Saturday, November 30, 2013

Shop Small!

Do you know what shopping local means to our community? Local business; employ local people, pay local taxes and improve the local economy. 

In recent years I have seen a huge decline in locally owned, specialty retail shops and this is a trend I would love to see change! As I sit here (planning my next big thing for Everyday Baby), I am reminded of the wonderful, loyal customers that have walked through these doors. We are so very very thankful for you!

However, there is a sad and dangerous downside to owning your own business and I'd like to tell you about it:

(i'm about to get vulnerable so please, please bear with me)

We have taken a chance on opening a business that we felt our community needed. Providing love, support and resources for new, expecting and veteran mamas has been my dream. I am living it at this moment.


It breaks my heart when I know that I have spent hours - many times past business hours - teaching a new Mama how to use a ring sling or teaching them how to cloth, only to have them post on FB the new sling or diaper they purchased on Amazon/Target/Zulily for a few dollars less.

Everyday someone comes in and says "it's so great to see this in person" and it is. When I was beginning to cloth diaper Ella I can't tell you how many diapers I ordered, some were great and others sucked. Had I seen the bad ones in person I would have never purchased them. There was no place for me to go and buy the Sakura Bloom ring sling AND have someone show me how to use it.

While we hear the comment about seeing things "in-person" a lot, not everyone who makes that comment actually shops from us. Some will buy a few, then "shop" online. There is a term for this and it's called "show rooming." Many locally-owned businesses have shut their doors because of this very reason. People come in, touch and feel the product, then go home and order it from of Amazon or somewhere else they get a "better deal.''  Brick & Mortar stores are frequently "show-roomed" for big online giants like Amazon. Show-rooming is expensive to be the victim of (yes, we are victims). We pay wages, rent, utilities, insurance, taxes etc. to be able to show you our products. These costs are covered when WE make the sale. When the sale goes to giants stores like Amazon or Target, WE lose money.

Keeping Everyday Baby open is a daily challenge but I believe in what we are doing and thankfully we have wonderful, loyal customers that have kept Everyday Baby the amazing resource that it is, we employ mothers and carry products that allow mothers to adopt/foster/stay home with their babe. And we rely on those sales to keep our doors open. We may be a tad more expensive because we don't have the bulk buying potential like some of the giants (ever wonder why we are out of certain products?). But what I do offer, is customer service. I am truly passionate about seeing every baby cloth diapered, every mother successfully breastfeeding, teething babies soothed and MOST importantly every Mama supported on her journey. While I want to make sales, I also want to make sure that what you buy is what you NEED for your family. I want you to go home with confidence on how to use that baby carrier, feeling secure in your breastfeeding efforts and knowing how to wash your cloth.

Do you think that Target or Amazon give a hoot about your breastfeeding success? Hell, they'll sell you formula instead (it's more lucrative for them anyway.) Amazon is detrimental to small business'!

So the moral of the story is: buy where you touch. If you want to keep seeing things in person and you want to get involved with all of our awesome classes, support those of us who have taken the risk and invested our time, money and resources into a business and buy from them when you go in to see items you wish to purchase.

Bottom Line: I will continue to do everything in my power to earn your business. Unlike a giant retailer, it's my business to see that EVERY client is satisfied, confident, and supported in their purchase. Your support keeps our doors open for new Mamas everyday.

For those of you who have shopped with us - or plan to shop with us - my family and I would like to thank you. You are TRULY shopping local. 

Thank you!

The Axness Family

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Rain, Rain Don't Go Away..

This is what Saturday looked like for us! Daddy was working so Ella Bird and I spent some quality time together. We drank some carrot//apple juice, ate some warm sweet potatoes and danced around the store. 

I'm excited about my lactation course next month BUT it's an hour away AND all day long. So technically I will be gone for a week! So sad...I'm going to miss my little lady. I've never been away from her like this. We'll see how it goes. She'll be with her Daddy!


Monday, November 4, 2013

What you need to know about baltic amber...

I've been wanting to do a follow-up on the post that I wrote over a YEAR ago (time flies). You can check it out here. So much has changed since I was just a Mama writing about I feel like I have a bit more insight, experience and knowledge. So with that being said, I wanted to write about something that is important and that I see ALL the time.

Fake amber.

I know, right?! Seems so weird that anyone would want to trick people...but...they do.

Fake Baltic can be made from:

Fenolic Resins

Since I opened Everyday Baby in March of this year, I have seen it all. It really upsets me when a Mama comes in frazzled, tired, and wondering why amber isn't working for her baby.

I figured out a few ways to spot the difference between real Baltic Amber and fakes:

.Smell/Burn Test this is said to be the most reliable test. If you hold a flame to the amber necklace, it SHOULD give off a pleasant “pine-tree resin” smell if it is genuine. If it is a fake, it will either melt or give off a burnt plastic smell. If it is a glass fake, it will smell like nothing.

.Rub Test is similar to the smell/burn test above, except you don’t use a flame to heat the Baltic stones, you use the heat from your hands. Simply rub the stones in your hand to see if they release that “pine-tree resin” smell. This test may be a little more difficult to perform. 

.Hot Needle Test is another effective test that involves using a hot needle to once again evoke the “pine-tree resin” smell. Simply place a hot needle into an already drilled hole into the amber and see what happens. Obviously if you stick the needle into plastic or glass there will be no smell, and possible melting. Please be advised that this method may leave a slight burn mark where the needle was placed. Also note that the clasps are made of plastic and will burn if you stick the needle into those. 

.Salt Water Test is another easy way to test and see if your Amber is real. Amber will float in salt water, be sure there is not metal that would weigh the necklace down and make it sink. Please note that Copal also floats too, so while your necklace might not be glass, this test is not totally foolproof. Use 1 part salt to 2 parts water and drop the necklace into it. Hopefully it floats! 

How to avoid fakes:

Purchase from a reliable or reputable source.
Test your amber
Look for 100% Guarantee on the necklaces
If it's cheap-it ain't REAL 
Amber does not melt
Amber has a sweet pine-tree type smell when burned. 

**Don't burn over a direct flame, it will leave a black spot. I would advise you try to hold the necklace over a heat source that doesn’t involve a flame such as an electric stove. This way the smell can still resonate without harming your necklace. 


Saturday, November 2, 2013

Dear Bird,

This morning your Dad and I laid in bed looking at old photos of you. It's amazing how much you've changed over the last year. As I was looking at the photos I couldn't help but imagine what it will be like when you are 5 years older or 10 years older. If you've changed this much over a year I can't imagine what it's going to be like in 10.

I hope that I'm a good Mama. 

You can do all of the studying, verifying and learning that you want never feels quite good enough. I hope that you know that everyday I wake-up and wonder, "how I can benefit my bird". Whether it's feeding you something wholesome, stimulating your brain in some new way, I think about it. When you have a baby, I'm sure you'll understand.

If you choose motherhood in your future I hope you will think of me. When you're having these same thoughts..think of me. We can share this.

If motherhood isn't in your future I hope that whatever you put your hand to, you will wonder how to make it better. Never stop progressing my love. Always move forward and when it's time to rest, rest well.

Remember this- Act like a lady, think like a man and work like a boss.

My deepest love,