One of the first things I did when I found out I was pregnant was look at cute onesies to buy. I mean that’s the first thing on everyone’s mind when they find out they are responsible for another human being, right? So, while I was on the hunt for cute and unique clothes for my little one, I landed on this “No Hablo” shirt by TrulySanctuary on Etsy. Turns out, they also make clothing for big kids, like me!
After I did some light, innocent internet stalking, I found out that they were Beth and Ron Remsberg, a husband and wife team who were raising their two children in Nashville, TN. Literally, they are a mom and pop shop. Instantly, I felt a connection with their style and their story and I wanted to learn more. I stalked them on every social media site I could, just to gain a little insight into their world. I was in awe of the fact that they could work together in such a small space and I loved that they included their children with everything they did.
Beth, 34, was born and raised in Sacramento and left in 2005, when she was 25 years old. From there, she lived in Idaho, Germany, Florida and Costa Rica before she settled in Nashville last July, where she plans to stay and raise her kids. She was working at the Bavarian Alps when she found out she was pregnant with her first baby, Truly.
I was working at a ski resort in the Bavarian Alps having the absolute time of my life…I broke up with my fun YOUNGER boyfriend whom I was seeing over there and 3 days later I found out I was pregnant with my daughter Truly…EVERYTHING CHANGED!!! Up until that point I was perfectly content with little responsibility, no money and a carefree life in the alps…I was scared and felt so alone. I moved back to the States and actually met Ron (32) my current husband and Truly’s Adoptive father while I was pregnant. When Truly was tiny I became pregnant again (we jokingly blame our strict Christian upbringings for not understanding where babies come from)…Normandy was born just 13 months after Truly. Peter, Truly’s biological dad actually joined in on the fun and moved in with us when Truly was 2 and Normandy was 1…we have all been sharing parenting responsibilities since…the girls don’t remember a time before Peter was around…We strongly believe in the power of love and forgiveness and wish more kids were as lucky as ours!
When Ron and Beth’s car broke down and they couldn’t afford to get it repaired, they decided to go a different route, and live without the car. Beth says that the kids aren’t bothered by the lack of a vehicle, but do request a taxi if they get tired. They are hoping to get a Nissan Leaf down the road so their kids can participate in more stuff and they can attend festivals and events in Nashville.
Beth and Ron don’t have any employees so they do all the work on their own – with the occasional help from Ron’s mom and their friends during the holiday season – and they are hoping to grab an intern from one of the local colleges. But for now, they are digging the flexibility.
I love making my own schedule, in ugly sweatpants I might add. I love that we don’t have to cram everything into the same crazy weekend as everyone else. We can make appointments whenever, go grocery shopping on Wednesday morning. I don’t have to feel guilty for calling in sick. We also lived in Costa Rica for 6 Months and were able to do everything remotely. Our daughter Normandy was born with kidney issues and there have been times we have had to basically live in the hospital…I love that she was never alone…I can always be with her.
While working from home can be flexible and super relaxing, it can be tricky to separate “mom time” from “business time” (trust me, I can attest to this). Beth agreed that this is the most challenging part of working from home. Doing both can teach you to accept that not everything will go they way you expected, and it can teach you how little sleep one can survive on.
It can be confusing to go from play to work…and there is a big reason most people are prohibited from bringing their 4 year olds to work. I am a perfectionist and stink at multitasking, so it is in my nature to put my full attention toward something until I get it just right…simultaneously running a business and raising children has stretched me as far as this goes. I have learned to accept less than perfect, accept mistakes, ask for help and ask for forgiveness from my family and customers when there just isn’t enough time in the day. There have been several occasions where we pull all nighters to meet a deadline because our kids needed us full-time.
Now if your reaction was the same as mine when you saw that they work together, you would understand what a crazy concept it would be to work with your boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife/whathaveyou. Anyone who has spent five minutes with me knows that I am beyond crazy for my boyfriend, but we both know that we could never work together. So, how do they do it?
We value our business because it has afforded us so much flexibility and family time and we know it requires both of us remaining on the same team, working toward a common goal to keep it going. Egos take a back seat. We aren’t stubborn just for the sake of being right when it comes to the business. Our working place is a safe place where we can bounce creative ideas off one another without feeling the least bit of shame or embarrassment. In marriage people tend to play devil’s advocate and are quick to criticize and immediately trouble shoot their spouses “great” idea. Within our business we listen to one another. We let wacky ideas flow. We allow time to tell if something is too big to come to fruition instead of immediately listing all the reasons a new idea will surely fail. Now when it comes to our relationship we tend to be a lot more selfish, we have big pointless fights just like the next couple…its a work in progress and ultimately love keeps us going!
And what about those adorable little girls?
Seriously they are the most amazing people I could possibly spend my time with. I won’t lie though, it is fun getting attention wherever we go…they are outgoing, vibrant and beautiful…If I indulge too much in this though, I start to feel a little like a pageant mom. I am just really really really really proud of my daughters.
Besides getting a website (their only shop is on Etsy right now. Crazy, I know), Beth is hoping to start blogging and ultimately, she wants to open up a storefront in Nashville. In the immediate future, she is preparing for her kids to start school and as for their business, they are trying to keep up with all the busy work and all the orders coming in, while still keeping themselves open for new opportunities.
In our personal life we are working on laying down roots in Nashville and staying put. This has been very challenging as I tend to daydream most about not just traveling, but really living and experiencing other places. We also just moved to the best school district in our area as Truly prepares to start kindergarten, basically making us the poorest family in the richest part of town. I’m learning to feel ok with being me as I build relationships with neighbors who aren’t like me. In business a lot of days it feels like we can’t keep up and spend all of our time doing busy work while longing to do creative design work. We’re just inching in on the next level, but can’t quite afford help yet, so sometimes it feels like we never get a break. Still we try to not let opportunities pass us by even if it means pulling an all-nighter here and there…we were recently asked to design a tee exclusive to crew of Bill Murray’s new movie. We will also be donating our signature Rainbow Colored “Don’t Hate” tee to the HERE Arts Center In NYC to promote a Musical entitled “God Hates This Show” satirizing the Westboro Baptist Church. The projects aside from our Etsy shop seem endless and we intend to continue to ride this wave!
Through all the changes, there is one thing that remains important to the Remsberg family, it’s embracing the community.
Placing value on the people around you that you interact with face to face…meeting needs without strings attached. Basically LOVE.
If you know of any cool moms (yourself included) who would be awesome for this, please feel free to leave a brief description and contact info in the comments. You can also email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. It has been so amazing getting to know all of these inspirational and rad mommas!