Back in May, I wrote a post about how I THOUGHT I was going to balance business and baby Timmerman #2. If you missed it, check it out here. I thought this was the perfect time to write "part 2" of this post. It's also good timing with Maygen's post earlier this week about women going back to work with babies at home. If you missed it, check it out here.
Jack joined our family 6 months ago, and it has been an awesome ride. We are so lucky and thankful to have this little man in our lives. It HAS been, however, a bit of a balancing act. Check out what I’ve had to adapt from my original plan and what has really worked for us, and what I didn’t see coming!
It Truly Does Take a Village. I planned on hiring childcare for both kids while I worked and I would say YES YES YES this has been my saving grace. I plan all of my internal team meetings while I have just Jack in the mornings and when Nora is at Preschool. If anyone knows Nora, it’s hard to get a word in when she’s around, whereas Jack is a quiet little guy, just as long as he’s part of the action, so it has worked well to “double up” my time with Jack for these internal meetings with my team. I schedule all of my meetings with clients when I have my amazing Jess who comes in to be with both kids while I work outside of the home or hide out downstairs in my home office. I have really made a point to work when I've schedule the time to work, and to not work when I haven't. I have carved out the proper time to do both jobs and it's working out well.
Use Technology! I have weekly one on one check in meetings with my team and instead of packing up Jack to do these, we have started using Facetime. It’s usually a quick 30 min meeting, so this has worked really well for us. Another thing that has worked well is Slack. I often don’t get to my emails until the afternoon, but if my team needs me in the morning, they know they can always reach me by a quick message on Slack. Also, because I’m primarily working from home for the time being, it’s good to see how my team is doing on their workload for the week and so we’ve continued to use Trello to manage our tasks for all our events.
Giving up the things you love. With decreasing my hours, I’ve definitely had to give up on some things in my business that I just can’t afford to spend time on anymore which has been REALLY hard because I just love every part of my job so much. Don’t roll your eyes, haha, I really do. Having a great team who I know does their job just as well as me, or even better, has been amazing and I am SO lucky they are here!
Another thing I love doing is grocery shopping! But, it is a huge time suck and is a bit of a production with 2 kids in the winter. We’ve been using the Superstore Click and Collect for a few months now and just LOVE it. People who use this service either love it or hating it but we love it. The reason I love it so much is that every Friday night (that’s right, Friday night), I sit down with my glass of wine and shop online for my groceries. I put all of the items in the cart and choose a time to go and pick them up. It’s AWESOME you guys. Then after Nora’s piano lessons on Saturday, we grab a coffee and snack from Starbucks (drive through of course with the kids in the car), pull up to the designated stall at Superstore, call them, turn on some tunes and wait for them to bring everything out to us in the car. Do they screw up sometimes? Oh for sure. Is some of the produce not the most fresh some of the time? Definitely. But it has saved us so much time that I am very much willing to overlook these flaws. It has saved us money too as you can see the cheapest products and see how much you have spent as you go in your cart!
The Roadblocks. Jack doesn’t take a bottle! He used to when he was a few weeks old, but just stopped one day and hasn’t looked back since. It is challenging as I can’t be away from him for more than a few hours at a time because I'm still nursing him. It was worse when he was really little because nursing was so comforting to him, but now he’s starting on solids and so that definitely helps keep him satisfied for longer. It was really hard when we had a big event and he was only 2 months old and I had to be gone for 16+ hours. My husband was able to bring him to me which was great for him AND me because I was SO full!
The Sibling Bond. For some reason, I hadn’t really thought about how Nora was going to be with Jack. I mean I knew that some siblings got jealous, etc., but this has been the best surprise. Nora is SO loving to her brother. She knows how to make him smile- like a whole new kind of happy that only she can bring out of him. He thinks she is the coolest and just follows her all day long. Okay that didn’t have to do with business, but was something I hadn’t expected.
I want to hear from you! Whether you’re working with babies, on mat leave, or staying at home with your kids full time, tell me how you’re managing!