Happy MOMday, friends! So excited to share the first Motivation MOMday profile with you guys. This week get to know my awesome friend Josie who is teaching her little girl how to be a lady boss and change the world from day one 🙂 She shares some really great advice. Enjoy!
- Mom 411– I am a 37-year old social worker and activist who married someone that I love and respect, Jeremy Deese. We decided we should have a child together about 7 months after meeting and it was the best decision of our respective lives. Morgyn just turned 3 and is very smart, insightful, and a bit sly at times (aren’t they all at this age though).
- Mommy Mantra– We must make the most of every single day because we might not get another chance to go around the sun. Keeping this in mind creates perspective when it comes to parenting my daughter and creating experiences for my family. I take Morgyn everywhere with me- to volunteer outings, traveling, to community events. I feel that she and I should experience a wide range of activities together and if you plan correctly, you can do anything.
- Me Time– When I get a few, very rare free moments to myself, I love to read (right now I am hooked on the Dresden Files books- can’t go wrong with a sexy wizard!) or watch any and all of the Real Housewives, with a glass of wine of course.
- Mom Peeve– My biggest pet peeve is when my child doesn’t listen, but I think that is pretty par for the mom course. My other pet peeve is when anyone (ahem, grandparents, ahem) gives Morgyn too much sugar. Sugar to a child is like water to a mogwai – they do not mix well!
- Mom Hack– I carry an extra set of her clothes in my car with me at all times. You never know when you might want to stop by the Railroad Square Park and play in the water tubes. Another must is Boogie Wipes, which are not just for noses.
- Mom-preneur– I have my master’s degree in social work and actually got pregnant in grad school (while working 3 jobs no less). So I am proof that if you put your mind to it, you can do it! I believe it is my purpose to help others have a better life, so I am very involved in volunteer and civic activities. My full time gig though is as the Director of Senior Volunteer Programs at Elder Care Services. I stay quite busy with that role as we have a 15 county footprint; I might be in Jefferson County one day and Bay County the next. While there is a bit of travel, if Morgyn needs me I can remote into my work computer and work from home. I am so lucky because I love what I do and have a pretty flexible schedule. My advice to keep a good balance between home, work, and extracurricular is to try to be truly present when you are with your family and that it is okay to say no to things.
- Mom Squad– I am so lucky because my best friend had her child four years before mine. I get to ask her about all sorts of icky and worrisome situations. I am also lucky to have a bunch of strong women in my circles that inspire and push me to make my community better for my daughter. Lastly, I admire you, Ivette, because you are a hard working mom who is smart, determined, and an expert traveler!
- Mom Goals– I want to make the best world that I can for my daughter (it’s that social worker drive in me). I want to promote inclusion and cultural competence in her as we have so much to learn from each other. I relish the fact that the preschool she attends has a tremendously diverse group of students (many are even international). I want her to know that even if we do not look alike, we all have something kindred in our spirits.
- Mom-cation– Dream vacation hands down has to be Ireland. I can see all of us enjoying the beautiful countryside and ancient wonders. I will have to see if they let kids into the Guinness factory though… 🙂
- My Children’s Take– “I like to go on adventures with you.”
We all know #MotivationMonday and #MCM (Man Crush Monday) are a thing, but I’m launching a new Monday series all about mamas – Motivation MOMday. And I hope it takes off 🙂
This series is all about sharing stories, advice and insights from moms I know and love with the goal of creating a digital network of amazing and supportive moms! Each week, I will feature a different mom who will share with us her take on 10 items. To kick things off, I’ve completed my MOMday profile below.
- Mom 411 – (Tell us a little about you and your family) I have a sweet, fun, funny, energetic goofball of a 2-year old named Westley. He absolutely turned our life upside down in the best of ways. My husband, Sam, and I have been married for 5 1/2 years and we also have a fur baby, Lucille Ball, a Boston Terrier who will be seven this year. Family is my top priority and my favorite way to spend time.
- Mommy Mantra – (Words you live by) Parenting is an art, not a science. Do what works for your family and don’t worry about what others think. Only you know what is best for your family and your child.
- Me Time – (Favorite escape, activity) Now that I’m in my 30s, taking care of my skin has become a top priority. Topping my list of favorite escapes is a spa day including a relaxing massage and a face altering facial 🙂 While a spa day isn’t in the works every month, I do indulge and have budgeted for manicures every two weeks. Something about having my nails done makes me feel like I can conquer the world 😉
- Mom Peeve – (Biggest pet peeve as a mom) Moms who judge other moms or make you feel guilty for your choices. We’re all doing our best, so let’s support each other, not put each other down. Rant over.
- Mom Hack – (Necessity is the mother of invention) Y’all don’t judge…but when I need to get things done around the house, my ultimate hack is courtesy of a little red monster named Elmo and a fabulous show called Sesame Street. Westley loves to watch and he also learns a ton (all the parts of his face for starters), while I can get laundry and chores done around the house. Their message about kindness makes me feel better about this choice.
- Mom-preneur – (Work, work from home, work it out, advice on work life balance) As much as I love being a mom, I equally love my career. I firmly believe working makes me a better mom and allows me to use my talents outside of raising our little guy. I work in public relations and absolutely love being creative everyday and working with clients from pens, tires and gyms to hotels, websites and restaurants. While balancing work and life isn’t always perfect, I try my best to give 110% at work and not think about home and then put work away at home and give 110% to my family. Being present is something I strive for every day. It’s a work in progress.
- Mom Squad – (Who do you look up to, who’s in your tribe, thoughts on mommy hood and friendships) I’m beyond lucky because I have such an amazing squad of moms! From my work moms who know the struggle of our industry to my daycare mom squad and our sweet kiddos who have been together since they were 3 months old to my “friends who are family” mom squad of Tias, Tatas and Ninas (my kid has a lot of aunts – not by blood, but by choice), there is no shortage of moms, advice and “mom juice” aka wine in my life. I adore each of my mom squad members and am always looking to grow the squad with new moms 🙂
- Mom Goals – (Aspirational, inspirational) With the Oscars last night, I’m reminded of Matthew McConaughey’s acceptance speech in 2014. He talks about wanting something to chase and that chase being his hero. He chases himself and looks forward to the man he will become with each decade that passes. This struck a chord with me because I love the idea of chasing yourself, a better self and growing and being your own biggest competition and aspiration. When I think of a mom goal, I want it to be about me chasing myself and hopefully becoming a better mom every day, every week, every year and eventually being around to see, love and spoil my grandchildren.
- Mom-cation – (Dream vacation) For me, a fabulous family vacation is what I love. I’m a total Type A maniac, so I LOVE planning trips way in advance and savoring the wait. Case in point, our summer family vacation in July to Maine has been planned since November. I can’t wait to take Westley on his first flight (Delta woot!) and spend a week on the beach in Maine eating way too much lobster and wearing way too many nautical stripes 🙂 Other dream vacations include a Disney Cruise (in 2018) and going on a South African safari once W is old enough to appreciate it.
- My Children’s Take – (Ask your child or children how they would describe you, their favorite thing about you) Like any proper 2-year old, when I asked W how he would describe me, he didn’t quite give me three words…instead he looked at me and grabbed my face and said “mama” with a big ole smile. I’ll take it!
If you’re interested in being a part of this series, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A lot! This is coming from a girl whose name is not exactly simple. My Cuban parents wanted a fun, French name, but didn’t like the original “Y” spelling of it, so they went with Ivette. When I was little, I would dream of having a more common name and for a while I made my mom call me Kim because I loved the character from “Different Strokes.”
There have been a lot of articles lately about names — CNN asked “Does your name shape your destiny?” (http://bit.ly/ddBPRw) I’m not sure, but I know that loving yourself and loving your name play a big role in your life and your level of confidence. As I got older, I learned to appreciate having a different name and have embraced it everyday since. I can’t imagine having any other name.
My other big thing is making an effort to remember people’s names and get the pronunciation right. This is a huge pet peeve of mine because so many people get my first and last name wrong ALL the time. I’ve learned to laugh it off because some of the pronunciations people come up with are hysterical. But I try my hardest not to be that person who massacres everyone’s name, even if they’ve met the person a million times.
So I’ve made it a priority when I meet someone to learn their name and then use it as many times as possible while I’m around them to ensure it’s ingrained in my mind. I especially make it a point to learn the names of servers at restaurants. I’ve never waited tables, but I can imagine how annoying it would be to have someone yell “hey you!” or “lady…” instead of asking for me by name. I find that learning a server’s name and actually using it equals better service and more enjoyable dining experience.
What are your name issues? Do you like your name? Do you think a name can affect certain aspects of your life? Let me know your thoughts.