Colleen is a mom and the owner of Kicks by MKC.
How many children do you have? I have four children. My son (AKA the little guy) is seven years old, and three daughters: the princess is five, the destroyer is three, and itty bitty is six months.
How did you come up with the idea for your company? Because my youngest was eight weeks premature, I was elated when she was finally released from the NICU. I was on such a high I wanted to get our first family photo done right away. Not exactly sure what I thought was going to happen. I guess I thought it was going to be like all the amazing photos I saw in blog land: beautiful family portraits with everyone smiling, having a good time. All I got was a wild dog, explosive diapers, children crying and three frustrated adults (photographer included).
I retold the horror story to my girlfriend the next day, and joked we should photograph their shoes instead. I reasoned their shoes reflect their personality, the little guy (an athlete) always has on his running sneaks, the princess wears sparkly shoes. As we were chatting, the idea went from a funny suggestion to a “why not do this”? After we created one as a gift, we started to receive phone calls asking for custom prints. It kind of just took off. An idea that came from a stressful day actually turned into a business.
What’s your favorite parenting tip? If you noticed the kid’s nicknames above, you’ll see I have a wide variety of personalities. I have learned that each child is an individual, and I have learned to communicate and work with them that way. Everyone is praised, loved, taught, and even punished according to what works for them. Since taking the leap and moving towards this type of interaction, I have seen huge benefits and wonder why I didn’t start sooner.
How do you get your family to eat healthy food and/or exercise? This was something I struggled with till a few years ago. After my third child, I decided to get healthy and joined One Fit Mama, a fitness program where you work out with your kids. Since then, I’ve had my fourth child, and now when I go to work out I have two girls in the stroller, one in a baby sling, and my son runs with me. Our whole family has improved our food choices, changed our eating habits, lost weight, and enjoy our time out to get healthy together. I like that this is our new normal.
How do you recharge your batteries? I have found a new addiction: Pintrest. It’s a place where you catalogue all the things you love. I use it to catalogue fun projects with the kids, ideas for new furnishings and decorating the house, great recipes and lots of other things. I love that I can have everything in one place. It calms me to know all this information is organized, and I can use it at anytime. If you join (it’s FREE) be sure to look me up ~ search Leader ~ and be ready to get addicted!