We are so excited to introduce you to September’s Mom of the Month: Tina Morton!
Tina is a good friend of Your Milk Shoppe, an official member of our MamaTribe. What can we say, we just absolutely love her!
She is one busy mama; a wife and mom of 3 boys, all under age 4! She owns a maternity consulting business that offers baby planning, concierge, bed rest support and postpartum doula services to expecting and new moms. Tina lives in St. Charles, Illinois, and serves families in Chicago and the surrounding suburbs.
We hope you enjoy getting to know this inspiring mama with a sneak peak into her love-filled life!
Your Milk Shoppe
How do you juggle being a wife, mom of 3 young children, and a small business owner?
The main reason why I decided to embark on the journey of launching my company is because I have such a huge support system around me. I have an incredibly supportive husband and family, a loyal circle of friends who always encourage me, and I have reliable yet flexible childcare that makes it all possible.
There are definitely times when I feel like I’m juggling, but most of the time I am just so grateful where this journey has taken me. I feel so passionate about what I’m doing to help mamas, that I honestly feel pure happiness running through my veins! I also absolutely love that my schedule allows me to spend a lot of quality time with my husband and boys.
What inspired you to become a maternity consultant?
The experience of becoming a mother was such a whirlwind for me. I was so incredibly overwhelmed and I just needed some guidance. I found it in friends and family’s support, which in turn transferred over to me. Once I had my second son, I found myself feeling such incredible joy helping other moms in any way; making a meal, helping them complete their baby registry, giving them general advice…you name it. After I had my third son, that feeling just intensified to the point where I couldn’t stop thinking about wanting to be that support system to mamas full time. I looked into professional training, found Baby Planner Inc. and CAPPA, and the rest is history!
Can you recall the moment when you decided to quit teaching and pursue Cloud Nine Baby Planning full-time? How did you feel?
After I gave birth to my third son I was scheduled to be on maternity leave for 9 months. When he was about 6 weeks old, I had the aforementioned feeling of relentless pull towards making a change in my life. I’ll never forget it; I was sitting on the couch with my husband and my tiny little baby, and I just looked at him and said, “I’m going to do it.” He said, “It’s now or never. Choices, chances, changes. You have to make the choice, to take a chance, to make a change.” (He’s the best, by the way) It was a go from there! By mid-summer I was so invested and deeply connected to the birth community that we determined I could resign from my teaching position (which, after 12 years, was so hard!) so I could pursue Cloud Nine full time.
What do you love most about Cloud Nine?
I love that I’ve been able to reach mamas at their rock bottom. When a mom tells me that I made a difference in their day or their mothering experience, it just impacts me to the core. It drives me to do so much more! My mission is to be a support system to every kind of mom, whether inexperienced or 4 kids in. I’ve been so blessed to have gotten the chance to embark on that mission!
Summarize your mom-mantra in 3-5 words.
Motherhood is a Sisterhood.
What woman in your life inspires you?
This a tough one, only because I am inspired by a community of women as opposed to just one! I have the most amazing network of women and mamas around me…they have absolutely shaped me into who I am today. My mother in law is the matriarch of our family. She’s about four grandmas in one and would do anything for her three boys, daughters in law, and grandkids. I absolutely admire her loyalty, dedication, and boundless energy! I have three sisters in law whom I love dearly. Each one of them inspires me by the way they mother their children, and the by the way they love my children unconditionally. My tribe of girlfriends is for sure one of the reasons why I feel so comfortable in my mama-skin…we’ve all created a space of tell-all without judgment, and on those long days this is definitely a life saver!! I’ve shared deep, rooted friendships with some of these women for over 20 years, and I’m absolutely inspired by the acceptance, love, and respect that is shared in those relationships every day.
Before becoming a mom, what area of parenting did you feel most confident about? And, were you right?
I always thought that I would be a prepared and organized parent. I got a rude awakening that parenthood is almost impossible to be perfectly prepared and organized for- even though I really thought I had all my ducks in a row! Now, there’s always that one time when you cannot find the sippy cup lid you need and the other shoe is God knows where. There’s also always the time when the toddler has a potty accident at the zoo and you forgot to pack extra shorts. At least I’ve now learned to just roll with the punches and make the best of what’s around, a.k.a. walk around the zoo in underpants. 🙂
Are you the kind of mom you thought you would be?
I would say that I am now. When my first son was born, I was a ball of fear; not the relaxed and cool mom I thought I would be. The drive home from the hospital was a life changer and the beginning of thinking the world was full of harm. I thought every car on the street was going to hit us, and I was so anxious! I worried sick about every germ and every outing…I even worried about world peace. I had never been anxious before and I had turned into a complete nutcase. Thankfully, as my kids got older I relaxed! I think toddler boys will instill a tolerance in you that is otherworldly. All those falls, head bumps and their utter fearlessness start to thicken your skin a bit!
What one word would you use to describe each of your son’s personality?
Cameron- lively; he does not walk anywhere- he RUNS. That’s just him!
Cullen- extroverted; there is not a soul at the store that won’t get a greeting from my sweet middle child.
Carson- resilient; this baby is smothered by his big brothers on a daily basis- they love him so much! He takes it with a smile and doesn’t mind a thing.
As a little girl, what were your biggest aspirations?
All I ever wanted to be and do was to become a mama. It’s literally the only thing I would ever talk about and think about when I was little. Even throughout my twenties the thought of becoming a mother preceded all others. My dreams definitely came true in my beautiful little boys. Now that I get to share my motherhood experience and get to spread that love, I cannot imagine aspiring to anything else!
What is the best part of your day?
Naptime! Just kidding! Kind of. It’s actually the morning, when each one of my sons carefully makes their way into our bed. All warm and fuzzy with sleep, just coming in to cuddle before they start their day of being destructive dinosaur hunters or cape-donning superheroes!
Describe your perfect day.
It would have to start with a full night of uninterrupted sleep (Is that even still a thing?) I would then maybe feel like getting up before the whole family does! I’d have my coffee on my porch, and then I’d be good to go. I love spending time with my whole family outdoors. My kids love to run at full speed and are outside every chance they get! A perfect day would be spent at home, playing games in our backyard and going on walks to our local park. Watching my kids play has always been one of my most favorite things to do on this planet. My perfect day is a day full of simple joys- the best, in my opinion.
What was your recharge before kids, and what is it now?
A trip shopping used to be my favorite way to recharge! I do still love to shop, but now an impromptu plan to grab a glass of wine with my best friend once the kids are in bed is where it’s at. Connecting with friends after a long couple of weeks and just being able to laugh feeds my soul!
If there is one piece of advice you can share with new mamas, what would it be?
You are number 1. Self-care is the MOST important thing to remember as a new mama, because once Mom is taken care of so is baby. You cannot give from an empty well. I think that the second we become mothers we become so selfless that we simply forget about what we need. We just cannot let ourselves fall into that state! Let go of the little things. Does it really matter if the house isn’t picked up and the kitchen isn’t clean? No. What matters are the moments you share with your baby, even if it means you didn’t get up from the couch the whole day. Everything else can wait.
To learn more about Tina’s business, please visit her website at http://www.cloudninebabyplanning.com/.