Being a working mum is hard, and it can often feel like "a day late and a dollar short" is the best case scenario: missed deadlines, forgotten dry cleaning, and never, ever seeing friends. But we don't have to reinvent the wheel to figure out a better way through. Just look around at all the super successful mums kicking ass on a daily basis.
This Is How I Do It is a new day-in-the-life series featuring some of these impressive women, who juggle big careers and families with grace and humour. Their stories won't literally do your laundry and pack your kids' lunches while you answer email, but they offer an honest peek at how someone else gets her life together every day.
6:15 a.m. My husband and I wake up to get our two older kids up, fed, and out the door for school.
7 a.m. Time to wake our youngest with morning cuddles and out the door by 7:30am. I don't ever remember school starting so early when I was a kid.
7:30 a.m. - 8:15 a.m. My quiet time to get ready for the day. I throw on my exercise clothes, pack my work clothes, get my daily dose of Instagram art, grab my hot chai tea, and try not to be late for my workout.
8:30 a.m. Daily butt-kicking at Anatomy 1220, the best gym in South Florida with body architect Grant Weeditz.
9:30 a.m. Quick shower and change at the gym, then head to the office by 10. A cold egg white omelet is my breakfast of champions, usually eaten in the car. I'm ready to conquer the day.
10:30 a.m. Conduct an interview with a top candidate for the position of executive assistant. One ad garnered 500 applicants. I am excited to welcome a new member onto the team.
11:30 a.m. Video conference call with our PR team to review the Art Basel programme for the Wynwood Walls, an outdoor street art museum that we own and curate.
12:25 p.m. Confirm today’s car pool pickup of the five kids, two schools, and the two amazing girlfriends I share the responsibility with.
12:30 p.m. Meeting with my construction team on the progress of a 250,000-square-foot building we are building in Wynwood. It’s our biggest ground-up project to date.
1:30 p.m. Eat lunch at my desk while reviewing emails and signing checks. I bring my lunch to work. Healthy body, healthy mind.
2 p.m. Finalise proposal for a potential Goldman Global Arts client, selecting artists, working through a budget, and coming up with innovative and creative solutions.
3 p.m. Review health insurance renewal options for Goldman Properties.
4 p.m. Call with the president of the Miami 2020 Super Bowl host committee. I am a co-chair.
4:30 p.m. Last-minute details for my son's 13th birthday dinner (menu, flowers, balloons, rentals), review my calendar, and plan flights for my next trip to NYC and Philadelphia.
5 p.m. Strategy meeting re: acquisitions for a new Goldman Properties zone.
5:30 p.m. Meeting with my marketing and communications group to discuss company-wide social media strategy for 2018.
6:30 p.m. Head home. Walking thru the door, the business woman takes a break, and mummy kicks into gear. Oh, how I love being a mum.
7 p.m. We sit down to dinner as a family a minimum of five nights a week. No electronics ever at the dinner table. Sometimes, I sound like a broken record, but I feel really strongly about it. It’s our daily family download.
8 p.m. Make sure showers are taken, teeth brushed, papers for school signed, help with homework or SSAT Prep, and hang out with each child. YouTube fishing videos or an episode of Master Chef Junior is a favourite of my little one, a football or baseball game is the relaxation of choice for my middle son, and tears of laughter usually follow an episode of Impractical Jokers with my oldest. My husband and I shift between bedrooms. Lights off...which is always a negotiation, quiet time with each, as we try not to fall asleep with one of them.
10 p.m. So happy to get into my own bed. Watch a TED Talk by Sir Ken Robinson titled “Do Schools Kill Creativity” in preparation to watch him give a lecture at my son’s school tomorrow. I am totally inspired and moved by the talk. Beyond excited to see him in-person. I have forwarded the talk to my Goldman Global Arts teammates.
11:30 p.m. Lights off...ending my day as I begin my day, wrapped in the arms of the love of my life. Always so grateful.
My current passion project: Goldman Global Arts is a business I started with artist Peter Tunney with the intention of elevating the platform of street art and public art as an instrument of change. I took a risk and turned a passion into a business. That business is now doing projects with Hard Rock Stadium, Instagram, Citibank, and rag & bone, among others. What could be better than using art and creativity to transform the familiar into the extraordinary, and, in our own way, make the world a more beautiful, more interesting, more thoughtful place? We were really excited to announce this week that "humanKIND" is the the latest theme for our Wynwood Walls murals, which will be revealed at Art Basel this December.
The best part of my day: Any time that includes my family is my favourite part of the day. I love involving my kids in discussions about my work, putting them to work in one of our restaurants, having them come to my office after school to do homework or to just be with mum. For some work is a choice, for others a necessity. Regardless of the reason, embrace the journey and share it. It is never too early to expose kids to the realities of business. When you come from a family business like I do, business permeates the conversation. Mortgages, profits and losses, human resource issues, current events that affect the lives of your employees. There is no better balance to the classroom than the real life lessons that my husband and I can provide.
The one thing I wish I didn't have to do: Wake up at 6:15 a.m. every day. I am not a morning person.
The one thing I always worry about: I usually worry about things I don't have control over. In some cases I have learned to "surrender" to the things I cannot control, in other cases I try to explore ways in which I can make a difference. Always worrying is not healthy and not productive.
The secret to being a successful working mother is: Be organised. It allows you to be incredibly productive and focused on the tasks at hand. Have a strong, trustworthy team around you. Be decisive, don't micromanage, and look to discover and develop the core passions of your people. There is great power in trust. Have high expectations of others, but have higher expectations for yourself.
The one thing I would tell other working mums: With all of the tasks working mums undertake, it is important to remember that getting older doesn't mean you have to stop being playful. Have fun, be present, be patient, lean on other amazing women, take care of yourself, and do what you can to live healthy.
Becoming a mother changed this thing about me: Becoming a mother is a deeply powerful experience that changes your life forever. For me, it is the most joyous, most fulfilling, and most important role I have. My family always has and always will come first. I have discovered that like leadership, motherhood is an evolution. With both, there is a profound sense of responsibility to the well-being of others under your care. In the close to 15 years that I have been a mother, I have learned that the best way to teach is to lead by example and the best way to learn is to listen and be curious.
Tell us about your village. Who helps raise your kids: It does take a village to raise a child. I have always believed that the more people who love your children, the better. It takes effort to create a close knit family. The foundation of my village starts with the man I created a family with. There is great truth to the idea that the person you choose to make a life with can either bring you up or take you down. I got really lucky when I married Scott. My husband is my greatest protector and my biggest supporter. My village also includes grandparents, aunts and uncles, best girlfriends, and god parents. To be a strong woman, I learned from two exceptional role models, my mum, Janet, and my mother-in-law, Mariita. They started their own businesses, were devoted wives and mothers, and they play a very important role in my life and the lives of their grandchildren.
Being a working mother is hard. There is sacrifice and frustration, fear and exhaustion. But there is also the greatest love, a deep sense of purpose, the legacy that you have taught your children well and that they will make their own positive mark on the world. There is a quote that I discovered recently that I find both simple and powerful “Where there is love, there is life.” - Gandhi