Gentlemen In Zurich

Oh, I got the pictures from our trip to Zurich today. I left Switzerland with a huge smile on my face. Partly because it was nice to get some alone time, he he, but also because everything turned out so well. If you’re living in Zurich or passing through, I can really recommend to stop by Scandinavia Hair if you want to get your hair done. It was so much fun to listen to Anna, the founder of the salon. She moved to the US to study, met Serafin from Switzerland, and decided to go back with him after finishing her education. They started the salon together last year and so far they’ve been doing great. Entrepreneur stories including love is just amazing.

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Serafin is in the middle, and Anna is wearing a brown shirt.

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The salon sold our mascara (!) that’s out of stock everywhere. I’ve noticed that the mascara “18 Hours” is being auctioned at Tradera. It’s an amazing mascara. I’ll tell you more about it once it’s re-launched in May. We manufacture all of our products here in Sweden, except for the mascara that’s being made in Italy. Italy’s a great country but sometimes the manufacturing process is a bit slow… 🙂

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Anna and I are talking about the collaboration between the salon and LCC.

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It went pretty well to speak English. I had some issues when I was talking about how much I sweat and how that’s the reason I developed our deodorant. I really wanted to emphasize the fact that I sweat more than “normal”, but I said: “I sweat EVERYWHERE”. The audience must’ve associated that with more private, embarrassing areas… He he.

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Me and the super couple! Serafin from Switzerland thinks that Swedish women are so intense (in a good way), and that we have an “I can do it myself” mentality. He offered to pull my suitcase but I said I can do it myself. When I studied in Zurich I was in a class with males only, and I got so sick of all the guys always trying to help me with elementary tasks. If I go on a date I think it’s sweet when the guy holds the door open for me or help me carry something, but in my everyday life I can open the door myself.
 

 

Bootcut

I’m almost out of breath running around and feeling stressed. There’s really no need for me to feel this way, but once you get going it’s difficult to start over. I had a meeting this morning with Pingis and a Finnish company regarding us launching in Finland. That would be a dream come true. Today all of you living in Finland can order our products at nordicfeel.fi, but we want to be available in stores as well.
 

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I didn’t have time to wash my hair yesterday, or to be honest I didn’t have the energy. I applied some dry shampoo and put my hair in a bun. I’m wearing a blouse from Lindex and jeans from 77thFLEA. By the way, I’ve got an appointment at the hairdresser next week. I should keep my hair short and not save it, right?
 

 

Nice Brows

I picked up some eyebrow color from Depend on my way home from work. I feel a little nostalgic because it reminds me of when my mom used to color her eyebrows at home, as did I in my early teenage years. I’ve had the luxury of getting my eyebrows fixed at the salon regularly, but it’s so time consuming I figured I’m gonna try doing it at home tonight.

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Although I didn’t realize I bought black (!) coloring until I got home. I think I got confused thinking of eyelash coloring. I hesitated but the decided to go for it anyways… Who can say no when the kids are asleep and the color pack is just laying there on the sink in front of you?

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I think it turned out well! I’m wearing the paste in this pic and the result looks pretty much the same. I like having dark eyebrows. Anyways, now I can continue to do my brows at home, which will be way easier and mostly cheaper. Now it’s time for some work, hugs to you guys.

 

NY Next Week!

I almost forgot to update my ESTA for my US trip next week. I’m really bad at keeping track of all my personal appointments, like the gynecologist, dentist, child care center, etc. I turn into an ostrich sticking my head in the sand, which is probably the exact opposite of what’s best for you. My dentist has been trying to get a hold me for ages and I never pick up the phone. That’s rude of me, I know, but I don’t think the public dental office will take it personally. I feel anxious. The only way to get it done is for me to prioritize and make a to-do list. Then I just have to force myself to make the call right away in the morning. But then you get stuck in a holding line and I loose my patience, resulting in weeks passing by again. For example: I added the surname Spångberg when we got married, but I still haven’t bothered to change the name on some of my cards.

Isn’t it weird how you can be so effective at work and extremely lazy when it regards your private life? Perhaps it’s because I don’t find it interesting? I never leave any work assignments dragging, I take care of business right away. Although, I do think every part of my job is fun. Anyways, what I was gonna say was, that I updated my ESTA and is now approved to enter the US. Wiho. Me, Sheila, and Fanny are going there for a girls weekend next week.

We actually ended up renting an apartment. It was the same price as the hotel we looked at, and way bigger in size. Now we’re gonna stay in a 140 sqm penthouse…

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We’ll have a private elevator, three large bedrooms, and a terrace. Omg, we’re gonna love it. The place is located in Midtown. I’m not that familiar with New York, but by the sound of the name and street number it seems to be in the middle of Manhattan. That should be a good spot when we wanna get around. It’s going to be so much fun to get away with the girls. It feels unreal that me, as a mother of two kids, is going away to drink champagne with my friends across the Atlantic. 🙂

 

Winding Path

My career path has been everything but straight. It’s easy to think that you wake up one day as an entrepreneur starting a successful business and making an immediate profit. During my ten years I’ve started eleven companies. That means a lot of investments not paying out. However, I don’t see this as a failure, quite the opposite. I see it as nine times when I’ve been scared, prestigeless, and realized it’s not worth pursuing and moved on. There’s been many times during these years when I could’ve abandoned my entrepreneurship, but it’s not my thing to give up just because it doesn’t turn out the way I wanted to. Instead I’ve focused on all the experience I’ve gained during these years.

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Soon to be 26 years old and having 10 years experience of being a self-employee is amazing. It would’ve been more realistic to be at this position at the age of 36. My point being: If it took me 10 years to get it right, become profitable, and really be successful (this year the companies will revenue 30 million kr), don’t count on your first idea to be the one. That will just take time and energy. The key is to know when to give up short term with an idea that won’t take you anywhere long term. Eventually it will be worth it.

 

Car Time

Odd and I carpooled to work this morning. It’s so cozy, kinda like “our time”. When you’re husband and wife you have to take every opportunity to be with just each other. At home we’re “mommy, mommy, mommy”, and the same for daddy. Even if I look over to Gillis he continues to call out “mommy, mommy, mommy”. Perhaps this is common for kids his age? I’ve started to reply with “Gillis, Gillis, Gillis”, that always make him laugh. Anyways, now it’s time for a morning meeting. I’ve got a day at the office to look forward to, except for a lunch out…so nice!

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Dinner Out!

I’m going out for dinner tonight, or business and pleasure as you say. Ida and Lina are coming to Stockholm to talk about an event we have coming up in a few months. Ida lives in Umeå so I don’t get to see her that often so we took this opportunity and scheduled our meeting over dinner. It’s gonna be so fun to catch up. I’m also really happy that me and the kids got a good night sleep. There wasn’t much time for me to get ready for the dinner, so I changed to a lace top, and my only pair of black heels.. Why buy more shoes when I love my pair from Michael Kors? They’re so comfortable.

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I was matching the kitchen today…
 

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… So was Gillis!

 

 

First Aid

We’re starting to get quite a collection of toys here at home: One selection of larger toys for Sally, and one selection of smaller toys for Gillis. The smaller toys have tiny removable pieces, dangerous. Gillis is like a tornado when he plays. The more toys he manage to drag out, the better. His biggest fan Sally crawls behind him picking up the tiny pieces… Gillis was never interested in putting small objects in his mouth when he was younger, but Sally is the exact opposite. To prevent her from swallowing anything I try to pick up all the pieces before she gets her hands on them. I keep the dangerous stuff away from her (like Kinder Eggs). I do the same thing when it comes to food. Sally loves to throw food under the dinner table. I do my best, but it happens a blueberry gets away from me now and then. If one of them were to choke on something, I feel like I know what to do. However, I have no idea how I would react. I can only hope I would keep calm. I’ve learned that kids under 1 year that are choking should be positioned like this:

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Put the child on its belly on your arm or lap. Your hand on the child’s chin is there to support the head. Make sure the head is lower than the body. Firmly tap 5 times with your hand in between the shoulderblades. If the child still doesn’t spit up the food/piece, turn it to its back and do chest compressions. The most important thing is to remove whatever got stuck. Coughing is usually one way to get rid of it. Whatever you do: Don’t try and dig it out with your fingers. That’s a common reflex, but you might end up pushing whatever is stuck there further down the throat.

This post is a collaboration with Trygg-Hansa (Swedish insurance company), who works actively with accident prevention. I’m taking their advice and just booked a CPR course for me and my colleagues. Although, I don’t think you really understand the meaning of knowing CPR until you encounter an emergency situation. Lack of knowledge should not be a reason to stand by and watch it happen. If you want to take a course I’m offering a 100 kr discount on all Trygg-Hansa’s “Life in Mind” first aid courses (also availble online). Use the code: trygghansa1604 and book your course before April 31st!

In collaboration with Trygg-Hansa

 

Löwengrip Invest AB

It’s a big day today. Hopefully, we’re about to find the right person to hire. This means the company will grow with one more employee. It’s a powerful feeling to hire people. During a time period of 10 years I’ve had at least 60 employees. Right now there’s about 20 people in total working for all my companies. You already know everything about LCC and Flattered, but I haven’t told you that much about Löwengrip Invest. That’s the only one of my companies that I own 100% of. Löwengrip Invest takes care of the blog, all my social media outlets, books, lectures (that I had before): Basically everything regarding my branding. In addition to this, the company is supposed to make investments. So far we’ve invested in Flattered, LCC, and Natural Cycles. We’re currently having discussions and looking into making new investments in other companies which is super exciting.

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Coat from Zara, T-shirt from COS, bag from Mulberry, jeans from Denham, and Flattered’s new color eucalyptus on my feet.

To make Löwengrip Invest run smooth with my brand/blog, I have a small group of people helping me. Emelie is Brand Manager and my right hand. She takes care of all the partner collaborations, and she’s definitely the most operational of us all. She’s also has an ongoing dialogue with United Influencers who sells advertisement and sponsored blog posts. This used to be Mirza’s job before he decided to move on after working 6 years for Löwengrip Invest. The person we’re looking to hire now is going to be Mirza’s replacement. I need help to manage all the comments on the blog, Instagram, and Faceboook. I can take care of the blogging and Snapchat myself, but I need some help with my other social media outlets. Then we have Rosanna and Åsa who translates the English version of the blog: isabellalowengrip.com. It’s necessary to have two people translating, otherwise they’d be working 24/7.

That’s basically all of us at Löwengrip Invest. The company’s main focus is to take care of my brand, but the future goal is to become more of an investor as well. What’s new is that we’re working together with a PR and communication firm who takes care of all press and media. Every year there’s equally as many magazine articles about me as there is about the royal family… That’s crazy. Everything has simply grown so much that it’s too much for me to handle on my own. Starting in April, all interviews and media will go through this firm.

… Phew. 🙂

 

Today’s Candidates

I’m about to tell you something that almost never happens: We overslept this morning! Yes, it’s true. I woke up at 07:40 am to a quiet house. The only sign of life was the snoring kids. Usually they wake up at 06:00 am, but I think we all slept so much because the cold is finally going away so we don’t wake up all the time coughing. It feels great to be well rested, but stressful. After being up 20 minutes our nanny arrived and I went to work. Odd took Gillis to pre-school.

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Here’s a photo from Apoteksgruppen in Kalmar. I love when the stores take their time to make the product placement look nice!

Now it’s time for a fun day at the office. First out is a product meeting with LCC. After that I’m off to Adecco to meet the final candidates for the job as social media manager for Löwengrip Invest. Adecco has received hundreds of applications, and now it’s down to four people. I’ve read their resumes, checked out their work samples, and seen their presentation videos, so I’m looking forward to finally meet them. This is gonna be so exciting.