Team FIND generally celebrates moms of all ages and stages on the daily. From our staff to our stock, moms are considered at nearly every turn. We love serving all demographics in our boutique, and we especially delight in offering stylish pieces for moms as well as charming pieces for their kiddos (and their homes and their spouses and their friends, yada yada yada).
To help celebrate Mother's Day this year, we tapped a few of our fav-o-rite moms to share their insights on motherhood. Learn more about these incredible mamas below then check out their Spring picks for themselves and their littles.
And if you need assistance with your own Mother's Day shopping (or not so subtle wish list), we're here. for. that. Give us a call, set up a private appointment or swing by the store when you can.
Cassie Beer is the frontwoman of band Rosalind & the Way, writing, singing and playing guitar on beautiful, poetric tracks that stir the emotions. She’s currently finishing up her MA in Professional Communication at Purdue Fort Wayne, while working as a Donor Engagement Specialist at the Community Foundation of Greater Fort Wayne. She and her husband Jason have been married for almost 13 years and have three children, Avram, Augie and Rosie.
What is your favorite thing about being a mother? The last song my band released starts with the line “what a gift to grow old,” and it’s probably one of the most heartfelt lyrics I’ve ever written. It’s so precious to watch them become their own person right before your eyes, over and over again. Getting a front row seat to my kids discovering who they are, and getting to love them through it, is the joy of my life.
What motherhood-related task would you choose to outsource forever and ever? Meal planning, forever and ever, yes and amen. While I actually do love cooking (somewhere, in the distance, my husband scoffs), the stress of having to plan for all five of us eating three times a day makes it a way less enjoyable activity for me.
Is motherhood different than you expected? From the beginning, motherhood has been nothing like I expected. Avram was born with a myriad of brain malformations, resulting in physical and intellectual disabilities. His first months were spent in the NICU and recovering from brain surgery. When milestone markers, like walking or potty training, fly by unmet, it quickly challenges the idyllic dreams you held about parenthood. Time I imagined would be spent filling out memory books and going to story time at the library suddenly became hours on the phone negotiating with insurance companies and researching seizure medications. It was very hard for me in the beginning to not equate his developmental delays with my being an inadequate mother. I struggled a lot with feeling like I wasn’t a “good mom” early on because it felt like I was the least equipped person to help him: I didn’t know anything about physical therapy or speech therapy, I certainly didn’t know anything about brain malformations or epilepsy. It seemed like everyone else was the expert on what Avram needed. Something definitely shifted in me when his little brother, Augie, was born. Watching Augie quickly meet his milestones reassured me that we are all on our own paths, at our own pace. Over time, through therapy and exposure to new conceptualizations of disability, I’ve been able to find a lot of peace about Avram’s abilities. There are still sudden, acute moments of pain and grief: when he has a prolonged seizure or faces a new behavioral challenge, or when people like him are discriminated against and abused. But the joy--undeniably, overwhelmingly--outweighs the bad. I also did not expect to enjoy their interests so much. Augie has a way of getting our whole house really excited about the most unexpected things. We went through phases of driving around town for construction sites to watch, then learning all of the world’s flags, then becoming a family that follows NASCAR. Deciding to support his interests, whatever they are, has been one of the most fun adventures I’ve ever been on. I can’t wait to see what he loves next. It’s also been so fun to have a little girl who truly, deeply, passionately loves things like unicorns and glitter and twirly dresses. She was only four pounds when she was born, so I think I expected her to be a docile soul. I could not have been more wrong. Rosie is not afraid to take charge, and she will absolutely do it in an Elsa dress and Minnie Mouse ears. She was a surprise when she came and I have a feeling she’s going to keep surprising me for a very long time.
What is one misconception you held about motherhood that has now been busted? When I was first navigating my new role as Avram’s mom, I think I felt like my job was to fix him. If I put him in the right therapy, on the right medication, under the right doctor’s care, then I was doing my job. While I do think those things are important I also realize what a misconception it was that I had to “fix” this bubbly, joyful boy instead of trying to fix a world that discriminates against and demeans people with disabilities. Of course my role is still to advocate for Avram’s best care, but I think I have shifted to seeing the importance of my role also in educating others and helping the world reimagine what accessibility and inclusion can look like. In many cases the challenge is not in his lack of ability or grit as much as it is a lack of resources, patience, and empathy. Our world has so much capacity to open up and make space for every kind of ability, and my part in making that happen is far more beneficial than trying to make him fit into one idea of what a mind and body can be.
Funniest/most embarrassing “mom-moment” you’ve ever had? I insisted on finishing my Salsa Grill before I went to the hospital to have Rosie. My water had already broken, and I was sitting on a towel in my underwear force-feeding myself tacos between contractions. Of course I waited way too long and nearly delivered her in the car.
When you need (and get) time for yourself, how/where do you spend it? I feel so fortunate to have a partner who knows how important it is for me to have time to be my own person. I know I need regular time to get lost in my music and to run, and he makes sure our schedules make that happen. Investing in the creative side of myself is undeniably one way I can help make sure I’m showing up as a whole person for my family.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received about motherhood? There was a doctor we had early in Avram’s care who looked at us and said, “Developmental milestones are guides, not rules.” The reassurance that not every kid is going to progress at the same pace gave me permission to take a deep breath and not be so hard on myself (and Avram). Each of my kids is their own, unique, wonderful person, and I want to give them the space and support to figure out who that is.
What is the best piece of advice your own mother has given to you? I don’t think my mom’s advice has come so much in quotable phrases as much as it has been shown in her actions. My mom works really hard to make sure each of my kids know she loves them: she has special dates with each of them, encourages their interests, and shows up whenever they have an activity to cheer them on. My mother in law has also welcomed me from day one as part of her family, and that has always spoken volumes to me about what it means to support your child as an adult.
If you could tell a new mother to be one thing, what would it be? Can it be two things? 1. Trust yourself, fiercely and unapologetically. 2. Find a great therapist.
Katy Atkinson owns COCO + ASH, a beautiful and welcoming full service hair salon on the southwest side of Fort Wayne. She’s a talented stylist, tending to the tresses of many on Team FIND over the years, as well as a fashionable lady to boot, with a popular Instagram account where she shares her latest finds and styling tricks. She and her husband Jacob have two spirited young girls, Tallulah and Daphne, and the family is often on the go, enjoying all the activities Fort Wayne has to offer.
What is your favorite thing about being a mother? I love seeing the joy and laughter in my kids faces. They make me so proud everyday!
What motherhood-related task would you choose to outsource forever and ever? Cleaning and doing laundry. I wish I had someone to follow my kids around and clean up after every mess. I feel like that's all I do some days!
Is motherhood different than you expected? It is a whole new level of anxiety I never expected. I now know what my mother meant when she said she still worries about me. I try to not be a helicopter mom but it's hard to not want to keep them in a bubble.
What is one misconception you held about motherhood that has now been busted? I’ll never let them sleep in my bed…I’ll never let them use electronics…I’ll never let them buy a pack of gum or a toy at the store to keep them quiet while I shop… I do them all now! Never say never until you’re a parent. You must do what you have to do for your sanity!
Has motherhood made you reassess your relationship with your own mother? Yes I feel much closer to my mom since having my kiddos. I now understand everything she did for me.
Funniest/most embarrassing “mom-moment” you’ve ever had? Jumping on a trampoline after having 2 kids. Your bladder just isn’t as strong as it once was.
When you need (and get) time for yourself, how/where do you spend it? I love going for a spa day. I try to do that once a month! It feels amazing to be pampered and to have complete silence. No phone, no interruptions!
What is the best advice you’ve ever received about motherhood? Give yourself some grace. Motherhood is hard and most of the days have messy crazy parts, but cherish the good moments.
What is the best piece of advice your own mother has given to you? Let your kids be who they are. Don’t try to dress them a certain way or change what they want to do. They will be happiest when you let them be themselves.
If you could tell a new mother one thing, what would it be? To be patient.
Monica Lopez married her high school sweetheart 11 years ago and today they have three boys, Isaac, Noah and Jonah. A few years ago, Monica started a small shop, Monica Marie Co., selling handmade goods like pacifier clips and teethers, some home decor items like pennant flags, wood bead garlands and plant hangers, and coffee mugs with quotes. Though she’s always been creative, making things with her hands and learning photography, when the pandemic began she decided to hit pause on her shop so she could focus on raising her children while also serving as their in-house teacher.
What is your favorite thing about being a mother? I would say my favorite thing about motherhood is how much I learn from my children. They teach me new things every day about myself and how to be a better mother to them.
What motherhood-related task would you choose to outsource forever and ever? Laundry. Hands down my most hated task.
Is motherhood different than you expected? Absolutely! I had this image in my head when I was pregnant with my first about how I wanted things to be and from the get-go it was thrown out the window. I never wanted to be a SAHM. Ever. Always said I would be a working mom. Now I can’t really imagine doing anything else. I’m all for doing what works for you and your family and it’s what works best for us. I also didn’t know what creative outlets it would open up for me once I became a mom. They became my muse.
What is one misconception you held about motherhood that has now been busted? That being a SAHM was easy peasy. HAHA! I’m awake from at least 6am (sometimes 5 if I decide to get my workout in early) to get my oldest ready for school, and I don’t go to bed until 11pm usually. I cook all the meals, try to stay up to date with chores, and chauffeur my kids to baseball game/practice. I mean the only time I really get to sit down is when I’m driving in the car. Packing all 3 kids up in the vehicle is it’s own version of cardio if you ask me.
Has motherhood made you reassess your relationship with your own mother? I’ve always been pretty close with my mom but once I became a mother I saw her in this new light and I finally understood how much she loved me and how hard she worked for our family. I will spend the rest of my life indebted to her for the billion ways she’s expressed her love for me.
Funniest/most embarrassing “mom-moment” you’ve ever had? First time mom at the time and I had just cleaned out the diaper bag and of course I’d forgotten to restock it with a clothing item. Isaac and I are at Cracker Barrel with my parents when he decides it’s a great time to have a blow out. I’m holding him under his arms and away from my body as I run to the restroom. I’m basically rinsing him off in the sink and feeling SUPER judged by anyone who sees me. My mom comes in the restroom with a new outfit because (thank the Lord) they sell clothes there. I’d like to say I learned my lesson from that point but I’d be lying.
When you need (and get) time for yourself, how/where do you spend it? Getting coffee always. It can be by myself or with my girlfriends but it always involves coffee. Conjure, Utopian, and Joe Taylor are my current favorites.
What is the best advice you’ve ever received about motherhood? Write it all down. Write the funny things they say or the way they say it, and all about their cute little quirks. Write down how you feel in the good and hard times like when baby just can’t sleep through the night and you feel like it will never end. It does end and it’s a nice reminder that everything is for a season.
What is the best piece of advice your own mother has given to you? My mom tells me the same thing at least once a month, usually when I’m stressed out about never having enough time to do all the things. She says the kids won’t remember their laundry being clean and put away nicely in their drawers, the floors being swept and mopped, or having a well rounded meal for dinner. They’ll remember family movie night, picnics at the park, practicing baseball in the backyard, they’ll remember sitting on your lap while reading a book, adding marshmallows AND whipped cream to their hot cocoa and a dash of sprinkles for fun. So let the laundry and the dishes sit there another day - they’re not going anywhere but these days with the boys are precious and they go faster than we think. I probably cry every time she reminds me.
If you could tell a new mother to be one thing, what would it be? I would say to view yourself through your child’s eyes. They love you because you’re you and they would never wish for you to be anything else so give yourself some grace.