I Don’t Know How She Does It – Tania Kingsrud
Tania is an IRL friend (in real life). Now I get the “I don’t know how you do it” thing all the time and honestly, my personal answer is just…you do (more on me later). It’s not as mission impossible as you might think. But then I look at Tania and I am the one left wondering…I really don’t know how this girl does it.
Tania is a PR powerhouse at one of the top agencies in Hollywood, a devoted mama to two (Ella Jane, 4 and Ava Grace, 2) who are so obviously such happy, creative, amazing little girls, a supportive wife to a busy career man who she finds time to go on kids-free dates with on the regular, a birthday party thrower extraordinaire, a style beacon who somehow always finds herself two steps ahead of the latest beauty and fashion trends…oh, and she hits the treadmill (religiously) at like 10 at night.
She is fun, smart, chic and the epitome of a woman who manages to do it all…here’s how:
What time does your day start and how?
About 645/7am when my alarm goes off (which is my iPhone – because other than the microwave, we don’t have clocks – digital or hand – in our house) and here’s the best part – my children will still be sleeping for at least another 45 mins to an hour – which is just the amount of time I need to get our house up and running for the day. First thing’s first, I let my dog out immediately. She’s been holding it all night and likely close to exploding as you can only imagine the size of a 4lb Pomeranian’s bladder. Then I proceed to hair and makeup until the girls stir from slumber. Sometimes I have sleepy heads so I’ll have to actually wake up Ella (my 4yr old) because she has to be to school by 830. It’s breakfast of choice. Usually yogurt, gorilla munch and almond milk, waffles or eggs. Me and hubster alternate on preparation of brekkie and a packed lunch, but I always pick the attire. That’s a woman’s job. When Ava wakes up we let her run around. She’s not quite ready for breakfast as soon as she’s up, unlike Ella who is famished and ready to nosh. Ava bids us adieu and spends the rest of the morning playing with our nanny until Ella comes home.
What time does your day end and how?
It ends at about 1130pm after a good deep flossing.
Do you work from home or in an office? What is the set up like?
In a bustling PR office surrounded by colleagues, whom I also call friends. It’s very standard. White walls, small offices and cubies that the girls have spruced up with bulletin boards.
Do you see/speak to your kids throughout your work day? If yes, how/when?
Yes, Ella calls me or vice versa and we go into some specific details of her day, usually topped off by some sort of special request when I get home (i.e. I want to play The Claw, or read “The Giving Tree” or have peppers with my dinner) then it’s a few basics with my 2 year old Ava like “How are you? I miss you! I love you. I want a gummy bear!” My nanny also occasionally checks in. I like to hear from them often especially if they are off to the park or down the street for a play date and they know the drill.
What is the best thing about being a working mom? Hardest thing?
Well there’s that supplementary salary that allows me and my family to enjoy some of the finer luxuries in life (i.e. frequent family travel, unlimited visits to Disneyland, a multitude of classes, a nice college fund in the works, mutual funds, a lovely home, weekly housekeeper visits, pedicures as needed, etc.). And my job is very social, so it completes that part of my life. You know, that thing that a lot of people in my age group still need: friends, sneaking a glass of white at lunch, good conversation with people over the age of 6. The hardest thing? Well let’s be honest, I miss my kiddos and when I take days off and relish in all that time with them I think, man! This is what it would be like if I were with them every day! Museums, parks, romp rooms and pony rides! But realistically we probably do all of those fun things because I’m NOT home every day with them. We value our time together. Coming home from work every day and seeing their pure excitement and joy? They missed me and darn does it ever feel good.
Be honest, what is one thing you envy about stay at home moms?
I don’t. I’m content with my life and think envy can be ugly so I keep it at bay. The grass is always greener. ALWAYS. That’s human nature. So when I start to go down that path of wishing for something that I don’t have, I do what I can to reel it in, because I’m lucky. I have a good job that I’m good at. And my kids are happy, my husband is happy, my dog is happy and hell, my nanny is happy! She loves my kids and gets to spend quality time with them and they love her equally back. You can never have too much love so I’m fine that my kids are showered in it from all ends.
Answer the question “I don’t know how you do it?” in ten words or less
I don’t know how I do it but that’s why it’s gratifying. (I went over my limit).
Here are some of the things she is currently coveting for summer 2012 for she and she and she:
Clockwise from top left:
Fitted denim sleeveless jacket is a current must-have. Over a maxi dress, or with a white tee and leggings, you really can’t lose. But it is all the trend right now so the options are kind of pricey. I found mine at a vintage store and it’s studded which makes it hella cool, but you can really make your own. Try Gap Kids, and get a larger size. Then cut off the sleeves and wash it to give it that used look. Voila! You can also stud it yourself if you are feeling crafty.
Sonia Kashuk Eye Makeup Remover – I’m HUGE on this and have been using it for years. First off, it’s cheap compared to cosmetic brands like Lancome, Chanel and MAC. Secondly, it works better than ALL of them. I use MAC eyeliners and eye makeup, because quite simply it’s the best, but it’s made to stay put on your face through thick and thin. One dip of my cotton pad in this magic and then one swipe across the eye and POOF it’s all gone. It’s gentle, too. I love to wear eye makeup but I hate finding it on my pillows and creamy bedsheets. Thanks to Sonia, this is never an issue.
For fashion, I love Tea Collection! They have adorable, graphic printed dresses and tops. It’s super cute and fashion forward, but still very girly and really just made for toddlers. I’m not super keen on dressing my kids in the latest fashion trends that we find for ourselves in People Stylewatch. They can get into that when they are teens and tweens. For now, mommy picks and mommy likes super sweet girly clothes.
Honest Family Essentials and Products – Full disclosure, they are my client, but actually one that I believe in and love. All of their products are completely effective and non-toxic which is key when you have a house full of little ones. When I started working with them it was shocking to learn how many mainstay brands that I used that contained really harmful chemicals. We are talking about the stuff that they put in Liquid Drano and to kill roaches but in your dishsoap. My favorite is the multi-purpose cleaner because it literally can be used on ANYTHING – glass, tables, floors and it works to boot!
For fun, I love the products at Insectlore! You can buy these little butterfly gardens and ladybug jars – basically super easy, no frill hatching kits. Me and my kids both thoroughly enjoyed watching our little buggers grow. The metamorphosis was fascinating and educational. Then seeing their faces while we released our little ladies and butters into the wild? It was priceless. It also really teaches them about the planet, and preservation and being good to all of the Earth’s creatures. We are animal nerds at Casa Kingsrud and big on that kind of stuff.
For anti-bacterial – which we all carry like a weapon, am I right? I like the Cleanwell products. It is an alcohol free brand and smells nice.
Aquaphor – I swear by it! I know, I know, it’s got like carcinogens or whatever and not something uber fancy like La Mer, but it’s moisturizing, protective and healing – razor cuts, dry elbows, chapped lips and diaper rash – it pretty much handles it all.