Published:Sunday | May 8, 2016 | The Gleaner Jamaica
Jennifer Azan, proprietor of Flirt Boutique, has called Jamaica home since she married Emile Azan more than 13 years ago. This Colombian beauty quickly captures attention with her stunning good looks, raven black hair and warmth. But after getting to know this savvy businesswoman, it becomes clear that there is much more to her than her looks. Her priority is her family - her husband and their two children, Sebastian and Samantha.
Flirt Boutique is known for contemporary fashionable wear, chic interior decor and personalised customer service. Fashion A-listers depend on Flirt as their go-to boutique for everything a modern wardrobe requires. Today, we get a rare look into the life of the brains behind the operation as we delve into what motherhood means to her.
1. How would you describe yourself in five words?
Grateful, pleasant, organised, understanding, passionate.
2. What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about my family and business, Flirt Boutique. I am grateful for my husband Emile, and for the 13 years we have been together. Like all married couples, we know that marriage is not a walk in the park, but our commitment to God, each other and our children makes our marriage fulfilling and happy. I love watching my husband during his one-on-one time with the kids, as those moments help to develop their special bond with him.
3. What has being a mother taught you about yourself?
Definitely that the best things in life are free. When my kids hug or ask me to snuggle with them, it means more to me than anything else in the world.
Motherhood is not about me anymore, but of course, I need to take care of myself. I've learnt that I can't teach my children what I am not, so every day I try to be better so that I can be the best role model for them. Today is not for forever, and there are so many stages in this bumpy road called motherhood. They all have their challenges and blessings.
If I'm ever in the middle of a particularly tough one, I try to remember that it's just a stage, and it won't last forever. Being the mother of my two children has taught me to stop and enjoy every moment because today is not forever.
4. How has motherhood changed you?
Motherhood has changed me in a positive way, in that I try to be better every day. I hug and kiss my children every day because I never want them to doubt my love for them. I also discipline them when necessary because they need to know that every action has a consequence. I appreciate when friends or family come to me and honestly tell me if they have seen my children say or do anything wrong.
5. What is the best advice your mother has ever given you?
My mother is a woman of strength, who was and still is very strict. She taught me about discipline and that I have to be responsible for my own actions and words. She also taught me independence and not to depend on anyone; and I love her for these lessons.
6. What advice would you give to other mothers?
Time really flies and the best practical advice is to take a lot of pictures and videos. I am happy I did, and still do, because we enjoy watching past memories and these videos give us great joy.
7. What is your most treasured memory?
When I was a child growing up in Colombia, I remember my grandparents taking us to the beach every Sunday morning, from as early as 6:00 to return home by 10:00. Thinking back, my grandparents preferred us having the beach to ourselves and it was a very special routine for us.
8. What would constitute a 'perfect' day for you?
A perfect day for me would be any given Sunday waking up at the leisurely hour of 7 a.m., having breakfast together then going to church with the children. We enjoy dining out Sunday evenings, then going back home to relax as a family.
9. How do you juggle being a working mother involved in your children's school?
Sometimes it's hard, but I have help from a very special lady - Mrs Patrick. Thanks to her, I am never in a rush. I can decide based on work, which afternoons I can take the kids to after-school activities without feeling the pressure to leave work because she makes sure they are on time for all their activities. The children love her and her love for them gives me assurance that they are fine when I cannot be there. I also have a very reliable staff at the boutique and I really appreciate them.
10. Favourite TV show/book/song?
My favourite TV show is Scandal, but Netflix has spoilt me so much that I wait until the season is over so I can watch every episode back to back.
Favourite book: The Great Reformer. I love reading about Pope Francis' life, and how, through his life and faith, he has helped (others) to regain belief in the Catholic Church.
Favourite song: I love music and the worst thing is that I have never been able to memorise a song. I love all genres of music and enjoy them based on my mood. I play around with my kids. When I sing songs I change the words and they keep correcting me.
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