This week’s inspiring mum in my 5 Minutes With series is Laura Smith. A busy mum to 4, Laura worked in sales for a number of years before discovering her artistic flair. She creates & designs bespoke framed prints with added bling! Read all about Laura & her business, Lola S – Made to Sparkle below …
Tell me about Laura, the Mum
Laura the mum is much less patient than Laura the person! I could spend all day picking the right font for a print but 5 mins of Peppa Pig and my capability for patience is dwindling faster than you can say mummy pig!
All 4 of my kids are completely different – I suppose at 12, 7, 1.5 and 11 weeks you would expect that! But I mean personality wise. One is gentle soul, one is a wild child, one loves cuddles and one is just so content with everything! I like to think that each one of them represents a part of me, although my wild child is much more hidden these days!!
Laura the mum looks forward to the day when she doesn’t have to listen to the gurney voice anymore but at the same time dreads the silence that will bring. She’s stuck between wanting to freeze time and fast forward all at once, just so she can see what their achievements, failures and everything in between are going to be.
Tell me a little about your work history and current business?
With a degree in English and History, then 10 years experience as a Sales Negotiator for an award winning estate agency in Scotland, I never thought I’d actually end up doing something artistic – especially when I can’t even doodle!!!
However, put me in front of a computer and all the ideas that I have in my head, that before I couldn’t convey onto paper (see doodle comment) suddenly work! I love nothing more than seeing a message pop up in my inbox asking me if I could make something for a wedding present, birthday, anniversary or just because (those are my favourite ones!). A few messages back and forth where I get my brief for the piece together and off I go into my happy place, putting it all together!
There is no better feeling in my business than having a client come back and tell me they just can’t pick a favourite. I never make just one – one idea often leads into another and one style doesn’t always suit. No two days are the same, but most of my work is done when the two wee ones are asleep, or when my husband gets home from work in the afternoon. I wouldn’t change any of it!
If you were a sandwich, what would you be & why?
I love sandwiches!!! I even worked in a sandwich bar during my uni days lol. Oh this is a tough one!! I think I’d have to be spicy chicken, mayo, rocket, smoked cheese and vine tomatoes, all pulled together inside 2 thick slices of lightly toasted homemade bread!
Why? – Rocket and vine tomatoes because I’m a bit posh when it comes to my salad! Smoked cheese because I’m all about finding the balance and this compliments the spicy chicken perfectly. Spicy chicken because, well why have plain when you can have spicy?!?! And finally lightly toasted homemade bread, because home is to me is being surrounded by the familiar, a bit frazzled round the edges but soft, warm and welcoming in the middle!
Lilies or peonies. My husband is pretty good at surprising me with a bouquet here and there, and never when its expected!
Your favourite traits in a person are …
Honesty, a sense of humour, ambition, compassion and loyalty.
What makes you angry?
Lies! I’d much rather you told me the truth and dealt with any consequences because often the result of the lie is much worse.
Tell me about something new that you are learning right now?
As a long time VIP user of Canva, I was asked by them a few months back to test the beta version of Canva 2 which is now being rolled out across the board. I was recently contacted again and asked to do the same with the updates to their mobile app. It’s been a great learning experience!! And I’m happy to say that changes I’ve been crying out for on the app will be coming soon!
What is the craziest thing you have ever done?
Fallen in love with someone I met on Facebook!
What are your top 5 most used apps on your phone?
Canva, Picsart, Spark Post, Facebook and Instagram
Work best on your own or in a team?
I like to work on my own surrounded by a team which is why as a self employed work from home mum, Mum’s at Work has been a lifesaver for me. I still get to work on my own but now I just feel like I’m surrounded by a team.
When have you been most satisfied in your life?
Right now! My family is complete, my business is growing and I’m ready to get me back again after being pregnant me forEVER!!! Ask me that question again after a few PT sessions though…
Who is your greatest role model & why?
My mum. A Cliche I know but it’s the truth. No matter what’s going on with her life she is always, and has always been, there for me and my sister, and now all 6 of her grandkids. She always see light at the end of tunnel and has taught me life is much easier when she see the glass as half full instead of half empty.
What sound do you love & why?
Laughter, especially my kids and my husband’s. Why? Because them being happy is the best thing I could wish for – even if they do drive me to distraction most days!
Which celebrity do you get mistaken for?
I’d love to say Pink but in reality it’s more Claire from steps! It’s the hair!!! Lol.
What was the last experience that made you a stronger person?
Maybe not the last experience, but the experience that made me stronger than I ever dreamed possible, was becoming a single mum when my eldest child was only 6 months old. We would be here all day if I went into it in detail, but I learned that I can survive things I thought would break me, I CAN do it all on my own (Even flat pack furniture) I didn’t need to run home to my family and I don’t NEED anyone else to be happy. I am me and I don’t ever need to change that for anybody.