Lauren’s Happy Face Project Part 1

Setting myself up to achieve greater happiness and wellbeing- so much more to look forward to in life when you feel positive about your future!

This week, I started taking baby steps towards getting my happy mojo back. I was kicking butt and doing good things for myself and others.

The first good deed I did for myself was to go and get my nails done. Not a big deal to some, but when you have two little ones, study to do, deadlines for your small business to reach and a paid part-time position as well, time is precious and alone-time comes but once a millenium.

It felt really good. I switched my brain off for 30 minutes at least. I didn’t tune in to the buzz of married women and teenage chicks around me. And my nails look damn cute, if I say so myself.

Then onto something that started off as something I wanted to do for myself, but turned into something I could help someone else with. Again, it’s a very small thing but it became a really positive interaction between myself and a perfectly friendly stranger.

I took my beloved vehicle to get a much-need laser clean. Bargain at $12. Swiped my card, no luck. Flipped the card and tried to swipe again. Still no joy. Kept frantically swiping whilst being careful that no one was watching me, the crazy woman, looking like I was having a seizure getting my card to swipe. All I wanted was to get my car washed. Then I did something I never normally do. I called the Help Line. Some random, deep voiced Ocker Bloke answered and I politely informed him that his card machine for this car wash was in deep doo-doo. He thanked me and the phone call ended.

Four hours later, I received a phone call back from Ocker Aussie who informed me that I was entitled to a free upgraded wash, vacuum and air freshener (Blackberry Clove, get on it people) as his machine hadn’t been working for a number of days and he wouldn’t have known this if I didn’t call. 

So #1- I made a polite phone call, despite my frustration at having so little time to get my car washed and going home with my car still looking like it’d run through a weekend bush bash (usually I’d not call and go home feeling angry)

#2- I helped someone else. It was a small gesture and not life-saving, but it helped his business and he was back there at the Car Wash to give my car a polish and a sparkle for free that afternoon and he was lovely. Really lovely.

Win-win all around. And it made me feel really good. Someone cared about what I was saying and responded in such a nice way to something that should’ve been so trivial to me.

TICK- I WAS more patient and I DID NOT lose my cool!

TICK- I did something nice for myself and for someone else.

God it felt good.

This weekend has been all about keeping my cool in the face of some nastiness in my life. Tactless people who don’t care about me will no longer be able to rent so much free space in my head. I’m done with these people and I’m moving on. End of story and my story happily continues on!


Loving life, killing it in the face of challenges, hardship and tough times. 

Preparing for 2014- My {Trimmed} Wish List

How will you start the New Year with fresh eyes, organized and in the highest of business spirits?

2014’s motto is “Routine and Clean” for me. I’ll be sorting our {small but homely} house from ceiling to floor. I’ll be making myself a small home office in the corner of my new bedroom, where I can write until the cows come home.

I’m going to keep my filing in check from the beginning! {have learned the hard way in 2013}.

I’m going to stick to my monthly schedules.

I’m going to read daily.

I’m not going to buy any more stationary supplies from the Boxing Day Sales! {I love stationary as much as I do hot dinners, in fact I’d go without dinner for something from Kikki K}

My newsletter will be out fortnightly. It’s been tricky getting it up and running with sickly kids in the house on top of client work, but it WILL happen in January!

I want to blog more, I’ve really missed it. Doing a lot of client work means less time to write just for me. So I’m pledging to myself to get back into my blogging groove. It’s where I belong {hearts}

Other than tonnes of happiness and health for my family {and a great year, one without heartache; this year was a year of extreme happiness through the birth of my daughter and then extreme sadness, with the death of my Mother}, to have my head screwed on correctly and to make good choices is all I ask for.


What are you asking of 2014?

Lauren @LittleRed

Little Red’s Guest Book- with Tracey McIlwain (from Nature Direct)

(Image courtesy of Tracey McIlwain- Nature Direct)
Hey Tracey, can you tell my readers about your small business adventure- how you came to be a part of Nature Direct, what Nature Direct is, what kind of service and products you provide and your target clients?

 At Nature Direct we create happier, healthier home and work environments by offering a unique range of non-toxic, eco-friendly cleaning solutions and disinfectants created by nature. Our products are effective, powerful, affordable, safe, sustainable and non-hazardous. They are available exclusively via our Show’n’Go presentations and delivered straight to your door. At Nature Direct, we believe that the journey towards a healthier and safer future for ourselves and our world begins with a single step. Nature Direct is your first step in the right direction. Nature Direct is for everyone that has a toilet!

(Image courtesy of Tracey McIlwain- Nature Direct)

 I stumbled across Nature Direct 12 months ago – like many mums – I was raising a family and concerned about our health – I was looking for an alternative to “bleach”. Nature Direct became my solution and more …..I was tired of working in a stressful job, travelling 1 hour each way, with no opportunity to return to work part time after maternity leave and thought this could be the answer. Being a Nature Direct Distributor has provided me with the opportunity to work flexible hours and stay at home with my daughter; as well as the opportunity to spread the message of health and wellness.


Is this your first venture into small business? Do you have any other small business dreams? 

Yes Nature Direct is my first venture into a small business and I would love the opportunity to spread the message with all Australians

Why Nature Direct? 

I’m a passionate business mum wanting to change people’s lives – Nature Direct allows me the opportunity to serve my community and my customers.

Describe how you achieved a business goal you set for yourself and how did you celebrate achieving it?

In my business, personal and business goals go hand in hand. This last month I set myself a target of rebuilding my business and achieved it by stepping outside my comfort zone and reconnecting with previous customers and acquaintances which resulted in booking more Show n Go’s and hence, more sales.  I celebrated with a bit of a dance around the lounge room and a nice family dinner out.

Name your three favourite internet sites 

MindBodyGreen, Care2 and Environmental Working Group

How do you wind down after a hard day at work? 

Been known to indulge in a of glass wine (or two)

Where would your ideal dinner date be in Melbourne and what would you order?

At my local Japanese Restaurant and I would order California rolls and be sipping on French Champagne with my awesome husband!

What are your immediate and future goals for your small business? 

This year my goal is to double my business income and also sponsor customers into the business to share the success and rewards!

Wearing sunglasses indoors- strange or stylish? 


Your best tips for mums out there who are aiming at combining motherhood with running a small business?

Take each day as it comes and just keep putting one foot in front of the other – baby steps each day can amount to huge achievements!

Which of all of your cooking recipes would you want your children to teach their children? 

Yorkshire pudding – passed down from my great grand mother who was English!

What was your last dream about?

A Holiday

Describe your business in three words

Natural, informative, Effective

You’ve slept through your alarm and consequently have missed an important meeting with a propective client- what do you do to retain their interest in your business?

Be apologetic and completely honest – always think this is the best policy and most importantly – be myself!

Which quote do you live your life by? 

“God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Which small business have you come to love in the last few months?

Healthy Angels – foster a positive start

Which is your favourite Nature Direct product and why? 

EnviroMist – What other product on the market can you buy in the market place that is Natural, can sanitises and deodorise in one?  Just love the fact that I can use it as my hand sanitiser, toilet spray, fridge wipe, clean the kiddies toys and chopping boards as well as a mould inhibitor in the shower – and with no need to wipe!

Which part of running a small business is your favourite?

Meeting new people and making great friends, doing something that does not feel like work!

Do you have any current promotions for your clients or prospective clients that my readers must know about? 

At Nature Direct we value our customers and have fantastic host offers: Lifetime Membership, Pack Upgrades, percentage off sales and more.  For the month of August we have an extra special offer on our fantastic mop system (see facebook page for video).

Any parting words for my readers? 

For the SAHMs just keep plugging away and do something to contribute to your business each day (even if that means taking time to look after you).

Thanks so much Tracey for your pearls of small business and natural product wisdom! I really appreciate your time and hope you all took something important away from Tracey’s responses.
Here are Tracey’s details, should you want to get in touch with her to discuss the Nature Direct range
Tracey McIlwain   FYI: note it is Mcilwain (the i is a capital)
Nature Direct Distributor
M. 0403 312 905
Stay tuned next week for Little Red’s Guest Book!