We’re gonna do this.

by mssinglemama on January 24, 2010

I am not engaged.

John is not moving in with us.

And, I am not pregnant.

I hope that’s not incredibly disappointing. The last time I had big news, a few of you thought it was – so, so – not really worthy of such “teasing.” So here’s a snippet regarding the above — be patient because John Bear and I are definitely, absolutely and positively moving in that direction. We’re just taking our sweet time for a few reasons – the biggest being that there is no need to rush something that is meant to last a lifetime. Anti-climatic, I know. (But see #3 on the list down below for another teaser on that subject.)

Now… the news this time around.

Last spring, I left my very secure and stable day job as an ad agency’s senior interactive copywriter to break out on my own as a full-time blogger and a part-time freelancer. But it wasn’t easy – at all. I was working from home, with Benjamin in it and I had a lack of direction. When an appealing job offer landed in my lap, I bailed on the solo blogger plan and jumped at the chance for stability and certainty.

Less than one month into my new job I started feeling pangs of regret for a number of reasons. The one most disturbing was a heavy, undeniable gut feeling that I had given up too soon. The job was fine but the hours were grueling, the skill set (medical writing) was out of my realm and I was only partially focused on doing what I love – social and search marketing.

At home, John – who also lives and breathes all things interactive- and I started discussing what options we had. Working for other agencies seemed fruitless because it wasn’t our employers who were to blame for our restlessness, it was our own impatience and eagerness to do what we love – 100% of the time.

“We just have to be patient,” I told him. “The answers will surface.”

And soon after they did.

I opened an e-mail from a potential client. Their budget had cleared and they wanted to work with Cement Marketing, my freelance marketing group. Less than a week earlier John’s agency had “down-sized” his department and eliminated his position. All signs pointed toward go and so I did what every single mom shouldn’t do and I quit my job (again). I gave my employers (some really awesome guys) the resume of a friend of mine and a more than adequate replacement and then dove right into Cement Marketing.

This time, I would do a few things differently. I would need an office space, outside of my apartment and I would need to become a we. My long-time partner and best of friends, Bradley Spencer was down and now all we needed was John.

“We couldn’t work together,” he’d say.

“Why not?” I’d ask.

“I don’t know, it would just be weird.”

“Okay. Well, that’s that.” Unlike my usual self – I didn’t push him in one direction or the other, even though I thought it would be awesome. And after all, if you can’t work together – can you really raise children together? A relationship is a partnership in every sense of the word. Why not learn even more about each other and master our communication before another child or another wedding comes along?

We haven’t looked back since and in just the past 24 hours I have registered Cement Marketing as a business, started the official trademark process through my awesome and very official lawyers (we are hoping some Cement company won’t stand in our way) and today Brad, John and I found our office space.

The fated and absolutely perfect office – is directly above Wild Goose Creative – a performing arts studio, gallery and special events space.

Right now it looks like this….

Cement Marketing offices

Typically this wouldn’t be an issue. I would take my time setting it up but right now it’s Sunday night, going on Monday morning and our first client meeting is at 9:00 am on Tuesday morning. Pushing the meeting off is out of the question because we’re all way too excited and the project needs to kick off. And why have it somewhere else when this place can look up to snuff and absolutely fabulous by then? [And just wait until I tell you about my client. There couldn't be a more worthy or exciting non-profit. Destiny, I tell you - this entire thing.]

Tonight as I was clicking to confirm a reservation for a rental van to haul home all of the furniture we buy at Ikea tomorrow, I told John through the phone, “This should feel completely crazy, but it doesn’t. Do you feel like this is crazy?”

“No, I don’t. It actually feels really damn good.”

“I know. I’ll call you in the morning and we’ll go pick up the van.”

“Okay, Baby,” and then he added – the words practically jumping out of his mouth, “We’re gonna do this!”

Yeah, I think we are.

So, without further ado… I am proud to announce a few things:

1.  Cement Marketing. A full-service Web development firm with a focus on highly engaging social media content and search engine optimization. We operate out of Columbus, Ohio but can service any client, in any industry, the world over. Read more about Cement Marketing and our social and search marketing strategies. [P.S. Keep tabs on our blog and our Twitter because we'll be constantly buzzing. Between John, Brad and I things are going to be insanely fun and productive. Should be interesting.]

cementmarketing_logo

2. Sway Interactive Workshop. Coming soon… the Sway Interactive Workshop is a truly interactive, hands-on learning experience. The two-day workshops focusing on search and social marketing will be held this Spring. Attendees will receive one-on-one inspiration, instruction and training from myself, Advergirl (the amazing Leigh Householder), John Raymond and Bradley Spencer to develop and create every element they’ll need to launch their own search or social marketing campaign. More on this later.

sway-interactive-workshop

3. (New) New Leaf Necklaces. You didn’t think I’d forget about you, did you? So John and I were at a jewelers last week. For no reason. Really. No reason at all. Nope. We were just in a jewelers. Totally normal place for a couple to hang out. Any whooooo… I had my new leaf necklace on and I asked him if they could do some magic and re-create it in pure sterling silver for me. And – guess what – they totally can. And guess what else? I am also going to have him make a new leaf charm bracelet. So, if you have more than one child you could buy extra leaf charms. (I owe the credit for the charm bracelet idea to @Jen_K_ my single mama sista and creative partner in crime. See her vision and work here.).

So how about all of them apples? Huh?

Did I disappoint again?

God, I hope not. I’m not sure if I can make up anything more exciting than this. Oh, and I will have oodles of photos. tweets, videos and Facebook updates as we make over this office space.

Stay tuned…

Related posts:

  1. Brave or just crazy?
  2. On quitting your day job.
  3. The beginning.
  4. The Trip Story, Part 4
  5. Thanks, etc.

{ 56 comments… read them below or add one }

Anna January 24, 2010 at 6:18 pm

Sounds awesome…congrats on the new business!

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Erin January 24, 2010 at 6:21 pm

Alaina… I think this is TRULY awesome. Totally worth the wait. The office space…. HEAVENLY!!!! I know you’ll work your magic in there and make it sing. You are a one-woman army…. get ‘er done! SO glad you get a chance to work for yourself again – you sounded pretty down in your more recent posts. Taking control business and creativity-wise… you’ll be at your best. CONGRATULATIONS on your new ventures – I’ll send anyone who could use your expertise in the way of Cement Marketing and Sway!

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Rebecca January 24, 2010 at 6:22 pm

Congrats!!!! This sounds very exciting. Best of luck!

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arscuore January 24, 2010 at 6:23 pm

So excited for you both!! It’s so important to love what you do!

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Juli January 24, 2010 at 6:23 pm

YAY! Congratulations! (I was right in my hunch that you were leaving your job again!!!!) Best wishes on the new endeavor and I’ll be watching for a workshop to upgrade my outdated PR skills. I’ve been a SAHM too long. I am soooo excited for you and John!

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Shiang January 24, 2010 at 6:25 pm

Congrats!! Best of luck to all of you on your new venture! How exciting!!!
Keep in touch…

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Courtney January 24, 2010 at 6:25 pm

I think your news is awesome!! I would love to attend a Sway Interactive Workshop. Good Luck with your new business. Your initiative and drive is inspiring!

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Lindsey Hutchinson January 24, 2010 at 6:30 pm

Thanks for the nod, we appreciate all you do (I.e. Create awesome websites!).

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Rachel January 24, 2010 at 6:32 pm

YAY! Your new office is in my hood. Wild Goose has great energy and holds potential for partnerships too. I’ll be hoping for clear roads for you tomorrow…

I hope you’ll share the date of the Sway workshops soon. I want to promote to my mama business friends and hopefully attend myself.

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Rachel January 24, 2010 at 6:34 pm

Oh, and I work with my husband on our small business and with my blog. It can be done and is really fun most of the time. I do highly recommend some boundaries, like no business on date night.

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Jill January 24, 2010 at 6:57 pm

Wonderful news, congrats to you and John Bear!! I wish you all the success in the world

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Andrea January 24, 2010 at 7:06 pm

This sounds so exciting!, I suppossed is was going to be related to your job. Though its a very delicate territory (workland) with a nice guy as John it can be awesome. And the third or fourth partner is crucial for success.
I´m going in a totally unexpected direction this year too, 2010: let´s get the party started!! xoxo. Andrea

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Melissa January 24, 2010 at 7:20 pm

That was sooooo NOT a let down. Congrats and enjoy! You deserve it!

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Office Space Soundtrack January 24, 2010 at 7:30 pm

You’ll get whiplash the first time going from “Still” to Perez Prado’s jubilant “Mambo #8.” My fondest wish for all you good citizens out there is that the soundtrack will cause you to rent the film. Call in sick to work, line up ten beers in front of you and enjoy the great cathartic document of corporate angst which is “Office Space.”

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Jared January 24, 2010 at 7:33 pm

Way to go! I’m so excited for you. You’ll do great!

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Cat January 24, 2010 at 7:45 pm

Congratulations!! That sounds very exciting. I am so impressed by your venture. It sounds like you have a great team put together. Again, congratulations!

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Julie January 24, 2010 at 7:54 pm

That is so EXCITING! Congratulations! Can’t wait to follow you on this new journey and hear all about your adventures. *And I’m delurking… I forgot to the other day :o )

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Kathleen January 24, 2010 at 7:56 pm

Totally not disappointing! I am so excited for you and everyone else involved. Good luck! I look forward to reading about this new chapter in your life.

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Prep&Priss January 24, 2010 at 8:31 pm

Congratulations! This is a very big step in terms of both your relationship and life. Best wishes.

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Star January 24, 2010 at 9:34 pm

What kinda price point are we talking about for SWAY? I’m totally in if the price is right :)

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Cat January 24, 2010 at 9:49 pm

Congrats and good luck!

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terri January 24, 2010 at 9:54 pm

Truly, I have goosebumps on top of my goosebumps. This is going to be AMAZING! Actually, it already is…

;) t

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Another Lara January 24, 2010 at 10:14 pm

Woooo hooooo! You are so so so so SO courageous. I wish you only the best and brightest of things.

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becca January 24, 2010 at 10:43 pm

Congrats on the new business! I’m in studying to be an advertising copywriter. Good choice I think :D
Good Luck!

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Zoeyjane January 25, 2010 at 12:49 am

Huge congrats. Freelancing, I think, has been what’s held me together during the rest of the tough stuff. Though I’m definitely envious of that gorgeous space – I usually only ever get a breezy table at a coffeeshop with free wifi!

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Jen @ follow my bliss January 25, 2010 at 1:04 am

I tweeted you a congrats, but I had to come here and say so too! I think this is excellent. I’m so happy for you that you are finding the career that suits you best and that you’re moving forward with it. As I mentioned on twitter, my boyfriend has recently become an integral part of my bakery business, Fanny & Jane, which is a home-grown, self-funded venture that has, since I quit my boring desk job to devote more energy to it, consumed most of my time and all of my passion. And I’m happy! I don’t have a single regret. I’m loving owning my own business – it’s hard as hell but rewarding all the time. AND I’m loving having my boyfriend as a partner in it! It’s actually just added to our relationship, rather than complicated it, to have him come on board and work with me to grow this little biz. We don’t have children yet so this experience, even more than other things we’ve done together, has really cemented for me how much I can trust him, rely on him, and what an amazing partner and person he is. If you and John Bear are good partners in life, which is sounds like you’ve definitely become, you will be good partners in business – at least that’s been my experience! Best of luck to you. :) I will wear my new leaf necklace tomorrow and think of the new leaf you’re turning over. :)

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Sheila January 25, 2010 at 1:10 am

That’s SUPER exciting!!!!!!! :) :) :)

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jen January 25, 2010 at 2:36 am

Congratulations. Fingers crossed it goes well. Good on you for having the guts and the vision to do it.

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Laura January 25, 2010 at 5:59 am

congrats. It sounds so exciting. best of luck!!!

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Stac January 25, 2010 at 6:22 am

Congrads! And I’m soooooo jealous. I sit in a cube all day, daydreaming about various job changes that range from fashion designer, comic book writer, comic book store owner, llama farmer, librarian, etc etc (yup yup, I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up)…

I’m so excited for you!!! :)

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Pamela Slim January 25, 2010 at 6:57 am

Congratulations on the big move!

The space is beautiful, and it sounds like you have amazing energy and motivation to build up a big, beautiful, thriving business with your partners.

Fly like the wind!

:)
-Pam

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Vanessa January 25, 2010 at 7:12 am

This is so awesome good for you! I came and checked out your blog being a single mama myself and am desperately trying to find a way to leave my day job to pursue my dreams and this is fabulous inspiration. The space is awesome. SO much potential there.

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Julie January 25, 2010 at 7:45 am

Your life, in so many ways, has mirrored mine — single mom, working from home, editor/writer, entering the workforce post-divorce for benefits and stability, relationship issues, etc. Your blog truly inspires. I can’t wait to hear more about your company. Thank you for blogging. You’re awesome. (And I want to do the two-day workshop — will it be on the weekend?)

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julia January 25, 2010 at 8:05 am

I laugh, I cry, mostly chuckle.

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Dawn January 25, 2010 at 8:05 am

Career mavens generally do fabulous in their own element, creating their own nest. Beautiful!

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April January 25, 2010 at 8:30 am

WOW, this is super exciting! I wasn’t ready for you to say your pregnant – thank goodness, not yet. I am so excited for you and your new adventure. I can’t to wait see pictures of how you decorate the office, please post many of these pictures. You are certainly inspiring with all your confidence. Go Alaina, Go Alaina!

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Jess January 25, 2010 at 9:03 am

Very exciting! Wishing you guys the best of luck!

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Pat January 25, 2010 at 9:21 am

You are going to dominate.

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Jessica January 25, 2010 at 9:30 am

Definite world domination, I agree. Pat will start up the NYC office when the time comes. Congratulations! This is so, so exciting!

Also, Alaina, you can probably count me as a lurker too…

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Pat January 25, 2010 at 9:34 am

Also rather enjoy the comment above re: building a nest. I always build a nest.

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orangek8 January 25, 2010 at 11:29 am

Congratulations! VERY exciting. I’m looking forward to the pics of the office makeover.

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Glenda January 25, 2010 at 11:29 am

congrats!! wishing you the best of luck with your new business and projects!

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mommybella January 25, 2010 at 12:15 pm

although not what we all thought it would be, but still very exciting. GOOD LUCK! I hope you succeed and achieve everything that you want. I have dreams of one day owning my own baby boutique.

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Amanda January 25, 2010 at 12:41 pm

I’m so happy to have such creative upstairs neighbors!! Oh behalf of everyone from Wild Goose; welcome to the block! We are glad to have you!!

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Mia January 25, 2010 at 1:07 pm

You are an amazing woman and I envy your risk-taking, no-nonsense approach to life! you are such an inspiration!!!
Let me know where/how I can help tonight!!
Love you

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Lindsey Hutchinson January 25, 2010 at 1:34 pm

Thank you for the “shout out” and link to our very awesome and official website.

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Speedgirl January 25, 2010 at 1:59 pm

A. You deserve this, girlfriend!
2. I am very proud of both you and John for taking things slows. I think that is really important when kids are in the mix.
III. Super excited to hear about the bracelet with multiple leaves. I have the necklaces in both brass and silver, but my daughter always tells me that there should be three leaves. She doesn’t like sharing a leaf with her brother :)

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Beth January 25, 2010 at 2:11 pm

Welcome to the neighborhood!!! Let us know how we can help you guys settle in!

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Robin January 25, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Hi Alaina,
My husband, best friend, back rubber, mentor, and BUSINESS PARTNER, and I started working together over 20 years ago in Toledo, Ohio. We moved to Columbus about 15 years ago and I am happy to say have 3 great kids and we are still married, happy and still work together. We are 2 of 3 partners in our company. We broke all the rules, (I slept with the boss), we talk about work when we shouldn’t, we didn’t listen to anyone who said it couldn’t work. Our advertising/design company is doing well and we are happy. I don’t think we have ever argued about work. I mean who else is going to cover for you without question? We wouldn’t have it any other way. Oh Ya, And… we even take art classes together down at the Cultural Arts Center. My advice to you is to be a good business person and learn how to run a business. Everything else will fall into place. Good Luck!

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sunny January 25, 2010 at 4:17 pm

Congratulations guys! I’m so happy, so jazzed and just all around excited for you!

If there’s anything this past year has taught you is that “when it’s right, it’s right, and you’ll know it.”

Congrats guys!

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jen_k_ January 26, 2010 at 7:12 am

This is so, so exciting.

Thinking of you guys today – first day in your new space! Can’t wait to visit.

xo
Jen

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Sara January 26, 2010 at 10:24 am

Congrats! You’re a Rockstar!

:)

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Sarcastica January 27, 2010 at 7:35 pm

OMGOSH I’m so excited and happy for you! Congrats, the office space looks FANTASTIC (as I commented already hehe).

Good luck! I believe you will have TONS of success and happiness :D

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30somethingmama February 4, 2010 at 5:14 pm

Oh there!! I got the answer Alaina! Congrats to you and John Bear. I’ve been thinking of setting up a biz myself, but have yet to find the right “partner” with that.

Good job girl. You’re doing it!!

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Anonymous February 9, 2010 at 9:35 pm

Uh, have you ever heard of a tiny little pharma agency called The CEMENTWORKS?
Aren’t you in advertising?
Good luck with that legal biz. I’m sure the company won’t find out…for awhile.

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Sharon McMillan February 14, 2010 at 5:35 pm

Wow – I’ve been away a while from your website. Congratulations!!! Wishing you every success and if I can ever use your services or refer you to a colleague I certainly will. The proof of your skill is in all you do :)

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