fraud

I have a small handful of clients for whom I design fancy holiday cards each year. They know I’m a mom, but I try to be as professional as possible when working with them – dressing up for meetings, taking phone calls  away from the children, responding to emails promptly – so that they know me more for being a stationery-designer than a stay-home-mom. 

Last year, at about this time, I was in christmas card production mode. It is quite often a stressful time for me as I do the bulk of my business during the month of November and I’m not so good at balancing work and home – especially when I work at home. I had made just about every mistake possible when ordering my supplies and remember one night getting the the point when I just wanted to give up.

I felt like such a fraud.

Who did I think I was creating cards for these people? If they only knew I was just a frazzled mommy working late at night, sitting on a milk-stained couch watching ‘While You Were Sleeping’ putting their elaborate cards together. If only they knew how tiny my office was. How amateur my graphic design skills were. How little I knew about running a business.

I cried. I prayed. I probably got in bed and sulked for a while before I fell asleep, woke up in the morning and pulled myself together.

I’m feeling a little bit like that right now.

It probably has something to do with the fact that it is mid-November and I’m in that same busy time of year producing cards.

This year, though, I have a blog. 

I love writing posts and creating projects, coming up with giveaways and sharing our home and family on here. A creativity has been awakened in me like never before and I feel like I am exactly where I am supposed to be.

But sometimes I feel like a fraud.

I’m afraid I present myself as this put-together, always cheerful, well-dressed, organized, ambitious, fabulous wife and super-mom. And on top of it all, a professional business owner. I’d like to think I’m these things. I’d really like you to think I’m these things.

But truth be told, I’m not quite there.

And maybe that’s just what I need to admit.

I work so hard to please, to appear professional, to have perfect graphics, a seamless shop, new and fresh ideas, quality products, interesting things to say or original projects to share.

But I think I lose a little bit of myself in that process.

I am just a regular girl.

A wife who loves her husband, but doesn’t always show it.

A mom who adores her babies, but runs out of patience.

A friend who cherishes her girls, but forgets to return calls.

A person so energized by being creative, but not without dry spells.

I am a homemaker who would rather rearrange furniture than dust it, repaint a bathroom than clean it, eat out than sit down and plan meals.

I’m just a regular girl with the privilege of designing cards for a living and encouraging and inspiring others on this blog. It is a blessing and brings me such pleasure but I think sometimes my expectations for myself can get a little out of control.  I’m working on that.

I thank you, sweet reader-friends, for allowing me to just be me – however mightily-imperfect this girl truly is.

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202 Responses to fraud

  1. Elaine Lovett November 24, 2014 at 11:06 am #

    You are Mighty Girl!! This Mother of five with a B. Tumor,as a single parent,understand what it takes to do what you do to make our worlds more interesting and pretty! Thank you!

  2. Meagan G. January 23, 2014 at 6:53 pm #

    I just read the post you wrote in 2010 about not wanting to be a fraud. I had to smile, you write so genuinely about being real and not really being perfect after all. Well, I am several years farther down the life timeline than you are (my kids are 21, 18, and 14) and I can assure you that by the time you are my age you will no longer feel the need to guiltily reveal that you are real. After a couple decades of the bumps and dings of adult life (even in the lives of those who seem to “have it all”), we come to the realization that EVERYONE is real and what we see on the surface is not all there is. Nowadays I feel I can look any person in the eye, even the ones who appear talented and fabulous, and just KNOW that they are real humans, with real histories, and real stories complete with ups and downs. The point I am trying to make is, don’t worry, those of us with a little more experience under our belts (i.e. ‘older’) never saw you as trying to pass yourself off as perfect; we knew you were a real woman with a real life—we all are, too. To me, you are clearly genuine!

  3. Alice October 20, 2013 at 7:58 pm #

    My grandmother taught me that it is not fair to compare our own everyday to the “Sunday best” of others. We usually see what other’s want us to see of them; at their best. Then we get our every day stuck in our heads.

  4. Sherry April 10, 2013 at 8:27 am #

    Wow!!!! Isn’t it great when you stumble upon something that you so needed to hear. I LOVE IT!!! Thank you for your honesty. :)

  5. Britton Howerton May 11, 2012 at 6:52 pm #

    I read this post and it was almost frightening how much you sound like me! Really, I feel this way often. And painting the bathroom instead of cleaning it… couldn’t agree with you more!!!! Thanks for sharing, for being so real.

  6. Kelly April 7, 2012 at 12:57 am #

    I just randomly clicked on this post. I know I must have read it when you first published it because I read ALL your posts…religiously (sorry God for not reading the Bible, like I read my favorite blog lady’s posts), but for some reason it really resonated with me tonight. I really needed this today. yesterday. this past week especially. Thank you for your words and for being so real.

  7. laurie August 2, 2011 at 4:52 am #

    It is now early August 2011 and I decided to click on “fraud” this early morning with the sun shining so brightly and the humidity broken (for now). I am an avid reader of your blog even though I’ve only posted a couple times. I love that your honesty comes through and you are not afraid to admit where you are in life….not physically but emotionally, as a mom, wife, friend. I read another’s blog post recently and the debate was whether to blog every day vs blogging when you have something to say. I read blogs where people’s integrity, honesty, and character come through not whether they post a beautiful write-up each day. Your words act as reminders to me that I don’t have to aim for perfection but do what I love and things will fall in place. You are a perfect not-perfect role model for me. Admitting that your life is not as put together as we like to think it is and we think ours should be. I believe that you, me, us, that don’t have the perfect life are the happiest of families because we see our faults and can live with them no matter what because we put our husband and kids before all else! Thank you for your honesty and being who you are!

  8. Melissa April 1, 2011 at 5:02 pm #

    you are me and i am u. i hear your words and i couldnt have said it better.

    off to be ‘fraudulent’ and design a program for a client when I’d rather be heading to my craft room to make more of your adorable ribbon flowers for which I dont know what I am going to do with them but I LOVE THEM!!! mybest, Melis

  9. Tricia Schleper March 17, 2011 at 12:06 pm #

    Emily-thank you for being so real. I know this was a while back but I have so enjoyed exploring your site and experimenting with your projects. I don’t know you but I do see you as all put together with somehow more time in your day than I seem to have (and I only have two little ones). Your site is an encouragement to me b/c I love being creative but don’t make the time to do it. So it was encouraging to hear you say “I am a homemaker who would rather rearrange furniture than dust it, repaint a bathroom than clean it, eat out than sit down and plan meals.” That is TOTALLY ME!! I want to live in a magazine where nothing is ever out of place or dirty but I can rearrange and redecorate whenever I want…I like to make things look pretty even though you might not ever know by the way my house looks! Thanks for being real and for allowing us in on a little of your own insecurities that if we are all honest we all have as women. Jesus bless you as you continue to spur others on to be who they are!

  10. Abbey Lewis March 10, 2011 at 10:51 am #

    This may have been a post from many months ago, but I am new to blogs and your blog is my favorite! I could not have read this post a better time for me… I know it is about you, but it really spoke to me and how I feel most of the time! I want to thank you and say that yet again, you have given me motivation and inspiration!!! I have so many things I want to do, and be when I ‘grow up’ (even tho I’m almost 35 ;))) All we can do is remind ourselves to breath, pray and keep moving forward!!!!! Thanks so much!

  11. Sherringa February 27, 2011 at 11:18 am #

    I happened on your blog today, and I am not sure how. I think God sent me here. I love honest folks like you, it makes me love your blog already and I have just jumped around on a few of your posts. Keep up the good work , I will be sharing you with my friends.

  12. Maggie Nunez January 22, 2011 at 11:21 pm #

    The more i read your blog the more I am inspired by you and by your honesty…I too feel the same way many a times..as a teacher, wife and mom…thank you for being so genuine because through your candidness we learn that it is ok to just be real sometimes…not perfect but real.

  13. Jennine Lupo January 21, 2011 at 10:55 am #

    Wow – that was one of the most honest posts I’ve ever seen. And I can totally relate to you. Thanks for admitting how much we all think we suck – operative word there being ‘think’. Because guess what? YOU ARE AMAZING!

  14. Hannah Kelley January 10, 2011 at 1:00 pm #

    I just read this, and totally related. I too am trying to juggle the mom, wife and professional…being a private piano teacher, but also love to explore my creative side. Thanks for being real.

  15. Barbara January 4, 2011 at 7:18 am #

    I agree with you on all points above. So nice to hear someone else has the same thoughts as me. The way you write them makes them sound …well….normal and ok, which they are! Thanks, I needed that today!

  16. Carolyn December 11, 2010 at 8:57 am #

    first of all i love your blog and your designs.
    second of all i do not like reading the perfect blogs of perfect women who have perfect marriages, perfect children, perfect homes, gourmet talent, always smiling and skip-to-my-lou lives. Those kind of women leave me feeling like “a fraud” and a basket-case!
    I’d much rather be (cyber) “friends” with bloggers who are brave enough to believe in themselves but not afraid or ashamed to admit that they are imperfect… and know how to keep their sense of humor inspite of it all.
    that is the kind of woman i find most inspirational and interesting.

    thank you for sharing, i really love visiting!

  17. Anna Marie Farmer December 5, 2010 at 11:50 am #

    Emily!
    This is Anna Marie, Lindsay Miller’s friend. I’ve been reading your blog for a while and wanted to let you know how great I think it is.! Emily, your site/blog is so beautiful and your honesty and thoughts are so real, I really love what you share. I’ve done your wreath project (w/ book pages) and it was so fun! I made one for me, and one for my mom. Linds and I are getting together to craft this weds and are going to make some of your holiday projects. Anyway, just wanted to say that I really love your blog and your approach and it’s been really encouraging to watch you build it. I love how you follow your own aesthetics and create such beauty. thanks for sharing who you are with the world! xo
    anna marie

  18. Carrie December 1, 2010 at 5:57 pm #

    I feel everything you wrote in this post and I got tears in my eyes while reading it. Thank you for making me feel ‘normal’ and for inspiring me through your blog. Now I’m going to decide where to eat out while I leave the vacuum in the center of the living room, and the furniture askew surrounded by a million boxes of Christmas decorations.

  19. Julie November 26, 2010 at 7:39 pm #

    Thanks for the honesty. A nice post. I think we all feel this way.
    ~ Julie

  20. Cathy November 26, 2010 at 5:52 am #

    More reasons why I love to visit your blog…thanks for being so humble and sincere…once again, you inspire!

  21. LimoncelloSTYLE November 25, 2010 at 6:20 pm #

    Oh, I SO hear you on this….could have written it verbatim myself (except I only have 1 child :)

    Our clients believe in us; we need to too.

    Miriam from limoncellostyle.com & flor.com/blog
    Aka coasting anon from otherpiecesofme.com

  22. Michele November 21, 2010 at 8:18 pm #

    Thanks for being real and sharing your heart. I can relate. Fraud is such a nicer word than poser, which is what I often use to describe myself when I feel like I’m just faking it. I think you’re the real deal because of post like this. It’s encouraging to let others know you struggle stuff that we all struggle with and it’s normal.

  23. Deana November 21, 2010 at 7:32 am #

    This post couldn’t have come at a better time for me. As I was working on a wholesale order for salon boutique. I was up until 1am trying to finish it. It’s the only quite time I get to work with3 kiddos. Iwas tired and thinking why am I doing this….is it worth it? Do they realize I am this lone woman hand making all these items??? Then I saw this and realized there are many of us, trying to realize our dreams, own a small businesss, be a mom, wife, daughter, friend. And it works sometimes not as flawlessly, as others. But we keep going improving, learning as we go. Thanksfor being real. D

  24. Liz November 20, 2010 at 11:07 pm #

    It is the weekend, and I’m just now catching up on my inbox. I haven’t read all 100+ comments, so I’m probably repeating what others have said already–you are only human and you are amazing, certainly not a fraud. You inspire so many women (myself included) and we love that you are real. That said, I frequently feel similar–like I’m faking it and all the people at work who say, “wow you just do it all” really have no idea how much is still left to be done. How I was up until 2 AM the night before my daughter’s birthday making decorations, that I have every intention of finding time to bake one of these days, and the amount of dust collecting on my crafty stuff because I 1. am having trouble finding the time and 2. am scared that whatever I decide to try will look terrible an amatuer. So I have no sage advice, just a note to let you know that you are not alone in your feelings but that you are truly amazing, so try to not be too hard on yourself (perhaps I’ll take my own advice). :)

  25. Mindy November 20, 2010 at 8:56 pm #

    thanks, it is nice to hear someone else say it. seems that there is always someone who wants to to try to one up you or make you feel like you need to do better. trying to keep that out of my life because it is not worth it and they are not a real friend.

  26. krista November 20, 2010 at 2:37 pm #

    I love this post…I think you speak for so many of us and the way we feel. Thanks for putting yourself out there…it’s very inspiring:)
    Krista

  27. Lauren Liess November 20, 2010 at 7:49 am #

    loved this post… i think so many of us feel this way & it’s great to see it voiced. but you’re SOOOOO not a fraud and the proof’s in your beautiful work.
    xoxo,
    lauren

  28. Kim November 20, 2010 at 1:26 am #

    You are a regular down to earth kind of girl who happens to also be beautiful and talented and posses social grace. Such a good mommy (even if cheese sticks and chocolate milk is lunch or you have your children watch Max and Ruby while you write something on your blog – OK please tell me that you do that – sometimes! lol) and you have such a sunny disposition too! Maybe you don’t feel inspired or inspirational every day through your blog, as a mommy, wife, friend etc., but you still inspire because the real moments or the moments where you are feeling vulnerable make you inspirational too! It is a human thing to doubt yourself every now and then – everyone does – those that say they don’t are not being honest with others or themselves. You are real. You. are. not. a. FRAUD! But the title got my attention ;) I have not made a comment in awhile because life is a little crazy at the moment but I do read all the things you write – your blog rocks Emily!

  29. Kelly Meeks November 19, 2010 at 11:20 pm #

    Its so freeing to just admit our imperfection isn’t it? Trying to fake it and pretend like we have it all together is such a heavy weight! Thanks for keepin it real. :)

  30. shannon knight November 19, 2010 at 4:05 pm #

    LOVE LOVE LOVE your blog, your style, and know that we are all feeling the same way. Thank you!

  31. Emily J November 19, 2010 at 3:48 pm #

    i adore your authenticity and your creativity and the way you articulate your heart. thank you for sharing… i may have had a few tears, and a few giggles reading this post and the last as my mom is forever dusting my home and telling me i need to be more sanitary, I discovered 14 voicemails this morning, just yesterday bought the double pack of voluminous mascara (on sale at target, ps) as it is THE best, Heaven was my first perfume in 7th grade, and one of my favorite reminders of late is to not compare my insides to others’ outsides, as the Lord says I am fearfully and wonderfully made and so very unique. settling into the fact that I am only ever going to measure up to ME is a refreshing thing. and the grace god gives is abundant and sufficient. praying for you in this season!

  32. keely aka LKP November 19, 2010 at 2:27 pm #

    thank you for your honesty. i see accomplished women such as yourself and think “how do they do it?” or “where did i go wrong?” or “how can i be less frazzled?”…your voice today is refreshing and truly helps me feel more comfortable in my skin and in my lot in life. much gratitude to you for today! ::hugs::

  33. Tiffany from HOLIDAY November 19, 2010 at 1:45 pm #

    just found you via Julie at Milk & Honey and love you already, without looking around yet. and how sweet is your mother-in-law’s comments? this is so refreshing. as a working mom who would love to start my own business but created a blog in the meantime…i feel the same. running on empty, wishing we could do and give more, but want to present ourselves as though we’ve got it all down. i bet you have lots to be thankful for this year! can’t wait to look at your blog & cards, etc. xo warmly, tiffany

  34. Ashley November 19, 2010 at 1:41 pm #

    I think the fact that you ARE real makes you all the more appealing to both your blog readers and your clients. It’s hard to expose yourself to the world and feel good at the end of the day as you consider your flaws…but we all have them! You rock, girl. A favorite from Velveteen Rabbit:

    “What is REAL?” asked the Rabbit one day, when they were lying side by side near the nursery fender, before Nana came to tidy the room. “Does it mean having things that buzz inside you and a stick-out handle?”

    “Real isn’t how you are made,” said the Skin Horse. “It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but REALLY loves you, then you become Real.”

    “Does it hurt?” asked the Rabbit.

    “Sometimes,” said the Skin Horse, for he was always truthful. “When you are Real you don’t mind being hurt.”

    “Does it happen all at once, like being wound up,” he asked, “or bit by bit?”

    “It doesn’t happen all at once,” said the Skin Horse. “You become. It takes a long time. That’s why it doesn’t happen often to people who break easily, or have sharp edges, or who have to be carefully kept. Generally, by the time you are Real, most of your hair has been loved off, and your eyes drop out and you get loose in your joints and very shabby. But these things don’t matter at all, because once you are Real you can’t be ugly, except to people who don’t understand.”

  35. Lindsay kinnick November 19, 2010 at 1:14 pm #

    I can’t help but say this sounds like Jerry Bridges (my husband and I work with the Navigators). He speaks often of ‘speaking the Gospel to yourself daily’. And my, oh, my. Do I ever need it! Thank you for speaking the gospel to yourself and to all of blog friends. I pretty much like you & your heart & your many talents. :)

  36. Sara November 19, 2010 at 12:10 pm #

    Oh, how I feel for you! I too am a mother/wife/business owner. I have the opportunity to work at home as a freelance graphic designer. I get to take care of my almost-3-year-old and 16-month-old, and am expecting another come June. All the while, my hard-working husband, who is a commercial airline pilot, works away from home 4-5 days a week. Sometimes the world just spins, and I can’t decipher which hat I’m wearing, or sometimes how many I can fit on my head at once. But I am so blessed to be able to have a creative outlet and to have a husband and family that understands if I don’t have that creative outlet, I’d just go bonkers. Sometimes the laundry sits, the dishes don’t get washed, and the kids stay in pjs until 3 pm. But they are loved and happy, and that’s all that matters. Keep plugging away at what you are called to do!

  37. Paige November 19, 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    Just keep in mind…we expect way more of ourselves than anyone else expects from us. Have a great day!

  38. Nonna November 19, 2010 at 11:17 am #

    I love you Emily! The beautiful wife to my son and mother of my sweet grandbabies. What a gift you are to me. Nonna

  39. SARAH WOOD November 19, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    well! you just made me cry! you’re the best.

  40. Michele B. November 19, 2010 at 9:12 am #

    not a fraud. a FAVORITE! I think we all feel that way more than we’d like to admit, and get caught up in craziness more than we should. From the other end of this blog, you are the heroine…looking adorable, managing your home and creating (and finding the time to share) beautiful things, all while loving God and your family..so, no, not a fraul AT ALL!

  41. kate November 19, 2010 at 8:47 am #

    Just read this – and you’re already inundated with consolers – but just let me remind you that most of those “real” professionals closed their front door with their bed unmade, curlers on the bathroom counter and dishes in the sink. The problem you have is that your life is seamless – no shut doors for you working at home. Everything will look better when you get some more sleep!

  42. Alicia November 19, 2010 at 8:32 am #

    Yes! Me too. I know…

  43. Jennifer November 19, 2010 at 7:54 am #

    I LOVE LOVE that you are so real that you can post this. In fact, it takes a really confident, put-together person to do a post like this. Rather than admitting your failures, you are showing us that you are NORMAL! I love that you are willing to let us see that because so many people in this world are so worried about appearances that it is refreshing to be able to read a post like this and feel like a kindred spirit. I have huge expectations for myself too and feel like I am always failing in some way or another but I AM NOT…it is just what I am putting on myself. You put my feelings into words so beautifully that I want to print your post and give it out to all my friends. Your post a few months ago where you included the “I can not do it all” posters totally empowered me. I put your link on my facebook page and printed those suckers out to frame for my sewing room…lol. You would not believe (or maybe you would) the amount of comments and “hurrahs” you got in the FB comments. :) I tend to lose focus so much and forget that my Heavenly Father loves me for being His child and not for all the things I do…for who I AM in Him. Thank you for being a real girl and reminding me of that. :)

  44. deb mills November 19, 2010 at 7:52 am #

    you’re not a fraud at all… you’ve just a normal person, with all the self-doubts and human frailties that we all have at times. and thank goodness. how could we all measure up to perfection? enjoy your blog. thanks for sharing your creativity, your idea, and your human side.

  45. Heather November 19, 2010 at 6:50 am #

    Posts like this make you a real person, not some paper figure I can’t relate to. Truth resonates, which you can see from the volume of comments you got from this. Thank you for your transparency. Putting your insecurities out there for the world to see is scary.

  46. a little luxe November 19, 2010 at 5:22 am #

    What a wonderful post. I was sent over here by Julie at Milk and Honey Home. You took the words right out of my mouth…. having just started a new interior design business I definitely feel frazzled most of the time and think ” i have no idea what I’m doing”, the business side anyway. But I guess we all figure it out eventually ( hopefully? ha ha) This is what I love about bloggers…. all so honest and real. Thank you for that heartfelt post.

    Jennifer

  47. tammy November 18, 2010 at 11:45 pm #

    Emily~
    I hope you did not write this because of our bible study today. You are awesome at what you do and I always so admire you and wonder how you do it all. Yet , the thing I appreciate about you the most is that YOU are REAL and yet have style, class, talent and most importantly love the Lord and never compromise your values. You are far from a FRAUD! Thanks for sharing your heart and for being such a beautiful inspiration.

  48. Catherine November 18, 2010 at 11:44 pm #

    thanks and ditto (except for the stationary designer/business owner part).

  49. marci November 18, 2010 at 11:22 pm #

    ummm other than the card making you could have stolen this post from just about any woman out there i think, including myself. we put too much pressure on ourselves to be everything and it just isn’t possible. it’s good you can see it though..it helps! but know that you are not alone!!!

  50. Jen November 18, 2010 at 10:43 pm #

    You are a beautiful woman. Always love to hear your real voice

  51. Erin November 18, 2010 at 10:20 pm #

    Thank you for your honesty, Emily. Your words resonate with me and I am grateful you voiced them aloud. :)

  52. Rachel November 18, 2010 at 10:02 pm #

    Well articulated. I think you should cone be a guest speaker for the Junior High AVID class I teach. Young girls – and boys – can benefit from your real life. I mean it.

  53. Becky November 18, 2010 at 9:54 pm #

    Here’s the great news..you are completely and totally NORMAL :) Thank you for your honesty. I think every woman can relate to everything that you speak of here and it’s okay. There’s a quote I often think of, “You can do anything, but not everything” and I think it’s as simple as that :) Thank you for your inspiration. Because of you I have wanted to be creative the past several months and I so appreciate you and your wonderful blog!
    Becky :)

  54. Merry November 18, 2010 at 9:48 pm #

    You are loved with an everlasting love, and He is Who you are found in. No fraud. Abide in Him… and you rock in my book.

  55. Deidre November 18, 2010 at 9:28 pm #

    What a perfectly lovely and honest posting…that I TOTALLY connect with…I actually feel as if I could have written it myself, besides the card business. Bless your honesty…I needed to read that and be okay with my crazy little life and crazy little holiday season. THANK YOU!!

  56. Nicki November 18, 2010 at 8:40 pm #

    I have to agree with the other comments…you aren’t a fraud at all. You are human and it’s ok if you aren’t on the top of your game every day. You have a beautiful blog and are so creative. You are truly a lucky lady that gets to be at home with your kiddos as well as have a business that you love. You have inspired me to bring out more of my creative side…I don’t know exactly how you did it as I was starting to lose faith in my abilities, but you did. You have many talents and it’s perfectly ok to not be put together and perfect all the time…that’s what makes your blog every better…you are being YOU and there is no need to feel bad about it.

  57. Lynne November 18, 2010 at 8:27 pm #

    You are not guilty of fraud, you are guilty of being an amazingly creative, caring, sharing, honest, loving and giving person. The {qualities} that make a great Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister and Friend! You know I love your blog!!!

  58. Traci November 18, 2010 at 8:20 pm #

    SUCH a great post! I’m so thankful that you were honest and transparent…because honestly that’s how I always viewed you. Put together super-mom. Something that I could never be. It’s so refreshing to hear another mom just lay it all out there. There really should be MORE of that in this world! Then maybe us moms could stop beating ourselves up for not measuring up! Thanks!

  59. erica November 18, 2010 at 8:17 pm #

    I adore your website, when everything is “taken care of” at the end of the day, I love coming on and getting ideas to make my home cosy, stylish, and oh so wonderful! Thank-you!!

  60. Heidi November 18, 2010 at 8:16 pm #

    You’re no fraud… you’re human and you fill your shoes perfectly! You actually commented on a photo once that showed your chipped finger nail polish and I remember thinking… hmmm, she is being so real about who she is… I guess it’s not just me! I work from home as well while trying to balance all the other plates I’ve got spinning at the same time. I hope you find peace in knowing that so many of us carry the same types of burdens… you handle it all with grace! God Bless:)

  61. michelle November 18, 2010 at 7:30 pm #

    thank you for being so transparent!!! reading this post was like a big sigh of relief, b/c I’m not alone in having those same exact feelings. not that i’m a great designer like you (oh, how i wish!!!) but just in everyday aspects of life…thank you for being that voice for all of us! :)

  62. Marcella Cannon November 18, 2010 at 7:14 pm #

    I know what you mean…. i hear that accusing voice in my head sometimes….I think it is the voice of the enemy….don’t believe it! You are an amazing person and loved by many, especially God!!!

  63. Jo November 18, 2010 at 6:34 pm #

    This is called life and many can relate ~ add my name to the list! Love the fact that you are just keeping in real.

    Jo

  64. Cindy November 18, 2010 at 6:24 pm #

    Thanks for being so real. Love your blog.

  65. kelly November 18, 2010 at 5:20 pm #

    glad to know your NORMAL! we all try and uphold this image but really everyone just wants to see reality, with some pretty added in!

  66. pve November 18, 2010 at 5:02 pm #

    Good to know you are human with imperfections and flaws! Wishing you a nice cup of tea and a hug.
    pve

  67. brandi November 18, 2010 at 4:56 pm #

    I applaud you for having the courage to admit your flaws, especially on such a broad forum such as your blog. I find myself feeling the same way at times. Know that you are not alone, and your courage to speak on this has helped many readers. Take care and thank-you! I wish you the very best…

  68. Susanne November 18, 2010 at 4:54 pm #

    Oh good…you’re normal!! Thanks for your willingness to be so honest and open. That is more beautiful and appealing than letting us think you’re Superwoman. And now we know…you’re just like the rest of us. *phew! You’re doing an excellent job being the wife-mama-designer-friend-blogger that He created you to be.

  69. Trish November 18, 2010 at 4:48 pm #

    Hi Emily,
    I would say that you are the ultimate sucess…If your feeling completely frazzled & experiencing lots of mess, stress & all sorts hic- cups & your clients only see a well oiled machine that delivers a quality product,than I would say you are the ULTIMATE PROFESSIONAL & thats the best sort of business to buy from. On the other hand I completely sympathise with the exhaustion & helplessness that comes with being a working mum!!
    Cheers

  70. Katherine November 18, 2010 at 4:24 pm #

    So lovely to hear this – because you know then I can accept who I am too. A mum juggling a part-time job as well as my husband, two kids, a home, plus my desire to create and now starting to share my creations with others – you give me the confidence to go on.

  71. Aimee@ the Functional Space November 18, 2010 at 4:18 pm #

    Emily, Thank you so much for sharing!! I hope this has allowed you to let it go a little and feel better about where you are in the world right now. I’ve been completely racked with doubt and insecurity about my work as a designer and about my life as a wife and about my home and about my friendships, etc, etc, and I don’t even have the extra burden/love of being a mom. Thought I’m a relatively new reader I (clearly like a lot of others) think you are one talented lady and enjoy your blog immensely. Here’s to hoping we all figure out how to get through those feelings that are wrong and only hold us back!

  72. Shellie November 18, 2010 at 3:09 pm #

    Wow! It’s so nice to read my thoughts from someone else…you don’t feel so alone. You are not a fraud but an inspiration and a blessing to me! Love your blog…it’s my mini-vacation from my crazy world!

  73. Victoria Hopkins November 18, 2010 at 3:06 pm #

    Emily, you are NOT a fraud, you are a fabulous creative woman with a generous soul. YOU GO GIRL!!!!

  74. Carolyn November 18, 2010 at 3:00 pm #

    I just discovered your blog recently and immediately thought, “I want to BE her!” But not because I thought you were perfect. :) Simply because you have a beautiful style, a refreshingly honest and positive nature, and a heart for Jesus. Thanks for sharing this–I like you even more now!

  75. Allison Wollenhaupt November 18, 2010 at 2:47 pm #

    I just found your website and I LOVE what you do! Creativity oozes from you, and it’s so inspiring! Thank you for the sweet honesty of this post – I will now be a follower of your work!

  76. rachel November 18, 2010 at 2:39 pm #

    Emily,
    You are not alone. I am a stay at home mom, and i prefer to go to lunch with friends, do fun projects, and leave the dusting for another day. I really enjoy your blog, and you can complain if you feel like it because it is YOUR BLOG. Please continue to keep it real. I wish people who leave negative comments would just stop reading your blog. Life is too short and sometimes we all need to vent. You are a very talented lady and keep up the good work!!

  77. Wendy @ The Shabby Nest November 18, 2010 at 2:34 pm #

    Oh my goodness. I completely identify with you on this. I have felt like this so often in my life (well, to be honest, I still feel like this much of the time.) And then when something goes wrong, or I mess up on something, all it does is validate the feeling of being a fraud…of pretending to be something I’m not. And you described me to a “t” right here.. I am a homemaker who would rather rearrange furniture than dust it, repaint a bathroom than clean it, eat out than sit down and plan meals. Thank you for sharing your humanity with us. It is validating to hear things like this. ;-)

  78. Ashley November 18, 2010 at 2:32 pm #

    Thank you: http://carbonattofam.blogspot.com/2010/11/inspirational-fraud.html

  79. Melissa Martindale November 18, 2010 at 2:29 pm #

    I read your blog, and almost cried…I know how you feel. Minus the successful business, and polished professional part. I wonder sometimes what people think I am, I only post the happy moments. The majority of the time I’m beating myself up for not having enough patience with my sweet husband, and precious baby girl. I’m constantly tearing myself down for not having achieved certain goals by this point in my life, and most days I wonder if my husband would have been happier with someone who is more accomplished. I know they’re my own issues, but it’s exhausting; and not something I post about. Thank you for being so candid, and so honest, and for being a real girl. I really needed to hear that…

  80. Rebekah November 18, 2010 at 1:50 pm #

    I think we all feel that way sometimes. I am all of those things myself — minus the business. It’s posts like these that make me feel like the women writing the blogs I look so forward to reading aren’t just strangers out in a virtual reality. A post like this makes me feel like I’m hearing from a friend, someone who trusts me with the truth that she is not perfect — as I am not perfect. And when my friends feel free to admit to me that they struggle, it reminds me that my struggles aren’t so crazy. And I need to be reminded of that on a pretty regular basis. It’s not fraud to not be perfect. It’s human.

  81. Kimberly November 18, 2010 at 1:40 pm #

    Love your candid honesty. Thanks for sharing this. I think we’d *all* prefer to appear “put together” to others, no? But you – and the rest of us readers, too – are human beings. I struggle with finding that balance of being real with others, and yet striving for perfection. Often must be prompted by God that it’s the heart condition that is most important.

    Saying a quick prayer for you now as your work hard this time of year and seek balance in your many roles.

  82. Lemonade Makin' Mama November 18, 2010 at 1:26 pm #

    I love this because people tell me all the time that I make it look like my life is perfect. In fact, someone told me that just today, and I replied, “My life is anything but perfection, nor do I have any desire to give that impression! Who wants a perfect life anyway? My thought, it doesn’t have to be perfect, but it certainly doesn’t hurt to have everything pretty in the midst of the imperfection, right?” I love that I’m not the only one who thinks this way. Thanks for being real. I enjoy your blog so much, though I don’t comment often.
    Blessings,
    Sasha

  83. Casey November 18, 2010 at 1:22 pm #

    You sound an awful lot like me. And I feel much the same way right now. Great post, and great blog. Cheers from a very devoted reader — thanks for taking the time out of your busy schedule to write your blog and share your wonderful thoughts and ideas with the world. :)

  84. Amoreena November 18, 2010 at 1:20 pm #

    Thanks for sharing your heart. They are words I need to remind myself of daily.

  85. Katie {Katie Company} November 18, 2010 at 1:06 pm #

    This is such an honest post. I don’t know one creative person that doesn’t feel like a fraud sometimes. I think that is one thing that holds me back a lot is that I am afraid people will THINK I am a fraud.

    Sometimes we just have to close our eyes and jump and realize that not everyone is perfect at HOW they do something (such as run a creative business). What matters is that it makes you happy (even through the stressful times).

    Hey, everyone goes through a dry spell. You are not alone!

  86. Clair November 18, 2010 at 12:57 pm #

    You’re no fraud. You are just good at presenting your most positive qualities. I myself, and much to my husbands chagrin, would rather try a new furniture arrangement than do housework. Chin up! We all feel like we are not good enough from time to time. What would you tell a friend who might be feeling the way you feel right now? Tell that to yourself!

  87. Mandy November 18, 2010 at 12:55 pm #

    so true for all of us!

  88. Milk and Honey Home November 18, 2010 at 12:54 pm #

    Do you mind if I link to this post tomorrow? If any of my readers don’t know your blog (I am sure they do already!!) I want them to read this. If you get a sec let me know if that is ok. Thanks

  89. Priscilla November 18, 2010 at 12:49 pm #

    Oh, Emily! Forget about the picture tips post! I’m sorry to demand even more of you! If I was there, I’d give you a hug, offer to make you hot chocoate (that helps me), and tell you that it’s gonna be ok. I think you are so fabulous! I’m a Jesus lovin’-wife-mom-business owner, and – anything else I left out, too! It’s so hard to do all and be all. Hang in there – “and it CAME to PASS.”

  90. Gina November 18, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    You are REAL and that is why I look forward to stopping by every day! I adore you!! Thank you for sharing your life with all of us!!

  91. House mouse November 18, 2010 at 12:48 pm #

    Your posting made me cry for all of us amazing mothers/wives/friends who strive to bring our everyday lives to a more beautiful, dazzling place. It takes so much work. For every perfect meal I put on the table there is a mac n’ cheese-tater tot night. I love giving myself a break and remembering that my kids and best friend for a husband adore me whether I am wearing my stained pjs or my best outfit. They see me and that is most beautiful and authentic on its own. Your blog is even more precious to me knowing that you struggle with this balance too. You inspire me every single day. I have your projects all over my house and I can’t wait to see what is next.

  92. Milk and Honey Home November 18, 2010 at 12:45 pm #

    I love this post. Thank you! Love you for being you.

  93. Michelle Rodeno November 18, 2010 at 12:45 pm #

    Wow! You’re honesty (and fellow commenters) means the world to me! It does my heart and soul so good to hear other women talk about everything that I’m feeling and it’s going to be ok. Take a giant breather and let those negative feelings go. We are all here to listen.

  94. Jill SWANK November 18, 2010 at 12:44 pm #

    Amen and props to you for being so honest. I can say I feel the same way as a pro photographer at 24! I sit with my puppies curled around me at night, editing photos and dreaming of having a full studio that is clean and crisp looking. But for now I am content with sitting on the couch with the things I love most sleeping on my lap, keeping my eyes open long enough to edit one more photo.

  95. KC November 18, 2010 at 12:42 pm #

    This is why you are my best friend. You are honest, real, inspiring, creative, fun, and well, you don’t have it all together … and that my friend is what makes you Emily. And, Emily is beautiful.

  96. amy November 18, 2010 at 12:38 pm #

    I do decorative finishes and I have been known to call myself a “faux, faux finisher”. I get what mean about sometimes feeling like a fraud.

  97. Salina November 18, 2010 at 12:27 pm #

    I hope you are so encouraged by all of these comments. The blog world does paint this “gotta have it all together” picture sometimes doesn’t it. Your transparency is so refreshing, and your heart behind what you do is exactly why I like to follow your blog on a daily basis. Thank you thank you. You’ve “released” a number of readers who compare themselves and compete with what they read in a blog post. Your heart, more than your talent, is an inspiration to all of us.

  98. Beth B November 18, 2010 at 12:21 pm #

    Ummm Barbara.. Did you lose your compassion or understanding? Do you expect to ‘take’ all the time and not be inspirational? What a sad and disappointing comment for you to make.
    I hope most of the comments posted are supportive and not snarky..

  99. Beth B November 18, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

    I have felt the same way many times. Now I have thrown going into school full time and being in a wonderful relationship. :/

    Take a deep breath. Give yourself a break. DO NOT try to multi-task and concentrate on the task at hand. This mantra has been helping me this season. :)
    Big hugs.. You are amazing for putting this blog together.. one that I read as soon as it hits my inbox!

  100. Lauren November 18, 2010 at 12:05 pm #

    We’re ALL imperfect! But you are also INSPIRING! I discovered your blog two weeks ago and already have done 3 of your wonderful projects! Your flower pins are this year’s teacher/girlfriend gifts! Thank you for being just the way you are!

  101. Adrianne November 18, 2010 at 11:59 am #

    Word. I don’t even know where to begin but you said it, sister. But you know what? I bet nobody had any idea till you said it. You come across as super professional, talented and with-it! But I know how you feel. :)

  102. Cindy November 18, 2010 at 11:56 am #

    And now… I heave a sigh of relief. I am not a blogger, and sometimes I feel inferior to those of you who work at home and blog like you have it all together all the time. *BREATHE* xo

  103. Shelley November 18, 2010 at 11:47 am #

    You are not at all a fraud! You’re a real person with a real life! Now, if only I could remind myself of that :) I too am having those nasty feelings creep up on me. I just need to remind myself that this too will pass. And, even though right now I feel like the world’s worst mommy, wife, daughter, and granddaughter; there are many, many times when I feel like the world’s best because they make me feel that way. That is what I’m going to start thinking on right now :)

    And, for what it’s worth, we all think you’re fabulous. Faults and all!!!

  104. kristin November 18, 2010 at 11:45 am #

    please cut yourself some slack and realize that your clients are no more perfect than you. your honesty is a reflection of your integrity. I run a small home-based photography business and make birth announcements, christmas cards, invitations and thank you’s for my clients. i lave dry spells. i have fears. i mess up. we all do. still, some people would prefer to go to someone who is going to put their heart and soul into their cards than getting them at a big box drug store that produces soul-less cards for $1.50 a pop. Even a few days later than planned because “production” has to be shut down for a feverish child or a must-see rerun of Charlie Brown’s Christmas special that you all watch together, or an over ambitious promise……hand made and individually designed beats mass produced every time. know that what you do is special. know that it’s okay to be imperfect and still be really good. striving for perfection is what makes your craft yours but don’t let it erase the perfection all around you: the messy house, the crying baby, the unshaven husband and the burnt cookies. everything is a work in progress.

  105. Colleen November 18, 2010 at 11:41 am #

    You are awesome, talented, fabulous and we all love you! I completely relate to your post. The main goal is for this to be fun, creative and exciting. When it’s not bringing you joy, tweak it until it does. That is what shines through to all of us, your joy and passion. That is what keeps us coming back everyday to read your blog, buy your products and want to follow and create every tutorial you have. We don’t love and admire you because you are perfect, we love you because you are real. You go Ms Jones!

  106. Anna November 18, 2010 at 11:40 am #

    What a great post. I can totally relate. Met someone for the first time in Target in passing – she was so thrilled that I was just a real mom. (I was overwhelmed that she knew who I was from our adoption story.) Dont we all struggle with these same issues? wanting to have it all together, striving, yet feeling like you dont quite measure up. I have learned that I am my own worst enemy and have to treat myself like I would others.

  107. Mel November 18, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    I, like so many others, can completely relate. And you know it is great to have high expectations for ourselves, believing we can achieve our goals…but it is also necessary to be a bit forgiving. This is what I struggle with. I will continue to work on the balance of my own high expectations and being generous with myself for the times I am just plan overstretched between work, family, and life. I hope the support you are receiving from your readers just reinforces your passion in what you are doing and I hope that you can understand that you ARE a true professional because you do recognize these things about yourself. Good luck!

  108. raizel November 18, 2010 at 11:21 am #

    That was just refreshingly real. Such honesty is hugely lacking in this world. thanks for working on excepting yourself completely and thru that giving others the permission to do the same…

  109. JoLynn November 18, 2010 at 11:12 am #

    I think we {stay-at-home moms who love to craft and do projects} can all relate to feeling this way at times. The truth is, we can’t be everything to everyone at all times. It’s all about balance. I’m still learning too. As long as you are able to recognize that at times you need to take a step back from something, or give up something, then I think you’ll be okay. Thanks for posting such an honest post.

    P.S. I love your comment about how you’d rather move the furniture around than dust it! Boy, can I relate to that one!! :)

  110. Sarah November 18, 2010 at 11:11 am #

    Thank you so much for this post! I just started seriously blogging and I have definitely battled those “Who am I to tell anyone how to design anything???” feelings myself. So glad to know I’m not the only one with moments of self-doubt. Keep doing what you’re doing and know that none of us expect perfection. You wouldn’t be so enjoyable to follow if you pretended to be anything other than yourself.

  111. susan November 18, 2010 at 11:09 am #

    i think so many of us struggle with the same thing but no one, no matter what it appears like has it ALL together ALL the time it’s just not possible. you are not alone! thanks for keeping it real! have a lovely day! susan

  112. Julia November 18, 2010 at 11:09 am #

    Oh sweet girl! And last year you were pregnant! Love you. Let’s hang out more, and keep it real :)

  113. Angie November 18, 2010 at 11:07 am #

    I’ve been wanting to start my own blog, but have no credentials other than a passion for beautiful looking spaces. Knowing you (with your fantastic style and talent) have similar insecurities gives me the confidence to move forward. You are not a fraud! You are a wonderwoman, who is also human, filled with all of the imperfections that goes along with that. Keep in mind– not to get too preachy– God made you. That makes you pretty darn special!

  114. Amy L. November 18, 2010 at 11:06 am #

    Oh how I love vulnerable transparency!! Thank you for taking a risk and being so very honest. As you can tell from these comments, you are loved in spite of you incorrectly thinking you were pulling the wool over our eyes. Anyone who is a Momma knows there are those days, and those seasons. I will pray for all of us Mommas during this crazy busy season; that we take the time to breathe deeply, love fully, and enjoy imperfections. Thank you again for showing us your imperfections. In fact, it’s those {perceived} imperfections that draw us closer.

  115. Tina November 18, 2010 at 11:06 am #

    Fraud no, busy mom, yes. I think most stay at home mommies can identify with you. We care so much about having the appearance of being well put together when in fact being a mom and having children is not a cookie cutter type job. There are always unexpected things that arise and being a mom just means we have a job that challenges us to adapt and go with the flow. Thank you for your honesty! Your blog is inspiring me to use my creativity and be a better mommy even when I feel like I’m a fraud too. I just have to remember that it’s ok if my kids have dried-on milk mustaches and didn’t get out of their jammies today as long as they’re happy!

  116. Julie November 18, 2010 at 11:04 am #

    Your honesty and humility is all too refreshing! Thanks for being real. God bless you.

  117. Alexis Wright November 18, 2010 at 10:59 am #

    Oops! I meant to write “I” feel that way many days!!!!!!

  118. Cindy November 18, 2010 at 10:58 am #

    That feels so real, and only makes you more endearing to those of us who follow your blog. I think many of us feel everyone is so much more together than we are, and putting it out there that you’re not perfect, frees us up to just be ourselves and be more open, and accept that we are just right just the way we are.

  119. Alexis Wright November 18, 2010 at 10:58 am #

    You are not alone!! You feel that way many many days!!! You are such an amazing talented woman!

  120. allison November 18, 2010 at 10:56 am #

    This post makes me like you even more:)

  121. Darlene Weir November 18, 2010 at 10:54 am #

    aren’t we all? the danger of blog land is… basically, it is not reality. It is whatever we want everyone to see. It is the window shopping of souls.
    But, when we are willing to bear truth, there is no fraud. Thanks for bearing truth. And truth is, so many bloggers -like you are!!- are filled with talent, while at the same time we fall short. AND, as you said in another post:
    I cannot do it all.

  122. kasey November 18, 2010 at 10:54 am #

    Crazy girl.
    Life is living….live it well;-)
    {by being you.}
    xo

  123. Carolyn Wilson November 18, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    I think that you are speaking for so many of us! I have just realized lately that my life is what it is right now…a crazy, busy, mess with 4 kids to keep up with. I think that admitting that really helped me. We have 6 Birthdays in our family in December, so I tend to get overwhelmed with it all too. This year I have vowed to slow down and enjoy the season, and I hope that you will be able to as well. I so enjoy keeping up with you, and it is nice to know your are “normal”. Thanks for the great blog!

  124. Jill McKee November 18, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    Oh Emily, you are so adorable! I feel the exact same way!! And I think so many other mom’s/business owners are in the same boat. Thank you for your honest post. I absolutely adore you.

  125. Courtney F November 18, 2010 at 10:52 am #

    Amen! Thank you x 1 million for this post. We’re all frauds, actually! How wonderful that you revealed your heart in such a raw way. No makeup, teeth unbrushed, bed head…

    Most of us gals put on this fake identity how we want to be seen without even realizing it, when our identity is really in Jesus. God has clearly blessed you with such amazing talents. Thank you for being such a great inspiration.

  126. B @ Simply B November 18, 2010 at 10:49 am #

    Such fabulous honesty! It’s what we all crave, to know that we’re not the only one feeling that way. I haven’t posted on my blog for over 2 weeks and my shop has been closed since the summer! But I have attended markets to sell my wares, held two birthday celebrations for 2 of my 3 kids, done the school run, looked after my sister’s 2 girls while she went away for 5 days etc etc etc. There’s always something, and we can only do so much, I think we all know that feeling. And after all… “those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.” x

  127. Amber Wendover November 18, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    Such a beautiful and touching entry. Thank you for sharing. I can surely relate … and I’m sure many others can too. Although don’t forget to give yourself some credit, that is well deserved. Hang in there, November is almost over! :)

  128. Ashley November 18, 2010 at 10:44 am #

    That’s why we like you so much :). You’re just another one of us, trying your best to be your best, and we can all totally relate.

  129. Tonia November 18, 2010 at 10:43 am #

    It’s only means you’re human. Fraud is such a strong word.

  130. Audrey November 18, 2010 at 10:43 am #

    Aren’t we all frauds? I am imperfect as well…thank you for sharing with your imperfect reader-friends…your vulnerability has dignity, and God will honor that….take care, Audrey

  131. jen shears November 18, 2010 at 10:42 am #

    You are NOT a fraud! But I do understand how much pressure we put on ourselves to be everything to everyone! I love all of your inspiration!!! Such happy emails in my inbox!!! :D

  132. lindsay November 18, 2010 at 10:39 am #

    your transparency is a breath of fresh air. praying for His peace for you… even if it’s in those few quiet moments in front of the tv late at night, hands immersed in glue dots… I pray that the few moments you get will be refreshing and enough.

  133. trish gibbs November 18, 2010 at 10:38 am #

    THANK YOU for your post. I just bawled reading it. I feal like this so much of the time. It is nice to know I am not alone. Funny, I am new to your blog in the last week and looked through it thinking “i wish I had it all together like she does”. Thanks for keeping it real :)

  134. Julie M. November 18, 2010 at 10:38 am #

    You are not a fraud. You are a hard working woman! You do great work and you are good at all of it. We can’t have it all, but we can push ourselves to go farther.

    And by the way, I’m not sure if you remember doing two prints for me, for my twins. I have them hanging in our play room (converted dining room for now) and they are just recently recognizing their own names. Yesterday, William said to me, “Mommy, that’s me!” and was pointing to his print. And the Marissa points, “That’s me!” I picked them up and they both pointed to their names and were so happy. I love those name prints in our playroom! Thank you for your great work.

  135. Annie November 18, 2010 at 10:34 am #

    Oh my … if you’re a fraud, then sign me up, ‘cuz so am I. But I don’t think that either of us are. I think we are just trying to be the best “me” we can be and sometimes other stuff gets in the way. And, no, not our families. ;) But life happens and when it does, the only thing that matters is how you deal with it. And just by writing what you’ve written here proves that not only are you NOT a fraud, but that you are an amazing woman doing her “thang” and doing it well! Keep your chin up and keep bringing us the good stuff! ;)

  136. Finding Home November 18, 2010 at 10:33 am #

    Thanks so much for such a real and relatable posting. I know I feel the same way. Add thoughtful writer to what you are as well. I agree with the post above, that is a card, or maybe it is to be framed on the wall to remind ourselves each day. Good luck getting it all done! With kindness, Laura

  137. Rebekah T November 18, 2010 at 10:32 am #

    Oh how I love honest people! It’s so refreshing to hear people being honest and letting the chips fall where they may. I so can relate to you and am so happy you shared your imperfections with each of us. There are just too many fake people out there these days. :) Happy Holidays. :)

  138. Pat November 18, 2010 at 10:31 am #

    Dear Emily, feel free to vent when you want. Many of us understand. I remember feeling the same way you do. I used to work at a church and I had to plan and coordinate the Christmas pageant, even directed it and wrote it once. I cried several times because I was so stressed out from trying to get a bunch of kids to cooperate, to getting all the details perfect AND xmas shopping, packing, mailing (military family) AND TRYING to create the perfect Christmas for my family. THEN, when it was all over I had to look forward to directing VBS in June. Balance is hard and sometimes we have to let go in some areas to be able to accomplish what we need to. It’s okay, it’s only temporary. Thanks for letting it all “hang out”. I love coming here for inspiration, by the way, and reading about your creative ideas.

    PS take a deep breath and know all us “regular girls” understand and send you love

  139. Sharon S November 18, 2010 at 10:31 am #

    Thank you for this post. I can completely relate to how you are feeling right now and in a sea of perfectly put together blog writers, it helps to know that you’re feeling the same way I do.

  140. tiffanyday November 18, 2010 at 10:30 am #

    you are so sweet! try not to be so hard on yourself – you are doing alot and you ARE doing it well. You inspire me and always bring a smile to my face and help my creativity alot. I never felt like or got the impression you were a fraud or that you were perfect. You are sharing you heart and gifts!!! And i think that most of us moms out here reading truly know we all have good days and not so good days – whether we blog about it or not. Its imprortant of us out here to give everyone the benefit of doubt and encourge each other!

    Being who we are is the best gift and blessing we can give to our families and friends!
    Have a great day Emily! :)
    xoTiffany

  141. melissa November 18, 2010 at 10:30 am #

    sweet emily, you just described me perfectly…except switch out the words “graphic designer” to event designer. yes, i feel absolutely exactly the same…especially at this time of year. i spend my mornings juggling children and returning emails, making professional calls, only to get frustrated with my little ones need me. it’s so difficult feeling tugged in so many ways, and knowing that nothing will change anytime soon. but at the same time, knowing that you’re doing exactly what you’re supposed to be doing, at the exact time that it’s all happening. i’m so blessed to be where i am, doing what i’m doing, but that doesn’t take away the difficulty of it all. anyway, just babbling about how i feel your “fraud”, just as severely, and am so grateful to be able to be real with other bloggy friends like you. thank you, friend, for being real.

  142. pamela November 18, 2010 at 10:29 am #

    Ditto.
    First, I applaud you for keeping up with your blog. I gave up on mine after two years earlier this year and I miss it. Although there are times when I wonder how I ever found time to post, it always helped me work through problems just like this. Sometime just putting your thoughts down gives great clarity.
    I have four kids, I am a design school drop out, I am doing holiday cards for friends right now and I feel the same way. I love your designs and think you are uber talented, formal education or not. And you are not alone!
    Try to remember that no matter how much you question your ideas they are probably better than anything your non-creative clients could come up with. There is a reason they pay you to design. Give yourself the credit you deserve!

  143. Tammy November 18, 2010 at 10:25 am #

    We think you are great! Good to hear other peoples struggles. I often feel like that as I pull my inventory out of our coat closet and packaging out of my bedroom closet.

  144. emily November 18, 2010 at 10:23 am #

    Thank you so much for sharing your imperfections. We all have them and we all try our best to hide them so the world will see us as “perfect” moms, wives, housekeepers, career women, etc. All the while we are just tyring to keep our heads above water! I am only a mother to one so I can only imagine the responsibilities that are in your hands, but I know you do a much better job at things than you give yourself credit for :) You are such an inspiration, thank you for reminding all of us that there is no such thing as being perfect…. and that is ok! :) Good luck with all of your beautiful Christmas Card Making :)

  145. Gayla November 18, 2010 at 10:22 am #

    Thank you for being REAL. I truly believe that being a SAHM is one of the hardest jobs, but obviously the MOST fulfilling and rewarding. And, when we add to that all of the daily to-dos and add business opportunities to that. … it is difficult to keep balance and the right perspective. If we are honest, we all struggle and feel the same way, but we continue on in love. Sometimes forgetting the to-do lists in order to remember the most impotant — the relationships in our lives.

  146. chasity November 18, 2010 at 10:21 am #

    so beautifully written ~ straight from the heart.
    your honesty shows through here…
    it something a lot of us feel.

    thanks for sharing your heart.

    hope you don’t stress too much and can enjoy this holiday season.

    chasity

  147. Eileen November 18, 2010 at 10:20 am #

    I am so there with you! It’s so hard to juggle it all, sometimes I feel like I am doing so many things but I am not doing any of them particularly well. It’s only made worse when I read blogs and articles and feel like “she’s doing it all so perfectly, why can’t I seem to manage it?”

    Thanks for keeping it real, I needed it today :)

  148. Lisa November 18, 2010 at 10:19 am #

    Funny thing is: You just created a card in itself:

    ~I am just a regular girl.

    A wife who loves her husband, but doesn’t always show it.

    A mom who adores her babies, but runs out of patience.

    A friend who cherishes her girls, but forgets to return calls.

    A person so energized by being creative, but not without dry spells.

    I am a homemaker who would rather rearrange furniture than dust it, repaint a bathroom than clean it, eat out than sit down and plan meals. ~

    Now design it!!

    Of ANY post of any blog that I have taken the time to read. This by far is my all time favorite! I stand up and applaud you for this truly honest post. I think it is adorable!
    I will pass it on to others that might be feeling like a fraud too. Truth be told, you are a busy mom and contributing to your family and keeping in touch with who you are as a person!
    Love it!
    Lisa

  149. Tessa November 18, 2010 at 10:17 am #

    sweet emily, you are a mother of 4 young children! the fact that you are able to have a business, a pretty home, a great blog and manage to look cute is astounding!! no fraud at all. i am always slightly in awe of anyone who has more than 2 children and is able to make it through the day with everyone still in one piece, dressed in clean clothes, and fed. go easy on yourself girl and take a little break from it all and just be a wife and mama for a few days after the card season is over. hugs from a former over-achiever and perfectionist.

  150. fancythis November 18, 2010 at 10:16 am #

    i think the thing that makes you so likeable is everything you just said. you DON’T have it all together. and that’s ok. because it is then that HE carries you.

  151. Angela November 18, 2010 at 10:13 am #

    What a lovely, refreshing post. Thank you for being so honest. I think we all feel this way – especially this time of year. You are not a fraud – you are real and wonderful.

  152. kayce hughes November 18, 2010 at 10:10 am #

    So well said. I feel the same way every day. The frauds are the ones who say that they can do it all and it is easy.

  153. Tara November 18, 2010 at 10:09 am #

    oh emily I think we have all felt this at some point or another…and you just spilled it all for us right here…of course you are just a regular girl, so much like the rest of us, maybe a wee bir more ambitious and talented, and that is what makes you so wonderful! Let yourself have those days, cause they just fuel the rest of the days when you know you can get it all done….but in the end we are all just girls…making mistakes, looking for love and finding life!

  154. ANTIQUECHASE November 18, 2010 at 10:07 am #

    Secrets out…. guess what? YOU’RE NORMAL. LOL great post by the way!

  155. Melissa Dodge November 18, 2010 at 10:03 am #

    How refreshing to know you are real!! I love your blog and creative ideas. They are all wonderful and fun, I look forward to seeing what you will post or creat next. You are awesome just the way you are, just a real girl!! Thanks!

  156. Jill November 18, 2010 at 9:58 am #

    I just had to hop on here and tell you that I don’t think you are a fraud at all. Let’s be real, every blogger is a little bit of a fraud. We move the junk out of the way before we take pics, we don’t post pics of ourselves in our ratty jammies with bedhead and no makeup even though we might’ve spent the whole day looking like that. :-) I really love your blog. I love how when you take pics of your outfits, there is sometimes a little one snuck into the bottom of the photo. And in those photos, you usually have a smile. We know where your heart is.

  157. Erin November 18, 2010 at 9:15 am #

    Wow, I needed to hear those words myself today. Thank you for sharing what’s on your heart. I feel the same way…often. And I too, am working on not letting my own expectations of myself get out of control. I love coming to your blog – it’s cozy, it’s inviting, and it’s always inspiring. Really.

  158. Sarah November 18, 2010 at 9:11 am #

    Amen & amen!

  159. Libby November 18, 2010 at 9:01 am #

    OMGosh! I too design stationary while being a busy mom. The struggle to balance where you are needed is so incredibly difficult. It’s as though you extracted the exact workds from my head that I’ve thought time & again! It’s normal to want to do it all and even more normal to not be able to. At the end of the day if we can look ourselved in the eye and know we did our best…that’s the best we can offer. Persistence and honesty will prevail no matter the circumstances. Thanks for having the confidence to share your thoughts and feelings with the rest of us here who love what you do!

  160. sheri November 18, 2010 at 8:48 am #

    uhm..yea. just, yea. get out of all of our heads already. Great blog, and i love your work. No fraud. Just perfection.

  161. valerie November 18, 2010 at 8:45 am #

    you are real! Yipee….sending you hugs and patience and remember to be good to YOU!

  162. Marissa November 18, 2010 at 8:41 am #

    Not fraud. Authentic. With different dimensions to ‘you”. You are not defined by one label or generality. So cry a little…be frustrated a little…and then hug your husband and children you love, have coffee with a friend and be the wonderfully creative person God made you to be. No worries, friend. Thanks for being you.

  163. elizabeth November 18, 2010 at 8:37 am #

    “I am a homemaker who would rather rearrange furniture than dust it, repaint a bathroom than clean it, eat out than sit down and plan meals.” authenticity – love it. you, ms. jones design co., rock.

  164. Jenn November 18, 2010 at 8:26 am #

    Can I please put those words in a cute frame and hang it in my bathroom so it will be seen at both the start and end of my day? AMEN!!!

  165. Lynda November 18, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    You sound so much like me! I have so many of the same habits. I think we put too much pressure on ourselves. I just love reading your blog and hopefully you know how super creative you are. Love all your craftiness! I ordered your monogram name plates and they are beautiful! Really, we just can’t do it all.

  166. WendyO November 18, 2010 at 8:15 am #

    Looks like, from the comments above, that you are in fine company. Although, I can’t quite relate. I have it all together, all of the time. I’m sure my kids would agree…wait, where are my kids?

  167. Melissa November 18, 2010 at 8:10 am #

    I think you are amazing – there is no need to be perfect.

  168. Susan @ Some Kind of Wonderful November 18, 2010 at 8:06 am #

    Nice to know that you aren’t alone and there are others that feel the same as you. Hang in there ;o)

  169. Krissie November 18, 2010 at 8:05 am #

    Loved this post! I just recently started reading your blog. You do great design work…. and that’s coming from someone who sits at a big old imac in a design studio office doing graphic design all day long. You are no more a fraud than I am … we’re the same… I love my job, but it is not my life, I am so many things besides a designer, and so are you, and that is good, it doesn’t make you a fraud. It just makes you a real person, which in my opinion makes for a better designer. :)

  170. Mary November 18, 2010 at 8:01 am #

    I have been reading your blog daily I get excited to see what you have! It’s nice to know that you’re normal and have doubts just like anyone else. I adore your projects and your words. So thank you for sharing this blog and your thoughts :) and you do have to admit to yourself… you are quite delightful and have super cute clothes!

  171. Ashley November 18, 2010 at 8:01 am #

    This is the most refreshing post I have read in a very long time. I often find myself so frustrated reading blogs of perfect wives and mothers that have full time jobs and smile juggling all the things going on in their lives. I was wondering if I was the only one who forgot to show my husband how much I love him? Or the only one who raised my voice at my children when my patience was at a low? Thank you for being honest. It’s comforting to know we are all human. Your blog is inspiring.

  172. Paulina J! November 18, 2010 at 7:54 am #

    I’m glad your normal!! Just the fact that you are a mom, wife, business woman, cook, maid, nurse, assistant (I can go on), makes you a superwoman. And just to let you know, this reader doesn’t expect perfection. You’re not a fraud, you’re just human (thank goodness)!

  173. Heather November 18, 2010 at 7:53 am #

    I think so many of us feel the exact same way you do. As a person who has the honor of taking family photos for people, my insane time is also right now. And there are days I feel like I am just playing “photographer.” But I try to remind myself that if I am doing my best to serve my clients needs and stay home with my family, I am very very lucky.

    Thanks for your transparency. It is quality traits like those that keep me reading your blog. (Among many, many other things…)

  174. Lindsey R. November 18, 2010 at 7:53 am #

    Totally God-timed post just for me. My devotional this morning was about being transparent and authentic to those around us. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 (NIV) “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.”

    Encouragement means so much more when you have seen that person during a low and saw how God faithfully brought them through. Thank you for this! May you be encouraged today as well, you’re doing a great ministry through your blog to all of us ladies out here!

  175. Jenn November 18, 2010 at 7:49 am #

    This post could not have come at a better time… you took the words right out of my mouth!!! You are so inspiring in everything you do, including your honesty!!! Good luck with your busy season!!!

  176. Megan November 18, 2010 at 7:43 am #

    I think we all can relate. Remember that we all love reading your blog because underneath it all, we identify with you as a wife, a mother, friend and sister in Christ. Thanks for keeping it real.

  177. jaclyn November 18, 2010 at 7:40 am #

    thank you for posting this!! i was starting to think you were perfect! :)

  178. patrice November 18, 2010 at 7:26 am #

    I admire that you admitted these feelings! I feel the same way so often…is it a cultural thing? a mom thing? I don’t know, but it’s so nice to hear someone else that appears to have it so together talk about feeling the same way…thank you :)

  179. emily November 18, 2010 at 7:08 am #

    it’s easy to be overwhelmed. you are doing a fantastic job. you are not a fraud! you are always honest here, that’s why we love you! take things one at a time and keep perspective. xo

  180. Katie @ Yoga Gal November 18, 2010 at 7:04 am #

    I really liked this. I admit, I do read your blog and wonder how you always look so pretty and put-together, and how you balance your family and your business. Your blog is always so fashionable and classy. It is kinda a relief to see that you have a hard time juggling too sometimes. But I do want to tell you that I think that you are doing great. No one is perfect 100% of the time. We just have to keep telling ourselves that! :D

  181. Angela November 18, 2010 at 7:02 am #

    Thanks for sharing with all of us. It’s easy to look at someone else (or their blog, family, home, business) and feel like we don’t measure up. We’re all in the same shoes! I feel the same way on a daily basis.

  182. Jen V. November 18, 2010 at 6:54 am #

    Thank you for sharing, Emily! Imperfection is sometimes just as inspiring as the pretty picture we often go looking for. I know I feel the same way you do, a good majority of the time. It’s nice to be in great company :)

  183. Emily, Timeless Paper November 18, 2010 at 6:45 am #

    Aww! We’re all doing the same dance. Hang in there. You are beautiful and I love that you’re sharing your “behind the curtain” feelings. You’re such an inspiration. Your real life moments are one reason that attracts me to your blog – it helps me relate to you. It helps me know there are other gals out there with a similar lifestyle. Thanks for being you!

  184. Julie M November 18, 2010 at 6:33 am #

    Ditto what Renae said and my .02. I always think it’s hard to maintain a balance of “real” with “i’m really put together and not a wreck” so that my friends know me but aren’t intimidated by me. Sometimes it just takes saying so once in a while to help us all remember we are alike.

  185. Libby Maddux November 18, 2010 at 6:31 am #

    Thank you for sharing your heart and your “real” self. I still think you are awesome! Have a great day!

  186. Blaire Bingham November 18, 2010 at 6:28 am #

    I have just discovered your blog and I love reading it! Reading your blog brings joy to this frazzled mom who feels a lot like you do everyday. Whenever I feel like I just can’t move on, I always think of the bible verse … 2 Corinthians 12:9, But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. I hope this gives you strength for today:)

  187. melissa*320 sycamore November 18, 2010 at 6:28 am #

    I think anyone with a blog feels this way…we tend to show the world our best, but cringe at the thought of exposing our day to day messes, physically and emotionally :) I think everyone appreciates posts like these to reaffirm that we are all normal, stumbling every day. Thank goodness God knows what we can be and is endlessly patient with us. Big hugs to you! Makes me love you even more…

  188. Renae November 18, 2010 at 6:16 am #

    Just when I think I should stop reading blogs because I just can’t handle the pressure that I let them create for me, you admit all of this. Thanks for helping me realize that really, I should keep some perspective. Hope your business is going well, remember that people hired you because they know you can create beautiful stuff. If I could afford it i’d hire you too!! :) God bless you and your family!

  189. I Live in an Antbed November 18, 2010 at 6:04 am #

    Your “imperfection” is gorgeous!! You don’t worry a bit about a few loose ends here and there. You are so very creative!

  190. Nicole P. November 18, 2010 at 5:57 am #

    Welcome to the club ;)

  191. Amy Lynne November 18, 2010 at 5:41 am #

    Hugs to you!!! I am in busy mode too. I think we all hold ourselves to a much higher standard than the people around us do. I told my husband I feel like I am lazy and not a hard worker because I don’t get enough accomplished. He just laughed and said that is a sign of being a hard worker, we never feel like we’ve done enough. You are doing great and you will be able to breathe again soon. This weekend and next weekend will be my busiest times of the year, so I will be thinking about another mama out there creating and working as I plow through my orders too! Good luck sweetie!

  192. j November 18, 2010 at 5:24 am #

    It’s so funny you write this today. I was going to write to you to thank you for the inspiration you have given me. Your blog and creativity are like none I’ve ever seen. You have helped awaken in me a love of making things. I actually made a wreath based on your flower tutorial (I posted it today) and last night I started working on a book page wreath. So thank you and keep up the beautiful work.

  193. Meg November 18, 2010 at 5:22 am #

    Balance. It’s hard to find that balance.

  194. amy@maisondecor November 18, 2010 at 5:19 am #

    Geez I think you described myself in your list above. Lets be our own best friends, this is good advice. I never think anyone is perfect, do you? We are all muddling along the best we can and enjoying the ride is the main reason, or why bother!!

  195. denise sabia November 18, 2010 at 5:17 am #

    you said it girlfriend! It’s amazing what you can do with a camera. My house doesn’t look nearly as “put together” as it does in a photo.
    Hang in there. Your doing great! Sometimes the whole “style” of a life can snowball into a monster (in our own heads).
    It’s nice to know that you probably stay in your pj’s a little longer, and don’t get around to brushing your teeth as soon as you’d like in the morning!
    It’s a fabulous club we “stay-at-home-mom’s” have!
    Enjoy the moment!
    -denise

  196. nicole November 18, 2010 at 5:16 am #

    these are my favorite posts, i love knowing everyone else out there is just as frazzled as me!

  197. Tara November 18, 2010 at 5:11 am #

    your honesty is beautiful.
    this might be my favorite post ever and there are no pictures or tutorials or give aways.

  198. Micah November 18, 2010 at 4:57 am #

    Imperfect AND honest??? (((HUG)))) I love you even more! lol I realize I don’t KNOW you but I love visiting your site. I’ve got your “twirl” link on my blog. I make flower pins from your tutorial and sell them to my friends. I made a white ruffle pillow and fell in love.
    Thanks for sharing all the fun stuff… . and thank you for keeping it real!

  199. tricia November 18, 2010 at 4:56 am #

    Love your transparency in this post.

  200. Mel November 18, 2010 at 2:44 am #

    Be kind, to yourself first.

    Thank you for sharing your work with all of us and for the courage to express that you are human.

  201. Chedva (Belly's Button) November 18, 2010 at 1:45 am #

    This is one of the sweetest, most sincere posts I’ve read in a while.

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