Most Friday’s, I will be featuring mom’s who are also small business owners! This is in hopes of not only raising awareness for small
businesses you may not know about, but also to encourage you if you are a mom with a small business, or interested in starting one.
(be it any kind of small business!)*
Today I would like to welcome Danika Dickson, a wife, mommy of 2, and along with other things, owner of Chic to Cheek Boutique! This first photo of Danika and her gorgeous family is courtesy of Luxe Photography, the rest you see are Danika’s own gorgeous work! 🙂
1. Tell us about yourself! (name, husband, kiddos, business name etc.)
My name is Danika, I’m a mom-wife-kinesiologist-grad student, and small business owner.
I’ve been with my high school sweetheart, Tim, for the past 13 years. Together, we have two wonderfully rambunctious little kids: Maddox, my smart, sassy, ballet-lovin’ 4 year old daughter; and, Hunter, my rough, tough, and super snuggly 2 1/2 year old son. I am an entrepreneur at heart and run two small businesses: A consulting/training company as an Exercise Rehabilitation Specialist and Pilates Trainer (my “real” job), and an online boutique store, Chic to Cheek Boutique (my “fun” job).
2. What does your typical day look like?
Everyday is different! I juggle the kids school and other activities with my work commitments, so we are all over the place. Some days it’s preschool and daycare, others it is relaxing at home and having a playdate. No matter what we have going on though, we’re always have quiet time together. I do my work when the kids are sleeping, in school or on a playdate. I have an unofficial policy to never work from home when they’re with me and I try to plan my appointments when they are already going to be away from home.
3. What is your business name (brief description of the business), your website, and how long have you been in business?
Chic to Cheek Boutique (www.chictocheek.ca) is my online store where I sell and market handmade boutique items. Everything is for either moms or babies, and lots of organic items – funky baby bedding, organic cloth diapers, natural skin care, baby slings, adorable minky blankets, crocheted hats, etc. Everything is either handcrafted, or manufactured on a small-scale locally. I carry mainly mom-brands that are produced near where I live (I’m on the south-west coast of Canada). I’m into my third year of business now. As I type this, I realize how quickly time flies!
4. What do you love most about having a small business?
I learned a ton and have met some amazing people. When you’re a one-woman show, you do everything yourself. I even made my own website to get started. Thankfully I was able to afford a better one quickly, but I still did it 🙂 Anything and everything I needed, I had to either learn it myself, or make friends and barter with someone who could. I was so thankful for other people in the industry that shared freely with me. No matter what I do with my business down the road, I have developed a pretty versatile skill-set.
5. What is the hardest part about having a small business?
Hmm, honestly? This is the hardest question for me to answer. I don’t like the assumptions people make, either about me, or what it’s like to run a business. People have made comments about how I am sooo busy and that is must be hard on my kids (and let’s be honest, some of you probably thought the same thing when you read my answer in question 1!). That drives me crazy! Yes I work hard at it, but I have learned how to be efficient with my time. So while it is busy, I don’t spend hours upon hours doing it, and I don’t neglect my kids for business. I refuse to brand myself as a WAHM (work-at-home-mom), I feel like there are so many sides to me, that I don’t like being labelled.
6. How do you balance work and being a mommy?
If you keep your priorities where they should be, I really think life will fall into place. When my online business started to really take off, I actually backed off on my marketing. I didn’t want to be too busy – I’ll save that for when my kids are both in school full-time. I make sure to spend quality time with them everyday, even if it’s just a little bit. I’m also really fortunate to have a husband that helps out around the house. I don’t know what I would do without him. If I find myself getting stressed out or overwhelmed, I know I need to slow down and do less. Sometimes that is easier said than done, but it really is my recipe for sanity 🙂
7. Any tips for someone thinking about starting a small business?
Take your time! If you really want to be successful, take the time to learn what’s involved with being in business and put together a business plan. You need to know about business licenses, insurance, websites, start up expenses, etc. No matter what you’re selling or offering, the back-end of running a business is not glamorous, it’s really helpful to know as much as possible before you get started. Basically, do your research, then get out and network!
8. Tell us something about yourself! Crazy, funny, embarrassing, etc.
I met my husband when we were 15 and working together at a fish ‘n chips restaurant on the beach. He was 2 years older than me, which was a big deal at the time. After we had been dating a couple months, I drew a picture of ‘us’ in 10 years and predicted what life would be like. We would be married with 2 kids, one boy and one girl. I packed it away shortly after and totally forgot about it. I found it in 2008 in an old box in my garage. My prediction came true!
Thank you so much Danika! Please take a moment to “like” her Chic to Cheek business page on Facebook, HERE!