This next Mommalikeyou feature unveils the beautiful Momma behind the Rosie Bee brand – a lady I’ve come to call my friend, even though we’ve only met over the interwebs. Meet Laura, a beautiful Momma of a pigeon pair who successfully juggles motherhood, two small children and a thriving local business.
Name: Laura Ritchie
Where do you live: We live on our family farm just outside of a small town called Groblersdal in the Limpopo Province.
Kids? I have a little girl of almost 3 and a little boy who is 6 months old.
Where to find you on social media:
Blog or website: www.rosiebee.co.za
Facebook page: @RosieBeeChildrensClothing
Tell us a bit about what it was like to become a mom for you?
Becoming a mom for the first time with my daughter Emily was a whirlwind of emotions for me. It was the greatest joy and wonder I had ever experienced but it also brought with it such a sense of fear and anxiety – ‘would I be the best mommy for her?’. I am a very controlled person to some degree, so before Emily I had a set idea of what having a little newborn baby would be like. Boy was the rug pulled out from under my feet when my precious little girl arrived! I realised after about 3 months (and following my mom’s advice) that all babies are not alike, that they don’t ‘read the baby books’ so many people advise one to read and that the best thing I could do for both Em and I was to take a step back and follow her lead. Once I did this, our journey together became so much more relaxed and fun! It’s the most beautiful journey I have been on, both exciting and quite scary at the same time. Now, having had my little boy in January, we feel so complete as a family and it has definitely been a much more relaxed experience this time round.
What were your pregnancies like?
I am very blessed in that both my pregnancies were really great. I did not have morning sickness, and I would only get ill if we travelled. I had the normal tiredness that comes with being pregnant, along with the standard aches and pains. Emily’s birth was a scary one though, I had a placenta abruption while at the hospital seeing if I could be induced, but thankfully we were both okay.
When you’re not being a momma, what do you do?
I run a children’s clothing business called Rosie Bee, as well as also working on our family farm, doing all our audits as we pack fresh vegetables for the supermarkets throughout the country!
What is Rosie Bee about and how did you come up with the idea for it?
Rosie Bee is a business that comes straight from my heart. It re-awakened my creativity and it helped me find the new me as a mom. Rosie Bee is about excellent quality, unique baby and toddler clothing. We focus on limited edition pieces of clothing with special prints inspired by nature. Our clothes are both fun and very comfortable to wear – perfect to adventure in! Emily was my inspiration to start Rosie Bee. I struggled to find particular pieces of clothing for her, and so I thought we could try and make her a few pieces. My mom had a wonderfully creative gentleman working for her, he had been taught to sew by my granny and aunt, and so one day I gave him a little dress of Em’s and asked him if he could make another one for me. He did – and it was meticulously made and finished off. That is when I decided to start planning Rosie Bee.
Any milestones for Rosie Bee yet?
We celebrated one year in business in March this year! Having been quite scared to start, and after much prompting from my wonderful husband and mom – this milestone made me so very happy. I think having our online store launch last year in August was also a huge source of excitement for me.
What advice would you share with anyone wanting to start a business?
I would say, do your research well, find suppliers that you trust and with whom you can build a strong relationship. Sometimes in life we just need to take that jump, it is scary but so very worth it.
What’s in store for Rosie Bee?
I have so many plans for the future! I would love to have another locally based person trained to cut and sew for us and to join our team. I believe strongly in empowering the people that live and work in our area. We will also have a few new ranges released in the next few months. Here’s a hint: these will not be specifically clothing related – but they will be tied into our belief that childhood should be filled with fun, magic and a bit of whimsy.
What do you do to take time for yourself, away from the kids and your jobs and your business?
When I do have a moment to myself, I love gardening, it is where I feel closest to my gran who was an extremely important part of my life. I also enjoy reading and a nice hot bubble bath.
As a mom, what’s in your handbag?
My handbag is quite disorganised! I’ve usually got lip balm (that is if my daughter hasn’t taken it, she is obsessed with lip balm lol!), my purse, hand cream and of course, wet wipes!
Best thing about mommahood?
So many things come to mind. That moment when my babies fall asleep in my arms or on my chest, or just watching them completely relax and knowing that I am their safe place. All the chats that I have with my little almost 3-year-old – I love the things she comes up with. She is so hilarious, and I love laughing with her! I’m also loving the baby stage with my son, he is so curious at the moment and it’s fun to see what grabs his interest. I love how every single stage that they go through is so unique and filled with such new adventures.
What are the kids into playing with right now?
Well, for my 6 month old, it’s pretty much anything he can get his hands on particularly his sister’s dinosaur soft toy called ‘Flippie’. And with Emily, who is almost 3, it is anything craft related. She loves to paint and play with Playdoh, but her little wooden kitchen is to date her most favourite toy.
Thank you to Laura for sharing her story with us – be sure to follow Rosie Bee on social media, and have a little shop while you’re at it! Soph is Rosie Bee’s biggest fan and absolutely adores her headbands – the fabric is soft and buttery and the quality is second-to-none. Custom orders are also taken.