Motherhood + Chasing Her Dreams – All Oil Everything

Photo credit: Kelsey Adrienne Photography

Puffs of lavender perfume the air as the Gonzalez family winds down for the evening in mom and dad’s comfy bed. The two youngest enjoy this time, squealing and squirming as they receive oil massages on their little toes, an extra measure to ensure a great night’s sleep. Sleep is essential for this active family of 6 and DeAnna, owner of All Oil Everything, has perfected the bedtime routine with sleepy time oil and monster spray.

While her family is tucked in for the night, DeAnna heads to her home office to begin work on her small business. Her social media presence coupled with her small batch, high quality products makes her one busy woman.

Onlookers can quickly see it must take patience and a fantastically organized mama to run her busy life. DeAnna has her act together and was gracious enough to interview with me as I attempt to find the secret to her time management skills and intentional living.

Her Family

Tell me about your current family, work and business life.

I am a full time working wife and mom of four. My oldest is away at college, my middle is my step daughter who is with us half the time and my two littles are busy with kindergarten and Montessori preschool.

My husband often travels for work and we have become really successful managers of our time and schedules. I have worked for all of my adult life, especially because I had my first daughter so young.

27DE523B-2135-41AF-AC3A-B6D6B4E52EA8What values are most important to you?

My family always comes first and I value the time I have with them. Everything else comes after that. Working is just a means to an end and definitely does not define who I am. I am a wife and mother first.

 How do you juggle family life, full-time work, a small business and your social life?

Work life….

Each day is different and a fun challenge to manage. I work early mornings so that I can be off work in time to pick up my kids from school. The special hour or two after we’re home is an amazing bonding time and I am especially grateful to have a job that allows me the flexibility in my schedule.

Small business…

I work on orders while making and prepping dinner or else it waits until the kids are in bed.

Social life…

Friends and family are very important to us and we have friends over at least a few times per week. Some of them sit in my office with me while I work on my business or they come over to distract the kiddos. I love my friends because they know just how and when I need the support.

Family life…

Weekends are reserved for family time, sports activities and parties! We love throwing parties and going out/being adults when we can. It is important to my husband and I to also have time for us due to our busy lifestyle.

How do you handle days or weeks where you feel overworked and stretched thin?

When I’m feeling overworked or stretched thin the first thing I do is clear my schedule. At least a day or two. I tend to pack in my days and weeks so having a day of “nothing” is a huge stress reliever. I’ll use that day for whatever I need: Catch up on orders, laundry or my DVR.

I allow myself to do what I need to get back to zen. I enjoy a “self-care day” quite regularly. These are days that I don’t go to work, enjoy breakfast with my children, take them to school and spend the rest of the time doing whatever I want.

What is your favorite way to refresh and renew yourself for another busy week?

I am a huge fan of journaling, indoor cycling, getting my nails done, shopping alone, decluttering my house and watching reality tv. I really value quiet and not “having to do” anything.

Renewal can also be time spent with friends, enjoying food or wine and laughing our butts off.

How do you stay organized with your home life and small business?

I write massive to do lists! I am a big fan of the makers lists from House of Hays, created by my bff Vicky Hays. I also set timers to keep me on track and alarms to remind me when to post social media or to stay on topic with my audience.

I have just started using spreadsheets to organize the back end of my business, thanks to Tameeka of Savvynester 😉 My husband and I sync up with our digital calendars and iphones!

What is your best piece of advice for parents trying to keep a busy schedule while staying present for their kids?

My best advice for busy parents is to SLOW DOWN. Take the time to listen and really respond to your children. In the end, your children will remember the time you spent with them. They don’t know about deadlines, have-to-dos and all that comes along with being an adult and they shouldn’t have to know about it until they are grown up.

You are their biggest and best role model so show them what a parent is supposed to be by taking care of yourself, staying balanced and loving your child through intentional actions and words.

4DCEB328-695B-46B2-B1A3-E592B6685F91 Your family loves to express themselves through their clothing and personal style, including your personal line of All oil everything clothing. How do you keep up with the high demands of laundry and messes in general on such a tight schedule?

Sunday is my typical laundry & “get ready for the week” day – I also like to preset loads of laundry before I leave for work – I can delay my washer up to 8 hours so all I have to do is rotate my wash when I get home!

As far as folding and putting away, I usually dedicate time during the kids’ last tv show of the night. It’s our settle down time and a perfect way to spend time with the kids while getting things done. I try to force myself to put everything away while they brush their teeth and get ready for bed but it doesn’t always happen.

I find that the sooner I put it away the better. Like right now, I have a basket full of clothes that have been sitting for a couple days! Last Sunday I delegated laundry to my husband and he is GOOD at getting it done so I’m thankful for that!

Her Business

What inspired you to start All Oil Everything?

I started using essential oils after my son was born premature. I needed a way to be proactive and protect my family in a simple and convenient way. I love creating recipes and am impressed by the numerous benefits each essential oil has.

I began making & sharing them with my friends and family. Some of them where eager to learn and create with me while others just didn’t have the time or energy but were still excited to get started with oils.

My passion is ultimately to help others and so I created my line with the idea that anyone could easily integrate the power of oils in their daily lives. My goal is to get them in your hands so you can have your own experiences, discoveries and relief.

For those who follow you on Instagram, it is very apparent that your children are welcome in your workspace. How do you keep productive and keep frustration to a minimum when you have “little helpers”?

I allow my kids to “work” with me – I encourage them to be creative and create at the same time as I do!

When I do need some “heads down” time I close my office door, set a timer and tell them I’ll be out as soon as I’m done focusing. I am their biggest example – it is important to stick to my word and set boundaries about when I need time to get things done and then stick to that allotted time.

My husband helps with distraction when I am really under a time crunch!

What are you next big plans for your small business, All Oil Everything and where can we check out your brand?

I am working on expanding my online presence by adding new products, converting my subscription service to a more user friendly platform and offering many more products on Amazon! My website is www.alloileverything.com

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DeAnna’s story is inspiring and many in the small business community are so thankful for her contribution!

DeAnna is the most ambitious person I know, I don’t know anyone else who can successfully manage about 47 different social media groups.

She is someone you can depend on to give truthful feedback, veer you in the right direction and help you stay the course. She is someone I consider to be a mentor and leader.” – Vicky

Thank you, DeAnna for providing a perspective of true intentional living, dream chasing and how you stay organized along the way!

Each of us has a story to tell and a passion to share. Comment below your favorite intentional family moment or a way your family stays organized!

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Looking for help with organizing your household? Check out these planners for home, finance and small business organization!

 

My system for never making a late bill payment.

I must admit, for a good portion of my bill paying life, I stunk at keeping track of it all. I would get so frustrated with a company when one day late would cost me more and more money, sometimes even taking my precious deposit money away. One day, I had enough and a new system was born. I have been fine tuning it for years but I must say, no late payments have been made since its implementation.

What is my secret?
I have to warn you, each step must be performed each month in order to keep your bills in check and timely. Otherwise, things creep up on you. One bill doubles in size and your whole system is thrown for a loop. What is my step by step system?

Tracking each bill
I use an Excel spreadsheet to track all of my bills so I don’t waste time recalculating totals as I try to put together my list of bills.

I keep track of EVERY SINGLE BILL. That measly Netflix bill or a monthly subscription has to be tracked in order to see what you are even working with. Begin by listing all of your bills.

  • Housing
  • Utilities
  • Health insurance
  • Car loans
  • Car insurance
  • Credit card payments
  • Phones
  • Internet
  • Subscriptions
  • Cable/dish/Netflix
  • Student loans
  • Memberships
  • Monthly medical payments
  • Anything else that is a monthly bill

These are your non-negotiable payments. They expect payment each and every month, no exceptions.

Next, list beside them, their due dates and due amounts. Try to put them in order from earliest due date to latest in the month. This will give you a rough idea of what payments should be made first. If you are behind on your bills, start another column for back payments that need to be made. You must pay this off before you can start making “on time” payments. It is still considered late if you are always trying to catch up.

Do a final tally on what your bills are costing you each month. This number may surprise you and that brings us to the next point.

Analyze each bill
Here is one of the harder parts that takes some real motivation to do. That is, cutting bills where you need to in order to make ends meet. If you can’t live off of what is left over after paying your monthly bills, cuts must be made to get on track.

You have two choices. You can cut or decrease services or you can call and negotiate.

Many times you can get an introductory rate on things like internet and phones. You may even want to switch services to a more reasonably priced company. Some companies will even drop their rate to match the competition so you can keep your current service. Take the time, make the calls.

If you decide you need to cut services to make ends meet, look at non-essentials first. This would be memberships and subscriptions. You might also be surprised how many memberships you are paying for monthly that you never use. Like that gym membership that hasn’t been used since the beginning of the year.

If drastic measures must be taken to get things back in alignment, find options that are going to give you the most bang for your buck. Maybe it is disconnecting your landline, going without internet and a smart phone. Whatever the situation, these changes must be made to get on track.

Pay your bills first
I never spend out of my bank account before figuring out what bills must be paid. My bills take priority and I can easily go down the line and pay my bills biweekly with my online bill pay account. My bills are handled by my bank so I have records and confirmation numbers that things have been paid. Plus, it takes me 5 minutes total to put in my payment amounts for each bill and hit “pay now”.

Once I have decided what bills need to be paid, I total up what they will cost. I keep that number with me so when I want to check my bank account, I can easily subtract that total from the amount in the account. That way, I am never confused on how much spending money I actually have and avoid the headache of overdraft fees.

The bill pay puzzle
I like to think of my bills as a fun little puzzle. Biweekly, I decide what bills I can pay with my latest paycheck. These are planned in advance so I can save a portion of each paycheck for making payments. Then, I pay what bills are due first until I run out of bill money. If I have any money left over, I will either pay a small bill that is due at the end of the month or put that money aside for the next time I need to pay bills.

This is usually a puzzle for me because my husband receives irregular paychecks. Some weeks I have to make sure I have enough living money to take it two weeks and sometimes I can go ahead and wipe out multiple bills at once. I can usually pay my bills weeks ahead by being creative with how I spend my money.

I plan ahead
This is so crucial! I like to plan my bill pay money 2 months at a time so I can plan ahead and stay on track. Sometimes what is going on the next month would leave you broke and push your bills back until they are late again. This doesn’t happen when you foresee what is going to happen and set money aside to combat what the next month will bring.

For instance, since my husband is self employed he is not paid for vacation days or holidays. I make sure to take this in to account when estimating how much money I will have available the next month. I stay aware and the missed money is not a big deal because I took the opportunity to plan ahead.

Tax refund season
For those who receive a refund each year, do not miss out on this opportunity! Pay off any overdue bills, wipe out any credit card debt or loans. This will take the burden of bill pay down tremendously and you will thank me later! Each year, we choose to pay off something or if we have no debts, we save the money for something we really need or to save for a rainy day.

By starting to pay off some debts, you can open up the opportunity to save more money and give your family even more financial security. Bill pay doesn’t have to be overwhelming each month. Work to get ahead and things will begin to get easier.

My secret revealed
So what was my big secret? Being aware. Staying current and on top of your bills. Burying your head in the sand will not keep life from happening. So start digging in to your finances so you can see the opportunities more than you feel the challenges.

Available in my Etsy shop, is the EXACT spreadsheet I use to keep my finances on track EVERY SINGLE MONTH.
CLICK HERE TO CHECK IT OUT!

Wasting time is killing your joy!

When I feel overwhelmed and out of touch, I like to remember that I have the same amount of hours in a day as Beyoncé. Now, that doesn’t mean that Beyonce’s life doesn’t include feelings of frustration or strain on her time.

Each of us has 24 hours a day. No more, no less but the biggest difference is how we choose to use it.

When we waste time, we are stealing those minutes, hours and days away from the things we find important. We may say how much we wish we had time to visit with family, host a dinner party or go camping at our favorite national park. You do have the time, it requires preparation and planning to open up your schedule for those fun activities.

I am going to share with you possible time wasters that may have you trapped! We will talk about WHY we engage in time wasters that honestly do not add value to our lives. Then, I will help you fight back and remove time wasters from your schedule.

Terrible Time Wasters:

  • You guessed it, personal SOCIAL MEDIA! You have no obligation for checking your personal social media regularly.
  • Over texting during the day. Save that conversation for the dinner table or over a cup of coffee!
  • Obligations you just don’t enjoy and don’t have to do.
  • Keeping up on every TV series just to have something to talk about with friends/coworkers.
  • Complaining about your life.

Why we waste time:

We all need an outlet to get our minds off of the every day matters of life. That may mean popping on Instagram 10 times a day, texting a best friend something funny you heard or venting in person or on a message board about how hard life can be.

Each example may APPEAR to connect us with those around us but it just isn’t so. We are robbing ourselves of the joy of pure human interaction.

How and why to stop:

We need to stop! Use those 10 minutes x 10, 20, 30 times a day to plan, prepare and accomplish more so you can live for the things you hope for. It may not feel like a big time waster in the moment but when we each have a limited amount of hours in our day, each minute counts.

The next time you reach for your phone, tablet or computer to catch up on social media or message boards, create a list for the future. A list on what places you want to visit, who you want to have over for dinner, what family you want to see this year or who you haven’t had coffee with in a while. Then, the next time you get the urge to waste time, create a plan for how you will accomplish your wish! Set out the step it will take to make it happen. Then, start putting those wheels in motion.

Before you know it, you will be living the life you always dreamed you would!

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Change your life in 20 minutes a day!

Do you feel like a slave to your home? Constantly cleaning, paying bills and making appointments?

When you finally get a day to yourself, does your phone beep incessantly because life just cannot move on without you taking care of everything?

IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY. I promise, you are allowed to take time for yourself and your world doesn’t have to come to a screeching halt!

20 minutes a day
A manageable amount of time to get your life together while still taking care of your day to day. Why is it so life changing? Life needs direction or it will over run you in a heartbeat. Each step you take is another step closer to having a plan in place. You will gain peace and more time for yourself, I guarantee it!

Remembering it all
Your very first task is to implement a planner in your life. I don’t care if it is a family binder, the calendar you have on your phone or a paper planner. You need a space to keep your appointments, projects, deadlines, special events and thoughts, in order.

No more surprise events that have you running to the mall, Looking for a dress the night before. Write every appointment down, there on the spot. Don’t leave remembering an event, 3 months from now, up to your brain to remember. It has a million other things to do!

Your 20 minute challenge
What area of your life is weighing you down the most? Is it finances, constant errands to run, a busy schedule or a disorganized home? Find your biggest pain point and only focus on that issue during your daily 20 minutes.

Start here – Ideas
Personally, I use to hate cooking. I would dread when someone asks, what’s for dinner. I was never prepared and I never had the ingredients for meals I would actually want to eat. Then, I found meal planning and it has changed my life! I spend 20 minutes every 2 weeks coming up with a meal plan that I KNOW my family will love. I shop for the ingredients and dinner is on the table every night (no more take out!). A big win for my family because I care about their health and hate spending $30 on Chinese or pizza delivery.

Paying bills can overtake your life! Stop giving bills more than 20 minutes of your attention each month. Online bill pay changed my life and I don’t know what I would do without it. No more calling to pay with a debit card or sending in a paper check that could take 10+ days to process. I set up all of my accounts with my online bill pay account through my bank. Now it takes less than 5 minutes to schedule every single bill. I don’t have to think about it again until the next month!

Every house is messy at times, especially with children. The trick is to stay organized and declutter often, to keep things manageable. Each room, closet, drawer and cubby hole should have a purpose and everything needs a home. Start by picking a small area that needs organized in your home. A hall closet is a great starting point and take 20 minutes to clean it out and create intentional space for each item. Get rid of things that haven’t been used in months. If it isn’t useful regularly to your family or if it doesn’t bring you joy, it has to go. Do this with each room of your home and things will stay cleaner, you will know where everything is and you can relax!

Are you constantly on the run, going from appointment to appointment? It is time to take control of your schedule and set limits. There is only so much time in a day and it should be used wisely. Put together a family schedule that shows every single event going on for the month. Set a limit on the number of activities allowed per day and schedule accordingly. You will have to say no to the occasional event but it will allow you to see what appointments are adding value to your life and which ones are just sucking up your time.

Let’s go!
Are you ready to get started? It will be the best way to spend that 20 minutes of your day and you will be so glad you did! An organized life allows you to plan ahead and choose how you want to spend each day. Work hard and I promise you will begin to feel the effects of an organized life.