We had the good fortune of connecting with Amanda Valadez and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Amanda, how has your work-life balance changed over time?
Balance is a tricky thing to manage, but I’ve found it’s one of the most essential aspects in striving towards a successful business/career. Just like riding a bike, you can’t propel yourself forward, or steer in the right direction without the stability and security of balance. Your first attempts at balancing all your commitments, from family, to work, to personal or professional development, might lead to a few crashes and bumps and bruises. I know I’ve had my share. However, after a while and many trials, I feel like you get a feel for how much you can handle and little by little you keep developing your ability to balance life more efficiently if you can keep picking yourself up and putting yourself out there again.
Balancing all the things that you love or are important in your life isn’t easy. You always want to give more time to each important aspect, but are only left to wish for more time in the day. Recently, I obtained my Masters degree while being a full-time teacher, wife, and mom. I think that helped prepare me to be able to balance my start-up with the needs of my family and demands of my regular job. Prioritization and organization are key to any success. I have noticed that when I intentionally plan my day, there is more quality time to be spent. Whether it be working on custom orders, getting the family situated at dinner, or getting all my i’s dotted and t’s crossed while teaching, it’s about doing the best and most you can during what little time you have.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I have been a teacher for 13 years. During some of the uncertainty and extended breaks due to COVID-19, it allowed me to explore and express my crafty side and begin creating things. My first creation was a tray that had our family name. I sanded it, stained it, personalized it, and the added handles. That led to making some for family members and friends. Teaching has always been my passion, but building and creating comes in a close second. It brings me joy hearing from a satisfied customer/parent/student. One thing that sets me apart is my passion. I put so much effort and love into what I work on and that makes a difference. It is definitely not easy with all the hours that come with being a teacher, mom, wife and creator, but as they say, where there’s a will, there’s a way. I want the world to know that it is up to you to make your dreams come true.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
There are so many places to see and experience in Dallas and the surrounding areas. Because of the Texas heat, I’d start the day off with an outdoor activity before the sun begins to really burn. The Arboretum has acres of beautiful scenery and gorgeous views and showcases themed areas depending on the seasons or holidays. You can also either paddle board at White rock Lake or bring a picnic basket for a nice sunset picnic with your favorite wine. Bike riding, kayaking, or even just going for a run would also be perfect there. In McKinney, there’s Tupps Brewery and Celt for drinks and live music. The Yard is a great place for outdoor dining and family friendly as it has outdoor games for anyone to use. Whatever your friends and family want to do, I’m sure there is a perfect place for it in the Dallas area.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I have to begin by mentioning my parents. Growing up, my mom has always supported my crazy craft obsessions, including my first wood burning kit. I want to also mention my sweet, creative, and persuading teacher friend Julie. She encouraged me to join her in setting up at a local market to sell products. This meant making things official as a small business owner. We are constantly sharing ideas and business strategies. I wouldn’t have made this business official as soon as I did, if it weren’t for her encouragement. I’ve also found tons of support at local DFW markets. I thought it would feel like more of a competition, but everyone is super supportive.
Behind the scenes is the support of my husband. He believed in me from the beginning and kept believing in me even when I didn’t believe in myself. This is definitely a team effort. He may not be the face, but his hands are all over AV Home Design. That’s what I love most about AV Home Design, my husband and the boys ask how they can help out and most of the time support me and my wild ideas. He has definitely helped make this dream come true.
Instagram: @rcphotography3 https://rcphotography3.squarespace.com/shop Vanessa Sias-Banda North Texas Photographer