Gin & Zin

Interview with Kayla- Getting it done!

Meet Kayla~

I am a tired, overworked wife and mom of two crazy, amazing, rambunctious and energetic kiddos. Landen is 6 and Elyse is 3 – and total opposites in every way.  My days are generally jammed packed and full of chaos.  

After shuttling the kiddos safely to school, I race to the office where I am an attorney spending most of my day staring at a computer screen, and fighting over stucco cracks or concrete cracks, or maybe its damaged tomatoes or rice, etc.  Most days I literally run out of the office to pick up my kids from school to avoid being charged $20 per minute after 6:00 pm!! (yes – you read that correctly – $20/min!) Once we finally get home, it’s dinner, homework and bed (and maybe sometimes we squeeze in a bath!)

My biggest strength as a mom is working hard to give my family the best life possible, but still carving out time to coach my son’s soccer team and being present in their lives.

Now that my kids are getting a little older, I am prioritizing my friendships and carving out time for adult activities – whether it be coffee dates with the girls, or game night with our closest family friends.  I realized in order to regain my sanity and alleviate stress, I need adult bonding time!

The Interview

Topic- How does s&%# get done in your home?

I mentioned in our working together that I work part time, yet feel like a full time housekeeper! Working full time means mama is gone many hours per week. How does your house get ahead? (Prep days, laundry every day, etc…)

Teamwork! I know it sounds cliché, but there is no way I would be able to keep up with it all by myself.  My husband is a big help and a semi-neat freak, which I take for granted most days.  But admittedly, keeping up with the house often falls to the bottom of the list! I hate hate hate spending my weekends cleaning house, doing laundry, grocery shopping, etc., and there is just no time during the week to get ahead! And with two kiddos and two dogs, it takes less than 3 minutes for the house to become thrashed!  Dishes and laundry seem to be never ending – just ask my husband!

But thankfully, we are lucky enough to hire a cleaning service to come at least once a month.  I would be lost without it! Ideally, I would love to say that I have my act together, and that by the beginning of every week, I have meals planned, laundry folded and put away, and the house completed picked up.  But that is not my reality.  Most weeks, I’m lucky if the laundry is done, maybe folded, but rarely put away.  It stacks up on my dresser where I sift through it during the week to get my kids dressed every morning! Now that my son is older, he is learning to help – putting away his own clothes, making his bed, collecting trash, etc.

What are your husbands strengths in the home? What are his roles in maintenance, meals, cleaning?

My husband is a HUGE help.  Of course, if you ask him, he will tell you that he does all the cooking and cleaning! Lol…typical. But he is not afraid to help clean the kitchen, sweep and vacuum, and do laundry (he will wash, dry and sometimes fold, but definitely won’t put away!)  He also cooks 95% of our meals. His work schedule allows him to come home earlier in the day, so he is great about cooking dinner.  Otherwise, we wouldn’t eat until 8:00 pm every night!

What gives you peace at the end of the day? What is a quick escape, a therapeutic moment, time, or ritual mom gets?

Wine! After the kiddos are off to bed, I generally curl up on the couch with a glass of wine, all snuggled up with my daughter’s Elsa blanket (seriously softest blanket ever!) and watch mindless television – I recently finished watching Parenthood – holy tearjerker!!  After using my brain all day, I need to just unwind and not think for a few hours.

I always feel like, in parenting, that the more we can be ahead of ourselves the better. Can you describe some of your practices in life where you get ahead of yourself (in a good way, like having chopped up veggies, school lunches made, etc).

Every so often I actually meal plan! My what a difference that makes! Also, organization is key. Something as simple as organizing my son’s closet so that his uniform clothes are accessible thereby eliminating the morning hunt for matching pieces every morning is a definite time saver.  He then can pick out his clothes and get ready himself.  We also recently installed a command center, equipped with a board containing giant binder clips to hold his weekly homework and important notices, and a hook below for his backpack.  Lifesaver!!! Everyone with kids should have such a space!!

Tell me about the car. Mine looks like it is the bottom of a pantry mixed with a dirty dishwasher and could double as a closet for all 4 members of my family.

Oh the car…you never know what you will find hidden in there! We spend so much time commuting, that I generally keep it stocked with blankets, toys and books.  Most mornings my kids eat in the car on the way to school, then devour their snacks on the way home. Ugh….and the amount of paperwork that accumulates with two kids!!!! Somehow it ends up all over the car, torn into tiny pieces….

What do you LOVE about your work? What gives you satisfaction? What can be one of your biggest stressors?

I love the challenge that my work brings me, and the relationships that I’ve built over the years.  I never know what type of legal issue will pop up, or what type of issues will arise in a case.  And hey – I also enjoy being right – which happens once in awhile! In the end, it feels amazing to achieve a great result for my clients.

Aside from my legal career, I recently started an online skincare business. Admittedly, I first joined to enjoy the discount.  But over the past few months, it has filled a void that I didn’t know existed.  I have reconnected with old friends, met new people, and gained an entire group of friends that constantly cheer each other on.  It has brought a sense of calm over my life.

Life in general is a pretty big stressor.  Raising kids – whether as a stay at home mom, or a working professional – is hard! Each day is different, and I never know what to expect.

Thank you for your insight, Kayla! No doubt you are one productive mama!

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