Colleen & I started Mama Said Tees with high hopes paired with intentions of making this world just a little bit better for our children. As most of you know, just 5 days after we opened our company Colleen’s sister was murdered. She was killed in front of her parents and her two sons, in her parent’s home. In the blink of an eye our world flipped upside down; an entire family destroyed in one unthinkable act of violence. It’s truly too hard to even comprehend, which is why her family stays extra busy and focuses on the good to help them grieve the horrific bad. This moment ignited a fire in my heart & soul. Those things you see on the news actually happen, every day, all around us. Well, as things would have it, this moment in time gave Mama Said Tees a very big voice and we were not going to let our voice just rest with messages on t-shirts. We were going to do more than we thought we ever could because if we could brighten a day, prevent heartache or change the world for just ONE person, then we were going to work our butts off to make sure we did it.
Well, owning a small business while trying to change the world (oh, and raising 9 kids (yes, husbands are included in that count)) is quite the job. We have experienced so many ups and downs throughout our 3yr journey so far and have learned SO much. There are moments that make us want to throw in the towel followed by moments that truly take our breath away. The emails we receive bearing your souls, the trust you instill in us to share your stories, the random encounters at the store asking if “you are one of the Colleens from Mama Said Tees” that lead to friendships; to say we are honored is an understatement. We not only feel like we need to keep our small business booming for our own personal reasons, but for all of you. For all your stories of bravery, for all the moments when you finally feel like you’re not alone, for the pure joy you felt while giving/receiving kindness, for the smile on your face when you see one of our shirts on someone else. For the MST family we have created and will continue to grow.
I say, “kindness is #trending” because we see so many messages of kindness in the world today. We see some that make us do a painful double take and lead us to a glass of wine while repeating a mantra of, “imitation is flattery, imitation is flattery, HOW COULD THEY DO THAT, okay calm down, imitation is flattery.” We see others that are pure genius and have us peanut butter and jealous that we didn’t come up with that. We are surrounded by these positive messages, but what is behind those messages is where we stand oh so proud! You’ve heard the expression, “You can talk the talk, but can you walk the walk?” Well, we think we’re pretty darn good at walking the walk and are so thankful for those that walk with us.
We don’t want you to buy a shirt, mug, or accessory to just wear it or use it. We want you to be inspired by it. We want you to engage in a conversation with someone at the store when they comment on your shirt. We want you to look down and smile and follow it up with an act of kindness. We want you to talk with your children about what their shirt means. It doesn’t end with the message, it starts with the message. And contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be a “goodie goodie” to be a good person. I sometimes have to check in with my RBF (resting b**** face) all while remembering that some people don’t appreciate my “decorative” language. I often have to try to see the good because I don’t come to optimism as naturally as CS. Kindness isn’t about living in a fairytale world. Kindness is about seeing the need for it, knowing you can make a difference every day and then actually making it.
While we were at a holiday mart this past week we were meeting LOTS of new friends and realized just how easy it is to make people feel our passion in person. We were having heart to hearts with people while crying and laughing. We were spewing kindness like word vomit. In fact, we were driving in the car having a conversation and I stopped and started laughing. We were talking SO passionately to each other about kindness, it was as if we were trying to convince each other that kindness is needed in the world. Santa, just get us both a soap box for Christmas and we will stand on them proudly and ramble on until our voices stop working. The week left us beyond inspired, but it got us wondering if all our MST family truly knows how passionate we are about our company. We sure hope so, but in case you don’t, our merchandise is just the tip of the iceberg. You may not know about the campaigns we create, the blogs with tips to talking to your children, the speaking events we do, the free printables & #everydaykind cards we hand out. Take a moment to peek around our website to find all the other beneficial stuff you can find, because that is where so much of our passion lies. And know that this is just the beginning. We have BIG plans in our future and can’t wait to go on this journey with you.
Thank you! Thank you for shopping small and supporting our company. Thank you for knowing that you are not just shopping the cutest & comfiest apparel, but you are helping make a difference for someone else with the kindness dominos your purchase starts. This is so much more than a small business to us, it is our legacy. It is the footprint we hope to leave behind along with all of your footprints of kindness next to ours. We truly hope you walk the walk of kindness and use us as your support along the way.
We are so thrilled for what is ahead of us, so proud for what is behind us, and so honored for who is beside us; our MST family!
(Chest bumps for Mama Said Tees & kindness!)