A couple of weeks ago, we learned from a Boss Mom doing the biz with Usborne Books and More. This week, I was able to pull some wisdom from a second Boss Mom who has run her own business for 17 years. It started as a dream to own a bed and breakfast, but took a different turn that is still producing a large line of homemade soaps and products after all these years. Boss Mom, Amanda Goldsmith is the owner and sole operator of Mystic Creations Soaps in Washington, Iowa.
Goldsmith began her business prior to becoming a mother and had always worked outside the home as well. Just in the last year, she has transitioned to being a stay-at-home mom, while continuing her business. Goldsmith has one daughter, Lynora who is 1-year-old.
According to Goldsmith, owning your own business keeps life interesting, “I can’t pass responsibilities to anyone else. I’m the one who creates all my products from concept to customer purchase. I’m the one who makes all the signs, labels, and packaging. I do all the marketing and social media. I’m the one who does all the paperwork to make and sell bath and beauty products. Most people don’t realize that I have to be compliant with the FDA to sell sugar scrubs, body butters, etc. So I really have to make sure I’m on top of it all in order for everything to get done and get done right.”
Out of all of the products she creates, Goldsmith said that soaps are her favorite. “I love doing my soaps. I have over 50 scents in both essential oils and fragrance oils that I can create with. Add in all the fun colors and the fact that no two bars look exactly the same means each time I make a batch I fall in love all over.”
After 17 years in the business, I wondered how Goldsmith has been able to keep her creative juices flowing. “To be honest I hit up Pinterest when I’m feeling less than inspired or burnt out. Looking at all the wonderful items usually will help me with new ideas.”
We all know that life changes when you become a parent, in more ways than one. I asked Goldsmith to explain how becoming a mom has changed her work day. “I always worked a full-time job on top of running my business before becoming a mom, so I was used to only having so much time to work on my business. That hasn’t really changed. I spend the days while she’s awake with her and work while she naps or is in bed for the night. I think the biggest change is doing shows because I take her with me to most. It will continue to get challenging the older she gets because she won’t want to just sit around with mom all the time.”
Goldsmith also sees the benefits of being a business owner/mom, “I wouldn’t be able to be home with her if I didn’t have some money coming in. I’ve worked in child care in the past and while I love daycare and the opportunities it offers to children, I wanted to be home with her for the first few years. I also want to present a strong female role model; one that can be successful, in charge of her own life, and succeed at things if she puts her mind to something. Right now she loves going with me to shows and meeting people and I want to foster that and help her find her place in the world. ”
I asked Goldsmith what challenges she feels as a Boss Mom and how she copes with those stressors. “Trying to do it all. Since I’m home, I’m doing 85% of the housework plus taking care of her 12-15 hours a day, plus running my business. Balancing, making sure the laundry is done, she’s getting enough of my attention, and my business to-do list stays checked off. I try to make sure I step back from things and ask if it’s really a need to get done now or can wait if she wants to play with me. Or not feeling guilty for trying to work while she’s awake. I make sure to call in support from my partner, friends, and family when I get overwhelmed and need a break. Taking Me time with dinner out with friends or asking a family member to watch her when I have big shows so I can really focus on my business really helps me cope with everything.”
I know there are moms out there who may be playing with the idea of having a home business while caring for our little ones. Goldsmith shares her advice for those of us leaning toward the Boss Mom life. “It’s not easy,” said Goldsmith. “It is not an overnight thing. It’s taken years to get to a place that is comfortable for me. But don’t give up. Learn all you can about business before jumping in. I went to college for business which I find useful even today when dealing with aspects of running my own show. Make sure you have the support of family and friends but don’t let them talk you out of something you really want to do. It’s your life and your goal/dream.”
If you would like to check out the unique products that are available from Mystic Creations Soaps, Goldsmith will be at the following events:
Coralville Spring Arts and Crafts Show at the Marriott Hotel on April 7th. https://www.facebook.com/events/2004562689802370/
Washington Farmer’s Market will be starting up mid-May.
Mystic Creations Soaps can also be found online at the following locations: