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On Growing Up

Updated: Oct 4, 2023

Carly with her daughter wearing a hot pink tee and holding a large disco ball
Photo by Paula Ward Photography

Inclusivity Statement: Regardless of your identity, you are welcome in this space. You don’t have to look like me, think like me, or be in the same phase of life as me to belong here. I am a proud mama, but I am also many other things: a wife, a sister, a daughter, a writer, an artist, and who knows what else. In this space, the only requirement is that we recognize that we are never done growing up, never done learning, and that there are no limits to who and what we can be.

I love the process of branding. The creativity that goes into naming, logo design, brand aesthetics, and messaging is something I literally do in my free time because I enjoy it so much. Maybe it’s the symbolism or perhaps the brevity, either way I just adore it.

The words Not So Grown are so powerful to me and they may or may not be to you so I’m going to bring you along on this journey with me in order to initiate you into the club, welcome you into this space, and *hopefully* ignite a spark in you that may have been put out by others.

Several months ago, I was doing a ‘5 Why’ exercise with myself in order to gain some focus, realize my true intentions, and maybe eliminate some habits, responsibilities, or routines that weren’t actually serving my why. The premise of this exercise is to ask a ‘why’ question, and then continue asking why about your response until you find the true, root motivation behind it.

I was trying to deeply understand my own motivations behind the type of business I wanted to start because I was having a hard time justifying it to myself let alone to other people. My ideas included easy recipes, holiday parties, and rag dolls made of recycled baby clothes. I knew that these things are not solving the world's problems and are also not unique - there are millions of people sharing these types of things around the world.

So I continued to ask myself, why would I want to spend my time making dolls or doing other childish things? to which I finally responded, “Being an adult is hard. I have to do so many hard things each and every day. As a teenager, I wanted to grow up so bad, and nowadays I wish I could just be a kid again. I need a little fun, creativity, and extravagance to make this life a little easier, to make being a mom a little easier. That way I can enjoy every moment of my kids’ childhood and maybe feel a little better when they’re grown that it didn’t fly by too fast.”

This realization, although not very profound, was groundbreaking to my mindset. It was like a permission slip I signed myself which justified my own authenticity. Why do you wear so much pink? Because I hate exercising but I love pink so my hot pink outfit makes it a little bit more fun for me. Why do you need to make things when you can just buy them and probably spend less? Because my favorite thing to do is learn new skills and I love showing off things that I’ve made to people I love - it makes me feel proud. Why does your menu have three different dishes with pork and cheese? Because it’s delicious and I can eat what I want!

It’s been a relief for me to remind myself that I’m not so grown that I need to know everything. I’m not so grown that I can’t make mistakes. I’m not so grown that the things I decide to do today have to be the same things I decide to do forever. If each night I can go to bed knowing that I’ve grown a little bit today - I’m doing a great job.

Welcome to the club, I know we have a lot we can learn from each other.

Keep Growing,



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