love that there aren't any words. The pictures are so detailed and tell a wonderful story, and it is a great way to get your toddler involved in the story, since you really aren't "reading" it...they can tell the story, too!
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If you were giving a commencement speech, what's one piece of advice you'd give to young women who want to include motherhood in their futures?

Kelly

Keep your eyes and ears open to everything you see, do and experience in the world during this time. All the places you visit, all that you learn, and all that inspires you will shape the way that you mother your children and the way your children view the world. Practice listening and being present now, because there is no greater gift you can give than to really listen and be present for your child. Live your life - travel, learn, love, and enjoy life - take time for yourself now, follow your dreams NOW, so you can be free to help your children follow their dreams once that day comes.
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Do you use your slow cooker/crock pot even in summer? If you have a great warm-weather crock pot recipe, please share a link to it with other moms!

Kelly

I do use my crockpot once in awhile in the summer months. I have a very easy recipe for Egyptian Lentils and Rice which is great to make when the pantry is getting pretty bare. If I realize that I haven't planned anything for lunch, I can throw this together with pantry ingredients, and it is a great source of protein, and yummy, too!
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