Hi there friends! Hope you are enjoying a relaxing Saturday! Today, I’m sharing my “interview” with another great reader/awesome working mom – Jennifer. Jennifer also lives in Virginia (I’ve learned through this process that I have a lot of Virginia readers – we need a meet-up, right?!?). Just last year she left her position as a Navy Lieutenant (so cool) and now she works from home as a consultant for a government contractor. She has two little ones – Grady (age 2.5) and Marion (9 months) – that have both been in daycare since they were about two months old. Let’s have a cup of coffee with Jennifer, shall we?!?
1. What is your typical day like?
My kids are early risers, so while I always wish I could work out, shower and make lunches before they wake up, I really can’t get up any earlier than 5:30. Between 6-7 I feed Marion and Grady usually begins to stir. I give him breakfast and change all diapers and clothes for the day. Around 7:30, I get myself dressed (usually in some kind of clothes that I can be presentable to drop them off–when I was in the Navy, I got up at 5:30 while my husband appeased Grady, I would quickly shower and let him “get into” my lower bathroom drawers–so dry hair, take something out of his mouth he shouldn’t have, put on boots and lock Grady in my closet with me so he can’t escape while I put on my uniform etc.-sometimes the pack n play would work too with a lot of balls. 🙂 Next, I make lunches–wishing the entire time I had made them the night before. At 8, I drop the kids off at school which usually takes me about 40 minutes because I can never just drop and go – always tend to linger and let them adjust a bit. I am at home working all day until I pick them up at 4 pm, start dinner, play with the kids while it’s baking, eat dinner, and start baths at 6:30. Then, Marion goes down first, so that gives me a little extra one on one time with Grady before it’s time for him to go to bed. (Already I see such a trend in the basic routines of a working mom. I love knowing that while I’m rushing around like a chicken with my head cut off every night, there are plenty of other moms doing the exact same thing!)
2. Why do you work?
I work because I like the lifestyle we are able to uphold with the extra income and though I am not with them 24/7, I feel like we are able to provide for them that much more with the extra money, while they make friends, socialize, and learn at the same time. My husband is in the Navy still and will deploy in the coming year so I do like the flexibility of my new job for when we fall on tougher times when he is gone. I like to work as much as possible when he is around to help out so that taking off is more of an option when I am acting as a single Mom. (Wow. I can’t even imagine. Kudos to you momma!)
3. What is the best thing about being a working mom? What is the worst or hardest thing?
The best thing about being a working mom is that I feel like sending my kids to school gives them A LOT of social skills that they wouldn’t have staying home with me, even with Mommy play dates. (I totally agree. I’m a big advocate for the socialization that comes from sending our kids to daycare/school.)
The worst thing is the busy schedule. (Amen.)
4. What items or tips do you recommend to “make it work”?
– Meal Prep on Sunday
– I get an extensive report from daycare about their days and that really helps making me feel connected to their day (I used to love this too when Sam was in a more traditional daycare setting. I like that most daycares today respect that you are still “in charge” and keep you in the loop about even the most mundane things – like how long they nap, how much they eat, and how often they poop.)
5. What encouragement, scripture, etc. has been important in your life and might be meaningful to another working mom?
I often feel the mommy guilt that I am not a Stay at home, so trying to avoid falling into the comparison trap and ALWAYS remember that everyone/ every family has to do what is right for THEM! (I couldn’t agree more… Having a community – even if it is just online – of other working moms also REALLY helps here.)
Hope you all enjoy your Saturdays!