Alt Summit Recap

by Zina

Ashmae, my partner in We Brave Women, Jackie from Jolly Holiday, and Heather from Chatbooks, and I got a little turned around from eating too many Lindt truffles in Oh Happy Day's photobooth. Photo by Smilebooth

Ashmae, my partner in We Brave Women, Jackie from Jolly Holiday, and Heather from Chatbooks, and I got a little turned around from eating too many Lindt truffles in Oh Happy Day's photobooth. Photo by Smilebooth

This past week I had the great opportunity and pleasure to attend Alt Summit, an amazing conference for bloggers, small business owners, artists, makers and entrepreneurs held in Salt Lake City (they also hold a summer conference and smaller conferences in other locations). 

It was a jam packed affair filled with lots of new and old friends, panels with some of the best in the biz, round table discussions, free advice tables (lawyers, stylists, editors oh my!), amazing inspirational keynote speakers (Lisa Congdon, Jess Lee, Susan Petersen and Dallas Clayton), amazing parties, and LOTS of swag from incredible sponsors (I'm looking at you Airbnb, The Honest Company, Lindt, JoAnn, Overstock, Freshly Picked, SQUARESPACE, BabyLit and more!). Pretty much I felt like I was trying to drink out of a firehose, a really really delicious/smart/brave firehose.

But as I've sat scratching my slightly fevered brain (literally, I must have picked up something from shaking so many hands), I've been able to gain some clarity on the really important things I learned. So in no particular order, here is my imitation firehose: 

1. Know who you are. This came up in lots of sessions on lots of topics, especially surrounding branding and identity. But it's a good one. Knowing who you are means knowing where you are headed, what you want, what you stand for, what you value, who your audience is, what your 'look' and 'feel' are, and how to communicate all this in your design, packaging, product, social media, blog, etc. 

2. Lisa Congdon said a lot of amazing things, but here are just a few quotes that have really stayed in my brain: 

  • Let go of the idea that it will all someday be perfect. It won't. 
  • Dull women always have immaculate houses. 
  • You may never feel like you have 'arrived', and that might be a good thing. 
  • Do ALL the work. 
  • The messiest situations give birth to the beautiful. 
  • Take time to do the things that will give you energy to do the work.

3. Read every email that Pinterest sends you. They have good advice yo. 

4. Find/create your community and engage in your community through liking, commenting, celebrating, sharing stories, experiences, respond to questions, etc. 

5. Only put quality content out there (photos, content, product, etc.)

6. Have a #hashtag strategy #momsstuffsalve #superfoodforskin #momsstuffmiracle (ideas? guys?)

7. Only work with partners (brands, stores, bloggers, etc.) who GET you and BELIEVE in you. Anyone else will waste your time. 

8. Think ahead! Have holiday/seasonal content and product ready to go well in advance, have a calendar. 

9. As my dad always says: Have your poop in a line. Meaning, be ready for big orders! Get your production and operations tight and ready so you aren't caught in a place where you can't meet demand. Going along with this sometimes the biggest threat to your business is growing too fast. Take time to slow down and have a solid foundation so you can grow sustainably. 

10. Find people who believe in you and get support from them. 

11. BE INTENTIONAL. Know your priorities and stick to them and stop trying to do it all. Do what you do best. 

12. And last, my friends, DALLAS CLAYTON. What a rockstar. 

  • "There's no rules"
  • Get lost (literally). Have experiences. Push yourself #beyoncetothemoon
  • Magic ahead! and find something that gives you your magic back (Spin Doctors)
  • Stand here and think about someone you love
  • You can do good things for people, but you have to push yourself
  • You can make up your job

I know a lot of this might just sound like a string of inspirational posters, and maybe it is, but man these are some helpful inspirational posters to me. I came out with a clear vision of what our next steps here at Mom's Stuff Salve will be and am so excited to get them going! Look for some big awesome things this year! (new product(s), Kickstarter, inventions)

So thanks Alt, and thanks to all the wonderful, kind, warm, generous people I met. So happy to be connected to such a caring and rad community. 

p.s. my world will never quite be the same now that I know these and these exist. 



Posted on January 28, 2015 .

Things We Love: Wool Dryer Balls

by Zina

About a year and a half ago, I read this article about felted wool dryer balls, and I was intrigued because I'm always looking for greener practices in my home and because my husband Caleb has some allergies to the fragrances in most dryer sheets. And then I started reading about the reasons you should not use dryers sheets (like this article or this one) and I was sold. I bought a set that same day. We've been using that same set of six ever since and LOVE them. They are a 100% natural way to keep laundry soft and static free, and they double as a great cat toy. 

They work because as they bounce around in the dryer with a load, they absorb a up to 30% more of the water helping clothes to dry more quickly as more air circulates through them. The wool balls help to fluff your laundry and through bouncing around, basically pummel your clothes so they are softer. Because they pull out so much water the drying time is shorter and there are fewer wrinkles. They also help keep the dryer more evenly humid as they absorb water and bounce around, which dramatically decreases static cling. Ultimately my favorite way to dry clothes is on a line (the smell! nothing better!), but currently we live in a spot where that is not possible. So for the time being, these have been a great alternative.  

So a few benefits we've seen:

  • No more chemicals and allergies.
  • Reduced drying time, which equals money in the bank and smaller carbon footprint!
  • They don't affect the absorbency of towels (dryer sheets makes fabrics less absorbent).
  • Since the initial cost of the balls I haven't spent a penny on dryer sheets.
  • And again . . . cat toys. 

This is where I purchased mine, but there a lot of great tutorials to make your own if you are so inclined! Do you use them? Or something else? I'd love to hear about it! Happy laundering!



Posted on January 16, 2015 and filed under Things We Love.

Superfood Spotlight

Recently we were chosen to be a part of Food52's Provisions shop collection of Superfoods. We love Food52 and their excellently curated Provisions for cooks and food lovers alike. 

Mom's Stuff is the ultimate SuperFood for Skin® because of it's amazing ability to not only moisturize, but nourish your skin while healing and protecting. So it's doing multiple good things for your skin at once! All with no harmful side effects, or ingredients absorbing into your system that are produced in a lab. It's all 100% from nature with 100% active goodness taking action to help your skin be it's healthiest. So get some, and consider it a leafy green smoothie for your skin each day. 

Posted on January 14, 2015 and filed under Press.