I Don’t Know How She Does It – Me!
I have loved looking at how my fellow working moms manage to balance it all in my “I Don’t Know How She Does It” series, so thought it might be fun to show you how I do it, too. Here goes:
What time does your day start and how?
My day typically starts around 630am. Kai (now 21 months old) is the first to wake in our house and usually starts chit chatting away in his crib around then. We take our time and usually go up to get him about 10 minutes later or so. Little D (five and a half) wakes around 715am. Our household is pretty peaceful in the morning, I have to say. No TV or radio on, we just eat a little, draw a bit, check emails, sip coffee and then get D out the door for school by 815am. Then support arrives for Kai (a nanny two days per week, my mom the other three) and my husband and I both settle in at our desks to get to work. Yes, we both work from home. Yes, we get along well.
What time does your day end and how?
These days I can rarely keep my eyes open past 930/10pm. It’s pretty sad because then I am usually awake around 4am stressing about the next day, but that’s life. The kids go down around 730pm and then we have a few hours of TV watching, reading, talking over a glass of wine, and call it a day. My husband stays awake later than me, that’s when he gets his “Breaking Bad” fix in.
Do you work from home or in an office? What is the set up like?
I work from home with a West Elm Parsons desk in glossy white, an iMac, and not much else. My space is wide open but on a separate floor from our main living area so I get to see my son when he goes in and out with his nanny en route to the park or library, but we’re divided enough that he isn’t in the vicinity most of the day. My husband works in a closed office on the same floor as me which works out nicely because we have the walls to separate us when we need it, but I have him to run upstairs and refill my coffee when I need it.
Do you see/speak to your kids throughout your work day? If yes, how/when?
I see my son periodically throughout the day, which I love. That was the main motivating factor when I left my big PR agency job in 2008, one year after having my daughter. I felt like I missed out on her first year of life, sneaking in 45 minutes with her in the morning and another 45 at night, so I took a leap and haven’t looked back. I definitely feel the difference with my son, being around every day to see him grow and evolve. Even though I am not directly caring for him during the day, I can see and hear him whenever I want and often sneak upstairs between conference calls for a check in. My daughter gets home from school around 330/4pm and I try to wrap up my work for the day by then so we have a few hours together without too many distractions. I am often on my iPhone too much during that time responding to emails and pressing issues, but at least I am with her and for the most part, stay focused. Being able to do that is a true gift and the accomplishment I am most proud of – I have built a career that lets me truly have it all.
What is the best thing about being a working mom? Hardest thing?
I think the best thing about being a working mom is the income. It’s expensive to raise a family in Southern California and the fact that we are dual income has afforded us many lovely things in life. I also love the satisfaction I get from working. I am good at my job, I work with smart, inspiring, creative people, and I love the confidence I have built from honing my craft. Hardest thing is how packed my days are. If something is not on my iCal, it doesn’t exist, and some days that’s just annoying. I see my fellow moms who can go days without checking email and I get a little jealous.
Be honest, what is one thing you envy about stay at home moms?
That their only boss is their family. I can’t imagine what it would be like to not have to worry about clients and deadlines…ever.
Answer the question “I don’t know how you do it?” in ten words or less.
It takes a village. And I have a good one.
And here are just a few of the things I am loving at the moment for me and she and he…
Clockwise from top left:
Love a good sweatshirt
The perfect commemorative tee for my little man
If daddy’s a sneakerhead, baby must be one, too…
Deep conditioning for my thick, wavy hair
A little sparkle to jazz up a tee and jeans
Monogrammed chic for the home
A new book to inspire more family dinners
A pop of color for my “jeans and a hoodie” obsessed little lady
*photo above by Sequins and Candy/Fawn Christiansen*