Welcome to the first in this series of interviews with inspiring mums, in which some fantastic ladies will share their learnings, tips and insight on how they manage to find the ‘Joy in the Juggle’.
Let me introduce you to the lovely Terez Annis. With 2 boys, 2 businesses and a part time job she is certainly doing what I would call the ‘mother juggle’. Her positive attitude is refreshing and gorgeous and I especially love the ingenuity in coming up with such a cool business concept. She also has one of the most gorgeous logos I’ve ever seen.
A huge thanks to Terez for taking the time to share this with us. Here is her interview.
So, tell us a little about you and what you do.
Hi my name is Terez and I am the owner of Ladies First Yarra Valley. As well as running my small business, I also do spray tanning from home and I also work part time as a medical administrator and am a mum of two little boys. Life is busy and hectic but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I like staying busy and love all my jobs its fun juggling everything.
What inspired you to start Ladies First?
I was inspired to start Ladies First because I could see there was a market within the Yarra Valley for hens days and girls days out. I was organising so many friends hens days and events it just occurred to me maybe I should start this as a business.
My inspiration for the Yarra Valley and growing up in such a wonderful place led me to connect with business’s and start putting packages together to cater for ladies.
What do you love about what you do?
I just love helping ladies organise special events. I get great satisfaction out of organising a day/night that everyone has enjoyed and had a fun time at. It makes me smile every time I receive positive feedback from clients
What challenges have you faced along the way?
There has been many challenges along the way. Of course money is always a big issue when you start out. So I guess setting myself up and getting merchandise and my label out there has been hard. Also nutting out all the insurances I needed and finding a good broker, lawyer, accountant etc has been a challenge.
What learnings would you like to share with other mums who are also juggling motherhood and business/career?
I would just like to say if you have an idea in your mind don’t be afraid to go with it. You have to start somewhere and believe me when I say a small idea can grow into a beautiful thing. There’s always challenges to overcome when you run a business but once you get through them its not too hard after that. And just a little pitch you need a great Mentor. And I can’t recommend Lisa Staples from Hattrick communications more highly enough. Without her passion and guidance for my little idea, I am not sure Ladies First would be as successful as it is today.
I actually came up with the idea for Ladies First after I had my first son and was a little bored on Maternity leave lol. It can be difficult to juggle paperwork especially and the kids on certain days. And of course I give a lot of my own time on weekends for my events. But I guess I way up the little extra money I am making is contributing to there needs and wants that we would otherwise probably not be able to afford. But in saying that my kids always come first and if I am having a bad day with them and clients are trying to contact me. I find clients are always very understanding when I say now is not a great time lol.
You are juggling a whole lot with your work, businesses and family. I would love to know, how do you manage to find the joy in the juggle?
Lol I know it’s certainly a juggle. And I just signed up to do a cert 4 in marketing yesterday. So study load on top of it all (I’m insane). I suppose my passion to keep furthering myself personally as well as financially for my family. I also like to keep busy. I never like to sit still. I suppose a bit of healthy stress keeps it a little bit exciting and challenging all at the same time.
And I suppose in terms of joy because it’s all fairly new to me within business terms. It’s exciting and I love the chase of the thrill at the end. And I’ve never wanted to be one of those boring mums. I want to keep living for me a bit while I still can.
In what ways do you ensure your own self-care and prevent burnout?
I must admit in the beginning I used to burn myself out all the time and be constantly sick and tired- it was all a struggle. But not that I am pitching this to anyone but I have been off processed sugar for almost 6 months now and I feel like a new women. I never get that burn out feeling anymore. Of course I get tired like normal people but I have found I have more energy and my head is just so clear.
In what ways do you maintain your connection with your partner?
I include my business with my partner he has a lot of input in my advertising. He also drives buses on occasion for my winery tours which is great because his enthusiasm and passion really shines through to the clients. Otherwise we just try to make time for ourselves once a month with a movie or a dinner date without the kids. We have come to realize its important to have time together and appreciate each other more now days. The kids are our world but there has to be time for us too.
How supportive have your friends and family been; and how important has that been for you and your success?
My family has been fantastic, they are all so supportive and proud of the way my business has grown. And so many of our friends have been so supportive and helpful with spreading the word about Ladies First. I have received my best ideas and advice form some friends.
What does the future hold for you, your family and/or your business?
I am hoping the future is a bright one for me and my family. I ultimately would love to stop working my part time job and be solely focused on Ladies First. So I guess in order to do that I need Ladies First to take off a lot more. My dream would be to have my own office set up with a few receptionists to help out with the admin side of things and really have Ladies First as a big brand name in Victoria if not the Yarra Valley. So I guess I will just keep plotting away at what I am doing and keep on taking advice and help wherever I can get it to grow Ladies First Yarra Valley.