If there’s one thing you NEED in motherhood it’s a tribe of other women who have your back. Nora Haidao has created just that in the San Diego area - a virtual one-stop shop for all things motherhood that also connects women in real time. Her blog, Blueberry Blooms, is not only a hub of information on activities and resources for moms, but also promotes and hosts community events that are geared toward bringing women together.
I’ve been so fortunate to get to know Nora a little bit over the past several months and am so excited to introduce all of you to the work she’s doing. Read our Q&A below for a glimpse into how she stepped outside of her shell to launch a thriving community that has empowered and connected moms all over the San Diego area.
We want to know more about you! Let’s start off by hearing more about you and your family!
PP: Hi Nora! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
NH: My Name is Nora and I live in sunny San Diego with my husband Hani and our 2.5 year old daughter Claire. I was born and raised in San Diego and there is nowhere else I would rather be.
PP: We’ve had a number of ladies on this blog from all different professional backgrounds. How would you describe yourself?
NH: I’m a Blogger/Influencer
PP: Tell us a little bit about your business, Blueberry Blooms, and how you got started.
NH: When I was pregnant with our daughter I was looking for a prenatal yoga class to go to. I had to call yoga studios all over San Diego to try and find one that offered prenatal yoga. It was the most time-consuming thing and I wished there was a place online where I could find all of these classes so I didn’t have to call around.
Fast forward to having Claire. I left my job and while being a SAHM I decided to start Blueberry Blooms to be a place for moms to find local events. Along with sharing events and classes happening in our area, I blog and talk about motherhood.
PP: During the past six months it seems like your business has really taken off and you’re making a name for yourself, both in the San Diego Community and online. Can you talk a little bit about that progression and how your business has evolved?
NH: When I started Blueberry Blooms in January 2018, I really had no idea how I was supposed to build a community of moms. I started going to playdates and networking events to meet moms and other entrepreneurs. It was hard at first because I’ve never been the type to put myself out there. Like, I never go to anything alone where I didn’t know anyone. I eventually overcame that and built my community online and locally.
PP: It’s funny hearing you say that you were never the type to put yourself out there, because from an outsiders perspective it’s clear that you have such a knack for connecting with people. Especially with collaborations, you always seem to be joining forces with other brands to build each other up and grow. Can you give us some tips on how to best collaborate with other entrepreneurs?
NH: I think going to all the networking events you can go to is key. Some might not be as good as others, but you never know who you will meet. Also, don’t be scared to ask to collaborate with someone. The worst thing they can do is say no. But, in reality, most of the time they say yes, so just ask!
PP: As business owner, it can be really tough to separate yourself from your hustle. Do you have any tips specifically on how to separate work and personal time? Or on the opposite end of the spectrum, any tips for integrating the two?
NH: Because my work has a lot to do with my mom life sometimes it is so hard to get off my phone. I have been trying to take pictures and post them later when my daughter is sleeping or when we are on our way home, rather than in the moment. It is something I am still working on and really don’t know if I will ever manage to figure out.
PP: Totally. I, too, feel like that’s a constant struggle. With all of your hats so intertwined, do you have tips on how you keep yourself organized?
NH: I plan my week on Sundays. I sit down and get all of my pictures and posts written out (sometimes I slack and it makes for an unproductive week). I use the calendar on my phone and a wall calendar so I know what events I have coming up. I make sure I have one day to sit alone during the week to go over everything I have going on.
PP: That’s a great tip. And I’m sure that’s helped you to maintain a level of consistency with branding and executing Blueberry Blooms. Speaking of consistency, you’ve really mastered the branding aspect of your business. Do you have any branding tips for budding entrepreneurs?
NH: Being consistent for sure. Post often, connect with followers, be yourself, be real and engage with people.
PP: Tell us a little bit about your life before this chapter of motherhood. What did your career look like? How has motherhood impacted your professional choices?
NH: Before Motherhood I worked in healthcare and also worked as an office manager at a personal development company where I managed the customer service team. I never thought I would ever be a SAHM. It really was something that I was not interested in. But, after having Claire it was different. I couldn’t imagine leaving her and thankfully my husband can support us, so I’m able to stay home with her.
PP: Between staying home with Claire, running Blueberry Blooms and all the other things in between, do you ever feel like you put your own needs on the back burner? Give us three ways you incorporate self-care into your life.
NH: I love self-care but it took me almost 1.5 years to figure out how to do it. It can be as simple as waking up earlier than anyone in the house and drinking your coffee alone. For me, I get my nails done without brining my daughter. Even going grocery shopping alone. Everyone’s self-care looks different for them. I have also found scheduling it in helps.
PP: Going back to your business, can you tell us a little more about WHY you do what you do. What keeps you inspired?
NH: The most rewarding part of Blueberry Blooms is when I see moms connecting with each other through the events I’m a part of. I think having a mom tribe is the most important thing. Whether that is online or locally, it is vital. I love when moms tell me how much they enjoyed a class or event I promoted. It is so rewarding for me and it keeps me going because I know that I am making these moms’ lives easier.
PP: Where do you envision Blueberry Blooms going? What are your goals?
NH: My goal is to build a huge community for moms to connect, to have more events where we can connect in real life, and to help moms find a community where they can be comfortable and find their tribe.
PP: That is amazing, Nora. And am I right in saying that you’ve actually hosted some events yourself, to connect moms and move toward that greater community?
NH: Yes, I hosted my second motherhood event, The Motherhood Mission, in September. We had three speakers that talked about parenting, self care, postpartum and everything in between. The first one was in May and it was such a success I knew I wanted to do it again. There is nothing like leaving your kids at home for the night and connecting with other mothers.
PP: Lastly, what is the #1 piece of advice you would give mamas who are considering running their own business?
NH: Just do it. It won’t be perfect in the beginning and that is ok. You just have to start somewhere.
PP: Yes! And where can we follow along on your journey?
NH: Check out my Website, www.blueberryblooms.com , and follow along with me on Instagram @blueberryblooms